Final Edit + Evaluation

Below is an embedded presentation of the evaluation of my title sequence [download also available]

Download: EvaluationQs

 

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Evaluation Questions

I must answer the following questions while evaluating my finished title sequence:

1. In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

2. How does your media product represent particular social groups?

3. What Kind of institution might distribute your media product and why?

4. Who would be the audience for your media product?

5. How did you attract/address your audience?

6. What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?

7. Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?

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Shoot Diary

Due to the constant changes to the storyboard, the frequency of new ideas, and lack of decision making, our group suffered organisational problems which caused the filming process took longer than anticipated. On the initial filming week, we were immediately delayed by a physics trip to CERN that I attended, forcing us to start the filming on the following week.

First few days of filming – During the first few days my group (Jack, Shai and myself) arranged to begin the filming in empty classroom late after school so that the lighting conditions were suitable for our plan, however, in this short period we continued to face some issues.

As we had made several adjustments to the storyboard and props that we required, and we had some difficulty working in the location after arranging the scene, a new plan was created to accommodate the camera shots with the general narrative taking much inspiration from the title sequence of the film Se7en. After agreeing to the new plan and ideas, consisting of a man (the protagonist of that iteration of the product // played by myself) walking to a desk and analysing several disturbing and childish drawings while taking notes. Various shots that we had planned also included close-ups of the drawings and teddy bears, the drawings and the bears being destroyed or ‘damaged’ in some way and close-ups of the notes (which would also be a method of revealing the title).

Due to not having all props on-hand, constant changes to the storyboard and some of the group needing to leave at certain times, we were limited in terms of what we could film and we were quite unhappy with much of the footage.

After the third day of filming Shai decided to remove herself from the group and organise a new project after discussion due to the time constraints and class timetables clashing with filming sessions. Me and Jack faced the issues of having less hands to work with and having a very limited time to film the sequence. While we initially struggled to plan a new sequence we soon resolved the issue as we had more freedom developing ideas and gathering inspiration due to both of us having mindsets and inspiration.

Initially we struggled to film the rest of the sequence that we were already working due to being unhappy with the quality and disliking the shots with the children’s drawings so we scrapped the majority of the footage and decided to recast me as the antagonist and place Oliver Buckle in the role of protagonist as we felt that he generally suited the role.

We developed a storyboard [posted on 28/01/14] and began working on a new version of the title sequence that mainly focused on the lighting, comparisons of the antagonist and protagonist, representation of victims through use of teddy bears.

Me and Jack continued to stay after school on multiple days until it was dark for our scenes but due to Jack arranging to babysit we could only film in short sessions. The daytime shots involving Oliver were delayed due to the availability of the actor.

As some of the shots we had planned were not possible for us to do due to lack of resources (i.e. glass sheet/table, magazines for the creation of the antagonists note, actor) we began to focus entirely on the antagonist, the teddy bears and clown, and used high-contrast low-key lighting in a noir style. We also used some very early ideas we had scrapped that were based on the composition of a scene (e.g. placement of a lone coffee mug) with visual effects and altered camera settings to mildly suggest the themes of photography.

From this point on a number of shots that were essentially experimental were taken and were all intended to portray the antagonist, victims and themes rather than have a coherent narrative and function as a prologue.

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Movie Theme Comparison

London To Brighton was distributed by both Vertigo Films and Momentum Pictures, being available in both the UK and USA, however, it was not very popular and did not linger in cinemas for long due to its unsettling theme of pedophilia, which is generally avoided by the US audience.

Much like the film London To Brighton, we had originally planned to have the antagonist as a pedophile but we later changed this so that the plot suggests themes of pedophilia rather than directly feature it.

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Distributing Company For My Film

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I have selected the UK based distributing company Vertigo Films as they specialise in independent cinema and a wide range of genres and audiences. Vertigo are known for the distribution of the films;
Street Dance 3D
The Football Factory [The largest independent UK DVD to date]
Monsters [Multi-award-winning]
London To Brighton

Site: www.vertigofilms.com

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Title Sequence // Components Plan

**Note: Edited plan for final version of title sequence

 

Title: Arctophilia

 

+Filming

Location: The locations that will be used throughout the sequence will be almost entirely indoors within the media classroom. We may also film some shots in the woodland area next to our school.

Costumes: All costumes in the sequence will be the clothing normally worn be students in accordance to our Sixth Form dress code [business wear // Suit/Shirt/Tie/Dress shoes]

Props: We will be making use of two stuffed bears (Koala owned by Jack Mallett [group member]) and small scarfed bear owned by our media teacher) // a windup clown owned by our media teacher // a plain coffee mug from the Sixth Form // a lamp supplied by the science department // Newspapers supplied by the media department //

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Actors: Oliver Buckle and I are the only actors that will make an appearance in the title sequence. I will play the role of the antagonist // Oliver will play the role of the protagonist

 

+Editing

Font: The majority of the superimposed credits will use a default font found in Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 [Prestige Elite Std] // I may use a style/image developed in Photoshop or a font downloaded from the internet for the film title

Music: I will record the music from the windup clown’s internal music box [Be A Clown] and alter the audio for the sequence’s music

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Storyboard

This is the storyboard (after many revisions) for our title sequence footage:

 

Shot 1: Antagonist at a desk in dark room // Lamp as light source

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Shot 2: Protagonist at desk in daytime // {Camera tracks across}

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Shot 3: Protagonist at desk (rear view) // {Camera tracks across}

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Shot 4: Koala stuffed toy sags as if dying // {Close-up}

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Shot 5: Antagonist making bizarre drawings and notes // {High angle shot}

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Shot 6: Antagonist observing a teddy bear // {Mid-shot}

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Shot 7: Antagonist arranging message using cut out letter on top of a glass table // {low-angle shot}

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Shot 8: Protagonist reaching to switch on lamp // {close-up ; hand}

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Shot 9: Light switches on // {close-up ; lamp}

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Shot 10: Protagonist reading message // {Mid-shot}

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Shot 11: Message // {close-up ; message}

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Shot 12: Antagonist dropping a teddy bear, smirking // {close-up ; Hand + bear // Face}

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Additional Ideas:

 

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Title Sequence Ideas and Influence 02

As we had general interest in the film Se7en, and it’s title sequence had many features that effectively conveyed the genre [psychological thriller] and themes to the audience, we drew a large amount of inspiration from it during the planning of our title sequence.

In the initial versions of the versions of the title sequence we wanted to show the characters as logical and methodical while simultaneously showing the audience the events leading up to the beginning of the film in a way that slightly lacked coherence to develop tension and confusion.

Sev7en sequence shots

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Group Roles

As my group consists of Jack and myself (third member was removed due to clashing lesson plans) and there are multiple roles to filled during the filming process many of the roles were split between the two of us

 

Jordan Thomas

  • Assistant cinematographer
  • Lighting
  • Props/Costume
  • Cast member [Antagonist]
  • Producer
  • Editor [My Title Sequence]

 

Jack Mallett

  • Cinematographer
  • Assistant Lighting
  • Co-Producer
  • Editor [Independent Title Sequence]

While both of us share the role of editor we are creating personal title sequences using identical footage

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Title Sequence Ideas and Influence

After joining into a group (consisting of Jack Mallet, Shai Hirst and myself) we decided to merge some ideas from our plots that we developed individually and created a new synopsis.

 

Plot Synopsis: A photographer unknowingly captures a crime in his latest work and becomes embroiled with an ongoing investigation and returns to his former occupation as an investigator after learning that he has obtained evidence linked to recent disappearances of young children.

 

As the plot included elements of photography and childhood we wanted to use objects that directly relate to those ideas and use scenes that effectively represent them in a style suitable for a psychological thriller.

We decided to use ‘children’s’ drawings along with teddy bears as a method of conveying the genre and themes by making them appear violent or in vaguely violent scenarios (e.g. spilled juice to represent blood)

 

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Example of a child’s drawing used for inspiration [our group found the characters to look like gravestones and one of them appears to wear a menacing grin]

 

Below are some images of the prop drawings that we made for the title sequence:

 

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For the elements of photography we had considered some ideas to capture scenes and portray the protagonist’s job as a photographer and investigator:

+A still frame of a murder is shown followed by a camera flash and the events playing in reverse to show how it occurred

+Montages of photographs to show events

+Photographs of teddy bears with toe tags

+A character walking towards a location and beginning to observe a seemingly invisible item but, after a camera flash, the object is revealed to be a corpse in a photograph or still frame

For some inspiration we took a look at the photographer Weegee who is known for street photography of crime scenes and accidents

 

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