Bestselling Amateur Movie Production in 2020
How to Shoot Video That Doesn't Suck: Advice to Make Any Amateur Look Like a Pro
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I Liked It, Didn't Love It: Screenplay Development From the Inside Out
The Complete Filmmaker's Guide to Film Festivals: Your All Access Pass to launching your film on the festival circuit
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Digital Filmmaking for Beginners A Practical Guide to Video Production
Lights, Camera, Action!: An Illustrated History of the Amateur Movie Camera
Film Budgeting: Or How Much Will It Cost to Shoot Your Movie?
Of Spice and Men: A Pancake House Mystery
Make Some Noise: Sound Effects Recording for Teens
The 50 Greatest Cartoons: As Selected by 1,000 Animation Professionals
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Power Filmmaking Kit
The Complete Digital Video Guide: A Step-by-Step Handbook for Making Great Home Movies Using Your Digital Camcorder
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The Mixing Engineer's Handbook, Second Edition
Indie Producers Handbook : Creative Producing From A to Z
- Used Book in Good Condition
Tales of Amateur Filmmaking
Crazy old men and remote locations-just another day in the life of amateur film makers.
We decided to park behind the building to avoid cars passing on the road assuming we were up to no good. Young people plus abandoned, remote building equals trouble to paranoid minds.
However going behind the building didn't help because the first thing we saw once there was a trailer. Who lives behind old abandoned buildings? The trailer looked beat and abandoned itself. Then we spotted a truck half hidden in a barn-like structure. Out of everything, only the truck looked like it had received maintenance in the last 30 years. At that point Amy said "Well we might as well go knock on the door".
We got out and did a check list. One ninja (Summit), one semi, kind-of-maybe ninja (Amy), one person with pepper spray (me), and one person to run screaming away (Han). Thus if an army of crazy people leapt from the trailer we felt we could take them. Amy stopped us halfway to the door. "We've got to get our story straight". I hadn't been aware that we needed a story. She went on "So we're student film-makers. What kind of video is this?" We aren't students and we didn't get to answer her question. At that moment an old man came half-limping from behind the trailer.
We said hello and Amy launched into the student film-maker story. The old man gave her a squinting stare and told us that it wasn't his land. We'd have to call a number on a sign, which he pointed to, and talk to the owner. He also mentioned it was hunting season more than once. We told him we weren't interested in the woods, only in the building. The old school is at least thirty yards from the closest trees-situated well into a field and very visible both from the road and the trees.
We clambered back into my car and drove to the sign. The only sign, mind you, that was in visible distance. Amy called the number and put the phone on speaker. A grandmotherly voice came through from the other end. Amy repeated the student filmmaker story and she went further this time saying that we were making a Christian Rock video. "Grandma" (Amy's name for her, not mine) talked to a Willy and then told us "sure you can film on our land".
We drove back to the old man and relayed this. At which point the old man went into a stuttering, somewhat-insane rant saying, "You have to talk to Jacob. Jacob is the one. Why'd you call the number on that sign, that belongs to the people on the other side of the road". Then he gave an odd laugh. I couldn't tell if the laugh was him hyperventilating or just telling us we were stupid. "You called the wrong number. You need to talk to Jacob". Then he mentioned the name Jacob eight more times.
The sign we were supposed get the phone number from was facing the highway. The highway is a good half a mile down the road, which by the way, is not in visible sight from the trailer or in the direction the man had pointed earlier. We drove to that sign and Amy saved Jacob's number to her phone to contact later. It was late in the afternoon and the light was beginning to die. We decided we should check other locations first.
We looked at an abandoned church further out in Walls. It also had a trailer behind it, so we didn't bother. There's an old barn with only two walls and a frayed roof past old hwy 61. We took some pictures there. It's very scenic and might end up being our film site. My only worry is that if there's a severe storm between filming days our location might fall over.
Amy called Jacob later that night. She brought up the Christian Rock video cover again. "But what if he's an atheist?" I asked her. "Well then he'll think it's a really awesome cover". I shook my head at that. Whatever gets your foot in the door. The crazy old man from earlier had also gone on a rant about how Jacob would make us pay for rights to film. We aren't film students but we may as well be with the amount of money floating in all of our pockets combined. Amy was convinced this cover would keep us from having to pay money.
She called Jacob, but wouldn't put it on speaker this time because Summit is sitting in a rocking chair giggling. She launched into a more detailed improvisation than with "Grandma". She was asked at one point what church we were with. "Oh, I'm just a production assistant, so I'm not sure." She answered. It was a particularly clever touch.
The "school building" is actually an old dairy farm. A dairy farm that Jacob doesn't care anything about. He's more concerned with us possibly being in the woods messing with the hunter's equipment. He leases out parts of his land to local hunters. Which explains why the old man had reacted several times as if filmmaking were a cover for deer hunting. Amy said it best later, "we're shooting a movie not animals, seriously dude".
The old man turns out to be named Randal. We were told to keep Randal happy and stay out of the woods. Jacob lives out of town and could care less if we film the old dairy farm. Thus it pays to go through the trouble of asking permission. Never mind that the permission you receive is for something you aren't doing.