By Pete Chatmon | Shadow and Act November 28, 2011 at 11:39AM
I hope everybody had a Happy Thanksgiving!
As I reported in the last issue, the finishing touches were put on Episode 2 over the holiday and But, We're Neighbors has just been released.
Several new characters are introduced in this episode, creating a triangle of sorts in the 1970s "lost reels" that will develop into several comedic storylines in the next episode. Nichee also gets herself a documentary crew (of one) as she begins to capture her every move and get her show out to the world.
As she said to the executive in Episode 1, "don't be mad when you see us on Bravo".
This was a challenging episode in many regards as we were shooting a daytime exterior set in 1974 and did not have total control over the environment. All you filmmakers out there know that total control is something that only money can buy. Selling a period piece means that nothing out of context can be allowed in frame, so while we were able to secure two period cars to add production value, it was challenging to cover the entire set-up with all of my desired angles because just...out...of...frame on my reverse angle were 2011 Mercedes Benzes, foot traffic, modern homes, and more!
Perhaps these are only the things that get to the person with the shotlist, but I mention it here because it's valuable to give airtime to the types of sacrifices all filmmakers face, whether they have $1,000 or $1,000,000. I always joke that James Cameron probably felt he needed a 20 million gallon tank to make Titanic because the 15 million gallons of water in the tank they used was a compromise.
SHOUT TO THE CREW
Crew-wise, I'd like to give a shout out to our talented colorist, Mr. Eric Alvarado, for continuing to add his magic to the great images our DP Antonio Cisneros captured. I also want to shout out Melina Greene and Charlie Moss for tackling our sound mix in between their NYU classes and whatnot. Melina is our intern at Double7 so it's great to work with the hustling young'ins and share the process with them too.
Stay tuned for Episode 3! I'm really excited about that one as the story takes off to even more places and, in contrast to my commentary above, in Episode 3 I was really able to cover the scene like crazy because it was a controlled environment.
All that said though, there will still be a very interesting story about shooting nudity that coincides with that Ep, but you'll just have to wait for that anecdote.
Until then...keep shooting, spread the word, and drop any comments/questions.
Go check out my buddy Alrick Brown's film KINYARWANDA, distributed by another friend, Ava DuVernay and AFFRM.