A fun and creative way of learning the process of filmmaking, organization, working in a team, problem solving and respect for your colleagues.
The goal of the course is to shoot a scene from a well known movie.
Every student is assigned a primary role and a secondary role for the shooting. Pre-production and post-production is covered in a general way but it is not in the scope of this course (I have other courses available for this). It is encouraged, although not mandatory, that the participants have some prior acting experience.
The Filmmaking Workshop for Youngsters is a practical course where students learn how to make a film.
Making a film is not just pressing the REC button on the camera. It involves having a script, breaking it down, budgeting and scheduling, production, art, wardrobe, planning the shots, storyboarding, rehearsing the scenes, finding locations, defining the roles and the hierarchy, finding props and equipment.
Then we press the REC button and we have to work with the Actors, the Director, the Assisstant Director, the Cinematographer and his assisstants, Camera guy or girl, Make up and hair, Sound recordists, the all important Runner, Production people.
And we are still not done. After we finish the shooting, we have to edit the film, color grade it, work on the sound mix, find or make music, add visual effects, end credits...
Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.
The course is structured in three parts:
I explain, in a practical and general way, all the roles that are involved in the process of filmmaking. I will explain and demonstrate every role with equipment, examples in video from known movies, examples from my own films and practical exercises in class.
In this second part we introduce the scene we are shooting. It will be short, from a very known movie and it won't be easy. In the last workshop we did, we used a scene from Silence of the Lambs, where Inspector Clarice has a second interview with Hannibal Lecter. We play the scene several times and stress the key points regarding production, the camera angles, the light... every challenge we will face to tell this story the best way possible.
After Part 1, the participants probably have some preferences regarding roles. I always try to respect them, but the idea is that each person takes two roles: one in a leading position, the other in an assistant position. This helps to foster working in a team, taking decisions, following direction, respecting roles, always giving ideas and feedback. And always while having fun!
In this part I train personally each of the students in their assigned role: how to use a camera, camera angles, how to operate the sound recorder and the mic pole, how to use a lavalier microphone, how to light a scene, what a production manager has to do, how to work with actors, etc.
And finally, the moment we were all waiting for: shooting the actual film. We put into practice everything we have learnt. I act as a global producer, assisting in any question and solving issues.
However, most of the time, the students are self-directed, trying to fix problems as they see fit, and making their own decissions.
We repeat the scene two times, so that every person has the opportunity to work in a leading role and in an assistant role, as we decided in Part 2.Afer the movie is finished, we all have a small celebration and then meet again when the film is finished with editing, visual effects and sound. Although this is beyond the scope of this course, I have other courses covering all this if there's enough interest. I also organize courses for writing and pre-production.
Last Summer 2016, we organized the first Filmmaking Workshop for Youngsters at JABY School, in Madrid, Spain. It was a successful experience and everybody learnt a lot about making films and working as a team.
The scene we chose was from the film Silence of the Lambs, not an easy one at all. Luckily the students were also in a theatre group so acting was not bad at all. I was surprised at their commitment with the project. Some of them did hair and make up, others built the jail where Clarice goes to visit Hannibal. They found police costumes, plastic guns, torch lights... They were very enthusiastic and their attention was 100% on my guidance on, for example, how to use a Zoom H4N sound recorder, or when and why you should move the camera. It was a fantastic experience.