Tuesday, 22 February 2011

PRODUCTION-Thriller Filming: DAY TWO

Today was very productive as we finished off our opening successfully and productively. We only have one more shot left to film which we can do in our media lessons as its just of the sky. Hopefully on a clear bright day. We managed to finialise our shots and take a few more whilst we there to ensure we had enough and that they ran smoothly.
As we had finished we watched them over on the video and the lighting was ok from what we saw.

Here are some on shoot photos for the second day:

Filming Session For Thriller Opening - Second Day (with on shoot photos): PRODUCTION

Today we had our second filming session for our thriller opening. It was a very productive day and we got lots of shots. We only have two more shots that we need to complete the filming, these shots are one of the sky and one of Francesca walking casually in the street, we can do this during our media lessons. 

In the first filming session, we had concerns about the darkness of the room and were worrried that we may have to re-film our whole opening, but after watching through the clips we saw that the lighting was good. After we get the required shots, we can begin to edit our thriller opening.

Here are the on shoot photos:


Monday, 21 February 2011

Filming Session For Thriller Opening - First Day (with on shoot photos): PRODUCTION

Today we had our first filming session for our thriller opening. It went well and we got a variety of shots. We did not completely do what was on the storyboard as we came up with better shots and better angles. Our second and final filming session will be tomorrow.

We have to film the end of the opening and some other shots such as the CCTV shot and the shot when the roof dripping. These are the hardest shots we have to do, hence our decision to leave it to tomorrow where we will have more time to focus solely on these shots, as we have filmed most of the shots that we needed to film.

Here are the on shoot photos:

PRODUCTIN-Thriller Filming: DAY ONE

For the first day of filming we wanted to get the first two pages of our storyboard complete, which we successfully achieved. Howevere, we had ensure that the lighting was enough as the last time we filmed there was not enough light when we got back to edit.

As soon as we got to the garage, we set up our scene sraight away. We worked well and effieciently as  group because we all contributed ideas towards makeup, setting and camera angles/shots. We have left the CCTV scene and a few others until tomorrow because it made sense to do it the next day when we had more time.

Here are a few on set shots:

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Thriller Opening Preperation

On the 15/02/11 and 18/02/11 our group began to prepare our setting and costumes/makeup ideas for the filming of our opening the following week. We spent the lessons taking candid photos and printing them of Francesca to put up on one of the walls in the room as it will be the first thing that she sees. We took plenty to make it look as if a stalker had been following her throughout our movie. Eda and I appeared in the shots to make them look as if she was doing everyday things with friends around her to make it more beliveble. She will rip the collage of photos off of the wall in the end of our clip therefore we needed as many as possible. We also decided that Frankie would wear plain clothing as it would help her get into character and minimal makeup to show her distress and worried look to the audience.

Thriller Opening Preparation

My group and I spent our lessons on 15/2/11 and 18/2/11, taking candid photos of Francesca as it will be apart of our thriller opening. We took plenty of photos which we will stick on a wall in the room of our thriller opening that Francesca wakes up in. Stavroulla and I appeared in some of the photos too as it will show that Francesca is being stalked during her everyday activities, such as hanging out with friends.

Thriller Opening - The Butterfly Effect

The thriller opening of The Butterfly Effect is very interesting. It is conventional for most thrillers to begin slowly in order to build suspense, whereas in The Butterfly Effect, it begins fast paced with action. As it begins with action, it makes the audience wonder what is going on, and why? This builds suspense, along with the fast paced, ominous music which adds to the idea of him being chased.

It then breaks convention, as the title sequences fades out into a sunny day, which is how we plan to do our thriller opening. We will intertextualize with The Butterfly Effects' idea of fading out from a fast paced scene to a sunny day. As it fading into the sunny day, it shows the title which bridges together the image of the x-ray skull with a butterfly with it and the image of the sunny day, this is how we plan to do our title.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Plan for a thrilling Read

On the 14/1/11 our group was given a specific task which was to make a sequence involving a newspaper. After we filmed our sequence we then had to edit it as well in order to get a good productive sequence. Before we began to start filming we first planned the story. We were told to use 12 various shots in our thrilling read sequence.

Our overall story was about a stalker women who wanted to get revenge on a girl, we can see this from the last ending clip when the stalker puts her hand on the victims shoulders. When we was planning we planned that Stav would be the stalking women and Farhen would be the victim girl.

When the filming was over and finished, we then headed to the editing suit to edit all the clips and footages which we took in order to produce the whole sequence. For us to achieve that we had to use the macs and the editing program "Final Cut Pro". 

Evaluation of Prelim Film

Preliminary Match Cut Exercise - FINAL FILM

Thriller Audience: Research

In 2009, data's show that there were 31 suspense filmed which was released, and overall approximately 503 in total was released in that year. Considering that action, animation and comedy genres have a wider age range and also the fact that family appeal to it as well, they were in account of 52% of box office in the UK. 

As we can see that thriller movies intend to account for a low proportion of box office. The reason why i believe this could be is because of the fact that not many thriller movies are being released in the UK based on the data's it is shown to us that only 4% in the year of 2009. For instance one thriller movie which was not released in the cinemas but was released straight from DVDs was called the "God father" for a start. The age range of all the thriller movies which have already been released start from the certificate age range 15 to 18+, which therefore indicates there is a specific aged people to watch the thriller movies this therefore supports the fact why thriller genre is not as accounted in the UK.

 Reflecting to this table we can examine that suspense is preferred and more watched by females rather than males. The table also indicates that male watch more Sci Fi as well. The genre which is commonly watched for both gender is "comedy" which therefore means that comedy films make more hit as they are preferred and watched mostly by both sex. 

Response to "watching" Documentry: RESEARCH

From watching the documentary Thomas sutcliffe elaborated on an aspect about film openings need to seduce the audience into long term commitment. What Thomas Sutcliffe meant by that term is that when creating an opening you muse ensure that it gets the audiences attention. Danny Boyle also says the fact that it must also show enough ambition and potential at the start engage the audience in order to keep watching the movie. However other directors have other views about how the opening scene should be for instance some believe that the opening scene should not be such dramatic and should be more patient, for instance one director who suggests this is Jean Jacques. He believes that when the audiences are watching they should experience an organic building of the story and excitement as well, which then reaches to a climax. In the documentary what Jean explains is that the risk of immediate attention is that  you would have to put more effort throughout the film in order to keep the same excitement throughout the whole film and sometimes this would be hard to achieve as well.

The beginning shot intends to be extremely hard, based on the fact that its the part where you have to make sure the audience do not know everything however there still has to be a part where the audience engagement is still there to carry on watching the film. They have to make the audience to get the feeling where they want to still carry on watching on and want to know more.

Structure of thriller opening with examples: RESEARCH

Based on all the thriller films already produced, based on a close look there seems to be three specific structure typically used in the thriller films. The three structure happen to be for instance a narrative opening, a discrete title sequence and also a title over a blank screen, followed by the narrative opening.

Narrative opening

A narrative opening intends to be an opening when the audience is firstly introduced to the location and setting so its when the story of the film is taking place with the image at the background and the titles running over it and such. An specific example of this type of opening is the "panic room".

A discrete title sequence

A discrete title sequence happens to be heavily edited. It is basically when the title sequence are individually edited sequence. They are stylised and also supports majority of all the opening credits and film as well. An example of a discrete title sequence is in "seven"

Title over a blank screen

These happen to be opening which intend to have a title running over a blank screen, they happen to often include sound effects before the images and such are introduced. An specific example of this form of opening is from the film "Donnie Darko".

Skills: Sound

In todays session a specialist technitian came to our lesson and gave us a good introlduction and knowledge on how to use the sound track pro. Sound track pro happens to be a music composing and an Audio editing application software. This application was created by Apple too. It has many types of sound effects and proffessional instrument loops too. We were told that there was more than 5000. We were taught two types of modes which was multitrack mode and also Audio editing mode as well.

Multitrack mode happends to be where the sound effects and also the instrument loops can be arranged to get transmitted with the video tracks and also where other external audio sources can be recorded. As with all the apples loop arranging software, it happens to be that the project masters key and aslo temp can also be set, this would lead to that all the loops will be automatically played at those specific settings. As well as that it is also known that at the same time the key and tempo can be changed and adjusted over the time with the master envelope. The other mode is the Audio editing mode. In this mode the "audio editing" individual each clip can be edited. In this mode the audio can be well analysed for a normal audio problem for instance pops and clicks, clipped signals and also powerline hum, as well as other problems which occur can be sorted out as well. Not only that but also Audios can be faded in and out, noises can aslo be cut out so basically removed away, for a specific selection the amplitude can be changed and also waveform and ambient can be inserted.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011


In todays lesson we had a session on LiveType which happens to be a software program which was developed and produced by apple. LiveType is a software which produces animated title sequences for video projects and such. It tends to include many aspects such as fonts, templates, effects, textures and other aspects. We learnt in that session that it could import and forms of standard media files and also which can create text tracks. In this software program the text can be edited, which therefore means that the title can be shaped in any layout you want for instance either curved and such. Not only that but other aspects can be changed and adjusted too for instance a title or character can be key framed for instance the changes can be the size, outline, shadow, drop and also the tracking of the text too.
Live fonts happens to be one of the most crucial key features on this program. These are not ordinary fonts but are fonts with animated features. There are many types of LiveFonts shipped with LiveType for instance:
- Smoke writing
- Animated handwriting
- Blinking led character and many more.
Not only that but its also possible to produce custom LiveFonts however generating a separate movie file for each letter makes the file sizes very significant.
Theres also many effects as well. Either in liveFonts or normal system fonts many forms of animation effects can be applied to type. Also new effects can be scratched to by using keyframing and also timing of the effects can be adjusted too. There is many types of animation effect which can be applied for instance zoom, fades, glow and many more. There is more to it rather than based in texts considering the fact that there is a wide range of animated objects and also textures which can be added to a sequence as well. Also there happens to be a significant number of templates included as well e.g title themes and templates and such.

Introduction to editing: skilss

The first time we used an editing program was after we finished filming our "thrilling read". After we finished filming we then had to put it on an editing software so that we could edit the clips and join them together in order to form a productive sequence. For this process to take place we had to use "Final Cut Pro". "Final Cut Pro" is an editing software where you can be allowed to edit. "Final cut pro" happens consist of four crucial windows which tend to be Browser, timeline, canvas and also viewer.

* Browser - The browser is the sector where you place the video clips which you filmed. It also happens to give a more easier access and not only that but also arranges them into folders which are named as the bins.
* Timeline - The timeline is a sector where the clips can be edited together and such; for instance you can adjust the sizes of the clips and not only that but also crop the clips as well.
* Canvas - The canvas happens to be where the video footage appears it self after you have placed it on the timeline.
* Viewer - The viewer happens to display and also view tabs of all the selected clips audio channels. Not only that but also the volume key can be key framed and also the audios waveform can be scrubbed and viewed too.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Pitch Review: With Storyboard

On the 11/2/11 we prepared a pitch for our class and teachers to display our ideas of how we want to construct our opening and what it would be about. We presented it on Powerpoint to clearly show our thoughts of how we want our thriller opening to be. We mentioned breifly an outline of the film, props we are going to use, costume and target audience.

When we had finished our presentation we asked the class for some feedback and some questions were asked. This made me realise that certain ambitions within our plan had to be altered. For example, the matrress idea would be hard to achieve as we wouldnt be able to get one in time for shooting or be able to moblise it to our location. Therefore, we have to create an alternative option for our setting.

We have decided to film in the first few days of half term in my Aunts garage as its empty, grungy looking and means we will have as much time as we want on those days to film our shots. I think that in doing this pitch, it has made me realise we need to do more planning in order for us to productively work effieciently and smoothly on the days that begin filming. This way we can get it done quickly and then focus on editing the whole scene when we get back to college.


After presenting I feel much more confident about our idea. I think that our pitch went quite well as the teachers liked the idea but gave us some good critisims to help us make as much of an effective opening as possible. 

Thriller Opening Pitch Review (with storyboard)

On 11/2/11, my group and I pitched our thriller opening idea to our teachers and class using a PowerPoint presentation. We gave them a brief outline of our film and talked briefly about our props, costumes, sound, sub-genre, production company and target audience.

Once we had finished our pitch, our teachers and people in our class asked us questions and gave us ideas on how to improve it. As we did our presentation I realised we needed to put more planning into our thriller opening as some ideas, such as the CCTV idea, will be difficult to manage. 

We will be filming sometime during the half term in Stavroulla's aunts garage, but before we do this we definitely have to do more planning. This way we will finish filming sooner as we will know exactly what we are doing and how we are going to do it.

I think our pitch went well as our teachers liked the idea, even though they suggested we put more thought into the idea and plan better. After presenting our pitch I feel more confident in our idea and am relieved that they didn't say that we have to come up with a new idea. Once we have planned more, the next thing left to do will be filming...


Friday, 11 February 2011

Introduction to Cameras

Before we started to do any filming, we had to have a small session on how to use the camera. Our whole class had an induction on how to use cameras before starting our first filming which was the "thrilling read". During that session of how to use a camera  we were taught many things such as how to use the camera without any damages taking place and how to take good care of it and such.

We were taught many things about how to make the camera work properly and make it work with good care. For instance starting of, one aspect is to make sure that we never touch the lens as it leads to the lens to consist of finger prints this then leads to any shots being filmed turning out to be blurry. Another thing was to  always ensure that the battery and also memory card are placed in securely. Always ensure what buttons you press, for instance only press the buttons that are necessarily needed while filming for instance the buttons such as the on and off button, zoom  in and out button, play, stop and pause button and lastly the focus button. The other thing we got taught was to always ensure that the focus is set correctly. Lastly was to always make sure that we store the camera in a secure place to prevent it from getting damaged or either stolen.

In the session we was also introduced to tripods and how they should be used as well. For instance the sort of things we were told was things such as how to keep the tripod balance which was to use the tripod compass for guidance. We were taught how to slide the camera on and off the tripod. For instance when taking the camera of the tripod, we have to press the red buttons inwards then we need to ensure that the leaver is pulled away, this then should allow us to slide the camera out eventually while holding the camera on the top tightly. The other thing was to always ensure that the camera was on securely on the tripod considering the fact that it could fall of. Last of all was to always ensure when using the tripod that all the legs are all positioned correctly and also is stabled to especially   before placing the camera on it.

Production Schedule

21st February - Filming
22nd February - Filming
1st March - Editing
4th March - Editing
8th March - Editing
11th March - Editing

We also plan to attend workshops so that we will get more done quicker and so we will not have to rush our editing during class. And we need a shot of the sky when it is sunny so we are waiting for the weather to be nicer in order to film that shot.

Thriller Opening Location

Here are our location shots for our thriller opening. It is Stavroulla's aunts garage. We chose this location because it reflects our story well, it is damp and dirty which makes it perfect for our opening. 


I did my prelim with another group. We worked well together, and edited our scene effectively, using fun groovy music to create humour.

Storyboard for Thriller Opening: PLANNING

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Evaluation - A thrilling reading

While we was producing this piece of thriller production we had to co-operate as a team. There was many positive attitudes we have towards this sequence as well as many negative to considering that it was our first sequence which we produced as a group. As you can see based on the sequence we have used many varieties of shots, so therefore we used many types of shots wisely. The type of shots we included were for instance:

                                                      - Long shot
- Medium shot
- Extreme Close up shot
- Close up shot
- Wide shot
- A point of view shot
- High angle shot
- Low angle shot
- Birds eye view shot

As well as there was positive aspects in this sequence we produced there was negative aspects too for instance in one of the clips which we filmed the tripod is the frame which was basically an object which was not wanted in the clip so therefore in the future while filming we must ensure that no unwanted objects take place in the filming. Another situation was the fact that in this sequence an over the shoulder shot was suppose to be required and technically forgot to include that shot so in future filming we must make sure we include all shots especially the ones that are required. We also in the future need to assure that the focus is on because in this sequence we never put the focus on so the viewing wasn't that of a good quality. Last of all the last situation which we done was the use of long and medium shots, as you can see in the beginning of this sequence we used a significant amount of long and medium shots which made it drag on for long and made the sequence at the start rather boring as well. Even though there was many negative aspects there was still positive aspects too, as it was our first sequence which we produced it was not that bad however it could be improved significantly however in the future our skills will develop even more.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

The Art Of The Title Sequence: RESEARCH


From the 'Art Of The Title Sequence' website I saw this title sequence of John Carpenter's 'Halloween'. I really liked it because, as it says on the website, it sends some into a panic and some smiling, so it has a different effect on people which I thought was very effective.

It uses a classic sans serif typeface that is orange which links to the main theme of the film which is Halloween. The sequence displays the names of the participants of the film, including the stars, the director, the producer, director of photography, etc..

This title sequence is the 'titles over a blank screen followed by a narrative' one. It is effective and makes the orange text stand out. On the left hand side of the screen we continuously see a pumpkin which slowly zooms in from a long shot to an ECU.

The title sequence concludes with a flicker and a fade to black, leaving only the directors credit and the creepy music which opens our eyes in fear. Even if I hadn't seen the film I would have guessed from the high pitched tense music with the creepy piano motif and the chilling image of the pumpkin, that this film is a thriller. So overall, this title sequence is successful in setting the mood of the film, which is suspenseful.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Planning For Thriller Opening

On the 4/02/11 Frankie, Eda and I began to brainstorm ideas for our thriller opening. We had many ideas to think about and eventually we found an idea that we all began to exapnd on giving eachother inspiration on certain scenes. We created a breif outline, decided on a possible location and allocated roles to eachother within the production. Therefore, we had a productive day of planning and have an idea that will become brilliant once we do further planning and thorough research on how to achieve the best possible shots in our possible location.

Planning For Our Thriller Opening

Today Francesca, Stavroulla and I begun planning our thriller opening. We did a brief plan of our opening and now have a good idea of what our story is. We also have a possible location where our filming will take place. So today we did quite alot of planning towards our thriller opening but still have to produce an animatic in order to pitch our idea in lesson next Friday.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Using 'Livetype' for Prelim

Once we had finished the soundtrack for the prelim, we started to create the title and the credits using Livetype. I had only used Livetype once before but it was very simple to use.

All we had to do was type the text in the Inspector, then choose the font style, size, colour and effect that we wanted, then it shows on the Canvas. And you can adjust the timing on the Timeline.

By using Livetype for our prelim, I learnt more things and this will be helpful when creating the title and opening credits for our thriller opening.