Post-Production Performance

0

It’s 3:30am, and I’ve been writing about my experiences on the set earlier in the night. The Director, Line Producer, and DP had asked me to be on set for a particular shot in case it required the help of VFX (Visual Effects). There’s an amazing collective creative spark that happens on a set during production. Contributing to that process provides a rush that I savor, and the night had not disappointed.

The core of my work usually happens after shooting, which is, of course, why they call it “Post Production.” In Post, I’m often fixing issues that came up because of unexpected variables. There’s a lot to do during a shoot day, and everyone’s moving fast to get it all done. Sometimes mechanical or human error is simply unavoidable. Issues during production that involve my having to do “invisible fixes” can range from something as relatively simple as steadying a camera bump during a desired take, to challenges like removing a crew member who inadvertently moved into another camera’s shot. When handling these issues, my performance is usually a balance between getting the best effect possible with the money and time available.

It’s been a great night, but I realize I have to stop writing, because it’s late, and the sentences are all starting to run together. “In moments,” I tell myself, “I’m going to bed.” Then my phone rings. The DIT (Digital Imaging Tech) tells me that there was an issue with some of the footage we shot earlier tonight. We’ve lost some key takes.

Damm. And I was so close to going to bed too!

I call the dailies editor, who gives me the specifics about what we lost – nearly two whole setups, but she’s still transferring B camera, so we don’t know yet what we might have in alternate footage. I bemoan the fact that I was supposed to be sleeping like a baby by now, and then I begin doing the necessary emails to various key people, asking them to call me when they get up. Ugh. Time to get to bed so I can be up before those calls start rolling in.

The information gathering and dispersing continued all through the weekend, and was finally resolved on Monday, after my editor worked with the footage. Everyone decided we were able to make the sequence work quite nicely with what we had, so the looming possibility of a reshoot soon disappeared. Adding a reshoot to our schedule could have delayed the finishing process of the whole first episode, which, depending on press deadlines could have opened up a whole new variety of challenges.

We were back on track, for the time being, until the next challenge would rise up demanding the best performance possible.

About The Author

I was raised in the Des Moines, Iowa, and had the good fortune to come out during my early days at Stanford University, which meant that I came of age in the San Francisco Bay Area, circa 1978! (That deserves two - !! ) I was thrilled to finally understand that piece of myself, and found many inspiring members within the gay community that helped me feel great about who I was. After college I moved out to New York to pursue a career as an actor. My 20's were fairly eventful (it was the 80's in New York, mind you) but by the end of that period in my life, I was looking for a more satisfying way to work and live. When my agent and manager both started moving clients to LA, I went, happily. Eventually I found my way into Renaissance Pictures, the production company run by Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert, where I worked on "Hercules" and "Xena." After several very cool years with them, I headed back to New York, motivated by a possible position on a gay cable network (that never happened) and a new love (that most definitely did!). 13 years later I find myself happily married to my husband Chris, working on two cool shows ("Nurse Jackie" and "Bored To Death"), and living in Chelsea with our golden retriever Jezebel. During the summer we're lucky enough to balance our time between the Pines on Fire Island, and Ptown on Cape Cod. During those visits, Jezebel loves nothing more than to jump the waves after a ball, or chase seagulls along the beach. She's a good role model on how best to enjoy the simple pleasures, and as easy a child to raise and love as ever there was! (She is a golden, after all!) You can reach Brad at carpenterbrad@me.com.

Send this to friend