News from around the Turnip

We’ve been busy. Here’s the highlights. But the fun part is giving your opinion (see "writing" below).

Screenings: Our film Memory of a Kiss was screened at the Longleaf Film Festival in Raleigh in May. The remarkable SCENE was screened at the Cary Theater in April as part of the ongoing series of short films “Film In Motion” organized by the Triangle Filmmaking Community. SCENE won the Audience Award at that screening.

Community: The screenwriters group has been successfully launched. We meet twice a month and have been meeting regularly since January. Membership is open. Our next meeting is June 27th and then, after one more meeting in July, we will be on hiatus for the summer, resuming in September.

Production work: I had an interesting job shooting greenscreen of an executive who wanted to appear IN her slide deck for a corporate meeting. We ended up setting up the greenscreen in the lobby of the fifth floor of the corporate headquarters (on a Saturday). Assisted by Kevin Richmond and Jonathan Serxner on this gig.

I was DP (photo to the right) on the first four pilot episodes of Millionaire Mom, an inspirational reality show, produced by Adrian Wright. A two-camera shoot, assisted by Ben Turney (sound) and Konrad Arnold (gaffer). Fun creating a TV set in a living room plus shooting "run and gun" out and about in Raleigh.

Capabilities: I have been vacillating on the subject of 4K cameras, digital cinema cameras and a replacement for my trusty (but nine year old!) Sony EX1. So, I took the plunge on the Panasonic UX180. It’s a compromise of all of the above-mentioned cameras. Digital cinema? It can shoot full DCI 4K and an actual 24fps (not 23.98). Replace the Sony? It has dual XLR audio inputs and a parfocal built-in zoom lens, very useful in commercial gigs. What, no interchangable lenses? No, but the built-in lens has a range from (35mm lens equivalent) 24mm wide angle all the way to 480mm telephoto. Most important specification? Half the cost of the alternatives!

 Progress report on my personal film: That Moment

As I explained in the last newsletter, this film - That Moment - is a departure from the "standard" process. No script. Only two lines written beforehand. Five life-changing moments surrounded by the flurry of life.

In March / April Caitlin and I finished shooting the film. Meaning that we had a party, we drove around (with the assistance of Dave Perez and Jane Gonzalez), we went into restaurants and bars and walked down city streets.

The result is a very rough rough cut of the film. At least I now know that this experiment will result in a film. Lots more squeezing and trimming; the rough cut is more than twice the desired length of the final film.

A filmmaker friend visited and the instant he saw one scene with Caitlin Wells he said, "She's a professional actor, right?" Right indeed.

 Writing: what do YOU think?

I've got three (and a half) feature film scripts burning a hole in my desk, so to speak: Nixie, Paint The Town and Boxing Lessons.

I thought it would be fun for YOU (readers of this newsletter) to read a very brief synopsis of each and vote on the script you think ought to be the one to try to produce. It's a single question survey, so one click is all you need to do (but you can also comment). The survey and the brief descriptions are HERE.

 Following Turnip

Turnip is my way of having fun, making a little money and trying to create things of value. Based in North Carolina, I try to have lunch with every local filmmaker I meet. I write scripts, produce short dramatic films and do enough commercial video to support my film habit. I"m also fond of helping out with other filmmaker's films.

Twitter: http://twitter.com/turnipvideo. More active here than Facebook.

The Blog: reflections on life, high tech and film here.

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