Tools of Film: working on set

Tools of Film: working on set

For this behind-the-scenes piece created for Bigfoot Studios in Mactan, Cebu, Philippines, we went back to basics and decided to almost take a ‘film school’ approach to make a video that would appeal to a complete beginner in the world of filmmaking. We wanted to answer the question ‘what do the key crew members on a movie set actually do’?  

To address this, during the filming of feature film The Girl With No Number we sat down with First Assistant Director Mark Munson, Director of Photography (DP) Erick Crespo, Key Grip Daniel Anaya, Line Producer Justin Wolske, Electrician Andrew McMennamy, Best Boy Grip Greg Hess, Art Director Carey Rothman and Locations Manager Sally Sasan. We asked them what they did, what tool defines their job (and in case you’re wondering, the DP didn’t say the camera!) and what they like best about their job. Their answers gave a great insight into what life on a film set is like, and show that it’s the people working on your production that count more than any anything else. As Justin comments, ‘people are by far and away your greatest resource’ when making a film. 

As well as filming the key interviews we needed enough footage to illustrate every point, and meanwhile two extra shooters had been amassing a wealth of great behind-the-scenes footage of the crew in action, working on several sets that had been constructed inside one of Bigfoot Studios’ twin soundstages and creating some stunt sequences in some areas outside. It was then a rewarding editing exercise to choose the shots that best represented each point the crew were making in their interviews. This footage shows the crew in action and sells the variety and scope of what the studio can create. 

This piece is a great example of how useful good interview content can be, as it can open the door to using plenty of other material that you might already have – we often say that a ‘talking heads’ video should not just be talking heads. By using the supporting footage to show rather than just tell, you can really get some good results when promoting your studio, production company or film.

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