We begin this Production Log claiming that another year is in the books! 2014 was tremendously great to us and we couldn’t be happier with our journey in Gauntlet. Releasing our Teaser on Christmas Day is a testament to that statement. If you missed it or haven’t seen it yet, check it out below:
Lots of visual effect work has been created throughout this past year for the clips you just watched. HUD elements, interactive touch screens, teleportation, disintegration, and computerized holographic imagery to name a few. The process invested in each of these effects can be tiresome and meticulous but it’s the payoff that we love when we hear encouraging words of affirmation and positive reenforcement to complete this project.
So we’ve never actually unveiled our antagonist in this film, but she finally makes her appearance in the Teaser. Pixel, played by actress Kelly Rogers, shows her bad self in all of her awesome glory towards the end! Rogers delivers such a great performance that during the writing phase of the script, we had envisioned her to play the role of Pixel. We were grateful that she said yes. She had time to answer a few questions about playing the role, her challenges and what she has learned from being on set:
How would you describe Pixel?
Pixel is, in her simplest form, a robot antagonist. Which makes her sound a bit like someone from Terminator (laughs). In all truth, she is a powerhouse female with a desire for perfection and peace. Whatever she does, she does for what she thinks is the greater good.
What were the challenges you had in playing the role?
Oh, coming up with Pixel’s voice was the first real challenge, then Jeff and I had to figure out her evolution physically and emotionally. Pixel starts as one entity, then changes so completely. Trying to map out and keep consistency was difficult and extremely rewarding. There was also the issue of filming every scene on green screen. We (the actors) were so fortunate to have Jeff as a writer/director and his vision for the film was so complete. He saw every piece; every nook and cranny of the world, and he relayed it to us. That made the filming a hell of a lot easier since we could envision being in this world with him.
What did you learn from the experience?
Every piece I work on no matter how small or grand is a learning experience. But Gauntlet felt like hanging out and filming with family, which was more valuable to me than anything. I look back on the filming and laugh because of all the silliness that happened during each shoot. I also learned that it is VERY hot under the lights in a skin-tight, black, leather bodysuit.
You can find more of Kelly’s acting talents at her site, www.kellyrogersactor.weebly.com
Now that we’re in full swing of 2015, we’re fully invested in creating the world of Gauntlet using Autodesk Maya. This amazing software is allowing us to visually create the 3D sets that the film requires in order to further tell the narrative. We are full of euphoric pleasure to finally create these sets and place our actors performances in the environment later this year. It will still take some additional time for we’re still learning the program but overall we’re elated to know that we’ve finally begun the journey of 3D modeling.
Aside from learning Maya, we’ve also completed our news montage sequence that began shooting back during Production Log 13, literally a year ago. During the beginning of the film, our main character has a flashback of events that lead up to the current time in the narrative. We chose to do a news broadcast montage to enlighten the exposition of the story’s events of the flashback. This past weekend we filmed our last piece that we were previously missing from our second production shoot and put together a rough cut of the sequence. It was a lot of fun taking HD footage and converting the look of them down to SD. Below are some of those stills.
As we close, we’re looking forward to continue our studying of the Maya software while putting the finishing touches on the newscast sequence for next month. Catch you next time!
“As a filmmaker you get typecast just as much as an actor does, so I’m trapped in a genre that I love, but I’m trapped in it!”
– George A. Romero (Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead, Land of the Dead)