12-09-01 Pre-Production

    I’ve started keeping a production journal [this is a bit meta, since you’re reading the journal I’m talking about here], not in the traditional sense. It’s not to keep track of the various financial or scene details. Instead, it’s a journal of what I’m doing and how I’m feeling about it. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with it when it’s done. But, I’ve decided I’m going to try and write a weekly summary of the journal here at the website.

    So, here’s Week x (like the algebraic variable, not like the Roman numeral).

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    As I’ve grown in skill as a filmmaker I’ve come to realize that making beautiful images that sound good require good cameras, lenses, things to hold and move the camera, and good sound equipment. I know lighting is a big part of it too, but I prefer to use lights as natural lighting. For that reason, I seriously upgraded my camera from a Canon T2i to a Canon 5d Mark III. This gives me the ability to capture much more light. I also got more batteries and a zoom lens (Canon 70-200mm 2.8 IS II L).

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    I met with Lawyer. I told her the gist of THE ROOT KIT (henceforth referred to as TRK) and she recommended caution. In the script I reference a lot of specific products, showing those electronic devices and how they can be hacked. But, TRK is not a documentary, so fair-use is out. It’s going to be very difficult for me to get the companies that make those products to sign a release because it doesn’t paint them in a very positive light. She suggested reframing the shot so at least the logos on the product aren’t shown, or are blurred to the point of being indistinguishable.

    Lawyer made another suggestion: that I be careful about saying that every computer exploit in the movie is real. The thing is, breaking into computers is a federal offense, doubly so if the intrusion happens to cross state lines. So, the line will now read, “While the computer attacks in this movie are simulated, they are all known or theoretical exploits.” So, I’ve got that covered.

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    There are about forty total roles in TRK, which I’ll be casting in tiers. The first tier is the eight leads. I’ll be posting a list of them on Monday on this site, so keep an eye out. [That list has been removed.] Of course, the lead is taken; my collaboration with Xander is why I wrote TRK in the first place. And, Xander has connected me with some other excellent actors as well, so three to four of the key eight roles are filled. For two of them, I’m aiming at specific stars, which, of course, I can’t mention here until they’ve signed on.

    I finished version 1.0 of the script on Wednesday because I had told the man who I hope signs on as Producer that I would get it to him by mid-week. Now, I know I’m not supposed to talk about how great my script is, that I’m supposed to let industry buzz about it and then climb on the bandwagon. But, I’ve got to say, I’m pretty excited about where it’s at. All the actors who have read it love it.

    If Producer loves it, then this train really starts moving. The fact is, I’ve been pulling this train by myself for a while. It will be really nice to get someone else on board to help. Here’s hoping.