Monday, May 9, 2016

The Indonesian Job - Days 4 and 5 - Parks and Recreation

"Never get behind old people. Their bodies are littered with metal and they never seem to appreciate how little time they have left. Bingo, Asians. They pack light, travel efficiently, and have a thing for slip-on shoes. Gotta love 'em"
-Ryan Bingham (George Clooney), Up in the Air

After the disappointment with not getting the Magic Hour shot on Day 3, we moved to other challenges wanting to make sure we came through and Day 4 was definitely a challenge - MacArthur Airport.

As mentioned in an earlier article, NSA guidelines make filming difficult at airports, although the security arrangements are understandable.

Here was the warning that went out with the call sheet:

The location is extremely sensitive, please read all of the following:
  • When we arrive at the airport we will meet at the Cell Phone Parking Lot for breakfast.  All vehicles must land by 7:30am.
  • No one will be allowed past the airport security without an escort. 
  • Once you go past security, you must have an escort at you at all times.  if you violate this TSA may result in an $11,000 fine. This means if you need to go to the bathroom/if you want to get a coffee, or even if you want to go to HOLDING - ask LEIGH first. 
  • Here is a list of things you can not bring on your person through security:
  • All equipment vehicles will be escorted to a cargo entrance with a driver.  Once vehicles are emptied they must return to the parking lot, and the driver must go through TSA security.  
  • Lastly, we will have a working lunch as our time in the airport is limited.  All crew will be compensated $25.

The working lunch was because we had a good deal to shoot and not much time to shoot it.. Because of travel time each way, our actual shooting time was going to be less than eight hours. The last item above was negotiated with crew. In effect, it was a meal penalty so we did not do a full lunch break but the crew was paid for making lunch a working meal. The fact that we had a great crew willing to work with us made all the difference in the world.

The heroes of the day were Leigh, whose preparation for a difficult location made it happen, and Rako, the Indonesian director, who made adjustments on the fly to get everything done. There were originally six scenes scheduled. Rako cut two but added one, and we got home with everyone satisfied and no overtime. Kudos to the Grip and Electric team as well, who worked under those restrictions down two crew members.


Day 5 was, by our standards, relatively uneventful. Most directors have heard my joke about the perfect scene to shoot for a line producer - two people on a park bench, day exterior. While we had more than two people, on more than one park bench and seven scenes and over seven pages, all the scenes were in a park, exterior day.

Day successfully completed, with the exception that we had to recast one of the small roles because Rako was not happy with the casting.

All that was left was Day 6 - our last day - with a company move, actors who needed to get to the airport, and still that Magic Hour shot - Scene 108. More on that in next article.

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