Play It Safe - Behind The Scenes: Blocks 09 and 10

Hey guys, I thought it was high time for another quick update on how Play It Safe is coming along. Post production is going very well, and we screened the entire film for some of our core crew members for the first time a few weeks ago. Not only was is very rewarding to be able to show the guys what they've been working on for so long, but it was amazing to get their feedback on how the edit is coming along. Right now, Raechel and I are working hard on our third cut of the film and we'll be testing it on some real audience members (i.e. people who weren't involved in the film's production) for the very first time within the next two weeks!

I have to say, the last few weeks of post have been pretty surreal. As you can imagine, making a feature film is an incredibly slow and time consuming process. It took us a year to write the script, a year to shoot it, and then more than three months to put together our first assembly. But now, all of sudden, things are starting to happen very quickly. As the edit gets tighter and tighter, the time it takes us to produce a new cut gets shorter and shorter. This is incredibly exciting, and it's beginning to feel as though we're finally getting close to the home stretch!

I'll write more about our post production adventures as soon as I can, but for now I think it's about time that we get back into our retrospective review of how we actually shot Play It Safe. Today I have some behind the scenes stills from blocks 09 and 10 of production.

Block 09 was a simple one day shoot. We had the very talented Matt Joe Gow on board to do a scene with Nick, and then (as you might notice from the location) Nick and I got down to the business of recording the first video update. Shooting the scene went very well, but in terms of the video update... well, let's just say that I prefer to stay behind the camera as much as possible and the temperature of forty degrees celsius didn't help me much either!

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Block 10 was a two day shoot a couple of blocks from where I'm currently living in Brunswick. While I'm super happy with how all of the final scenes turned out, we had a tough time getting the shots we needed. Unfortunately for us, the house next to our location was open for inspection and we ended up wasting several hours just trying to capture an incredibly simple sequence where Jamie knocks on the door and enters the house. We were interrupted again and again by a multitude of cars fighting for parking spaces, loud noises from the house next door, and in one instance a very aggressive person who made it his mission to disrupt our production. Ahhh, the joys of shooting on location!

These kinds of incidents are never easy and they can be very troubling to a director. You're just standing around watching the minutes tick away on your clock, desperately trying to fight a rising panic that you might not be able to shoot everything you need. For me, it was a good reminder of how important it is to keep your emotions in check when on a shoot. It's never pleasant when someone comes up and shouts in your face for no good reason, and it's hard to stay calm and collected when it feels like time is running out, but that's really the best thing to do in these kind of circumstances. So, we soldiered on!

The entire cast and crew did an absolutely stellar job to cope with all of these hiccups, and to my delight we managed to make up all of the lost time and all of the scenes turned out wonderfully!

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Alrighty, I think that's enough rambling for one day. More updates coming soon!

Chris Pahlow

Chris Pahlow is an independent writer/director currently in post-production on his debut feature film PLAY IT SAFE. Chris has been fascinated with storytelling since he first earned his pen license and he’s spent the last ten years bringing stories to life through music videos, documentaries, and short films.