Nov 14 2010

The ‘Gothland Elysium’ rough cut (a.k.a. ‘Alpha One’) is done!

I am proud to announce that our first rough cut (which I named ‘Alpha One’) of ‘Gothland Elysium’ now is done! I have spent 30 hours in a non-stop crunchmode this weekend to get this done. I just reached 100% on this editing project, but now while I scroll through it, in Final Cut Pro 7, I feel around 20% finished in total haha… There is still SO much tweaking and polishing to be done. And also some parts that really doesn’t work too well and requires some magical fixes.

‘Alpha One’ is around 40 minutes long and then there is still large parts of our intro missing, some scenes here and there and also the end credits. So I think that GE will be around 50 minutes long, unless we decide to remove parts later due to the lack of magical fixes.

I have also added our soundtrack to 80% of the entire film and done color grading, in Apple Color, to various scenes as tests. I created four different color grades this summer and I think that we will stick with these, because I really don’t want to use too many grades. One third of the film has also got audio/foley fx, which I started today when the cut part was done. But the audio/foley/fx/ADR is merely in the beginning stage. While I get this ‘alpha’ into a more proper ‘beta’ I will work on VFX for the +20 scenes that requires this. Stay tuned!

by intelligentlight


Nov 14 2010

Wallpaper concepts

Hello again! I haven’t had much time to create new character posters yet, but here are some wallpaper concepts. These are just in one resolution, for now, to use on 17-24″ widescreens @ 1920 x 1200 pixels. Just right-click the images and view them to get 100% scale.

Mamiya 645 + Phase One P25 digital back was used for these.

Enjoy.

by intelligentlight







Oct 3 2010

Contrast

Yes, I know. There hasn’t been a lot of activity around here for ages. With two exceptions - Some fuckwits trying to peddle “cheap tablets”. Online. (They must have eaten them themselves to the point of mental short-circuit if they thought that this would be a good place to market them.)

WELL, AT LEAST IT NOT SPAM! RIGHT…?!

Okay. Enough of that.

The second and by far nicer exception is yesterday.

Exactly one year ago, I was sitting here in the exact same spot, receiving short but alarming phone-calls every now and then during a very long morning. The gist of the calls all slowly built up to one fact - The production was threatened on both logistic and personal levels. I thought to myself amidst flashbacks from “last time”: “Some motherfucker has jinxed us for real. There is no way this few seemingly insignificant incidents can lead to this many larger ones that spiral out of control, create one bottleneck after another and and stall the whole thing.”

But it worked out more or less. Due to certain complications, we had to change a few plans that admittedly weren’t very well thought out from the beginning. But at least we now know how to avoid them in the future.

For me personally, it has been a fucked up year so far. (Some people close to me got into serious trouble “thanks” to old “ghosts” from their past. Others became severely ill - Physically and mentally. And there has been loads of other shit that constantly has been infecting thoughts, actions, reactions and ideas.) And I have a feeling that it’s not over yet, and that the lessons not learned easily outnumber the ones learned.

So it was nice to hear some good news for a change and see that things have begun to happen again with this little movie-project. (The photoshoot was obviously a nice thing and a “two birds with one stone”-killing for those involved.) Of course, “G.E.” has been circulating in my thoughts almost every day during the last months. There were (And is.) ideas for a full-length movie with a back-story and “real” expositions. But you can’t really have it all.

But we’re nowhere close the finishing line yet. We’re still missing one crucial and explaining scene which we have no idea how to shoot yet. And the intro needs to be shot before the first snow falls. (Which could be tomorrow with some bad luck.)

Still, nothing changes the fact that this has been an interesting and rewarding experience. We have already stated that on numerous occasions and we can easily say that neither of us would be the least reluctant to work together with the rest of this crew at some point.

Bring on the chances…!

by Markus


Oct 3 2010

The Photoshoot

Here are a few (non-photoshopped, except the text) photos from today’s shoot at Imaginara Photographia in Borås. These are merely previews; some enchanced photos/posters will be posted here soon. You can read more about the shoot in the below thread.

From top to bottom: Anna Hedqvist, Miki Terasaki and Nils Bossius Klintenberg. Enjoy!

by intelligentlight


Oct 2 2010

On the road again

Today was a great day. The planned ‘Gothland Elysium’ 2010 photoshoot was a true success. And the thaifood we had for lunch was truly awesome too.

It felt strange, yet FUN to be on the road again with most of the GE-crew as I drove the main cast to Borås for the shoot. The purpose was to get hi-quality photos for movie posters, character movie posters and also just photos for the cast. Thank you Imaginara Photographia (Henrik Bengtsson) for a great day in your studio once again. Lots of fun and lots of great photos.

The shoot was around 160x photos using a Mamiya with a Phase One P25 (22-megapixel) digital back. The word “epic” hardly scratches the surface of that beast of a camera. My fantastic EOS 5D Mk II felt like a Polaroid compared to it. ^^ I will add some example photos from the shoot in the next and above thread.

by intelligentlight


Oct 2 2010

Sevenhundred and thirty days

Hello again!

Yes indeed, two years have passed since ‘The Boom Brothers’ were formed and we started preproduction (mainly scripting) on ‘Gothland Elysium’. The last year has gone by way too fast and neither Markus nor I remember where all the days went… We are currently finishing this film project and we hope that it will be 100% complete in winter of 2010.

I took a break from the project during spring because I had so much to do at work and also because I felt that I needed to distance myself from the project in order to conjure up some new ideas regarding editing and post production. I also continued to work on the preproduction of our next project ‘Island of Illusion’ (”IoI”) and I created another concept/teaser-poster for it. You can see that one below here. As usual, just right-click and press view to see it in a slightly bigger resolution.

A lot has happened during 2010, but I will add more updates and info in the next and above threads. Thanks for staying tuned.

by intelligentlight


May 5 2010

A Proud Teacher

I have so many talented film/music-students and I thought that I’d post some of my favorites from 2010 so far.

Svartedalens IF - ‘Att leva, inte bara existera’

An awesome mockumentary created by Christoffer Johnsson, Joel Karlsson, Viktor Grahn, Mattias Rydström and Julian Björk from my class of 3C.

Attero Sathanas - ‘His Wanted Position’
featuring Nils Bossius Klintenberg (from my class of 3C), who plays ‘Tim’ in Gothland Elysium. This genre is not my cup of tea haha, but a lot of people like this and I am proud of his work and musical talent.

by intelligentlight


Mar 28 2010

Upcoming dreams and nightmares

While I have been working slowly on the editing of Gothland Elysium
I have also started pre-production on the next project Broken Circle III: PARALLAX. In one way Parallax is a lot easier to produce than G.E, since Parallax will only be around 10 minutes long i.e 1/3 of G.E. Parallax will also be filmed inside a studio, pretty much all in front of a green screen with motion tracking. That will make things a lot easier in some ways, but complicate things in other ways. ^^ So I think that this project will need a very detailed script of both the story and also the VFX, since all the backdrops will be 3D rendered. I have narrowed the story down to four different (virtual) locations though, so it shouldn’t be too complicated. Parallax will be a small(ish) project which we work on while we plan next year’s huge project Island of Illusion, which will be 5-10 times bigger than G.E. I haven’t had time to chat with Markus in a while, so he might have some new story outlines or fantastic plans too. ^^

Parts of Parallax will be created by my students, so in a way it will be a fun school project. I think that we will need about 4-6 students as 3D artists for this project. I will try to finish the first rough version of the script and then hand it over to Markus and let him do his magic (that he does so well) and improve it. ^^

We have many ideas, but since time truly flies I think that we will work on these three films probably until the end of 2011.

by intelligentlight

P.S
Oh, and the photo above is just some gothic art which I found inspirational. It has similar colorgrading to G.E.


Feb 27 2010

‘Gothland Elysium’ official trailer and Post Mortem

Hi again,

Our trailer for G.E is now online and we hope that you like it! You can watch it on our trailer-site: http://www.intelligent-light.com

or on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QOJ5KCzUPOA

or on Vimeo: http://vimeo.com/9768596

I wrote a ‘Post Mortem’ about this trailer when I finished it last week and I have attached it below here.

Trailer ‘POST MORTEM’ (Feb, 2010)

I initially named this trailerproject ‘No Regrets’, because I wanted to create a trailer which I would be proud of and not see things in it, afterwards, that I wished I would have done differently. I had a pretty good idea of the design of the trailer from the start, but I still played around a lot to get a better feel of it. I wanted it to be a mix of a movie trailer and a music video for many reasons. One of those reasons was that it works for this type of art-house movie and another reason was because neither Markus or I wanted to make a typical movie trailer. There are too many of those already. When we started this project back in ‘08 we decided not to make a typical Hollowood:ish movie, because in most cases that equals “Fail” for us. So a narrator with a cigar-voice, instead of the intro texts, was a big NO for this trailer.

The trailer was cut and rendered in 1080p and we wanted a trailer that would look good both on a huge LED TV, but also on mobile devices such as iPods or iPhones. And it does! ^^

After I found the song ‘Intangible’ on Jamendo.com I knew that this was the song for the trailer. It had the same speed and flow as the film. The real soundtrack is done, but we can’t use it online at the moment, and I do not know if this song will make it to the final film - but I hope so. I had another song from the start, but it was a bit too depressing. At first I was gonna use just one song, but I found that the intro with the texts were more creepy with that scarier song, so I kept the design with two different songs.

The intro texts were a lot longer in the beginning of the project and I knew that they had to be shortened down. So Markus and I discussed a few options and he helped me to cut it down. I wanted the texts to be timed just right, so they stayed there not too short and not too long. Both Markus and I could read them just fine and I eventually tried the intro with many students and they could also read the texts before they faded away - which was good.

This whole project was a fun educational experience to learn how to produce movies on “the next level” and I created the trailer before the actual film edit to learn this new and modern production pipeline. So I wanted a trailer that would reflect something that was somewhat similar to the final film, productionwise. It was a lot of fun and I have spent around 50-60 hours on this trailer - including everything except filming it of course - and I have no real regrets about it now. I now know the tools a lot better and I feel more confident about starting an editing project that will end on somewhere around 500 hours haha… Since I created it before the actual edit, I haven’t even touched any of the audio files from the film. I initially did some tests with lowering the music at certain points and adding audio, but it took away the feel and flow of the entire trailer. So I didn’t continue down that road. That’s why it’s more of a music video trailer now. For those who miss conversations in the trailer, you will hear 30 minutes of that in the final cut. ^^

We have pretty much filmed everything we need for this film now so that part is basically done. So whatever that is “not working” or “could have been done in in a different way” we will learn from and take with us to the next project. This is how G.E is now and we will do our very best to make a good edit of the entire film. We initially didn’t get the people we had casted for this project and I had very little time to cast new ones. Both Anna (Linn) and Nils (Tim) are two of my students and Miki (Natalie) is Anna’s friend. Nils had some acting experience through amateur theatre, but Anna and Miki had none. But they were all really good and better than we had hoped, so when watching this please consider that this is their first movie appearance and acting experience. ^^

When watching something like this a few people are reminded of typical forest-horror movies such as ‘The Blair Witch Project’ and I thought I’d address that too. The only thing our movie has in common with that, storywise, is the forest - nothing else. ‘Gothland Elysium’ has three different stories entangled into one and is in many ways a more deeper and complex story than Blair Witch. It also has many references to an old famous book. Markus explained it this way in ‘The Boom Brothers’ page above:

“Event though the group’s first film “Gothland Elysium” is another attempt at creating a minimalistic horror movie, it will also be open for more than one interpretation. But recurring themes in the team’s productions deal with inner struggles, the occult, despair, unrequited love, loss and sorrow.”

On top of that I’d say the movie is about love, hate, jealousy and how at certain times and places that can conjure…something.

So I wanted to show this in the trailer: Three teenagers go camping. All seems fine. Something happens. Did their cellphone get the same message as the people who died before did? Why is only Tim in half of the trailer and why is Natalie making Linn walk deeper into the forest? What is Natalie pointing at in the end and the peak of the trailer? Hopefully after asking this the audience would like to see the movie to see what actually happened to these Linn, Tim and Natalie.

Thank you sharing this experience with us.

by intelligentlight


Feb 10 2010

Beginning of the End

Yes, we are indeed back. I had planned to post this last week (and obviously didn’t ^^), but now - after reading Marcus great post below - I felt the need to continue these topics.

The complicated ending has been completed and after several exciting tests I believe that it works very well. It’s in dire need of VFX, but so are a lot of the scenes and I don’t worry about that now.

I have also spent some time getting the whole post production pipeline up and running.  There are many complex softwares involved and I am working on an official trailer for Gothland Elysium as a mere test of this pipeline/process. This trailer will show a lot more of the film than the earlier mood teasers and present one of the three stories from the film. The trailer, in its current form, is about 50% done and I am hoping to finalize it by mid February. This trailer will most likely have a production quality similar to the finished film. When this new trailer is online I will start working on the first rough cut of the film. Then it’s colour grading, Chroma Key, compositing, other VFX, audio, foley, ADR, music/soundtrack and endless tweaking to go. That will take a while… ^^

Eventhough we might show this film to a larger audience, we will not ask you for feedback afterwards. This project has been a very “educational” and rewarding experience (and a a fantastic ride). When the film is done we will like it and hopefully you will too. ^^

by intelligentlight


Feb 6 2010

Resumption

No news is good news, right? Wrong. Well, not really wrong either. Luckily, most things can be explained. It has been a long time (Relatively speaking.) since we posted anything here, and the sole reason for the hiatus has been the “holidays” and “getting back on track”. It’s a new year and decade after all.

First things first - Intelligentlight shot the final scene on January the 24th and edited a test-ending for the film which was presented on the 31st…

It was tickling - To say the least.

A heavy stone fell from our hearts and the last demon has probably been exorcised.

On a far more personal note there are just some lines of thinking that baffles one beyond belief in a bad way - If one is not supposed to get emotionally attached to a project, then why the fuck do it at all? Why even try if you are not going to be true to yourself about it? It’s exactly this kind of “professionalism” that has efficiently destroyed a significantly large part of what film-making is all about: Expressing something. The moment you start listening to “the critics”, things are bound to go down the toilet. First of all, people who are not directly involved in the process know just about fuck all regarding the reasons or objectives behind the project. And unless these people have the role as producers or whatever, their opinion doesn’t count in the least.

Adjusting one’s ways to please one or two whining assholes out there is not, has never been, and will never be an option.

by Markus


Dec 21 2009

The end is near

My “brilliant idea”, which Marcus mentioned below ^^, was really the only option for us and it’s a good road to walk down on. We are very close to the finishline now and all of our worries are gone. All the scenes which we had to shoot - during 2009 - are now done. We will shoot the end scenes in mid January of 2010 and some other scenes during spring; my guess is end of February or March. During that time I should have put together a first cut of Gothland Elysium and hopefully even a final cut with ADR, music and VFX.

The Gothland Elysium project was a way for us to “get back in the game” and basically a practice project (but a serious one). So far everything has turned out even better than we had hoped and Gothland Elysium will be completed. But whatever happens to this little film, we will always be proud of it and cherish the good and the bad memories from the days of production.

Lastly, I would like to take the opportunity to introduce our cast and thank them for their hard work this year. From both me and Marcus: thank you all so much for helping us making our script into a film (see cast pics below).

Thank you for visiting our production blog and your continued support. Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year!

by intelligentlight


Miki Terasaki as “Natalie”

Anna Hedqvist as “Linn”

Nils Bossius Klintenberg as “Tim”


Dec 4 2009

Decisive through coercion

Each and every day the last month have consisted of barely comprehensible fractions of episodes mostly spent in a darkness that just doesn’t seem to let up. (We had exactly three sun hours during the entire November.) It has been pitch dark when I’ve forced myself out of bed with greater and greater effort, each time cursing over the fact that it has to be impossible to go into hibernation until April. And it’s pitch black when I leave the office building. (Which on one hand has high windows, but they happen to face a mostly empty asphalted area beneath a mostly dark and clouded sky.) These episodes merge together in an impeding vortex of  thoughts and impressions, making even seemingly easy decisions turn gradually harder and senseless. They shouldn’t be. It has almost come to the point where the business hours have been a chaotic vacation and the spare time has become monotonous and soul-shatteringly boring work that temporarily only can end by suffering through it. Without any doubt has this been an exhausting trip through an unusually uninspiring part of hyperspace.

The last and missing part of the film has naturally been a big part of this void-wasteland merry-go-round. The  project has had a very frightening and accurate striking distance and hasn’t been easy to steer away from mentally. But seeing the chances to complete the film fading away on the trail of a bolting demon is what has been most frustrating to endure.

This far.

That is until intelligentlight came up with a plausible and brilliant idea that also seems possible to carry out. This was definitely a turning point after the latest setbacks. (Scheduling conflicts, economic issues and so on.) We may not be on the track yet (Seeing how we have to plan the next step around this idea.), but we know where the bloody track is again.

by Markus


Nov 27 2009

Vivid nights and scary days

This was a vivid night.

I was really sleepy when I got home from work yesterday; I have been working nights way too many times lately. Therefore the night ended very early last night - I went to bed at 8:30 p.m. (after a really nice hot bath) and I was planning to enjoy a book for an hour or so…but failed that miserably and fell asleep the instant my head hit the pillow…

…I slept non-stop until 7:30 a.m. the following morning and I had some really, really vivid dreams that night. I think that most of them occured maybe the last 4-5 hours of sleep. I remember a lot from the dreams and I had forgotten that I dream a lot of interesting dreams when I sleep longer. That’s not a really hard equation really… Anyway, I especially remember two dreams and I don’t think that these were intertwining, but the last one was so - extremely - vivid that I could probably describe most people and locations from it for at least a half an hour. And none of people I met or the places I visited exist in real life. That dream was an awesome trip. That got me thinking today. Many of my short stories and most of the movie scripts/story outlines that I have written, or currently writing, are loosely based on my dreams. Broken Circle III: PARALLAX (which we will start to work on during spring of 2010) is based on a dream I had about six months ago and about half the story of ISLAND OF ILLUSION (2011) is based on a dream I had about a month ago. When I got home today I spent 20 minutes just writing last nights dream into a bullet-based story outline and I called it THE CITY OF GLASS. Maybe that too will be a shortfilm someday. I know that I’d like it. *laughs*

I know for a fact that Marcus also has very vivid dreams sometimes and maybe that’s it…maybe that’s our thing, maybe that is the theme of the Boom Brothers? ^^

Dreams are very interesting to analyze and while some people think that dreams are just the brain cleaning up and “defragging” the impressions from the day, others think that we visit alternative dimensions, while we sleep, and that we are just as awake in those as we are during the day. I’m sort of in-between these theories at the moment and just a happy observer. I have also worked on a Swedish TV-series which had dreams as a topic, so maybe I - or we - should dig deeper in this field…

While having some nice dreams lately I’ve had a few nightmare daydreams. They are not many, but not few either. I quite often get reminded of that Gothland Elysium is not yet finished. We still have about of weekend of work left of filming to complete until we can sit back and enjoy Christmas (and start editing yay). Most of us - me included - are just too busy these days to have free weekends and this one is not different. Half of this weekend will be spent working on my thesis and the rest - hopefully - some much needed R&R.

I had a brief crash course in script writing with my students yesterday and I showed them some small parts from my scripts, as examples, and while discussing these projects I once again was reminded how time truly flies and that we got to finish the Gothland Elysium project as soon as humanly possible.

That crash course was a lot of fun, but that was a scary day.

by intelligentlight


Nov 12 2009

Dream in the fields of green

A very strange and slowly suffocating mental hangover has been plaguing some of us through the longest and darkest nights of the year so far. This was indeed very much expected. Everything else, good and bad, that happens to be anchored in the “real world” is just a tiny straw on a vast and unexplored field.

So where do we go from here and how do we get there? I guess there is one last destination on this surreal trip. Resting or relaxing is not an option until it has been reached.

by Markus


Nov 8 2009

Burning in the red

The solid darkness was closing in today on all levels. It didn’t manage to bring everybody down into the swamp, because luckily, it can successfully be fought off with a burning overdose of sheer lunacy. That is something that has been escalating during this journey since day one. And today, we were drawn even closer to the core.

Of all prolonged shooting days so far, the fifth and “last” (At least in what now is widely well-known as the “filming area”.) proved to be the most difficult and exhausting one. We had more or less dreamed real nightmares around the execution of the “driving scene” in the beginning of the film and had already (With less than noticeable success.) tried to figure out how to shoot it - Especially since none of us (With the exception of Intelligentlight.) actually have a driver’s licence. But this is not the Real World - This is the world of moving images. Under creeping dread, we realized that there is nobody who says that we can’t do it three separate takes. So that’s how we did it. And it sort of worked, even if I had to film and record the sound at the same time. Who needs CGI when you can cheat properly?

This amazing experience was followed by a short lunch break (Where my beverage mysteriously transformed itself from a state of being lovely to becoming stale and virtually undrinkable piss.) with the discussion topics bordering on the criminally insane. (If those had materialized as a “cast and crew”-commentary track on a DVD or something, we’d all be locked up before midnight.) Well, on to the aforementioned difficulties. Of all the millions of square-meters of forest, we just had to pick the wettest, most bug-infested and geologically most awkward spots a few hundred meters away from no man’s land. The thing that made the whole business worse was that we still had to keep up the illusion that it at least still was “early fall” instead of “it’ll snow any bloody day now”. Which meant that we had to avoid filming the millions of brown leaves on the soaked ground. But at least we got some nice “Norwegian Black Metal album cover”-shots of the coniferous forest. The Weather Goddesses were on our side again - No wind and no icy bursts of rain. Just the autumnal Gothlandian paradise. (Oh, yeah.)

One scene took much longer to film than it was intented. We didn’t fall behind the schedule, but it was somewhere around this point I started to feel the “forces” trying to turn the whole thing on its head once again - The very same forces that had driven us out there in the first place all those months ago. It became gradually more and more difficult to set up the scenes and maintain what was left of the so-called focus. And a few times, everybody’s collectively subsiding energy more or less forced the whole process to a halt. (“But freezing temperatures and wet feet ain’t refreshing either.”, says Captain Obvious.) It was clear that we all were getting more and more tired as the hours crept closer and closer to the sunset. And more scenes needed some instantaneous improvising under undeniably fucked up discharges of knuckle-biting insanity. (However, everything must have turned for the better when we saw two beautiful ravens on the light-gray sky, because everybody knows that ravens bring good fortune.) All during the jubilant ride that ends with a frontal collision.

The last scene for today was filmed under not very nice conditions, and it was simultaneously also the most critical one. I more or less held my breath all the time. But judging from the dailies, the actors (And the camera operator.) nailed it like a high-powered nailgun. It looked awesome nevertheless. That very moment said everything.

It hasn’t been said too many times yet, but the appreciation the crew feels towards the actors can neither be expressed nor described. While it certainly was a relief for everybody to wrap things up “over there”, the addiction to the brief and impermanent visits to the parallel world will once more show how unbearable separation angst can be when it surfaces. In the worst moment possible.

by Markus


Nov 6 2009

“Island of Illusion”

…is the name of one of our future projects. ^^

Things are looking good for “Gothland Elysium” (G.E) again! While we wait for time to fly, so that we can get the last days of filming done, we have been working on various things (just like Markus mentioned below). I am really looking forward to reading his new script “The Switchman” by the way!

Anyway, back to the point: my new script is called “IoI” (Island of Illusion) - at the moment - and about half of this film is based on a strange and interesting dream I had around two weeks ago. I figured that I better write all this down while I still remembered it and I have. But now, after a few nights of writing, the story has become a lot more interesting. This script feels really promising so far and it is about 40% finished now. Most of my free time, in the following weeks, will be spent working on G.E though and I hope that we can start editing in the beginning of December. So I’m not really sure when I have will have a first draft complete for IoI, maybe sometime during December. We’ll see, G.E is priority one now - but I also want to finish the IoI-story to see if Markus likes it. ^^

The script for IoI will be around 30 pages (i.e around 30 minutes long) and have around 3-4x more actors/characters compared to G.E. My guess is around 40 characters, but only 3-4 mains so not that complicated. IoI will be a much bigger production, but my gut feeling now says that we actually can get this film done. It is still easier to create than PARABELLUM, which we will hopefully have enough resources, cash and people to create sometime during 2012. ^^ (Only time will tell…) Anyway, after I had written 8 pages of the IoI-script - and finished the introduction - I wanted to create a graphical theme/profile for the film and also a concept poster (hey, it’s fun OK ^^). You can see that one below and I hope that you like it. As always, in Firefox, right-click the image and choose the top in the list to view the image in it’s original uploaded size (the online PNG is a small version) And yes, there is a good reason why the cross isn’t reflected in the water. ^^

by intelligentlight


Nov 2 2009

In delineative form

There’s no denying it. It just won’t let go.

While we now do our uttermost to kill time in the most rampant way imaginable (That is, until we can get back “out there” to film the remaining scenes for this year’s project.) the edginess and the expectation is driving us up on the walls. Meanwhile, we’re keeping some kind of distance to it all. (With the sole purpose of avoiding getting devoured by the contagious and exhilarating one-two punch energies around all things “Gothland Elysium”.) So we decided to begin planning the project(s) for 2010 and beyond.

So far, we have both been writing down some new ideas that will eventually begin to form one or two new screenplays. Intelligentlight is working round the clock (It seems!) on the script for a short film entitled “Island Of Illusion” - A horror tale grounded in mysticism and alternate dimensions / worlds. We exchanged some e-mails earlier tonight and he spontaneously feels that it could turn into something really good, original and imaginative. And I have began exorcising ideas for another screenplay with the working title “The Switchman”. It’s a psychological thriller / drama that centers around a bunch of very damaged individuals in a neighborhood that begs to be wiped off the face of the Earth.

So let’s see where these winding roads leads us.

by Markus


Oct 29 2009

Gothland Elysium - Official teaser three

We decided to give you some colour in the last teaser. ^^

This third (and FINAL) teaser was created for the fans of the Gothland Elysium project and does not represent the final quality of the film. (This is a low quality 720p-version of the original 1080p video.)

It’s fun, yet challanging to create teasers for a short film. A trailer is almost out of the question, because it would probably give most of the movie away. I might try to create on later on anyway. So, these teasers are well…basically just a tease for our 30 min:ish short film “GE”. And…my guess is that this is the last that you will see (in video) from this project for about 3-4 months. The editing, ADR, sound, foley, music and VFX will take that long because we all have regular jobs which always comes first. But please stay tuned! ^^

The teaser is available in HD on Youtube, Vimeo and Facebook video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czH7Juj652o&fmt=22
http://www.vimeo.com/7317705
http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=188405004601

Enjoy!

by intelligentlight


Oct 28 2009

The race against time

The race is indeed ON. As Markus mentioned below: we have hit a brick wall once again and time is truly running out. It’s hard to race against time (read: autumn/fall), when you can only get everyone together on Sundays. And not even every sunday. But I’m still thinking positive, we will finish this (short)film. ^^

We now have just 4-5 more different scenes/locations to shoot. These are quite small, so I think that we only need 1-2 more days of hard work and then everything is shot. However, it’s really crucial that we shoot 3 of these scenes before winter hits us in the face. The other scenes need to be created during late fall or even winter; so we actually need to wait to shoot those.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed once again.

by intelligentlight


Oct 28 2009

Clouded horizons

Once again, the stranglehold of the so called system, its unforgivning rules and the circumstances have altered the plans for this project.

May it take a turn for the best very soon.

by Markus


Oct 26 2009

State of disgrace

The scheduling conflicts just keep forming a noose that tightens around our necks. To direct, set up the camera angles, shoot the scenes, record the sound and so on isn’t really a one man job just like being electrocuted isn’t really “getting warm”. Eventual filming this week can basically and only be done during one afternoon (Which is a couple of hours. We’ve got one hour less daylight now “thanks” to winter time.), which also happens to be on Wednesday. This puts some (?) of us in a bit of a logistic squeeze. There are a handful of scenes that don’t necessarily depend on the entire crew, but it’s not really easy to do any of them without everybody present.

Even if I could bet both my last and stolen money that intelligentlight could pull it off anyway, it’s an utter disgrace not to be able to help. But no matter what, desperate times usually call for desperate solutions.

by Markus


Oct 23 2009

Fantastic (camera) news

I have kept my fingers crossed about this for almost a year now and I was beginning to give up hope, but Canon did it! The EOS 5D Mark II will soon be able to film in 24p/25p! This is truly fantastic news!

“Canon to give 5D Mark II a cinema boost”
http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-10379373-264.html

by intelligentlight


Oct 22 2009

Doing time behind invisible bars

We have, ahead of us, two quite long key scenes + the slightly shorter ending before we move on to the intro and the outro. After that, there are some even shorter scenes that we pretty much could film in the middle of the winter during any day if they can’t be done “here and now”.

The preparations and the discussions build up the anticipation by the minute, but at the same time, the very same anticipation takes turns to show its insufferable side on which it’s near-impossible to figure out a way to “do some time” before it will be possible to escape out there again.

by Markus


Oct 21 2009

Gothland Elysium - Official teaser two

Yes, indeed! We have now created a second teaser for the fans of the Gothland Elysium  project. Like the first one, this tease does not represent the final quality of the film.

The teaser is available in HD on Youtube, Vimeo and Facebook video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RIxz1×5b6Zg&fmt=22
http://www.vimeo.com/7185045
http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=181601369601

Enjoy!

by intelligentlight


Oct 21 2009

Brief disclosure

The second official teaser was edited together by intelligentlight while we exchanged some scattered thoughts and suggestions during yesterday evening.

It’s now on-line at the usual places.

And it has one of the outlining and revealing moments from the film - A moment that says more than a thousand words.

by Markus


Oct 20 2009

Overload

I think I somehow have managed to re-assemble the fragments of the grinding thoughts while frantically sorting all the impressions from last Sunday. The well-known, but not very welcomed, insomnia struck like lightning while I awaited… I’m not sure what, exactly… And there are always the attempts to get rid of it. It took a long walk down to the misty waterfront (The post below, that mentions the words “backup” and the magic number that quite obviously is “3″, probably helped too!) following a graveyard shift which was spent lying on the floor and listening to some Heavy Metal - Everything to chase the obtrusive thoughts down the road. But of course I just had to go to the computer at 4 A.M. and find three more teaser-concepts for the film from the co-director / co-D.O.P. / editor in the mail. (Bye for now, “Dreamland”. See you who the hell knows when!) The excitement got gradually harder to contain, especially at work where you’re supposed to behave a bit “civilized” and where you can’t start rambling like an even more obvious borderline-maniac about composition, camera angles and actors’ expressions. (Nobody would find it interesting in the slightest… No, we’re not creating “high art” or anything… But for several reasons, we simply just need and have to delve into this project full throttle.)

As for that Sunday now, two days ago, something magical did happen on the set. At some point, the three lead actors in the movie made that intangible transition from themselves and into their characters. I’m not sure if the saying is true - That “the guy who plays the devil actually has to be a bit like the devil”, but they all simply became the persons that they had decided to play. These characters were born after we had written the final synopsis back in October / November last year. For us, they were already “real”. (Well, as real as fidgets of the imagination can be.) But it was still astonishing and enigmatic to see them come alive. It was an assault on all senses. (And I mean that in the best way possible.) A mental overload. (Especially when they switched to some method acting and characterization that isn’t even in the script - That was just fucking awesome. We are humbled beyond words.) It’s like writing a story and suddenly meeting the characters face to face IRL when you least expect it. I mean, what the hell could possibly be more efficient for tearing down the thin veils that separate reality from illusion? (Apart from maybe hard, hallucinatory drugs?)

There is a book in the film (”The Divine Comedy”) that we refer to visually and metaphorically in a way. (Except that “Dante” is a chick… And… Except that… There really is no “Dante”.) But the physical book in the movie is in fact one by Swedish filmmaker Kay Pollak, and it’s called (translated) “To Choose Joy”. One of the actresses read a certain paragraph from the book aloud and a crushingly overwhelming insight dawned on me: That there was no other time when this part of the film could have been made. Each and every moment, good, vexing and awful, had built itself from within towards this particular event. I mean, think about it - We finally got the best possible weather that we could have killed for with the deadline of Mother Nature breathing down our necks, the best atmosphere oscillating between that of a joyride and the chaos in side-splitting lunacy, a well-prepared crew and possibly even more well-prepared actors. (Not that I’m saying that anybody wasn’t well-prepared, but I was a bit… Off…)

And why was that book there in the first place? No idea. It was as far as I remember a gift and I have seen it in several copies in various places, but it could also have been any book in the world that I created the fake cover for. It was also pointed out - That “To Choose Joy” pretends to be / fills in for the “The Divine Comedy”. I’ve begun to realize what makes certain film-makers exploring the same themes over and over again until they have carved out a niche for themselves. It must be the drug. And the only way to feed the addiction is to keep chasing it, no matter what.

by Markus


Oct 19 2009

Suspended animation

Well almost, but we made it to the warm car eventually!

The third day of filming was truly a battle against the cold (yet sunny) weather, fatigue, light, and time. The entire day was one fast race (with some evil opponents)! While we shot the last scene our last camera battery was dying and most of us had - due to a very long day of hard work - trouble standing up. But we made it! Markus describes the day in a superb way below, so I won’t go into more detail and basically say the same thing in this entry. Below you can find some behind-the-scenes “Kodak moments” from yesterday. ^^

The 15 gigs of data from yesterday is now on three different hard drives and that feels very good. I have looked through the dailies and in whole I am quite pleased with the result. The majority of the shots look really good; if not even better than from day one! We had really nice - yet difficult - lighting conditions yesterday with a lot of sun and (annoying) clouds. That changed the lighting every minute or so and a few of the scenes have some overexposed parts, but nothing that can’t be “fixed in post”. Some scenes simply look amazing and these are right out of the camera! The pro-lens really captured the light in a beautiful way.

We still have quite a few shots left to shoot and time is running out now, but today I am not worried one bit - today I am happy because of yesterday. ^^

by intelligentlight


Oct 19 2009

…in the ascendant

Yesterday was a clear day with exceptionally favourable light for filming. Those conditions can’t “possibly” be re-created artificially. And last night’s plummet into the real world (Followed by uneasy sleep with very strange dreams contaminated by warped images and sounds telegraphed from the passed day.) somehow is reflected in the weather today - Ominous dark clouds, the unnatural cold and the intense rain that feels like a cold shower. (Both literally and figuratively.)

It once again defies expressions of near-euphoria to work with people who counterbalance one’s own numerous weaknesses, shortcomings and mental overturns, especially during a treacherously addictive undertaking like this one turned out to be. For zero to max in one magic moment. It all comes down to avoiding the one-way rollercoaster-rides straight down into the abyss. This project finally feels very real like a scorching fire - You need the warmth badly, but you get severely burned at the same time. Beyond the point of no return, it’s impossible to shake the reflections around the whole experience even for one whole hour - No matter how profoundly healing / damaging it is. The presence of the Paradise unseen creeps back into the mind with unmatched precision, slowly turning this day into a very long and empty detour back to something that may feel “safe”, but that insidiously looms in a corroding state of stagnation. (Yeah. Those terminal and with time more and more obvious “warning signs” in life that usually hint that a change is very much needed.)

I can’t wait to see the dailies, continue the “endless” discussions, plan the next step, get back to filming and everything that’s in between - In other words: Sense the motion that was felt yesterday. That ride into that parallel world. It’s a new drug with the characteristics of others drugs - The rush strengthens you momentarily, but it will ultimately leave you weakened and shattered. I for sure feel the withdrawal symptoms right now…

by Markus


Oct 18 2009

Re-constructing Paradise

The third shooting day came and went. Six hours non-stop of setting up the scenes, shooting (Not drugs. And nobody got to drink any shots either.), improvising and slowly submerging into a parallel world felt like a whole week. And it turned out to be a proper endurance test that began with me giving directions to the wrong (Of course.) parking lot and ended with everybody cold and tired enough to drive us all to uppers.

For me personally, the night before was a mix of short periods of anxiety-infested sleep and more or less constant white-knuckle worries around what foul trick misfortune would play on us this weekend. But sometimes no news is good news and the phone call from the second Boom Brother around 10 A.M. contained nothing that makes one wonder whether we’re cursed or not. Our crew was much smaller this time (Yeah, all right!), we had only one camera (Two would have helped, obviously.) and we had less time to finish the key scenes.

So the half-hour drive in a packed car ended about a kilometer from where we stopped filming last time. Instead of a quarter of a kilometer. (I’m glad nobody stabbed me for this, because it was all my fault.) So about 20 minutes behind the schedule we picked up where we left. The first concern was the surroundings and if they had changed so much in a month that it would cause a jarring continuity fuck-up. But it looked great through the camera and then we started. One hour went by fast and we were back on the clock again, despite the few interruptions (Both intentional and unintentional.) from passers-by.

Two hours later, we had moved ahead to the part of the film that has loads of static shots in one specific location. We ploughed through a majority of the script under the positive influence and the equally positive and highly infectious insanity courtesy of our great and amazingly patient actors. It’s almost like time stopped for a while. (And I kind of wish it had, considering that this was a balls-to-the-wall attempt to get somewhere after the aforementioned setbacks.) Last time out on the “battlefield”, we thought we had been lucky like the most successful card-sharpers in the Wild West for finding the actors who really fit in their parts like hands in gloves. This day cemented that feeling at least a dozen times over. Now, we know that this film couldn’t be made without them. And it wouldn’t have been a fraction as madness-inducingly fun. Sometimes, I had to pinch myself in the arm because I frankly stopped trusting my own senses at one point… And furthermore, it’s now quite easy to see how it’s possible to get violently sucked into something and not be able to get out. It’s like that old saying: “Everybody builds castles in the air, but only drunks move into them.” But either way, the fathomless gratitude that we, the film-makers, feel can’t be explained in words. (Especially not today on the set.)

After a short lunch-break around 2 P.M., we proceeded with the filming. We were constantly reminded of the fact that it’s mid-October - Especially when the sun started to set quicker and quicker. When the sands, the batteries and everybody’s energy levels finally were running out, we quickly shot the scenes that we had to shoot right there and now. And even if everybody sooner or later starts to lose focus, I think we nailed it. The temperature started to turn from “a bit too cold” to “fucking freezing” around 5.30, which pretty much was a good sign that it was time wrap things up. We quickly went through the script once more, and didn’t find any scenes that we had missed during the course of the last hours’ filming. (It would be so very unnecessary to have to go back there once more for a handful of shots. It’s not exactly walking distance to the set for any of us.) The next shooting day will most definitely be somewhere in the Göteborg-area.

The darkness approached fast and the fifteen minute hike back to the car was a very long one back to the real world again - The bags and the equipment suddenly felt heavy like hell, the craving for coffee started to be a real problem, the idea of someone’s paradise was nowhere in sight anymore and the milk-acid started stinging like, well, acid in arms and legs. But it wasn’t all that awful to be back in the warm car and on the road home.

I can only conclude this entry by saying that it was a surreal and satisfying day on all levels and that I once again hope that everyone had a good time. I’m not sure if our temporary bad luck has turned to good, but if it has, today was the ultimate proof of that.

by Markus


Oct 17 2009

Gothland Elysium - Official teaser one

This early teaser is created for the fans of the Gothland Elysium  project and does not represent the final quality of the film. This teaser is also censored due to copyright restrictions (and to keep promises) and also because we don’t want make our soundtrack official just yet. ^^

With that said, we hope that you enjoy this one!

The teaser is available in HD on Youtube, Vimeo and Facebook video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5FqOCknl_M&fmt=22
http://www.vimeo.com/7116446
http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=178997019601

by intelligentlight


Oct 14 2009

Future schedule

As filming is coming to an end on the Gothland Elysium project we have already started various post production tests. The editing, VFX, ADR/sound and music should take at least 2-3 months of time since we all have regular jobs. So I expect that we should have an early - and somewhat final - cut sometime during January of 2010.

After Gothland Elysium has been finished and distributed to various filmfestivals we will start pre-production on our next projects. Our current schedule can be found here (or by pressing “Projects” in the top menu):

http://blog.intelligent-light.com/?page_id=619

Our next update will hopefully be a happy one about the final big day of filming Gothland Elysium. ^^

by intelligentlight


Oct 14 2009

The Grand Finale

We are back on track now (read earlier posts by Markus) and the grand finale will be this Sunday. After that we only have a few seperate scenes to film and those can be created within hours. The production has now been postponed over two weeks and the fall is here. I’m not worried about the colours in the forest though, because we can fix that with colour grading in post production. ^^ It is however a bit colder now, but the weather on Sunday seems OK! We’ll post news about the 3rd day on Sunday night or on Monday.

by intelligentlight


Oct 12 2009

Fall

To say that we’re relieved after an agonizing and very long Sunday is the understatement of the fucking century so far. (And nothing takes away from the fact that it’s heart-rending that bad things always seem to happen to people who simply don’t deserve it.)

Either way, filming continues next Sunday over an even tighter schedule than before. However, the very autumnal atmosphere may cause a bit of a continuity problem, plus that it’s not exactly warm and pleasant outdoors anymore. (Not that it actually has been that for three years or so.) But everything will go as planned this time, the almost jinx-like obstructions notwithstanding.

by Markus


Oct 11 2009

The silence is deafening

Up to now, I haven’t “sort of” believed in bad luck…

But seriously… Some things that happen are just excruciating on so many levels…

by Markus


Oct 4 2009

Down

Due to the intervention of chance (Severe misfortune, more like.), today’s filming had to be cancelled without the slightest doubt.

We are deeply saddened by the reasons behind this and the subsequent uncertainty that inevitably follows, and we can merely hope that everything is going to be all right for those involved…

by Markus


Sep 29 2009

“Gothland Elysium”

Yes, that’s the name of the game. Our film finally has a name. The Boom Brothers describe the name/title in the following way:

“The title is a reference to where the actual story takes place, the original Gothland in Southern Sweden, as well as an allusion to the mythological resting place of the souls mentioned in numerous books. The events that unfold in Gothland create the “underworld” in a purely metaphysical sense.”

Below you can find my 4th movie poster concept/variation for this project. Please note: This version is a bit too much “fairy tale” and quite a big leap from the original poster design, but it was created just for the fun of it. I imagine that we will have 4-6 different poster variations, for this film, and that excludes the original poster in english/japanese/french/italian versions! ^^

This one was +2 hours of fun in Photoshop and I hope that you like it.

(In Firefox, right-click the image and click the top row to view the image in 100% scale).

by intelligentlight


Sep 29 2009

Locus desperatus

Ladies, gentlemen and everybody else - We finally have a title for the movie and it feels like we have exited the “hopeless passage” now. Some blood, sweat and tears were shed (Tears, mostly.) by the litre before the frustration lead on to the trusted, classic and well-overused “exclusion method”. (Which blows sometimes.) The title is of course different from the working one that we’ve been using for way too long now. It may not be the world’s most original or unique one, but the key point is that it’s refered to in the dialogue as well as it’s linked to the place where the story takes place. (And it doesn’t generate any search results on Google, so hey…)

The name of the film will be revealed when the first concept poster(s) and artwork have been done. (The script has also been finished for real now.)

by Markus


Sep 28 2009

Next stop… No, seriously, what’s this place called?

Yesterday, around midday, we looked through the filmed material again and rendered a few clips to see what the movie could look like in Cinemascope and with a classic Technicolor-look. The excitement was already quite badly concealed. (At least no accidents happened. And nobody got injured.)

The rest of the evening was wasted getting seriously riled up over still not having a great title - Easily around 120 suggestions, and not one that at least didn’t generate a four-digit number of search results on Google. Some of them could have worked well had there not been one or even several movies with those exact titles. But we formally settled for using the ficticious name for the location as the title - Granted under the circumstance that it doesn’t exist already. I have exactly one suggestion left before I run out of ideas. And we desperately need a title before the second shooting day since one of the lead characters will “explain” the title of the film.

by Markus


Sep 27 2009

A few postcards from the Edge

As Markus stated below: we didn’t miss the off-ramp and I wasn’t the one who said “Shit, I have absolutely no fucking idea where we are anymore!”. ^^

Except for the longer trip to the location (which didn’t happen), yesterday was a real success. It was basically just like a long stroll through the forest, only I usually don’t bring this much heavy equipment to the hiking trails. Anyhoo, we got all the shots which we wanted to film and we also found some new exciting and scary locations for day three!

When we got back to the HQ we checked all the shots and also the ones from day one. Everything is OK and we don’t have to recreate any of those shots again. Stellar! And now everything is backed up on at least four different locations, so the data is quite safe.

Day three will be a lot of work and that date is not official yet. It will be after we have done it. That day will hopefully be the last day “on location” and the intro + outro could  - if necessary - be filmed someplace completely different.

And yes…we still don’t have a name for the film, but we are getting there now…after eleven months…and I believe that we are now on the right track! The film “LDE” will have a proper name soon™.

by intelligentlight


Sep 26 2009

The road back, sort of…

Well, it’s another Saturday, which means - Back to work on the… Project! (This week could not have gone fast enough. And we still haven’t been able to name the film.)

Just like we anticipated, today’s excursion was a fairly easy ride without too much teethgrinding or other heartaches. And the weather was exceptional for the season. We set out to do the “postcard”-shots that link the episodes together in the film itself. Yes. Smooth sailing all the way. No obstacles anywhere. But on the other hand, it just wasn’t the same without the rest of the crew and the actors present. (Just like “day” isn’t the same as “night”.) But on the other (Third?) hand, we only filmed the static establishing shots and wouldn’t have wanted to bore anybody to tears with us just walking around the locations and going through the script for the umpteenth time.

And everything went like clockwork and just as planned. On our way to the filming location, we didn’t miss the one and only intersection on the freeway. We didn’t miss to turn right there at all. Neither did we drive 15 kilometers in the opposite (I.e. wrong.) direction. And on top of that, we had no use for the GPS whatsoever since we knew exactly where we were going. We also have to be very clear about the fact that nobody uttered the words: “Shit, I have absolutely no fucking idea where we are anymore!” either… The GPS? Oh, we were just checking if it still worked after all these… Days… I mean - If any of this had happened, we’d have felt really stupid considering we were there just six days ago…! But for some no doubt Twilight Zone-related reason, it did take around 45 minutes to get to the location instead of 25 like last time.

But the establishing shots, we did - In glorious Cinemascope. And we also recorded some ambient soundscapes as well in the forest.

Back at someone else’s place, we looked through the footage and came to the conclusion that this already is the most rewarding and most enjoyable project we’ve been a part of since… The Bronze Age. (And even if something happened to be more enjoyable back then, it’s definitely not worth remembering anyway.)

Tomorrow, we’ll go through the script once more and see if we “accidentally” haven’t forgotten something on the way… But hopefully (And I mean that very sincerely this time.), we can pick up the filming next Sunday where we left it last Sunday. (Fingers crossed so hard, I think I have fractured them.)

by Markus


Sep 24 2009

“A stumble may prevent a fall.”

Eventhough everything didn’t go 100% “as planned” last weekend, it was indeed a success. I have already said this before to both cast and crew but once again: THANK YOU. Without you we would only have a script and a camera (and loads of other gear and props obviously). Both me and and Markus are very greatful for your fantastic efforts last weekend. Day TWO will be filled with Establishing-, SteadiCam-, FX- and POV-shots and we shouldn’t encounter any problems with those. I am smiling while I write this, because we - and you - know that “Murphy’s Law” once again will accompany us. But in the end I still feel quite confident that this too will be a success, because day TWO (on paper) is EASY compared to day ONE.

Our camera have something in common with my favourite 3D-renderer Maxwell Render. I first imagine the shot looking BEAUTIFUL and then when I render it with Maxwell - or in this case film it with the Mark II - the result is far more beautiful and awesome than I earlier had wished for.

I like that.

by intelligentlight


Sep 22 2009

Antecedent anxiety generator

After some healthy sleep (Three hours per night, or something - Which is sufficient if your goal is to during a bike-ride discover that cobblestoned streets have the hypnotizing similarities to a bloody Magic Eye 3D picture!) the fact remains and has started to claw away inside the chest - The undeniably long, cold and rainy fall is getting closer and closer… (Well, imagine that!)

So the grand plan is to next weekend hit the exact same location we filmed on last Sunday and get the establishing shots done with nice green surroundings before we film the dialogue-driven scenes in another and far more approachable location with coniferous, evergreen forest.

And once there, it’s hopefully another cold sweat anxiety-inducing problem less.

by Markus


Sep 21 2009

…and a smooth landing!

Hey again!

It’s great to work with Markus because we think and feel in a very similar way. He pretty much summarized all my thoughts (below in his post) about this fantastic day. This makes my thread rather short (sorry). All in all it was all good and with very nice results. As with most film productions, it had its ups and downs, but eventually we got the hang of it and we worked well as a team!

All the shots are now copied to three different locations for safety. So we can all  sleep tonight! I will write more about this later next week, because I really need some sleep now. But before I go, here’s a present to the cast and crew (and the visitors of this blog): I have uploaded five stills (which are all taken from a few of the many scenes we filmed today). These have no colour filters or FX added (yet), so they are pretty much straight out of the camera. We may not show anymore stills than these - until the film is finished - so enjoy!

(It is now 12:15 a.m on Monday, so when I say “today” I mean yesterday.)

by intelligentlight


Sep 20 2009

Take Off

Back home and… It was a good day… That’s one thing that immediately can be established. This was the first day when we shot footage for the still “officially” unnamed film-project. I tend to get nervous and concerned about everything and nothing, and this day was not really an exception. Why? 1) We only had about six or seven hours to get as many scenes done as possible with the minutes counting down what felt like about ten at the time - I.e. Too. Bloody. Fast! 2) I hadn’t met any of the actors or the crew earlier and didn’t know what to expect at all. But it has to be said - I trust my co-pilot at Intelligent Light Films’ judgment more than my own sometimes, so that part of me who doesn’t live in a fantasy world 24/7 knew that he had found the right crew. The initial meeting with the three lead actors of the film along with the director of photography and the sound guy was an immediate sign that this probably would work out better than we had dared to dream of.

And it did. Much better in fact. And the most amazing thing is that the actors looked more or less identical to what we had had in mind back when we started forming the story last winter. And another significantly great thing was that the actors made little subtle changes to their lines which fit their characters way, way better than what’s written in the script. Because you can’t really know how the character’s will come alive before you see them in front of the camera. Unless you write thousands and thousands of lines of dialogue and the go back and “know” the character and think: “Hey. That’s not how he or she talks.” But. We had to put something in there as a guideline, and our actors fixed that little problem. All expectations were met several times over. I can only hope that they all had a good time and that they want to follow us to the end of this one.

Of course, there were a few setbacks. No disasters. Just one or two delays. One caused by the human factor and the second one caused by the geographical factor. We live in the Western Gothland in Sweden, so you can pretty much guess what kind of “surprise”-weather we got at one point. Here’s a hint: NOT CLEAR BLUE SKIES AND SUNSHINE. But the rain kind of added to atmosphere. And the lake we filmed a few scenes by looked haunting in the background. Not that I saw each and every one of them, but the compositions and camera angles were breathtakingly beautiful in all the scenes that we filmed.

What wasn’t a setback, but what can be a bit tricky is to get the workflow going in the right direction. However, I don’t think we even got through the first scene with the actors before we found that right direction. It just clicked. That’s rare, I’d say. (It’s too early to reveal what the film’s story arc is, but it was heart-warming, to say the very least, to realize that the actors had got the general idea of the concept and already understood where we were going with the actions and… Reactions.)

Thanks a million to everyone involved. Now, I’m gonna pass out on the floor here. I don’t know if it’s due to loss of blood or something else. (The mosquitos hate me, but they apparently love my blood. Go figure.)

by Markus


Sep 19 2009

It’s time

Tomorrow is, if everything goes as planned, the first of maybe two or three shooting days. (Yes, it’s a short film we’re making.)

The script was finalized two days ago, and we’re now getting all the props together and making some minimal changes to the proceedings. Time and abysmal weather conditions combined with no real schedule have all been enemies up to now. I’ve had my doubts about shooting this thing in September, but thanks to the fair and sometimes excellent weather conditions, the fall has been “postponed” and things are looking well.

The script has come alive, sort of, during the last re-writes. Most plotholes and continuity errors have been ironed out, but it still isn’t overly clear. We leave at least some the thinking and “puzzling the pieces together” up to the potential viewer, which subsequently leaves the window open for personal interpretations. The first synopsis (Which would have ended up as a feature-length film had it been transfered to a screenplay.) had the entire backstory explained. But it didn’t work with the central theme focused around the three characters. So we had to abandon the idea pretty early on and try to depict the culminating event in just under 30 minutes. I think it works all right even without the profound characterization. A 90-100 minute film would probably have been more intriguing and challenging on all levels to make, but it was not really possible to realize right now. Plus that we wanted to get this done this year and not in ten.

by Markus


Sep 12 2009

No sins of omission

Even if scheduling this project proved to be a not very inspiring situation with one foot in a logistic nightmare and the other one in a creative bottleneck, it’s at least safe to say that we have thoroughly managed to form the concept on which the entire movie’s plot rests. It needed some changes, of course. But they were for the better, and that’s the way you get from one point to the next. The point is that we have found something to focus on.

The story of the film is based on a very symbolic and highly classic work of literature, and somehow our ideas drifted towards that particular book’s ideas of the inner struggles and the pangs of consciousness (Or the lack thereof.) of one individual - The idea that we all create our own hells and that it’s quite easy to get stuck in those. But we also included a supernatural element to the script and the conclusion that you shouldn’t be careful what you wish for if it means that it could come true…

It’s still a bit too early to say if the idea itself survives the journey to the moving images, but at least it feels like it’s approachable now.

by Markus


Sep 12 2009

“The board is set, the pieces are moving.”

Yes, why not a Gandalf quote? We are very close to filming now and this quote describes our current situation.

Now it’s getting really interesting, and fun! A date is set and most of the pre-production is complete:

  • Script is finalized « check
  • Locations « check
  • Casting « check
  • Crew « check
  • All equipment « check:ish

The last missing equipment will be acquired by next week, so we should be OK in a matter of days. This is good news!

I think that I prefer to create short films, at least right now in my life. I really like the idea that within a year a thought can become a script and a script can become a finished film. The process is usually at least three times longer when creating a feature film… We have done 11 months of pre-production now, but this could of course been completed a lot faster. It has taken this long because we have all been focusing on our main jobs + University studies. This project always comes second. Nevertheless, we made it and project LDE is soon created!

Unless I have any more news to share, the next update you will see from me here will be production diaries from the days of filming! See you!

by intelligentlight


Aug 25 2009

Inspiration

Inspiration about photography and life…
This is not a tutorialvideo, just watch it!
Thanks imaginara.

An update about our film project is coming soon.
by intelligentlight


Aug 7 2009

Definitely something new

Something old, something new, something borrowed or maybe just something blue?

We now just need to add 3-5 minutes playtime into the script. Last week I spent 8 hours converting our finished storyline into a script with camera angles, scene numbers etc. I postponed that for a while, since I also really wanted to relax on my vacation. This current version of the script is 29 pages long, but my guess is that the movie will be 15-20 minutes long.

After reviewing the script within the team we felt that there was something missing about 3/4 into the script. And, since one of our actresses is off on a trip for the next two weeks this gives us some extra time to finish the script and do what most scriptwriters do; rewrite, rewrite and rewrite. The whole story feels good now but like most film- and gameprojects, this too needs some time for “polishing”.

Right now my guess is that we will shoot the film in the end of August and that we can shoot it in just 1-2 afternoon/nights. Please stay tuned!

by intelligentlight


Jun 5 2009

First outline finished

Lots of stuff have happened lately, and the frustrations over the fact that there always seems to be a shortage of time have been constant reminders of either bad planning or too many unrealistic goals.

Writing the outline for the script has been a slow process until now, but it is finally finished… So now we can begin to shape the story based on the defined elements.

That should not be an impossible task anymore.

by Markus


Jun 4 2009

Pre-production extravaganza

Three weeks later and pre-production is still running smoothly. That is mainly because I have been so busy with work and IRL issues so I haven’t had much time lately to mess anything up. ^^ Casting is still a major topic, but we are far enough in that “adventure” now so are not worried that we won’t find actors in time for production.

We’ve also been checking around a lot for the last of the equipment of what to actually buy and what to rent during the production week. Lately I have been checking out filmtripods, HD-HDMI camera LCDs, various grips, microphone booms and even filmproduction cartrailers. I’ve also played with the idea of renting a Red ONE system, but I think that we’ll use that one next year instead. I’m currently checking out Panavision lenses to use on our far more interesting camera of choice. ^^

The real extravaganza and crunch mode will be in the end of June and in the beginning of July.

by intelligentlight


May 9 2009

May update

We got our SteadiCam/SteadyCam-system now and a also brand new film slate - the first imported from India and the second from Shanghai. ^^
‘Gotta luv eBay! Since May will be an extremely busy month IRL for both me and Markus I think that we will do our SteadiCam-tests in the end of June (and post the result here). The main pre-production will continue in the last two weeks of June and all of July and we will shoot the movie in either the end of July or August. It might not be dark enough at night, during July in Sweden, so right now I’m thinking August. Either way, we should be able to shoot it in 3-5 days, which is 20 days less than our last production - so this shouldn’t be too much work.

Priority one at the moment is CASTING and in about 6-8 weeks we should have a full cast ready. We have some “maybes” at the moment and I’m waiting for various people to get back to me regarding both lead- and small roles and then audition time! The cast will be presented/official during post-production, i.e. after the film has been shot.

The production bible is coming along nicely; I’m pretty much trying to get the entire production into one document, similar to a design document in game development. This one however will not include the script, but will have all necessary information regarding the entire production and (hopefully) answer any questions the team might have.

On another note: I spent about 3 hours last night one somewhat of a pre-production for our next film, which we will create during the summer and fall/winter of 2010. The reason for this was because I got an epiphany and I had to update the story outline and the production design. This movie “Broken Circle III: Parallax” (2010) will be a 100% green-screen short film with real actors and all the backgrounds-plates will be 3D stills and animations. This movie will have 3-4 actors and a team of about production team of about 10 people. “Broken Circle II: Parabellum” (2011) is a full feature (Markus’ script is +200 pages long and demands a lot of pre-production ^^ ), which is why we will shoot the third film before the second one. I am already excited about this project and this pre-production will resume around January of 2010.

I think that my next update will be in the middle/end of June, when my students have graduated and my vacation has started. I think that Markus will update before that though. ^^

Take care!

by intelligentlight


Apr 21 2009

Painting with Light

Here is the video which I basically promised in my last post.

Motion tests on location (HD)

As Markus wrote below, these locations were very creepy and yet intruiging and inspirational. In the film clip you will see some (of many) motion tests we did on Sunday April 19th. These are tests without a SteadiCam (actually spelled with an “i” here) to see how much motion blur and painting with light we get with rapid camera movement. I therefore slowed many of the clips down to 30-50% speed to see the motion. It looks very nice and works for some things, but other parts obviously requires steady and smooth camera movement.

It’s a shame that 60% of the quality and detail of the video gets destroyed when Youtube converts the video file. Oh well… Oh, and since Markus didn’t want to be “the actor” you are stuck watching me again. ^^

When we get our Steadicam-rig I am sure that we’ll post some tests featuring that too, but that might be the last video we will show here before we start shooting the film. During the shoot we will probably only show photos from the production.

Also please note that all of our clips, featured on Youtube, uses free audioswap music which is “OK” - but not even remotely close to the music which we will use in the film later on.

by intelligentlight


Apr 20 2009

Unfinished Tales

We have changed a few key elements in the story outline - Not only do they fit the theme better than the initial ideas (That basically weren’t much more than fragments.), but they also encapsulate a slightly more effective sense of slow and gradual isolation that is crucial and much needed here.

Yesterday’s visit to an utterly haunting and strange place fueled the inspiration as well.

The screenplay will focus on two relationships that disintegrate simultaneously and the idea that something bad must be destroyed in order to create or release something good. The tale itself that breaks in two is just an allegory for this process. I’m pretty sure that we have found a theme that works this time.

by Markus


Apr 20 2009

Location reconnaissance

Fast forest chase scene

"Fast forest chase scene - with VFX"

Hello again,

We were “on location” for the first time yesterday (Sunday, April 19th) and we did many video and audio tests. Overall the day was a success and I am currently editing and playing around with some of the footage from yesterday. We managed to find some of the awesome actual locations which we will use on the shoot in July/August. We did not however find the main site, but we have a pretty good idea of where to find it.

We did lots of different video tests and maybe I’ll put those up on YouTube.com later this week and link it here. We haven’t got our new tripod and SteadiCam system yet, so these tests were done with a cheap(ish) tripod and shaky hand-held style. We did pan-, timelapse-, zoom- and chase-tests with the camera to see the results with and without postproduction. Full-sensor 1080p video differs, compared to 35 mm film, when it comes to fast pans and shaky camera movement. We now know what works and what to avoid.

We also did various audio tests recording voices, ambience etc.  in stereo, surround with different quality settings: 96 kHz / 24-bit and 48 kHz / 24-bit etc. with different mic gains. We’ll send those to our audio/foley guy later this week.

You can see a still from one of the many chase scenes above.

by intelligentlight


Apr 15 2009

The first draft

…is not finished…

But!

The story outline is basically done… As always, there are some ideas that may not work and others that work well but, on the other hand, don’t feel too intriguing. The real challenge lies in forming the non-working ideas into working and believable ones.

Still, the outline already has the foundation for the characterization, the main events and the core of the conflict with a conclusion. With this film, taking place during one night with three (Maybe more, but no less.) extremely critical turning points, we’re gonna try to avoid the “typical” story that goes from point A to B to C. Instead, we’ll try to make the simplistic story revolve around the intervention of fate, chance, bad luck or whatever you want to call it. In this also lies the challenge to construct the script differently than other movies that utilize the concept of “chance”.

We’ll see where it goes from there…

by Markus


Apr 14 2009

April update

Hey again!

A lot of things has happened the last few weeks during pre-production of “Project C”. (We basically have a name for the movie now, but we will announce that later this spring.)

To make a long story short, our pre-production so far is this: get a budget (done), finalizing the script (50% done), production schedule July/August (tba), equipment (basically done), camera rigs (tba), sound equipment (done, new boom needed), electricity (done), transportation (done), props (far from done), food and lodging (done), film equipment (done), lighting (done, for now), film (memory in this case, done), external memory and backup units (done), music (maybe), foley artist (done), adr artist (done), editing and vfx solution (tba) etc.

Two of the five actors are at the moment are a big maybe, but we’ll see further down the road. A few of the extras and other actors are also somewhat “done”. We will however have an audition sometime in June.

We will do some recon this week “on location” to find the perfect spots for filming; places with good lighting, free from sounds/noise and available electricity. We will also start doing extensive surround sound/stereo tests on location soon.

Since we all have regular day jobs, which we focus on, we only work on some week nights and on weekends.

by intelligentlight


Mar 29 2009

Camera / FX evening tests #2

Hey again!

Here are some more evening camera / FX tests for Project C, these ones was filmed together with Imaginara Photographia. Cheers, Henrik!

Camera / FX evening tests #2 (HD)

Location and soundtests are coming up soon(ish)…

by intelligentlight


Mar 28 2009

Camera / FX evening tests

Hey again!

Here are some evening camera / FX tests.

Camera / FX evening tests (HD)

by intelligentlight



Mar 26 2009

Camera / FX tests

Hey again!

We did some early camera and FX tests yesterday afternoon and you can find a HD version of that here:

Camera / FX tests (HD)

We recommend that you play it in HD and Fullscreen. More to come soon, please stay tuned.

by intelligentlight


Mar 25 2009

Online start

Hey there!

This production-blog will feature a production diary, stills, videos (hosted at YouTube) etc. in the near future. Pre-production for “Project C” has been going on for some time now. We are currently finalizing the script and casting, at the moment, and also doing some early camera/fx tests. We will go and do some tests on the actual film locations soon.

“Project C” (secret name) is a indie horror short film, which will be sent to various film festivals in Sweden and the UK - hopefully during late fall/winter of 2009. We will do most of the filming during July and August. Please note that this is a 100% non-commercial/non-profit film project.

You can find more info at: www.intelligent-light.com.

by intelligentlight