72U goes to Film School / by Alex Schreer

72U went to film school this week, well maybe not exactly but we did make a short film, and I'm going to give you an inside look behind the scenes before we release it. Something very interesting and almost dangerous happens when you put 7 creative people, all from different background, history, experience in one room and hand them a piece of paper with a brief on it. In our case, the brief had three prompts that lead the direction of what our short 60 sec. Film would be trying to encapsulate. After many hours brainstorming, pinning up and debating, we had come to a direction for the short. 

Anyways back to the topic, we were going to be addressing the clash between Nature and Technology, a topic that seems to become more relevant each year, how can we find a balance in our own lives between the two. We set off like a wildfire, I personally have a small amount of film industry experience and this is one of the fastest evolving projects I have ever participated in. Partnering closely with 72andSunny’s very own Ray Smiling (Art Director working on the Adidas account) we were guided through the process of producing short films. Everything was touched on from storyboarding, prop lists, shot lists, casting, Location Scouting, etc. All of this went down in under about a week. Eventually, our collaboration gave spawn to a storyline involving a father and daughter partaking in a rather normal activity, with a twist, No I will not give away the plot to you right now, you have to wait and watch our short film.

Personally, Casting was an eye-opening experience for me, having come from always casting either friends or family for my own projects. Dealing with aspiring actors on a budget gave us the opportunity to see some very talented people, as well as have a few good laughs throughout the day.

We cast throughout the day and eventually narrow the field to two father figures and two daughters, then paired them up based on who looked as if they could actually be related as well as who we thought would work well together. Two casting calls later and we had discovered our talent, I don’t think we could’ve predicted how amazing these two would interact with each other when on set, but we made the right choice.

ll this planning culminated in our shoot day, A.K.A. June 21st, everyone had their tasks to complete and special jobs, I was director of photography, managing camera equipment as well as doing most of the filming, Javier managed the audio and handled the boom mic like he was born with it. Leon offered direction when there was question, as well as lit up our actors with the 6 ft reflector, Adam oversaw the production and made sure all loose ends were accounted for, even though we nixed his idea for getting a trained foxed for our shoot.

Our locations were propped and actors looked amazing thanks to the help of Maria, Sara, and Megan. You might not notice on your first watch, but Sara created custom labeling for all the camping essentials, also keeping us safe from getting sued.

It was really great to see everyone find their niche within the team and help make our collective idea a reality. It will be interesting to see the types of work we produce in the coming weeks as we each challenge each other to leave our comfort zones and experiment with new idea, mediums and experiences. Look for our Short film to be up on our blog shortly, we are currently editing through it.