Tuesday, March 19, 2013


A.D.R. - Automated Dialog Replacement, except that there's nothing automated about it. An actor stands in a sterile booth with a microphone trying to recreate their performance so we can replace the audio that is hard to hear because the director decided that shooting along a noisy intersection was a good idea.

Spent six hours Friday night replacing a handful of lines. The first two were spent just getting the room in working order.

Tip #3,432: when going into a post-production space, A) never assume that it will be set up and in working order, and B) it will take more time than you think to set it up and get it into working order.

R gave the most amazing ADR performance I've ever seen. Not only did she nail almost every line perfectly on the first take, she copied her performance exactly even though it's been almost a year and half since we shot her scenes.

It could've been a tedious night but M kept it fun. As a producer, he is especially skilled at finding the right people for the job. As a performer, he excels at making sure everyone is having a good time.

However, the Hero Award goes to Dancing Mike, a professional ADR expert who has worked for Spielberg and the Cohen Bros., among many others. Watching him work the console was like watching a great composer at work - you're not sure why he's contorting his body a certain way but you're glad for the results. I am so thrilled that he's mixing our film.

Next Stop: Mixology, Pt. 1: Shaken, Not Stirred

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Beginning of the End

Two months ago we had the wrap party celebrating the end of photography on "American Bomber." The next night I was filming.

A month ago we had the cast & crew screening of the film. Days later I was still editing.

We shot the first footage for the film on June 6, 2010. Last night, September 12, 2012, I shot the last piece of footage (knock on wood).

I thought doing the research and writing the script would change me. It didn't. It was the shooting. The day-to-day of having to find the words to express my feelings - instead of my thoughts - and having to navigate those feelings with people who are incredibly intelligent and talented. It's like slicing off a limb and examining it from angles you would never be able to naturally. Equal parts terrifying and fascinating.

The journey has changed me. And given the quality of my companions, I know it is for the better.

Next: This Is the Sound of (Not) Silence...

Monday, April 16, 2012

Lord Have Mercy

I love St. Patrick's. Not the cathedral. The little Irish/Latino church in Astoria. They were very open to a couple of heathens trying to make a movie about the worst possible sin and so we did our best to try not to defile their house too badly.

The best thing about shooting in a church is that it is absolutely quiet. The worst part is that it's too quiet and nobody, including actors speaking dialog, want to get any louder.

All things considered, this is one my favorite scenes of the film so far.

Only about 5 more days of shooting left. I have no idea when those days will be, but there are only five of them...I think.

Coming Up: The Philadelphia Experiment and Back to the Dungeon...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Setting Tourist Traps


Pop quiz: It takes an hour and a half to get to the top of the Empire State Building. It takes another hour to work around the crowds of tourists to get the shot. It takes another half-hour to get out of the building.

Total time spent: 3 hours. Total screen time: 10 seconds.

Now multiply this by Madison Square Park, the BX9 bus, Central Park East and yet another trip to Port Authority.

Your answer should be: total time spent: 6 hours. Total screen time: 30 seconds.

Ain't math fun?


One hour. One shot. One broken heart. M continues to amaze me with his ability to expose his rawest of nerves. I think we're both gonna need a good cry if we ever get out of this.

Next: We're going to church. No, seriously.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Smoking In the Boy's Room

The good news: you're filming near the film department of a major east coast art school. All the camera, lighting and electronic tools you could possibly want are at your finger tips.

The bad news: your location doesn't have a working power outlet.

Tip # 643: Don't assume that because a room has electricity, it has a power outlet. And if it does have a power outlet, plug something into that outlet to make sure it actually works.

Filming in a public restroom is always fun because you know eventually someone is going to walk in to use the toilet. In the case of Wednesday night, the magic moment of innocent bystander intrusion happened to be when M is sitting on the toilet and I'm on my knees in front of him. Having a camera in my hand probably didn't make things look any better.

This was only the second most awkward moment of the evening. First prize goes to M watching me record the sound of my urine for the soundtrack. Probably the most disgusting director's cameo ever.

Coming Up Next: Port Authority III: The Final Chapter

Monday, January 30, 2012

Seventh Inning Stretch (and other sports metaphors)

Shot R's last scenes last Wed. Didn't think we were going to get to shoot at all as both of our locations were public transit spaces, but M knows just the right way to kick me in the ass and we got things done and done well. Going to miss working with R, though.

I love shooting in NY because no one cares. We're filming on a stalled subway car and the conductor walks through our shot, looks at us, shrugs and goes back to his business. Oddly, it's the homeless people who keep asking us if we have a permit.

With both R and F wrapped, we enter into the home stretch. Only about 12 more days left. However, this is like football where 2 minutes of game time can take an hour to happen. Looks like we'll wrap around late Feb/early March.

Remember back in September when I said we'd be done by December? Hahahahaha...sucker.

Next stop on the Pork Chop Express: well that's the $65,000 question, now isn't it?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Bowled Over By the MTA

Never trust the MTA. Especially when you're planning on illegally shooting on a train. Despite the MTA website declaring that our train would have "good service" it was in fact not running at all. Neither was our back up train. So what do you do when you don't have a location? You go bowling, that's what.

Shot about an hour's worth of M and R bowling for what will ultimately be 10 seconds of film time. Also shot (what I hope is) the last scene in R's bedroom. Can't believe how gracious she's been about letting us stink up her home. 

Wednesday will be our last day with R. We've been shooting with her for over 3 months. It's going to be weird to move on without her.

Next time on Project Gangrene Light: There's No Authority Like A Port Authority & Who You Calling A South Ferry?