Dec 16th–Making Magic Happen

It's our last day here at the studio and the goal is to have a rough cut, from beginning to end, by the time we leave.

We started at about 9am and will likely be here until 2 to 4am. Now I don't say that to promote the long days and crazy hours, but to share the reality of what we need to do to get this done on time, and in the way we'd like.

The first half of today is finishing up two storylines, and then after dinner we bring it all together (while trying to strengthen the hook).

First up, here's a video of how we're using the Emmy to break up the light as we do some photoscapes.

Now the key with these photoscapes is to make the backgrounds relevant, but also unique for each story.

We went stainless for the garage startup days.

We used an art mat for Canva (the graphic design company)

And then we took a photo of a magazine spread, printed it on magazine stock, then recreated the magazine to get this shot. #storyfirst

After all that, we went to Burgerville to get a shot of the checklist in the bathroom. This tied into a line Luke said in his interview. Now, getting permission from a chain woulda been way too tough, so we went with the 'ask for forgiveness, instead of permission' route.

It's 7pm here and we still have a good 7 hours in us. Keep the good vibes coming as we look to export a full 45-60 minute film before we sleep!

P.

Dec 15th- Pick-ups in Aus

The countdown is well and truly on, we’re down to just today and tomorrow before we need to have a rough cut of the film together.

While we’re cutting, we are also working on pickups. For today’s video we’ll take you into a scene we’re trying to get covered, and how we’re calling on our buddy Nico, in AUS, to shoot while we cut down here.

Here’s the video, all the way from Australia.

Dec 13th - A piece of history.

It's not often I have the chance to steal the camera from Patrick so I thought today I would give you a cheeky little look into something pretty special we uncovered mid shoot.

There has been a whole lot of research that has gone into the founders and stories behind SafetyCulture, Vinomofo and Canva. Often we hear of something that we think would be amazing to recreate, very rarely do we have the chance to get to see it as it happened - first hand.

Well tonight I would like to share with you some footage from Luke's past. We wouldn't have known about this if we hadn't of asked him and we were ecstatic when he shared it with us.

So here is a little glimpse of what Luke dug out of his archives for us.

 

Dec 12th–An Updated Sizzle Reel!!!!!

We've got something really special to share today...an update to the sizzle reel. Remember, our first sizzle reel happened after a discovery shoot and BEFORE all of our principal production.

This has been updated with everything we've shot recently and it's SO SO much better. Now keep in mind that this is just a sizzle reel, it's a proof of concept, not a trailer.

We're working on the trailer now, and that will be much more about the grand vision of our characters and what drives them.

I hope you're as excited as we are for the film that's coming!

Dec 11th–The Edit Is On!

Today is our first full day in the studio on the edit. Now the post team has been going for weeks, but yesterday we converged on PDX and it's on this week.

Diana and I are working on the trailer, while Angie cuts the Safety Culture story, and Steph cuts Vinomofo. Moving forward on several fronts with the goal of a watchable cut by end of week.

As we get back into the groove of daily updates–let us know what you'd like to hear and see as this comes together!

Day 16 - At the Printers!

I never thought i'd have so much fun staring at a monitor, waiting for a printer to spit out paper. Well, I did and it was probably one of my favorite moments from the shoot so far.

You see, it wasn't about the printer, nor what we were able to shoot when we were there. It was about the birth of an idea, working hard to figure out how we could do it and finally, seeing it come to life, just as we had imagined.

It started around two weeks ago at the office of Fusion Books, Mel's & Cliff's first business. I was looking for props to use for an art directed scene we were putting together and had been invited to look for any old yearbooks that would help. I spotted a yearbook that the Fusion Books team had put together for themselves in 2011. I of course took it back to show the team to see if there was a way we could use it strengthen the story.

Patrick took one look at it and thought up a pretty amazing idea on how we could bring the story to life through a real life printer, an idea that we could see the potential in but needed a bit of working out to get there.

It took some time to get everything together, and leading up to it you would have been forgiven for asking if it was worth it. I can tell you that standing there and watching the idea come to life, knowing the challenges that were overcome to get there, it was most definitely worth it.

Day 15 - Our date with a VC

You can't make a film about tech companies without talking about the cash. So when all the interviews with the founders were done, we met with a Venture Capitalist that bets millions on the founders of tech companies.

We wanted to explore why they take cash, what it means and what separates the few that are successful to the vast majority that fail.

And here is the video on how we put the interview together:

For more tips on just how we pulled together the points needed for Rick's interview check out the steps below.

1. Open up the build section of your story

2. Select the relevant timeline from your plot drafts

3. In the 'filter by character' field, select the character you are interviewing

4. You will see the plot points that have been used on the timeline

5. That's it! Structure your interview questions on what you can see selected and you are ready to roll!

Hit us up with any questions relating to the interview or building your story in Storybuilder!

Day 14. A day with Luke + SafetyCulture

Today the four of us woke up in three different states. Shaun and I got an early flight from Adelaide, Patrick flew in from Melbourne and Matt woke up in Sydney.

We got together at SafetyCulture's Sydney office for a day with the team there and of course to spend some more time with Luke. 

One thing that was clear to us from the start is that Luke has hustle, he never stops. He makes the commute from Townsville to Sydney on a regular basis and we wanted to understand exactly what his world is like when he is away from home.

Here's today's video from Luke's hotel room!

Day 13. We're off to Adelaide!

At 6am today we were up for a flight to Adelaide. We headed there for the day to hang out with Andre and his family.

Since so much of Andre and Justin's story was the struggle to keep things going early on, and the strain that put on their family, we wanted to talk with Andre's wife–Jo.

Now most of the interviews in the film have the whole crew working for hours to setup 5-7 lights and heaps of modifiers. But here we were travelling, and wanted to keep the gear light, plus we wanted to give Matt the day to rest up.

That meant it was just myself, Diana, and Shaun with a camera, and then one bag for lighting (one flex light, some scrim jim fabrics, and two stands).

It always blows me away at just what you can do when you have no lights. Had we had a larger crew and more gear we likely would have spent 2 hours achieving something only marginally better.

And that reminds me of Parkinson's Law, the idea that work expands to fill the container that you give it. Have 2 hours and tons of lights for an interview? Well then you'll likely need 122 minutes and use just about every light.

Have virtually no gear and 10 minutes...well it's surprising what you can achieve.

Here's a frame grab of the interview and a couple BTS shots of the setup.

The interview itself is fairly simple, but there are a few little tips and tricks here to help pull it off. 

With no lights, the plan was to use nice window light as our key. It was critical here to pull the curtains over (see in the first photo) so that it gave the light more direction (and therefore more shape on the interview).

We only had two light stands, and both were being used, so we clamped a Flex Light to the kitchen cabinet and bounced it off the wall to bring up the overall ambient level in the background. An HMI or the Creamsource would have been nice to really bring that background to life, but we worked with what we had.

And then we setup one of Matt's T-bones where you run a rod across the top of the fabric and then throw it on a stand. Super quick and simple, but this black fabric acted as a negative fill to block any of the light on the side opposite the key and give us a better lighting ratio.

When all was said and done, it took a crew of 3 about 10 minutes to setup and then Shaun ran the main camera with a 24-70 while also monitoring the audio. Super simple. Super quick. Yet effective.

Tomorrow we're at Safety Culture and we'll have some more time with Luke.

See y'all tomorrow!

 

Day 12. Interviews with Mel + Cliff of Canva

We shot interviews of both Mel and Cliff today at Canva. In total both of their floors must be 10,000+ square feet for over 80 people. Since it was a Saturday we got full rein of the whole space which was so, so awesome.

After the interview we went back to Mel and Cliff's home to get them working and hanging out.

For the daily video we had a short chat with the two of them about what it's like to run a $450MM company and why they chose to be a part of this.

Day 11. We're private investigators.

Early on Luke was a private investigator. He would follow folks around to see if their insurance claim should be paid out.

It was working as a PI that he realized he was a part of the problem and instead wanted to find a way to help people stay safe.

Knowing this is a big part of his story, we wanted to get some PI footage we could use for the film. The challenge was, his old footage would have real people in it and wouldn't be something we could air in a movie.

So we bought an old MiniDV camera, got some talent, and did some investigating of our own.

 
 

For our daily vlog Matt is going to show you how we recreated this old PI footage for the film.

Day 10. We're pitching to distributors!

We're off to Screen Forever here in Australia. Think speed dating for distribution. We get 5 minutes to pitch, then 5 minutes to discuss. In total we have 4 meetings lined up with companies from Universal to some lesser known agencies. 

This video is from right before we went into the pitches.

All of our pitches went well. We had one person really engaged, while the others were interested but had more requirements they'd like us to meet before we talked again.

The biggest surprise for me was that nobody cared about the story or the characters. I expected some sort of questions about the arc, how it was getting put together, or anything story. Nope. It was all about the selling points, demographics, and why people would watch.

We did get a couple cards with people who were interested in reviewing the film once we had something to show.

One was interested if we hit a minimum of 75 minutes to make it a feature over here. Others felt it was a better fit as a series, which we're hoping to turn this into, where each episode follows one character (think Chef's Table but for tech founders).

And other suggested going for interviews with some of the larger everyday tech companies like Uber or AirBnb. It's a worthwhile consideration but not fitting with our keywords (Australia) and changes the scope dramatically.

We'll continue to follow-up with those we met and it was certainly a worthwhile experience. We are still early in the process and need to start putting this film together!  

 

 

Day 9. An impromptu chat with the founders of Vinomofo.

We woke up early this morning, after far too little sleep, to head in and interview Justin–the other co-founder of Vinomofo. 

It's one of our last days of broll for their portion of the story and we could certainly use a rest day. Tomorrow is a pitch event where we share the film with local networks and try to drum up some interest in distribution. 

We're doing all we can to update the sizzle reel so it's more inline with the current boards and also has the Vinomofo characters in it. Problem is we just don't have the time, nor the energy, to try and power through an edit update.

We've got a pretty good outline of what we'd like the new sizzle reel to look like. We used notecards in our gear room here at Vinomofo and pasted them on the wall. Each card is a soundbite or brief moment with the green cards been titles (or our expert, Rick Baker).

Send us some good vibes for the edit update and the pitch meeting. I've never done one of these things before and we're pumped (and anxious) to see what kind of response we get.

Here's today's video. An impromptu chat with the founders of Vinomofo where I ask them how it feels to run a $100MM company and why the heck they chose to spend their time with us.

Day 8. Interviewing Andre of Vinomofo

What a day! We just wrapped a nearly 2 hour interview with Andre and whoa, was it ever powerful. That dude has got energy, passion, and he surely keeps it reel.

These dudes from Vinomofo are going to make the film so much better. So so happy to have gotten them on board for the film.

Today's video takes you through the bts of the interview setup for Andre. Remember, all this content is totally free. And these days are hella long already without adding on this extra video. So if you'd like to support us, please hit the share button!

And if you're curious how the interview turned out, here's a frame grab from the tight shot (85mm on the Epic-W at 5K).

I just love this–something else we shot today–96fps of somebody on team Mofo doing the wine tasting. Look at that love :)

We interview Justin tomorrow AM and then another handful of broll scenes! Wish us luck.

P.

 

 

 

Day 7. We made it to Vinomofo!

Over the next couple days we'll be filming our new characters for the film, Justin and Andre of Vinomofo.

So pumped to have them on board as their story is amazing. How they got their name (specifically the MOFO part) and what they're building is all so amazing to hear.

They recently raised $25MM and are one of Australia's fastest growing companies. We're so excited to welcome them to the film. Interviews start tomorrow am...for now here's a tour of the space and what we were shooting today.

Day 6. Mixing it up.

Some days go swimmingly., other days you are strapping sliders to beams on the ceiling, rushing to the airport and driving for seven hours with a car full of gear.

Today has been one of those days. 

In today's video, we will take you through a few filming hacks we used to get things done at SafetyCulture HQ in Sydney.

Day 5. Rebuilding the creative.

We've officially locked in Andre and Justin from Vinomofo. These dudes have a seriously awesome story and an amazing product.

We're booking travel today to head down to Melbourne and spend next Tuesday and Wednesday with them. 

In today's video, I'll take you through how we're updating the story to handle the change in characters. It's a deep look into how the story is evolving.