My project is focused on a realistic matter, something that could really happen one day. I aim to create a film with informative dialogue about the story, the character and how it ended up the way it did. I am doing this because I am interested in alternatives, what ifs? and how these decisions can change the world for better or worse. I am going to be focusing on the darker side of alternatives and exploring what it will be like if the human race was to die out and an inside into the thoughts and views of the last remaining human as they know they’re dying. I also want to look into the effects that loneliness and isolation does to people long term and the effects it has mentally.
The story itself is about an unknown character who is sitting in a dark room. It is made clear that the character’s condition is bad as they’re sitting alone, in torn and dirty clothing. The character begins to talk about the world and how it came to be.
Review of my knowledge and found Skills relating to the projects production
(1.Produce a short review of what you know about your subject (based on your knowledge, previous work and literature review) – mind map)
Below are the skills that I’ve developed throughout the course that I will need in order to complete my production. I’ll be talking about how good I am at each, my experience in learning and performing them and how I will be using them for my production.
My skill of operating a camera has improved drastically in these past few months. I have knowledge of various functions and elements on a camera.
I have knowledge of various framing methods and have more as I’ve progressed throughout the course. I know how to do various frames and use them in my productions. I used framing in my Hello Project to show my character’s progression from the forest to her house. The framing I have knowledge on include such as Long shots, Establishing shots, Medium, Close ups and High/Low angle shots. Here are some examples from a previous blog post I did.
Framing is going to be an a key participant in my production so I have to make sure that the frames I decide to use in my production are honed to keep a smoother quality in my film. I want to use framing to create a good view of the character, their face, what they’re wearing and the darkness of the room.
Compositions are methods used in photography, they’re used to show different ways to show the contents within the shots. Compositions will be involved throughout my scenes. I am glad that I know compositions and that they will come in handy when making my film look better visually. I have learnt numerous compositions including Leading lines, Rule of third and Natural framing.
I will be using compositions in my film, I want to show my character’s face from different heights and have them in different shots depending on what they’re talking about in the story.
Knowledge of lighting when shooting is going to be important to me as I’m filming in a darker environment. Within this year I’ve learnt about the different types of lighting environments when shooting and how the camera should be set to get the best quality for that lighting. These functions involve White Light balance. This is a function that I have learnt to use through practical experience and practise. It removes any unrealistic colours from the picture, temperature colours. They can be too bright or too dark. In the past I have had experience taking photographs in different locations each which had different colour temperature ranges. Tungsten and Fluorescent are two of these that I’ve used in the past. I’ve learnt about the differences between interior (artificial lighting) and exterior (natural lighting), this will come useful when filming my location is interior.
I have gained experience in lighting throughout the course through lectures and practical work. Lighting is going to be one of my top priorities in this production. This is because I’m filming in a dark environment so I must know what and need and how to set up my lighting. For my production I want to make my character have a harsher shadow. I am going to need to develop this to greater understand and to be able to how to shoot in darker conditions. This is something I could find out by reading articles or watching videos on YouTube.
Level and gain
I know how to find and set the best pickup level when using microphones. This is done by testing different levels until finding the best one that Isn’t too loud so its muffles the audio. this is going to be necessary for me to do when recording my character’s monologue. I’ll also be practising with recording voice before production to develop a better understanding of the experience. I have recorded dialogue a few times in the past including recording an audio clip from the book 3 Billy Goats Gruff and producing an original scene for an audio show. So luckily these experiences should aid me when recording my sound.
As experienced through editing on Avid and other programmes I learnt that the gains of each audio track may have to be lowered or heightened so they avoid the chances of being over heard by other tracks in the edit. This is something that I looked into further in my own time. I will be using this in my edit to adjust the sound and make it all fit with the right amount of gain. I will also be using Key-frames at some points to exit a sound smoothly without dropping it and when introducing my ambient sound and monologue
I’ve learnt about a wide range of microphones such as Dynamic, Condenser and shotgun microphones. I know the polar patterns of such and how they are used to record different kinds of sound and depending on the environments, some microphones are better than others to use. Because of this knowledge I have decided that I will be using a Shotgun microphone to record my character’s monologue as this is the best microphone for recording speech due to its tighter polar pattern.
Narrative is an essential thing for me to have to learnt when producing films. I have learnt about several types of Narrative from Open narratives to Multi-stranded narratives. These are the different narrative flows I have learnt;
Open Narratives are stories that feature a wide range of characters. There is no protagonist in these films as they’re following the lives of multiple people at once. Open narratives are common for TV soaps.
A close narrative follows a tight story where it’s possible to fit many years within an average two hour film. Close narrative films compress moments so that they can fit in as much as they can to make everything happen in the movie and that It completely finishes by the end of the run time.
These are stories are made up of multiple strands, as the narrative progresses the these strands will become linked to another.
Linear and Non-Linear
A linear film is simply a film that has a beginning a middle and an end, that’s it. A No-Linear narrative is more complex as they can be told in any order depending on the story. Non-Linear also include flashbacks, rewinds and often they have no solid endings, sometimes finishing off with a cliff hanger of something that makes the audience question the fate of the character(s)
My film is a Non-Linear. It starts off with flashbacks to the past before returning the the present. My film has no apparent ending and instead ends with the character going silent.
Key skills I need to develop/Build
These are the skills that I need to further develop and skills that I need to learn in order for my Extended Project to be a success.
The concept of screen writing isn’t new to me, I have done it before. Although only when I was younger in primary and secondary school. I haven’t wrote any scripts at a professional standard before. I am going to have to write more, read scripts and find advice if I want to improve. I can improve by doing several things, the most common being practise. Through practise I can learn more about writing scripts and encounter more issues and mistake that I can then remember when writing another and avoid that mistake altogether the next time I screen write.
I will be reading scripts from media content which is similar to my idea including films, TV shows and video-games to see things such as how characters are introduced and what their views are. I will be looking at screen play from
This is the TV show which screen plays I will be reading and analysing from. The Walking Dead is a good example as it’s a big influence to my own idea. When reading the screen plays I want to focus on the character’s and how they react in situations. I will use this to contemplate realistic reactions to how my character would act and respond when talking about tough subjects.
I also have to improve on my narrative idea, although I know what I want to produce I am not so sure on what I want to include in my film, what views and interests of the character to include for them to talk about. I am going to need to develop my skill further in screen writing, being able to come up with interesting material to keep my viewers attention. This is where my review of the comic book Hulk: The End fits in. This comic book is probably the biggest influence on my idea out of all other ones.
Hulk: The End has influenced some if not most of my idea towards making a setting with only the last remaining human on Earth. Reading it, I have created many of my own ideas and incorprated some of the flow of this story into my own story.
I have taken the concept of this story’s landscape and used it as influence when doing my own which is very similar.
I have experience in lighting and I’m able to experiment sometimes. Although for this film I want my location to be dark with only a little light available. My character is going to be sitting in a dark room and so I need them to be just about visible but without having to light up the room.
This is the kind of lighting environment I want to have in my film. I am going to achieve this by practising and finding ways/tutorials on how to produce this lighting environment. I will also have to learn what ISO/functions to use on the camera to suit it to these lighting conditions.
For my short film the monologue is going to be the one telling the story. So I have to be able to record sound that isn’t interrupted, muffled and is clear. To this do I will be practising recording the speech for my script and finding ways to improve on it.
I want to improve on my camera operating, focusing more on improving on my framing so I can capture better scenes and learn new ones.
Research Activities Preparation
These are the research methods and activities that I will be doing to improve both my knowledge and skill. These tasks will be a mix of both Primary and Secondary research.
Finding potential locations that I could use to film my movie in. Discussing them about any permissions that they require and I will also need to know how to get the permission before filming. The possibilities of location recces to help better my understanding these locations before I make my final choice on which one is best to use.
Analysing relating parts from Hulk: The End
As I said before, a lot of my influence come from this comic book. I am going to analyse parts of it and discuss where I get some of my influences from in the story and why how they’ve influenced my idea and its story. I want to break away parts of the story and look at the parts individually.
To be able to write a screen play that is interesting I’m going to need influence, finding out what famous TV shows and movies have in their scripts and dialogue which make them so great. I want to write a monologue peace for my character which follows both my idea and story influences. The specific media content I will analyse is from the TV show called The Walking Dead and from the movie I am Legend.
I Am Legend (IMP Awards, No Date) - The Walking Dead (AMC, 2016)
After this when I’ve gathered all my ideas in what to include in my character’s monologue I will begin writing my screenplay after planning the order in which I want to start and end at.
I am going to be producing my storyboard, including the shots in order, camera angles and frames, and matters. Due to my story taking place in the same location I am going to include information in my storyboard about what the character is discussing in each shot to avoid confusion.
General Review of War
World War I History (History, No Date) - Ending World War II (Cambridge, 2017)
The two world wars are going to be briefly brought up by my character. So as preparation for writing the dialogue for this part of my script I’m going to need to have a common knowledge of the two wars including when and how they started, the final outcome and what the aftermath caused. I will be doing this by reading articles and watching a few documentaries on YouTube.
Character design: Personality, feelings & costume
My character is going to be giving a dialogue. To get my viewers attention I have to make a character that has an interesting history and views on the world. The character is going to be telling their story and how they feel to be the last remaining human left to rot away.
For the design of my character, I have to make them look like they’re living rough. So designing this would involve clothing like a torn and ripped shirt and dirty trousers and maybe scruffy hair.
I experimenting and finding good editing techniques to incorporate in my final production. To do this I’ll be using found footage and experimenting it with music and finding the best ways in which I feel express my productions ideals.
World Wars I/II Understanding: How it started
This research is so that I can include it in my character’s monologue, it will help me decide what to mention about the wars and how they will fit into my monologue.
World War one started on the 28th of July 1914. The cause of the war was said to be the assassination of the Heir’s to the Austrian throne one month before the war began on the 28th of June 1914.
Deaths: 17 million
WW1 duration: July 1914 – November 1918
This piece of information is going to be useful when writing out my character’s monologue. This will be used as an introduction which then leads on to the character explaining how everything went wrong, what happened and how everyone died.
The second World War started September 1st 1939. It is said that first WW had set the stage for the second war which happened two decades after. Germany which at the time was a politically unstable country. Hitler’s nationalist party fought to the rise of Germany as he sought after World dominance and began invading countries like Poland. This invasion drew in the attention of France and Great Britain which fought against Germany. This battle lasted for six years with more countries like America joining the fight.
Deaths: around 60 million
WW2 duration: September 1939 – September 1945
I am going to include this information, having my character talk about the first world war mentioning how many people died then talking about the second world war and how many died there. They will talk about how the first war was bad and about how the second one was even worse. This is the lead into when he begins to start talking about his own damnation and what lead to it.
I am Legend Analysis
The movie I am Legend has given me some insight into how people would be in a dystopian/post apocalyptic environment. The tone and theme of this movie has been a major influence to the kind of character I want to produce. The major theme relating to both my own film and I am Legend is the feeling of being the Last man alive. I strive towards producing a life-like character that shows what effects this global extinction has had on them and how they feel about it. To do this I have been looking at the screen play for I am Legend and finding parts where the protagonist, Robert Neville tells the audience what all the loneliness and isolation has done to his mental health and overall well being.
“Hell is oneself, Hell is alone, the other figures in it merely projections. There is nothing to escape from and nothing to escape to. One is always alone.”
This is a line in the script, it tells the audience how the character feels about being alone and afraid. Reading it I can see that the toll of loneliness has had an affect on the character, they don’t like being alone stating “Hell is oneself, Hell is alone. I really like this line as it says that the character has been alone so long that they have realised that true ‘hell’ is to be alone, that it is hell to be left with no one to talk to but their own thoughts. I can see this really helping me on creating a personality for my character and how they would act in their damned-like life.
Another line I really took interest in is this one
”There is nothing to escape from and nothing to escape to. One is always alone.”
The character know’s that there is nothing left, no cause and no way to fix it. They have looked for meaning of their existence and concluded that there really is nothing left and that they’re and always will be ‘always alone’.
By breaking down these quotes and understanding them I now have a better idea of what my character is going to be like and how they are going to talk during their monologue. This is going to help me create parts of my monologue.
I Am Legend (2007) Directed by Francis Lawrence
Hulk: The End analysis
A one-shot comic book from Marvel in August 2002 called Hulk: The End. Reading this comic book has given me ideas on what my character is going to be like as this is something I want to find out so I can better sculpt my character. I have read through the book and looked meaningful parts done and said by the protagonist, Bruce Banner (The Hulk).
Here, Bruce is the last remaining human on Earth. In this scene he is wandering around when he begins to describe how he feels about the silence, how he has never gotten used to not being able to hear sound around him such as cars, children etc.
I want to include something like this for my character. Where they regret taking for granted the small things in life, simple things like common sounds.
I also like the part where he talks about how he has forgotten what voices sound like.
I want my character’s monologue to be able to show to the audience how they feel on the matters they’re talking about. I want to write a monologue that is interesting and developed through research. This is a good insight in to the kind of state my character could be in as the last man alive.
Character: Outfit Design
Because my character is living in this barren world where survival is a constant threat they will be wearing some pretty worn out clothing. They wouldn’t care about what they’re wearing in fact so something like a torn, stained shirt is a good example. A white shirt would be a good one to use due to white showing the wear and tear better. I will buy a white T-shirt and mess it up a bit. Putting mud and grass stains on it and also cutting holes and stretching it out a bit so it hangs on the character.
My character’s outfit is also important for the film. It will help show how harsh and unforgiving their life is. Due to the conditions of their environment their clothing will be thick, beaten and dusty. I looked at some images online through Bing, Yahoo and Google and searched saw that they all had similar clothing. Clothing which covers most of their body for protection and warmth. Thinking about my character I decided that they will wear a thick jacket with a hoodie, rough jeans and sturdy boots. Each clothing would have some responsibility to ensuring their survival in the world. I will also have a back pack next to my character, tilted on the floor with cans of food and bottled water falling out to add effect.
I picked this jacket and paired it with a hoodie because of it’s thick texture. The character would choose to wear clothing that can keep them warm and will last overtime so a thick jacket would fit best in this environment. I also picked it because It is darker and makes the character fit in more with the location and the story they’re telling.
I picked the hood because I don’t want the character’s face revealed. I want the character the remain a mystery, this includes their appearance. The hood is a good way to include the character in the scenes without revealing what they look like. I also chose the colour of the hood to be red. This is because looking at the emotions tied to the colour red stands out to be a more serious colour often being used on danger and stop signs.
PIC OF JEANS
Jeans was a good choice for me as for the same reason as the jacket the character will be wearing tougher clothing and denim is durable and can last a while.
Again, a poor of tough boots that would be able to hold out in the harsh conditions in which the character is living in. So it seems only logical to be wearing such kind of footwear.
PIC OF BACKPACK
I choose to have the character to have a backpack because I want to show my audience how the character is living. They’re constantly on the move, looking for any signs of hope the back pack re confirms this. In the scene the back pack will be open on the floor next to the character will bottled water and canned foods being visible on the floor all coming from this back pack.
Name: Arren Graham (But only referred to as Arren)
Arren as a character is a character who likes to reflect on things that have happened. He lives day-by-day to survive. He often reflects on humanity, how things would’ve been if we had all just gotten along. His psych is unstable as he has been left alone with no human communication or contact. He has given up hope but still fights to survive out of habit.
Arren is confident that he is the last person left after touring the country from England to Scotland. He is ill and he knows it, he has cursed himself for his own damnation and often question why he was the sole survivor. His illness, radiation poisoning is slowly creeping up to him as he knows he is dying.
This is a screenplay/monologue that I have written for my character. It includes what they are going to say and some smaller actions in their to show how they feel towards things. The influence in my monologue comes from various sources including history and media content such as films, graphic novels and TV shows that I have researched and used as influence towards the considerate thoughts and ideas and how they reflect to the personality of my character.
This is my storyboard which I have produced. I illustrated while carefully thinking about my story, this is because I didn’t want to make any mistakes with the story I had produced in my thoughts and to be able to document it clearly on paper. Another thing that I had focused
Shot one will act as the introduction. In this shot there will be various images shown of screen from both World Wars I/II. This shot will talk about these wars, the fatalities, outcomes and initial causes of these wars. This shot run alongside the soundtrack from the beginning but will also incorporate sounds from war such as planes flying by, bombs and gun shots. These are there to show what the character is thinking about.
This shot is transitioned to when the character is talking about the war and he begins to mention about the invention of the nuclear bomb. This shot introduces the audience to the view of a nuclear bomb cloud which will be supported with exploding sound effects and sirens.
The is an important shot as it’s the shot the audience finally get to see who is talking and what they look like. The character is introduced into the story in this shot. It will be a side view of the character. Their face won’t be visible because they’re wearing a hood. This shot is primarily a supportive shot to help transition from shot 2 to shot number 4.
This shot is an above the head view of the character, looking down at them from above their head. Their face still not visible due to the hood they’re wearing. In this shot the character will begin talking about themselves and a little about what has happened including where they are and what they’re feeling at the time.
Shot 5 is another shot of the character while they’re talking. In this shot the view of the character is direct and although they would be visible only their nose and mouth will be minimally visible due to the lack of light. The character’s upper face will be kept out of the frame. This is to add to the mystery of the character who they audience barely know.
In this shot I will be using found footage of abandoned cities, buildings streets and more to assist in creating an image for the audience as they are listening to the character talk about how it all happened.
This shot is a visualization of all the things the that character is mentioning as they think about ‘sound’. This shot is basically a visual thought of what the character is talking about and so will feature the things they’re talking about appearing as the character talks about each of them.
This will be a wide shot of the character. They will be in the middle of the shot and will be shrouded in the darkness. The view will be directly in front of the character yet their face will still not be visible due to the dark room and the character’s hood. In this shot the character is talking about how they have realised their truth to what they thought was actually happening to them.
This shot will be alongside the character’s voice as they describe their exploration through the country just surveying for any chance of hope.
This shot will go alongside the character when they start mentioning about ‘seeing the light’. I decided to go with the sun rising from the clouds as it helps represent what the character is talking about in the sense of them previously only seeing darkness but now the light has begun to rise above it all.
In this shot the character is remembering all the people they have lost: past friends, family members. Previously they had forgotten what they had looked like but as they’ve began to ‘see the light’ the character, Arren has began to remember them. Arren feels as if his family is ‘reaching out’ to him when in reality he is actually accepting his final moments peacefully.
Shot 12: This is the last shot which shows the character talking about being free. Within this scene the character will stop talking as their voice gets quieter and ending in silence. The scene will end with a fade transition which will lead to the credits.
My films setting is a post apocalyptic world where everything is destroyed or tattered and left to waste. Seeing as I am a student I have no means of being able to actually produce this world visually with my current resources. So I have thought of using an internal location, set inside where from here I can have my character describe the world outside to the audience. This will be a dark room as there is no electricity in this world. The room’s light source will be the natural light which is beaming into the room through the curtains.
PIC OF NAN’S SPARE ROOM.
I have chosen this location because it is empty with nothing on the walls with a window facing the garden. This is a good choice for me because it has recently been emptied by my grandfather. I think this will me a good location to shoot at as the look of this room matches the setting of my story.
PIC OF MARJES ROOM
This is another location that I knew would be a good place to film at. I chose this because it offers a lot of space to work with, setting up equipment and space for the character. This room does a good job of keeping out light which will be good for me. In this location I can also operate how much natural lighting can enter the room by opening/closing the curtain length to where I feel best.
Weighing the two up I feel that my first choice has the look but not the room. It also lacks curtains. My second choice is a darker room with more space for production and with a good amount of natural lighting which could easily light the whole room during daytime.
I have decided to film at my second location because of it’s black curtains and open space. Although I will be making some changes to the arrangement of the room on the day of production to make it feel more like an environment for my post apocalyptic story.
The Music and sounds
I want to find a soundtrack that is well suited to the themes of my film and one that would work with the pace of my character. I have looked on YouTube searching for Post Apocalyptic themes and music. I found various examples but noticed that most of them got to loud or fast as they progressed.
To make my film seem realistic I also want to incorporate some sounds that will compliment my character’s location. Sound that could be expected to be heard in a lonely and unforgiving setting.
Arn Andersson (2013) Epic Post Apocalyptic Music - Annihilation
For my film a want a soundtrack that can support the personality of my character. A soundtrack that keeps at a slow and steady pace as my character is speaking. I found this one called Annihilation by a composer called Arn Andersson. I found this piece of music by browsing YouTube for music that will fit my film. I decided to go with this one as I really like the steady piano key which assists the rest of the music and the way it progresses to higher volumes and decreases back down to silence at the end. I especially want to use this one as the end of the piece goes well with the script that I have written. I want my film to end in a place were it seems that the character has passed on peacefully and this does a good job of portraying this along with my character’s monologue.
Cryo Chamber (2015) Post Apocalyptic Dark Ambient Playlist
To make my sound feel realistic I want to include some extra ambient sound to go along with my character as they’re talking. I have listened to this numerous times and would like to use parts of it in my film. The thing I like about this ambient soundtrack is that the wind can be heard. Just these smaller details that are normally ignored in in life like the sound of the wind which is always being blown out by sounds of the environment like birds, cars and people talking. Although in this location the sound of the wind is just a constant reminder for the character, constantly informing them how they’re alone and the last living thing around.
I want to make my film look as great as possible so knowing what I want it to look like before editing is ideal knowledge. So I have been experimenting with some existing media to produce and develop my idea of what I want my film to look like.
I started by looking at my storyboard and thinking about what shots I can improvise before production. I decided to try and experiment with two of these scenes from my storyboard.
This is the first one, scene number 6 where in this scene torn buildings and a destroyed London is viewed.
Shisui Uchiha (2017) True Freedom experimental footage #1
In this scene I found various clips from YouTube and gathered them all into my editing software. I trimmed out the smaller parts that relate to my film. Most material I found was great and really suited my film’s planetary environment. While playing with the clips and sound I found that timing the space between each short scene with the music produced great effect which I really liked. Although, I wasn’t able to find any footage of a destroyed, empty London I did some from different locations. These scenes where gathered from American documentaries. While doing this I found that I actually liked showing how the rest of the world would like instead of just where my character resides.
Arn Andersson (2013) Epic Post Apocalyptic Music – Annihilation Available at: https://yotu.be/AtRuwYMC8Tc (Accessed: 22nd May)
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Cryo Chamber (2015) Post Apocalyptic Ambient Playlist Available at: https://www.yotube.com/watch?v=TMvwnDIhX48 (Accessed: 22nd May)
dribbble (No Date) Location GIF Available at: https://giphy.com/gifs/location-jt4feJ5xwfoXK (Accessed: 25/5/17)
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Shisui Uchiha (2017) True Freedom experimental Footage #1 Available at: https://www.youtub.com/watch?v=vM9C4utAF7s&feature=youtu.be (Accessed: 2/6/17)
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