I am very much looking forward to presenting the Weekend Film School in Sydney on this Saturday and Sunday May 21st, 22nd. One of my favourite parts of the Weekend Film School is how we get people to meet each other and network. On Sunday Afternoon, we launch film projects that then get produced over the following three months. If you are in town and have next weekend free, please enroll on one of the very best film making weekends, The Sydney Weekend Film School
What I want to talk about this week is Locations. Finding locations for your film is one of the easiest part of preproduction.
Tip One Do not be afraid to write as many locations into your script as you need for your story to be told. I love beautiful locationsand finding the best locations in your city is rather easy. There is an old adage in low budget film making that says “Shoot in a one loacation for three weeks and never move out of there. Yes that is called a play and there is nothing wrong with plays. But if you are shooting a movie, make the movie visual. One can do this by having appropriate locations in your film.
Tip Two . Only have one location move per day and do your best to to schedule only one location for a full shooting day. Over a 30 day shoot, you could have 30 locations. Moving in the middle of the day chews up time. I remember supervising a student short film called Money We only had a one day shoot and we had five locations to shoot in. We spent half the day in the car driving from one location to the other. If you have to change locations, only move once on the day. I know this seems contrary to what Tip One outlines. It is important to find the balance.
Tip Three: Make sure that you have a written agreement with the location owner. Most locations are free and are contributions to the film. Still it is very important to have an agreement. with the owner about the hours and day the location is needed for. Also outline
- Will the location get an end credit in the film?
- Will the location signage be seen in the film?
- Make sure that the location is free of all external people or customers. There is nothing worse than shooting in a cafe that is still open to the public. If the location has external people, pack up and go home.
Tip Four. Clean up the location after the shoot and make it cleaner than before you arrived. This is very important and I know I am stating the obvious.
If you get the owner excited about your film in advance of shooting and then when you leave the location, the owner is happy , you will help future film makers have an easy time. That could be you again. Invite the Location Owner to all parties and screenings. Leave a great impression.
Of the 55 locations that we found for The Makeover Feature Film, 44 of them were free. When an owner, contributes a location to your film, they are in a way an investor in your project.
On our courses, we teach you how to find locations with ease and for free. Find out more about our courses by clicking on an interesting course on our home page