Friday, 6 March 2009

Editing for the final cut

When we had all our footage it was easy to see where we wanted the shots to be. We all had a clear picture of what the opening sequence would look like but it was just a case of seeing if it would work.
We used short shots to reflect what real film openings would look like. We tried to fit the shots with the soundtrack and by doing that we had to lengthen shots and shorten them in different places. The one shot which took a lot of time over was Jake's shot, when he walks into his "house". I decided that it should have some sort of zoom in and zoom out, to make the scene look more weird. I cut the shot to make this look effective and put the zoom in throughout the zoom out shots. This editing worked really well with what we were trying to achieve and fitted the soundtrack well. It also showed that Jake was really the main character and he needed to have some of the editing done in his shot to lengthen it etc.
We used simple transitions to keep the social realist theme. They looked good as there was a lot going on in every shot and there was no need to overcrowd it and have too much going on with specialised transitions. Our titles were kept simple for the same reason as above, so as not to make it look like too much.
With the way it was edited, there is a shot type variation in every shot. There arent 3 close ups in a row, or 4 long shots in a row - we purposely made it so it was varied so it didnt look boring. With the final scene where Jake passes out on the table, there is a fading out transition to finish off the opening sequence. The word Coke appears (which is the name of our film) and it stays there while Jake passes out. This fits well as it shows what Coke and bad substances can do to someone, so there is a message in the final part of the opening sequence.


Final cut

This is our final cut.


Thursday, 5 March 2009

Our Animatic board

We had problems with this when we first tried to upload it this is why we have only just uploaded it now!! We did not keep strictly to what the animatic board said as we realized that we would need to use too many effects which would go against the conventions of our genre, for example we had a lot of split scenes which we chose to leave out, we still used the ideas of the stills but did not have them as split scenes.


Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Final Filming

We re-did our alcohol scene because we were not happy with it because it looked to staged. Nobody was talking or laughing. We got a few friends to come and make it look more realistic and a few bottles of alcohol. We asked people to be a bit loud and all over the place. We felt that this second shot at it looked more realistic. We also filmed Rosie walking past putting in some headphones. We are going to use this shot for when the soundtrack switches to a different pace/sample and the music that is playing looks like it is the music that Rosie is listening to.


Friday, 27 February 2009


Our soundtrack was compramised of several layers put together. In total i used eleven layers put together, fading them in and out at the right parts. I used ten samples and on some of them i changed the effects. On one of the samples i added some gate to it and some overdrive to make it seem a bit 'trippy'. I was also going to flange it a bit but this came across to alienated. I chose the samples i did because i wanted to create a RnB soundtrack with a bit of trance/techno. Some of the trance/techno was in the alcohol scenes because i wanted things to seem slightly longer. The music i created was aimed more towards teenagers because a lot of teenagers listen to trance and RnB. Some of the samples i selected were trance and others were RnB or Electric Drum Beats. In one of the scenes we changed the beat for when Rosie puts some music on; giving the impression that this is the music she is listening to.


Rough Cut

A lot of our rough cut had to be edited although it was only a rough cut. In many of our scenes we had began filming too soon so we had the setting up of the shot on film. Also as we had filmed our sequence in the wrong order due to the weather conditions, this meant that we had to change the order in our rough cut in order for it to make sense. We had a few scenes where the character looked at the camera, which made it seem under cuts the realism which we were trying to achieve. we realized that we have got a few scenes which need to be improved, so we are going to re shoot these on Tuesday. We also want our final cut to be longer so we are going to add in a few shots too, this should not take too long but will improve our final sequence.

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Monday, 23 February 2009

Half Term Events

Picking Up of Equipment:
On Wednesday of the half term we both went to collect the equipment from college so we could film the scenes out of college, we wanted to pick it up during half term because this allowed us to film during the half term days, making more time for us to edit. As last time we had a very rushed schedule, so we could not film and edit to our full potential. We filmed on the weekend of the half term as this is when the character of Rosie's mum, Caroline was avaliable to film.

Filming outside of college:
As in our last piece of coursework Beth was the main character, I (Beth) was not involved in most of the filming process, so for our film opening, I did all the filming outside of college. However, we all discussed how the shots would be filmed and I took all our opinions into consideraion. One problem we encountered was that we couldn't take our storyboard out of college as the room was closed. Therefore we could not film our scenes exactly as the storyboard suggested, but they are closely based on them as we could remember most of what we had written. We did not have any problems when filming outside of college.


Friday, 13 February 2009

Tom's illness

At the moment, a member of our group is ill; Tom. he hasn't been here all this week so we have had to do filming and blogging on our own. However we have coped very well. we have had to find another boy to take his place as he was a main role in our film.


Camera equipment

As we began filming today we did encounter some problems with the camera equipment. Firstly our tripod was very stiff, which meant it was hard to move the camera in the direction which we wanted in order to create the right shot type. We were going to try and attempt to hand held the camera but this proved to be harder than we thought. Finally we changed our tripod so our filming was successful. Apart from this one problem everything seemed to run smoothly. We were a lot more confident this time filming because we were more familiar with the equipment.


Taking the camera home.

Several of our scenes need to be shot at a house, but as Tom is ill at the moment, we had to include a new character to take his place. We used a table in the refectory as his table at home, and we are going to film at my house and use it as Rosie's house. We had a problem as we all go home before the end of the day, so we can't take the camera home at the end of today. Instead, we are going to collect the camera on the Wednesday of half term and film the scenes we need to and bring it back on the first day back. Once we have filmed at my house, we only need to film a couple of scenes at college which include Rosie and her friends socialising together. When we have done these scenes, we are going to use the final few lessons to edit our scenes and make a rough-cut.



Due to the icy weather conditions, we had to change the setting of some of our scenes. Scenes 1 and 2 were supposed to be shot on an open green, but we had to change our plans. It is still the same footage, but we had to film in the quad at Long Road because of the solid ground. The only problem we encountered was the people walking across the quad as it is a busy area for students, and the ice made the ground quite slippery.


Filming the first part of our rough opening sequence

This was our first time filming, and we sorted out a few issues we had and made the best of a bad situation. Tom wasn't here as he was ill so we had to find new characters to play the parts, and film with just the 3 of us (Beth, Rosie & I). We spent a while searching for 3 boys to play the parts and eventually found some from another media group. Props weren't a problem as Rosie & I had both bought alcohol bottles from home to use as the teenagers drinking in the park. We then had to find somebody in the college who smokes, and borrow a cigarette so we could give it to the main boy, who Tom was meant to be playing. We had to teach the boys what to do and our main character (Jake Crick) played Tom's part well, taking on board what we said and doing it quickly so we could get the rest of our filming done, so this wasnt a problem.
We had to change our setting from Tom's house to the school canteen, as it would have been a problem for Jake to take the camera home as he had work of his own to do. We changed it so our main character now lives and goes home to an orfans institute (or something of that kind) to make it more realistic.


Monday, 9 February 2009

Character Info;

Character Information:

We have chosen to have a female and a male main character, as well as this fitting in with our story, we wanted to have a female and male because we felt that it would make our film more appealing to both genders. It is more likely that the audience will be able to relate to one of the two main characters this way, making it more realistic and easier to sympathise with the story. We also have some other characters in our film opening, these characters are not focuses

Our first main character is Tom. Tom is a 17 year old boy. He comes from a very rich family, both his parents are very wealthy, however both parents are hardly ever at home, meaning Tom is left in their big house for weeks on end. Money is not an issue for Tom as his parents give him whatever he wants. This is how Tom gets his money for his drug dealing business. Although his parents give him whatever he needs, from a young age they havent been around enough, causing Tom to go off the rails. His house is normally very messy, full of alcohol and occasionally drugs.


  • Dark clothes; This is so he doesnt draw too much attention to himself
  • Normally hooded; This is to create something shifty about Tom.
  • Baggy clothes
  • Occasionaly a cap

Our second main character is Rosie. Rosie is also 17, and attends the same school as Tom. Rosie lives with her parents and her sister. She lives a very typical life, and is a very outgoing girl, she is out a lot with her friends.

  • Jeans
  • T-shirt
  • Fashionable
  • Made up


Prop list

Prop List;

In many of our scenes, Tom is seen smoking/with cigarettes, implying he smokes, even if we never actually show him smoking, the audience will get the impression that he smokes if he is always holding a cigarette or lighting up a cigarette.

-Alcohol bottles (which we be filled with water!)Our very first scene features alchol. Our character Rosie and her friends are drinking alcohol. One of our scenes, is just a close-up of the alcahol bottles, therefore we need to use alcahol bottles as a prop.

Coccaine(obviously not real coccaine!). We may need to have a substance which looks like coccaine,such as sherbert. This is because in one of the scenes, which is filmed in the character of Toms house, we may have some coccaine in the background, to give the audience the impression that he is into drugs. But not give too much away. We just want to give an insight into the character.

All the props which we have used are very relevant to our genre- a British social realist drama. As our story is based around a group of teenagers, we have made them a very typical stereotype of teenagers (much like the TV series skins). This is why alcohol, drugs, and smoking are shown a lot in our opening sequence.


Saturday, 7 February 2009


The soundtrack for our opening sequence is mainly RnB, and eerie at some point. We needed some music that youngsters would listen to, to make sure the target audience knew that it was their type of film. The music we made had a lot of bass and beats, but was quite mellow and slow, to show that the teens were calm whilst drinking. We used bass, with guitar and club beats mixed in. In this day and age, young people who are slightly rough and wear certain clothes would be called chavs, so we used the kind of music that chavs would listen to. The club beat was mixed in to give it a bit of tune and make it lighter.
When our female character (Rosie) sees our male character (Tom), the music gets slightly eerie and we added something in to make it seem abnormal. This works really well with our storyboard as the eerie music is just at the right time for the picture of Rosie looking at Tom.
The beat at the end of the soundtrack was put there seperately to the rest of the bass and tune etc so it could be used to introduce a new scene. For example, Rosie walks home and into a house and goes upstairs to her room. As she is walking towards her room, the bass and tune fade out and we are left with the beat. Rosie then walks to put her stereo on, and the music changes into just the beat, as if that is the music she has put onto her stereo.


Friday, 6 February 2009


1. An open space (school field). This is where we film the first 9 shots. We chose to film the majority of our shots in an open space, this is because it is very stereotypical of teenagers to be out on public greens, such as parks and recreation grounds. Another British stereotypical view of teenagers is that they are out on these spaces causing trouble, for example; under age drinking. This is what our teenagers are doing during these shots, under-age drinking. This is a main convention of a British social realist drama is to have 'taboo subjects' and we think that underage drinking is a big problem in Great Britain and many people try and believe that it doesn't happen as much as people believe it does. We also chose to film outside because we wanted a variety of shots inside and outside to make our film opening more interesting.

2. Inside shots; inside two rooms in a house. This is so that the audience gets an insight into the characters houses and what their lives are like. It also shows the difference between Rosie and Toms home life, and what kind of background they have both come from. Rosie's house is clean and tidy, and on the other hand, Tom's house is messy and not very clean.

In this lesson we are going to go location scouting so that we can see where the best place to shoot our scenes are.

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shooting schedule

FRIDAY 13th February: Around college
-Shot 1; As we need an open space, we are filming on the school field during lesson time
-Shot 2; Following on from shot 1, this is also filmed on the school field
-Shot 3; Same as above
-shot 4; Same as above
-Shot 5; Same as above
-shot 6; Same as above
-Shot 7; Same as above
-Shot 8; Same as above
-Shot 9; Same as above

Out of College filming;
-Shot 10; This is also filmed in Coton (like shot 13). However the majority of indoors filming is in a different room and the outdoors filming is filmed in a different part of Coton, down a small caldesack.
-Shot 11; Same as above
-Shot 12; Same as above
-Shot 13; Coton, Cambridgeshire. This shot is our first shot which is filmed out of college , we have chosen to film this in Rosie's house as her kitchen is currently being re-decorated so it looks very messy and like a building site which is the effect which we wanted for the character of Tom's house. Leading up to the part of the shot in the house, we are filming down the main high street of Coton.
-Shot 14; Rosie's house
-Shot 15;Rosie's kitchen, in her house
-Shot 16; Coton


Thursday, 29 January 2009

Shot List...

In our opening sequence, we are going to use a variety of different camera shots. here is a list of the ones we are going to use:

- Medium Shot: This is when the camera is around 3-5 metres away from the characters. We decided this would be a good shot to use because we can include all the characters we want to in the shot, and you can still make out their faces clearly.

- Long Shot: This is when the characters are far away from the camera, and sometimes you can't make out their faces, just their figures. We wanted to include this type of shot as it will show the characters, and it will also show the background, and the setting of where they are.

- Close-up: This is when the camera focuses on one thing, normally a persons face. We decided to include some close-ups to show the audience the characters faces clearly.

- Split Scene: This is when the scene divides in to two or more different pictures in the same scene, to try and show the audience separate events at the same time. We have included this type of shot so we can show the audience what Rosie and Tom are both doing at the same time.

- Extreme Close-up: This is when the camera focuses on one object or facial feature, eg an eye. We wanted to include this so the audience can focus only on the thing shown.

- Over the shoulder shot: This is when the camera shows someone or something, with a characters shoulder in the side of the shot. We have included this shot so we can include Rosie and Tom in the same scene without them being close.


Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Our Moodboard

Our moodboard is a collage of images together. We put in it typical factors that are in a British Socialist realist drama. Alcohol, housing estates, drugs, sometimes domestic violence, drugs, fighting and school/college life. These are all of the factors that are going to be in our Film. In our film Tom is going to start abusing Rosie because he is hooked on drugs. And Rosie has also got hooked on drugs. So we got two pictures of Domestic Violence and Drugs. Unlike a lot of British socialist realist drama's we are going to take out a lot of the home life and show what happens to the teenagers when there away from home and focus more on the school/college life. This will show what there like when there completely independent. A lot of teenagers drink and smoke so i got a picture of a varitey of different alcohol brands, and when people are fueled with alcohol they become violent and abusive so i got a picture of some fighting aswell. This is why we chose the images we did.



One group described our idea as being original, this was good because we wanted our idea to be original because there are a lot of this type of genre films around which are very similar. When we were analyzing our film introductions which fitted in with our genres, we wanted to take some of the idea but without it being too similar to those that are already around. We also got told that our it portrays' people's problems well this is also good because we wanted to get peoples problems across this was one of our main aims as normally issues like the ones in our film are seen as taboo subjects. At the time when we presented our work our mood board was not uploaded, this caused us some problems when presenting because we had to describe what was on it with no visual aid.

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Our Logo, Sparks Production

We got our logo idea from brainstorming company names. We thought that we could come up with a name that was to do with Fireworks; this then lead us to the idea of Sparks-Production. We then got an image of some water at nighttime and placed a picture of Fireworks over it. We wanted to create a colourful logo that people would remember and associate with the two words Sparks and Production. Our logo has a variety of colours in it, and alongside with the water and the stars it create quite a picturesque, mystical environment.


Friday, 23 January 2009

Mood Board Analysis of Mise en Scene

We have created a mood board showing the different elements of mise en scene we want to feature in our film opening. We have included a picture of a house. We think we should have the main characters home involved because it sets a scene which people can get used to and which the audience keeps coming back to. It also shows what the main character's home life is like, and shows what class they are, e.g. working class, middle class. Showing the audience her home introduces her family. We also thought alcohol would be a good element of mise en scene to include as most British social realist dramas feature it. It is a big part of youth, and it means we can create some of the characters as alcoholics. We have put a photo of fighting in our mood board because it is going to be a strong feature of our sequence. Violence is a strong feature of British social realist dramas. Violence we want to feature includes domestic violence towards Rosie, which again is a strong feature of this genre of this film. We have included a photo of a school in our mood board because this creates another main setting for the film, and shows the age of the characters.


Thursday, 22 January 2009

Analysis of Kidulthood

The opening of this film is mainly focusing on a teenager who is being bullied by other students at her school. This is a very typical convention of a British social realist drama. It is filmed in a school which is a typical choice of social groups and cliques. There are many stereotypical types of people, for example girls that only obviously care about their looks all huddled together, boys in big coats all talking under their breath to each other etc. The girl who is being bullied looks like a very normal girl, which emphasises that anyone could be a victim. this is alot like our opening sequence, as Rosie is a normal girl who is being victimised for no reason. The actors have London accents which is an obvious accent for a British person to have and probably the first one that people think of. A boy is going round the school asking people to go to his party which is another typical convention of a British film, and a stereotypical view of teenagers.


Analysis of This is England

The opening for this film shows many different events that have taken place in England in the past, for example, Princess Diana's wedding. Most of them either relate to the Royal family, political issues or war and violence. These images give the audience an impression of what England is like. The music being played in the background is called 'Louie Louie' by Toots and the Maytals. It is a Jamaican song which sounds quite relaxed, and is a contrast to what is being shown in the scenes. It's a typical song that a British person would like. The credits are shown in the corner so that they don't distract the audience from whats being shown in the scenes. The text is white and very simple. Throughout the credits there are little video clips of celebrities, e.g. the Royal Family, doing silly things, for example there is a woman in the very beginning of the credits in nice clothes and then with a hat on, which looks quite funny. There is also a clip of a video game, which shows that this clip dates back quite far as it is bad quality on an old tv. It shows that the programme wont be just about things in the present.


Thursday, 15 January 2009

Research on logos

We decided to go on to you tube and onto google to get some images of some popular logos and to watch some which appear at the beginning of films. Firstly we looked at the 'walt disney' logo, this is because walt disney is a very popular film production. The walt disney logo is a simple design, which just by the logo you can tell that the film is going to be aimed at a younger audience, this is because of the 'fun' font which it uses. The logo is not just plain black, it also appears in multicolour. The castle which features in the logo gives the audience an idea that it is a fairytale type film because castles feature in films such like this. As well as the logo appearing as a still image it also appears at the start of the film as a moving image. During this the castle which is features appears slowly, lighting up from the top to the bottom; this adds to the magical idea which is being portrayed. The music is very dramatic and entertaining, it has a happy element too it which is good because the films always have a happy ending because they are aimed at children.
We then chose to analyse the warner bros logo, this is because it is another logo which appears at the beginning of films so we thought it would help us in designing ours. As this appears at films such as; the matrix. These films do not have a specific genre unlike the walt disney logo. This logo is simple, using two simple primary colours, there neutral so not implying anything, this is because warner bros produce films for all different genres, so there is no need to try and give an impression to an audience. It is a simple shape, however it is still effective as being a well known popular logo.


Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Spy Kids; Island of Lost Dreams part 1 commentary

The first image we get is the camera moving towards a theme park. The image is colourful and bright, taking full advantage of the fact that colour interests children. There are people of all ages, families almost, with various props e.g. balloons, hats and the big cartoon cut out of the theme park's mascot. These images are exactly what you would find in a real theme park and they have chosen to do this to make it more realistic, contradicting the fact that the film is to do with an unrealistic family that have to save the world. The crowd soon clears so we are moving closer towards the circle around a little girl in a stereotypical pink dress, as we later find out is the presidents daughter. The camera then zooms into a few seconds shot of the Press' cameras flashing to take photos of the little girl. The girl is happy to be smiling and waving into the camera which shows she is used to it and used to all the attention. The camera zooms out to show a tall man looking down, as the camera does a low shot, as if from a child's point of view. The Press' cameras all turn to take photos of the man and the camera zooms back into him again. Behind the man is the rollercoaster that is so high it would usually make most children feel frightened. As the camera is a low shot, it accentuates how big the rollercoaster is and makes it seem a lot bigger. The girl agrees to go on it, showing she is brave and willing to show off, wanting the cameras back on her. The shot then goes straight to a rollercoaster that goes straight into the air, and is again a low shot, showing the man as taller than he really is, meaning to be dominant and more powerful. The rollercoasters we are being shown throughout this scene are all fake and made out to be frightening. They would never appear in real theme parks and this shows that the film has some element of non-realism in it.


Friday, 9 January 2009

Conventions of different genres

- A main female role
- A main male role
- A problem which needs to be solved
- Romance; between the main females and male roles
- Comedy
- Love triangles
- Secrets
- Lies
- A happy ending or cliffhanger onto the sequal
- A place of education, e.g School

- Hand held camera work
- A stereotypical working class family
- A Taboo subject eg; racism

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Thursday, 8 January 2009

Casino opening analysis

I think that the opening for the action film 'Casino Royale' is particularly good, as it attracts the audiences attention and leaves them wanting to watch the rest of the film. The sequence begins on an empty street at night and includes a low angle shot looking up at a building, which the audience immediately assumes will be important in the next part of the film. the darkness and emptiness of the setting creates tension for the viewer. In the first few seconds, a car drives towards the building and then stops outside, which tells the audience the character in the car will be an important one in the rest of the film as well as the building shown. The car is black which follows on with the darkness theme which already exists. Some text reading 'PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC' appears at the bottom left hand corner of the shot. This establishes the setting and the location for the next scene. Another low angle shot shows a man getting out of the car and shutting the door; which is the first sound we hear in this scene. This is a low shot and the lighting is mostly dark but is illuminating the mans face. The light also illuminates the scenery behind the man so we can make out it is a row of flats/offices/just tall buildings. As the man walks away from the camera, the shot goes straight to the building that was behind the man. The shot is a low shot, and shows the man in the lift that is going upwards from the camera. There is then a close up of the mans face with half of it in light, half in darkness. This represents that the man has two sides to him and subconciously we think this. As the lift is still getting higher, we look at it from slightly above. The man looks undisturbed and calm as the camera is still on a close up and viewing the lift from above, therefore showing the building as if it is going down. Numbers then appear on the screen as it is the lift going up and this creates suspense. There is a long shot showing the man walking towards something and the shot includes machinery and a narrow walkway. The same man then walks into a room that is dark, but the light that is coming in is causing shadows on the objects in them, making them look bigger and overpowering. The man again is been shot in a close up and the light is again illuminating half of his face. The darkness of the room makes the audience focus on the characters. There is then a flashback to one of the characters who is in the room, and another man who is not. They are in a toilet cubicle fighting which makes the audience wonder why they are fighting, and who the other man is. The other man then gets killed. When the flashback is over, we go back to the other room where the two characters are. One of them points a gun at the other one which created suspense for the audience. Then the man who was pointing the gun gets shot, which is a shock for the audience, no one saw it coming.


Friday, 28 November 2008