That's a Wrap! Our Weekend Shooting the Trailer

September 2011 / Sept. 19, 2011 / by Gelb
That's a Wrap! Our Weekend Shooting the Trailer

The team has just finished our intensive weekend of filming for our trailer with Dean Love, our new mentor. It was a pretty wild time, very tiring, but hopefully very rewarding as well.

It all started on Friday. Amy and Chris both flew in from Brussels and Minneapolis respectively, and Dean took the train down from New York. Friday night mostly involved phoning around to make sure everyone had made it in safely, and to go through the planning of what was going to happen on Saturday and Sunday. Thankfully, everyone made it down safe, sound, and on-time.

Saturday morning, 8am - Dean and Elivia came and met with the rest of us at my house to plan out the day over bagels and coffee. After seeing the growing list of locations Dean wanted to shoot, I must admit, I was worried that we would not have the time to get everything done. After washing down our breakfast with second cups of coffee, we went out and started driving into downtown DC.

The first thing Dean wanted to do was to establish where we were - the nation’s capital. We therefore needed to see the bus in the nation’s capital. Now I don’t know about the last time you drove a 19,000 pound manual transmission vehicle down Pennsylvania Avenue, but it certainly was an interesting experience. First up was a shot of us driving past the Lincoln Memorial and coming over memorial bridge. While Elivia and Dean set up, we turned around in a parking lot and prepared ourselves to drive by. After getting the go-ahead, we zoomed over the bridge and past Dean who got the shot. We then somehow miraculously met back up with Dean and Elivia in one of the park parking lots and plotted our next move. The decision: Get the bus driving away from the Capitol building. An interesting and totally insane choice you might think. If so, you would be absolutely correct. Dean set up his tripod inside his vehicle, opened the trunk and drove slowly in front of us as we drove up Maryland Avenue away from the Capitol building, past the wandering eyes from the Capitol Police cars that were watching us very closely. Certainly a stressful situation but thankfully one that was jail-free.

We then made our way outside DC to a little town called Garrett Park near Kensington, MD. We found a great looking railroad station and some quaint buildings that whispered small-town America, and decided to have some shots there.

After Garrett Park, we headed over to just outside Silver Spring to have some lunch and plan the next challenge: Driving shots. These involved cameras placed on the bus as well as Dean and Elivia shooting us from Dean’s sunroof as we drove around an industrial estate. We did several loops around the estate and different roads nearby and then made our way back to Bethesda via Canal Road.

Over a few interpasses on Canal Road, Dean and Elivia captured the bus coming and going under the bridge. Our shooting was briefly interrupted by a very nice policeman who was curious about what we were doing. He stuck around for a few minutes and then wished us well before heading off. We had the shots we needed and moved on.

It was getting late and nearing sundown, so we drove to Walt Whitman High School’s parking lot for a video walk-around of the bus as well as some footage of some of us (Amy and Chris) ‘learning’ to drive. Hilarity and a potential injured neck from Dean ensued and after thoroughly scaring onlookers, we made our way back to my house.

It was getting dark, but the day was not finished! We set up lights inside the bus and Dean conducted interviews with the three of us in three different locations to be used in the trailer. All this time, Dean was showing us how to set up a shot and the importance of good lighting. Hopefully we did not yammer on for too long and gave him something he could work with.

It was after 10pm and we decided to call it a night and go in for supper. Day two was still to come, and Dean in his generous nature allowed us to start at 9am instead of 8. How gracious.

Sunday, 9am - After a quick breakfast we made our way out to River Road to search for suitable places to shoot to depict the bus driving in a variety of settings. We got a few passing shots of the bus coming around bends, and then it was time for the long drive shooting. At the end of River Road, Dean popped the trunk and we drove around for a while through fields and farms. We stopped near the Capital Polo Club and pulled over for some interior shooting of the bus, and wished Dean well on his way back to New York. Chris, Amy and I began our drive back to Bethesda, exhausted but excited.

That afternoon, Amy and Chris flew back to Minneapolis and Edinburgh, and the weekend was complete. It was exciting, grueling, interesting and educational, and we cannot wait to see what the finished product looks like. Be sure to check back to watch the trailer when it’s ready!