FF NEWS 8/16/15

As Summer wraps up, isn’t it about time Firmament Films did an update? Yes, yes it is.

2015 has been a very busy year for our merry band of filmmakers. The Princess Knight has taking up several weekends this year, pushing the team (along with Backflip Films) closer and closer to those final days of principal photography. Writer/Director T.C. De Witt had this to say:

It’s amazing what we have been able to accomplish in what is actually a very short amount of time. Though the production has been stretched over two years, we have only had about 40 days of actual filming. It’s very exciting to be down to those last and easily most difficult three scenes.

For those who were lucky enough to see the live stage productions of The Princess Knight musical, the scenes T.C. is referring to are the huge opening and closing numbers as well as the end of Act One. For those who did not get a chance to see the stage play that Firmament’s first feature is adapted from, these scenes require every single character on screen. That is nearly 50 moving bodies, a monumental challenge that the production crew is taking very seriously.

These scenes are crucial. We want to get them right. We want to open strong and go out on a huge note. There are shots that will have nearly every puppet in the film on camera at once. We’re going for a crazy-high difficulty level on this one. This means the most amount of preparation yet. It would be easy to get cocky this close to the end and think, “We got this”, but we are more determined than we have for the entire production to nail these scenes. — T.C.

The Princess Knight is scheduled to be wrapped early this Fall. With post production already in motion, we are moving closer and closer to that red carpet World Premiere.

This past March, we added a new trophy to our awards shelf. The theme to our Best Picture Winning 48 film Game Day received the international award for Best Song at the 2015 Filmapalooza festival at the Kodak Theater in LA. This is an incredible honor that we did not expect. If you would like to get the catchy tune that landed us the amazing award, you can watch it here!

In-between The Princess Knight and hitting the festival scenes, the team has kept busy with other projects. May brought the intense drama piece Esketan.

This short was developed with the goal of exploring non-verbal storytelling in film. Cinematographer Xerxes Sangco, whose work was previously seen in After April and To His Coy Mistress, painted a dramatic tone in the conversation piece. The camera angles were chosen with purpose. The piece subtly shows who is winning the dark conversation utilizing the angles and the focal lengths. The team was pushing the boundaries of the camera work seen so far in the Firmament library in the hopes of moving Firmament into a new level of film making. Ideally, one can watch the short and follow the story without hearing a word. The dynamic performances by Candace Ostler and T.C. De Witt certainly add to the nuances of the piece.

Rewatchmen KrisMeanwhile, our cinephile podcast The Rewatchmen welcomed three new official members to the roster: Writer/Director Kris Schulz, producer Chris Moehr, and actress Jessica Moehr are all now official members of the movie-centric podcast. Kris was given full tenure by getting an official Rewatchmen Cartoon avatar.

“Does that mean I get one too?” – Jessica
“Yes, but you have to wait at least three years.” Kris

A new podcast series was entered into the Firmament catalogue: The Un-Producibles. This live script reading series was produced In a joint effort with Ghost Hat Media. This series offers the audience a live reading of an unproduced script. Episode One was an original short film, whereas Episode Two features an early draft of Raiders of the Lost Ark. After the live performance, which captures all the charm of a live reading, including giggles and mistakes, the gathered performers discuss the possibility of producing the script. While The Rewatchmen discuss movies and television currently in the zeitgeist, The Un-Producibles focuses on film making itself – the technical side of creating film, theater, and more.

Just a short couple of weeks ago, Firmament Films produced a cross-country effort for the Charlotte, North Carolina 48 Hour Film Festival. Four members of the award winning Madison, WI team hit the road squished in a sea foam green Prius to join Firmament west in Los Angeles to produce the film that was then carry pigeoned to NC and the hands of Firmament East. The 48 is a staple of the Firmament library. It is a test of skill and creativity to conceptualize, create, and complete a 7 minute film, but even more, it is just so much darn fun. Violet will be available for viewing online next week after the live screening in Charlotte on Thursday. Come back for more details on the multi-State endeavor.

And while Firmament continues to develop our projects, Firmament is so proud of our team and our dear friends for the work they are accomplishing. Please take a moment to enjoy the fine work being produced by Backflip Films and the Bit Life Show:

Chad Halvorsen’s 1-Minute Gamer is a kinetic, comedic tornado of video game reviews where the award winning performer offers up a video game review in a minute or less.

Jeff Bell’s Bit by Block is a Let’s Play series where the creative mastermind behind Ghost Hat Media constructs movie themed structures in 3D game space.

And get a glimpse behind the curtain of film making with Working Title. The hour long video podcast series produced in Backflip Film studios is a wonderfully insightful interview series that brings on filmmakers from every aspect of production, from directors, to editors, the cinematographers, to gaffers. Backflip Films is becoming one of the premiere production houses in the Midwest, and Firmament is honored to be so closely associated with them.

We would also like you all to take a look ath what Benjamin To of The Rewatchmen has been up to with The Band With No Name Film Company, his Southern California based movie group. TBWNN recently snagged an Audience Choice Award at the San Diego 48 Hour Film Fest for their short We Are Professionals.. With 106 teams in the festival, this is a great win! Congratulations Ben!

Finally, we have some great things coming this Fall. Several of our members will be participating in the annual Madison 48. We have been hard a work completing a lengthy sci-fi film that will certainly knock the socks off anyone who watches it. And, hopefully, the Troll will be returning with new episodes of The Troll Blog.

Come back again soon for some exciting stuff from our family, and thank you for all your continued support!

F.F.

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