Shooting Diary - Day 8

A 5:30am wakeup call. Have to shave because I'm in front of the camera al day today. I grab my DIT suitcase and backpack with my script and head out the door. Back up to the Upper West Side for the day. This is our main characters' neighborhood, and where much of the film's action is supposed to happen. Today should be fairly smooth running and straightforward as there aren't too many scenes on the docket. However, the forecast predicts definite rain and we must be ready to roll with the punches. After a quick discussion with our data manager about yesterday's footage, I hop into wardrobe and makeup to get ready for the first scene.

In a last-minute switch the, first scene up is a simple scene with me entering a building.  Upon looking at our shot list, we realize that Zak and I were overeager in our estimation of what this scene needs and condense our three shots into one, sexy dolly shot. Sounds good. The morning is beautiful, the crew is in a good mood, and we start the day off right by nailing  a fairly simple shot. We pat ourselves on the backs and move on.

With a mini move to the next block we shoot the exterior scenes of  the title character, Harold's apartment. Because we don't have any money for this location (spent it all last week), we place an actor in a doorman costume and stand him in front of a ritzy building on West 77th Street. Permitted for the sidewalks, we set up our shots and steal the location exterior with the support of the building amicable Super. By lunch, we have two scenes in the can, with a light afternoon ahead of us.

At lunch, I get to meet the newest member of the cast, Fred Melamed, who is on set for his costume fitting. I'm thrilled to have him in my movie as I am huge fan. Fred has appeared in a host of films over the years from Hannah and Her Sisters to A Serious Man. He will be playing my favorite character in PHB, "Jimmy Basmati".

After a hamburger, we knock out the remaining shots using the "stolen" building exterior. We are making terrific time, but it begins to drizzle as we set up for a long tracking shot for our biggest and final scene for the day. The rain starts and stops, but never really causes a problem. After being very pleased with the framing and camera movement of our master shot for the scene, we decide to forego doing any coverage and just continue to do take after take on a simple "walk and talk" down a sidewalk. This is all we have left to do in the day, so we go until the bell rings. Today, the bell rang when the sun left the clouds around 6:00pm and began to give us lighting issues.

Just as we wrap, the heavens open up and torrential downpour ensues. Lucky us.

Tomorrow is another interior. We will be in the East Village all day and with quite a few extras as well. There will also be two new actresses will be on-set, which I am very excited about. More tomorrow. Good night internet.