Principal Photography is (Essentially) Finished! / by Richard Something

After an entire summer of shooting, principal photography on HELL! is essentially finished. Thank you to everyone who has given their time and talent to this project (and to those who still have some time and talent to give)! It means everything to Jamie, George, and me that you’ve made the movie we first started discussing three years ago better than we could ever have done alone. 

What does it mean that principal photography is essentially finished? 

Jamie Milliken as Roger Oddcock at 25th Street Studios in Oakland earlier this month 

Jamie Milliken as Roger Oddcock at 25th Street Studios in Oakland earlier this month 

We still have a few small scenes and filler shots left to film, all of which we plan to knock out over the first few weeks in October. 

We have a lot of editing to do. Like a lot. Like a whole lot. We have well over 2 Terabytes of data and roughly 40 hours of footage that will ultimately be cut into a 1 hour and 40 minute movie. 

The editing process will involve putting together a rough cut, color correcting it, tightening that rough cut, and then mixing the sound. Sound will be the most difficult part of all, as virtually every sound effect you’ll hear on screen (from footsteps to coffee mugs being set down to car crashes) will be created separately. Meticulously building a soundtrack that's interesting, cohesive, and realistic is one of the most under appreciated parts of filmmaking.  

Riah Gouvea as Brunch and Land Smith as The Sound Engineer witnessing Roger's greatness. 

Riah Gouvea as Brunch and Land Smith as The Sound Engineer witnessing Roger's greatness. 

Next time you watch a movie, really listen to some of the scenes. Just about everything you hear (aside from most of the dialog) was recorded later and added during post-production. Not getting this mix right can and will make a film seem amateurish. We obviously want to avoid this as we'd like HELL! to sound professionalish at worst. We already have amazing music from Jamie and it's important the rest of the sound match that. 

But as we prepare to dive into editing, the great thing is that we filmed almost entirely on schedule, at a variety of interesting locations, with an incredible collection of actors who brought their own vision and improvements to their roles. Instead of trying to find good takes while editing, we'll be struggling to choose which excellent take is the best one for the scene. That's a great spot to be in.