There’s no point in guessing, just how did you get that roving camera pov – it feels as if it’s a one shot but perhaps with a few editorial cuts at the doorways?
I’d be lying if I said there were no cuts in there but I’m reluctant to give up where they are! We (myself, Pat Scola the DP, Allen Scudder (AD) and Alex Kornreich the steadicam op) spent alot of time before the shoot meticulously working through our set ups and putting together a very detailed beat sheet which in turn dictated our transition in and out points between set ups. We had initially factored in up to twelve transition points, but amazingly got it down to two – which is tantamount to Allen’s stone cold on point ADing and Alex’s killer skillset.
And what camera and kit did you use?
We shot on an Alexa with Cooke primes and Alex’s set up.
The location must have been key to getting these manoeuvres – where did you find it and did your script adapt to the setting?
We were hugely fortunate that David (Cho, the local producer in LA) managed to find EXACTLY what we needed from the location. Everything you see is what was written as per the original treatment. I’m still stunned how he managed to get a location that was so on point. Suffice to say we had a long tech rech where myself, Pat and Alex basically danced the whole video through the motel and courtyard and left feeling pretty good about realising such an ambitious project.
What were the major challenges of the shoot and production and how did you resolve them?
Basically once we had our beat sheet it all became about moving the camera through our space within our predetermined time frames and ensuring our cast were hitting their marks. We had three set ups which we shot totally out of sequence all of which needed to be timed out to the second, primarily as we neeed to ensure we matched our transition in and out points. Each time we started shooting a new sequence we started off being wildly off time, but gradually we found ourselves getting closer and closer and eventually we were exactly where we needed to be. Once again, I can’t sing Alex the Steadicam OP’s praises enough.
What was the original brief? We really like the sub-plot tableaux – how did the narrative evolve? We guess the title Lost and Not Found had something to do with it.
The band wanted a video which felt like a classic early mid to nineties trip hop video – they referenced Massive Attack’s Unfinished Sympathy in the brief, which I have always been a huge fan of. They also wanted the video to be aesthetically an extension of their video for Blind Faith, but brought through to the mid nineties.
My idea always had two very distinct elements to it, the narrative and the look. The narrative is very much a play on the notion of the lost and not found of society, most obvious through the missing girl narrative but there are a number of other nods to that throughout the video. In terms of the look there are any number of things going on there but primarily it’s all to do with the colour and the degradation process we put the video through. The Mill did an amazing job of transfering the video to tape and recapturing it all with two different grades applied. The video is meant to look like it’s been pulled from an archive and then slung up on YouTube – like a piece of retrouvé – which is the main reason it can only be viewed at 480p!
Were there any shots you loved but ended up in the editing trash?
Haha – we had 10 hours of shooting three ridiculously technical set ups – there were no additional shots or sequences. What you see is what we shot and that nearly killed us.