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Production in Deep

25 Apr

 

Hey Mediadreamzers

OMG! Seriously how long has it been since I lasted posted on my blog. I feel like I have been on the Channel 4 show ‘The Hunted’, where you disappear off the grid. My reason for not posting for such a long time is one of my colleagues was signed off with stress a few months ago, so I have been working a lot of shifts in the production gallery. With working a lot I haven’t been able to attend networking events or do as much as other media work; my colleagues health is more important and was happy to hep out. With the amount of work I did in the gallery I think I was on course for getting a blue plaque, or even an OBE.

I digress a little, so back on track after so long I attended a RTS event in London and it was a lot closer to the main train stations in London and I shocked myself in finding it and not needing to resort to Google Maps.
The venue for the networking event was practically round the corner from Kings Cross so not far from Platform 9 3/4 shop for those who like Harry Potter. Made it to Kings Place in plenty of time and I also discovered that there are a lot of publishing houses not far from Kings Cross station, and I now know where The Guardian and The Observer are in London.

 

 

 

 

 

The event I was going to was ‘Diving beneath the Waves:The Making of Blue Planet II’. Yes the natural documentary series narrated by the legendary Sir David Attenborough (wish he could have been there too). However, the special speakers were an Assistant Producer called Sarah, Executive Producer James and the Natural documentaries Series Producer Mark with the event chaired by Torin Douglas.

 

 

Once we were in the hall, the whole place was illuminated with guess what colour light, o.k I’ll tell you-Blue. Once in Torin introduced the guests who said a little about themselves and their work background on projects and how they got involved in this area of media. The questions that were asked were things that I guess we have thought about when watching these types of programs how certain things are filmed, how production teams capture certain shots and clips; are they planned or is it just by sheer luck, locations, scripting, choosing music, the work relationship between the scientists and the media teams in creating the episodes etc.This was interspersed with clips chosen by the panel that they said where there favourite. One clip was Sharks enjoying seafood spoils, seeing a media sub and attacking it (Sharks thought the sub was a threat to the food they had and were constantly colliding with the sub) Luckily the people in the sub were unharmed and the Sharks then realised the sub was no threat (clip chosen by Mark).

The next clip was narrated by Sir David about a sea creature called the Bobbet, I admit I had never heard of a Bobbet and knew nothing about it. Well, a Bobbet is a sea worm that eats fish- yes there s=is such a thing. Seeing the clip made people jump when it went in for the kill. (clip chosen by Sarah).

      

The final clip shown was again narrated by Sir David and it showed a cluster of small fish were forced to clustered together by dolphins and how this attracted not just dolphins but birds, swordfish and other bigger fish to eat the smaller fish and how in less than 20 mins they are gone.

        

The audience was then invited to ask questions and there was a mixed bag of things people were asking the panel and it was interesting to hear and learn more about. Before this ended we were treated to clips featuring other members of the production crew and their contributions to creating the series. One clip really amazed me; how crew manage to get the cameras onto the animals in order to capture footage of what they see and where they go and how the footage is used in the series.

  

  

 

Afterwards, the bar was open and time to network was everyone. Before leaving to head home, I got the chance to chat the the people on the panel and was a great evening.

 

 

I am happy to say that the next event will be in about 2 weeks and I am happy to say that I am off work on that day so more to follow. Hopefully there will be more events coming up to share, and it won’t be a long gap before my postings.

Nuquam Deditionem

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Christmas Cheering Round One

8 Dec

Hey Mediadreamzers

Festive season is soon to be upon us, of course and one thing, rather strike that two things that have shocked me so far, one is that I got my Christmas shopping done by the end of November, normally I get it done on second or third week. The second is that I have been invited to three media Christmas parties and my first one was last night in where other than the capital.

So after playing dress up and trying to make myself look pretty, heading to the station and getting to the Capital, specifically Farringdon to Dado54. I am surprised I found it without getting lost and once in it was free champagne and photo shoot A-list style. It was nice to meet one of my media producer contacts face to face; Jonathan. Soon more guests arrived and I admit it was not just people that work in media; lawyers, people who work with politicians, photographers, event organisers and lots more. One thing that gets me down is time is on overdrive when I am in the Capital or at a party and in my guess it was double the speed being in Capital.

I eventually drag my ass back home after midnight and all I can say is what an ace party definitely a 10/10, I just hope that my next party on the 15th is gonna be as awesome as this one. Back to the Capital again today to take Christmas treats to my other media friends and I don’t know how I did it but I got there without any of the stuff getting crushed or destroyed on the train. miracles do exist.

Next to come- Curry Nite.

And the BAFTA goes to…. oh, I get so nervous at these things

8 Apr

Hi Fellow Mediadreamz readers

I have had the best weekend of my life to date, so far, and of course the title of my latest posting speaks volumes so loud I think life on another planet would hear it. Saturday marked the day where the cast and crew of ‘Jobseekers’ took a trip to the capital, to a really cool place, address 195 Piccadilly Circus. A group of us; Lee Dilley, Hayley Dilley, Paul Farrell, Sophie Elizabeth Black, Ciall Kennett, Tina Harris, Jason Parrish, Jade Hunter and a few other people got in a minibus and headed to the venue. And from the pictures at the beginning you can see what happened, and our pit stop and the really cool picture I took of Sophie’s Krespy Kreme doughnut.

on the road

 

on the minibus

 

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The Burger King Stop

 

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Whilst traveling down we all played a game similar to catchphrase say what you see and at times it was really hard, but it got us all laughing and in the mood for the event. Sooner than expected we were passing Brent Cross and heading round roundabouts and down routes that looked very familiar; we even headed down a really swanky street that got us all laughing and joking to the point where we were saying ‘this street is so posh, it has its own tress’, and from there we were finding new features to add to the sentence. And of course, it would not be London without going past London Zoo and down a few of the famous streets (ironically I  said I wonder whether we would be going down or past Savile Row, and of course we did and we saw a lot of people in London wearing really cool hats some of us counted 6 people).

 

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We got out and eventually we were outside the BAFTA House, and it surprised me a little, in that it reminded me of the Tardis; small on the outside and enormous inside. Whilst we waited outside other cast and crew for Jobseekers arrived, as did some of the cast and crew for the other production that was being showcased called ‘The Wolds’. The doors opened and once inside we took pictures of the BAFTA  head mounted on the walls, and then entered the theatre where the screening was to take place. I notice in the theatre that on some of the backs of the chairs are bestowed to famous actors and well known individuals/ companies. ‘Jobseekers’ was shown first, after Lee did a great introduction before it was shown on the great big screen, and it got all the laughs in all the right places and there was a lot of laughing from ‘The Wolds’  cast and crew. Before ‘The Wolds’ was shown Gary, Sean and another individual gave a few words about the programme and how it was made, the ideas and the cast too. The way I interpreted the layout was a cross between Benny Hill and Little Britain, one sketch made me laugh; a woman goes to knock on someones front door and it is answered by a goth with a tropical snake around the person neck, making the woman who had knocked on the door scream and pass out.

 

BAFTA House

 

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Famous plaques P1030863 P1030864 P1030865 P1030866

 

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The Wolds Introduction

After the screening, we all wondered round drinking and networking with people, one of the guys who helped out on ‘The Wolds’ production, mention that he has appeared in ‘The Mummy’ and various other films like ‘Tomorrow Never Dies’. I gave him one of my business cards and made it my mission on Sunday to find him and add him as a contact (I later learned that he knows a good friend of mine Terry B). Before leaving there was an queue so long it could have been to Congo line, people waiting to have their picture taken against the enormous BAFTA statues and here is the fun that we all had, and soon it was time to leave as BAFTA was closing up, so we headed up to Hanover Street to one of the pubs where the majority of the party had a drink and chilled out. One thing I remember seeing was a Blush bus for hen parties or any party people would want to host, that along with a limo and hummer, never dull in London. We left at 10pm, stopped to stretch out legs at about 11.30am and made it back to Derby at 1am, I was gonna take a selfie of me being exhausted, but had not energy. All I could do in the build up to going to the capital was to get my Facebook friends and followers to see if they could guess as to where I and the rest of the group were going.

 

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The big BAFTA  P1030883

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It was a brilliant night and although I only got 4 hours sleep it was so worth it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Going home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My selfie

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Premiere at the QUAD

17 Dec

Hi Mediadreamzers

It has been a week since I posted and these days I blink and the time goes within that action. Usually my Sundays are plain and quiet, however, Sunday 8th December was certainly an interesting one.

If you scroll back through the archived posts for this Summer I worked on a pilot episode called ‘Jobseekers’ that was being produced by a company called YSP Media and I spent a week helping them film in Derby and all around (thought it feels like that it was yesterday that we were filming the first episode). Well, last night was the premiere of the episode in Derby, at the QUAD, and I must say it was nice to go back to the city. I arrived and was directed up to the Box where the YSP crew were. It was great catching up with Belinda Basson, the producer of the episode who gave me the list of attendees, whilst I saw other members of the crew. During the run round at QUAD, Chris Bevan the great director of the episode was running round making sure all went smoothly and it did. I’m guessing it felt surreal for everyone as it felt that we worked on the project yesterday and yet we were here. Once at the table set up for ‘Jobseekers’, it was a case of helping meet and greet guests, VIPs, sponsors and the cast who had featured in the episode. Once the bulk of guests had arrived, it was a case of travelling to the second floor and walking one the red carpet. I have never walked on a red carpet before, so I savored every moment of it too! (it felt like across between a night at the BAFTA and the Oscars).

I admit it was the first time I have been in the QUAD Cinema of all the time I was at University, well there is a first for everything. Before the screening there was an introduction by Chris who introduced Lee Dilley the writer of the ‘Jobseekers’ episode, and then the episode commenced. It was great watching the final piece on the big screen and seeing how it looked, we all laughed at the right moments and when it finished the screen room was engulfed in non-stop applause. During the rolling of the credits I saw some additional footage and smiled when I saw my name on the runners page, the episode was an ultimate highlight when there was a cameo appearance of Lee, as a tailor. There was a Q & A afterwards where a selection of the cast answered questions, some of which got a few laughs and cheers from.

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Before networking and catching up with a few people everyone was given the chance to have their pictures taken with the cast and crew, in the green room (the ironic thing about the room was that it was Yellow). Hopefully, the planned 5 episodes will be made in the New Year and we can all come back together to make a great series and see if BBC, ITV or C4 are tempted by the series as it is different and local.

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YSP Media are great to work with and if I was offered the chance to do it all again, too right I would do it.

I need a Job, Job, Job is what I need

22 Jul

Well not me personally as I work part time and work freelance. This is in reference to my latest media opportunity that I have been working; a sitcom in the Midlands. This was with a company called YSP Media, and although the opportunity was for a week I was only able to do three days, which was sad but I loved very minute, or rather day of it. This was last week just gone, time does go by fast when you enjoy something so great.

Of course my role was that of a production runner, and I was one of 4-5 and then that changed (which I will mention later). The first day was heading to one of the locations and meeting the YSP Media in the car park. After the meet and greet it was a case of helping unload the vans, set up tea, coffee and a food station ready for the crew and extras arriving. I met the A.Ds (Melissa, Joshua and Alec) who made me feel like a member of the team, the producer Belinda who throughout my three days praised me for everything I was doing and using my initiative and being attentive. Later I met the camera crew and one of the guys wore different T-Shirts, so I nick-named him with whatever logo was on them (Batman, Danger mouse etc) Phil the DOP, who I called Dr Phil and Chris the Director who was a great guy to work with and for.

Whilst the crew focused on getting the necessary shots, I and the other runners I was supervising focused on looking after the extras and any other activities that needed our attention. First day came and went in the blink of an eye and this always makes me sad. During the afternoon when filming continued I found out that Belinda and I share a mutual friend (I know title of a Dicken’s novel) Terry. I also learned one of the crew members had worked on some really cool films Fast and Furious films.

Second day was on an industrial site and as soon as I got out of the car (and was handed a florescent vest) Belinda praised me again for my work yesterday, and I was surprised to learn that I was promoted to role of production assistant (second to Emma who was the main production assistant), and it was doing the same things as yesterday except keeping the extras and crew topped up with suncream as I was the only one who had a bottle factor 30 Max, and making make shift paper fans for those roasting outside. I even offered one of the guys working on the site who was started to get sunburned some sun cream and he accepted (he even told Belinda and Chris, both of whom praised me to the guy in question). We then moved to the next location and spent part of the evening filming on a street, and as you can imagine that is not easy, especially when traffic is constantly coming towards you form both angles. So some of the runners stood at either ends of street to forewarn of cars, bikes and people approaching, me being one of them as I was wearing the jacket. One thing many of us couldn’t escape was the sun and intense heat and even after being in the sun for hours and hours I didn’t even brown.

My third and final day was in a wine bar, bet most people would be thrilled to be filming in a place like that. Before coming to the location, I had to pick up the costume supervisor and one of the runners before parking up. Initially, I was advised to park in a place that was a 15 minute walk away, then an idea came to me; to ask to park at my old university digs as that would mean I would only be 5-8 minute walk away from location, and helped if I needed to drive off to fetch or take someone somewhere. I was immensely grateful to the site staff for allowing me to park on site whilst filming for that day. This decision was praised by Belinda and Josh for my thinking ahead.

I received an enormous surprise when I opened the door to the bar everyone started shouting my name and started saying that they really missed me on Wednesday as I had to work an afternoon evening shift. Even one of the cast members Ed was thrilled to see me, all I can say is that I was glad to be back on set. I resumed work as usual, met a new runner called Beth (who I later learned worked on Everything or Nothing James bond Documentary, which was AWESOME). I also sourced out props, went to collect refreshments, and just being on hand as usual. The afternoon soon arrived and I got the chance to chat to Sammy, one of the other runners and Alec the 3rd AD about films, experiences and topics of general interest. Soon some of the runners were told they could go home, and I stayed on stand-by with some of the other crew members whist the main team filmed a scene on a street. Eventually, Josh came back to the bar and said that I could go home as the filming on the street was nearly done, and I was sad to go as I had a really great time with YSP Media and I appreciated them making me feel like part of the team.

Overall, it was an amazing experience I wish it could last forever, I am certainly gonna stay in contact with YSP Media about future work as they said I did a great job, to the point where after a day I was promoted. I hope to work with YSP Media in the foreseeable future as they are not many media production companies in the Midlands and that most of them are London or Manchester based, so it is an advantage.

I have more media opportunities to add to the blog, in the weeks to so many months one of which will be working on a film in October which was confirmed last night (Tuesday 16th July).

I was surprised to find a message on my phone the next day from Belinda saying thank you, I just have to find a way to save or print the text message off my phone.

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