This last weekend, I helped out as A.D. on “Enter Max Dagger”, the Tasty Dudes Productions’ film for the 48-hour film project. For those not in the know, the 48-hour film project “invites filmmakers from around the world to produce a complete short movie in just two days.” Much like Nanowrimo and Script Frenzy, the 48HFP pushes artists to create something in a short time that they may have never attempted to. To add another wrinkle, all the groups participating in a city are given a prop, character and line of dialog that must be used in their film, and each group is given a different genre. At 7 PM on Friday, we were given our challenge – write, film, edit and score a detective movie in 48 hours. The prop – a notebook. The line – “Things are never going to be the same.” The character – Melvin Lyons : furniture maker.
While the whole project was really Jon’s show (as editor, director and lead camera operator), I helped him and the other two members of the production team (Jake and Travis) hammer out the rough outline for a script on Friday night, and headed home around midnight. By the next morning, they had finished a 13-page script, and assembled a group of actors for all the roles. Luckily, I didn’t need to step on camera for the movie. With hardly any breaks, we shot from early Saturday until around 8:30 in the evening. While most of the shots were indoors, we did what we could outdoors. Although late evening light and a huge thunderstorm were not our friends, we got tapes and tapes of raw footage – raw footage that needed to be cut down to 7 minutes of story.
With my work mostly done after Saturday, I left scoring and editing to Jake and Jon. While they took it right down to the 7 o’clock deadline, I got a text a 6:50 that said GAME SET MATCH, confirmation that the final cut was “in the can.” “Enter Max Dagger” had gone from concept to finished film in 48 hours. The short is going to be screened, along with all the other project entries, at 9:30 at the CINEMAGIC in Westbrook, ME. It’s sure to be a fun event, with a huge number of creative people screening their entries. Tickets are available here. Of course, if you can’t make it to a detective spoof in southern Maine, the movie will be available on 48.tv after the event, and an extended cut will be up on YouTube.