Got home late and back up early for day two as you do in the world of film. I had all the equipment etc. loaded and drove over to sunny Holland Park in West London. The unit base was at my friend Katrina’s Allen’s house which was also one of the shooting locations. The cast and crew called for the early start were nicely on time, which was pleasing to see them all there when I got there. The only main hazard for the day was the parking.
I had to keep topping up the meter for the whole day. It was fortunate I was the only one driving that day so there was only one parking expense to pay, plus the hourly rate was surprisingly cheaper than I was expecting for Holland Park, so that was good.
I got the breakfast from the local popular cafe, Embassy Cafe, got settled in the living room with the cast and crew and got planning. Katrina was great for letting us film moguls crash her place for the day. My writing friend Fay was there as was my friend Michael who was taking stills for the morning of day two. There was lots of tricky props for this day; family photos of Joey and Cindy, a DVD cover, a bike. Katrina helped out with her printer and an electric bicycle which was a fascinating experience and my first. So there was lots of production things to do in between shooting.
We set out for the first shooting location, Maison Blanc in Holland Park. They welcomed us based on the permission I got with them and Lucy was in action. It was smooth, only took twenty minutes at the most. We then moved to the next location thirty seconds away, Bursting Buds which I also stricken up permission to shoot. We were there for a couple of hours. We got shots of our pretty Lucy slinking down the road and then a dialogue scene with Samuel. We got all the takes we needed from all the different angles of the two. Both Sam and Lucy were just as professional as ever and the takes ran smooth. The only hazard was a man drilling a front garden (as hazards like this typically happens on a shoot!) It was crippling Ziggy’s sound, so I had to ask the men if they could hold off whilst we shoot. They agreed which was marvelous. Deep down most people have a soft spot for their desirable artists and want to help them. After all I did them a favor by giving them an early break for twenty minutes (20 was agreed – we took about fifty.)
We had a break for lunch, an hour and then got prepared for the next scene. Katie and Faye turned up at their call time, Steve was meant too but informed me he’d be a couple of hours late. After all he was the antagonist of the film so if anyone was going to be late it was going to be him! While we waited for Steve, we utilized time well, we got Faye’s bike riding scene’s done. Faye is an angel on camera and this scene was to portray that effect. We used my car to do the tracking of her and it was cool. We did it numerous times, Faye was and looked great.
When Steve turned up we did the last scene of the film outside of location one. It was also the scene where the whole cast were together. Very busy scene, we had to get the shots of all the characters individually as well as the entire shots. Everyone knew what they were doing and we got through it in good pace. The only hazard was a school, we were shooting this when school had finished and there was a primary school just up the road. Ziggy’s sound was mutilated so we had to wait for the kids to clear, it took time but it was fun to hear them and their parents jolly saying things like “you’re going to be on camera etc.” We ended the scene with one of the most loveliest moments of the film in my opinion, the very last picture between Samuel and Faye, beautiful, but you can watch the film to see it.
Wrapped were Faye, Lucy and Steve, we had a break then Dani and I set up the bedroom for those scenes, it included blacking the windows out. We got the props set up which included the Amber Heard posters and shooting commenced. Not too much trouble these scenes, they were straight forward with basic visuals, action and dialogue between the two characters. We were there for an hour and a half tops. One bedroom scene was nice because it has a completely different mood and feel than all the other scenes in the film. The genre of Growing Pain is comedy but it’s always important to have these scenes to give the film personality, variation and to carry the roller coaster along.
Last scene of the shoot was in the bathroom. Props and lighting were set, we blacked out the windows again. The nice thing I found with this scene was the more you watched each take the more believable you saw the relationship between Sam and Katie, being mother and son in the film. The chemistry became more and more believable which means it was a success. I don’t know if it was because everyone was used to each other or because it was nearing the end of the shoot. It was one, if the only real time I saw ‘real’ chemistry between characters happening, it was a great way to end the shoot. Maybe that meant the project was meant for something good? Everyone was getting a bit tired, one or two mistakes in the last scene, but we held it together until the end.
We unpacked the location and I drove to Cherryduck’s studio straight away to drop off the lighting equipment. Thanks James I got home late (of course) but proud. Proud I got through the shoot, it was done, the film was in the can, achievement. Now it’s post and updates on the films future.