Sci-fi web series ‘Hunger Ford’ shot with C300
In July 2013, Wildseed Studios began shooting their first live action sci-fi web series with 19 year old Director Drew Casson. It started in Hungerford on a boiling hot day as they began by filming exteriors for the story. The equipment had been picked up two days prior to this, and the Canon C300 was rigged up and ready to go. The film features many special effects, stunts and even a postman being thrown through a table. The story follows a group of young adults as their town gets stranger by the minute. The team wanted a camera which would capture all the action, while remaining cinematic and being easy to operate when shooting this ‘vlog’-style piece.
The wide dynamic range and low noise of the C300 meant it was perfect for those dark and mysterious shots of characters entering an alien lair – capturing enough data to make the resulting footage fantastic to colour grade whilst not breaking the budget. The Canon 16-33mm and 24-70mm zoom lenses were the weapons of choice, both of which allowed Drew to decide on the best possible framing for the scenes, and quickly adjust while rolling.
When Directing (and starring!) in the action, Drew commented that “the C300 is great. I’ve been really impressed by the quality we’re getting out of it. We’ve got shots of people running through the street as an electrical storm hits and the camera has performed really well”. He continues “it is great to see every gritty detail in our zombies captured – it allows us to show off the great work of our makeup team.”
Mark Stopher, the Production Assistant, was also very impressed by the service VMI offered: “When picking up the equipment, the staff were very helpful and had all the time in the world to make sure we were happy. They were even kind enough to recommend some specialist camera harnesses for one particular shot we were planning! Their offices were heaven for any camera operator.”
The equipment was used for the entire nine day shoot across Hungerford, Goring and Bristol and the provided cases kept it all safe with the rest of the kit throughout filming. The team included local crew, and a cast of local actors, all of whom bonded immensely in creating the series. Fake blood was in abundance and unit base in Hungerford served as a sanctuary between takes. For the last two days of filming, the cast and crew travelled to The Bottle Yard in Bristol for some crowd scenes with plenty of willing zombie extras. The hard work and commitment shown by all involved helped everything to run smoothly as smoke grenades combined with a casted SWAT team in perfect harmony.
Creative Director of Wildseed, Jesse Cleverly said, “I met Barry from VMI in a cab on the way back to the airport in Cannes – I’ll bet poor Barry wishes he been travelling with someone else because after an hour of me ranting to him about our mission to empower young creators – and telling him that VMI should be a part of that, Barry was in too deep!
I took Drew into VMI – and Gerard Botha, VMI's Head of Cameras, showed us round the C300 in the most practical and accessible way imaginable – no snobbery or patronising attitudes at VMI! After 30 minutes or so - we were sold on a much better piece of kit than we had envisaged using - and to his huge credit Barry agreed to a deal that worked with our rather modest budget!
Now the film is shot, and looks fantastic – and all thanks to Barry and VMI putting their money where their mouth is when it comes to supporting emerging creators.
VMI helped to make the shoot straightforward and fun, and it seems that Wildseed Studios will be using their services again.
For more information about Wildseed Studios, visit http://wildseedstudios.com.
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