Making of “Passage Through Fear”

May 30, 2016

In an unprecedented move to showcase the behind-the-scenes sound design process, I bring you the “Making of Passage Through Fear”. This documentary-style short video examines the creative and technical methodology for redesigning a clip from The Cell, a psychological horror film released in 2000 and directed by Tarsem Singh.

Over several days, I completed the filming for this feature. Using a Canon T3, a Sennheiser MKH-416, a Shure WL185, and an entry-level studio lighting kit, I endeavored to teach myself cinematography and film lighting. I learned about everything from f-stops to framing and everything in-between. Youtube proved to be an excellent research tool for these endeavors, as there is a rich community of film enthusiasts who love talking about art, technique, and gear. I was incredulous when I saw how much free information about filmmaking was available online.

In the process of creating the making-of video (facetiously referred to as the making-of the making-of), I transformed my living room into a bit of a film studio.

 

I also became a bit of a video editing expert and discovered just how powerful Apple iMovie can be when I A) learned how to use it correctly and B) forgave it for its sins against users who discover that what they really want is a more professional tool.

 

The absolute hardest part of of making this feature was acting for camera. Never in a million years would I have anticipated that it would be so difficult to speak eloquently – or speak at all for that matter – in front of a rolling camera. During the first hour of takes, I would freeze up entirely, break into cold sweats, run to the mirror to check my hair, and forget almost everything I needed to communicate. Suffice it to say, I now have a brand new respect for anyone who gets in front of a camera.

I’d like to give a special thanks to my acting coach Amanda Novoa for extracting a passable performance out of me. She routinely works in community theater, helping those who are not seasoned performers to discover their ability. I had no idea how helpful those skills would be in this endeavor.

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