I knew making Kaleidoscope Man would be a rollercoaster (I learnt that the hard way on my first movie, Written in Blood) but oh my, the emotional highs and lows of this sucker have been coming at me so quickly over the last few months – and there is a lot to tell you.
To start with, after nearly two years of intense CGI work, it is now all in the movie (so there are no gaps). I’m just going through the film polishing and tweaking the FX’s, making sure they are as good as we can get them and having the time to do this is making a massive difference.
Benjamin Symons has done an amazing job with the music score – He’s been working on it for a good six months and I knew he would do a good job. However, to say he has delivered beyond my expectations is an understatement. The music is stunning; exciting, iconic yet filled with pathos and empathy – it’s just magic! Here’s just a little taster:
The next job is to bring in some musicians to scale the music up and to give it a little more live feel.
Back in January we applied to this years Edinburgh Film Festival. My thoughts being that if we could get into this festival, it would mean we could apply to the BFI (British Film Institute) for enough money to pay for the final sound mix and colour grade. The BFI will only provide finishing funds to films if accepted into film festivals on their official list and the timing for Edinburgh was perfect (late June). On application, the film was still a bit rough, with FX shots still incomplete and only half of the music written. It wasn’t in the best shape to show them and unfortunately, the film wasn’t accepted into their festival.
This was a bit of a blow as I was hoping to premiere it there and was also pinning my hopes on the BFI finishing funds. Alas, never mind, we will find another way…
Back in late March we held our very first screening. This was at the Soho Screening Rooms in London and I invited some industry contacts, just to see what their reaction was and to get their initial feedback. Here's a little video I made of the event and my thoughts just after it:
It was a very nerve-racking experience and to be honest, not one that I enjoyed. All I could see were the mistakes and what we still needed to do to finish; the unfinished special effects, the lack of colour grade and a rough sound mix. However, as painful as it was, the feedback was gold. Things were spotted that I hadn’t even thought about and now in retrospect if I’d let them though it could have spoilt the film. We made a list of things to consider and got to work. Within days, the edit had improved immensely.
We re-wrote and re-shot part of the church scene that appears at the end of the movie. The script was changed to make the ending of the story more positive as it was a little too damning and didn’t really sit well with the story as it is now. Actor, Ian Brooker, came back in to do this (the original scene was shot nearly 5 years ago) and he gave a brilliant performance. Will anyone ever notice the 5 years it took him to walk up the aisle? The new shots worked a treat and I am just over the moon with how it makes you feel by the end of the movie, it makes the hairs stand up on the back of my neck.
So, with the picture now just about locked, we have been re-recording some of the actor’s dialogue. The reason we do this is because when we recorded it originally during the shoot, in some places we picked up a lot of background noise. EG, filming in Lanzarote by the sea, the heavy wind and waves made the dialogue almost inaudible. It’s all sorted now, and you can hear every syllable beautifully. This is thanks to the wonderful Alan Snelling who is overseeing the final sound mix. Watch this great video made during the ADR sessions:
Later this month I’m planning to show the movie to some film sales agents and to forge a plan of how we can get the film out to the big wide world. So things are getting very exciting.
So how much longer I hear you scream? Well, we only have the CGI to tweak, the sound to finish, the additional music to record, the picture to grade and then the final On-Line to create the elements we need to deliver the movie so we can get it distributed.
The good news is that this should be done and ready to go by the end of June – the bad news is, as we currently can’t apply to the BFI for help, we’re going to need to find another £25k to finish it. Still unsure just how we’re going to raise the money to do this, but I know we’ll find away.
Thanks for hanging on in there with me. Not long now….
Writer & Director - Kaleidoscope Man