Post

Post-production! It's happening! 

It's exciting and terrifying all at once, as this whole journey of making our first feature has been. Film students joke that post-production is "where all student films go to die." 

It's true that a lot of films, even shorts, don't make it past the editing room. Post-production is an uphill journey, and a lonely one. Our crew of 40+ people has now shrunk to a small but stable 4 key players and various other post-production pros. Here's where the ones who fought to get this started, fight to finish. The endurance marathon, not the short sprints. 

However, it's so great to be able to sift through all the footage and reminisce on all the good times. That keeps us going. We also keep each other going, despite being tugged in different directions now that Josh and Brian and Annaliese and I have graduated college as of two months ago! 

We're fighting to get this finished product out to you guys by Fall/Winter 2015. It's coming together. We have a few rough cuts, we're working on an original score with our way talented composer, and then it's off to VFX and Sound and all that other fun stuff before Aventura hits the screen! 

The other heads of Aventura and I would greatly appreciate your prayers and encouragement during this time. Send us a message, follow us on the social media, check up on us to make sure we're sleeping and eating like normal people.............you know that film life. 



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Post-Production Update

An update from the land of Post-Production:

Since wrapping principal photography in January, Aventura has continued it's steady trek towards becoming a full-grown, finished film. We have been spending our time editing, filming additional inserts, and fundraising. While post-production is less fun than being on set every day with your crew of friends, there is no shortage of straight-up blessings and life-lessons in this chapter of the filmmaking journey.

 Thanks to the dedicated editors involved, we've reached a full 100min rough cut of the film. This was no easy task to navigate hours and hours of footage and audio. Many thanks to our Sound Recorder (Jon Crowe) for well-labeled sound takes and our 2nd ACs (Griffin & Vanessa) for wonderfully marked footage to help keep things organized. An additional shoutout is due to our Script Supervisor, Jeffrey Prosser, for taking copious notes during filming that have informed our footage logs in post. Our post-production supervisor, Brian Harmon suggested we work with teams of co-editors to sync the footage and create a rough assembly for each scene that could then be passed off to our main editor to tighten up and ensure a cohesive editing style. I am so grateful to our editors (Philip, Hannah, Kim, Betsy, & Ryan) and our assistant editors (Vanessa, Ryan & Thomas) for busting out scenes and using their creative cutting skills to make sense of all of we shot. A common expression used in film production when the footage may be missing the mark of perfection is: "we'll fix it in post!"  Well, these heroes are the ones who work the magic to make these fixes. I am encouraged to say it is coming together nicely!  

MARCH: Re-shoots. Re-shoots are a normal part of any film production. Sometimes called "additional photography," this is the chance to film any shots we may have missed or any shots we realize can help better tell the story. Our shotlist was informed by the editing room and the scenes that we realized needed some inserts to help them make complete sense. 

APRIL: Green Screen Plates. During pre-production, we were looking for the most time/cost-effective way to shoot sequences that have conversations taking place in a moving vehicle. (This is a road trip movie, afterall!) After a handful of tests, we discovered that green screen would be the best way to go. We would film the scenes with the van and the cast during the month of January and we would film the "plates" (the footage that would replace the green backgrounds) in the months following wrap.  

MAY: Fundraising. Since our last update, we have sponsored two fundraisers to raise money to afford our post-production expenses (purchasing a $2,000 hard drive, sound mixing, composing an original score for the film, visual effects, color correction, and promotion and marketing for a prosperous film festival run). This heavy to-do list ensures an industry-standard product and puts our fundraising goals at $30,000. The following fundraisers have allowed us to start eating away at this sum! 

The first fundraiser was our Aventura Finishing Dinner. What a fun night! It was so encouraging to feel the support of those who have been following Aventura since pre-production and return with an update and stories from set about how God has thoroughly blessed this project. We would like to extend muchas gracias to our entertainment for the evening: Harry Scannell & Josh Nelson for their melodies, Corrin Zug for her heavenly harp, and BJ & the Rich Kids Comedy Club for bringing down the house! And it wouldn't be a dinner without some authentic Cuban cuisine: Thank you Yoly & Esther for the delicious eats and Stephanie Crowe from Bake Your Cakes for the surprise cinematic dessert! After premiering a sneak-peek at our teaser trailer and a behind the scenes featurette, the evening brought in $2,000 towards our finishing fund! 

Our second fundraiser was a stuff-collecting fundraiser! The Vietnam Veterans of America offer an opportunity for miscellaneous things to be collected and donated for them to re-sell and distribute. They offer $1000 per truck. Everyone came together and brought different spring cleaning leftovers and we were able to fill one and a half trucks!

May also garnered some academic celebration when our producer team graduated from Biola University. Con-grad-ulations Hannah, Josh, & Brian!

As we press on this summer, we are prioritizing edit-tightening and hope to have a test screener to help inform the final cut later this month. Our goal is to have the manpower and resources necessary to finish and submit the film to festivals by this Fall 2015 but we will seek out what God has planned. We are continuing to fundraise and seek out investors and will be putting the first of this amount to hard drives and composing the original score. 

If you have some enthusiasm towards this adventurous project and some spare change you'd like to spur us on with, please visit our donate page and make a contribution! It does not go unnoticed or unthanked. Additionally, keep sharing the love and spreading the word on our facebook page and instagram or twitter (@aventurathefilm). Thank you for cheering us on and for reading our lil' update.

WE CAN'T WAIT TO SEE THIS MOVIE AND WE HOPE YOU CAN'T EITHER!



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Day 10-11: Ralph B. Clark Park

We never got the chance to meet this Ralph B. Clark fella but we do know that he puts on one heck of a park! The Aventura team was privileged to knock out the Bounty Hunter blogs and Day Worker Camp scenes here even when obstacles headed their direction.

At this point of production you find yourself in an odd rhythm of: wake up, go to set, MOVIE, eat, sleep, repeat. Everyone's jokes seem a whole lot funnier and you face certain predicaments with a seasoned, stone-faced calmness. Every new issue is: "that's not too bad. It'll all turn out okay."  We found ourselves frequently quoting this comic-al dog: 

Everything is fine.

Everything is fine.

We affectionately coined the phrase: "Day 11, never forget" due to the amusing amount of obstacles that headed our way that day. We had a late start to the day because we were locked out of the grip truck, Margaret the van was having difficulty rolling into position and the keys were MIA, we had a special guest coming to set at a TBD time, and time was quickly getting the best of us! It was an amazing feeling to reach the end of the day with all scenes shot and all bodies intact.

We owe so much to our roll-with-the-punches 1st AD team who were constantly on their toes, working hard to make the schedule work in our favor. (Thanks Louis, Rachel, Kelly, Jade, & Kaylor!) Being an AD is tough business & when you're making a movie about making a movie, that means double trouble? 

The honest fact of the matter is that each day was covered in so much prayer that it was the grace of God choosing to match our hard work with miracles every day on set. We are so thankful and give Him all the credit for getting us through production and the learning experiences we received along the way. 

It wasn't uncommon for the actors to get a grin out of whoever had eyes on the monitor.

It wasn't uncommon for the actors to get a grin out of whoever had eyes on the monitor.


One of the highlights from our park visit (in addition to our Bounty Hunter's hilarious improv) was when we were short extras and asked some of the park's gardeners if they'd be willing to participate in one of the scenes. They joined us by acting as hispanic day workers auditioning to be in Finn's film. Essentially, they were auditioning for an audition scene... acting like they have never read the lines before where in actuality.. they'd never read the lines before. It was a fun moment and they were troopers. Another meta-movie-moment for the Aventura books! 



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Day 9: Biola

Back at Biola,

we had a big day,

'cause lots of small scenes

were to take place that day.

 

We started by shooting 

sweet Dawson in the gut,

(Don't worry, the blood's fake),

the director called cut.

Next the crew went to film,

a Larry Johnson blog,

they used an edit bay,

one that film students hog.

They stopped at the bathroom,

but not for a break,

sweet Lucy had a scene

that she needed to make.

But that wasn't all,

there was more to film.

So the cast & the crew

pressed on - on a whim.

 

They pressed on to Eagles,

where Art renovated,

the counter to be a space

where sandwiches are made in!

 

For the camera's next spot,

the gang hit the courts.

and filmed themselves a flashback

of kids in gym shorts.

If you're still confused

with what these scenes were all about,

my advice would be to spectate the film

if you want to find out.



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Day 8: Ozzie's Diner

LoganAlesso02.jpg

The German word “sehnsucht” is sometimes translated as meaning “a nostalgia for something never experienced.” It’s this sensation that awakes in Ozzies Diner. If you visit, you’ll remember the ‘50s even if you weren’t there. We were honored to have the chance to capture the charisma of Ozzie's in our film!

True to our production's theme of living-out-the-script-just-like-the-characters-do, the crew commenced filming by enjoying a classic American brunch. The diner's owner, Jim, is very proud of his establishment and he boasts highly of each of the menu items. During one of our scouting visits, he proudly recalled the time that Justin Bieber & Selena Gomez came to enjoy a burger one Sunday afternoon. 

Right. Now, Revenge of Kin is a
medieval western, the first of its kind. It’s a story all about three brothers who have been exiled from their kingdom by the dreaded Duke who wants to marry their sister, Camilla, against her will. It is up to them to face their differences and reach the kingdom to gain their sister’s freedom back by winning the yearly darts tournament in disguise. It’s a story of fears, fights, loyalty, and brotherhood.
— Finn Clemens

It was a fun time filming the scene where Finn first briefs his actors on the plot of his script (Revenge of Kin). When he leads them in an acting exercise that causes a ruckus in the diner, we quickly catch wind of Finn's madcap schemes and the language barriers ahead. Lazaro's line: "Do we have any Tapatio, or no?!" quickly surfaced as a crew favorite. All six actors contributed to a really dynamic breakfast. 



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Days 6-7: La Mirada

Days 6-7 of production brought us back to our stomping grounds in lovely La Mirada. Our first stop was the work house where Finn and the gang participate in some manual labor to pay for an unplanned equipment debacle. 

Annaliese & the cast get down and dirty for the scene. 

Annaliese & the cast get down and dirty for the scene. 

We were so fortunate to have access to our comrade's estate, conveniently under construction! The cast and crew recreated a manual labor scenario with ease. Shout out to our make-up artist for giving the cast a dirty appearance (and to the cast for contributing with real dirt and sweat.) After laying some brick and a couple of wheelbarrow rides later, we had our shots and headed down the street to Finn's house.


Once at Finn's house, we set out to film the opening scenes of the film where Finn decides that he must solicit the help of his friends to drop everything and film his script (Revenge of Kin) en route to Seattle where his director idol/inspiration (Eliot Langhorne) awaits. 

Art department did a groundbreaking job in renovating the house of a few college girls into a budding filmmaker's bachelor pad. Huge accolades to Megan Mead and her team for bringing Finn & Ben's environments to life and really participating in telling each character's story. Annaliese loved the details put into each knick knack or hot sauce packet or scrawled note that were informed by the tone of the script and the actors interacted well in spaces clearly designed for them. 

Finn's half of the garage-bedroom starkly contrasts Ben's OCD living quadrant. 

Finn's half of the garage-bedroom starkly contrasts Ben's OCD living quadrant. 

During our time at Finn's house, one of our uninformed crew members accidentally participated in a rain dance before arriving to set and singlehandedly brought some moist downpour to our production. We needed to re-work a scene that had been slotted as an exterior and G&E had to ensure our daylight remained constant despite the shifting clouds. They succeeded on both counts! 



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Mi manchi

In case you haven't heard, I'm in Rome during a good chunk of Aventura's principal photography. "Student producer"? Here's where the "student" overrides the other half, unfortunately. It's a two-week trip to cover four units of the honors program I need to graduate this spring. 

When you're a student producer, you're essentially the mom of the film. It's very hands-on. Not being there feels like...well, I feel like I'm a babysitter that just walked out on the kid she's supposed to be supervising.

However, like most parents, I also feel an indescribable amount of pride. Shoot, that film took off. I was there in the beginning to make sure all systems were a go, and now look at Aventura! The best part about film is that its basic tenet is collaboration. Its success isn't tied to any one person; it's a group of dedicated crew members that believe in a vision and are willing to work hard to make it a reality. Aventura is a reality now; something we've been praying about and working ourselves to the bone for these past few months.

All of the aventureros are giving a a lot more than was asked of them, and it overwhelms me by the selfless examples others are setting. That's what kills me the most about being in the other hemisphere right now. More than the memories and the crazy bonding experiences - I want to be there to pull my weight in the actual principal photography. I care so much about the people I've been working with for the last half-year or so on this production. We've all given so much blood to Aventura, but in a weird sense it's also reciprocally life-giving. That's why I felt so blank on that 10+ hour Air France flight. I love where I'm going, but the leaving part sucks. It canceled out.

I don't know why I ever thought it would be simple to transition out. From the very first pre-pro meeting when we decided Aventura would be a feature film, we were planning around my overseas absence. "Oh yeah," we joked, "We'll Facetime Hannah on someone's iPhone, gaff-taped to a C-stand with a PA bearing it around."

In everything I thank God for the Aventureros. They've been encouraging me in my motto for this season of life: "faithful and present." I'm still working on living in this moment, here in Rome, without trying to astrally-project part of myself to LA with all my wistfulness. I guess I count it as a blessing, in a weird way, that my team is made up of the type of people to make it a real battle.

 



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Days 3-5: Visalia

Days 3-5 of principle production have been taking place in the beautiful Visalia! We are so thankful and blessed by the wonderfully supportive community here! We've been saving on lodging by having our crew stay in the homes of several generous supporters. To all who have opened their homes to Aventura, THANK YOU!!!

We have been filming at the beautiful Fox Theater. This is the location we're using for the Northern Film Festival, which is where Finn's idol director Elliot Langhorne will be. 

Our fearless leader and director, Annaliese Franklin, was interviewed by the area's local ABC news affiliate:

Later, we filmed at a local church and at a gorgeous park. The park was our first instance of filming "a scene within a scene" where Annaliese (real director) directs Gage (playing the director in the movie) and it was a ton of fun. 

We were so fortunate to have a huge handful of Visalia locals come out as extras and they really put their best work into each scene. This was one of Annaliese's favorite scenes to film because of the meta-ness of it all. There was a point where the Thomas (our kick-butt BTS videographer) was filming us at work. I guess you could say he was making a movie about us making a movie about people making a movie. 


Check out this short montage of the some of the footage we got in Visalia:

We're so grateful for the warm welcome and for all of the tremendous help we received from all of the background actors who came out and spent their days working with us!



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Days 1-2: Biola University (Green screen)

Just finished our first days two days of production, which relied heavily on green screen. In order to save money on lodging, transportation, camera car mounts, and more, our time is utilizing visual effects for the majority of the scenes in Aventura that involve driving. Director of Photography Chaz Olivier took advantage of the RED Dragon by filming in 6.5k with a low compression. Our production VFX supervisor has said he's impressed and can't wait to key the footage. 

In Aventura, independent filmmaker Finn (Gage Gallion) learns that his favorite film director will be at a film festival that will take place in six days in Seattle. He grabs his two friends, Ben (Jon Brunson), and Lucy (Madeleine Heil) and hires hispanic day laborers Lazaro (Hans Yunda), Santiago (Jaime Irrizary), and Alex (Juan Magana) and begin filming on the road. 

Here are a few photos from our set for the green screen road trip:

Here's a short montage that our wonderful Assistant Editor, Betsy Johnson, put together from footage from our first two days!

Keep checking in for more updates!



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One

That happened.

Getting through the first two of our of twenty-one days of principal photography is no small feat. That's like filming half of a normal senior thesis film. Just think - I've been communicating back and forth with all these crew members that I've met through a friend of a recommendation of a replacement of a friend through email/text/phone call/Skype when I've been line-producing my way through pre-production. Now I see faces on set, say with my real voice (not in Tahoma pt. 12) "Hey, I'm Hannah Chu, the producer. Nice to see you in person!" and extend my hand to meet these real flesh-and-blood crew members. It was hard for me not to poke them and keep muttering, "You're real."

And boy, was it real. Really fun. Everyone agrees the actors are perfect for their roles. The greenscreen footage turned out uhhhhmazing. There were some little tangles and bumps along the way, but we all expected it on Day One of our set. Still getting used to each other and feeling out the territory. Start work needing to be filled out, and Exhibit Gs, and SAG contracts. Names to be attached to faces. Still finding our good production set rhythm. Catering/crafty was on point (shoutout to Mrs. Franklin!). I was bummed I couldn't have been on set for a bigger percentage of the day; I think I split it 40/60 between all the green screen action and my office-cave. I did manage to get some BTS photos that I'll post later!

This weekend of filming reminded me that everyone comes in with their own expectations of their positions, other people, and the way production is run, but there's a harmonious point that is best for Aventura that we're all gradually adjusting to, kind of like heliotropism (where I got that analogy, I don't know; I've been awake for WAY too long. 91 unread emails hoorah). Pretty soon we'll be like clockwork. I'm constantly underestimating the great attitudes and gracious nature of our crew members, both in good and stressful situations. This may be a deferred-payment film, but our crew performed no less professionally than a major studio feature's would. 

It's so funny how the last thing the Aventureros and I shot together was Happy Birthday Dad! in one day and how we were dead tired after that (well, pre-pro crammed into three days will do that to you). That was the short sprint; this is the long marathon. It's a humbling and exciting thought.

I pass my fellow crew members on set, and when seeing their faces makes me relax more than stress out, I know this is going to be great.

I wish I could be in two places at once. 



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DAY UNO

Wowee. Day one. Here's a snippet:

http://instagram.com/p/xa1sczukNP/

In some ways it felt like there's no way it would ever arrive and in other ways I can't believe it came so quickly!

Some reflections from the inaugural filming day of AVENTURA:

  • I am astounded at the above-and-beyond-ness of these collaborators. They are selfless, they are witty, they are doing life WELL. I am inspired to do my best while subsequently accepted for my failures. I couldn't ask for a better team. This sort of group is something special. I am blessed.
  • It is SO WEIRD to see real, living people and real, tangible stuff take the shape of something you randomly wrote down on a word doc months back. To see hundreds of emails from people requesting "I would like to be an extra in Aventura" is almost too much to take in.
  • It takes so much planning to make a movie! There's a reason there's so many different people focusing on their specific tasks... there's no way I could do it all. I am delighted by the focus and energy the squad puts into their work. I hope they have a good time doing it and they take pride in the final product.

I had a lot more things I wanted to reflect on but I will save it for a different post because my brain is sleepy and my laptop says :

You need to plug the power adapter into your computer and into a power outlet. If you don't your computer will go to sleep in a few minutes to preserve its memory contents.

Looks like that's it for me. Orders are orders!

Dear Jesus, thank you for equipping us with the time, place, and opportunity to have this experience. Please help me to be a good steward of it. 

Yours truly,

Annaliese Franklin 



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Welcome!

Hello!

Thank you so much for looking into Aventura the Film! We're excited to present to you an inside look on our journey as we trek onward in our production. Please check back in to see exclusive updates regarding our production!

Josh Nelson
Creative Producer
13724 Saranac Dr. 
Whittier, CA 90605
Office 323.813.9874 l Cell 425.765.3305

 



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#blessed

If there was one hashtag that summed up this production, it would be #blessed. In the non-cliche way. So many curveballs and hurdles have been tossed our way, and constantly through it God has been gracious and faithful. 

One of the constant battles we Aventureros have been fighting (besides the one of students trying to raise a walloping $30k to fund our passion and our art) is balancing the line between knowing what God can do and what we ourselves can do within our means. Cold, hard facts vs. limitless possibilities. What are we comfortable filming? What's doable? What's feasible? What great film can we produce with the most amount of self-sufficiency and the least amount of stress and fear and risk? 

The mere idea of doing a student-run feature is crazy. Everyone knows the odds are against us. In terms of everything: finances, time, endurance, manpower. These last few months have spelled out in bruises exactly why students don't attempt features. But this isn't about living with the most amount of comfort; this is striving for excellence. This is pushing ourselves to the limit. This is collaboration. This is faith. This is saying Aventura isn't about us, or finances, or success.

This is risk: giving without knowing what - or if - you'll receive back. 

It's different from being naive, I think. You have to have a certain amount of childlike faith that God can work through college students to make a great feature film. There's a certain amount of reservation I harbor for the shadowy faces of cynics who are waiting for us to drop through the ice. However, everything we've done so far has been careful and methodical, drawing on research, advice, and resources of more experienced life veterans. We thrive on combined brainpower and a lot of prayer and deliberation, and God has continued to make Aventura possible.

Some productions are all thinking and no action and never get made. Some productions are no thinking and all action and have the same unfortunate end. I don't see Aventura landing in either of those categories. Aventura is - how do I describe it? a journey, an adventure, a work of art, a unit made up of different people sharing the same passion. I'm so #blessed to be a part of it. Wow. 

I got all Aventura-spective when all I really wanted to do was announce that we made our minimum budget, and then some. Thanks, everyone, for believing in us and the vision for this film. 

 

 



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Aventureros Assemble!

All cylinders, all crew members, all donations are being called in! We have less than two months before principal photography starts, and boy, are we feelin’ it.

We the Producers are simultaneously working on promos, casting, fundraising, re-crew-ting, reaching out to investors, imitating vacuum noises as we have arts-’n-crafts therapy meetings at 1am (i.e., pre-production for another promo video), thinking big thoughts about life, and trying to fit sleep somewhere in between. 

Oh yeah, and school. This week has been really tough. Last Sunday came and found me writing a feature script and a short film script at the same time (inadvisable) for class while trying to design a custom T-shirt for another class and dealing with Aventura business. This week has singlehandedly filled my quota of sunrises. 

I have a part-time job! I captain an intramural volleyball team! Am I off my rocker? Yeah, probably...but this week has also been a week of long talks with the Aventureros, recommitting to our goal and remembering all the blessings God has poured on this project already. 

Yeah, the Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Mix Vol. 0 and Vol. 1 help, but I honestly don’t know how I’d do it without my other Aventureros. We’re living the premise of the film: that the individuals and the moviemaking process - not just the success of the final product - are the most important. Our fan-freaking-tastic associate producers and production assistants have been blessing us to an exponential level by checking things off our to-do list. God is so good! 

We would still appreciate your donations and prayers for the upcoming thrill. Can’t do it without you! 

-HC

Did you know we are selling cool 5-panel caps for $15? Less cool fact, I took this cap-selfie in the San Gabriel Mtns while waiting for my turn to bungee jump off the Bridge to Nowhere. Coping mechs. 





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Locating Locations: Local & Otherwise

Aventura has about 40 different locations that Finn & friends visit over the course of their wacky road trip…Yikes! Finding the right location for each can involve a bunch of factors:

  • Is the look right?
  • Is it accessible and spacious enough for crew?
  • Is it safe to film here?
  • Can we get permits to film here?
  • Can we afford it?
  • Are there super trill, film-y vibes that produce an aura of aesthetic excellence??

All very important.

With the help of Thomas Borja & Julie Linstra (Locations Squad), Brian “Inspector Hugo” Harmon (Locations Manager extraordinaire), has taken the driver’s seat to work with me in ensuring that these questions are answered and our locations are located!

We went locations scouting this last weekend and begun this task.

We took lots of pictures and many helpful notes for our scouting log. It was a lot of fun!

Things learned:

  • Getting the mushy idea of what you picture in your brain for different scenes is harder to get out than you think.
  • Meeting and chatting with the owners of different locations will tempt you to re-write the script and make it about them. Great conversations with location owners is a joy of filmmaking I did not anticipate but I certainly appreciate!
  • Taking lots of pictures is a helpful reference point for any bit of scouting.
  • If we each made our own font this is what it would look like and what they’d be called:
Yes, these fonts are trendy and they are available for download for the low, low price of 30,000 dollars.

Yes, these fonts are trendy and they are available for download for the low, low price of 30,000 dollars.

We are spending half of our time during principal photography in the LA area and then transitioning to on-the-road. Connections in northern-California and Oregon are helping us find both the proper locations as well as lodging for cast/crew along the way. We’re taking a road trip to make a movie about a people taking a road trip to make a movie. #arewecoolyet

There is much to be done but we have much accomplished! This film allows us to take our camera everywhere from a middle school gym to a hippie sheep farm and from a desert campsite to a bustling theater. By utilizing our local resources and even manipulating a lot of Biola’s campus for small cutaways, we will be able to make the best use of production while still prioritizing the road trip aspect of production to ensure a proper final product. All I’ve got to say is, I have no idea how they made movies before Google Street View. Praise the Lord for Google Street View.

Til next time!

-Annaliese



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Production Meetings

Every Tuesday evening, since the beginning of the semester, the brains behind Aventura have gathered together for the productive-est production meetings you could imagine. Yes, there have been dance parties, and yes, we’ve prioritized a private fruit snack storage space, but these Tuesdays have been fundamentally characterized by the conversations necessary to bring a feature-film to life.

These times have been set aside to ask the “what’s next?”s and the “who’s job is that?”s. We have maintained excellent organization through the use of Google Drive and To-do list application, Wunderlist. 

We have also benefited from professional note-taker, Hannah Chu:

She keeps us on track and keeps a helpful paper trail of our production meeting progress. 

She keeps us on track and keeps a helpful paper trail of our production meeting progress. 

As well as our excellent AP, Anyssa Guiterrez (responsible for sending emails double-checking that everyone is making their deadlines and checking the wunderlist in a timely fashion.) 


It doesn't matter if it take 6 emails in a row, Anyssa will bug you to git er done. 

It doesn't matter if it take 6 emails in a row, Anyssa will bug you to git er done. 

Here’s an idea of the sorts of conversations we need production meetings for:

  • Roles and Tactics: Coming to agreement what departments oversee what aspects of pre-production.
  • Planning promotional videos & Social Media presence
  • Reviewing the Business Plan and Private Placement Memorandum
  • Contacting and securing crew members for production as well as PAs for pre-production
  • Making sure the script is airtight
  • Discussing Shooting Schedule and Budget
  • Planning the Fundraiser Dinner and other financially helpful events
  • Discussing Locations and the Roadtrip gameplan
  • Seeking out inexpensive solutions to production needs
  • & more!
It takes Google Calendars, Action lists, and Air Horn apps to make a movie. TRUST US. 

It takes Google Calendars, Action lists, and Air Horn apps to make a movie. TRUST US. 

Aventura is a movie that tells the need for people to be prioritized over the product. As Christians, we know that humans are God’s most cherished aspect of creation. For this reason, we know that we are called to be valuing the things that God values. We know that He has blessed us with this opportunity to create a fantastic film, and we also know that we can glorify him by taking care to value the people involved.

Thankful for every person on this team!

Annaliese



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Hey, Will You Sign my Cast[ing]?

Casting is an interesting paramount of production. You could have the swankiest camera gear and the prettiest locations but if the words that come out of your characters’ mouths are not believable, you’d be better off keeping the lens cap on. This mindset helped me to dive into the audition process with determination to find the right people for the job.

For the first tier of the Aventura casting process, we set out to find our six leads: Finn, Ben, Lucy, Lazaro, Santiago, and Alex. Casting director, Jeffrey Prosser and our casting team (Anyssa Guiterrez, Adam Lindemann, Samantha Thomas, and Amanda Darouie) were exponential in spearheading this first round of auditions.

We posted our listing on both Backstage (http://www.backstage.com/casting/aventura-48064/) and LACasting and advertised via Biola Caf slides and department email blasts. Applicants were directed to email aventuracasting@gmail.com with a video submission to be invited to auditions and considered for the role. We held two rounds of auditions, one weekend at CastINHollywood and the following weekend at Biola University. Here’s a pic of the castin’ squadron at CastINHollywood:

In order to prepare for the auditions, we had to do a lot of finagling to ensure we were properly scheduling timeslots that actors could commit to and also had to be very strong with our email organization to ensure that all the right information was sent to the right people.

It was a lot of fun meeting new people through the audition process. I learned a lot about being clear and succinct with what you share about the character for the sake of audition. I learned the difference between directing actors in an audition versus in a rehearsal. I learned a lot more about my characters, fine-tuning their descriptions as I saw the many different reads. And I learned to worry less about holding a perfect audition and focus, instead, on prioritizing what I need to see in order to make a perfect cast.

I will post the cast list in an upcoming blog. Rehearsin' soon!

-Annaliese 



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Biola Weekend

A couple weeks ago, the Aventura Production team was given the opportunity to take part in Biola’s Parent Weekend, a time when parents, grandparents and other miscellaneous relatives latch onto their respective Biolan and see the sights. Amongst a bunch of neat events are the Biola Film Showcase and Biola Bazaar. We turned up at both!

On Friday, producers Hannah & Josh, plus myself presented “Happy Birthday Dad?” the promo video we produced to build hype for Aventura. (Check it out if you haven’t already! )

We were encouraged that the video was well-received and joined host, Jade Herbert, for a Q & A panel after showing the film. We were able to talk about the rapid pre-production process that went into making “Happy Birthday Dad?” as well as introduce a little more about what Aventura, the feature-length film, would be about. Thank you Dr. Gerry Fisher for allowing us to take part in this event!

On Saturday, we set up a booth at the Biola Bazaar, a fair dedicated to crafts and other purchasable products. We set up shop with the agenda to tell people more about our upcoming film and how they could take part in making it a reality. Whether it was the bubble machine, nifty 5-panel Aventura hats, tattoos, or the 5d live streaming to video village, we had a fun time interacting with parents and students, inviting them to check out the website to learn more. Hats were sold and thoughtful donations were made by people eager to join in this adventure!

If you’d like to make a donation or purchase some of our hip headwear, please visit our online store on our website! http://www.aventurathefilm.com

All that jazz,

Annaliese



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We're making a movie. Wanna help?

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