Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta crew. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta crew. Mostrar todas las entradas

viernes, 3 de febrero de 2017

Wild Space

   Above them, the various pieces that made up the space station had caught on fire and were falling at high speed to the ocean in front of the islands. It had been a miracle that the planet had a archipelago in the right place, or their pod would have landed in the middle of the water and they would now be dead. As the biggest pieces collided with the surface of the water, the five survivors of the station looked at the water in horror, as an enormous creature roared, visibly enrage by the fallen projectiles.

 There, above the ground and the sky, their life had been ideal but not perfect. They had everything they could ask for, such as running water, food, information, communications and so on. The program they were involved in was only about civilians in space, so none of them were actual astronauts or scientists. They were all normal people, in the sense that they only had the basic knowledge of how to survive in space. And now, survival skills were the most needed.

 The group started walking downhill, as their pod had crashed against the highest part of a mountain that seemed to be made of something sand-like. Shock wouldn’t have let them move but they noticed the ground shaking below them and the monster in the water became a second problem. In front of the team, Richard was leading them towards the beach, where he thought they could be safer. No one really said anything, they just followed and tried to hear everything around them.

 Richard had been a boy scout as a kid. He had camped in various national parks back home and he had enjoyed it thoroughly except for a traumatic experience that made him retire from the scouts. Their parents never demanded to know why and he concluded it was better like that. Now he was walking under a blazing sun, with four other people he barely knew, even after living together in a space station for a year. That, somehow, had not been enough time to get to know one another.

 When they arrive to the beach, the first to sit down was the only other man, a man called Sebastian. Despite the English sounding name, he was actually Swedish and spoke with a very thick accent. Sebastian was older than Richard and he had been a magazine editor back home. He had become a part of the team as they all had: paying a big sum and basically winning a lottery. He wanted to get out of the Earth fast, as his wife had died only a few years after getting married. He felt so heartbroken that he decided to leave on an impulse and now there he was.

 The three women were called Maria, Kim and Victoria. Maria had only win the lottery. She had won the only seat in the station that was up for grabs without the need to pay anything. She was a janitor back on Earth and had decided to join in order to get away from her family, who she secretly hated. Kim was a famous supermodel, tired of being in the spotlight and Victoria was an architect from Angola, named after the queen that had conquered the African continent.

 The three of them seemed tired but none sat down on the ground. They instead watched the ocean, looking for the creature. At some point, it had disappeared, along with the wreckage from the station. Richard was still trying to understand what had happened but it had all been so fast… They were all sleeping and the alarm started beeping: apparently the ship’s hyper drive had ignited by itself and they were now ramming against a planet. With only minutes to decide, they jumped on the pod and saved their lives.

 As they had no idea how that world worked, they agreed that the best thing was to walk along the edge of the ocean and look for something to eat. Then, they would try to find some sort of cave or safe place to rest. After those two things had been achieved, they could be thinking about the future, if that was a possibility. They walked in silence, watching the strange bushes growing by the beach, hearing the strange squishing sound coming from the greenish water of the ocean.

 Not of them wanted to talk too much. After all, there were originally six people in the space station. A man called Bruno had not come to the pod after hearing the alarm. They never knew what he was doing, if maybe he had been the one to make the hyper drive work. In any case, he was now dead, spread across the skies as the station fell to the ocean. He was a strange man, always hiding something from the rest of them. He seemed much more tormented than all of them put together.

 They stopped when they noticed a small stream coming from inside the island. The water was also green. Kim walked closer but Richard warned her that it might be poisonous or have chemical compounds too different for the human body to process them. But Kim didn’t want to drink the water but to observe it. It behave differently, not like a normal liquid but like some sort of creature. The woman got up fast, shaking. She then looked at the ocean and said what she was thinking aloud: what if the water in that planet was actually alive, moving slowly on its sides?

 As she said that, tentacles branched out of the ocean and launched themselves at the group. Richard and Kim ran first. Maria followed them closely, as did Victoria but Sebastian was way to slow and he got grabbed by the ankles. What happened next made Maria scream and Kim almost faint. Victoria vomited right there, just a few meters away from the water, as they saw the most disgusting spectacle that they had never seen. The universe was a place to be afraid of.

 The water, or whatever it was, had absorbed Sebastian’s body through those tentacles. It was like watching a kid drink out of those juices that come in a bag, only that this bag had been alive just moments prior. He didn’t even had the chance to scream or anything like that. The man just died, obviously, his empty body dumped carried by the tentacles towards the ocean. Apparently, the tentacles fed the creature that had been disturbed by the fallen debris. It appeared again, eating their companion.

 Victoria was trembling wildly and Kim had to be helped by Richard, as her legs didn’t properly work. It was Maria who, her face white of the horror, suggested they looked the opposite shore. They had to verify if water was like that all around. It could be the decisive point between remaining alive in that planet or dying without any possibility. So they walked, in silence, still shaking and wanting to scream. But hey feared potential creature in the bushes, so they kept to themselves.

 The opposite shore was only an hour away, cutting through the island. When they saw it from afar, they noticed right away it was a different kind of ocean. When they got closer, they realized it was normal water, the one they knew from back home. Deciding it couldn’t get more dangerous than a stomachache, they decided to drink some. It wasn’t salted, as ocean water on Earth, rather on the sweet side. They each drank a bit and then sat down on the beach, to rest their trembling bodies.

 It was Victoria who started crying first, then it was Maria and then everyone was crying. In a weird way, that united them more than anything before. They hadn’t really been friends or anything back in the station, just travelling mates,. Now, things had to be a little different.

 They were drying their tears with their hands when a loud noise was heard above them. They looked up in horror to discover an enormous ship just passing above them. It was obviously not man made. It had all sorts of inhuman features. And it hadn’t noticed them… yet.

viernes, 11 de septiembre de 2015

Sex sells

   Because it does, doesn’t it? When Michael had the idea to make his own website, every single person he knew thought he was going insane. But what they weren’t thinking about was the time he had wasted on so many other projects that had only failed one after the other. He had gone to law school but he had never been hired by a proper firm, only as an intern and they had told him, in very few words, that he should be as far from the word of law as he could. It was a bit brutal back then but he understood what they meant. In any case, he had tried to make anything and everything in order to be his own man and have a life of his own, to make his parents proud. Because what he wanted was to repay them for all their efforts to raise him.

 Michael opened a cupcake store, which had to close only a month after it opened because absolutely no one bought anything. He had learned how to bake for several months and it all when to the trashcan in a matter of days. Then, he decided to team up with a buddy from college and open a dog walking business. They did everything an owner could want like bathing them and walking them, doing exercises and so on but they failed miserably once his partner let one of the dogs escape and the owner sued him for it. Michael had also tried to make it in the call center world but they told him in the interview his voice was not the right one for the job and in a Burger King they told him he was tall enough, but they failed to tell him what his height had to do with anything.

 So many tries and failures had made him a little bit bitter and more of a loner that ever before. He had never been the kind to go out a lot or something like that. He would prefer to stay home and watch movies. So maybe that’s when the idea came to him. Like any man his age, he watched porn from time to time, when being specially aroused. He had never really paid any attention to the movie as such, only to the act they were performing. He must have been really bored that day because he remembered thinking it all look so fake, so prepared and too rushed for his taste. It was gay porn by the way, for reasons not worth explaining as they explain themselves.

 The thing was he watched the same clip, which was about fifteen minutes long, like ten times. He watched every single part with detail and then realized sex sells. It was that easy and he had never thought about it. But then he realized he hadn’t thought of it because of how people perceived pornography, no matter if it was between two men, two women or a straight couple. If you said that you worked in porn, must people would think you’re a pervert or that you just want to be having sex all day long and that’s not what it is and that was something Michael understood that night, when he decided to properly investigate.

 So, must of the films done in the country were low budget and that’s why their production was such garbage. He knew the video he saw must have been made with a handheld camera and some sort of small microphone and not much else. He investigated further and found out these productions companies, which normally only made very few clips a year, sold what they did to larger companies in the United States and there they were marketed online or, not very often, in sex shops all around that country. But that had to imply to movie was good because if it wasn’t people would make it here and just sell it here or upload it online or something. The thing with all of this was to win money and to make it a proper business, to make it a proper job with everything correctly labeled.

 The next thing for Michael was to find the money for it. He had some savings from his earlier jobs and knew he could convince some of his friends but before that he had to have an idea in order to sell it properly. He came up with a film called “The spy”. At first, it seemed like some ridiculous thing but then you realized it had everything a person would want in a movie: sex, drama and even a bit of romance and comedy. He wrote it with the help of a friend that went to film school. His name was George and he was the first person to tell him how insanely great his idea was. He promised to help Michael with cameras and lights and so on if the movie got made but, as a student, he had no money to share with him to do the movie.

 Michael decided to pitch it to every person he knew, no matter if the movie was gay porn or if he want it to do it in a way he had never seen porn being made. Most people just looked at him as if he had turned insane in mid sentence. Others were interested but only because it seemed like such a crazy idea. And the only people that were on board, two men and a girl from George’s film school, told Michael they could help with the production and give only a small amount of money. It was a beginning but they needed much more in order to make the movie as such. He tried to remove things from the script and George got the cheapest but best camera he could find at that price and they still weren’t close.

 Their next step was to go to the local production companies and offer them a place in the movie if they had money to invest. But all of them were very harsh; telling them you just couldn’t get in into an industry and try to change out of nowhere. They told them they had to have experience and a way of doing things that wasn’t too out there because in porn, differently than in movies, people just wanted the same thing that they had always seen and no one would invest in a movie that, in appearance, seemed to be more like an art film than a porno. Michael was disappointed but George told him most people in cinema were just like that, as they hated competition specially when the competition was good.

 Their last resource was to get financing from abroad. So Michael wrote hundreds of emails and sent them all the same day, hoping to be shooting the movie soon. In the mean time, they had created profiles for the characters and, to make things cheap, they had decided that everyone in the crew would appear on the movie but without getting paid, only their names on the credits. One month passed and it was a long wait. Michael was beginning to lose hope but George always tried to cheer him up, trying to make him focus in things about the movie they had not yet thought about like lighting, costumes, makeup and so on.

 Finally, when all hope had been lost, Michael received a letter, a proper physical letter, from one of the biggest production companies in the United States. They had agreed to finance the movie but only if it was done according to certain standards they had, mostly things they could agree on easily on a contract. The next month, it was all about flying to Los Angeles and signing the contract. There, an executive told Michael that his vision for pornography was very interesting and that, if the film was a success, they could be thinking about working with him again. They were so happy that day, that George and Michael had a nice dinner to celebrate and, at the end of it, they shared their first kiss ever. They realized right there; they had feelings for each other.

 But production started days after that so they put all their focus on the movie. They got some good looking but different guys to participate in the movie as actors and they shot it in the streets of their cities, except the sex scenes of course. For those, George’s friend Alexa had a thing for everything related to art direction. She transformed a room in an old house owned by Michael’s grandparents into a perfect replica of what Michael had imagined for the movie. It was supposed to be the place were the two lovers escaped to be together, away from all the looks. The scenes when they had sex were incredibly easy to film and they even got some money from a condom company because they would show a close up to one of the wrappers.

 Filming lasted for a whole month and, at the end, they had a great party to celebrate their success. They announced that a friend of George’s that had already graduated was going to make the editing of the film. He was very good and told George he wanted to be part of the film. The production company sent a guy to monitor their progress and everything went as planned. Another party was held when the movie was displayed as a “new feature” on the website of the production company. In only one week, a million people paid to see it. The movie was an absolute success all over the world, making the actors stars and the crew simply heroes.

 They would be hired again for more movies, one of them being a proper sequel to “The spy”. George and Michael began dating and eventually got engaged. They never moved to the United States, even at the insistence of their job. They knew what they did was special because it had another scent to it, if you will. Michael was proud of his achievement and shared it with everyone. Some people left his life but others were just proud of him too, even his parents who wouldn’t see the film but celebrated it all the same.

viernes, 13 de febrero de 2015

The last scene

-       Cut! That’s a wrap, people.

 Every single person on set relaxed their muscles. The shooting had been going on for three months, and they were simply exhausted. Besides, being in such a fantastic place was too good and perfect to be there only working. It was a large forest, almost like the ones in fairy tales, with perfect pine trees and rocks of all forms and shapes.

 The shooting had been going on among some of these trees, in an area where they grew a little bit more separated from each other than in the rest of the forest. The trailers and camp in general was located not very far, around a large lake that was almost perfectly round. The sound of birds and other animals came from the farthest places; it was as if you could hear forever.

 The lead actress, a beautiful young woman by the name of Samantha Hart, was the first one to return to her trailer. She was accompanied by the costumer designer, some makeup people and her personal assistant. She had to remove every single thing belonging to the movie in order to be able to rest in peace for the first time in several days. It wasn’t strange that all actors were wearing heavy makeup to conceal the traces of their lack of sleeping time.

 Otto Fröm was the name of the director, a big man, tall and fat with a beard that covered half his face. Although he was a very nice person as a friend and when the cameras were not working, he was ruthless when making a film. He had a vision for every single thing, for every single frame of the movie, and he wasn’t going to compromise that for anything in the world. He just wouldn’t.

 He left too for his trailer, to check the footage of the day with his two assistants and the director of the second unit that had arrived that very morning. He had been in charge of shooting some scenes very far, by the coast. They went into the trailer and kept working. For Fröm there was no resting or peace until he finished his movie. He wasn’t interested in what the production or distribution companies said. He always sent one of his assistants to speak on his behalf and his answer to everything was “When the movie’s done”.

 Samantha had already taken everything from her: the beautiful jewels, the amazing costume and even the tons of makeup that made her look beautiful. Not that she wasn’t beautiful on her own right but she was human and she had many flaws. As a matter of fact, she spent several minutes in front of the mirror, looking at herself. She particularly hated the freckles that seemed to occupy most of her face. She would have loved to remove them but that wasn’t possible so she had learned how to conceal them with makeup.

 When every single person had left her, she lay down for a while in her bed and stared at the ceiling of that tiny space. Another movie had passed by and now she was technically unemployed again. Well, only for a couple of weeks until she had to travel to Peru and begin the production of a new film, a historical depiction of the Inca Empire. She got up and looked herself in the mirror: she would have to dye her hair and let it grow longer. Maybe they would force her to use contact lenses because she had never heard of Incas having blue eyes.

 In the woods, however, people were still working. They were the gaffers and electricians that had to pick it all up, every cable, light and accessory used in the production of the film. Noah was one of them, a man aged thirty-five, very strong although not very tall. He had been working in the business for the last ten years and knew every trick and technique to help the director of photography to do his job.

 That man had already left following the director, who Noah thought was too obsessed with perfection. In his experience, he knew some things have better results if they just happen or if they are improvised. As he gathered several lights boxes, he realized this Fröm guy had not let any of the actors improvise the scenes. This was very particular as most of the action scenes Noah had been in, the actors had had the necessity to improvise because they felt fear of the situation, even if they knew it wasn’t actually threatening.

 In his trailer, Fröm consulted every single detail of the scenes done that very day. Although he had made the actors repeat the last scene at least ten times, and it was a very long scene, he felt the ones that had been done lacked something. He asked the director of photography but him, being a rather older gentleman, thought it was all perfect and that postproduction may help him have a more shocking scene.

 But Fröm, who was a purist, didn’t really like all the beautiful things promised by the visual effects people. If he could, he would avoid them at all costs but the production company had already paid them to be on the lookout once Fröm delivered his rushes to them. He asked his assistants if he could shoot the scene again but they told him that most of the materials used had already being removed from the forest and that it would be very costly to put them up again for one scene.

 The crew organized a small gathering that night, on the beach of the circular lake, in order to celebrate the end of the shooting. The director was absent and the lead actress appeared only very late at night, when most of the people had already gone to bed. They had no way of drinking alcohol so the party was all about eating the food they hadn’t eaten for the last few days, as well as several bottles of water and soft drinks. The producer that was present didn’t object and actually offered to put on some music from her trailer, were she had a computer with good speakers.

 Of course, the amount of noise that could be done was not very high. Amongst them was a man from the government that had to ensure the preservation of the site during the shooting. He agreed to the celebration but made them promise that the music won’t be very loud and that they would finish it all by midnight. That wasn’t an impediment to have fun for a few hours, eat a lot and celebrate the end of another day of work.

 Seeing she had arrived to late to the party, Samantha sat down with the makeup people and started chatting amicably with them. She felt closer to them than anyone else on set as she spent a lot of time in their quarters. Same with the costume designer and her assistants but that woman was always so busy that she didn’t seem to have fun doing her work nor realizing that she could relax once in a while.

 They spoke about their families and the beauty of the place. The lake looked now like a large tar pit, in the blackness of the night. Eventually they all went to their respective “dormitories” and had the best night of sleep for weeks.

The following day, a helicopter arrived to start transporting equipment back to the nearest city but the director surprised them by announcing that no one was leaving until they had done the last scene one more time. Every single person was annoyed and most workers refused, threatening to get their unions involved in the matter. But the man had received an authorization from the production company that made them stay another day.

 Setting up everything took four hours and the proper shooting of the last scene last almost that same amount of time. But this time, one the director had yelled “It’s a wrap now, for good”, they start dismantling everything so fast that in an hour every single prop and accessory was put away and on the helicopter.

 Samantha left with Fröm on the first helicopter and Noah had to wait almost until dusk to be able to leave. When in the air he looked one last time to the forest and the lake and smiled. It was always fun to enjoy work, even if he had no rest for months or his boss was a jerk. He loved it all.