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Location Scout

January 9, 2009

Yesterday, I went downtown to take some location photos.  I was also planning on getting some B-roll of traffic for another project, but I somehow found the only two hour window when the 110 isn’t clogged.

Anywhoo.  When I was writing the script, I already had some locations in mind.  (I tend to write this way when I plan on making the film myself; it saves me work down the line.)  This scout was largely to make sure the locations existed in the real world the same way they did in my head.

I imagined the opening shot taking place across Figueroa, from the Westin Bonaventure.  I have a lot of history with this hotel.  Besides being where Kirrily and I had our honeymoon, many a student film has created faux-crane shots using the bridges that extend from the Bonaventure to the bank across the street.

So, I imagine the opening shot of the conspirators, Manfred and Mandelbaum, to look something like this:

Imagine this at night...

Imagine this at night...

Then, we pull back:

And also imagine a better cinematographer.

And also imagine a better cinematographer.

Pan left to see Shooter:

Imagine a steely eyed assassin standing there, instead of a pigeon.

Imagine a steely eyed assassin standing there, instead of a pigeon.

And, in the later part of the movie, we pan right:

Also much cooler at night.

Also much cooler at night.

In my wanderings, I also took note of a cool sculpture on the roof across the street:

I'm sure there's a better angle for all this...

I'm sure there's a better angle for all this...

It’s a cool-looking sculpture.  At night, the lights you can see in the lower-center of the frame illuminate it magnificently.  I thought it might be a fine place for the hostage scene at the beginning of the movie.

The thing is, it’s a very verticle sculpture, and I’m not sure there’s a way to shoot the actors in that space that doesn’t look, well, stupid.

My wife also pointed out that waving guns around downtown might not be the best idea.  It is several stories about street-level, so I wouldn’t anticipate a problem, but you never know.

There’s also this spot, which has the same logistical issues:

They shot part of Fight Club here.

They shot part of Fight Club here.

Meatloaf chased a dude on a bike here.

Meatloaf chased a dude on a bike between those sculptures.

So, cool as these places look, I’ll have to do more scouting.  Boy, it’d be great if I could pay someone to do all this for me.

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One comment

  1. I love that scene!



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