The Return of The Bill
July 23rd, 2008

Posted by Graham

Ooo, new blog back-end. Shiny.

This video was shot over two days, as it was fairly special effect intensive for me. Thank god we shot all the green screen stuff on a Tuesday. It gave me a vastly longer amount of time to work on the ninja fight (not that I wasn’t still up at odd hours on Sunday night, but hey!)

We shot all of Paul’s green screen shots as the five ninjas he played first. I’d storyboarded the whole thing the night before, and good thing too, because that way I knew exactly what needed to be shot. However, by-and-large the actual choreography we all came up with at the time. Matt spent most of this time practicing his Naruto hand-signal malarkey.

It’s always difficult for me—who edits the videos and has a mental picture of them in my head—to articulate accurately where I need people to stand for a given shot. It’s even worse on the green screen because ordinarily, I’d move the camera to get a different angle, but that option isn’t present. So I have to explain things like, “Okay, now that way is forward, so you’re looking this way, even though it’s the same shot.” Very strange for the people on camera.

Nate showed up before dark (praise be to summer hours), and we shot all the exteriors. Now Nate… the guy goes from a running gag of never having actual dialogue to one of the longest soliloquies this side of Story Guy, and hadn’t read a word before showing up on set. Sure it took it some time, and some takes, but the dude nailed it. Props to Nate. I mean, Bill also had some tough lines, but he wrote them.

After we were done that, it was pretty dark. But we still needed to shoot Nate’s green screen shots, and Matt’s whole Naruto segment. After that was done, it was off to White Spot for some desert.

A couple days later we got together at Jer’s new pad, and shot the opening and closing scenes. Jer’s bed—as you can see from the photos—is on a loft, so Bill had a bit of a… standing issue. But we figured it out. That whole shoot was fairly straightforward. The only bit we didn’t shoot there was the shoot of Bill and Jer in the really “happy” picture of the two of them. We had meant to do it then, but didn’t have a picture. In fact, that insert was shot on Sunday, at my place, and that’s actually me in the red shirt. See? We don’t tell you everything in the LRRcast. Because I forget to.

The editing took me a great while, with the most complex shots having up to 7 layers, with colour correction and motion blurring as well. Keep in mind that Paul is playing all 4 ninjas in those first shots. One or two shots were split screen, but most were composited. Bill’s script called for a ninja fight “as complex as Graham is willing to do” so I brought it on myself. On Saturday I sent a rough-cut to Alex, who never ceases to impress when it comes to awesome audio. And he continued never ceasing. Further props to Alex.

But most props of all to Bill, who not only fought off the ninja scourge, but wrote his first video for the site, and is back in videos again. Hurray!


  1. Nate did do a good job on this shoot, and he also, like we posted in the discussion thread, really played it like Azrael from Dogma as that character.

    As for Matt’s Naruto making look fat, think of it this way, Naruto, in the screen shots I have seen is this skinny little twerp, so any horrible jabs at the character is a plus.

    And Jer’s new place looks sweet, though how big is the apartment as a whole. It looks like it doesn’t take up much space.

    Comment by Tim — July 23, 2008 @ 10:52 pm

  2. I like Paul’s Nike arm guards.

    Comment by General Bison — July 24, 2008 @ 12:19 pm

  3. no shots of the swords!

    Comment by corncob — July 25, 2008 @ 6:29 am

  4. lol Nike shin guards as Ninja gauntlets. Awesome! For the well endorsed Ninja every kid wants to look up to.

    Comment by Keith K — July 25, 2008 @ 10:58 am

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