Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Becoming a film star....

by Brittany Geragotelis

So, recently, in an attempt to connect in yet another way with my fans on wattpad, I decided it would be a good idea to shoot some videos for the web. I figured I'd use the videos to introduce myself and let people know a little bit about me: my likes, my writing process, my favorite authors, "Life's A Witch" etc. Because we all know that people connect with you more if you let them get to know you a little.

And as you know, my boyfriend went to Columbia film school and shoots and produces videos for his company, so of course when I decided I was going to do this, I went to him first. A little bit of begging and promises of back rubs later (kidding...he said yes right away. But I do think after all his hard work, he deserves a little TLC. Hear that, babe? A backrub's coming your way!) and he'd agreed to shoot me on his company's green screen and then edit the videos for me.

So, we agreed on a time for me to meet him at work and planned out all the videos and questions that I'd be answering in each. We talked a little bit about it beforehand, but decided that instead of having cue cards, I'd just wing it when we were there. I mean, how hard could it be? I've never had a problem talking...and I'm practically a pro at talking about myself. And talking about books and writing? Forget about it. I could prattle on for hours. So, I figured it would be easy!

The shoot day arrived and I was psyched for my film debut. I brought a few cute shirts with me and had done my makeup in bright colors that morning. As I waited for Matt to finish up what he was doing, I stole one of the Jolly Ranchers from his desk (he seriously has a vat of them) and thought about what I was going to say.

When everyone else had left his office, Matt ushered me into their soundproof studio and set me up on a stool in front of the green screen (which is really just a big green piece of paper; the idea is that later on, another image will replace the green in the background, so you can make it look like you're shooting anywhere. Cool, huh?). Once he'd set everything up and made sure the camera was poised on me, he turned on the filming lights (which nearly blinded me) and then basically said, "Go."

And I totally blanked.

Good thing we'd taken notes on what I'd wanted to say, and Matt prompted me from there on out. But still, it was a lot harder than I thought it would be! First off, the Jolly Rancher I'd eaten while I'd been waiting had stained my tongue, every time I talked, you could see little flashes of blue on my tongue. I had to rinse my mouth out with seltzer and brush my tongue, just to get it looking less like I'd just eaten a smurf.

Next, I kept making mistakes in what I was saying. And on stupid stuff. Like saying, "Hey guys!" Suddenly I was uber aware of what my arms were doing and how I was saying things, and I'd throw in words like "y'all" even though I'm not southern. It was really bizarre.

I also noticed how tired I looked. Even though my makeup looked great in person, I really needed a whole lot more for filming, because on screen you could barely tell I was wearing anything! And I don't mean to sound superficial, but if I'm putting this out for all to see, I don't want to look like a bloated zombie. Unless of course, that's what I was going for. Like if I was talking about zombies...then, it would at least make sense in the moment.

In the end, after taping an hour's worth of me messing up and attempting to talk to my fans, it would only boil down to about 15 minutes of useable stuff. And poor Matt had to go through all the footage and start cutting it this weekend....and being the genius he is, he managed to make even me look good!

I'll be posting the video on here, YouTube and on wattpad later this week, so be sure to check back! And please, no laughing.



Andi said...

You're awful funny, Brittany. Can't wait to check out the video.