Update on Secondhand Hearts
By Director Austin Everett
So a couple months ago I announced that I would be directing my first full length film. Admittedly, I was a bit nervous to say it out in the open. It’s not even that I didn’t think it would it happen — I knew it would. But it’s a huge step in the direction I want to take, I didn’t want to jinx it.
But I’m happy to say, that we did it!!!! *cheers from the crowd*
We shot the first half, which is all we were planning on do for now, let me make sure that’s clear.
So again, let me clarify — we shot the first half this year and we’re going to shoot the second half next May, and we’re doing that for a couple of reasons.
The first reason is that the story actually takes place in two seasons — 6 months apart. The first part takes place around Thanksgiving and then we come back into the story in the spring. Shooting it now and then returning in 8 months means we get free exterior set dressing/production value, courtesy of Mother Nature, and it also allows our cast to change how they naturally might look in a little less than a year. I’m really hoping that Jericho puts on 20+ pounds. THAT WOULD BE AWESOME.
The next and most important reason is budget. We simply didn’t have the budget to do the whole film all at one go with the amount of cash we had on us. So it was either shoot the whole thing super, super, low budget, or we shoot the first half in hopes of securing the budget later after we’re able to show a trailer and basically the whole first half of the story. We opted for the latter.
But this is what we were able to do:
We shot for 4 days in Orem, Utah, with 30+ beautiful crew members and 10 cast members.
Next, a small band of us took off to Japan for a week where we shot in locations that just blew our heads off, metaphorically. In total, I think we spent less than $5000 to shoot there and the amount of production value it’s adding to our movie is ten times that.
Total pages shot: 56. That’s equal to about 50 minutes of the film in the can.
But again, that leaves us with about 40 more minutes to shoot in May. So until then, we’ll keep talking to more investors and we’ll be launching a Kickstarter where everyone will be able to pre-order the movie and get cool things like props from the movie, official t-shirts, the poster and more.
Also, I feel like I’ve already learned so much from shooting this first half that I’m planning on writing about the following things:
- Shooting in Japan, the pros, the cons, the advice if I were to do it again.
- The secret way I secured all of our AMAZING locations, basically for free.
- Our camera package and shooting 4K on a budget.
- Other tricks we’re using to shooting a feature on a ultra low budget.
- Lessons I learned from purely a director’s POV.
Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to hear about!
Thank you to everyone for all of your support and encouragement. I can’t tell you how much it means to me and the rest of the SHH cast and crew.