How to Tackle Shooting Challenges in Streets: Cops, People, Locations, etc

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Things that seem deceiving are not always bad or things that seem so true are not always that way either. What we see is what we perceive it to be and sometimes we are cheated and made believe. Cheating in film making is an art to master.  One may wonder why so? Because not all the time a film is taken in studios or hotels or proper location, sometimes to showcase reality we have to get down to the streets. I have said it so easily but it’s not easy as we think it is. There are quite few challenges to be faced before making that right move and succeeding in it. Some few cheat codes and techniques we gathered are listed below:

Learn to tackle the cops well

Now the first and foremost thing that comes as challenge while taking a scene on the streets especially for short film makers is police. No matter how much you try you will end up facing them. One should not be afraid during the above scenario; there are two methods to deal with this:

  1. Take a proper permission letter signed from your Head of the department or concerned authority and take it to the area police station where you want to shoot and wait for 4-5 days to get things done. If you are not a college student, then someone in the team must be a college student. Or atleast some brother of yours or your team must be a college student 😛

But you’re in hurry and have a deadline to meet, well method two is for you:

  1. Take the permission letter and have it ready, make your face a familiar one to the concerned police station people and when they actually question you while taking shoot tell them you got permission and that you even saw them which is absolutely true. Most officials won’t question further (because they dont read English that well) and give you time limit, try finishing it to cause no further damage.

Now if none of this actually works out jump on to the next point.

Practice the old!

Anything followed over the years is something to be preached, using guerrilla shots for the scenes in streets is one obvious technique to keep things real and lively. We can be able to take scenes from any place or angle where realism is greatly seen as the public are not aware of the fact that they are in a shooting. This is a wonderful idea for two reasons, people actually act for us and we need not pull in any efforts for them to do it correct, another important advantage is that we need not answer anybody because nobody knows, but for this to come out well one must know how to cheat and don’t you worry we will teach you how. Before that do give a look to the film’s guerrilla scenes, near the fruit shop and market where people literally refuse to give change. 

Know the art of cheating

Sometimes what you dream is not what you get. The endeavor to show what you want won’t workout all the time, compromises have to be made but that doesn’t mean people should know it. Here is where our cheat codes come to place. Not all the time can you get permission to shoot in some areas; actually you may never get it. Times like these one has to make people believe it’s the same place. Show the original place you wanted and continue the scene somewhere else similar but make sure it matches so that continuity is not lost.

The first few scenes of the above film below stands best example for this:

The bus stop and share auto we see are five different locations, the place where the hero gets in, the place where he gets down, the close up shot and more have been taken in different locations. Now did you find this out until I told you, clearly this is the technique we are talking about. A good cinematographer who also is the master of the art and suitable locations are all that you need to make this technique work well.

One can always keep the street subjects real through its dialogues, as humor can be brought out through it and at the same time the real time dialogues we hear are kept which makes it so easy for us to connect with the film. The live feeling that it brings to us is the first reason why we can see success following our film.

We have given you few techniques from the experience shared by Director Vikie of Chillra Illa pa film, who Student Filmer thanks and wishes from all our hearts.

Do try out and share your experiences with us to help us out.

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