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Episode 9 · 2 years ago

SORRY TO BOTHER YOU (2018) with Cinematographer Doug Emmett

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Parth and Trent interview Doug Emmett on his work in the film "Sorry To Bother You"

Edited by Parth Marathe

So, parth, tell me about your recent diet. Well, I have just had some grilled chicken. My father made just grilled chicken, just like a plate with a grilled chicken on it and no sides, pretty much. Yeah, Oh, parth, no offense. It sounds like a bland meal. It was actually quite good. Actually, that's not true. We had we had grilled onions. Oh, but these are just an afterthought. Everything's grilled in the Maratte household sensing a pattern. Was this a whole family affair? Was the whole Marat a clan cook came out for for this function? They did. We grilled in my backyard. Now that the weather is all nice, we've been we've been using that grill a bit because you because you're white people and you live in suburbia and you're just fulfilling the American dream. Is that all? Is that all right? That's me, parth Muratte, Caucasian male. Yeah, what about you, Trent? What have you been eating? Um, I just my mother prepared me a swappy Joe Sandwich. HMM, there was corn on the side. I was thinking about this reminded me of when I saw the Harlem Globe trotters as a child and one of the players was named sloppy Joe and there's another one named Special K and my dad, at his his work, says that all of his coworkers call the special k because his name is Kurt. But it's, you know, humorous because it's insinuating that he has some sort of mental handicap. So kind of an insensitive joke if you ask me. That's kind of messed up. Have you ever seen the Harlem Globetrotters? I've not. Have you ever seen any professional basketball? Occasionally when March madness is on or happening? Oh you. Do you care about that? or You just saying like you and college basketball cross paths and it's fine. Yeah, I'm not a big in general. I'm not a big sports guy. But say, Levy, what what, if any, what sport tickles your fancy the most? Well, I wouldn't say any. Good Gunda Gunda, your head, parth. Well, I'd like it if you didn't threaten me, but I guess you have to do what you have to do. But I guess I don't know part part theoretically, if me and you were to go on a cool night out on the town and it included a live sporting event where we going strictly theoretical football. I guess I've never baseball again this. Well, I've been to like I've been to our college football game, the home of good one go scarlet knights. Yes, wait, part do you often go to the College Football Games? If so, I don't recognize you. No, I've been to two. How were they? I've never been. I went to the first one and it was a lot of fun. Is it just because you have so much school spirit and, like pep, I love rutgers so much that I'm willing to pay full tuition for an online education? Do you think that sort of endorsement will get you a scholarship? I certainly hope so. I'm chilling out for them. Do you think John Rucker's CEO of Ruckers, is listening right now? If I'm sure he's thrilled by this free advertising. He has emails me about how much he is a fan of craft services. WHO's like, Hey, parth, if you just wouldn't mind, I'll give you a large discount on your tuition if you just use NAM drop us. HMM, because rutgers, they have a shortage of students. They're trying to, you know, reach the code owners exactly. Yeah, there are small business like anyone else. HMM. They they need to expand in this capitalistic world of ours. So, parth communism? Your thoughts on it? Pro Anti Mao has some ideas well. Part I don't like you endorsing your your leftist Liberal Agenda here on this non political podcast, so if you could just leave that at the door would be great. I have always maintained that craft services should be a political I do apologize part enough with the the small talk, the pleasant trees. We've let's get that. We've gotten that out of the way. Let's cut to the substance, the the meat and potatoes. Let's give the audience what they paid for. Let's let's let's cue the intro. Welcome...

...back to craft services, where we talk about movies. Each week we discuss a different film and have an interview with the crew member of that film to talk with us about their experience. This week we're going to be talking about sorry to bother you, and with us we have its cinematographer, Doug Emmett. It's a big episode. Everyone, strap on your seatbelts. Going to be a bumpy ride. Trent. We have a new format, do we not? Yeah, part let's talk about the new format. The the listeners are dying for Info on our structure. Well, Trent and I are going to be parting our ways fairly soon. I will be continuing my college education and rent is going to be leaving me for Vermont. Yeah, I'm uneducated and I'm going to teach the children of the world how to ski in in the Northeast. So this is not a joke. Yeah, guys, this isn't a comedy podcast, it's a it's a documentary podcast, so it's non fiction. But anyways, to account for the amount of time we will not have, we've decided to break apart our episodes into two parts. We will release our interviews and want on one week and then the next week we will release our discussion, so that you have an episode every week and you still get the same amount of information. Also, this makes the episodes more digestible, because seeing a ninety minute to to our podcast is pretty intimidating. It is quite unwieldy. Yeah, no one wants to undertake that cumbersome project of listening to us for two hours straight. So instead we're breaking into two one hour sessions, because we're given the people what they want. Hm. The fans of spoken and we've responded, even though this wasn't. This wasn't due to any social backlash. It's as a decision for our own convenience. So it's really had nothing to do with you you self. Was Selfish, selfish listeners at home. Speaking of our selfish listener, should we tell them what the synopsis of Our Film Today Is? Yeah, they're probably just begging the find out, like the basic plot line of the movie. Class that tell them what classic viewers? Yeah, let me tell them. In an alternate present day version of Oakland, telemarketer Cassius Green discovers a magical key to professional success, propelling him into a universe of greed. Who but this movie? A bunch more happens, also not mentioned here. It's a very concise retelling of the story. Part. Did this movie cost any money or was it didn't make it for free, or they actually made it for three point two million dollars. You want to guess how much money it made? Eighteen point three. Yeah, eighteen point three million dollars. Does that sound about right? That was actually perfectly correct. That was exactly what it was. I've got like a sixth sense for this sort of thing. It's like, yeah, my my loins start to quake whenever I know the box office earnings for any given film. anyways, you want to give the production history? Trent yes boots Riley describes the film as an absurdist Dart comedy with aspects of Magical Realis them and science fiction, inspired by the world of telemarketing. The screenplay for sorry to bother you was inspired by his own time working as the toll marketer and tell a fundraiser in California, and is need to put on a different voice in order to find success. Riley finished the screenplay in two thousand and twelve and, with no means to produce it, recorded an album of the same title with his band, the coupe, inspired by the story. The screenplay was originally published in full as part of mixed mix Sweeney's issue forty eight in two thousand and fourteen. In June two thousand and seventeen, it was announced that production would go forward and sorry to bother you, directed by Riley, and that La Keith Stanfield, Tessa Thompson and Steven June had been cast in the film Trent. Can I can I ask you something? This sounds eerily similar to the wikipedia entry of sorry to bother yous production history. See parth. I'm frankly, I'm offended that you would accuse me of plagiarism. The production value of Craft Services Research Team is actually very deep. They're...

...well funded. We spare no expense and all of this content is original and we don't have to cite our sources because we just made it with our brains and are we are our own sources. Yeah, so other people cy us. It's so, so really, if Wikipedia, if you have that in your entry log or whatever, we'd like some cash. Yeah, I think we should sue wikipedia. Well, in June two thousand and seventeen, production went forward on sorry to bother you, and it had a cast including Le Keith Steinfeld or Stanfield, I'm so sorry, as Thompson Steven June. Well, they want to hear it again. Nina Yang Bon Jovi, forest whittaker, Jonathan Duffy, Kelly Williams, Charles d king, George Rush all served as producers on this movie and in it got released in two thousand and eighteen and principle photography took place in Oakland, California, the setting of the film. So was Patton Oswald, the Lucky Sandfield's white voice? Is that? Yes, yes, God, and David Cross was someone else's white voice, right? I think so. I'd sure. I just know that both those white dudes aren't in the movie. So yeah, I would imagine they're credited audio wise. Yes, did you know it was rumor that Steve Bush Emi performed Danny glovers white voice, but but boots Riley, the director, actually confirmed that it was the film sound engineer. So I done less. Yeah, as far as I know, Steve Boush Emmy was in the film sound engineer. That's whack, Trent. Do you did we get anybody to talk about this movie? Yeah, actually we we conducted an interview with, you know, just the cinematographer, Doug Emmett, the cinematographer. That's like the second most important person behind the camera. How did we pull that off? I know, we're just two small town boys who started a podcast, and look at us now. We were growing up on a farm. We show it all. The haters part they thought they could keep us down, but we have overcome the adversity and now we're talking to motherfucking Doug Emmett. All right, so we talked with him. It's it's about a half hour long. We hope you enjoy it. It's a hoot and a half. Guys. Stay tuned. He was super great. Have some fun. Hello everybody, we're here with Doug Emmett. He's the superbly talented cinematographer behind such films as paranormal activity for the edge of seventeen and our them for today. Sorry to bother you, we're incredably excited to be talking with him. So welcome to the show. Thanks for having you, guys. So we like to start our interviews off by just asking what got you interested in the film industry and how how do you find your way in? Yeah, I was really into photography as a kid and I think it just evolved from there. So I was fourteen when I realize that I really want to be a filmmaker and I started taking summer classes at Boston University. I grew up outside of Boston and from there I was really hooked. So I was doing it in high school, making a TV show in high school, and then from there studied film Undergrad at Nyu and thought that I wanted to be a director and then realize that there was a lot of competition to be a director at school and some of those kids had Mohawks and leather jackets and tattoos and I was wearing cargo pants and ill fitting shirts from the gap and I was just like, I don't know that I can compete with these cool kids living in the East village. But there seemed to be a need for cinematographers, so I did that and I studied mostly cinematography through at Nyu and then started working in short film. I like shorts and commercials and music videos, and in my mid S I shot my first feature. So yeah, that's that's sort of like the rundown. And what was your first feature? The tiny movie that we shot in Woodstock. It's called fighting fish and there's a very talented DP that you guys should probably interview at some point, guy named Jody Lee lights who just shot the new Mark Ruffalo Hbo Show and he did well else I mean...

...he's done a lot of movies and like Great Beautiful TV work. So you know, he was asked to do the do the film, and I was a year below him at Nyu and he wasn't able to commit to it and I was like, I think twenty three, and he suggested me, and so that was that. So doing this project and I don't know that many people saw it, but it led to more movies, which was cool, which is like kind of the advice that I always give to younger generations of filmmakers, which is that you should just always shoot and don't ever stop shooting because you just never know what kind of connections you're going to make. And the producers from that film had a buddy that they were producing for making a movie right after we wrapped and his DP had fallen out and fallen through, and so they say well, Hey, doug was good on this last project and it's a similar sized budget. I think we made it for like a hundred fiftyzero right and and it was shooting in New York, in Manhattan, and so that was cool. So they kind of like I slid right into another feature right after that. I mean I'm talking like weeks after. So at twenty three you got to shoot two features and and from there that was really helpful because, like it's hard to get your first feature and once you've gotten your first speech, er shot, then it's a whole lot easier to get hired for your second in your third. So yeah, a little bit of a pivot. So how did you get involved with our chosen film? Sorry to bother you, sorry to bother these the way I got involved as a good story. I was shoot. I was supposed to be shooting a movie in New York. So I was two thousand and seventeen May, two thousand and eight April, May, two thousand and seventeen. I'm supposed to be shooting in New York. I had been prepping for about three or four weeks. I was staying in the lower east side and a nice hotel, I was being taken care of, was making good money and I was like hey, this is going really, really well. I it was like a decent size movie for Netflix, and then our actor dropped out and then that was it. We were like two and a half weeks out from shooting and she just I think what happened. They had recast one of the other cast members and she wasn't cool with it and I think she just thought that there were probably a better projects out there for her, so she left. She's like a issue. was like a big name, and I don't want to say it, but like it was enough that the movie had to wrap up and I went home back to La with no movies lined up for the summer, and that was depressing because generally, if you're going to work over the you know the next the months of like June, July, August, you would have been interviewing in April or May for that job, and so now I was like facing a few months without work and I was like a little nervous and upset and I called my agent, and his name is Matt and he, Matt, works at UTA and I was like to give them a shout out because Youta is a really great agency and they've been really helpful for my career. And so Matt said, Hey, listen, Doug, I've funny you should ask, because I was like hey, man, I need a movie, like what do you got? And it goes all you know, there aren't a lot of options, but I've got this one small little indie feature and you know, it's only a two million dollar budget and it's he pitched it to me and if you've seen the movie starry to bother you, then you know that that's probably a really insane, a hard pitch, especially to do in like a few sentences and and I was like a little bit like oh I okay, I don't really know if that's up my alley or not, but sounds cool. And it's a first time director. I was like, Oh man, all right, well, I've worked with a few first time directors. I've worked one two million dollar movies. I was, you know, just had been working on like a twenty million dollar movie, so that was kind of tough, you know. And I was all right, well, I don't know anything about this guy boots and I don't know anything about the film. So I asked my wife to start reading the script and and she was like twenty pages in and she was just like you got to get in here, you got to read this thing. And so we start reading it together and it was really a fun experience of that kind of going back and forth being like are you what page? You One? Oh, I'm on this page all. What have you like? Have you have they had the horse seene yet and you like the Horse scene? What horse singing? Like? All right, we'll just wait. And it was like a very obvious by the time I was done reading the script, that they had been like it was like the best script I've ever read and it was so out there and unique and cool that I got on a plane like later that evening and flip to Oakland to meet with boots booths lives in Oakland, and and then I think that like maybe that was over a weekend. So I'd gone from, you know, on a Monday shooting a movie in New York to like that Sunday now shooting a movie in Oakland. And it's amazing because I truly feel like that movie has changed my career and but I also think it's starting to slowly define my style or define like what I want to really be as a cinematographer or like, or the type of photography I want to start leading into. Like I like shooting all types of film genres, but there's something so creatively freeing about working with boots and exploring that side of our creativity that was exciting for me that I don't normally get to do. So so yeah, so I do feel like I'll change my life a...

...little bit and so you never know, you just never know. So yeah, man, that's a story. Well, I mean it's a it's a great movie if you like, working all sorts of genres. It's kind of genrealists in a word, and has all the genres in it, but sort of. Since we were talking about boots Riley, what was your relationship with him like, because that's a very visually specific and intense movie, so we were wondering what the relationship between the cinematographer and director would be in that. What's great about boots as that he'd been a musician for many years and so he was used to collaborating with other musicians and artists. So he comes from a place of of like knowing that this that this art form of filmmaking is collaborative and then it's not just one person, right. So he was really open to hearing my ideas and my input, but he also came super prepared and he came with a lot of references. He came with a lot of concepts and ideas for the film. But it just he created an environment where we all felt like we as and me, the costume designer, the production designer. He just made it so that we all felt very comfortable sharing ideas and that was cool. So he was really open to that. He's he's really versed in like the the world of cinema. So he knows all sorts of directors and films that I didn't even I hadn't even heard of, and so that was kind of cool. So I was a little bit of like a film school exccastion for me working with boots. And then when we got to set, he had he had boots a Baluncet for music videos and he directed one or two and he'd gone to film school. But largely I think the set experiences was kind of new for boots and so that was nice as well. Where like he and I worked really well together on set and I think that there was a lot of mutual trust, like not only does the director have to trust their DP to be able, like, you know, light it and frame it up and do it in like a timely manner and make sure that, you know, all the equipment is there and the crews there and whatever, but like the DPD he's really he's a really trusted director. Right. So if I boots, is boots of the kind of guy who's going to ask for some wild stuff and in and approach scenes and photography in a way that I'm not used to. necessarily. I was approaching it, which is cool because it challenged me and asked me to kind of like think outside of my narrow box or my narrow perspective of like how you do things. And so that was a really like liberating experience and I learned a lot about myself in that experience and I definitely grew as a filmmaker. So, like you know, not only do we make a good movie and shoot some nice looking things and have a good time doing it, but but truly I felt like I grew leaps and bounds on that project and and now I'm I have a lot more confidence and I find that I'm much more willing to explore and be loose. And here's ideas from directors and normally you might, you know, react away say it boots is asking for something that you might think is impossible to pull off or will be way too challenging to pull off on a small budget that we had or the time that we had. We had twenty six days to shoot the movie. We had a two million dollar budget. So like normally you might just say, Oh, Hey, no, man, like sorry, that's not possible. But there was this thing about boots that was like so inspiring that you just Oh, you never wanted to let him down, you always wanted to try and achieve his vision, and so I found myself really leaning into that and a that was cool and I think I learned now, is a DP and collaborator, to just always try and keep an open mind, and I think maybe that's something like, if I can impart that on anyone who's listening today, that like you know, there's like you might think there's a right way and a wrong way to do things, but if you're willing to let yourself be challenged and keep an open mind, you you'll be surprised that you can, you can accomplish something like far greater than you thought was ever possible to begin with. So that that was really gratifying. Yeah, just since we're talking about the film's fluid genre, one of our professors had a question for you, Adam Vol Rich, how you created a visual language and how you went about choosing lenses for the Senatorre fan this film. Cool, hi, Adam, nice question. We we decided on Anamorphic as our Lens format because we we thought that in their specific type of lenses that we used called their cook lenses, and they distort the edges of frame and lines and the lines and frames that they cause things to bow and to warp a little bit. So we thought that was a nice kind of visual representation of the world that Cassius lives in. Things...

...are like a little bit distorted, right. So so that was that was kind of cool. We also just liked how cinematic the aspect ratio and the anamorphic felt. But of but then we we decided that the photography shouldn't be like overly wacky or overly aggressive with the framing and the lens choices, because we feel like that was necessary. Like the film itself is already pretty out there, so we didn't need to you know, artificially added. Yeah, guilding the lily is not the right word, but like turn but like you, we didn't need to get artificially push it. We were going to do that with some of the color and the lighting choices we made, but we we thought that the the framing could be somewhat more traditional. I don't know if that's if that's what we end up doing, I think that it looks. I think it could have been crazier and I'm glad that we didn't push it that extra amount that it kind of helps you believe in the world. Apart, just going to say it's a good juxtaposition because like the first half compared to the second half is like enough of like a radical shift. Yeah, and then the film itself shifts around a lot. So there's something nice about the consistency of the photography. So that that was kind of Nice for us. The other thing was like in terms of the visual language, like we used Oakland as an inspiration in terms of color along of the time in terms of wardrobe and how we lit the spaces and what colors we chose to paint the sets. So you know, there are many days or he boots and I would be out scouting and and you'd look at all the phenomenal artwork on in the streets of Oakland and you walk into these bars and restaurants or people's homes and lamps would have had their bulbs changed out to you know, unique weird colors and just lighting that you would never really expect to find and people's homes, and so that was really, really cool. So we used that. We incorporated that a lot into the like are the inspiration for the look of the movie. So you mentioned before that the budget for this was a very modest two million dollars, which is shocking considering how great it looks. But so we were wondering how budget affects your photography and just sort of as a two parter, we read that after the premier at Sundance there was additional funding to do some reshoots and if you could speak on to what that ended up being now. I'll start with that part first. The additional funding was came from the distributor, Anapurna, and there were some things in the riot seeing that boots wasn't able to pull off because we didn't have the time or the money to do it. So there's a there's two things. There's the ending changed a little bit. At the very end of the movie we shot one of the EQUI. SAPIENS, kicking down the door in the mansion, in Steve Lifts Mansion. That wasn't in the movie. Initially it just ended. The film ended with cash as at the gates trying to get into the house and then ended on a close up of Steve Lift space. But at the very end and we added a Cassius kicking down the door. That was at it. The other thing that was added was there was like a truck in the riot see where there's like a police Swat team van truck that arrives and then that you could say apiens push it back out of frame and they like pull the driver out and they they kind of they like mess with the truck. So that was something that we shot on the green screen and they camped it into our into the edit. So those are the the two things. It was a day of shooting and it was all done on green screen. So yeah, so in terms of like the look of the film or like how does the budget effective photography? I mean it affects it greatly in the sense that we just don't have a lot of time to do everything we want to be able to do, because at the end of the day it's just like how many shooting days do you have? We have twenty six days. We have a lot of locations. So that what that mean's like you were likely moving locations every day. I'm pretty sure that there was a company move in every single day. If not, Abe was every other day and it was really an intense shoot for us. We don't have big lights on set, we don't have a lot of lights on set. We certainly don't have a lot of crew. So when you have very little money, there's just like there's just so much less you can do. But if you can lean into it and you just you you have to get excited by like the resources that you have and you have to fully utilize those. But you can't try and do more than that, because if you start trying to do bigger light and bigger this or bigger that, then you slow yourself down and you shoot yourself in the foot. So you have to be really cautious and mindful of like the resources that you have. It's a bit like the look. The Look at the movie. Like we didn't have to, we don't have to do a tremendous amount of lighting and when we did, we had we had airy sky panel, so you can choose whatever color you want and...

...you just you have to be, you know, clever about how you're lighting things with the only a couple lights and then I guess, I guess that's I mean, that's basically it's hard to say like how the budget affected the the look of the movie. The really with a budget does it is it just it affects the amount of time that you have to craft your shots and you know, we'd have to do seven pages a day right. So normally you might be doing four pages a day, three and a half pages a day, or whatever it might be. Sure some days you have a bigger day, but this was just like go, go, go, go, go, and so you don't often have time to do a lot of rehearsing. A lot of the stuff that you saw in the movie was like maybe was the first take, you know, maybe it was the rehearsal take. We're's bits and pieces, you know, because we just didn't have the time. Yeah, so that's that's pretty much that. So this is more of a like an objective, like less personal question, but as a cinematire, for like, what are your responsibilities in preproduction compared to while on set, and do you use like shot list sketches? Like what is your personal like preparation, and also, are you involved in post? Yeah, so I'll kind of like mild my preprostyle toward whatever the director wants to do. So the director wants to sit down and chick every shot and write out a huge, big documentary shot lists, will do that. If the director says, Hey, listen, like I can't shot list until I see all the locations. That's fine. So we'll try and see as many locations as possible in preproduction and and then sketches are helpful. I will definitely do sketches if we're trying to like communicate certain camera movement and blocking, because that's a hard thing to just talk about. So it's best to have a pad with you and draw us your yeah, something, just two figures. Yeah, I mean really down and dirty, awful sketches, but it's enough to convey where the cameras and like where people are moving. And because it's so funny, because like I could, I could, I could speak to you right now about how I want to move a camera through a space and where the actors are standing and and we all may not an agreement and when we get on set, the directors like, Oh, I thought the cameras going to be over there, and the actors hearing like, Oh my God, no, I that's not how I set up the shot, because I thought we meant this, and it's like, well, it's neither. It's no one's fault, but putting it really is the DP's job, I think, to communicate really clearly and to make sure that the directors understanding the concept in the approach, and it's also your job done to really try and fully under understand whatever it is the director is articulating. You might think that you understand, but but generally there's a lot of misfusication and assumption that is made, and so it's just best if you guys can like sit down sketch things out. That's huge. The shot lists or useful, but they're more useful just as like a general like plan that you should you intend to break at some point. Like you don't have to get every single shot necessarily and sometimes will even prioritize them in order the shots that we know we need to get. and and sometimes, like if you're working in TV, like I'm doing a TV show right now, like we don't need to shot list every scene because it's going to be a an establishing wide shot, it's going to be an overtheshoulder, another over the shoulder and then insert of whatever it is they're talking about and then you move on. And so you don't need to write down every single scene. But if it's something like a boots Riley movie, yeah, it's probably gonna have to get shot list it because there's so many specific camera moves and if there's so much intention on where the cameras going to go and what it's looking at. And it's also helpful just for a first time collaboration between a DPN director and never work together. And then the other component to prepping is just really looking at a lot of references and I like looking a lot of photography. I like looking at design and architecture books for lighting, I like looking at at all sorts of different types of photography. And then movies, but I have found that I don't really sit down and watch movies sidebyside with the director. I used to do that, but it's it's time consuming. Mostly these directors don't have a lot of time to do that. So what they might do is say, Hey, you know, here are three or four movies I want you to go watch and there's a couple scenes in here I want you to check out, and then I'll do that and then maybe that that will spark some memory of mine of a movie that I want the director then watch. So I'll make sure that they see that. And so it's a little bit of like a fun like exchange of ideas and concepts and then the visual like language of your movie evolves in Preproduction, but it doesn't really fully evolved until you just start shooting. And then you start getting a sense of like people's taste and what they like what they don't like, and that could like that comes into like Lens Selection, and you know you can. You can describe what a Lens looks like to someone along ones or a wide lens or this or that, and you can show them images, but it's not until you get to set and you have it on the camera can a director really look at and say, Oh, yeah, I like this or no, no, that, that looks terrible. You know, let's change the Lens, let's try something else. I'm trying to think what else in pre production. I mean, I always say, and I think that...

...a lot of people would agree with me, that like, most of the problems that you're going to encounter on set can be solved in preproduction and it's great to try and get ahead of any issues in advantage. Usually that might be like a cruise eyes thing, like you might not have enough money for crew, so you need to be smart about how you allocate that. You might know that, like one location requires a lot more people to set up a lot of lights, right, so you know to allocate more people for that day and and then you can steal from another day. And Yeah, so the terms of post production, the DP's and involved only to the extent that they're doing color grading. So that's like sitting in the DII theater and usually they'll give you like eight ten days of color grading with a colorist and that's and then you're essentially grating for theatrical release and the colorists, after you're done, will then regrade it for a video and for streaming and television. So is the director there also when your color grading? Yeah, it's ideal. Yeah, certainly they might not be there the whole time. Like a lot of movies, you'll find they have to do color and sound mixing all at the same time because the release schedule you just start getting crammed at the end and so you'll find that they kind of bounce back and forth and then I might not I might not be there the whole time either, like we might just set individual looks for every scene and then I leave in the colorist works on balancing every single shot and then we'll come back and rewatch the work that they did and then we'll make independent, you know, adjustments here and there, and then at the very end, usually the process is like you set your color and you get the color right for every scene, for every shot, and then you can get getting to like the real, the nitty gritty minutia of like put a power window over that person's face and brighten it a little bit. Or that wall is a little bit too bright, so let's dark in that wall. It's added then yet here. Okay, now let's add some film. The grain overall, like what's what film grain do you like? How much, how little? A little bit of softening on actors faces if it needs it. So all that stuff you source. Save like the last day of color grading or two to do that and in more elaborate power does. They could be done while you're not there, because that stuff takes time for the color as to do. So yeah, two weeks is generally kind of accepted for finishing a movie and Post. So you've worked in documentary and on documentaries and and television as well. So how does the different platforms sort of change your process, if at all? So question. I think we go documentary, you generally need to be able to be much more, I guess, like so we're looking for you got to well, you not can have a lot of equipment, you're not gonna have a lot of crew. So you have to be like really thoughtful about like it forces you to think about your time today, like where are you shooting the interviews? You probably don't have a whole lot of control on like windows and lighting. So you want to be really clever and smart about like the path of the sun and is the room that you're in, you know, conducive, and is it going to look nice or will it be a problem? And you're really just like you might just be you and like one grip, you know, you and one electrician. Maybe you get an AC if for a couple days. It really depends on what you're shooting. But yeah, for documentaries you learn to like work with the natural light, which is a really cool it's a cool challenge and you end up being able to use that in your filmmaking, like when you're doing features and TV, like the show that I'm starting right now, where we've been discussing doing a lot of like using a lot of available light and and trying to do less lighting with film lights and you know, it's a little bit of combination both, but it's I'm trying to challenge myself much more than I normally would to use way less light and it's also just because we're struggling to deal with the fact that we just can't have as many crew members on set as we normally would, and so we're trying to keep the lighting outside of the houses and spaces that we're in and we're trying to do much more with just like flags and bounces and trying to remove light where we need to remove light and this and that. So it's like less equipment, lest people on set, and I think that will that will lend itself to looking much more organic and kind of real. So yeah, I don't know, I think that'll be a challenge. And so in terms of television, like television and and TV and working on films is generally to me it's all sort of the same approach. The thing that I don't love about working on TV shows is you have these like rotating directors that come in and do an episode and then leave and you don't get to you don't get to kind of like unpack this the the episodes or this scripts as much as you would if you're working with a future director and you just have less time to to kind of, I don't know, maybe like lean into certain concepts and really explore stuff together. And then also your doing more pages...

...per day. So you need to just be really nimble and quick when you're when you're doing television, it's put you know, TV like if you if you can, if you get lucky and work on a TV show where there's just one or two directors, and in this instance I'm working primarily with one director who also wrote and is directing the show, you know, writing and acting in the show, and so that's kind of cool. So that feels much more like a film process to me. So yeah, but in terms of photography, it's all the same equipment, this same size of crew, and then you might be lucky to find a crew and television that's work together for like say, like ten or fifteen or twenty years, and so those guys all have a shorthand so then and then you're like really taking care of because then they have a rigging crew and then they can they kind of like take care of a lot of stuff for you that you don't have to solve quite as many problems. They kind of anticipate that stuff, which is kind of cool. That's been my experience and working in some bigger TV shows. So, if you're allowed to disclose this information, what is the show you're working on now and how else has coronavirus affected your ability to work as a man in the film industry? Yeah, so the film that I'm working on it, or the TV show that I'm working on right now. It is called on the verge and it's I think it'll be on Netflix and it's coming out. I don't know when it's coming out, but it's a twelve part comedic series and in the way it's being affected right now is that we we don't we have a limited amount of resources and we don't have a studio that we can go and ask for more money. So we are spending more money on preventive measures because of Covid and so a lot of the budgets now allocated toward trying to keep people safe and less of it will now go into being able to hire more crew and have maybe more shoot days or have more camera equipment, and so that's a challenge, you know, and you just you got a roll with the punches, like we're all happy and excited, I think, to get back to work. I haven't I haven't worked in since November, and so it's now, you know, the middle of August, and so it's I had a baby, or my wife had a baby in December and there we were doing the Ma turn peri you leaf thing and I was ready to go back to work in April or May, and then all this happens. So I'm I'm ready, you know, I'm ready to get back to work and I'm excited by this project. It's a really good script and some really talented cast members, and so I think that what we have to do, though, like I was saying about boots, as movie, when you have some limited resources, you just need to learn to lean into it and you need to not try and work outside of the realm of what's possible so that you can keep moving and be fluid. You want to be like a quick, fluid machine. If you start trying to do too much, you'll slow it down and and honestly, is a DP like. I don't think it's really fair to the director to spend all this time lighting and setting up elaborate shots and if you start eating into that time that they have from to work with our actors. I think that's a shame because you're ultimately I think it's to the disservice of the movie or the show that you're working on if your actors don't have enough time to work. I mean who? I don't know many people that want to go see a really beautifully lit movie that's like horrific acting and horrific directing, but they spent all time lighting. I G it just doesn't it's not conducive to your career as well. You know, like no one's going to go watch that movie if it's if they can't, if the acting isn't any good. So so, yeah, I just lean into just yeah, you like this is true for any budget that you're working on. It'll never be enough money. You'll never have enough time or money to do it the way you want to do it. But then, like, some of the most beautiful stuff will create will come out of your creative necessity to like overcome some challenges and you'll be surprised and I could sell be happy with that. And so it's all process like and I'm excited to learn like. So, as a DP, like if I'm if I'm trying something new and trying something a little bit different than I normally do, then that's exciting for me and I feel like I'll continue to keep growing and that's such that's what's so cool and exciting about this career is that you can constantly reinvent yourself a little bit and you can continue to grow. And so, yeah, I'm excited by it. I'm you know, at first, when you start in preproduction, you're always a little bit frightened and you're your equally, you don't quite know what it's going to look like just yet. And then you get out to set, you start shooting and then like second nature completely takes over and then you're good and then you're going to go, but it just it takes a minute to get there. So just real quick, like what percent of like crew members from like the before times, like are they're like now? Like how much of they consolidated, and like how are they like? Who are they doing away with? I don't know that they've they've done away with anyone. I think we just have fewer people. So, like the art department will have fewer people on set. My my...

...team will be smaller than it normally is in terms of how many electricians and grips you can have on set and and I'm sure that's true for a lot of the departments. But but you know, we'll do the best we can and it's slower. Everything will be slower, and I think that there's a little bit of like agitation for people having to wear masks for, you know, twelve hours a day and goggles and face shields and there's certain ways that you can like enter an exit a set. People are expected to kind of move in in a direction that is designed to prevent the spread of it, you know, the virus. So you might only be able to use one entrance and one exit and you have to go a certain way and you're supposed to stay six feet apart, and so that's tough because on set, you know, you usually you're used to whispering to people and you're used to like huddling over drawings and plans and getting close to each other, and so we're going to have to come work against our second nature. It's it's going to be intense. Yeah, it'll be really, really tough, I think, but hopefully we'll just will get used to it and we know hopefully that this is not a permanent thing. So we're we're hoping that this all goes well and I think we're hoping that the shoot will be successful so that we can show the industry that it can be done and it can be done safely and we can get people back to work. Just as a last question before we have to let you go, you worked on great movie the edge of Seventeen, and I was wondering if you could talk about what that experience was like. Yeah, that was cool that we you know, I'm really had that. That's a great example of a film that was written to be in southern California and then, with the budgetarily, they realize that shooting in Vancouver would be their best bet and they would save more money with a tax incentive, and I think that was like the greatest thing that could have happened that movie because totally, totally it looks so specific to that region and I think that it matches that the tone of the movie so so well. There's a kind of like a lot of there's a little bit of like an overcast and Vibe to the film and you it always feels like it's just about to rain or has just rained, and so there's something kind of Nice about that. I think that that story was suited for them environment. So that was kind of cool. That was not something when I read the script I was expecting. And even when we were scouting every day and prepping, it was sunny and bright and I kept thinking like, Oh, I thought Vancouver was supposed to be rainy. And then I swear the day we started shooting and then for the rest of the shoot at rand every day. So that was kind of a cool surprise. And then and then, in terms of like the look of that, I think it's a very simple look, which I really like, and I think that the camera work is designed to just be very like presentational and it's obviously told from the perspective of Nadine, but there's, yeah, there's something a mission about the camera work, which I liked about that as well. And then we just try to make the lighting look nice and in natural. I mean everyone's got their own definition naturals. I hate, hate actually using that word because everyone just says, oh, I want natural, I will like natural light. Is Different to everyone, but there's something nice in the unadorned about the look of the movie, which which which wasn't necessarily even my first instinct on on how to shoot it, and so I give the director, Kelly, a lot of credit for for coming up with the idea of that look and it was nice to lean into that because I think that that wouldn't have necessarily been my first instinct, and so you kind of work against your instincts and sometimes I can lead to like you know, that can be challenging for collaborators and I'm glad that that Kelly had that concept because it really looks nice and I think that the movie will also age well because they'll have some sort of like a timeless vibe, just like the John Hughes movies have a timeless vibe. If you went and caught like, you know, a brand new print, a new screening of breakfast club or home alone, or you saw it on like Newk, you know, new forcase can, you'd be surprised because that's stuff looks like it was shot yesterday. The photography is really slick and timeless and I'm used to seeing all those movies on VHS. I'm like really crappy old TV's, so like to me, my memory of those movies is not what they actually look like. So, yeah, so, anyway, that I'm kind of diverging there, but I do want to say there's something kind of cool. People talk a lot about. A color said this to me recently. This color is this Guy Peter Doyle. He graded Harry Potter movies and he grated some cone brothers films and he graded Lord of the ring. So He's, you know, he's big...

...time colors. And he said people come in here always asking for, you know, I want to really filmic. Look, can you take my digital camera and make it filming? You know, listen, I said the same thing to him. You know, it's like every filmmaker is going to say that. And he said what people are actually asking for is not for to look like film, they're asking for it to look like the memory that they have a film, and it's kind of kind of a cool concept that I hadn't really considered, because we all have our own perception and memory of what film really looks like. So so that that was like. So it's fun today. Is that like the color grading process and that the process of designing a lot for your cameras like way more unique and personal to the filmmaker than it used to be. You know, it's the Look of cinema is like constantly evolving, which is kind of cool, and I think right now we're in a place where we're able to be really unique in in create individual looks that we can evolve over our own careers. But it's no longer this thing where you just pick, you know, one of three or four film stocks, you know, and just lightly graded by printer lights. That's how they used to do it when it was all done in film, and so you were really limited. And now, obviously you guys know this, like there's just like there's an infinite amount of ways to manipulate your image to make it look however you want. So that's really exciting. And also with like led lighting, like that has changed the game for everyone lighting wise, and I think if you watch like music videos from the last ten years and you watch films from last ten years, all of a sudden you see this like a massive burst of color where there was never that much color used on set before. But because people can do it now, they're doing it and I have to wonder that if like will look back at this period like ten, twenty, thirty years from now. I'm big Oh, that's that's so, you know. So it feels so dated. You know, like we look, we look at the way that they would use the Zoom Lens back in the seventies and back on Mat such a dated look and no one uses zooms like that anymore. But like that lends, it just come out, you know, it just become the new hot thing. So, yeah, this evolution of film is interesting and exciting to me as well. So I'm to wrap it up, I'd say I'm excited to see what you guys end up with. I'm curious to see what the next generation of filmmakers will do with with the new technology, whenever that you guys have available to you. Well, thank you, thank you. Yeah, that's a good closing note. So that's all the time we have. Thank you so much to our guests. Doug Emmett. He was the cinematographer on sorry to bother you, which is streaming on Hulu. You can find it there, and thank you so much for coming on. Thanks, guys, were go on. Thank you again to our guests, Doug Emmett. He was absolutely swell, what a what a lovely man. We enjoyed having him and what a great time part did you enjoy the interview or was that torture for you? I actually had a very good time. All right, just wanted to confirm. So next week we'll be releasing the discussion portion. It'll be our thoughts. Maybe we'll have a guest. Who knows? Maybe we won't, but maybe we will. Actually, I can confirm now that we wait. Actually we will be having guests. We don't know. We don't know. That's part of the mystery. That's why I set that's why I said we might or we might not, because I don't want to disappoint people. But you know, yeah, the here on Cross Service is expect the unexpected. There could be several guests, there could be a or zero. There could be negative. Guess we might not even be there. You know, it might just be several hours with of white noise, with is that just when you talk with parth and I like fighting in the background and you'll just hear like meat slapping together and you're be like, well, they're wrestling, but there's no visual component. So you probably wouldn't stick around for that long, because who would just listen to the audio of a wrestling match, would you? Part? No comment. Well, that's enough of that see you next week. By fellas,.

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