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Making CherryHow_to_Make_One.jpg (6004 bytes)
a romantic comedy starring Shalom Harlow
"I can't wait for my three-hour turnaround to end, so that I can get right back to it."
--Patrick Gibbons
You've Got Questions? Cherry Has Answers
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Locations:
Ernest and Mammy's Apartment

Weather: Abundant sunshine, lighter winds, Hi: Low to mid 50s..

Sunrise 6:35
Sunset: 5:44

Principals:
Leila, Ernest, Mammy. Marilyn
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Scrambling

Turning Around

The scene (#30, if you're keeping score) takes place in the living room of Uncle Ernest and Mammy's fine Upper West Side apartment. For the master the camera is set on the east side of the room, facing Amsterdam Avenue. The windows are curtained, but streaks of light come pouring through. When you see the shot in Cherry's theatrical release you shouldn't think about the electrics sitting atop 60 foot Condors in the pouring rain, at night, outside the window, while this was being shot.

Don't think about it. In movie time the scene takes place in the morning.

When the angle the camera faces during a scene changes, the action of resetting is called "turning around," or "turning it around." Which is different from turnaround, which is the amount of time a crew or cast member has from the time they quit work one day until the time they start work the next. The main difference, apart from the fact that the two similar expressions have nothing to do with each other, is that turning around always takes too much time, while there is never enough turnaround time.

The reason it takes so much time to turn around is because when the camera moves, so do all the lights. And sometimes a lot of other things move as well. The master of scene 30 was shot at the end of Day 33, while the coverage of the scene, the close-ups on each of the actors, was to be completed on Day 34. At the end of Day 34.

In between, there were some day exteriors to be shot. And for efficiency sake, while the exteriors were filmed in the street, the electrics and grips worked to reset the living room for the coverage. All went smoothly, and when the exteriors were finished the camera was moved inside.

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You would think all would be ready. to roll, good to go as everybody likes to say, but no... As Magdalena, the stand-in (far left), takes Shalom's position, some things becoome clear. None, in and of themselves, are terribly difficult to solve, but in the end the time adds up. In the meanwhile, in spurts, everyone works really hard, and then they wait.

First, the Condors have to be shifted. This is done with Aaron standing in the window, directing the electrics in their buckets by a combination of hand signals and walkie talkie instructions.

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It is then discovered that the antique framed Harvard banner, while a nice touch, happens to reflect all the lights in the room back right at the camera. Joe and Sherri put wads of tape behind it, changing the angle at which is hangs. The result: No reflections.

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While the reflections are being fixed it is decided that the camear must, for part of the scene, be able to see down the long hallway to the kitchen. In the scene David makes that walk, to fetch Oreos and cold milk for his niece Leila.

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Which means that all the cardboard and foam core that protect the parquet floor and carpets and furniture and walls, must all be removed. Lights need to be reset, too, so that they shine from inside the rooms, and can't be seen in the hallway.

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When the big stuff has been moved, Lee and Melissa have to dress the cables so that they do not show up against the white baseboards.

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And then, once the camera is looking down the hallway, David's walk down the hallway to fetch the Oreos needs to be choreographed and timed. At issue is how long he should wait in the kitchen before he turns around and comes back.

It turned out he needn't wait at all before he turns around. But that's a whole 'nother story.

Mail the Cherry Web Man       
Peter Kreutzer  

 

Thursday

(c) 1998 Peter M. Kreutzer