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The Biggest Challenges the Portland Film Festival Filmmakers Faced

The Biggest Challenges the Portland Film Festival Filmmakers Faced

The 2015 Portland Film Festival kicked off on September 1 and runs through September 7. The festival reached out to filmmakers with movies screening and asked them for the most memorable moments during production. In many cases, the most memorable moments were also the most challenging moments. Below we’ve highlighted an assortment of responses: 

READ MORE: Filmmaker Survey: What We Wish We Knew Before Making Our First Movie

“The film utilizes an improvised script, i.e. the story was built through six weeks of rehearsals. The cast were not aware of the details of the case until the day before shooting and were handed a loose 40-page ‘script’ the night before photography. From there the film’s shots, structure and dialogue were improvised in sequence.” – Sridhar Reddy, “6 Angry Women”

“The whole thing was practically entirely shot with a one-man crew… Everything was a huge challenge.” – Daniel Barosa, “GRU-PDX”

“We were trying to find a 10-inch dildo for a prop because the dildo we had was too small. On the day of shooting, production designer Greg McMickle went to several sex shops in town and had to wear special gloves to handle the dildo due to health code policies. He called me up very business-like and asked if I wanted the black one or the white one.” – Steven Richter, “Birds of Neptune”

“My asthma flared up the entire night of filming and my inhaler was running on empty. After filming, I went to urgent care.” – Danny Simonzad, “Artificial Sweetener”

“During an evening shoot at the park, there were hundreds of mosquitos flying around the crew. I asked the actors to stand still because we were shooting slow portraits. It was so hard for them because the mosquitos kept on sitting on their faces and ruined a lot of shots.” – Karol Kolodzinski, “Cotton Candy”

“All the effects were performed practically, on set. Our actress really did run through real fire. She performed all her own stunts, including falling backwards off a twelve foot tower.” – Nicholas Livanos, “Elegy”

“Working with Monty, the dog star of the film, and dealing with his impulses were probably the most challenging and yet rewarding moments because it allowed us as actors to be in the moment, and as directors and cinematographers it tested our ability to adjust when shots don’t go as planned.” – Kyla Lowder, “Ignatius”

“What better way to start a film shoot than to all get naked? Day 1 we shot the skinny-dipping scene. After a moment of hesitation actors, producers, the director and anyone who was willing jumped into the freezing cold water in their birthday suits. It certainly was a way to quickly get to know each other! Freshmen grips were scarred for life.” – Hannah McDonald, “Juniper”

“Probably the biggest challenge in making ‘Kitchikewana’ was figuring out the logistics of shooting on a moving vehicle. We only used natural lighting and all our days out on the boat were pretty sunny. The captain had to pull some tricky maneuvers to keep the sun on the proper side of our actors.” – Jonathan Duder, “Kitchikewana”

“Traveling through the tsunami zone with our contributors (who had never left home) in search for strangers. It was a HOT summer in Japan. There was no infrastructure where we were due to the tsunami. We were a crew of four and shared one tatami room with our contributors which included communal bathing. Needless to say, we are all pretty close now.” – Nicolina Lanni and John Choi, “Lost and Found”

READ MORE: 2015 Portland Film Festival Announces Full Lineup

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