Thursday, December 22, 2011

Behind the Scenes of "The Wheels," Part Two

For my Intermediate Narrative film at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, I wrote and directed The Wheels, a very personal story about an alcoholic father and his young son, and a study of their strained relationship over the course of a long day at an amusement park. In order to raise money for this production, I created an IndieGoGo campaign in early September, where I received extremely kind contributions from friends, family and coworkers. In less than twenty-six days, the campaign raised $1,331.00, almost double the amount of my initial $750.00 goal. I sent the following update to the wonderful contributors after our second and final day of shooting on Sunday, October 23rd. Here is a link to the IndieGoGo campaign:

Dear Contributors,

Thank you all so much again for your incredibly kind contributions to my film The Wheels. As I said before, the production of this movie would not have been possible without your help, and the fact that you have successfully funded this project means the world to me.

After a long day of incredible work on Sunday, October 23rd, The Wheels is officially wrapped. From an artistic standpoint, I could not be happier with the results of this shoot. The two lead actors, Tom Corbisiero and Dan Hasse, gave searing and wonderfully moving performances, and I know that when it comes time for me to review their performances in the editing room (which will be quite shortly, in fact), it will be challenging to choose among the many extraordinary takes from each scene.

The cast and crew arrived in Coney Island early Sunday morning, and we began by shooting the opening scene of the film, which takes place on the Coney Island Boardwalk. At noon, we began shooting the final scene of the picture, which takes place on a sidewalk just outside of Deno's Wonder Wheel. After an equipment move back to Manhattan, we shot the days final scene in the bathroom of New York University's Todman Center for Film and Television, the only scene from the film not shot on location in Coney Island.

It is worth mentioning that the people who crewed on this film are not only my very talented peers and classmates at the Tisch School of the Arts, they are also my dearest and closest friends. Without their support of this project and dedication to their craft, this film would not exist. The crew consisted largely of the same people who worked on The Wheels on the first shooting day, with a few welcome additions: Producer Erica Rose, Art Director Madeline Wall, Assistant Cameraman Andrew Griego, Gaffers Jon Annunziata and Ryland Tews and Set Photographer/ Digital Imaging Technician Jeremy Keller. Returning veterans from the first day of The Wheels shoot included the extraordinary Ben Dewey (Director of Photography), Bobb Barito (Sound Mixer), Mattheau OBrien (Assistant Director), Mike Cheslik (Assistant Director) and Miki Benyamini (Boom Operator).

As The Wheels officially moves into post-production, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your contribution to this film. With your help, I was able to make an extremely personal film, with the best possible group of people, all in less than two months! Thank you so much.


Jack Kyser

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