V3 is an opportunity for CWU college students to experience what it's like to be a part of an independent feature film production. The entire project is designed to exploit the resources we have available in and around campus and make it feel big. And it will feel big! Already we have a ton of talented students and a few professional crew members volunteering to oversee and mentor their areas of expertise – but regardless of how many helping hands we have, making a film costs money. We have the skills and drive to make this happen, but to pull it off we're going to need a bit of financial support.
Money. There's no way around it. Films cost money to produce. Believe us, we know ten grand is a lofty goal, but when you're filming an exciting suspense thriller like V3, the cost is justified. Plus, the more you put into a project, the more awesome it will look on screen!
The funds raised will go toward props and set design, camera and lighting gear, grip truck rental, wardrobe and costumes, expendables, location rentals, housing out-of-town cast and crew, providing hot meals during production, post production, music, and editing costs, festival submissions, and marketing.
Dozens of students are already involved behind the scenes preparing for a summer 2012 shoot. We finished the script breakdown last month and are currently scouting locations, discussing the film's production design, and starting the casting process. We're also going to be doing camera tests during spring quarter and if we're blessed with any amount in excess of our goal we'll be able to consider renting a higher-end camera set-up for the production and increasing the production design budget so as to incorporate some of the more inventive ideas the students are contemplating. Additional funds would also allow us shoot slower and spend more time perfecting each scene before having to move on to the next location.
As for the script "V3" – it's a suspense/thriller in the tone and style of The Usual Suspects. Told in non-linear fashion – five grad students invent something that could be considered dangerous and are confronted by an FBI agent who then interrogates them in a somewhat futile effort to unravel the truth. It was written by part-time adjunct professor, Jon Ward, who worked in a previous career as a screenwriter in Hollywood and initiated this project as his graduate thesis for a master's degree in film studies he's completing at CWU.
The overarching goal for this production is to provide the students with a culminating type project that exposes them to the experience of working on a large production from start to finish. Students have been selected for key positions (DP, production design, casting, locations, editing, etc...) then tasked with selecting additional students to round out their departments and provide leadership as we proceed through the production process. Additionally, Jon has recruited various professionals to volunteer their time to mentor these departments thereby bringing current real-world methodologies and skills to the production experience.
Low-budget filmmaking is an extremely exhausting yet rewarding enterprise. We hope you'll take an interest in our project and we look forward to sharing the finished film with you as soon as it is completed!
- (21 days)