Don’t Shoot the Celebrant!

Nov 12, 2013

It’s not every day that your lounge turns into a Pinewood Studios set! But last week this particular celebrant’s lounge underwent the Hollywood treatment.

Well, OK, I’m exaggerating a bit, but as you can see from my pictures, I had a couple of business videos shot at home.

When I asked Em Cummings (“Mr BBC”) to film these for me, we agreed that each video would last between one and two minutes. Four minutes’ work: how long could that take, for goodness sake?

Rather longer than I expected, as it turned out!

Em arrived, as arranged, at about 9.30. The kitchen sink was then unloaded from his batmobile, which, along with a cuppa, took a good half an hour. Another hour passed, as Em set up the lights, filters, green screen, camera and, for all I know, a microwave and  threshing machine!

Having prepared for it all to be filmed in glorious sunshine, Em then had to set up an extra curtain, as the sun decided to spend the rest of the day coming in and out..

We finally got down to filming (first attempts) around midday. Naturally, a professional like myself would only need one or two takes. Astonishingly, it took rather more than that (but then, Em must be a perfectionist – it can’t have been any failings on my part!). Anyway, we had one take ‘in the can’ by lunchtime.

Apart from a quarter of an hour’s break, we were back at work in the afternoon. A few hundred takes later (about six, actually), the other video was ‘in the can’ (sorry, the jargon’s getting to me!).

Well, surely another few minutes and it’ll all be ready.

No. I didn’t count on the editing! Or on downloading the music and stills which we had chosen beforehand (mercifully!).

At about 5.30 I unceremoniously threw Em out into the night. The job wasn’t finished, but he could do the rest at his ‘leisure’.

Was it worth all the upheaval? Please have a look at these YouTube links and let me know what you think

Michael Gordon can help prepare and conduct a tailor-made life-cycle ceremony in or around London or, indeed, in Europe.