Saturday, November 14, 2015

Acting in Top 10 Short Film 'Nightmare' for Movie Makers 我要当导演 2015 Competition

How I Ended Up Acting for a Short Film

I couldn't have imagined being able to act in a short film as the lead actress but the opportunity came one day when one of the producers, Eric, sent me a message through Facebook asking me if I would like to go for the audition for this role in a short film called "Nightmare".  I was pretty free around that period, so I thought why not try for this, even though I didn't have much acting experience.

Lingual, the main producer, emailed me a script but assured me that I wouldn't need to memorise the lines as she was more concerned with my facial expressions.  The audition went off well and by the end of that day, Lingual watsapped me to confirm my role in the short film which she was directing and which would be submitted for Movie Makers 我要当导演 2015 competition.

It was a great honour to be working with the crew which comprised of people who are very passionate about film making and we all wanted to achieve perfection in every scene for this film.

Lingual did a wonderful job guiding me in terms of the emotions and facial expressions which I should portrayed for each scene, as I was a novice when it came to acting.  The story is about a woman who was haunted by her own guilt as she was seeing a married man, whose wife was pregnant.  My role was called  Zhi Lin, btw.

The Days of Filming

I reported for filming around 11.30am and rehearsed some facial expressions required, while the crew set up the camera set and sound system.  We started filming officially around 2pm.

Some photos taken behind the scenes.  This was Zhi Lin's room.

Since this film was called 'Nightmare', how could we not have some scary scenes appearing?


The hardworking makeup artistes doing their magic on Madeline, who was acting as the "ghost".


It started to get scarier with the long haired wig.




She was almost done!


How could I let go of this opportunity to take a photo with the 'ghost' which was supposed to the personification of Zhi Lin's guilt... so, here was the selfie.


Of course, a selfie with my co-actor was necessary.  Introducing Andrew Lua, Fly Entertainment artiste.  Google his name and you would see that he is a very accomplished stage actor who also acts in movies, Channel 5 drama series and does TV commercials.  He is a familiar face in many starhub TVCs cos he could portray different emotions, especially comical facial expressions very well.


Filming continued after the make-up was done on Madeline by our pretty Director, Lingual and the man behind the lens, James, while I took a break and snapped photos behind the scene.



There would be periods when we would be free during filming and these are the mildly crazy things which we did... making funny faces and taking photos while the rest were doing filming.


I love Madeline's facial expression.  So damn real.




A photo with Bobby who helped out at the set as he had done some short films before.  That was Andrew trying to photobombed our photo from behind... lol.


This is Angel, who assisted Lingual and doubled up as the old woman who was pushing the trolley in two of the scenes.  I really salute the makeup artiste cos Angel was transformed from a young lady to an old woman with her magical touch, in no time.


We started filming since 2pm that day and by the time we finished some of the major scenes, it was already around 9-10pm.  Everyone was tired but we were happy cos things went smoothly without much hiccup.  Dylan was caught on my camera yawning... lol.


This was not done by us but it was already on the wall at the area where we did the filming for most of the scenes.  Looking at the photo again, I could feel my goosebumps coming up already.


Photo courtesy of Andrew.  Scary right? I looked like a ghost from behind.


Photo by Andrew.  Taken when I was filming the scene where I was chased by the 'ghost'.  okie, I think I looked more like a ghost here... lol.


The crew wanted to create resistance while I was running so I was tied to a string while Bobby pulled from behind.



Once we were done with the scenes, we moved on to the next location.


This was how the whole place looked like.  No one was staying in any of the flats. Guess where?




We continued filming till the next day around 7am, as we wanted to finish up all the scenes where the ghost appeared.

Lingual, James, Angel, Bobby and I met on another day after Lingual flew back to Singapore to shoot a scene whereby Zhi Lin walked out of a temple after praying.


Filming the scene whereby Zhi Lin was walking along the corridor.


We arranged for another separate day to capture a scene so that there was a continuation of sequences.  We have the pretty Lingual, the smart Bobby, the talented Eric and the cute Careen from left to right.  Look at how focused they were.  We all wanted to give our best for this film.


After all the scenes were shot, we moved over to Eric's studio to do sound recording.  Eric and Careen are the founder's of United Records.  Check out the website at www.unitedrecords.sg to find out more.

This was my first time doing sound recording.  Wondering how it would be like.  Luckily Andrew did his recording first, so I just relaxed at a corner, observing what I needed to do later.




Eric busy checking and editing the sound recordings while I took a selfie.


ok, my turn to go into the room alone to do the sound recordings.



The great people behind the scenes, editing the sound recordings and matching them to the scenes.


Poor Careen was so tired that she ended up sleeping on the floor. (btw, I didn't take the photos of you sleeping...not me, but...)



The good looking crew who worked so hard and late into the night to get the final product up for submission.



The Wrap Party

How can we not have a wrap party to celebrate the successful completion of the entire filming... Lingual and her mum prepared a crab feast and steamboat for all of us.  Thank you!


Photo taking time with this awesome team!



We took a look at the film which was submitted for the competition, but there was something wrong with the sound output from the TV hence the two talented guys, Bobby and Eric, went to the rescue.



And yes, the problem got sorted out and we managed to watch the short film with the magnificent sound effects.


And after all our hard work and effort, the film got into Top 10... Yippee!  Even if it didn't win Top 3, we were all very proud of this accomplishment.

Movie Makers 我要当导演 2015 Award Ceremony

The results was announced at the Movie Makers 我要当导演 2015 award ceremony on 3rd Nov 2015.  A photo of us infront of the photo wall.

This competition was organised by mm2 Entertainment, Fox International Channels and 衛視電視台.  It was presented by Canon, sponsored by Starhub and supported by Liquid Advertising and ViviThree.  

Movie Makers is a short film competition to develop and groom new talents in the film industry.  Check out http://www.mm2moviemakers.com to find out more.


Did you see "Nightmare" on the photo wall? So proud of this production!





Featuring Lingual, Careen and Eric...


The two main pillars of the whole production. Without them, we won't have the short film "Nightmare".  Kudos to Lingual and Eric!


A lot of people attended the Award Ceremony that day, from people in the film industry to supporters of the Top 10 shortlisted films.





The award ceremony was held at Genesis Theatre located at Fusionopolis Level 5.  We went into the theatre at 4pm when the award ceremony officially started.


We were treated to snippets of photos of the Top 10 shortlisted films and I managed to take photos of "Nightmare" film.



The award started off with veteran actor, Chen Tian Wen, singing his very popular "Unbelievable" song.  He was good manz!






The host for that afternoon...




Speeches by important people who made the competition possible.



The first two awards are special mention awards and these are the winners.



The next performing artiste was Shigga Shay, a Singaporean hip hop artist, songwriter, director and music producer.






Appreciation plaque was given to Director Raymond Jiang who was one of the judges.  He was the Director of Café.Waiting.Love.  He was involved in close to 100 commercials and corporate works and had directed 3 documentaries and 2 films.



Eric Koh was also in the house!  He was also one of the judges in the panel.  I think most of you would know who is is as he was the first Singaporean to have his films invited to major film festivals, placing Singapore onto the International film map in 1995.




The other judges could not make it to the award ceremony but they took time off to shoot a video to encourage the budding directors and congratulate them for the good work done.




Now, for the most exciting of the award ceremony... announcement of 2nd and 1st runner-up.



The organiser wanted to create some suspense hence there was another guest performance by a Taiwanese award winning singer before the winner of the competition was announced.



And the top winner goes to.... Drum roll, please.........



A photo of all the winners on stage.



Although our short film didn't manage to win any awards, we were already happy that it was one of the Top 10 shortlisted amongst 50 plus films submitted for the competition.


My sincerest thanks to Eric, who gave me a chance to participate in this short film by private messaging me on Facebook and asked me to go for audition.  The sound effects which you added into the film increased the scary factor too.

To Lingual, thanks for taking a risk and selecting me as your lead actress in your short film even though I didn't have much acting experience to boast and coaching me on the various facial expressions, body language and emotions.

To Andrew, thanks for being a great co-actor and helped me, a novice actress, get into the scenes easily.

To James, thanks for taking the best angles of me so that I can appear not too bad looking on screen... lol.

To Careen, thanks for editing the colours and adding filters so that I can look even better.  Without you, I think I would look more like a ghost instead... hahaha!

To Bobby, thanks for the guidance and using your experiences to make the film even better.

Also without Dylan, Angel, Madeline, Veroy and the makeup artistes and a lot of other people, this film wouldn't be possible.

I could have never imagined myself being able to act as a lead actress one day. Thanks all for making this come true!

Let's work together on another short film again!  

Any companies or individuals out there want to sponsor the making of a movie? Let us know.  Drop me an email at elaine@elaineheng.com.

Love,
Elaine


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