EXHALATION shoot day 2

Early in the morning, when I returned to the location for the shoot of my new film, EXHALATION, it struck me that i was going through the last few days of 2009.

It was rather apt that, in a year which I would consider a breakthrough for my filmmaking career, I would end it while making a film.


As my team started setting up dolly tracks in the forest for the first scene of the day, I felt slightly overwhelmed by the scope of the production.

I've actually never seen real dolly tracks like that before. 3 years ago in my student film at Perth, GIRL DISCONNECTED, I used PVC pipes as tracks. It was the same earlier this year in Ming Jin's WOMAN ON FIRE LOOKS FOR WATER, (which we used sparingly because the PVC pipes weren't even).

Then they were setting up the jib arm too, it was something I've definitely never used in any of my previous films before.

In fact, when all these while my filmmaking was about maximizing limited resources, it was hard not to feel bowled over by the sudden increase of possibilities opened up before me. And to think that I initially visualized the scene as handheld herky jerky shots because, I underestimated the resources that I had for the shoot!

In the second photo below, where I was pondering in a very ponderous manner while the team was setting up. I was actually thinking: "Wow, dolly, jib arm... what am I actually gonna do with them? Wow! Stay cool, stay cool, stay cool!"

Me setting up a shot in the forest

I wondered what to do with a jib arm


The shoot lasted til the night.

Shooting a scene in an abandoned building

In a discussion with my main actresses and producer


And in the end, the toughest parts of the filming were done. It was pretty dark at night and I couldn't even see some of the team members posing for me when I took the photo.

the EXHALATION film crew after a long night shoot


It is 10:54 am now. The next shooting location is Shibuya. Gathering time is 3:30pm. Today I shoot the beginning and ending of the film, and a few short scenes. And then it'll be over. Can't say that I'm not excited!