Keegan's Production MEGATHREAD!!

Hello guys! Me again!
I've been uploading a ton of content and realized it was stupid to keep making new threads that just clutter the forum. So, from now on, I'll be posting everything to this thread! As always, criticism is greatly appreciated and it really does a lot to help me get better!
To start things off, I made a sort of spoof on the last scene from Independence Day with a bunch of plane models I got from VideoCopilot's Jetstrike!
Here is the VFX breakdown! I used a combination of 3Ds Max, After Effects and Hitfilm: Ultimate to achieve the final output!

Up Next: 
-Zombie Miniseries
-The Link: Act II
-Carpe Ludos Trailer


  • That was fun! Did you intend for the dialog track to be missing? I mean, I could lip-read, "I don't have any missles," but... M
  • edited September 2014
    :excl:  :excl:  :excl: 
    You're the second person to say the dialog was really low/missing. My buddy was listening on a Macbook Pro. I troubleshot it on my phone, my PC, my laptop, a tablet and around 5 macs at school and it was fine across the board. The dialog tracks are all mono this time so I don't think phase distortion could even be an issue. MYSTERY!!!    
  • Nice one - that was hilarious :) Loved Andreas casually pulling in with his plane. How long did it take you to put this together? 
    Btw - I didn't get any of the audio issues - I heard "I don't have any missiles" loud and clear - no lip reading necessary. How very odd!
  • Fun video! No issues with sound here either.
  • Okay, I finally got the go-ahead to post these!
    I work at my University and I was charged with writing a three-part web-series to promote our zombie event that we held this fall. They had a story in mind and I wrote the screenplay, directed and edited the whole thing. It was a challenge to make a compelling zombie video with limited violence and/or gore, as it had to be school-appropriate. What resulted was, in my opinion, pretty decent and I found it kind of fun to work under very limiting restrictions. Let me know what you think!
  • edited September 2014
    "..... perhaps we can prevent the humans from turning." Did I hear that line correctly?
    Outlast the Outbreak- Nice and suspenseful despite the limitations you had to work with. I expected the wife to come down from above and kept thinking- look up! look up! which was it's not predictable.
    As to the line I referenced above: since part 1 wasn't included or I missed it somewhere else, are the two other 'scientists' alien? Usually you only hear humans being refered to as humans by aliens- that's the only reason I ask.
    Loved the virtual tour! I can relate to the self deprecating humor.
    Keep up the great work! Kent State should be proud to have a student with such excellent talent.
  • Nice :) 
    Part I: Really good set up, made me want to watch more.
    Part II: It did make me laugh when the guy clearly tried to open a locked door in Part II, and you quickly cut to another scene. Just not quite quick enough :P Also, I think it would have made more sense during the scene where he goes into the holding cell to check on her, if you had shown an empty bed. Rationally, that's where his torch would have gone first as that's where he's expecting to see her - the torch shining on the walls seemed a little pointless in comparison. Loved the attack at the end though!
    Part III: Laughed again when the water clearly missed the guy and hit the wall :) Just little details like that briefly interrupt my immersion in the film as it looks wrong. The visual impact of all the zombies coming over the hill was a really nice place to end it. 
    Overall, I really enjoyed them and think you worked well within your limitations. Just the couple of things I pointed out which stood out to me as odd :) Hope they help!
  • Wow, thanks guys!

    Stormy: Now that you mention it, that line doesn't really make sense. I'm not sure why we had her call them "humans" instead of "us", but she was basically saying the serum stopped our poor scientist from becoming a zombie, even though it failed to bring his wife back. 

    Hahaha, A lot of these problems have a funny story behind them! The door was bad cutting on my part, but the lack of a bed when he enters the cell with the flashlight was because someone else needed it upstairs. Since we are lowly marketing staff, we had no choice but to give up our only table! 

    The bucket of water was one of those moments where we had 10 minutes before Jesse (The "spalshed-on" scientist) had to leave, so we only had one shot at him. The actress with the bucket was consistently underperforming and undercommiting during the entire two day shoot (Showing up late, not knowing lines, hadn't read the script, etc.) We practiced a few dozen times and when it came down to it, she hesitated and missed. As soon as I called cut EVERYONE on set cried out in dispair The actress turns and says "You can 'CG' that, right?" 

    It was definitely a good learning experience though, that's for sure! 


    Next up:

    -The Link: Act II


  • Oh wow - that is hilarious :) 
    I LOVE that you had to give away your only bed. And that actress sounds APPALLING :) But, like you said it's all a learning experience and you'll be sure not to do it next time - as well as having a funny story to go alongside it :)

  • Ok, finally got to watch this.

    Yup, that was well put together! I don't think "school limitations" hurt this project, really--you might have tossed in an "oh, $***" or something, and maybe the zombies would have been a little more gorey, but the basic storytelling of the piece worked, and I didn't miss the blood.

    "You can CG that, right?!" Why, Yes, I could add some stock water and do an adjustment layer to darken the back wall and do hours of roto to mask the actor and it wouldn't matter because you MISSED and he's DRY! *facepalm*

    I felt really bad for the scientist trying to save his wife: "You FUBAR'd. Here's your baseball bat and your suicide mission."

    I'm a bad, bad, human being because I really want to see a scene where a scientist walks up to a zombie and puts a flower in it's mouth, and yes, I DID just make a "Kent State Massacre" joke. I'm a bad, bad human being.

  • edited September 2014

    Triem -  The picture actually wasn't taken at KSU, though it was from the same era, so no worries! You're in the clear! :p

    Anyway, here's my latest project, The Link: Act II

    I'm not sure if this really works as a film - I'll let you be the judge -  but it was a very interesting concept to work with. One of my actors vanished of the face of the earth and the other was spending a chunk of the summer in Africa. We ended up rewriting all of Act II as a result. My friend Brett and I are super close and we work really well together creatively, so I kind of wrote Act II with him and I in mind because I knew we could get everything in one or two takes. So the vision of a serious of long one-takes on a head-mounted camera was born and, though it may not fit the style or tone of the series so far, was a hell of a lot of fun to make. Would I do it again? Probably not. Does it work? Probably not. I just hope someone has half as much fun watching it as we did making it!

    Now my plate is clear and I can move on to two original projects!Hints:



  • This works. Since you changed character viewpoints in Act II, the change in style to the POV camera is justified and it gives a nice changeup in look from the Prolog and Act I. Especially since Act II is basically a rescue of the character captured at the end of Act I.

    Nice work on the compositing! I know using a Go-Pro adds the additional challenge of mirroring that fisheye lens and you did a really nice job on that.

    Of course, we STILL don't have any idea of what The Link is, but that's fine--keep a little mystery going, right?

    SInce you have this new MEGATHREAD, may I recommend reposting the Prolog and Act I in this thread so anyone who's missed (or wants to rewatch) the earlier parts don't have to go searching the Movie Wall or for your other threads?

    I have two nits on The Link Act II--One of which I think I said about Act I, but I repeat it here: I think your weapons could use a touch of paint or distressing on them--right now they're lookin a bit two clean an plastic--especially as in Act II we're getting long close-ups of weapons in the center of the screen--of course, this is sci-fi, so you can always say weapons of the future are made of a high-tech polycarbonate...

    Second one is minor--you did a nice job throughout the film of updating the "Vitals" section of the HUD, but, atthe end when Coyote makes his final status report, the his "Vitals" are "Stable" after removing the camera, instead of "No Vitals Detected."

    Anyhoo--well done, and looking forward to Act III.

  • Triem - I actually just painted my guns a couple days ago, so funny you shoulod metion that!! I thik they look way better now! Also, you're totally right about the Heads Up Display at the end. That's going to bother me forever now xDD

    Also, good idea about posting the other two. Ideally I'd just add it to my old posts but it seems as though we can't edit posts older than an hour, so I'll just post the other two here:

  • Hey! Last post for a while! My school finally released the last episode of a webseries I helped Direct/DP this past spring. I contributed to almost every episode. However, the final one, Episode 6, is where I finally got a director's credit. My friend Josh and I DP'd the entire series and I scored the entire series as well. It's the last episode, so it might not make much sense out-of-context, but I'm pretty happy with how the editors handled everything! Let me know what you think!

  • edited October 2014

    I got about 10 minutes in and thought about what you said regarding context. So I quit watching and I'm going to have to start with episode 1. Glad they're all posted on youtube.

    From what I did see though, I like how you utilize the things around you to come up with creative and interesting shots.....especially when they're talking outside and they're backlit. Very nice. The scene when (don't know the names yet) the guy with the gun gets dragged away cracked me up. Sorry- it just looked a little awkward on the part of the actors.

    So I'm off to start at the beginning and I'll get back to you. I work two jobs so it might take a couple days.

    Also- is there more to The Link? You've peaked my curiosity.

  • edited October 2014

    Now that I've seen the whole series, part 6 makes more sense.

    The only critiques/suggestions I have- the sound wasn't always consistent. Some of it was due to the setting where there was more reverb in an area like big empty hallways. In a few spots throughout, the levels were a little too low so I had to backup and raise the volume to catch a line or two. The camera work was well done and the scenes well thought out. You guys had some creative ideas from where to to shoot a scene i.e. I presume some of the bridge scenes (at the end) were filmed from the river bank(?). The actors got better from beginning to end- perhaps they were getting comfortable in their roles.

    I know you had a lot on your plate but I could see a few more scenes with music to add tension; even if it's the same piece of music used in a couple of places. The music you did score fit in well with the mood of the scenes in which they were used though.

    The only other thing is- there seems to be no explaination/reason as to how Austin ends up in the past for that second time around. I was hoping by the end that detail would have been covered. Was it devine intervention? Hitting his head? Bolt of lightning? An angel named Clarence?  ;^) I know you didn't write the story but I would have started with the altercation in the bathroom, have Austin get clocked upside the head, recover after a few minutes and pick up where the story does now. That way the audience would see two different versions of the bathroom scene to validate the time line alteration and give a reason for why Austin might have gone back in time. But that's just me. I did like the switching of places from beginning to end between Austin and Autumn on the bridge.

    In any case, I enjoyed the series and would give it a solid four out of five stars. *applause, applause, applause* Y'all did a great job!



  • Stormy-

    Wow! Thanks for checking it out! A ton of people put a lot of effort in to make it possible! I pretty much agree with everything you said, and we were changing writers/directors every episode, so the storytelling wasn't very consistent, in my opinion. 


    I loved Resident Evil as a kid and, though we grew apart after the amazing climax some call "Resident Evil 4", I still have fond memories of playing Shinji's games with my dad. When I heard about BETHESDA *air horn* teaming up with SHINJI MIKAMI *air horn*, I was PUMPED!!! So we made this:


    -How do you organize a large crew/cast of skins with no producers?

    -Working with only 3 lights in total blackness.

    -Teach the youngin's while maintaining a good shooting pace? (We went an hour over ).

    -Work efficiently with 3 experienced crewmembers (Myself, Sound and DP) and about 8 inexperienced crewmembers (Grips, wardrobe, etc.)


    Side note: If the main character looks familiar, he has played parts on movies such as Captain America 2, Cleanland and With This Ring.



  • Ooooh @Keegan I really liked this latest one :)
    The monsters to me looked like little stars all wrapped up in crispy zombie skin. I have to admit the first time the woman jumped out at him, my heart did a little bit of a skip.

    The only criticism I'd really have of this is that it's a little too dark in a few places. I see you've said that you worked with only 3 lights in total blackness, which would explain it. Unfortunately when you're trying to build tension in a dark room, it's obvious that it needs to be as dark as possible, but getting a little more detail on some of those scenes would help. For example, when the character comes up the stairs (after the boom, boom, boom of their steps) and the protagonist is hiding, there is a sound effect which indicated to me that the hunter was standing somewhere close, but actually I couldn't see anything. Even looking back and trying to find some legs/feet, I still can't see any against the background.
    In that particular instance it would have been best to find some way to add some light (be it a lamp or light streaming in to the room from a door) so that we could see the legs and be frightened by them.

    Otherwise - nice job :) Hope the kids working with you learnt a lot!  

  • Well, now I've got the heebie-jeebies! And in broad daylight!!!

    Nicely done, Keegan! I agree with Kirstie, there are a few dark spots but overall it's really well done. My only critique would be the blood splats might have been a little light and not exremely random looking- although I suspect it's harder to do with fx than a conventional method.

    How did you get the 'eyes' effect?

  • Kirstie- I'm glad it was somewhat scary! After looking at it so many times, I couldn't tell at all if it was still scary! 

    Our lighting situation was pretty rough and the t2i doesn't handle low light very well, so we were at a bit of a loss, unfortunately :\

    Stormy- By 'blood splats', do you mean the vfx "squibs" or the blood markings on the walls/floor?

    The eyes were simple, but tedious! I hand tracked a light flare to each eyeball! For the ghosties who were too blurred to see each eye:

    -Used the tracker to track their head OR I just hand tracked their head.

    -Applied that data to a point layer.

    .-I made two new point layers and placed them where the eyes would probably be.

    -Parented the two new points to the original tracking data.

    -Had the lens flare parented to each point. 

    DONE! :)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Nice work, Keegs! All of your shorts maintain quality storytelling and nicely motivated camera moves.

    I think Stormy is referring to the VFX "squibs." Digital blood just never looks right, whether it's an indy short or a Hollywood blockbuster. Probably because it always just dissapates to nothing before hitting the floor. I understand WHY it's become so popular, but, yeah, practical blood still looks way better.

    What software do you have besides Hitfilm? I'm thinking Neat Video would do a nice job of cleaning up some of the grain in your shot--Neat Video really works wonders once you get good with it--which doesn't take long at all! But Neat Video doesn't exist in a stand alone version, so you have to hook it into a host: Premiere, Vegas, AE, VirtualDub, Resolve, Avid, Nuke, Fusion, FCP, etc...

  •  T23 is right- I meant squibs.

    Good job on the eyes. They were tracked well enough for me to wonder how you did it. Kudos!

  • Triem - I actually used Neatvideo extensively in this project! If you think the footage looks grainy now, you should have seen it before. It was borderline unusable. The mixture of not enough lights and the t2i having terrible light sensitivity (even at f/1.8) just destroyed some of those shots. Maybe I should do one of those roughcut/final cut split screen videos!

    I'd like to get more into squibs but that jsut requires so much more time! 



  • And we're back. Grab the tissues and pack a lunch, because today we're going on a FEELS TRIP.

    One of my co-workers on the marketing team does an annual charity for a local children's hospital. He and I teamed up to make this cool, 'one-take' lip dub video. The kids were amazing and it was actually extremely heart-warming to see them all so happy and excited!

    And, of course, I had to have some fun with 3D tracked text! :p

  • Hey guys! Last post for a while! I'm about to start production for two more projects, as well as going into preproduction for a feature-film this summer!

    I'll leave you with this parody trailer I did about the American reaction to the Ebola outbreak.  Tons of fun and very quick!

  • edited November 2014

    @Keegan- the video with the kids was done really well! It looks like everyone had a great time too. Not nice to make me tear up at work though.  

    Shouldn't I be scared if the ebola virus is really that huge?!?!?!?!?! 


  • @StormyKnight Thanks man! We made the local news! I always love helping out a good cause.

    Now for our newest video, which is an entry to the @RodyPolis film competition. For those of you who remember the early days of the Hitfilm Forums/Movie Wall, you might remember my terrible Mr. Claws and Pumpkin Man short films. My friends have been telling me to make a new one all year, so I finally caved when Rody announced his contest. Hopefully it makes sense xD

  • edited December 2014

    "I'll be jingled" - "I am all kinds of confused" lololol

    Love it! Nice job with the elf voices too!

    So how did you make the news on the other vid? That's pretty cool!!!

  • Most Excellent, Keegan and crew! 

    (Sam gets shot in the back by his friends . . . hmm)

  • Thanks, guys! I'm glad my weird sense of humor wasn't lost on you 

    The Hospital shared the video like crazy so it went mini-viral in our area. The local news picked up on it and did a little segment, playing the video on-air! 

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