Shooting a Film in Cold Chicago

Shooting a Film in Cold Chicago

Another production is over! Finally, I was able to finish two days of shooting my short film titled “Keys” which I mentioned about in my previous blog. It was the first time that I used a jib in a film I shot. It was so stressful but so exciting at the same time!

The first day of my production was on Friday, February 16th. I asked to have the day off for that day from my reception desk work. I had 3 different locations for a 5 minute film. It was definitely a challenge but I am so glad that we were able to make it as a team. I was going to be shooting on a street, in my apartment, and in a pizza parlor which they allowed us to be there only for four hours but for free. On Friday, we shot all the street scenes including the two shots with a jib.

1st AC next to the jib.

It feels great to know that we have the opportunity to use all the equipment without spending anything. And it is also great to work with people who are really passionate about what they do. That is one of the best things about Columbia College Chicago.

After giving a break for a day, we started shooting the apartment scenes on Sunday, February 18th. The location was my apartment. So, I woke up in the morning and tried to arrange my bed and my desk. Then the crew started to come. My DP came 30 minutes earlier so she could start setting up the camera to save time. It felt bad but great at the same time to see my apartment in that mess. One of the production design professors mentioned in one of our seminars that you will only shoot a film in your apartment once. He is probably right. I am still trying to get everything back to their places.

My apartment from the set of ‘Keys’.


And that’s a wrap!

While I have been trying to get everything together for “Keys” I had to go out and take photographs for my elective class, Image Design for Cinema. My classmate Neva and I went to downtown Chicago and tried to find visually interesting places to take photos.

One of the photos of Neva that I took for Image Design for Cinema class.

When planning to shoot a film with exterior scenes you always have to think about the weather. But in Chicago, the cold is real. You always must keep the weather in mind, otherwise you might face some real challenges. I was lucky that when I was shooting it was not raining or snowing. But it was cold enough that we had to take breaks to warm up. Also, using hand warmers helped us too.

Bicycles trying to survive the cold in an alley way.


A nice view from a balcony.

Now the next film is on its way. I have already started working on the adaptation project that I will be shooting, titled “Her Voice.” I am waiting to write more about it on the next blog!