Reel World: “The Drop” shot on the T2i

We met Erik Parise from Arise Productions at the Vimeo Festival and got to talk to him a little bit about one of his recent projects, “The Drop.” When we first watched it we were totally impressed by the quality so decided to do a little q+a.

q. Can you tell me a little bit more about how this was shot?

a. It was shot with a Rebel T2i using a 50mm F1.8 for the close up shots and 18-55mm IS for full body shots. We used blue screen, lowel lighting kit and a 5 in 1 reflector.

q. Was this all done in After Effects?

a. About 85% was done in AE CS3 and 15% in Final Cut Pro. The audio was already mixed so I used the audio during the shoot and synced up all blue screen footage in Final Cut with pluraleyes. Then, I placed it in After Effects and created everything in there from the planet to the interior of the ship. The interior of the ship really bogged down the memory. I need CS5 🙂 I used Digital Juice’s Motion Designers Toolkit 2 for the interfaces and then enhanced the look making it a fiery glowing orange since the characters were part of the “Flame.” I also used Video Copilot’s Optical Flares and integrated multiple flares at the same time to give it a different look. Once I had each shot completed I pieced them all together in FCP.

q. How long did it take to finalize the piece?

a. 3 Hours for Storyboarding, 6 Hours on the set, 45+ hours in post. It was shot on Sunday 9/12 starting at 3pm and it was completed on 9/16 at 2:45am. I didn’t get much sleep that week.

q. In the vimeo description it says they are beginning their journey so is there more in the works?

a. Yes there is more! It’s part of an interactive drama that was done at a youth conference in New Albany/Johnstown, Ohio called Fire&Ice on 9/17-18. It went over so well that the encore for the drama is on Oct. 29th at 7:30pm at the Now Center 2407 Beech Rd. Johnstown, OH 43031. When the drop video ends there is a loud boom, the lights come up and the characters are on the stage with dry ice underneath their feet. There are four chapters to the drama and each chapter has some video in them. In Chapter Two, (On Stage) one grey catalyst finds another catalyst locked in the “freeze.” In order to help he must get into their mind. He then places his hand on their head and the scene then fades to black a video then fades up of what he sees inside her mind. That video will release on vimeo after Oct. 29th since we didn’t want it to take away from a first time experience for someone coming to the performance. I have been talking with the writer Tom Keesee and there is a very good possibility of turning the four chapters into a film.


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3 replies
  1. Amy Freudiger
    Amy Freudiger says:

    I was at these performances, and everyone was utterly shocked and amazed not only at the incredible drama but at the unbelievable quality of these video segments. It felt as good as cinema quality, and better than a lot of the stuff I’ve seen in the cinemas, too! Great job Erik, Tom and the whole team who put this together. Amazing stuff.

    By the way, check out for other locations of this drama, dates being announced soon.

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