Ben Carland | Director/Filmmaker

Ben Carland | Director/Filmmaker

Official (and personal) website for the filmmaker Ben Carland.

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"Survive" - Week 1

Week 1 of production on SURVIVE is in the can. A few frame grabs below :)

Boston Sci-Fi

SHADOWS ON THE WALL will be screening at the Boston Sci-Fi Film Festival this year. It's an awesome festival for anyone considering going - tons of cool films - you should check it out! Now let the fun begin :)  


SOTW = Wrapped

Everything's in, everything's done, everything's awesome. SHADOWS ON THE WALL is officially wrapped and completed and I can't wait to share it with everyone. We're having a private screening to celebrate and check it out on the big screen before sending it out into the world. Thanks again to the last minute post help that came on to help get this film out the door so beautifully.  

Now the fun part begins!


Sprinting a Marathon

It's September now? Wait, it's almost October now? Where did that long weekend lovingly known as "late summer" disappear to?! Damn if it hasn't been the busiest summer ever! So many awesome things all came flying down the pipe at once this year. So Shadows should have technically been done by now but a few last minute post hiccups sprung out of the bushes and have delayed things a bit. It's been an interesting test of patience (as I'm the least patient person I can think of) to get through all of these speed bumps in a way that's best for the movie rather than best for my short attention span. Even though a few weeks of delay here and there quickly piles up to give me gray hairs and make me drink, it ultimately means very little in the bigger picture, and whatever results in the best final film should always win out because that's all that viewers will see and that's all that will love on.  The rest is just beer bottles that need to be recycled.

Things are largely down to the last looks and the remaining elements are just finishing touches on mixes and dialogue works and a few misc pickup shots. Hoping to have it all come together in a couple weeks! In the meantime, here are a couple fun photos that were snapped during principal cast ADR earlier this summer.






Finish(ing) Line Pt2

So it's summer now, apparently. May just flew by in a whirlwind of travel, ADR and VFX. ADR for SHADOWS went fantastic (thanks, cast and crew!) and is now being prepped for the final mix of the film. VFX have taken a bit longer than expected but there's been a lot more DIY R&D involved as well as some additional shots to add to the fun. It's been kind of startling to see how much software has improved since the last time I dealt with this much workflow (Sol in 2011). Elements that once gave me nightmares to deal with are now surprisingly easy - and dare I say - fun to work on. Motion tracking in particular used to be the bane of my existence but now it's so straightforward and efficient that it's kind of cathartic. Almost like solving math equations in school that you know you know how to solve. (Yes I said that and yes I must be a nerd.)

Color correction for the film has also been surprisingly smooth. Technical bugs that have plagued me on other projects have been few and far between on SHADOWS. I feel like most software might actually be to the point where workflows actually work for rather than against filmmakers. Almost all my time on Shadows has been spent addressing creative choices rather than bugs and that's fantastic. Let's hope that's a trend that continues!

Anyway, VFX for SHADOWS are about 85% completed and color correction at 95%. Once that's all set I can start diving into the final music and sound design mixes. The big hurdles are all done - now it's just a matter of dealing with the devils in the details. (A few frame grabs from coloring and VFX below.)





Finish(ing) Line

Whew! It has been a long haul on post for SHADOWS - so much to do and so many other fun projects in need of attention - but we're finally closing in on the finish line. Color correction has just wrapped, sound design is coming in hot, and VFX are currently coming in for landing. The last piece of the puzzle will be principle cast ADR, which we'll be knocking out in a couple weeks. Thanks so much to everyone involved in post for all your diligence and creativity. Now let's get back to work :)

Locking Shadows

Very pleased to announce that my film SHADOWS ON THE WALL picture locked this week. That's especially exciting for me because editing for this film has been a pretty long process - both creatively and technically. It was tough creatively because (as with any large project) there were mountains and mountains of footage to sort through and I was so pleased with what we got that picking favorites over other moments and performances - that will stay on the cutting floor - was kind of exhausting. But on the bright side that means there was lots of fantastic content to pick favorites over, so that makes this the weakest complaint in the history of ever... The process was a technical adventure (I'm nerd enough that I can use the words "technical" and "adventure" in the same sentence) because this was the first substantial project that I have posted using Adobe's new-ish Creative Cloud platform. I had been a devout Final Cut fan until a year or so ago and only recently dove in to using Adobe for everything. I had done tons of smaller projects with Adobe but this much data and resolution presented quite a bit of trial and error in terms of workflow. Anyway, having sorted that all out now, I am tremendously pleased with the outcome. The film is right at the runtime I was aiming for (~1h45m) and color correction is coming along great. Next stop, spotting with composer Alex Davis for the score!