Monday, 21 January 2008


In order to somewhat polish off the narrative arc begun in the last post below, I thought, what the hell... so I digitised up the epic that is DoubleCross as well. I've got to admit, for me watching back all the outtakes (that no-one will ever see... well, not for a while anyway) has actually been the fun bit - not so much a trip down memory lane as a cruise along recollection road in a battle tank constructed of things I'd blanked from my consciousness.

DoubleCross began life... actually, it's probably more relevant to pick up the story where we left off with Discarded. [Still with me? You really should try getting out more. Anyway.] If you haven't read the bit from last time, scroll down and do so now. We'll wait until you're done.

SO... despite the lack of a narrative or any real skill whatsoever, Discarded did actually start something. The following summer, after several nights in a row spent immersed in film (regularly racking up five a night, stats fans... it was reckoned at the time that we watched at least 30 more during the course of making DC, which probably explained the number of script changes to incorporate swiped lines) I sat down and hacked out a script called Blown Away. The expletive-laden draft read somewhere between Snatch and Mallrats. Either way, it was pretty much unfilmable. I blame the rage on the fact that I did most of the writing whilst waiting for Russ to wake up in the morning, regardless of how many objects were hurled at him.

So we took it, and I started rewriting. I'd write a few pages, and we'd work out how to film it. The other two 'actors' Matthew and Martin, were roped in pretty early on - Russ subsequently used them both in legitimate short films over the next few years: Matthew's now something of a cult figure, I suppose.

Anyway, long story short, it turned out pretty great.

a) The police car at the start is, as previously hinted, a real police car. The Gardai resided across the road, and the local sergeant was usually warned before Russ started blowing things up to avoid any confusion. However, someone further up the street rang in to complain that some young hooligan was sprinting down the road with what appeared to be a handgun, and they came around just to make sure. Russ decided to leave the camera running to see what would happen, and got the perfect shot. It's pretty hilarious with the original audio. ("Howya lads... what's going on today then?" "Ah, howya Pat...")

b) The sound dips a lot in the YouTube cut for the obvious reason. Didn't want anyone to be offended.

c) The narrative is actually pretty understandable. There's a bit of a dip in quality in the middle, as some of the dialogue seems to have been swept behind Bob Marley at one point. A great pity if you're a fan of wordplay.

d) As in all productions, Puddles appears. Spot for a prize.

e) Early on, it was decided that for the look of the thing, we would film at the "Magic Hour" every day to try and get that really soft lighting as the sun goes down. It meant we could only really film for an hour and a half each day, and made rehearsals a mad panic. And we did rehearse!

f) The shoot out at the end was meant to have flash-and-smoke added, but we ran out of time in the edit - so it looks a bit wick.

g) Check out the irony in the "No Dumping" sign just at the end. Genius.

h) The graveyard featured is the same graveyard mentioned in another famed tale of decadence from this stable; it will however, not be discussed here.

So without further ado, ladies and gents... the two-parter that is DoubleCross

If you aren't sure about any of the storyline, check out this (old) synopsis.

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