(Click on images for more Information
and Production Stills.)
Shuttle LLC wrapped it's feature "Shuttle" with a night of special effects (for details click on the bottom picture at left). Producer Mark Donadio turned to ScreenLight & Grip to
not only provide the gear to light Marginal Street in Chelsea for this complicated chroma key effects shot, but also to
provide the gear for the entire seven week shoot.
"One of our biggest challenges on this show" explains Rigging Gaffer Guy Holt (who is also the
owner of ScreenLight & Grip)"was to light the talent on the constantly moving shuttle bus." The task was complicated by the fact that most of the film
takes place on the shuttle at night and the bus was too big to put on a process trailer. Gaffer Mike Dynice figured he could get away with lighting
the talent with little more than Kino Flo Flourescent fixtures because the shuttle sequences were being shot with the extremely
light sensitive Viper Film Stream High Definition Camera (click on the 1st picture at left for details). He replaced the interior lights of the bus with
8 - 4’ T12 Kino 3200K Tubes, powered on individual channels, split out from 4 - 4 bank AC Ballasts located in the back
of the bus. The extra 8 channels were used to power 2' single tubes used as close-up modeling lights for talent inside the bus and
4’- 4 Bank Fixtures rigged outside the windows. To rig lights outside, Key Grip Mike Henry built an exo-skeletal frame
of pipe around the bus (click on the 4th picture at left for details).
The question was how to supply that much AC power when the shuttle was constantly moving? Towing a generator was out of the question because the scenes on the
shuttle involved too much dialogue to overdub. Instead, Rigging Gaffer Guy Holt built
an 1800W “Batt-Verter” rig to provide silent AC power to the lights. To maximize the running time on the batteries, he tied the
Marine Cells into the engine’s alternator, as well as an AC charger (for when shore power was available), so that the
batteries would receive a charge as they were being discharged. “Even when the shooters drove all night, never giving
us a chance to plug in the AC charger, the rig worked so well on the engine alternator alone that the batteries never ran down” boasts Guy Holt
(click on the 3rd picture at left for details).
To light locations that included the Worcester Airport and numerous city streets,
ScreenLight and Grip provided a feature style 12-Ton Pkg. (click on the 1st picture at left for details).
“This film was something of a maiden voyage for our new electrics truck”, explains Guy Holt. "Though, it was christened, so to
speak, at Constitution Wharf on a the PBS show Electronic Field Trip, our electrics truck
was really designed for
HD Features like "Shuttle" - it is the first HD compatible Electrics Truck
that I know of,” explains Guy Holt (click on the 2nd picture at left for details).
As the producers of "Shuttle" found, ScreenLight and Grip can make a substantial contribution to film and television
productions shooting in New England. In addition to equipment rentals, they can provide crews and services, as well as
expedite the processing of the valuable tax credits now being offered by many New England States (click on 1st picture
at left for details). They use their expertise and extensive knowledge of the region to maximize the benefits that
New England has to offer. For more detailed information on what they have to offer, or the Massachusetts Motion Picture
Production Tax Credits, log onto their website or call them at (781) 326-5088.