Drama Mama

As part of her structured student internship programme, a final year student from the Diploma in Interactive Media Technology, Rennie Wee, was attached to Digital Blowfish Pte Ltd which produces corporate videos, movies and feature films.  Interesting though it sounds, it was not holiday.  She shares her experience…

During my Student Internship Programme (SIP), I consider myself fortunate to have got into a production company (Digital Blowfish Pte Ltd) which was working on a local feature film at that point of time.  Well, I guess it was a one in a million opportunity!  It was like working in a company that is somewhat like a mini “MM2 Entertainment”!

During my SIP, I was given the role of Assistant Producer (pre-production stage) where I got to work on script editing with the in-house writers and Mr Chow Wai Thong (a well-known local producer).  We worked closely to amend the script, character’s background build-up as well as the casting of suitable actors and actresses.  The whole process to me was pretty interesting!  It was a first that I got to meet and work with in-house writers and even the Producer!  We got to talk about how to make the script interesting and how to inject emotions into our script writing to make the actors and actresses understand what we were trying to portray.  Not only that, I was able to learn first-hand from the experts!  I guess, not everyone will be able to get this kind of experience right?

Having to produce a film from scratch, initially I felt a little nervous.  It was after all my first time doing this for real company (I had done simulations many times before during my diploma course), and in this case, the final product would be cast as a film for everyone to watch too!

However, I was afraid that I would make a mistake in the script writing and might pull the entire production down because of my inexperience.  But thankfully, my supervisors were really cool, and they backed me up whenever I was unsure of what to do, whenever I needed help! 

During my internship, I was also tasked to do a casting call – that is, a kind of interview whereby we meet potential members of the cast and select them based on a kind of mini audition.  During the interviews, I felt pretty excited yet nervous.  It was my first time doing a real-life casting!  I mean, usually we see these on YouTube videos for famous movies like “Ah Boys to Men” etc.  This time, I would be doing it for real!  I must say, it was pretty fun and I enjoyed it too.  The actors and actresses who came were really “into” the show and they also made me feel really comfortable working with them.

Director’s Personal Assistant (Production stage)
After my internship, I was invited to join them as a part-timer before school reopened.  My job was to serve as the Director’s Personal Assistant (PA).  Basically during the production stage, I was in-charge of the visuals and dialogue where I would be sitting in front of the monitor screen during the entire filming, keeping track of the dialogue, scene, camera angle, camera’s direction, and the director’s remarks.  I also recorded the tape log, and reviewed the recordings of 4K Raw footages.  There were so many things that I had to take note of!  I did not actually expect myself to be able to witness such a scene!  I usually only view these scenes on television or even YouTube, during the NGs of several movies or television drama.  But this time, I was actually seeing it happen live before my eyes!  With so many exciting things going on around me, and so much multi-tasking to be done, I had to remind myself to stay focused throughout!

Before every shoot, I would also be helping out with the scene set-up, scene discussion with our art director, and rehearsal with camera crew, while being in-charge of the wardrobe and make-up (to decide which outfit and make-up would be best for the talents, and for each particular scene).  It was sheer hard work, but after completing each task, I got a real sense of satisfaction.  And due to the shooting schedules, the need for retakes, as well as to meet interim deadlines, we had to push on even when we were all maxed out with fatigue!  And sometimes, we could only break for our meals like several hours after the official lunch or dinner time.

Despite the hard work and stresses, my internship was a really enriching experience.  I got a better understanding and knowledge of the various areas of Interactive Media.  The fact that I was able to work as a director’s PA for a real film shooting, despite being just as an intern, was amazing and mind blowing!  Everyone may think that interns only do “leftover jobs” or “sai kang”, but for me, I was assigned to do important jobs, and I am really thankful to my bosses for showing their faith in me.  I am glad to have had this chance to experience the real working life and come out with a real production film.  I am thankful for all the guidance given by our director, art director, creative director, executive producer and all the seniors and writers at the company.  Even though the working environment in film production may be tense and quite stressful, I must say it was definitely a fruitful and great experience for me!

(To view my works, click here:  http://awe-inspiring.wix.com/renw )

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