TWO SCENES FROM UNBROKEN
UNBROKEN – Hold of Ship
This was a seemingly simple scene that involved few shots and very little lighting but it was nevertheless quite challenging. First of all this was in the belly of a real ship at anchor in the harbor near Sydney, which created its own complications.
I wanted the scene to be lit as if by a narrow shaft of light percolating from far above. There was one small hatch and ladder leading down into the hold of the ship so this seemed the obvious place to light from. However, there was only a small space above the hatch in which to place any light source. So as not to have my light spill all over the set the solution was to create a false hatch that was set a little below the existing opening. In essence this created a sharper cut and a more pronounced ‘beam’ of light. What is not shown in the diagram is that the Joker was actually set on a rail so that the lamps could be moved back and forth by hand as if the ship were rolling.
UNBROKEN – Tokyo Restaurant
Another deceptively simple location shoot.
The problem we had here was that the ‘restaurant’ set was on the second floor of an empty Downtown Sydney building with a street outside. I wanted the restaurant to look very elegant and a marked contrast to the Omori Prison Camp.
The first decision I made was to diffuse all the windows and create my own soft light sources outside. The street or alley to one side of the set was quite narrow so the options were to either use a large array of small lamps to create a large soft source or to bounce larger units. I felt the bounce sources would look the best as I would need a less heavy diffusion on the windows to hide the rigs. The bounce would also be easier to control and would require less rigging.
I wanted the set to be lit from the windows and I was not intending to use any light sources inside the set. This was basically what happened and we walked in ready to shoot. We had a lot to shoot that day as the building also supplied an exterior and interior set for the Tokyo Radio Station. We wanted the exterior to be grey and wet and we got very lucky with the weather for that shot. When we moved into the Restaurant set the sun came out, which for a short time caused some unwanted lighting in one direction but didn’t slow down the shooting. The fact that I was using large bounce sources, to a degree, helped control the existing daylight as the Ultrabounce reflectors were set at an angle to the windows and acted as blocks to the sun. We shot on into the dusk and there still was little change in the quality of the light reaching the set.