Wired recently interviewed Shane Meadows, the British film-maker, about shooting his new project named Le Donk in only five days. Meadows hopes the short shooting schedule will enable the film to focus on more minute details of the story and force the production team to come up with crazier ideas. Meadows teamed up with Warp Films producer, Mark Herbert for this project and they are looking to create a “5-Day-Feature” manifesto that encourages anyone to submit their movie for professional distribution.
This particular ode to spontaneous film-making follows burgeoning British rapper, Le Donk, on his quest to become a star. The loose script and tight schedule form an odd couple, but the film is already attracting attention of film festivals. Wired details the diary of the shoot:
Day One (Thursday)
Shooting Donk’s domestic life in Nottingham. Retired rapper Scorzayzee plays his lodger. Donk and Scorz head for Manchester in a clapped-out minibus. Shane winds Paddy up by telling him to sleep in the van and pay for his own meals.
Day Two (Friday)
Donk meets the roadies. Scorz is sent off with a camera to improvise his storyline. It’s better than the Donk stuff. An idea emerges to blag them onstage as a double act on Day Four, Sunday.
Day Three (Saturday)
The first gig. Shots of Donk and Scorz rehearsing backstage. Lights blow, sound fails. Everyone tired and pissed off.
Day Four (Sunday )
The sun shines. Producer Mark begs and bribes so that Donk and Scorz open tonight’s gig. It works! Donk sings, Scorz raps. The audience don’t know what’s hit them.
Day Five (shot a few months later )
The journey home in triumph. Scorz has a towel wrapped around his head for no apparent reason (he’s hiding the fact he shaved his head in the months between shooting). That’s a wrap – cheers!
Le Donk is scheduled to appear at Edinburgh’s International Film Festival on June 23rd, visit the website for more information. We will be curious to see if more “5-Day-Feature” projects catch on and how this semi-improvised technique turns out.