Wrapped OFFICE BET

I’ve been quiet in the blogosphere because I’ve been in hardcore pre-production on a short film called OFFICE BET that we shot on Monday 1/9 and Tuesday 1/10! First and foremost, I and Aaron (producer) want to thank the amazing cast and crew for all their hardwork!

OFFICE BET is a witty short film about the awkwardness of dating in the digital age told through the story of a two couples operating at very different connection speeds. One couple is “logged in” while the other totally unplugged, yet both find romance in this comedy in the vein of Albert Brooks and Noah Baumbach’s films.

We decided to make this film for a variety of reasons — because the script is fantastic; because I wanted to direct something narrative before directing my one-act play in UNSCREENED in Feb. (the Activia behind-the-scenes internet video doesn’t count as narrative!); because, possibly most excitingly, the OFFICE BET creative team is putting together a feature film of similar tone/themes. We wanted to make a short film together that can act as a proof of concept for both us as a team and the kind of feature we will produce.

I loved my crew and cast. Dominique came on to shoot with her great team (and a killer crane!!) and capture a VIRGIN SUICIDES-inspired look, complete with soft lighting, romantic flares, effortless-looking compositions, long lenses and floaty camera moves.

Dom in red. Technocrane in metal.

I had the opportunity to collaborate with new people like Ed, (pinch hitter UPM ’cause Gabe had to step away to another project) Caity (1st AD), Anatasya in wardrobe, and Sam on makeup/hair. Plus, I was so inspired and grateful for all the super positive, happy-to-help friends who joined us as PAs.

My SAG cast oozed talent and amazingness. We had Lauren Flans as “Cynthia,” Daniel Berson as “Peter,” Abbe Meryl as “Allison” and Jonathon Trent as “Jack.” The whole cast breathed even more life and comedy to the roles which were already incredibly rich and funny. And, Abbe and Jonathon delivered great make-outs for all six takes of the unforgettable “your mouth tastes like cotton candy” scene. Thank you to Dan and Sherrie at Dream Big Casting for securing these all-stars for us.

Lauren and Daniel as Cynthia and Peter.

Abbe and Jonathon as Allison and Jack.

The project was a two-day shoot.  The first day was at Chez Germen in Beverly Hills. The cafe was closed so we “owned” its outdoor space, giving Regina Taufen, my production designer, both the joy and challenge of creating a cafe with zilch money and only two days prep. It also didn’t hurt that David “Dave” Anderson graced us with his beauty and talent as background talent.

Chez Germen in its natural state.

Chez Germen post Regina's awesomeness. *Note David our A-list extra.

The second day started again at the cafe and then moved to residential sidewalks and, finally, to the front steps of a nearby house where we had a whirlwind hour and a half to shoot three scenes (2 and 3/8 pages).

Our last location of the day... three scenes in one and half hours! Don't shoot exteriors in January when the sun sets at 5.

It’ll be a while before we’re done with post and ready to premiere, but I’ll keep you posted and hopefully these quick pics have started painting the picture of the greatness ahead!

The image that inspired our last shot of the film because of its romantic look and visual play on duplicity.

Visual reference.

VIRGIN SUICIDES was our primary movie reference for the look of OFFICE BET.

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4 Responses to “Wrapped OFFICE BET”

  1. Kristen Says:

    Congrats on wrapping! Can’t wait to see it!

  2. Briel K. Says:

    Awesome! Congratulations on the short. If you ever need an extra PA or extra let me know. 🙂

    I’m thinking of coming to see your Unscreened play!

  3. Anna Says:

    Thanks Briel! We always need an extra PA so I’ll definitely holla at you next time. And it’d be fantastic to see you at UNSCREENED!!!

  4. Mimi Rudd Says:

    Sounds like a cute movie. I would like to know when & where I can see this. Plus Abbe is my cousin!

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