SUMMARY OF THE PROPOSED VISUAL STYLE FOR THE AUCTION FILM
The overall approach of the film will be a combination of participating and observing camera style but never the "fly on the wall", that is, whether we are clearly creating a situation(participating) or merely observing(as in the auction) we will attempt the make the audience aware of our presence and of the construction of the film rather than the recordings of reality.
1. INTERVIEWS We want the interviews to be seen as conversations recorded for a particular reason in a particular environment. We will establish the context with shots of the outside of the house and with establishing shots of the room where the interview takes place and some of the details of that environment. While the emphasis will be upon the interviewee, we will have shots medium of both parties particularly at the beginning of the interview and the end with some times aoming back to this medium shot at the place where the interviewee is ending their answer iid the next question is about to be asked. Generally we wish to avid the "action reaction" sequencing of journalism and tight contextless CU's The interviewee will be shot in at least a head and shoulders view. We wish to avoid having either party look directly into the camera a if they were talking to the audience and not each other. The pacing of the interview will be in keeping with the pacing of the conversation, that is, life in Juniata county is rather slow compared to many other places, so thee interviews may be slow paced. Besides obtaining information about the role of the interviewee in and about the mechanics of the events we also wish to establish the interviewee as a "character" since we will use them as a familiar character in the auction.
Since we are totally opposed to cutaways" as devises of cutting we will use other means . imply the editing of the interview such as fades. We can however use images of the interview environment if we wish to reinforce Something that is being said. Finally we will shot some footage "before" the interview begins and "afterwards" so that we have some reflexive or process material if we choose to use it. If either the interviewee or interviewer talks to the crew or Ben, the camera should not automatically be shut off. We may be some nice natural reflexive material that way.
PREVIEWS AND PREPARATION
The Previews and other "Walk Thrus" of the sale house will be organized around a "character" responding and guiding an interviewer thru the event. Spontaneous interaction if it occurs will be "icing on the cake" but we should assume that it will not and therefore plan to get everything we need from the constructed event. Similarly the shooting of the preparation of the house for the sale will have to be orchestrated through the family spokeperson so that we are assured of getting what we need. If we luck out and get a Jean G. so much the better but we cannot plan on it.
The auction is the only semi uncontrolled event in the film. We will have to go with what happens. We have two emphases in this event the objects which we have already established as being interesting and the characters we have interviewed. Generally we will avoid filming total strangers and we will religiously avoid the "local color" approach of the normal documentary. We will follow each of the designated objects through the entire process from the table to the customer. It is the new owner who may be the only stranger who we introduce into the film at this point. Since we cannot predict whether the owner of the designated piece will be cooperative, we need to select other new objects to follow through in order to protect our selves. The two crews will have an ethnographer attached to them and a check list of activities and persons to cover. The check list will be sufficiently open to allow the crew to follow up new events.