Saving Grace - The Film

PRODUCTION

Hi. Chris Pickle here. I'll use this space to post behind-the-scenes pics & videos, Director's Blog & film updates. Some of it will be chronological; some of it will be little rambles about the making of. It really should be called “War Stories”

BEHIND-THE-SCNES PHOTOS - (credit: Quinn Bisutti & Aaron Hucker)

CASTING SAVING GRACE

I started out as an actor and auditioning is a soul-crushing affair. Actors think it's about being more talented then the next, but really it's about matching the vision of the filmmaker. They sit with the project in their head for months or years, and then the actors file through. Heaven help them if they don't look like this image the filmmaker has been stewing over.

With Saving Grace, I was blessed with casting exactly my vision-and then some. Have you seen Miss Mandy Bo. Yes, she is an absolute stunner, but with eyes that exude a life lived. It's all in the eyes. Yes, an often repeated cliché, but on screen, it says everything. A look replaces a line. It says fear and makes “I'm afraid” unnecessary.

Thankfully, Jason Barbeck is a man's man, a rarity in this progressive world. A producer, having seen a rough cut of the film, remarked that Jason was more Russel Crow then Brad Pitt. What a complement, and a blessing for Saving Grace.

And no one can forget a performance from Peter Coady. Once again the “eyes” have it, as they say. Peter delivers “Hank” like he read my mind. It sends chills down your spine, just before he rips it from your body.

THE PRODUCTION DESIGN OF SAVING GRACE

For me, this really is one of the most exiting aspects of making films--the look and feel of the story world. While all films live in a certain heightened reality, it was important for Saving Grace to have a timeless quality.

The story follows a survivalist, which is really just an extreme hunter. Someone that can handle themselves. It's a world of shotguns, and canvas rucksacks. A world of camp stoves, and rubber boots. This is before nylon and high-tech polymers. A world of wool coats that stay warm no matter how wet they get. A world of musty canvas and kerosene. Having a compass in your breast pocket and a knife on your hip. A canteen is a must, and wooden matches are a life-saver.

These things populate Saving Grace, and over time, I hope they impart a timeless quality. I want the viewer to almost smell the story world--like when a certain smell takes you back to your childhood.

SHOOTING ON THE RED ONE

We shot Saving Grace on the Red One Digital Cinema Camera. The Red was released by legendary Oakley Sunglasses founder, Jim Jannard. The story goes, that he always wanted a specific kind of camera to shoot his own Oakley commercials, and being of considerably means, he had one built. The Red One camera has taken the industry by storm, with many Hollywood productions using it. The Book of Eli, Steven Soderbergh's Che Guevara biopics, The Informant, Beyond A Reasonable Doubt, and the recently announced latest installment of Pirates of The Caribbean, to name a few.

The Red offers image quality matched only by film stock and it gave Saving Grace an incredible level of production value. Everyone who has seen the film during post has remarked on the image. Cameron and I (Cameron Hucker was the DOP) take great pride in the images we shot, but the Red certainly helped us execute those creative choices.

Saving Grace - The Film