Yesterday we were extremely fortunate to find ourselves working on set of an independent feature film as a 3rd Assistant Director, or 3rd AD. A 3rd AD’s role on a shoot is primarily to assist the production by providing instruction or direction to background extras, relaying important information from the 1st Assistant Director, who is running the floor. It is a job we have done before, albeit under a slightly different title, as a Crowd Assistant Director on Bollywood feature film Yamla Pagla Deewana 2. Having a hand in coordinating dozens of background artistes to help the director get the shot they want is extremely thrilling, and this occasion was no exception, particularly as those artistes were on skateboards, moving fast, and doing tricks.
The film in question is called Rudy. Directed by BAFTA nominated filmmaker Shona Auerbach, whose previous film Dear Frankie helped launch the career of Gerard Butler, the film tells the story of the eponymous Rudy, a young girl who loves to skate. It follows her as she finds young love, but also deals with the pains of growing up, loss and discovery. The production is shooting around Warwickshire and the city of Coventry, the metropolis in which we found ourselves underneath an underpass in the bitterness of an England March with around two dozen extras. The shoot was a wonderful experience, with a fantastic and fantastically organised crew and extremely game extras, who, despite very cold conditions, remained smiling, helpful and brilliant throughout. The whole shoot simply flew by, testament to the great working atmosphere everyone had created. Being on a set such as that makes for an extremely rewarding day’s work.
To keep updated about the progress of Rudy, follow the production on Twitter and on Facebook. It is great to see interesting films been made in the West Midlands by such talented people. Long may it continue!