Production Sound & Video

Summer 2023

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Summer 2023 – LOCAL695.COM 41 by Blas Kisic I remember the phone call very well—a producer I've known for years, Matthew McIntyre, was on the other end. He got straight to the point, "Blas, have you ever done a hidden-camera show?" Indeed, I'd worked on a few. They were typically in a contained space, and lasted a few hours at the most. I came to realize a few weeks later, when it was too late to back out of the job, that my notion of a "hidden-camera show" and the project Matt was asking me about were two very different things. The show in question was Jury Duty, starring James Marsden, and it premiered on Amazon Freevee in April. It follows a volunteer whom we called "Hero," who signed up to participate in a documentary-style project about the legal system in Los Angeles. What he didn't know was that everyone he would interact with was an actor, and that the trial was a recreation. This Is Not Your Father's Jury Duty The scale and scope of the project (which I'd describe as "The Truman Show in real life") was unprecedented. We had to convince the volunteer he was involved in a jury trial in an actual courthouse during a period of three weeks. We had to control whom he spoke to, what he saw or read, where he went and, naturally, he'd have no access to any electronic devices to keep him from finding out what was happening in the real world. As far as I know, this had not been attempted before. To be honest (I hope the EP's don't read this), I had my doubts. The challenges, especially for the Sound Department, were many. We had two weeks of prep at the courthouse, rehearsing with our cast, who were in character during the whole day, but were also amazing improvisers. Finally, we brought in our Hero for the three-week shoot. What could possibly go wrong? Two mixers, one utility My first request to production was to hire a second mixer. I assumed that we'd have to deploy multiple rigs in different sets,

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