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Filmmaker Profile: “4GOT10” Director Timothy Woodward Jr.

Filmmaker Profile: “4GOT10” Director Timothy Woodward Jr.

Early in 2015, HDSLR Shooter had unprecedented access to the set of what was at the time the sixth feature film of Director Timothy Woodward Jr. The project, “4GOT10“, tells the story of a wounded man who wakes up in the desert surround by bodies, with no memory and with three million dollars in cash. The action thriller stars Johnny MessnerDolph LundgrenDanny Trejo and Michael Paré.

We were excited for the opportunity to check out first hand some of the dramatic action sequences of the film, including actual gun battles with live rounds and explosions. However we were also excited to see first hand the Blackmagic URSA in action on a feature for the very first time.

In the video interview, Woodward explains that he used the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K on a previous production and was so impressed by its performance and quality that he pushed to get a Blackmagic URSA for 4GOT10.  The Ursa was appealing because of its high frame rates which he wanted to take advantage of for the action sequences of the film.

It’s worth noting this is a huge vote of confidence in Blackmagic Design on the part of Woodward, especially when you consider the cost of using actual gunfire. One of the action sequences which feature a gun battle with seven stunt actors firing shotguns, pistols and assault rifles, grenades, special permits and insurance costs in the neighborhood of twenty thousand dollars.

It’s not like shooting a couple of actors in an apartment. The amount of preparation, rehearsal and care required make them extremely valuable. Not to mention, you really only get one take.

grenade

Stunt performer blown sky high in “4GOT10”

 

Of course, Woodward didn’t tackle this alone. He had veteran 2nd Unit Director/Stunt Coordinator Josh Tessier who conspired with Woodward to create a realistic and dramatic gun battle.

As good of a camera as the URSA is, to capture the spectacle like the gun battles in 4GOT10 requires a careful eye and the steady hands of a talented director of photography, and that’s just what Woodward found in DP Pablo Díez. Díez, along with his first AC Tania Espinosa, worked tirelessly to get the best out of the URSA and ensure every shot wasn’t just adequate, but a true work of art.

Blackmagic Design Ursa

The Blackmagic Design Ursa

 

Of course, the proof that the URSA is feature worthy is in film itself, and of course people will have varying opinions. But when shot properly, the images are truly stunning. The URSA, coupled with Davinci Resolve gives filmmakers like Woodward everything they need to create beautiful images. To have the verbal endorsement of a filmmaker like Woodward is impressive, but let’s face it – talk is cheap. The true endorsement comes with his decision to use not one but two Blackmagic URSA’s on his seventh film, Weaponized. You can check out the trailer for it below.

For more information about Director Timothy Woodward Jr. and his company, Status Media and Entertainment, go to the website at: www.statusmedia-ent.com

For more information about the Blackmagic Design Ursa, go to their website at www.blackmagicdesign.com

 

 

  • FabDex

    Sorry to say, but after seeing the trailer, the movie looks terrible, not just “scriptwise” but “grading-wise”. It is just not a good way to showcase the Ursa at all.

    I’ve seen demo images, shot on a street corner in New York, that looked more cinematic than this.

    I frankly do not understand the enthusiasm you have for that movie, or director (probably a good friend of yours…) but it takes away A LOT of your credibility. The movie just looks it looks like your typical zero budget action flick starring has-been d-listers.

    And yet you keep on raving !

    “To have the verbal endorsement of a filmmaker like Woodward is impressive”. Really ? Really ? A director who has an average “4” rating on IMDB is impressive ?

    I don’t want to knock the guy down: at least he’s directing “features”, but Clint, you write about him like he’s Alejandro González Iñárritu and like the images of “4GOT10” (jesus…) look like “The Revenant”.

    • To each his own, and Fabby your opinions, tastes and ideas belong to you. Just because you don’t subscribe to mine doesn’t make mine wrong, it simply makes them different than yours. Having said that, I don’t think I’m gushing over him as much as you’re accusing.

      For the record I met Woodward because I was told by a third party that he was shooting features with Blackmagic cameras. This was of interest to me because I wanted to know how the cameras were performing under the rigors of feature production rather than just shorts or people as your friend who were idly shooting street corners and leaves blowing for their own amusement.

      Woodward in turn was kind enough to give me total access to the production. I was allowed to roam the set with a camera as much as I pleased – no PR person or PA holding my hand, no supervision at all really. He simply introduced me to his 1st AD and advised her to accommodate me. He didn’t ask to see the piece before I ran it.

      Is 4GOT10 a perfect movie? No. I never said it was, but then again it’s not a perfect world. The real world of independent film production is fraught with budget constraints, which means a lack of personnel and a lack of time which means things aren’t as good as they could be if you have a bottomless pit of cash. So you do the best you can with what you have. The alternative is to cowardly sit back and say “Until I can make my perfect little vision perfectly I won’t do it at all.”

      Despite these limitations, Woodward has 8 features that have been distributed under his belt. He’s worked with what he has, with the hope that next time it will be better. He’s proven he can not only talk about making a movie, he can deliver. He stays on time and on budget, and they make money. That by itself commands respect. The fact that he would risk his career on an a piece of new untested technology is bold, and it also should be respected.

      I admire him most because he gets it done. In a business where people spend years simply trying to break in, he does it. Additionally his films continue to improve. He’s committed to improving his craft. That is admirable.

      Let me ask you Fabby, have you directed any features? Features that were actually finished? If so were they distributed? Make any money? Did your investors make money?
      If so please link to them, so I can watch them and render MY opinion.

      If you don’t agree that’s fine, but keep your comments relative to the topic and please don’t troll my site simply because you are of a different opinion. Voice your opinion, but please be respectful.

    • Sean Ryan

      Strange that you can tell the script is “terrible” from the trailer. I know haters have to hate and that’s a matter of choice. But…

  • FabDex

    THIS JUST IN !!!

    “4GOT10” : rated 4.1 on IMDB !

    Blackmagic’s stock must be going up !

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