The film, entitled Cassiopeia, begins shooting in May and is an ambitious and intense drama short, about two lovers that meet again after not having seen each other for two years. The production is also a Masters project for a team of international film students at the University of Edinburgh’s College of Art, who are aiming to produce their film as eco-friendly as possible. That’s why the student production team behind ‘Cassiopeia’ has made its very own ‘Green Production Guide’; a guide that coordinates specific green filmmaking efforts among all of the project’s members & levels of production. In order to take full advantage, the green filmmaking approach is prominently featured on most of the project’s promotional materials, effectively broadening the scope of confident film funders & shareholders. As a sign of great success, the crew’s green filmmaking ethos has already been awarded the SRS Student Project Grant by the University of Edinburgh’s Department for Social Responsibility & Sustainability – Bravo! You can support the green production of Cassiopeia on its Indigogo page here, or check out its Green Production Guide here.
Dutch producer, Sam Van Zoest, was able to develop a green guide for Cassiopeia with full support from Hungarian Director, Balázs Szövényi-Lux: “We do this to spare the environment and also to inspire other filmmakers to come up with green solutions in the industry”. The guide is intended to be for everyone involved in the production (from cast and crew, to investors and associated rental companies) because as the film’s producer Sam Van Zoest states,“Green Filmmaking is a collaborative effort. Therefore it is important that everybody involved in the production is aware of our aspirations”.
Highlighted tips for the entire crew are clearly listed in Cassiopeia‘s Green Production Guide, and include: using eco-friendly fonts, minimizing printing by using tablets for scripts, digital file sharing, swapping old bulbs for LED bulbs, using public transport instead of hired cars where possible, renting low impact high efficiency vehicles, employing heating timers so that heat is not left on unnecessarily, utilizing Skype (rather than commuting) for meetings, as well as scouting locations that are close to the studio and are accessible via public transport.
On the catering front, the crew is opting for: ‘Meatless Mondays’ and ‘Veggie Fridays’, donating their leftover food wastes, buying local & organic ingredients, as well as using washable re-usable dishware over disposable where possible.
The Green Production Guide is also encouraging the art department to use eco and salvaged products, as well as coordinate for the donation of left over materials to reuse. Biodegradable materials, and non toxic paints are also highlighted as easy environmental alternatives for the art department.
Though the production team prides itself on its decision to shoot on 16mm, it also recognizes that this is a far less sustainable option when compared to the digital alternatives available today. Citing the decision as an important artistic measure, the team outlines the ways in which they will aim to offset the energy intense processes of celluloid film through their various shooting measures: by utilizing natural light and low energy lighting, having rechargeable batteries for cameras, etc.
Future filmmakers everywhere are shifting their sights, & are incorporating the green approach into more relevant ways of thinking about production. If these students can take on green filmmaking without the resources of an established production house behind them, the bigger studios can definitely follow suit. This is the future of filmmaking, and this crew of up-and-commers is certainly onto something great. We can’t wait to see the finished product.
If you enjoyed this article, you will also like the following from our blog: Film Industry Awards Season: Cutting Carbon Doesn’t Mean Cutting Quality and From ‘Greening the Screen’ (UK) to ‘Shades of Green’ at the upcomming Berlinale (DE); industry is buzzing with overwhelming talks of commitment to sustainable practice