Are reshoots really such a bad thing?

By Member
Charles W-W
Reshoots are a normal part of a production - but it can be more complicated than that

Published 14th August 2017


By , Member

Reshoots – a word that strikes such terror, with screams and cries heard from afar at its very mention.

You’ll maybe see headlines like, “Mr. Bean has finished its principle photography and will now begin post-production” then only week later, “Mr. Bean has to go through reshoots before it hits post-production”. But don’t worry, there may not be anything in particular wrong with the wild adventures of Mr. Bean. Yes that’s right; the stank word “reshoots” isn’t actually all that that bad –let me tell you frightened bunch why.

Whilst a film is in pre-production (before shooting starts), the production team will actually schedule in some time after principle photography just for reshoots. It provides the studio a bit of insurance to make sure the film goes out on time – even if extra work is required. The reshoot period is usually around 25 days (or the equivalent of a quarter of the principle photography time).

That time is put aside so that when the director, editors, and producers go into post-production/the editing room, if they come across a scene that didn’t quite work as well as they hoped, or feel they need an extra scene to help the movie – they have the time to do something about it. So in this sense, film reshoots aren’t at all bad.

But where there’s smoke, there’s fire and there’s a reason why reshoots can stink.

First on the stand is a small franchise called Star Wars, or more specifically the Han Solo solo film. Originally helmed by comedy directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller who had started principle photography back in late February, concerns started to surface late into the project.

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Eyebrows were raised over Lord and Miller’s overly comedic directing style and how they wanted their actors to perform more improv. This eventually led to Lord and Miller being booted off the project in late June and a new director, Ron Howard, was hired to take their place. Not only was Lord and Miller’s sacking bad enough for this project, but due to Howard having a completely different style to his predecessors, Kathleen Kennedy (Lucasfilm exec) and Howard thought it best to reshoot nearly the whole film. That’s two and half months of Lord and Miller’s work down the drain.

I don’t blame Lord and Miller; I blame who ever hired them in the first place.

It’s been just over a month since Ron was hired and reshoots are expected to take up to December. “Why is this actually bad? We’re still getting the film, it’s not scrapped!” Well did you know that the original release date for this project was May 25th 2018, and guess what the new release date is… it’s May bloody 25th 2018 – still! That means after reshoots are done and everyone’s come back from their December holidays, the editing team have around five months to edit (what I predict) at least a two-hour long film, get a teaser trailer out, get a fully FX’d trailer out, and support the marketing run. Most films will have 2-3 months longer for this process but if Lucasfilm wants to play chicken with this release date, it’ll be us fans that will feel the crash.

I’d rather Han Solo come out in Star Wars season (December) knowing everything isn’t rushed.

Next I want to talk about the Justice League film. The situation goes a lil’ something like this: Zack Snyder wraps up principle photography but just before the scheduled reshoots start, Snyder drops out after the tragic death of his daughter. Joss Whedon (of Avengers fame) comes in to finish the project off, but being a different director with his own style, he wants to reshoot a lot of scenes and add some new ones.

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A change of director director, as seen above, isn’t good news for a production. Whedon will not be able to work with Snyder’s style – so this will take up much more time than scheduled, but still the project should be out on time as editors can cut as production continues.

The funny/bright side to all this is Henry Cavil’s moustache. You have probably heard about this already, but I couldn’t help but include it. This was all thanks to Cavil’s next film, Mission Impossible, which required Henry to sport a moustache, and because he is now on Mission Impossible’s time, they have demanded that Justice League leave his moustache on – forcing JL to digitally remove Henry’s tash in post. The weird thing is, apparently, it’s a lot cheaper to paint a moustache on than it is to take one off because of all the lip movement. When you go to see Justice League in November, be sure not to stare at Henry’s lips, as something might seem a little off.

Thanks for reading this article, it is muchly appreciated. Give us a like and a cheeky share if you enjoyed this article and let me know by tweeting me @charliewarnerw. Or, if you didn’t like this article then uh…. jog on m8.

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