Fixing Services in Osaka
Production services for foreign productions includes a variety of tasks both expected and unexpected ones. DFS has long been part of this business and seen how this production service market goes in Japan, especially budget productions. To make long story short, our production service has been functioned as literally their utility man, who'll do whatever foreign productions needed. We ended up with calling this utility man a Fixer. The fixer arranges almost all necessities in pre-productions and production, from location, crew, talents, logistics, equipment, food, to whatsoever.
January 2018 news letter is to report one of fixing examples with DFS, which we recently be part of it. Our original duties on this project was some location (up to three) and drone operations. But things never goes as planed. We did not have script until 8 days before the first shooting day. This shooting day was fixed 10 days before the first shooting date. We always recommend all productions to start moving well ahead of time at least two weeks for example, but many productions don't follow any way. Consequently, we end up with arranging about six locations, helping some logistics, arranging supportive crew, helicopter shoot, and elaborative drone operations whose flight arrangements usually require at least 2 weeks to finish (again, we just had a week for arrangement), in addition to coordinating tasks during productions (all done by a fixer).
As for locations, we arranged filming permits from Shitennoji temple, Osaka castle, Amerika-mura shopping district, Tenjinbashi-suji shopping streets (all from 1 to 6), Dotonbori shopping street, and Kuromon market. Additionally, we also arranged locations for droning from Hokko, two river offices, and Maishima's land, all in a week. The difficulty was that a producer did not understand my advice that we have to fix everything well ahead of time. Location preferences varies and varies until last minutes and every time we had to move and research totally new one. We did not have time to the shooting day and the producer still believed that it's possible to change everything even at the last minutes. If you are in budget and shooting in Japan, this is not the case at all.
A new accident came three days before the first shooting day. A crew who was supposed to come to Japan could not get visa in time and could not come to Japan. The producer asked DFS help for arranging this role, three days before the first shoot (again). We arranged three crew successfully. It was two days before the shoot. We were relieved. The producer asked discount for this done deal and we had a new problem again. One of the crew was uncomfortable with this asking. Of course it is. We arranged this deal however. We were relieved again. Finally, the producer asked that she wanted to cancel this crew's work. We had a problem again. We said this too-many-change is not acceptable at all and you have to compensate for this cancellation. The producer ended up with keeping this job as originally planned.
We also arranged helicopter shoot for this project. This was successfully done because we repeatedly asked the pilot to come back to the heliport within 30 minutes. Fight expenses basically calculated based on flight time. The producer believed they can fly longer with the fixed rate. This is like their production usually goes this way and they believed they can do the same all over the world. It is that they make an agreement with low amount of service with low budget but they end up with asking more tasks with the same estimation. This is not possible at all. What we can is to ask the pilot to strictly follow the estimated time of flight, the thirty minutes. He is a genius pilot and came back to the heliport exactly on 30 minutes.
Finally, drone arrangement and operation in a week was literally elaborative. According to the team's preferences, we searching locations and arranged five flight locations inside the city of Osaka. It was great drone shoot in the morning and evening.
I can say that it is rarely possible to see this degree of success with budget in Japan. We, DFS Productions, can make this possible. If you have a project in Japan, contact us and we will accept comprehensive production tasks in Osaka and Kyoto, Japan.