One of the best trips in my life... (April 2007)
The "Crossing" shoot was so much fun. When Jarred, Deanan, Rob and I flew over to New Zealand to shoot with Peter, we had NO IDEA what he had planned. We showed up and went right into a production meeting with 15 people. I thought we were just going to do do some testing and get some footage for NAB. The surprise (on us) was that Peter called in his army to shoot a short feature. There were over 200 people... with uniforms, guns and airplanes! It seems that Peter had generated a script while we were in the air from Orange County to Wellington and it called for helicopter footage from one of the cameras. Now "Boris" and "Natasha" were both less than a few days old and we had no idea how they would hold up to rigorous treatment. I politely asked Peter, in front of 14 other people, if "we might do the helicopter stuff last"? There was a bit of trepidation in my voice as I could just see these cameras biting the dust in minutes. Peter told me to relax and that everything would be fine. Two and a half days later, he was right. After a true beating, including heat, dust & dirt, cranes, helicopters and 14 hours a day non-stop... we didn't lose a take. I met this guy, Neill Blomkamp, who Peter said would be a future star. Apparently Peter was right. Neill ran the 2nd unit and I could immediately see why Peter thought so much of this "kid". It was no surprise to me to see what Neill did with "District 9". He is a super talent. Every one of Peter's crew was a delight to work with. The shoot was so fun and I will remember it forever. The payoff of this shoot was to see people waiting up to 2 hours to see it at NAB 2007... and glad they did. BTW, that was less than one week after we shot. Peter's team posted the footage and delivered it the night before NAB opened. Whew!