"The Collector" is a tale of a psychologically unstable man who is compelled to confront his inner demons when he discovers a small music box that sparks memories of his daughter. This is a short film made by a bunch of fresh graduates from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Film Sound and Video School, while waiting for their National Service enlistment into the Singapore Armed Forces.
I love the atmosphere at the flea (thieves') market along Sungei Road. It is so spontaneous and uncommon in today's highly organised Singapore. Unfortunately, 'Sungei Road' will soon vanish to make way for urban renewal.
Crowd control was the main problem there. We had to hide the camera at a safe distance to allow the crowd to pass by and move on, so that they won't stare at the actors or the camera. Annoyingly, one of them followed us around and appeared in front of our camera several times, pretending that his presence in frame was just a coincidence.
The climax of the shoot occurred during the confrontation scene when a public-spirited man, not knowing that we were on a shoot, rushed in to intervene and stop me from snatching the little girl away. We should have kept the camera rolling to capture the commotion. That breaking of the fourth wall, incorporated into the film, would have been priceless.
Some directors are very quick to capture such rare windows of opportunities. To these directors, the camera would roll until he shouts "cut", unless the situation was life threatening.
I have acted in several films as a karung-guni (rag-and-bone) man. For more, click here.
Some production photos: