Day In The Life // Filmmaker, Melinda Rainsberger

A long, long time ago I used to do spotlights on my blog. I think it's time to bring it back. I know so many creative, wonderful people and I'm so interested to see what a day in their life is like. First up we are spending a day with filmmaker Melinda Rainsberger of They're Using Tools. She lets us in on a day of filming of her short film Won't You Come Home, Bones Bailey.

All photos provided by Melinda Rainsberger

All photos provided by Melinda Rainsberger

How do you start off your day? 

During the shoot for Bones Bailey, I'd start by picking up the lead actor and make-up artist. They both lived very close to me, and this made it easy to carpool to the shoot in Fall River, MA. We'd first pickup coffee, donuts, and ice for the day as well. 

What was your big project for the day? 

The big project was Won't You Come Home, Bones Bailey--the first short film I've directed and written in seven years. It's set during prohibition and is about a trumpet player that's killed during a bar raid. He comes back from the dead and stalks (still living) girlfriend. It's based on the song "Won't You Come Home, Bill Bailey?" and I've had the idea for about ten years. 

Was there anything big you accomplished?

Besides being the first film I've written and directed in a long time, this film had about every difficult element you could ask for: custom music (that was performed in the video), special effects make-up, limited budget, and a baby! The only thing I could have added to make it harder would be an animal. The biggest thing I accomplished was directing something that was 100% my idea. This idea started my first idea out of college, and I'd never found the right set of elements till I now. Getting all those pieces together--and finishing it--was an immensely satisfying experience. 

Did you face any challenges today? 

Of course there were challenges! A zombie-comedy-musical-period piece is nothing but challenges. It's probably a toss up between having the lead actor's face reject some of the prosthetic make-up and the guilt I felt at realizing we were feeding him soap for a few takes (he didn't really complain, because he's awesome). My biggest priority is always the comfort of the crew and cast, because they are what makes a production come out awesome. I'm already planning another film, and no one has said no yet. 

Did you do anything fun?

So much fun was had! How can you not have fun on a zombie film? There's was a lot of goofing off with the actor in the zombie makeup. The studio we shot in had a lot of fun props like a ventriloquist dummy and stuffed pheasant. And then there was all the folks that got to dress up in their favorite old-timey wear--everyone loves dressing up in suspenders. My funnest moment was filming the "wake-up" sequence. It came out so beautifully I turned it into the trailer. 

You can check out the trailer for Won't You Come Home, Bones Bailey right here.