The Video Club’s first dramatic video, “Write It Down,” will premiere on Thursday, January 17, at the club’s 30th Anniversary Open House, 6:30-8:30 pm in the Video Lab and Video Studio, open free to all residents and their guests. In addition to the premiere, the event will feature wine, cheese, and other refreshments and hands-on demonstrations of green screen effects and teleprompter use, as well as smartphone video-making with Stephanie Brasher and previews of winter-spring Video Club classes.
Click here for Open House flier.
Short Video Comedy
“Write It Down” is an original short video comedy about an absent-minded senior couple. We laugh with Melvin and Rose over what they can’t remember – such as the un-recalled memoir Melvin is trying to write. At the same time, the serious issue of senior memory loss is addressed by their friendly psychologist, whose advice may help us all. “Write It Down” (10-15 minutes) will also be shown on Village Television (schedule TBA). It may be entered into film festivals, and will later be available on the Video Club’s YouTube channel. All cast and crew are are Village residents.
Click here to view production still photos by Andre Torng taken at December 4 and 5 “Write It Down” shoots in John and Alexandra Kelly’s residence and in the Video Studio. Selected photos from the December 4 shoot are shown at bottom of this page.
Playing the memory-challenged couple are the script’s author, Gila Zalon, a dancer, actress, film producer, screenwriter, and literary agent, and her husband, Jules Zalon, a copyright and entertainment attorney. The Zalons moved to Laguna Woods Village three years ago from New Jersey. Gila Zalon founded and leads a resident scriptwriting group. Shiela Bialka, who has directed many Village stage plays, returns to acting to portray the helpful psychologist. Both Gila and Jules appeared in The Old Pros’ recent play, Laura, under Shiela’s direction.
In photo above, Rose (Gila Zalon, right) and Melvin (Jules Zalon) consult psychologist (Shiela Bialka) about their memory problems.
Our First Dramatic Video
Under the guidance of Dr. Tom Nash, who taught video production for many years at Biola University, the Video Club’s first dramatic video was made possible by the existence of Video One Productions, the Video Club’s two-year-old production team, which now numbers over 30 participants. Tom introduced a new Video Club class in “Producing Dramatic Video” for Video One Productions members last fall.
In the past, Video Club members shot and edited several short dramatic videos prepared and brought to them by The Old Pros. This time, however, Video One Productions selected and developed the script, conducted casting calls and rehearsals, and managed all other phases of production, including publicity and distribution.
Video One Productions expects to produce more dramatic videos, opening creative opportunities for Village residents in production and performance, as well as in screenwriting.
The dramatic video’s producer is retired TV comedy writer Phil Doran, who worked on such shows as “All in the Family” and “Sanford and Son.” Phil pioneered resident-originated entertainment for Village Television through the Video Club in 2016, when he produced “Never Too Late to Date,” a game show inspired by ABC TV’s “The Dating Game,” which Phil once worked on.
The video’s director is professional videographer John Kelly, who serves as the Video Club’s External Video Coordinator, working with Village clubs and residents to meet requests for limited video services. John and his wife, Alexandra Scott-Kelly, run their own video production company.
Editing is by Suzanne Savlov, who also served as script clerk. Working in Final Cur Pro, Suzanne edits many Video One projects. Casting assistance and make-up were by Dr. Jeanne Mayer, who serves with Doran as Video One Productions’ Co-Facilitator. In addition, Jeanne coordinated music for “Write It Down.” Professional musician Dave Siebels, not a resident, contributed original music.
Lucy Parker served a director of photography, with Alexandra Scott-Kelly and Paul Kachaturian as camera operators. Starkey was in charge of sound, with Betsy Martin and Paul Kachaturian as boom operators. Serving as grips and gaffers were Paul Kachaturian and Jim Rohrs. Jill Amadio was the slate operator and also managed props. Lucy Parker assembled the credits. Ellen Van Houten and Lucy Parker handled publicity. Still Photography was by Andre Torng and Alexandra Scott-Kelly.
Gila Zalon’s script was chosen by members of the “Producing Dramatic Video” class from eight resident script submissions at their first meeting on September 14. As in his Hollywood TV days, Producer Phil Doran several times assembled a “writers room” of crew members and others to “punch up” the script’s comic elements. “Writers room” participants were Jill Amadio, Leon Goldberg, Bill Hemberger, Paul Kachaturian, John Kelly, Dr. Jeanne Mayer, Lucy Parker, Suzanne Savlov, Alexandra Scott-Kelly, Starkey, and Ellen Van Houten.
Production stills from “Write It Down” shoot December 4, 2018. To open this gallery, click on any photo. To close it, click “X” in the upper right corner. PHOTOS BY ANDRE TORNG