Playing the Moldovans at Tennis was shot in 2010, over roughly 8 weeks, mostly in Chisinau, Moldova, with a few scenes in London, Belfast & Jerusalem. Good friend Mikolaj Jaroszewicz was lensing it, with a few other old buddies making it to the small landlocked eastern european nation (camera op Canan Kadana, gaffer Tim Jordan…). I had Neil McIntyre & Tom Fennell sharing boom duties on this one. There was maybe a 40+ local unit as well (electrics, camera, art, costume & MU, ADs, production), all of whom were great, not to mention super helpful with local knowledge during and/or after shoot hours. This was the adaptation of Tony Hawks’ best selling novel, and Tony was with us playing his own role. Production had hired a house and a flat for the few HODs that had come from London, where we lived for just under two months, and did our best to learn a bit of romanian (enough to go buy supplies at our local shops, negotiate with taxi drivers, order the right drinks on weekends…). I also had the chance to record the Moldovan Philharmonic Orchestra for a few scenes in the film, which was great as music recording within the context of filming is rather rare, not to mention that they were seriously skilled. It was quite a sight filming in some of those deserted parks, old soviet looking apartment blocks, wide boulevards. I remember one day production had a 6 lane boulevard closed off for a few hours for us as it was in the back of shot… (the kind of stuff that wouldn’t even have been possible on a 100M£ budget film, in London). We also seemed to have a side of pollenta & soup at lunch every day, no matter what the mains were!
Published on March 4, 2014