By: Adriana Avila, Senior Reporter
Film student Rhiannon Keams said she will be working on an upcoming feature film titled “Mortal.” This action thriller will show viewers a plague ridden society where vengeance plays key for the protagonist.
“‘Mortal’ is going to be a pretty huge movie from what I’m told. There are a couple big names that they’re looking to bring on the film so it can get more attention and everything, so it’s going to be a feature film,” she said.
Keams struck a deal with the film production company to allow another student from the film program to work as a paid employee, she said.
Keams said she was hired as a location scout for the film scheduled to begin shooting in early August.
A location scout travels to the proposed filming area to canvass and take photos for a film along with gathering detailed information about the space for the producers, she said.
Because of her experience in the film “Enemy Way” and the television show “Longmire,” Keams said after scouting the location she will assume the role of location manager for the film.
“As location manager, I’m the person who’s in charge of making sure that I take care of the logistics of the film. We’re like the public relations department of film, since we’re dealing with the public and we don’t want to upset anybody, because you never know, we may want to go back to that same area and film again in the future. At the same time, we’re there to foster relationships with them to show that wherever we go, it’s just easier to go back if we have to,” she said.
Along with maintaining relationships in the community, a location manager takes the time and effort to strategize where the film should and should not be shot at, she said.
“We try to forecast the weather and find out what other events are going to happen around, we have to consider the sound. We want the clearest sound possible, the clearest dialogue actually for sound recording. So we just have to consider all these different things when we choose a location,” she said.
The location manager oversees and directs where equipment is placed on a set, such as wardrobe and electrical equipment, but also is on the lookout if the location goes sour, she said.
“We have to figure out a second location, if say, something goes wrong, a contract fell through, a permit failed, or out of the blue if something happens. We try to stay ahead of the game,” she said.
Funding for “Mortal” is still in discussion and production will not take place for some time but Keams said she is excited for what could lay ahead.
“I’m not sure what’s going to happen, but what I’m learning with film is, you can’t look too much into the future, you have to deal with today, so that’s what I’m doing, trying to stay positive,” she said.
Keams has a bachelor’s degree in Business from UNM and a Film Technician certification from CNM.
Keams plans on taking a script writing class to put her ideas on paper and continue exploring the parts of film she does not have much experience in. But mostly she wants to venture further in the educational parts of it, she said.
“My dream is to get into NYU so I can earn my master’s in film and in business. I’d like to focus on the creative aspects, directing, more writing, acting kind of things, but also, business is another important part as well because it leads into producing. It’s one of the areas in film I have yet to touch and I really want to learn, I feel like it’s going to make me a more well-rounded and more marketable person to the industry,” she said.
There is much Keams said she needs to learn but has the connections that will allow her to continue what she has already begun.
“I’m glad about the experience, and it’ll help get a footing, it’s all about helping each other I think. That’s what I’ve realized in this industry. It’s not really what you know, though that is still important, but it’s about who you know and the relationships that you foster,” she said.