Pitch Proposal-165DA Project:
The script will be shared to you through google doc.
For our project we plan on making a two part satire parody video showcasing the corruption of the Royal family of Saudi Arabia. Our focus with be on an unnamed prince of Saudi Arabia who live in complete luxury in the posh neighborhood of the Hollywood hills.
The aesthetics of an MTV cribs style video in which the host, a prince of Richistahn, walks a camera crew through his alcohol, drug, prostitute, party house of a home. He’s rides up in his convertible slamming a bottle while sitting on the back of the car driven by two security The scene will open with protesters outside the house. When our prince opens the door the party in full rage mode then move on to several more subtle critiques of the corruption of the ruling class. Our Prince has also has a hot temper and gets pissed out by someone, threatens to kill people if he doesn’t get his way. These include a accidental reveal to a torture chamber, a hot tub made with money in it, a US government official giving the prince a fat check for oil money, and finally an awkward skype call between the prince and his father the King of Richistahn which showcases both the strained relationship between them but the hypocrisy that takes place between his father’s expectations of his son and what is actually taking place.
Challenges: The greatest obstacle we face with these series is production value. Fortunately we already have a house owned by a friend in the Hollywood hills that will serve the purpose for the home of our prince. The real challenge is dressing the set with enough props and extras to sell a party worthy of a Prince. We have a talented crew however with a lot of experience in production and the connections to fill our space convincingly.
2 day shoot.
The Prince of Saudi Arabia fascinated our group; Prince Majid Al-Saud who is the son of the late King Abdullah and who frequently spends a lot of time in his home in Bel-Air. What attracted us to this idea was the irony between Saudi Arabia’s strong Islamic culture and opposition to the idea of Western lifestyle and the Prince’s actions and lifestyle as the exact opposite to the values imposed his country. After making headlines last year about bizarre and troubling accusations including forcing his staff to strip naked in front of his pool, the alleged rape of a housemaid, forcing a man into a gay encounter, threatening to kill certain individuals who refused his sexual demands, and the most recently the chaos of his house parties in Bel-Air that was the scene of many fights as well as significant amounts of cocaine and prostitutes. What made this story even more interesting, is that despite all these offenses and accusations the prince was arrested and acquitted every time because of his financial stature and some of the best representation in L.A.
After reading about many issues in class about digital activism, we sought to create a comedic version of activism by examining a Prince Majid Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia who lives in Bel-Air but we’re choosing to keep anonymous in the video. Our project will consist of one video, a satire comedy. We plan to use the theme song of the show “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” and use an actor to portray Prince as Will Smith and have our own lyrics to the theme song sung by the prince. We plan to use a home in L.A for most of the video as well as some shots outdoors to really capture the theme song and to make it as close to the Prince’s lifestyle as possible.
The video will be more of satire comedic spoof very similar to an SNL skit examining the Prince at his home in Bel-Air before and after one of his parties. We plan to use an actor to portray the prince and follow him throughout the video to show what he does during this parties and as well as bringing in some of his craziest behaviors he’s been arrested for.
The video will be around 5 minutes long. We expect the shooting days to last no longer than 3-4 days. We also plan to set up shooting sometime next week on February 27th and 28th.
Our group project has significant roles for each group member. Sana and Ivan will be project manager/producer and they are responsible for everything to be on time as far as project schedule and shooting days and finding actors and extras, and will help out in every aspect needed to be filled on the shoot day. Matt and Alexa will be taking on the job as directing, cinematography and camera. While and Brandon will be in charge of editing and sound. Again, our group plans to work together with every job possible to completing the project therefore there will be a lot of overlap and help with each member across the entire project.
We hope after our video is finished it will give students an opportunity to look at a prominent member of the gulf region monarchies and learn that his actions are entirely against the cultural and religious values of his country. It will also allow people to hopefully rethink their opinion about Saudi Arabia in general to know that the country’s laws and principles are very different to what the Saudi people want and addresses the corruption as well as the ironic hypocrisy from the ruling families in the gulf.
Treatment: Production Design
For our Final project “The Fresh Prince of Saudi Arabia”, I will be taking the role of Production Design, which will consist of getting props, costume design for the actors involved, and extras for specific scenes. Since this project heavily relies on set design to make it look realistic in a rich and lavish environment, I will be getting props that match the tone of the story. For example according the script, the Prince will own a variety of objects that are covered in gold such as a gold phone, gold toaster and many more household items that will be spray painted in gold in order to make the setting appear luxurious. Additionally, one scene that consists of a bathtub filled with money will be done by buying fake money online. Since we do not have a real budget for this project, we will all pitch in a small amount of money to buy these props which should not cost much since we will make the props and objects look luxurious without actually buying these items at full price; we will bring spray paint, fake money, props that we each own that could help the set design.
In costume design, we will be purchasing an Arabic Sheik costume from Amazon which is around $20 and the crew will split the cost. After principal photography, we will return the costume and refund everyone that pitched in. The sheik costume resembles that of a Saudi Arabian prince with it being mostly black with some streaks of gold that will match all of the golden props in the lavish “palace”.
Extras will be required for a couple of scenes such as the torture scene, the party guests and maid scene. We will most likely be using our own friends that we will drive down to LA so it will make it easier for us to film the project. These are the duties that I will be performing for this project as Production Design.
As for my overall role for the final project, I’ll be handling the sound aspect of it overall. I have a good amount of experience working with sound. I have been on several short film projects as one of the Sound Mixers. As well as sound mixing, editing and overall maintenance for almost three years at my last job Also having basic level skills in all different areas of production (scriptwriting, logistics, lighting, camerawork, etc.). Anyways I’ll discuss the duties and responsibilities in my role for the final project.
As already mentioned by my peers, we will be making a detailed parody video from the popular MTV show called Cribs/Music video of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song. My general responsibilities for sound would be some of the following: to get clear audio levels overall in each scene and maintain it, correctly mic the actors when needed, move and keep the sound equipment organized. As well as help with sound mixing post-production to make sure all the audio is edited and matches the video being played on screen. As for my secondary objectives I will discuss with my fellow crew members about the logistics of it: How many microphones do we need? Do we need to use only boom mics or a lapel mics or both? How many potential outsides sounds can be reduced or eliminated altogether? These are some of the many questions that will have to answer before production happens.
Lastly will discuss all the other duties that I will be contributing to the group project besides just solely working on sound. Some of my other responsibilities towards the completion of the group project is whatever aspect of the project (lights, production, editing) I will give equal amount of attention and assist as much as possible. Furthermore will also contribute will other general objectives to make the transitions of pre-production, production and post-production as fluid as possible. That could include some or all of the following: Transportation of myself, crewmates and equipment to production location(s), help with building/tear down the set for each scene, general upkeep of equipment when needed. As well as being flexible in trying fix any problem or potential obstacles that could come up during production. In conclusion I feel I’m perfectly qualified with the role I have been given and the large collection of skills and experience that my crewmates can fill any potential gaps in knowledge that I don’t currently process.
For this project we will be filming on Matt’s DSLR camera and using his Glidecam rig in order to pull off the look that we need. We also have access to a tripod, various lenses, and all other necessary accessories and equipment in order to pull off this project. Collectively, we have the gear that we need in order to film the project, and we have access to lighting equipment through our group members. We have a set of fluorescent lights, 5-in-1s, as well as access to soundstage lighting equipment should we need to rent from the department. We don’t plan on heavily lighting the space that we are filming, so a small handful of lights should suffice for this project. The house that we plan on filming in is one where many of us have filmed before, so we are already familiar with both the layout of the space as well as with what does and doesn’t work, lighting-wise, in each room.