Video shot by Peter Leix, edited by Collin McRae.
As Sharad Kant Patel goes through the final post production on his first feature film "Christian Roane", he sought to fulfill a desire to compose and produce original soundtrack music of the type he has been a fan of since childhood. In middle school and high school, his turntable wasn't playing the latest top 40, rather, he was spinning records of the works of Jerry Goldsmith, John Barry, James Horner, Basil Poledouris, and of course John Williams. Add to this his introduction to contemporary classical music (by avenue of Stanley Kubrick films) composers like György Ligeti and Krzysztof Penderecki. With absolutely no music training but an ear for what he liked, he became inspired by the stories of one man bands like Paul McCartney or Prince, artists that could perform and produce entire albums by playing and recording all the parts themselves one layer at a time. He slowly began making his own musical compositions from simple beats on a four track 8 bit Amiga computer to eventually graduate to a Pro Tools workstation in his living room.
With "Christian Roane" he wanted to create a rich soundtrack of memorable melodies that did not overtly emulate any popular soundtrack trends of today. Creating a foundation composition in the form of a repeating keyboard melody, he created the first theme for the film, a theme for the main character called "Mysterious Pity" or "Christian's Theme". The film has an eerie supernatural aura to it's narrative, and the theme reflects that.
After completing his solo demo, he enlisted the help of artist/musician Collin McRae, initially as a session musician to add a few violin tracks over his backing orchestral emulation. Collin's recording sessions yielded take after take of variations of improvised lead lines. Using those as bricks on the foundation of his backing tracks, Sharad created and edited melodies and counter melodies together into a cohesive composition. In effect, Collin became the co-composer creating the pieces of the lead melodies which in turn will influence the other themes still to be composed.
Here is a behind the scenes look at the process, documented by Peter Leix at Sharad's informal home studio in Ann Arbor.
The finished, mixed and mastered theme can be heard here: soundcloud.com/ufoclub1977/christians-theme-from-the
ABOUT THE FILM:
With a story expanded from a simple meditative 40 minute short produced five years ago, the current much more complex feature is now locked at a tightly paced running time of 1 hour and 20 minutes. The project is completely self financed with no investors. It is a joint personal effort between the original producer Sebastian Mathews (based on his original story), Sharad Patel (writing and directing), Robert Murphy (DP throughout) and many subsequent volunteer actors, 2nd unit producers, and production assistants in the indie Texas filming community.
"It's been like a miniature version of a Terrance Malick model of unrestricted free flowing production these past many years." - Sharad
Many meticulous technical processes have taken place on this budget of pennies. The final locked cut was converted from the original inferior HDV 30p format into a true 24p format and pushed with a "cinematic" look involving multiple layers of digital adjustments taking months of experimentation to develop. (The original short was unfortunately shot with a Sony HVR-Z1U 1/3-inch ccd HDV Camera years before the current wave of inexpensive and superior 24p large sensor cameras appeared). "We've worked very hard to try to distance the movie from its native live video look with our home grown techniques."
Post production is now continuing in Ann Arbor, Michigan in a home studio workspace. Original sound effects and foley are being recorded. Color correction and special effects are being devised and added, and an original score will be composed.
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