The making of WEIGHTLESS (part 1) – Preparations

It all started with a big discussion around the lunch table at the office:

“Shouldn’t we do something more adventurous? Make a project together. Go travelling!”

We (Christian & Toni) both work creatively on a daily basis but the urge to pursue something more challenging was inspiring. I (Toni) have always wanted to join my passion for freediving with my passion for composing music and working with film. So the thought of doing an underwater projects started to form. But none of us had ever done any underwater filming. Christian has some previous experience with underwater photography but only stills. So we had to take most of it from the start. We needed to supplement our camera equipment with an underwater housing (Ikelite), buy a good looking wetsuit (Orca), and eventually we got Carl persuaded to come with us as safety diver.

But it wasn’t just the practical stuff… we had to have a story! After watching the cool ‘Free Fall’ video on YouTube I felt that Nery had captured exactly what I felt myself while freediving: this enormous feeling of freedom and emotional connection with the sport. What I wanted to do was create a film where that special feeling could be exposed not only for other freedivers but for everyone who would watch it.

One late night while trying to fall a sleep I got an idea! I quickly wrote it down with one eye open and the next day Christian agreed that it was good. He added a great opening to the film and we started doing the storyboard. Needless to say that we had some cool ideas on the storyboard that wasn’t quite doable in the shooting process  🙂

 

With just a couple of weeks left before our trip we had to get acquainted with the camera underwater and try out some of the things in a pool. We had the opportunity to use the deep pool in ‘Bellahøj Svømmestadion’ were I normally train freediving. After some trial-and-error processes we realized that most of our ideas would probably work. Some – like blowing air rings at 20 m depth and then swim through them at 10 m  – was maybe a bit too eager a plan. We also experienced that the right placement of weights on the body was crucial to what could be done of acrobatic movements. But we got a good impression of how we should do the different scenes and then…. we were good to go!

 

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