BTS of SOUL OF A SCRAPYARD: It's funny how long personal projects take sometimes. I've been riding my bike (and motorcycle) through the neighborhood Willets Point for the last 4 years. Late Fall of 2016 I noticed the city had begun tearing down some of the shops, and I knew it was time to revisit the story. I linked up with my buddy Mike Plunkett (who directed Salero and also happens to live in Queens) and we hit the pavement (and gravel) looking for a subject. After some poking around we were introduced to Sam Sambucci III. Sam provided a great subject and ambassador to the neighborhood.
To film the project (and to finish it), we called in a bunch of favors. We enlisted the help of Gabriel Pimenta for some steadicam shots. We shot on my Amira package and Xenons lenses. Andy Whitlatch provide an extra hand and the below BTS photos. We used a Canon c300 for a few car mounted shots and a DJI inspire for the 2 drone shoots. Picture Farm productions and Crew Cuts helped with post and finishing, and we licenses tracks from The Music Bed.
When we started out, we didn't have an outlet locked in, but after previewing a rough cut for The New York Times opt-docs, they signed on and helped us finish up the piece.
Although it took me 4 years to pick up a camera to capture this unique corner of NYC, and another 8 months (on and off of course) to finish the project, the final film is one of my most favorite projects to date. Thanks to Vimeo for the Staff pick and the extra views!
Here are a few of my favorite screen grabs. My favorite part of this project was meeting a ton of people from the neigborhood. And after hanging around for a week, the weary looks turned into friendly hellos.