The university dean visits the head cheerleader to hatch a surreptitious plot…

            Though Bring It On Again was a light-hearted, slyly humorous film, the visual mandate for this particular scene was spooky, foreboding, vaguely threatening.  It takes place in a deserted gymnasium – clearly, a very large space – so I needed to somehow counter that open feeling.  I wanted to create a sense of claustrophobia…a reminder that in spite of the quick escape that appears to be available, there were threats hidden in the shadows – and those phantoms could close in fast.

            Most of the work was handled by a series of 1K PAR cans suspended from handily-located mounting points in the ceiling.  Few lamps are more simply constructed than these.  Originally used in theatrical situations, they consist of a 1000W PAR64 (tungsten) globe mounted in a cylindrical housing.  I didn’t use any diffusion on them because I wanted those sources to remain hard; this helped define the pools of light on the gym floor.  Other PARs were diffused and set to a lower level so as to create the slightest bit of ambient light for the room.  This also kept the shadows from going too dark.  Everything was wired into a dimmer board which made adjustments quick and easy.

            For the closer work on the actors, each was lit from floor units – in this case, a Mole Richardson 2K Baby Junior bounced into a 4’x4′ piece of foam core.  This configuration makes for a wonderful eyelight which you’ll note in the clip.  When used at all, fill light was kept to a minimum.

            Steadicam was used to bring the Dean across the gym floor to his end mark.



  1. Love the simplicity and yet delivering a highly threatening effect. Thanks for sharing Richard.

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