Because of the deteriorated nature of the script’s locations, finding someplace that works “as is” has proven difficult. Las Vegas is renowned for getting rid of the old quickly (and “old” isn’t even that old). So we’ve started looking at a large enough space to build sets. We may have found a location; there are two possibilities. Until then, we’re figuring out the cost to actually build and dress the sets themselves. Obviously it’s more expensive to build the sets from scratch, but nice to have the creative freedom to make them exactly the way we want them. Putting doors and windows where they need to go, being able to destroy sections, basically making it everything the story begs it to be. The location in “The Bet” is almost a character itself, so I’m excited to see what we come up with. We’ve got a lot of reference photos from abandoned asylums to pull from to give it that worn, derelict, hopeless look. Plus a few nods to the Silent Hill videogames as well.
Here are some of the references I’ve pulled (1, 3 and 5 are from Opacity, an amazing site that always creeps me out. 4 is from the alternate hospital in Silent Hill 2 and 2 is from a location scout website).
If one of the locations works out, we’ll only have it on the weekends, so the challenge will be to move the set into the space in sections, put them together, prep, light and dress in one day to allow us the next day to shoot, then clear everything out. With three locations, this is going to take three full weekends, and due to having to bring them in sections, we’ll most likely be painting or prepping walls most of the first day.
The other challenge will be blocking the shots beforehand so our one day of shooting isn’t spent deciding angles and such. Just prep, light and shoot. Very doable, but it’s going to take a lot of planning – not to mention a lot of work.