About The Production
When the star of your movie is an international singing sensation who isn't just booked in cities across the United States, but who's also performing in countries around the world, finding a window of opportunity to shoot a film is next to impossible. So, needless to say, fitting "Crossroads" into Spears' schedule was a bit of production magic.. .and the magician in charge was producer Ann
"We were definitely all on a very specific time schedule because just prior to coming to rehearsals Spears was in Sweden recording the songs that we hoped would be featured in the film," remembers Carli. "Then, three days before she was supposed to come to the set and be Lucy, she was scheduled to shoot a Pepsi commercial to air during the Super Bowl. I mean, it was crazy.
Happily, the parameters of Spears' busy schedule were negotiated and director Tamra Davis set to work with Carli by her side for nearly every day of the shoot. From the start, according to the cast and crew, "collaborative" and "comfortable" were the two best words to describe the atmosphere on the set.
"Tamra's directorial style is like flannel pajamas, sort of warm and fuzzy," Carli says. "She actually became like a girlfriend to these young actors. At the same time, she was very centered and secure about her work, and so democratic. She knows what she wants, but she's confident enough about her own vision to listen to other
Speaking from the point of view of someone who knows what it's like to be pulled in several directions at once, Britney Spears found herself in awe of Davis' attention to detail.
I have so much respect for her," says Spears. "There's so many things she has to think about, and that's hard to do when nine million people — from the crew, to the wardrobe department, to the actors — are asking you questions."
Spears also appreciates the way Davis stuck to a teenager's really and how she was so open to amending a line that didn't feel right.
"She was so cool about letting us change things if we felt uncomfortable about what a teenager might really say," remembers Spears.
Because of the nature of the film, much of mc shoot was spent on the road traveling to and from the four location sites — New Orleans, Los Angeles,
Palmdale, California and Hammond, Louisiana, approximately 40 minutes outside of Spears'
hometown of Kentwood. In fact, according to director Davis, some of the most important and most difficult scenes took place in the car.
"I got a lot of experience directing driving shots when I did "Guncrazy," so I know the process well," says Davis. "Actually, it's kind of complicated to get close-up shots in a moving vehicle, but you need them in order to see an actor's gestures and to hear conversations. You also need them to achieve a feeling of intimacy that makes the shot work. So what we did was we put the actors and the car they're supposedly driving on a process trailer, or flatbed. This allows my crew to light the actors and position cameras wherever we need to get the best angle."
Davis, then, is in the vehicle pulling the trailer, and she keeps tabs on everything by watching the actors on a monitor, and communicating with them via walkie-talkies.
"It takes a lot of film to shoot these scenes," says Davis. "You see, it's kind of hard to pull over with an entire crew and tons of police riding in front and in back of you.
Another challenge of shooting a road picture, according to Davis, is that rarely is the crew shooting a scene in the actual place that's supposed to be depicted. For example, Palmdale stood in for Arizona, and the karaoke bar in New Orleans was actually a nightclub in a Los Angeles.
To achieve that "cheat," Davis says she scouted out bars in New Orleans to<
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