Friday, June 29, 2012

The Actors Have Landed

The Pilot is here.

"This is gonna take crackerjack timing, H. Let's blow this scene. Get everybody and the stuff together. Ok? Three,two,one..."

Hello, acting fans, and welcome back to the Blog. As once said by the great Orson Welles “Films are not finished, they escape” which is true of what we have in store for you today. This one got away.

Let’s get straight to it; it is a BIG day here at the H&H production, yes ,the pilot episode is up and alive. Alive I tell you, ALIIIIIVE!!
It’s been a long hard road, path, hill. dale, and river, oh, and lake. Through clouds both physical and metaphorical (flippin' Yorkshire weather). Wow, I mean it’s been two years (well, about that) from conception to getting this done but the first fruits of our labour has paid off, dropping straight off that tree and we have the first full episode! The Pilot has landed! Oh yeah, Groovy.

We do spoil you lot but don’t worry we are busy working on the rest of the episodes and they will be following shortly.

Me, myself and my co-creator and co-actor Christopher Haigh, really do all sincerely hope that you enjoy the Premiere Episode of 'Harcourt & Haigh: Actors at Large', and that you find it funny.
If you do indeed find yourself laughing at least one sock even half off then please feel free to post it, send it, show it to any one you think will like it. Tell all (and maybe even sundry) about it and then get them to do the same. Ppppplease, pretty please actors cannot live on bread alone - we need booze too, and Views, Lots of Views!
Post it to anywhere that you think other people will like it. Heck, shout about it from the hilltops if you like, with a BIG Thank you from us, H&H ourselves.

Well, that’s our Blog for now until the next time sit tight, hold the fort and keep the home fires
burning. And if we’re not back next Wednesday…………. Well, erm, call us on it.


Vernon Harcourt

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Locating, Locating

A fine Wednesday welcome to you, Acting Fans, time for the latest from H&H Headquarters. We're still made up with our new camera but, unfortunately, a confluence of events has led us to not be able to get filming recently. Our prospective filming schedule ended up clashing with some well-deserved time off for Vern's flatmates. Not wanting to inconvenience the folk who have so generously permitted us to film where they are co-habitating with Vern, we've been up to some more planning and sketching out of the filming of further episodes.
To that end last week I took my fellow co-creator on a fair trek to the outskirts of Halifax town centre for a spot of location scouting. A bout of location scouting that turned into a wild goose chase or, in this case, a wild pub chase.
A gag in one of the later episodes calls for a Public House that appears somewhat isolated and I was sure that there was a possibly-suitable pub on the way to Southowram (or as sure of the possibility as one can be from a half-remembered fairly eventful works Christmas do from the mid-90s, yes, alcohol was involved). We began with a leisurely stroll to the bottom of town and, by the time we reached the bottom of Southowram Bank, we had already decided on one location (for a different scene), thanks to the suitably industrial-looking rear of a local retail building.
Then came the more arduous part of our trail - the slog up the steep cobbled path through the woods up to Godley Branch Road. We got there up there and, after a brief pause (just until we could feel our calves again), made our way along Beacon Hill Road to Bank Top.
Still no sign of my half-remembered mystery pub but we did get a rather lovely vista of Halifax that may feature at some point in the series (and that I briefly lost Vern to for a while, he was totally immersed, bless him). From Bank Top we took Southowram Bank back down to the bottom of town and still nary a trace of our elusive Public House, so our best theories are it's either closed down in the mean time, maybe turned into housing, maybe demolished or it's some kind of Brigadoon Pub that only appears when the moon is in the right phase. Still, not a total waste of time and effort as we did sort a couple of other things and we got a bit of exercise to boot (we need it, we don't get out much).
Stay tuned for this Friday, folks, as the Pilot Episode is still about to drop - so keep your peepers peeled!


Christopher Haigh

Friday, June 22, 2012

Coming Up

Greetings, Acting Fans, and welcome to this felicitous Friday. Now you may look out of your window, see the rain lashing down outside (unless you're unlucky enough to be out in it so you can feel it too) and think, what's so good about THIS Friday? Apart from the usual 'here comes the weekend' stuff, that is. Can you feel that? That something else, something in the air, a strange build up? And no, I don't mean a sudden seasonal thunderstorm. The game's afoot!
Let me tell you, loyal blog followers, as the British Summer Time does it's usual best at letting us down and dampening the old ardour (literally as well as metaphorically) we here at H&H Productions have decided to lighten things up by bring a little metaphorical sunshine into your lives and it's all to do with that BIG something our resident Big Teaser, one Mr. Vernon Harcourt, mentioned in the previous post. Today we bring you the first of those two surprises, in the form of this short trailer for the Upcoming Pilot Episode of 'Harcourt & Haigh: Actors at Large' which will look a little something like this:

That's right, Acting Fans, you've read correctly - the Pilot Episode of 'Harcourt & Haigh' goes live in exactly ONE....WEEK'S....TIME! EEK!
Can you contain yourselves? Can WE contain ourselves? Can the Internet possibly contain US?
To find out all the answers to those questions and more tune in next week to find out! Same H-Time! Same H-Channel!


Christopher Haigh

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Testing 1,2...1,2

Hello, Acting Fans, it’s Wednesday blog time so here is what we have been dong since the last time you checked in.
Well, the new camera (Panasonic DMC-FZ150) has arrived here at the H&H production office yesterday. We have been playing around with it since and we have to say we are so very much pleased with the camera - it is, in a word, AWESOMETACULAR!!
Oh, yes, it is indeed. We have tried it with both the in-built stereo mic on board and our external mic jacked in with a 2.5mm-to-3.5mm adapter and, let's just say, so many more options are open to us now. I really can’t fault this camera. At all. In fact I think, I think I may be in love.
nd, just for you lot out there (we do spoil you), here is some of the test footage from this week. This is piece of steady cam-style test footage all done free hand with the camera mounted on the closed tripod, with me manning the camera and my limber co-creator acting as test subject.

One more thing - this something BIG which gonna happen, well my dear Acting Fans, all I'm gonna say for now is it WILL be worth the wait and all of this build up to it and now we might just have to give TWO surprises, we sure do spoil you lot, don’t we.

So that’s it for today I'm off to play with the camera some more, as always keep the home fires burning and we'll be back real soon...


Vernon Harcourt

Friday, June 15, 2012

We Have A Winnah!

We are back in business!
ello, Acting Fans, it’s Friday and time, once again, for a new blog/update of the ongoing events at H&H productions HQ.
What’s happened since we last spoke (um, I mean read or is it mebbe wrote)? After much debate, lots of on and offline research, juggling of finances, begging, scraping, scrabbling, scouring the pockets of our spare trousers and looking down the back of the sofa, we have got some additional fundage together and at last decided on the camera that we are getting, and gone and got it!

It's the Panasonic Lumix FZ150 and should be on it’s merry way to the H&H offices soon, Amazon be praised. We did some research on it and it seemed the best camera for us (at an affordable price for our Lo-to-No Budget) and it does everything that we want it to and, maybe (fings crossed), a little bit more too. It may not be the Canon 550D we had our hearts set on but with the Lumix we don't have to settle for a reconditioned unit to keep the cost down, we can invest in a spanking new camera with warranty, and it's ours - ALL OURS! MWAH HA HA HA *Ahem* Even though it's not a DSLR like the Canon (it's what you might call a high-end bridge camera) it produces the quality of video image we require and it has an external mic socket (the only camera in it's price range we've found that does) as well as it's own stereo mic. We just had to get a 2.5mm-to-3.5mm jack adapter for the external mic socket so we will be able to connect our own external mic up to it, and it is done! So, Groovy, the series can once again commence onwards.


But, wait, wait, wait - hold on! There's more to come here……We are starting our official count down to SOMETHING BIG as of…oooof…ooooof…ooooooooooof…
NOW! Yes, we do in fact spoil you but this time it really is BIG, and when I say big I mean BIG. Bigger than any mere Promo or Trailer  - So what is it? I hear you cry, well, well, my dear, darling Acting Fans there will be more on that later.

Oooh, I am SUCH a tease.

Until next time keep the home fires burning and we’ll be back!


Vernon Harcourt

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Shop Around

Hello, Acting Fans, welcome back we’ve missed you. So you may be wondering what have we been up to?
Today here at H&H production, well, we haven't been here at all today - we went out and did some Retail Therapy (Retail Therapy on a Lo-to-No Budget? Yep, window shopping)!

What were we out looking for? Costume? Yet more props? Gullible impoverished actors?
Nope, something far more important but what can be more important than the above mentioned?

Wishing on a falling star...

"I know how to make an entrance!"

"Too literal? Nahhhh."

"Wow, These Alarm cords are really sensitive! Honest officer, just ask the shop manager. Where is he? Oh, he's a bit tied up at the mo."
Yes, Acting Fans we were out scouring for information on a potential new camera after the last one died on us (it is an ex-camera, it videos with the choir celestial). And we can’t show you the show without a camera to record it with - I mean it would have to be some sort of live show or something and that woul……… Hang on a minute, hmm, maybe that’s not such a bad idea.

So, erm, anyhoo as always stay classily,


Vernon Harcourt

Friday, June 8, 2012


Hello, Acting Fans, we're BACK! Well it's Friday so what’s been happening in the office of H&H Productions. Well, I’ll be your captain, come follow me through my words.

irst thing first is that since our catastrophic technical failure what have taken some time to take stock of what we have done so far with this production, and if you've been keeping up with the blog you should know but if not, tut tut, you bad people, you *Wags finger*.
Well, we have had our ups and downs but mainly ups though, as shown by the five trailers we've managed to get up on the H&H YouTube channel. We have some of the stock footage done and in the can, now I know what you thinking, the stock footage should be done by the second unit. And yes you’d be right on that is one of their jobs but, well, we can’t afford to have a second unit, that and we are only two guys filming, sometimes three if we're lucky and on one sequence a whole 6 people (Woo!). I mean we are a Lo-to-No-budget series. We are ALL the Units! The pilot episode is done and is now ready and waiting to go live which will be soon, dear Acting Fans, sooooooon (Date TBA).

And moving on to the present, after having a very long and quite intense rehearsal, I think we are ready to start to film the next episode. Trust me, when you see this episode, you’ll understand why it took some much rehearsing. (Or maybe not if we do it right) And, as always, when I and my fellow actor/co-creator get together we always end up thinking up and adding new ideas to the mix of the episodes. Making some of the sequences a bit longer if needed, tweaking the dialogue here and there and making them a bit more funny (Trust me I always know it’s gonna be good when Chris takes ages to tell me from laughing).
o the next for us to do get our thinking caps on for brainstorming what we do next:
How should we source another camera to replace the broken down one? When do we get on and film the next episode? We'll also start the planning and rehearsing the next next episode to be filmed, see if what we wrote does in fact work and what needs to be changed if it doesn't. And get on with the storyboards, too. Much thinking will ensue.

Wow, is that the time? I’d best get back to it, see the Future!


Vernon Harcourt

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Oh The Humanity!

The humanity!

Hello, Acting Fans, and welcome back, boy, do we have some news to report this week. And not just our usual stuff lately of hang-on-we've-got-stuff-in-the-works-going-on.
What is it I hear you cry? Well, me and my Acting-Buddy-&-Co-Star Chris had an all planned out shoot for today. We were going to film a major part of the third episode (why the third? And why aren’t we filming the second next? More on these question much later on, i.e. not on this blog entry, mate. No, I'm not calling you a moron!) But, yep, as you may have guessed by the world “were” it didn't go quite according to plan - so what we went wrong? Well, todays attempt at a shoot went something like this:

Not exactly like that, obviously, as no zeppelins or hydrogen were involved (being a Lo-to-No Budget series we can't afford them) it was however like the above in that we had a major technological breakdown!
The camera, after being used many times in the previous shoots and working fine, stopped working. In the later stage of the Pilot shoot we had had a few glitches in the footage but it seemed there was a chance that judicious use of a head-cleaning tape would stop the problem. Unfortunately now the heads appear to not be working right at all, the video camera doesn’t want to play back anything we film, although testing the tapes in our back-up camcorder revealed it was actually recording but just heavily corrupted footage. (Man, we just have all the luck, don’t we?)
But, hurrah, some good news not all was lost from the shoot we did go out (with our trusty backup Emergency Camera, AKA Chris's Dad's Camcorder) and hung around the Calder Royal Hospital to get some stock footage of an ambulance for the Episode [SPOILERS] later on in the series. As we chased ambulances by not moving we ran through the lines for the episode that we were originally going to film today. Only to then almost miss our cue while doing so, when mid-flow a sirens-and-all ambulance showed up but luckily, thanks to my quick reactions (and the camcorder booting up just-in-time to catch it before it passed us), we got it the can. Groovy. We returned with our prize, and a little additional improvised outdoor stock footage, back to Chez Vern for a cool drink and a final line run - the dialogue's shaping up pretty well. Now we take stock and, yes, plan some more (always with the planning) what to do.

Until next time, which is Friday in case you don’t know,


Vernon Harcourt

Friday, June 1, 2012

The Plan of Plans

Hello, Acting Fans, and welcome back for the Friday’s blog and what has happened since Wednesday's blog well, erm, to be honest nothing (whoops), Tee hee. Chris has been working on his 'Producer' credit by earning his daily (well, Part-Time really) crust with his nose to the grindstone at his day (and occasionally night) job, these Lo-to-No-Budget productions don't finance themselves, you know, and those ridiculously proportioned burgers don't come cheap.
We're still putting a cunning plan into action, it's so cunning in fact that even Baldric, nay, the Blackadder himself would be impressed by the cunningness this cunning plan - cunning like a fox in socks sneaking up on a chicken box with a forged key for the locks.

And what is it? Well I'm afraid I can’t tell you that as we could be getting into [SPOILERS], I’ll just give you a hint it involves us (well, duh) and a gun or two, some swords, a sickle sythe and some duvets!
No, no, no, nothing 'kinky'! Mind you, you never know what will turn up in Fan Fiction, alright then - nothing 'kinky' in Canon that is.
What could it all mean? What is going to happening with all of this? And have I been up drinking all night again or have I just lost the plot. No, wait, the plot's right here where I left it on the coffee table, I told you we were getting more organised.
Well, acting fans and blog readers, tune in time to the H&H channel to find out what is going up.


Vernon Harcourt