Meet the Crew: Sean Mannion – Prop Master

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Sean Mannion on the set of Aloha. Dec., 2013. Picture courtesy of Andy Fischer. © 2015 The Uncool.

Sean Mannion on the set of Aloha. Dec., 2013. Picture courtesy of Andy Fischer. © 2015 The Uncool.

Sean Mannion has been working in the film industry for twenty-five years. His career began in the late eighties and includes all types of genres. His resume includes working extensively with filmmakers such as Judd Apatow and recent Marvel hits like Thor 2: Dark World and Guardians of the Galaxy. Aloha is his first film with Cameron. 

Tell us your breaking in story…

I was a Production Assistant (PA) and my very first job was to sit on a generator beneath an overpass. I was directed to jump up and down, yell and wave at cars coming around a blind bend to get them to avoid hitting the generator. I spent twelve hours on the generator. Twelve hours of jumping up and down and waving. The shooting crew was shooting above, on top of the overpass. When lunch was called, they made me stay down there to keep protecting the generator. They sent my lunch down to me in a bucket dropped by a rope. I continued to wave with sandwich in hand. As I ate my cold sandwich, I thought, “Well, no place to go but up.”

You’ve worked on quite a few of Apatow’s productions (The 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up, Funny PeopleBridesmaids, etc.). What was that experience like?

Working on an Apatow film is like working with family. A family that talks about vulgar things all the time. Judd does have an incredible loyalty to his people so the great thing is we get to work with the same people from film to film. It really is like a family. And we laugh a lot all day. The stuff on those sets are very funny. Tough to keep it together sometimes during takes.

This is your first Cameron Crowe film, right?

Yes. This is my first Cameron Crowe film where I’m not seated in a dark theater eating popcorn and milk duds.

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Vanilla Sky Deleted Scenes

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In celebration of the upcoming Vanilla Sky Blu-ray, we will be sharing (for the first time), a scene extension or deleted scene from the Vanilla Sky shooting script a few times each day.  Some of this will be seen on the upcoming Blu-ray, while others will remain exclusive to the script. We hope you like them.

David and Julie (Extended)

Sofia Introduction (Extended)

Be Real

Career Advice

Dr. Pomeranz (Extended)

eBooks (Extended)

Great Sex

Two Daughters

Welcome to Life Extension (Extended)

L.E. Bathroom

Alternate Ending

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Meet the Crew: Jeff Wexler – Production Sound Mixer

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Jeff on the set of Elizabethtown. Picture courtesy of Jeff Wexler.

Jeff Wexler has been working in the film industry since he was an intern on Harold and Maude back in 1971.  His career spans more than four decades with such varied films as Foul Play, Being There, The Natural, Spaceballs, Independence Day, Fight Club and Mission Impossible III. We spoke on location working on his sixth film with Cameron, Aloha. 

Looking back on your 40 year career in the film industry, I read that you had no plans to follow in your dad’s footsteps (preeminent cinematographer Haskell Wexler). Tell us how working a summer job on Hal Ashby’s Harold and Maude changed your life?

I had been on sets with my father probably since about the age of two. I was very familiar with what goes on when making a movie but when I started to think about what I would do “when I grow up” it never crossed my mind that I would work on movies. I spent 5 years in college preparing to teach sociology at the college level. One summer I think my father felt that I had been in school long enough and needed a summer job. Of course he got me a job on a movie, working as a production assistant in the Art Department on Harold and Maude. I had known Hal Ashby from times spent going to dailies with my father, visiting the editing room (Hal was an Academy Award winning editor on several movies my father had shot), so I was quite comfortable on the set again, with people I knew. What I was not prepared for was how I felt, for the first time, being on a movie, not as a visitor but as a participant. I fell in love with the movies. When the movie wrapped I made the decision: teaching was out — I would pursue a career working on movies.

Describe to our readers the duties of a Sound Mixer?

I am a Production Sound Mixer and it is the responsibility, with my crew, for all the sound that is recorded during production. This is primarily dialog recording, but we also record sound effects, ambiences, music (sometimes live performances depending on the movie). Many others will work on the soundtrack for a movie in post production (i.e. sound designer, sound editorial, foley, music composer, re-recording mixer, etc.) but the production sound recordings are the primary and fundamental basis for the movie.

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Aloha – Complete Soundtrack Listing

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In addition to already released soundtrack, we thought you might like to see the entire soundtrack listing for Aloha. If the movie hasn’t arrived in your country yet, you might want to avoid this list if you’d like to be surprised. We’ve also excluded the songs featured during the “Satellite” sequence, so you can identify those snippets yourself!

  • “Mele Pule Ho‘ola No Hi‘iaka” Traditional – James Kapihe
  • “Hanohano Hanalei” – Alfred K. Alohikea
  • “Cool People Make Me Tired” – Williamson
  • “I Can See For Miles” – The Who
  • “Ipo Lei Manu” – Cyril Pahinui
  • “Hawaii Sing To Me” – Andy Iona and his Islanders
  • “Taps” Traditional
  • “Kids and Dogs” – David Crosby
  • “Factory Girl” – The Rolling Stones
  • “Aloha ‘Oe” Traditional – (Written by Queen Lili’uokalani)
  • “Love Like This” – Kodaline
  • “A Field of Birds” (Live at KEXP) – The Tallest Man on Earth
  • “Te No‘o Nei Au” Traditional – Robi Kahakalau Featuring George “Fiji” Veikoso
  • “Hawaii Uke Sinfony Mix” – Jónsi
  • “You and Jake” – Evening Hymns
  • “An Island Melody” -Andy Iona and His Islanders
  • “Slack Key Lullaby” (Live at Maki’s Studio)  – Ledward Kaapana
  • “No Name Slack Key” – Ledward Kaapana
  • “Waimānalo Blues” – Ledward Kaapana
  • “Nū ‘Oli” – George Kahumoku Jr.
  • “Au‘a ‘Ia E Kama E Kona Moku” Traditional – Keaka Kanahele
  • “Lei Hinahina” – John Kameaaloha
  • “Take My Advice” – Kurt Vile
  • “Blue Christmas” – Elvis Presley
  • “Witchi Tai To” – Harpers Bizarre
  • “Naughty Hula Eyes” – Andy Iona and His Islanders
  • “E Ho‘i I Ka Pili” – George Kahumoku Jr.
  • “Silent Night” Traditional
  • “Outstanding” – The Gap Band
  • “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” – Tears For Fears
  • “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)” – Daryl Hall & John Oates
  • “Vapour” – Vancouver Sleep Clinic
  • “I Know I’m Not Wrong” – Fleetwood Mac
  • “Tropical Swing” – Bobby Ingano
  • “Come and Find Me” – Josh Ritter
  • “Let’s Go Out Tonight” – The Blue Nile
  • “The Wheels On The Bus” Traditional
  • “Always Gold” – Radical Face
  • “Wittgenstein’s Arm” – Neil Halstead
  • I’ll Weave A Lei of Stars For You – The Royal Hawaiian Serenaders
  • “Medley Of Old Time Waltzes” (“My Wild Irish Rose” / “Good Old Summer Time” / “Sweet Rosie O’Grady”) – Walter Kolomoku’s Honoluluans Hawaiian Orchestra
  • “Phase” – Beck
  • “Heart Is A Drum” – Beck
  • “Shooting Stars” – Jónsi & Alex
  • “The Traveler” – Harper Vedder

 

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Hi’ilawe: Notes From Oahu

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Here’s some nice behind-the-scenes footage shot in pre-production and during the making of Aloha, set to slack key master Ledward Kaapana’s soulful rendition of the Hawaiian standard “Hi’ilawe”. The warmth and open arms with which we were received in Hawaii is something we will never forget. Mahalo to all our friends back on the islands!!

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The Awe Of Space

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“I sometimes think with all the discussion of hardware and weaponized-tech if we’ve lost a little bit of the wonder of space — the magic of just looking upward, into the unknown.  I love this old footage from the dawn of space exploration.  It’s filled with giddy romance and the promise of what’s to come.  And it’s also a real tribute to the NASA scientists, technicians, and astronauts … the 20th Century pioneers who pushed every boundary and reached further than our wildest dreams could have imagined…”

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A Comment on Allison Ng

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From the very beginning of its appearance in the Sony Hack, “Aloha” has felt like a misunderstood movie. One that people felt they knew a lot about, but in fact they knew very little. It was a small movie, made by passionate actors who wanted to join me in making a film about Hawaii, and the lives of these characters who live and work in and around the island of Oahu.

Thank you so much for all the impassioned comments regarding the casting of the wonderful Emma Stone in the part of Allison Ng. I have heard your words and your disappointment, and I offer you a heart-felt apology to all who felt this was an odd or misguided casting choice. As far back as 2007, Captain Allison Ng was written to be a super-proud ¼ Hawaiian who was frustrated that, by all outward appearances, she looked nothing like one.  A half-Chinese father was meant to show the surprising mix of cultures often prevalent in Hawaii.  Extremely proud of her unlikely heritage, she feels personally compelled to over-explain every chance she gets. The character was based on a real-life, red-headed local who did just that.

Whether that story point felt hurtful or humorous has been, of course, the topic of much discussion. However I am so proud that in the same movie, we employed many Asian-American, Native-Hawaiian and Pacific-Islanders, both before and behind the camera… including Dennis “Bumpy” Kanahele, and his village, and many other locals who worked closely in our crew and with our script to help ensure authenticity.

We were extremely proud to present the island, the locals and the film community with many jobs for over four months. Emma Stone was chief among those who did tireless research, and if any part of her fine characterization has caused consternation and controversy, I am the one to blame.

I am grateful for the dialogue. And from the many voices, loud and small, I have learned something very inspiring. So many of us are hungry for stories with more racial diversity, more truth in representation, and I am anxious to help tell those stories in the future.

Thanks again

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Aloha – What Did You Think?

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It’s finally here. Aloha sees a wide release in North America today. Please share your thoughts here once you’ve seen the film. We will read all your comments and appreciate your feedback.

Please be respectful. Any inflammatory comments or profanity will result in your post being deleted. Please understand there will be spoilers in the comments too. thanks!

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