CCC Training Day

CCC Training Day

April 22, 2023 A Chicago Coordinating Committee Event

On April 22, Assistant Directors, Location Managers and Assistant Location Managers in the greater Chicago area were invited to learn more about their craft when the Chicago Coordinating Committee (CCC) presented CCC Training Day. The two-part live event was designed to provide training and insights on several key job-related duties.


How to Prepare Yourself to Move Up — Assistant Directors Session

CCC Training DayThe event began with a welcome from UPM/CCC Co-Chair Rich Lederer (Power Book IV: Force). who spoke about the Committee’s efforts towards building, strengthening and supporting the Chicago DGA community through professional development and member support. He then welcomed the attendees to the first session of the day, How to Prepare Yourself to Move Up, a discussion dedicated to the craft of the Assistant Director that covered the skills needed to survive and thrive in this category.

Moderated by Lederer, the discussion featured 1st ADs Chris De Angelis (Chicago Fire), Jason Dusenske (Dark Matter) and Stefan Rand (Power Book IV: Force) and 2nd AD Noemi Afflack (Chicago P.D.) who began the conversation by revealing how they got into the Guild and how they were able to move up over the years.

During the section on set etiquette the panel discussed subjects including time management issues such as what ADs need to look out for and what needs to be issues communicated to the UPM; how they put the timeline for the day together; creating culture by setting a positive work environment that keeps the crew motivated and gets the job done; and what works best in order to get information to the cast and crew such as defusing situations, asserting yourself confidently and realizing that every mistake is an opportunity.

The conversation then turned to union rules such as dealing with IATSE; where to find the most up to date SAG rules; what to look out for when dealing with stunt players; and how to look out for turnaround issues in advance.

The paperwork section covered generating the Production Report and topics like knowing who to call is something is incorrect and how to protect your staff; actor’s timecards; call sheets; and being able to jump in for your Key 2nd.

The final segment of the Assistant Directors conversation dealt with how technology is being used today with production apps such as Scriptation and Notes App; text chains; and when is technology not useful.

During the conversation, the panelists also fielded questions from the audience and an email of resources was sent to all attendees after the event that included: SAG rules, child labor laws, and more.


Location Managers Session

CCC Training DayFollowing a short break, the day continued with the second session of the day which covered the key job-related duties of Location Managers and Assistant Location Managers. Also moderated by Lederer, the panel included Location Managers Adam Boor (Night Sky), Alex Hughes (The 4400), Nick Rafferty (Dark Matter) and Monoleto Wilborn (Chicago Fire) who gave insights into the skills needed to get the job done.

After prefacing the discussion with background on the history of location management along with information about the rate structure, QL requirements and introducing DGA Field Rep Brett Wise, the DGA staffer tasked with overseeing the Chicago area, Lederer dove into the next segment of the conversation that covered the responsibilities of an Assistant Location Manager, the skills needed to excel at the job and the expectations a Location Manager might have of an Assistant Location Manager.

The panelists imparted wisdom gained from years on the job and offered advice such as how coordinating with prep/wrap departments is crucial; not to wait for information, but rather go find it; and never say “yes” when what you mean is “hopefully.” They also covered topics covering the other end of the equation with the skills that are important to excel as Location Managers including scouting and the van; how it’s vital to remember that failing to delegate tasks can be fatal; and what UPM’s look for in Location Managers.

Moving on to the Assistant Director/Location Manager relationship, the panelists stressed the importance of building strong communication with the 2nd AD; spoke about working with the Assistant Directors in running the set on location; and revealed how to prepare for a logistics meeting.

The final segment covered film offices and community relations where the panelists spoke about the best ways Assistant Location Managers can interact with the Chicago Film Office; how recurring locations can pose a unique challenge for community relations; and how it’s important to be conscious of changes in the neighborhood such as nearby construction projects, summer street fests and schools. They also covered how locations people should adjust their approach to meet the challenges of filming in the suburbs such as interacting with the town directly by being clear about when you want to film and asking how it went if filming occurred there in the past; and remembering that some services such as suburban police departments and fire departments may be limited in their availability.


ABOUT THE PANELISTS:

Rich LedererCCC Co-Chair Richard Lederer (moderator both sessions)
A member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee since 2006, Lederer was first elected to the Co-Chair post in 2008 and went on to serve two terms. His UPM credits include nearly 100 episodes of the series Empire, as well as episodes of Power Book IV: Force, BetrayalThe Playboy ClubThe Chicago Code and George Tillman Jr.’s movie for television Love Is a Four-Letter Word. Lederer has been a member of the DGA since 1994. 

 

Assistant Director Session Panelists 

 
Chris DeAngelis1st AD Chris De Angelis
Angelis’s Assistant Director credits include nearly 90 episodes of Chicago Fire; as well as features such as Amy Heckerling’s Vamps, M. Night Shyamalan’s The Happening, Kevin Connolly’s Gardener of Eden and James Foley’s Perfect Stranger; and episodes of TremeTrue Blood and Gossip Girl. He has been a DGA member since 2005. 
 
Jason Dusenke1st AD Jason Dusenske
Dusenske’s Assistant Director credits include feature films such as Matt Reeves’s The Batman, Tyler Christensen’s House of Purgatory and Joe Swanberg’s Digging for Fire; and episodes of Dark MatterPaper GirlsNextProven InnocentBetrayal and Empire. Dusenske has been a DGA member since 2013 and serves as a member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee. 
 
Stefan Rand1st AD Stefan Rand
Rand’s Assistant Director credits include over 100 episodes of Chicago Fire; as well as episodes of Paper GirlsPower Book IV: ForceBig SkyBossShamelessThe Playboy ClubThe Chicago CodeThe Beast and A Nightmare on Elm Street. He has been a DGA member since 2007 and serves as a member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee. 
 

Noemi Afflack2nd AD Noemi Afflack
Afflack’s Assistant Director credits include episodes of Chicago P.D., Power Book IV: Force, Night Sky and Hot Mess Holiday. She became a DGA member in 2021. 

 

Location Managers Session Panelists 

 
Monleto Wilborn1st AD Monoleto Wilborn
Wilborn’s Location Manager credits include nearly 80 episodes of Chicago Fire as well as features such as Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq, Lana & Lilly Wachowski’s Jupiter Ascending and Tim Story’s Barbershop; and episodes of Sense8The Chicago CodeCrisis and Prison Break. He has been a DGA member since 2001 and has served as a member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee. 
 
Adam Boor2nd AD Adam Boor
Boor’s Location Manager credits include features such as Matt Reeves’s The Batman, Steve McQueen’s Widows and Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice; as well as episodes of Night SkyChicago MedSuperstoreEmpireLovecraft Country and Next. He has been a DGA member since 2012 and serves as a member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee.  
 
Alex Hughes2nd AD Alex Hughes
Hughes’s Location Manager credits include feature films such as Aaron Sorkin’s DGA Award-nominated The Trial of the Chicago and movies for television such as Andy Fickman’s Christmas Again; as well as episodes of The 4400FargoSaturdaysSouth Side and The Chi. He has been a DGA member since 2017 and has served as a member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee. 
 
Nick Rafferty2nd AD Nick Rafferty
Rafferty’s Location Manager credits include feature films such as Nia DaCosta’s Candyman, Steve McQueen’s Widows and Aaron Sorkin’s DGA Award-nominated The Trial of the Chicago 7; movies for television such as Thomas Schlamme’s Doubt; and episodes of Dark MatterPaper GirlsFargoChicago P.D., The Mob DoctorBossThe Playboy Club and CSI: NY. Rafferty has been a DGA member since 2011 and serves as a member of the Chicago Coordinating Committee. 
 

About the Committee:

The Chicago Coordinating Committee was formed in the mid-1960s to coordinate Guild activities in the Chicago Area, including acting as liaison between members and the Guild, disseminating information, and promoting public awareness of the Guild. The Committee is Co-Chaired by Director Thomas Wekony, Jr. and UPM Richard S. Lederer.

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