The great thing about learning on-the-job is that it gives you a crash-course in learning not only how things are done, but also how industry people talk. This is something Film Connection apprentice Daniel Outhier is learning firsthand as he apprentices with Joel Gonzalez of Think Dreamer Productions. Working on the set of his mentor’s upcoming film “Crave: The Fast Life,” Daniel had to learn a whole new jargon as the crew communicated with each other over the walkie-talkies, which inspired him to create a fun mini-glossary of on-set lingo on his blog. We’ve shared a few key excerpts with you below.
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I initially found myself overwhelmed on the Crave set, partly due to the unfamiliar jargon people were throwing around over walkie. As a courtesy to others who may find themselves in the same boat, here’s a primer on common set jargon:
10: Bathroom. Generally stated as either “10-1” or “10-2”, corresponding to what you’re doing in there.
Breakdown: The process of stowing all the shoot’s equipment for overnight storage, for transport to a new location, or for return to owners after a shoot.
Call time: The time you’re expected to be on set.
Crafty: Craft services. [The department that provides food/drink to the set.]
Eyes on: Phrased as either a question or a response, it means someone is either looking for, or has found, someone or something. Example: “Anyone have eyes on our director?” “Yeah, I got eyes on him, he’s at crafty.” If someone asks for eyes on and you DON’T see it, you respond with “negative at (your location).”
Firewatch: During lunch, when everyone else is at crafty, one person needs to stay and keep an eye on set, on the P.O., and any other location with equipment that could get damaged or stolen. This is generally done in shifts and you’ll have a couple minutes to grab food before heading over to relieve whoever’s “last man” still on set.
Fly, flying: Fetch, move, transport; on the move. When phrased as a request (as in “I need someone to fly in a Coke for the director”), there’s an implied “on the double.” Also a handy way to buy time if you make a mistake: “Where’s that Coke?” “Flying in, but I ran into some issues on the way.” At which point you run and grab the Coke that you completely forgot about in the rush to do 20 other things.
Go to 2: Switch walkie channels to 2. Can be used with channels besides 2. This is generally used for longer conversations that would tend to clutter up the main channel.
Land: Something or someone that has just finished flying has landed or is landing. Also used when equipment, talent or crew arrives on location.
Lockup: This is when you’re assigned to stand (or sit, if you’re lucky) in an area and yell “Rolling” and “Cut” when those calls go out over walkie, in order to inform anyone who doesn’t have a walkie/is on a different channel.
P.A. Nation: Every single P.A. is being addressed. Pay attention.
P.O.: Production Office. This is the shoot’s home base, where you’ll likely be stashing your backpack, purse, jacket, etc. as well as where all the computers will be set up. The line producer will likely be here most of the time and the director, DP, producer, 1st AD, 2nd AD, and 2nd 2nd (answers to 2ndAD and is above Key PA) will all probably be in and out of here.
Points!: Someone is carrying heavy, bulky, and/or expensive equipment, so look out and give them space. It’s generally helpful to repeat this so people get advance warning.
Taillights: The time everyone needs to be off set.
Turnaround: Camera and lighting equipment are being moved in order to shoot the current scene from another angle.
What’s your 20?: Where are you?
Thanks, Daniel, for the “crafty” “breakdown” of on-set lingo. It was “fly!” (Umm…did we get that right?)