Tag: callsheet

Birthday Quiz for the Call Sheet

hbdayAn alternative to the call sheet joke is the “Birthday Quiz“. Beyond just adding famous names born on the day on the call sheet… take a step further to a quiz.

1. Select a diverse group of famous names (performers, authors, musicians, scientists, explorers, etc.) that were born on the day of the call sheet

2. Challenge the crew to figure out why each of them is famous

3. Publish the answers on the following day

Here are a couple of sites that can help you generate the Birthday Quiz List:



So… for today (April 8), a special happy birthday to Gladys Marie Smith! And here’s a quotation from her:

“The past cannot be changed. The future is yet in your power.”

Cheers & a good shoot to you,

Peace and Goodness for the Season

Pick up a newspaper and you’ll see there’s a lot of bad news in the world every day. No wonder we enjoy jokes on the callsheet. So how about some good news?


Happynews.com has news bites broken down into many categories, including “Arts & Entertainment“.

Dailygood.org has both news and articles (I especially like the article: “Why Creative Thinking is Inclusive Thinking“).

You can even drop by these sites and be inspired enough to share some of the good news and good feelings on the callsheet (in addition to or instead of the traditional callsheet joke). If you do, remember to credit the source of your info; it’s good practice, and others may want to seek out more peace and goodness themselves.

So, may you have a wonder-filled holiday season and new year and may you also find peace in quiet moments.

Cheers and good shoot to you,

Ciné-surfer: Inspirational Quotations

Motivating Quotes.com : Dream Quotes have some great quotations of inspiration and thought-stimulation, especially about your dreams. George Lucas and Steven Speilberg are included in the list, as is John Barrymore and Jimminy Cricket (further down the list). My fav has to be Goethe’s… surf by and look it up.

ThinkExist.com boasts it has more than 300,000 quotations, so you can spend plenty of time here looking for the right inspiration you might need today. Their home page, however, displays quotations from people who were born today. Not all quotations are inspirational and motivational, but they’re bound to get you talking or thinking.

Might any of these quotations end up on a call sheet near you?

As a challenge game, you could include, say, 3 to 5 quotations and their 3 to 5 speakers… and then have the crew try to match the quotation with the speaker throughout the shoot day.

Cheers & a good shoot to you,

Weather or Not… A Call Sheet Dilemma

So you’re shooting in studio and the weather outside really doesn’t matter to the production or the crew. Do you just delete the weather forecast from the call sheet? You can… or you could take the opportunity to report on other weather forecasts that might be appropriate to the genre and tone of your production. For example, how about these ideas?

  • A fictional weather forecast for location in the script that day
  • Describe the weather inside the studio
  • A weather forecast for various cast or crew member’s favourite vacation destination
  • A weather forecast for random locations around the world

When you do include information on the call sheet that is along these “fun” lines, remember to be clear to the crew (the readers) that you are indeed having a bit of fun and that the information you’re including is not serious.

So, what weather-or-not ideas do you have?

Cheers & a sunny shoot to you (well, if it’s sun you want for the script!),

5 Great Sources for Call Sheet Jokes

How’s your call sheet joke file? Do you collect copies of comics, humour and interesting facts or solicit others to send you humour as they find it? I am a great believer of the call sheet joke.

When the next day’s call sheet is handed out at the end of the day – just watch – the crew typically takes note of their particular call time, and then turns the call sheet over to look for the call sheet joke. Often crew seek out the call sheet at the end of the day (motivated to read the latest call sheet joke) thereby making the A.D. job of distributing the call sheet a little easier.

Here’s your opportunity to match the tone of the production you’re on with the humour you supply. Go to doctor’s office, see medical humour. Go to a lawyer’s office, see legal humour. Film productions, however, visit many different locations and subject matter through the script. The are are many numerous genres and sub-genres. On a comedy, for example, you may want the call sheet humour to contribute to the light and playfulness of the story. A joke you would choose to share on the call sheet of a family film may not be the same one you would use on that of a horror film.

Luckily there are a host of sources from which to build your call sheet joke file. Here are five great ones:

1. Single frame jokes
This is the standard fare for call sheet jokes. Comics like The Far Side and Bizarro are great examples. Some folk re-caption the comic to more closely suit the production they’re on. You could even use Gladys Works In The Movies comics from this F.I.L.M. Blog.

2. Weird news (e.g. at: Canoe.ca/CNEWS/WeirdNews)
Amazing what shows up in the news! Fair warning, though: some items will make everyone laugh, whereas others will make some folk feel uncomfortable. Be selective.

3. Snopes.com
A site that researches and dispels urban myths. You can use these two days running, e.g. Day 1 = Myth #1; and then Day 2 = Answer #1 & Myth #2; etc.

4. User-submitted jokes (from the crew)
Open yourself up to contributions, and you could get a wide range of possibilities. At very least you will learn the humour style of some of the crew this way.

5. International weather
(e.g. at: World Weather Info Service or International Weather.com)

What? Weather for someplace you’re not shooting? This idea is useful when you’re shooting entirely in studio and the weather outside really doesn’t matter to you.

Keep in mind that humour can go too far. Jokes can be taken the wrong way. The call sheet joke lasts only a day, yes, but the document itself will be archived with the production paperwork for the life of the production’s files. The call sheet is still an official document. So make your final choice of joke wisely.

What are some the other call sheet joke sources you use?

Cheers & an enjoyable shoot to you,

Hour Changes & Midnight Call Times

The Dilemma: Call time for the first day of the shooting week is at midnight on Sunday and daylight savings ends this weekend… how do you ensure the crew shows up for set on the right day and at the right time?

The Answer: Well, it’s a 2-part answer.

(1) How to Set a Midnight Call Time
First of all… do not use 12:00 a.m. as your call time. Though the crew will understand the time to show up, they’ll find the date confusing: “Do they mean 12 midnight between Saturday & Sunday…. or… 12 midnight between Sunday and Monday??” Use a call time of 11:59 p.m. or 12:01 a.m. and then both time and date will be clear. Considering you’ll probably also have a number of pre-calls, I recommend using 11:59 p.m.

(2) How to Set a Call Time Around the Daylight Savings Time Change
DST time changes happen at 2:00 a.m. so give clear notice on the call sheet (that the crew receives the night or day before) that there is a time change, exactly when it happens (2am), and what happens to the hour (clocks back or clocks forward):


If your shoot day takes place during the time change (like when you  have a midnight call), then things get a little tricky. In the spring you lose an hour springing forward – that’s not as confusing as in the fall where you “repeat” an hour. If you call someone to set at 1:30 a.m… which 1:30 a.m. is it?

The easiest solution in the fall is to declare the time change to happen at least 1 hour before your shoot starts that night and so you can have consecutive hours for the entire night’s shoot.


Alternatively, you could declare the time change on your set will happen 1 hour after wrap. In either case, you’ll have to be very clear on the call sheet and message this unique “set time zone” to all involved. Considering, however, you’re shooting at night, you should know every single person who will be showing up to set anyway!

Cheers & a good shoot to you!

P.S. Oh yes… don’t forget to change your clocks this weekend. 🙂