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What They Do – Key Grip

It is a position that can’t be defined by a simple title.  Jim Brennan was the Key Grip on “Table 47.”  He prepped the set, worked with the gaffer on lighting, set up the dolly track for camera shots and broke down gear at the end of the day.

A “typical” day. Jim Brennan blacks out windows so we can control lighting on the set inside.

A “typical” day. Jim Brennan blacks out windows so we can control lighting on the set inside.

Jim was also our First Assistant Camera operator.  This meant he kept a shot in focus.  Let’s say an actor leans into a shot.  He’d be in focus at the start, but out of focus at the end unless someone moved the focus ring to compensate.

Jim keeps the shot in focus as Director of Photography Ken Hendricks shoots the scene.

Jim keeps the actor in focus as Director of Photography Ken Hendricks shoots the scene.

It’s one of those jobs no one notices if it’s done right.  Everyone would instantly see a shot that wasn’t sharp.  Jim made sure that never happened.

Beyond that, Jim was ever vigilant.  As a first time director, I learned on the job.  Jim had done it all before.  As Executive Producer of the feature film “An American Terror” he oversaw that entire production.

Jim made sure I didn’t make any big, bad or costly mistakes!

Jim made sure I didn’t make any big, bad or costly mistakes!

And it’s Jim Brennan we have to thank for one of our fine actors.  Louise Macdonald worked on “An American Terror. ” When we were casting, Jim suggested Louise and she turned out to be perfect for the part of Jill.

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