In September I had a bucket list experience visiting the sets of Arrow repeatedly in Vancouver – first meeting Team Arrow, then touring the empty studio sets, and watching episode 406 being filmed –it really was the VIP fan experience and I’ve been dying to share it with you!
[Note: These articles are not spoilery as angering the gods that make DCTV would be a fate worse than death for this fangirl – rather it’s filled with behind the scenes info I hope you’ll enjoy as much as I did. But there is S4 related content – hence the delay posting- so if you’re not up to date with Arrow, be warned!]
With information now emerging online about ARROW episode 406 entitled ‘Lost Souls’, from the upside down Olicity kiss that engulfed Twitter:
to the full synopsis:
I thought it time to share what I can about being on set briefly during this episode:
We were greeted by a PA Hayley and led inside the studios. Movement in and out is only allowed between takes, denoted by a light outside and loud bell! We were ushered inside to sit behind the director, Antonio Negret, and the script supervisor Susie. The director’s space was small and dark – like a cubicle filled with a wall of monitors – which are actually portable to enable easy transfer between sets. Antonio was very welcoming and explained the scene to us. I can’t give anything away except to say it was a flashback scene with Stephen Amell, on a new set. It was a relief to see him without the dreaded flashback wig, making him look better – and older. Hearing him acting just beside us, whilst watching him on monitors surrounded by props etc on a dressed set – including fire! – making the scene come alive was surreal, exciting and magical. I can’t wait to see the finished episode!
Despite the small space the set was bustling with activity until the AD yelled ‘Action’ in a loud British accent. It gave me a real insight into how much personnel and work goes into each scene. Hayley explained how her job involved delivering scripts to making contracts- and whatever the director wanted her to do. A dream job for a fellow nerd! It takes on average one hour to shoot a page of script – but it varies e.g. stunt scenes take longer. Most main roles e.g directors, ADs, DPs require at least 2 people to share the role per season as each episode takes a week to prepare before shooting for 8-9 days. We met Tim from the sound department who controlled the boom and the actors’ hidden mics. He gave us a job to do – tell him if we spotted the mics on screen!
Listening to all the technical jargon being bandied about certainly sounded like a different language.
Construction of sets generally takes place on set – there is a specific department for this. Once the script is written, concept art is drawn and the finished design decided upon before construction is started – often only a few weeks before shooting starts. Apparently there is a great new set being made for 408/409 which has Hayley excited. I was shocked to find out that much of the Queen Mansion interior was actually copied from Hatley Castle and built as a set in the studios for season 1!
We were given a goodie bag with Arrow merchandise as a parting gift, which topped off a brilliant morning.
Thanks to all the crew who gave us their time and insight.
If you haven’t read Part 1 of our Arrow set visit click here
If you like this then please leave a comment here or tweet me @tanavip.
Check out part 3 coming soon where we tour the sets of Arrow – past and present – with DC TV’s super Director Glen Winter!!