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The making of Der Bettnässer (The Bed-Wetter)

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Der Bettnässer (The Bed-Wetter) by Ingo Schiller and Stephan Müller got a Diamond Award and the Best Editing Award at BIAFF 2009. Although busy preparing for his graduate exams and planning an new animation, Ingo Schiller made time to tell us a little about ...

All the strange ideas in our heads

Stephan and I were both born in 1980. We live in Berlin and have known each other for a long time, because we went to school together. Now we are students of visual communication studies. Stephan is at the College of Fine Arts in Hamburg and I am at the Bauhaus University in Weimar. Our hobbies are quite similar too, besides filming, we really enjoy taking photographs.

Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'.

For the story of the film, we took all the different strange ideas we had in our heads and put them together. Curiously, they all were more or less "funny", so we decided to build on this.

The shooting of the film took about three months. That was very hard, because after some weeks we were a bit tired of filming every day without having a normal life. We had no real crew, most of the time it was just Stephan, me and one of the other actors.

Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'. Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'. Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'.
Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'. Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'. Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'.

The actors were all friends or relatives. The little boy is Lukas, Stephan's brother; the girl is played by my girlfriend Julie. Petko is a good friend of ours. I played the bed-wetter and Stephan is the lady with the laundry.

The Bed-Wetter was our first real film project together. I came up with the basic idea and together we added new ideas or "upgraded" the old ones. We had just a very loose storyboard. The ideas were clear but, for example, most of the locations were found on the day we decided to shoot the scene we wanted.

Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'. Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'. Still from 'The Bed-Wetter'.

Post production

Picture of the Sony DCS W17 camera.The editing process took also a long time, we had one scene with a baby that we decided to take out at the end. But because of the match cut* style we used, we had to shoot a new scene, so that everything fitted.

The audience, at least so far as we know, likes the film. It has been shown on several festivals and on local tv.

For the shooting we only used a very simple and cheap Sony compact-camera (Sony DSC-W17 **) and there was no special lighting gear - we used the light that was available. This meant the whole shooting was very cheap. For that reason we are even happier, that the film has been and still is shown so often at festivals etc.

- Ingo Schiller

* Though the term "match cut" often describes a seamless or "invisible" cut in film, here it is used in the sense of a cut which is "visible" but matches graphically or pictorially - a visual metaphor. -Editor.

** The camera is basically for stills but can shoot 22 minutes of mpeg video at 640x480 resolution. It cost about £150 though has now been replaced with newer Cybershot models. - Editor.

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Page updated on 04 October 2011
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