SOLITARY Web Series Production: A Lighter Day

Yesterday’s shooting schedule for the SOLITARY web series at Wapato Jail, “the never-opened Multnomah County detention center in North Portland” (as described by Kelly House of The Oregonian), was a lighter one for Think Ten Media Group. This allowed shooting of some additional footage and an interview, as well as hosting several visitors.

Shooting B Roll for SOLITARY Web Series

Director Ramon Hamilton, producer Jen Fischer, DP Daniel Cotroneo, lead actor William Brown, and the SOLITARY cast and crew had an agenda that included shooting B Roll and additional audio and sound.

Catching a glimpse of SOLITARY web series DP, Daniel Cotroneo, through the security camera

Catching a glimpse of DP Daniel Cotroneo through the security camera — image source: Jennifer Fischer

For an overhead shot, Daniel had to experiment at bit with how to make it work. He finally worked out a solution using a C-Stand.

Overhead shot without C-stand

Overhead shot without C-Stand — image source: Jennifer Fischer

Overhead shot with C-Stand

Overhead shot with C-Stand — image source: Jennifer Fischer

Interview with Co-producer Five Mualimm-ak

Time was also allotted to shoot an interview with Five Mualimm-ak, one of the SOLITARY web series co-producers. Five is also Executive Director of the Incarcerated Nation Campaign, “a grassroots movement that brings together currently and formerly incarcerated persons, family members and friends of the incarcerated, and advocates for the purposes of education, reform, and service,” according to the group’s website.

Director Ramon Hamilton interviews co-producer Five Mualimmak for SOLITARY web series

Director Ramon Hamilton interviews co-producer Five Mualimm-ak — image source: Jennifer Fischer

Five “spent five years of his life in solitary confinement, out of 12 years he served inside New York prisons on charges that were later overturned,” according to a March 2014 North Country Public Radio article, which includes audio from an on-air interview with Five. His time in solitary, about which he wrote for The Guardian, was spent in one of New York’s euphemistically-named “Special Housing Units” ( or “SHUs”).

Five also played a guard in a SOLITARY web series scene today. He showed off some baton twirl skills he garnered from observing real-life prison guards.

Five plays a prison guard

Five plays a prison guard — image source: Jennifer Fischer

Five twirls his baton

Five twirls his baton — image source: Jennifer Fischer

Visitors to the SOLITARY Set

SOLITARY also hosted several visitors to the set:

  • Jan Elfers, Public Policy Advocacy Director of the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, who has been an amazing supporter of the project and hosted many production personnel during the shoot;
Five with Jan Elfers of the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon

Five with Jan Elfers of the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon — image source: Jennifer Fischer

Five with Shannon Wight (far left), Deputy Director of the Partnership for Safety and Justice and Kerry Naughton, Crime Survivor Program Director for the Partnership for Safety and Justice

Five with Shannon Wight (far left) and Kerry Naughton, both from the Partnership for Safety and Justice — image source: Jennifer Fischer

  •  and Helen Silvas of The Skanner. a Portland news publication.
Lead Actor William Brown with Helen Silvas of The Skanner

Lead Actor William Brown with Helen Silvas of The Skanner — image source: Jennifer Fischer