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Educational television series shoots second season

by C.J. Veach

Young actors on the Slemon Park set of The Adventures of the Aftermath Crew

It's lights, camera, action at Slemon Park's hangar 3 as The Adventures of the Aftermath Crew begins shooting its second season. The children's educational television series brings together nearly forty cast and crew to create thirteen half-hour shows.

Co-produced by Larry LeClair and Richard Zurawski, the show is expected to have a production cost of $1.3 million for this season.

As many as twenty young teens from all over the Island handle most of the acting duties. They are required in studio three days a week but are tutored when not filming. As well, a wide array of nutritional food is provided for them. Paid according to the ACTRA union scale, these youths are well compensated for their time-and they're having fun.

The show can be seen in Canada on Global, TV Ontario, the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network and others. But selling the "education can be fun" theme has been easy all over the world as the United States, South Africa, along with various Asian and Middle East countries have purchased the series.

An ethnic mix of children is required and all of the actors were found on PEI. So as not to offend some sensitivities in the Islamic world, girls are required to wear full length sleeves and pants.

Although some of the scenes were shot in the summer, the bulk of the production began in November with around eighty per cent shot in-studio. Three to five cameras are used and for every four minutes shot only one minute is saved-all on hard drive as opposed to film. Live action is supplemented by animation which is painstakingly edited on sight.

Aftermath Crew is the first production to tap into the province's Film and Television Rebate Program ,which quickly repays some production costs. It is hoped this type of incentive will lure more of the film industry to Prince Edward Island despite the grumblings of some Hollywood filmmakers.

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