Written by Kianna Best on Nov 4, 2022. Posted in Awards and Festivals

Ford powers film in Danilo Parra’s newest directorial venture

Ford and film come together for Chilean-American director Danilo Parra’s newest project Mushroom. Powering equipment used for the production, Ford’s F-150 Lightning and E-Transit contributed to on-set lightning effects, windstorms, high definition camera’s and even the set’s coffee machine. The Location Guide spoke with Parra about his experience.



As two foragers cast their eye upon a supersized mushroom, the natural forces and action packed sequences make it hard to believe that it all started with two vehicles. Whilst not featuring the vehicles themselves in the film, the integrity of the power source is indisputable.


What was the experience like relying on a vehicle for production?

I was excited to have a vehicle with so many places to plug in. I'm always looking for ways to power my films and usually the only thing we have is a small unreliable generator that turns on and off and needs more gas. When I first looked at this sturdy quiet truck (Ford F150 Lightning) I knew that my small generator days were over. But still, we wondered, would this truck power our set throughout the whole 10 hour shoot? We crossed our fingers and did some tests and we didn't miss a beat.


 How do you include innovative methods of production in your projects?

Every film is different but with this film I created a 3D animation of the story to see what would work and what wouldn't work ahead of the shoot. That animation, which I created in Unreal Engine, allowed me to see all the elements we would need on set for each shot. It also was the quickest way to inform the crew what we needed. That was an innovative pre-production tool that became a guide for our shoot. The LED lighting tricks we were able to do were also innovative as we had full control over the look of the forest. We made the forest turn from night to day using a few powerful LED lights that were powered by the truck.


How do you view more sustainable methods of production? 

Production can be very wasteful but there are many creative ways to keep the set sustainable. Powering with electric energy rather than gas powered tools is one way. Recycling on set is another way. A third way could be to donate funds to the location where a film was shot, especially if the film was shot in a park or on indigenous land. The best practice is to try and leave a location the way you found it especially if it's a natural environment.


Do you believe that enough is being done to consider sustainability in the production sphere? 

I don't. Sometimes creative ideas supersede all other aspects of filmmaking and those creative ideas might also be destructive ideas. I do like practical effects that set building can offer but a lot of that gets thrown away after shoots and so maybe certain ideas should utilize visual effects instead so that tangible waste isn't created.


What do you have coming up?

I'm back in documentary mode now working on a film about indigenous electric bike food delivery workers in New York. It's a very intimate story about the dark side of the American dream.


Images courtesy of Danilo Parra


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