Childhood Machine

“I’m gonna need your longest extension cord.”

What is This? - "Childhood Machine" is a feature-length film being produced in June 2011 in Portland, Oregon. Learn More
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Posted by Sean July - 10 - 2012 0 Comment


Independent filmmaking is a wild endeavor. It’s a slow-burn process full of wild bouts of productivity and crippling valleys inactivity. You juggle writing/shooting/editing with your full-time jobs and hope you can keep all the elements from crashing to the ground or losing momentum. There is a great deal of creative faith involved in shepherding a project through a multi-year process. A downside to this extended type of production is that once you announce your project people ask if it’s finished every chance they get. They are showing interest and that interest is wonderful but, often times, you don’t have much to say in return except “Getting there! Getting there!”

So, it’s especially rewarding when you do finally have a bit of tangible evidence to present to people who are kind enough to inquire about the process. Today we have a bit of evidence, in the form of our teaser trailer. The music was created on an old Gameboy by  Jamey DeOrio and he’ll be helping out with the rest of the process as well.

We look forward to showing you more as the pieces continue to get put together. Enjoy!

Updates, questions, and answers

Posted by Jessica December - 14 - 2011 0 Comment

Hey friends and supporters!

We are busily working on getting Kickstarter packets together, which we can assure you will be coming to mailboxes and inboxes soon. In the meantime, it’s time to check in with the ‘ol Whiteman Brothers for a Q & A.

Hey guys, how’s the film coming along?

Well, hello! We are still in production on the film. Though, at this point, we can count remaining scenes on just our fingers (no need for the toes anymore). A big benefit of the film taking longer to complete than initially planned is that we’ve been able to take advantage of the passing seasons. Filming Portland during the changing of the leaves has been particularly satisfying. We just finished shaving Chris’ head for another round of shooting today (what we can assume is one of the last remaining sunny days we can take advantage of).

How excited are you guys about what’s happened so far?

We’re very excited about the footage we’ve gathered. It feels like we’ve had to make far fewer concessions (an invariable part of the filmmaking process) than ever before on a project. We’ve never been more proud of a stack of miniDV tapes. Considering the experimental nature of the project, each character feels like they’ve been given their due.

What’s been the most interesting or revelatory thing that you have come across in production of the film?

The most interesting part of the production has been our peekaboo moments (the unscripted moments). It always sounds like a great idea to rely on shooting from the hip when making a movie, and adapting to your environment on the fly, but the closer you get to those days the more nerve-wracked you become. Preparation is one of the few comforts of making a movie. To intentionally not-prepare for certain elements leads to more butterflies in the stomach and can lead to second-guessing of original intent. With that being said, some of our favorite moments came out of these peekaboo sequences (asking for people’s memories, following our Equinox character around town as he interacted with strangers) and we’re very pleased we’ve chosen to rely on these organic elements so much for the creation of Childhood Machine.


Thanks Sean and Christof and everyone of YOU out there in the interwebs! Keep coming back for more updates!

Red Bull sponsors the film, we rejoice

Posted by Scott June - 16 - 2011 0 Comment


Thank You Red Bull!

We are very pleased to announce that we have received a donation of 6 cases of Red Bull straight from the source! The Whiteman Brothers are hooked on Red Bull so it’s great to have a supply on set for the whole crew. Follow Red Bull on Facebook!

Childhood Machine Films at Grove

Posted by Scott June - 16 - 2011 0 Comment

In addition to making the best iPhone cases in the world, the folks over at Grove double as our good friends. To our delight, our main man Joe gave us the goahead to shoot – and Max was our liason to the building. Everything went smoothly… here are some pics from the set.

From left to right Jessica, Rachael, Max, Sean, Christof, Scott.

This shot took some practice.

Memory Foe, has a nice place apparently.

Camera Rig at Grove.

Max and Sean eyeballin.


Thanks Grove!

Not only did they let us use their beautiful office space to film but let they us borrow some camera gear as well. Go to and check out their tricked-out handmade-in-Portland iPhone cases.

Well it’s slightly more complicated than that… In the film, the character “Memory Foe” is campaigning against the harmful effects of memory. In this scene she is holding a “Memory buy out” – we set up along the waterfront in Portland between the Burnside and Steel bridges. In all we filmed about 30 interviews and paid out in $1 coins. The proposition: share your best and worst memory.

To our surprise it was pretty easy to convince strangers to participate – there was a buzz of enthusiasm about, it was a good day to be making a film, the whole process was invigorating. As you might expect, when you ask strangers to reach deep down into their souls and pull out their best and worst memories to share on camera, the situation gets intense….but that was exactly the plan.

Sean convincing a stranger to bare his best and worst memories for the film.

Double DVX100 cameras’s.

Filming people’s memories on the waterfront.


Thank You Jimmy John’s!

East Coast nostalgia no more…Jimmy John’s exists on the West Coast y’all. They sponsored our shoot for the day and it was fantastic. Check them out online or map their locations on google maps.

Christof made this fancy sign for the shoot.

We filmed about 30 interviews on the waterfront. Nate is keeping track of the takes

Christof and Rachael rest for a moment – other people’s emotions can be exhausting.

Our production assistant is making sure that all the interviewees sign the proper release forms.

The very very first scene of the day involved Childhood Machine’s mother, answering the door. Sean does a great old woman voice, ask him to demonstrate sometime.

Memory Foe (the actress Rachael Maier) arrives at the workshop, one of the key scenes in the movie. Views from inside and outside the door:

Our sound engineer Matt Huiskamp has got a fortress of silence set up behind the heater.

Matt is recording in Ableton Live – there are 3 tracks for the basement scenes: a stereo pair of room mics, a Groove Tube mic and a shotgun mic.


Super big thanks to Taste Tickler for sponsoring the day of shooting!

The fine folks at Taste Tickler support local filmmaking. They hooked us up with a bunch of sammiches… they were delicious, please check them out – Taste Tickler on Facebook.

Memory Foe’s Workshop Scene

Nate starts a take, Childhood Machine (Christof) is deep in character.

Childhood Machine and Memory Foe rehearsing

Check out that sweet camera rig…thanks Grove!

Shoutout!The crew of Childhood Machine would like to extend a hearty thanks to the good people at Chai-Yo Thai at 1411 NE Broadway! Thanks for donating a tasty batch of Thai food to the production of the film. Check them out online.

Damn everybody, thanks for pitching in! We actually exceeded our $4300 goal for fundraising by almost a thousand dollars. That is fantastic news, we’ll be sure to put that extra money to wise use.

The Kickstarter campaign finishes on the same day as filming begins, Saturday June 4. The first actor to fly in is Rachael (who plays the character Memory Foe) – she gets here on Friday. Until then it’s all organizing wires, set decorating and lighting the basement.

A Box Full of Lenses, Donated

Posted by Scott June - 1 - 2011 0 Comment

Dear Film Center, Thanks for the lenses

We were fortunate to have received a box full of random lenses as a donation through the NW Film Center. This is fantastic news because it falls in sync with what the Whiteman Bros have been chatting about – including multiple camera and filming styles into the various scenes of the movie. Hard to say how this will play out, but rest assured, these lenses will make an appearance.

Here are a few shots from the setbuilding phase to give you an idea of what we’re working with.

Test Footage

The crew are all big advocates of the Film Center, having taken classes there and whatnot. Check them out!