I wrote this reply to a friend of mine who asked how we filmed Cats! with such a small crew. Perhaps you might find it interesting.

I’ve learnt a lot and absorbed a lot of influences over the few years (Wes Anderson, Gordon Willis and Roger Deakins for cinematography, with Edgar Wright and Beat Takeshi Kitano for editing). Like Willis/Deakins I tend to just light the room and let the Red Dragon’s wonderful dynamic range take care of the rest. We also faced the challenge of getting cinema quality cinematography on a very tight budget. In the case of this film we used a 3K Arri-clone LED light as the moon and a 2K fluoro softbox with a tungsten balance gel inside the room pointing up at the ceiling to decrease the dynamic range between darkness and the practicals. Going shoulder mount with a Tilta wireless follow focus dramatically increased the speed with which I could setup new shots and angles, and it’s a technique that I really like for its dynamism.

Cats! BTS. The Red all decked out in its full regalia

I don’t storyboard because I tend to work collaboratively with the talent, so there’s no time, and I’ll just work out the blocking and work out which shots I need to tell the story. It helps being the editor, too, so I’ve already edited the story in my head before we start rolling. The bucket joke is a great example of that as it was improv’d on set.

We shot this over two nights, a total of about 12 hours shooting time, including the drone footage. I had two crew, myself and my son Michael. I also deliberately shot for a delivery in a 3:2 aspect ratio, giving it more of a Wes Anderson feel and forcing me to centre the action in the shots so that quick cuts could be easily understood by the audience. Total budget for the short was USD250, which was mostly the hire of the M60 and the purchase of a pair of Ralph Lauren pyjamas.

The nice colouring comes from Red’s new IPP2 workflow, which is a vast improvement over previous colour sciences. All it took was a Philmcolour LUT to bring out the skintones, although I did use a very light Blackfrost over the lenses to soften it a bit. I used 2 lenses, the Contax prime 28mm F2 and Macro 60mm f2.8. Anyone could shoot a feature film using only these two focal lengths.


Here’s a little labour of love. What’s the point of having a film production company if you can’t make your own films? 

So one day we had the idea that, within a month or so and with a lot of help from our friends, turned into this comedy short starring Keren Bala Devan. 

Paul had scripted out the basic idea and then sent it to his friend in Singapore, Tom Radford, Tom in turn realised that it was, in his own words ‘Comedy Gold’, and sent it to Keren, who also loved it. Our very own Shafina jumped into the production chair and all of a sudden we were shooting. 

The shoot took two nights and post production too 11 days, including 2.5 days for sound design. Everything was shot and posted using our own in-house equipment.

The result is this hilarious short which cracks jokes all the way to the final frame,


Petron Blaze

Talking Cars

Congratulations Petron Blaze Fuels, on a great TVC,  for which we provided production support.

Agency: Astana
Director: Dato’ Shafri Mohamad
Production House: Fantasy Factory
Executive Producer: Ivan Gerard Khoo
Production Support: Full Throttle Films
Line Producer: Jeremy M Smith
Director of Photography: Paul Russell


Kivanis Down Syndrome School, Klang

Corporate Video

“Beautiful, Excellent” Dato Stewart Labroy. Club Secretary

Here’s a nice video full of happy faces. These kids are so cute and lovable it’s hard not to join in the smiles. 

Kivanis Down Syndrome School in Klang provides excellent facilities for Downs Syndrome and Special Needs kids. It’s a charity school which gets no government support. 

If you’d like to donate to help out this worthwhile cause, contact Ardinsoon at +60 3 33428259 or +60 16 3267275

Or email kdsf.klang@gmail.com

Produced and Directed by Paul Russell, Full Throttle Films

Hello There!

Welcome to our new site for our exciting new venture. Here we have a few samples of the work we’ve done both separately and together. But we’re hoping that this is just the start. 

Aside from making great entertainment for other people, we are currently developing our first feature film – so watch this space!