Sorry for the over used Batman quote in the beginning. I just saw no other way to open this post. I was originally going to post that I had auditions today. I also took pictures and stuff. Well, I got three people to show up. That's it. I was pretty upset at first but sitting in an empty meeting room with your thoughts gives you a lot of time to think. This is my first BIG film. I don't want to get people I know to star in the main roles. I don't want to make this look like an amateur film, I want it to look like a real film. I am upset but I realized that this will all soon pass. When this film is behind me and I'm shooting Brotherhood in Blood or Keeping Justice or It's a Madhouse I'll laugh at how childish I was when I first started making movies.
For aspiring filmmakers: Here's where I messed up so you don't do the same
1. Rented space at the library (cheap but not a great place to have auditions).
2. Didn't make appointment times (I seriously thought having an open audition would bring me more people).
3. Not telling everyone I know about this film and have them tell everyone they know (I used twitter and filmincolorado.com and facebook. FIC is the only site to bring anything).
So I'm going to set a date and times for people to come in. I don't know about space yet and am still thinking about it. I plan for two weeks from now to hold auditions. If it doesn't work out to that day, that's okay. I'll make it work. Seriously, cannot stress this enough, HAVE DESIGNATED TIMES FOR PEOPLE TO AUDITION. Maybe you're smart and were like "well duh!" but maybe you're like me and just wanted to have an open time for anyone to drop by. Well either way,
I'm Still In.
Man, is it really Friday again already? Man, things have been crazy this past week. I wasn't totally honest when I said I was done with everything. I still needed a feeding tube, the food substitute for it (that required research), an IV pole, a wheelchair, and my editing software (yes, this is one thing I have been putting off but am buying next week). I bought the feeding tube, the food, and the IV pole last Friday and needed to make up some birthdays for some friends and family too. I got the wheelchair today and now only need to get the editing software (next week) and I'm done. Auditions are also next week and that just freaks me out. I'm nervous about them. I feel like I'm approaching all of this rather amateurishly. I guess this short is going to teach me things about myself and the industry.
I'm not going to give up though. It feels tough and scary but I know I'll end up okay in the end. I'm nervous and scared. Marco told me to get a chair and said that Roger Corman said it's the most important part of any movie. I got this chair, by the way. I'm just gonna keep rolling along and fighting for everything that I believe in. I'll get back to you guys in maybe a week or maybe two.
I'm Still In.
Let's see, three weeks. Yeah, I'd say that's long enough for me to get things back to running properly here. I don't really NEED to but it'd be nice...right?
Okay, so last Friday I posted a casting call out on the interwebs asking for actors for my film. Why didn't I tell anyone about this? Because this thing posts on Friday morning and I did what I needed to do on Friday night. I've rented out a meeting room at the library because I really didn't know where else to go since my original plan fell through. Yeah, it'll probably come across as stupid and I'll probably flub things up by the end of this but that's where I am right now.
Am I nervous? Fuck yes, I'm nervous. I feel like a scared little kid who has no idea what's going on. I feel like I have no control over this situation. I feel like I'm strapped to a roller coaster and can't get off. I'm not scared, I'm fucking terrified. Yes, I've made short films in the past. Yes, I've directed people and gotten decent performances out of them.
I find myself waking up every day wondering if everything occurring around me is real. I feel like I stepped into some weird alternate dimension. For the last few years, my life has really sucked. I didn't really feel like anyone was supporting me and treating me like I had some pipe dream. I was trying to get things going but they always fell apart before I could even get started on them. It wasn't like I was telling people "I want to be a filmmaker." No, I was stating "I am a filmmaker."
I knew my mom supported me but that was the only person I knew believed in me. My dad made me constantly feel like I had some stupid fantasy (I don't feel that way AS much now), my sister made me feel like my head was in the clouds, my brother...well he has his own shit he deals with. The extended family is something I don't even want to talk about. I dated a girl for a long time who would talk about how I wanted to make movies but never really supported me when it came down to it.
Do you know what? Fuck all those people. I knew the whole time, no matter how shitty they would make me feel, that I was a filmmaker. It's time I prove to all those bastards what I have known all along. I have a whole group of people supporting me in this (Lizzy, Marco, Chris, Eric YOU GUYS ROCK!). Yeah, fuck everyone else, they're douche bags.
Sorry, went into honesty mode again. Anyway, auditions are on the 29th. So, YAY! Let's go out there and kick some ass!
I'm Still In, Mother Fuckers!
I'm frustrated. I'm frustrated about a lot of things. I was hoping to have my tax return to start on the auditions but that doesn't seem to be going as planned. I'm gonna say this much, if I don't have the auditions at least set by the end of the month, I'm gonna just abandon this film. It obviously wasn't meant to be. Other things in my life have been bothering me too but I'm kinda throwing it all in the backseat and not really wanting to deal with any of it. This film is all I seem to think about anymore and it's driving me crazy that I can't do anything at this point in time.
I need a dolly and my actors before I can begin shooting. Everything else has been done, it's just getting the actors that's really annoying me. Actually, I need to secure two locations. However, I need my actors and their schedules before I can do something like that, otherwise I'll look like a total tool going in and asking without a set date. Hell, I feel like a tool for even registering this domain. I feel like the past couple weeks haven't really had ANY updates. Look, truth is some shit came up and I had to pay some bills. I was unemployed for a while (I'm working again) and didn't have the money they wanted so my production money had to go.
Yes, I am frustrated as hell right now. I am probably taking it out on people close to me but nobody is telling me if I am or if I'm not so I can't be sure. I feel a complete lack of drive and motivation. I have noticed that I've been cursing a lot more (I usually don't curse). I just feel like everything is beating me down. I know I need to just reach up and punch it in the face and keep fighting but for fuck sake it feels really difficult right now. I don't feel like anyone is cheering me on.
My mom is more concerned about bragging to everyone after this is done. Marco is more concerned about the finished product. My dad makes me feel like I'm still living a pipe dream. The only person left that knows is the aforementioned girlfriend (truth is I don't know what's going on right now). When she's there she makes me feel like I can take on the world and tell everyone to suck my dick as I rise to the top. She reminds me of how awesome I feel I am in my mind. However, she's been busy lately and I don't want to stress her out with my problems.
She's an amazing friend and an amazing person. Remember how that stupid book says you need someone to support you in this? That's her. She's there for me like no one else. She at least gives a shit about what I have to say, unlike so many other people I know. She can be frustrating at times but, luckily, her frustrating times do not conflict with my freaking out about my movie times. She's a cool chick and can be so supportive, I only wish I could return the favor. However, I must state that she's trying to get her own life together so can't be there all the time, but she does try.
Sorry, got a bit sentimental there for a moment. I really don't know what next week's post will be about. I'm not sure if next week's post will have a different ending. I'm not sure if there will even be a post next week. I'm not too sure about anything. Well, there is one thing I'm sure of:
I'm Still In.
To be honest, once again, I don't really have any updates this week. It's been a rough week. I was aware the week would be slow so I posted on twitter for people to ask me some questions about what I do. Here we go:
Why is your production company called Decades Apart?
In 2007, I made a stop motion film called Return of the Zombie King or at least started it (seeing as how the project was never finished due to its large size). I decided to use a couple of photos I had on my computer and create two obscure titled companies from them; one was Flaming Skull Pictures and the other was Decades Apart Productions. It started off as a joke because the picture was guys from the American Revolutionary War and guys from the Civil War, I looked and said "Film War? No. Um, Flags of our Fathers Pictures? No. Um...they happened about a century apart...how about Decades Apart?" So, I just used it for that one project. Then I used it again when I made the Super Jesus cartoons. About that point, the title just started growing on me because I felt I was decades apart from what current day cinema was (I was either really behind or really ahead). In the end, I just stuck with Decades Apart. It has nothing to do with paying homage to Tarantino's Band Apart or anything else. It's literally just because of a few little metal soldiers and the wars they represented.
Who inspires you?
Several directors inspire me and all for different reasons. I'm inspired by Robert Rodriguez's cheap and effective way to make good movies and his "Mariachi" style. I'm inspired by Quentin Tarantino's dialogue driven scenes and intense suspense. I'm inspired by John Woo's beautiful way of shooting awesome action scenes. I'm inspired by Yimou Zhang's breath taking beautiful shots and character driven films. I'm inspired by Akira Kurosawa's...well everything. I'm inspired by Alfred Hitchcock's cinematography. I'm inspired by pre-alien abduction Dario Argento and his great suspense and fear building. I can go on about the directors that inspire me all day...but then I couldn't get on to other questions.
What equipment do you use?
Until I bought my new camera I had been using the Sony Handycam DCR-HC28 and edited with Sony Vegas 9. Now, I'm using a Canon Vixia HV 40 and an Audio-Technica AT8035 and editing on Sony Vegas HD 11 Premium Suite.
Are you going for any particular style?
At the time of this writing, no. I usually only try to use a style if I'm shooting a specific genre. For example, my planned feature film is a giallo film (a type of murder mystery which led to the creation of the slasher genre) and I want to shoot that in giallo format (lots of bright reds with other colors being dull, artistically shot, POV shots, etc.). I also don't really plan out my shots. Well, I plan them out but if I see something on set that would make a nice shot, I'll go with that. Things I've made that are examples of this: the Live Fast trilogy, Denver Campus Launch, Vanished, Grove Promo, and Wedding Montage. Not much of my early work contains shots like these because I was working with impatient people on set or didn't know enough about films myself.
How many takes do you usually use?
It really, really, really depends on the actor. When I'm acting, I use one to two takes because I know how I want something said and can usually do what I want to a degree. Gaby can take anywhere from one take to twenty takes. My cousins took about three takes for each shot when we shot chunky monkey cereal. So yeah, it depends on the actors.
How is production on your short film going?
It's going well, I suppose. Technically, production hasn't begun yet because I still need my actors. I have been having a rather awesome time in gathering props. Looking at the budget for the film, I have found several ways to save money so my budget has been a lot less than I had predicted. However, I do still need the actors. Actually, this whole blog thing is to answer that question.
What is Invisible Diary about?
I don't want to give away too much about it but it's pretty much about a kid in the human vegetative state sharing his last moments of life.
What do you plan to do with this film?
I think I'm going to put it on the festival circuit. I'm also going to have a private screening at my house for the cast and will show it to the people who have supported me through this.
What are your plans after this film?
I've mentioned before about Through the Devil's Eyes but haven't really elaborated past talking about it. Pretty much, I plan to start on pre-production of that film as soon as I finish editing Invisible Diary.
There's all the questions people have asked this week. I hope you guys enjoyed reading my responses and hopefully, next week, I'll have some goodies for you.