Friday, December 30, 2005

Happy Stinking Holidays!

Ah, a 70 degree Christmas and New Years! This is really the only positive aspect of Florida living. But I have to say bye bye. I'm moving in a few weeks, and couldn't be happier. I once again am shopping for cameras. This time, I actually have the money allotted, and in the bank, so I am becoming quite anal as to which camera I want. I'm pretty much looking at 4 cameras-3 of which are Panasonic-the DVX100A, DVX100b and the HVX200. Along with the Canon XL2, they all have what I want, but at 3 wildly different prices. The Hvx is the best of everything, but the price is at the very least $5,999. In a pipedream, I could acquire this, but I have to be realistic-it would break me. So that's out. I like the DVX picture better than the Canon,and the Canon is $2,000 more, so Canon is out. What's left? Two Panasonic models which are essentially the same camera, but the 100B has several new updates/upgrades. It's about $500 to $1000 more than the 100A. I'm leaning toward the DVX100A and an anamorphic lens adapter so I can shoot in true widescreen. That combo would be about the same amount as the DVX100b alone. So, there you have it.

I also reinstated my internet access. Obviously.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Hiatus

As you may have noticed, my updating has been quite lacking recently. So I'll fill you in on a few things before I depart for the next 2 weeks or so. I have made great progress with my story boards for Generator. I'm about 55% finished. I also have many new ideas for the movie which I'm excited about. Since I have a background in construction, I figured I should use what I know to my advantage. My old boss, who is married to my mother, has a huge work shop (which I'm shooting Generator in) He has lifts and cranes, bobcats and scaffolding. I have many camera angles in my head that can be acheived because of these 'weapons' and I plan on exhausting everything that resides at the warehouse. I want the camera to be on the move in almost every shot. Not MTV style, quick cutting garbage, but slow steady tracking shots and other moves like in The Shining and Halloween. So that's what's going on with Generator.

I cancelled my cable modem, and my internet 2 weeks ago, because I wasn't getting enough work done, hence my lack of updating. But in the last two weeks, I have several script ideas, watched and broke down my top 10 horror films(The Shining, Halloween, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Evil Dead, April Fool's Day, Suspiria, The Thing, Black Christmas, The Wicker Man and...?) and tried to figure out why they work so well, and almost uniformly, they had three things in common-music, cinematography and a tense atmosphere. I of course found other similarities, but these three are my man concern. Blah blah blah.

Anyway, I hope everyone is doing well, and writing the next big independent hit. I'll see you soon.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Camden NJ On TV tonight!

If anyone cares to take a gander at the human pile of feces that is Camden NJ, there's a feature on it tonight on that new Geraldo show on Fox, Geraldo At Large. It is a horrific place,(though there was an attempt to create a waterfront of upscale condos and stuff), and should be laid to waste as soon as possible. See for yourself!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

I'm Back

I have started immersing myself into Generator fully. And I also have begun the preliminary outlining of a cool little crime/drug film I will be able to shoot myself after Generator. So, I have been working, and working fairly consistently. I can't believe how many shots I have already for Generator. I was expecting somewhere around 200, but I'm above that number now, and I'm only half way.
---------------------------------------------------
I listened to the commentary on Mean Streets, and it's among the best I've heard, with Scorsese talking about his early career and his influences. Very informative, and he shows a great admiration for it.
---------------------------------------------------
Looks like I will being working at the post office again this holiday season. My feet were killing me last year. 12 hours standing on a concrete floor will do that. The money is fairly good, and a nice jolt of income for Christmas. I loathe it, of course, but I am moving in January, and this can only help me get going a little earlier.
---------------------------------------------------
Katie bought us Billy Joel tickets for Philly in March. He's a favorite of mine because he was(and probably is) a drunk, bitter, angry young man in the 70's, and I relate well to his sarcasm. A lot of my friends didn't get the Billy Joel enjoyment, until I made them listen to the lyrics. A few actually began to like him, and a few didn't, but did understand why I had my huge Joel faze about 8 years ago. At any rate, I am excited, especially since that bum Elton won't be hogging the stage.
---------------------------------------------------
Ah, the new idea I'm outlining is called GUPPY, and is a sort of throwback to the 70's type of revenge flicks, with a little organized crime in it to boot. Set in my South Jersey playground, which is not unaffected by having Philly 5 miles away, and NY 200 miles away. A lot of crime occurs in between those two cities, and most all of it I am privy to. A ton of mobsters actually live/lived nearby, like Nikki Scarfo and Gotti. And they had their hands in everything, including Ecstasy that kids sold to the ravers. And sometimes, a shady looking character would come and ask for the money...and well, it didn't take a genius to see to who and where the money was going. That's another reason I miss it up there...I was in the middle of everything, though I really didn't do any of it. You have Philly, and the beach, within a half hour of your home. Great fun. You have Camden for drugs, and mansions in Cherry Hill 5 miles from there. Anyway, Guppy is a very personal story, with a seemingly quiet suburban setting. But as we all know, underneath the gloss of silence, you have a million dirty little secrets.
-----------------------------------------------------
Speaking of Camden NJ, it was just voted the most dangerous city in America...again. I grew up within 10-20 miles of that place. I went there on drug runs...I was ripped off , or 'beat', as we called it. I went to the liquor stores at 4am because they stayed open when others were closed. (cops didn't enforce the law there) And yet, I never got into huge trouble there.

Lucky indeed.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

A Little Update:


Take a look at these upcoming releases, and tell me what you see(this is an actual list of movie news):


TOP NEWS
Hodder On 'Friday The 13th' Remake

Donnie Wahlberg On 'Silence'

'Masters of Horror' Set Visit

'Black Christmas' Remake

Miner To Direct 'Day of the Dead' Remake

Jackson Comes At 'King Kong' Anew

Adam Baldwin In 'Thirst'

'The Hills Have Eyes' Remake Pics

Wray's Spirit Lives In 'King Kong'

'Castlevania' Movie

Carmen Electra back for Scary Movie 4




Tuesday, November 08, 2005

At Least I'm Not Swinging A Hammer!


Before I get to this totally enlightening post, I want to state that I will be showing this Francis Ford Coppola pic on every entry until I don't feel exactly like that.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I am basically treading water down here in Florida. I have no cohorts down here. I have no money. I have no drive except the one that tells me to get out of here. I'm basically living in a sloth like state. Ideas come and go, yet I stare into space. "Do I want to start a project?" "What's the point?" Of course, I do want to take this on like a job, but I feel very out of sort with knowing I'm moving and making a film up in NJ, and it's contrasting with my anemic life down here to kind of leave me floating somewhere in purgatory. Which way do I go? I just feel I'm being distracted from my work with other concerns. I think I should just focus on Generator, and finish everything I can with regards to that film. Be totally prepared for the shoot. Make a budget sheet, finally finish my stinking storyboards and stuff like that. But it's that writer in me who is balking at this idea. "You don't write, you cease to be a writer! Muhahahaha!" I am so paranoid when I'm not writing. I feel like by not writing every single day, I am wasting away. That was the main problem with me storyboarding. I thought of it as beneath my writing. (Not being able to draw worth a lick has something to do with it too) I should just whip myself back into shape and realize that Generator should be first and foremost. A lot depends on it.

And maybe that's the real problem I'm having-knowing that my entire life depends on making this, or else I'm a failure. I left everything behind in order to make movies-my job, my family, my girlfriend, my friends-and maybe I'm just afraid of taking that last step to where there is no turning back. Where I am forced to run the show, keep paperwork in order, make cuts, direct actors, stay up editing at night, dealing with the disappointment when something doesn't work, buying the equipment-doing all this, and then finding out my film sucks...and being devastated.

I have to fight through this growing malaise and fucking focus.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Just Some Ramblings



I don't mind misleading advertising. In fact, since I expect it, I kind of laugh at it from time to time, thinking "Who in their right mind would believe this garbage?" So when I see the commercials for Trading Spouses (all of last week until I couldn't take it anymore), which aired this past Wednesday, I thought the show looked outrageous. The lady was screaming and ranting on and on. And so I had to see it. So, I tune in and watch the first ten minutes, and all is okay. Then before going to the first commercial, they show the fanatic footage that I'm tuning in for, and say "Stay Tuned because this is coming before the split", which means before they go back to their regular families. So I tune in. The second part is mildly humorous, and then the commercial break comes, and again, they tout what's coming up, which is the flipping out. So again, I stay tuned. This happens two more times at the commercial breaks. Then the show ends, and they say Tune in next week for part 2, so you can see this, and shows the woman flipping out.

It was a two parter! Now listen, I'm not one to berate advertisers since I understand it has to be done, but this is just ...dirty. I have no problems with those advertisements before the show to get people to tune in. But during the show, in which they know it's not in that episode? That is a very unethical practice, in my opinion. You have already gathered an audience through the pre air date commercials, so you're going to keep lying to the audience while they're watching? Good God, I was infuriated! Is it just me, or is that over the line? I have never watched a show where the in episode advertisements were for the next show. Fucking horseshit!

At any rate, I am not tuning in for the second part this coming Wednesday. In fact, I will download it for free and watch it at my leisure. So screw you!

----------------
Had a few things going down on the writing front. Seems I jumped the gun on Kill 'Em All. I have the idea and everything, but something kept calling me back to my unfinished script, "The Last Party". I figured I should finish that, since it may be the second film I will actually shoot this year. So KEA is on hold for now while I finish something I think will further my career, which is making my own film. Am I wrong in thinking it's more important for me to write and shoot my scripts, instead of writing and entering contests and trying to send them out to agents ? Anyway, I added 5 pages off the top of my head to "The Last Party", and I hate that title, by the by. Especially since it's in use for some crappy horror movie, I think. So there you have it-I'm writing my second feature that I will shoot myself. I might actually shoot this one first, just to get everyone comfortable with acting and taking direction from me. Plus this script is a comedy, so it'll be a nice warmup for us.

----------------

It seems that if I had any connections at all, April Fool's Day 2 might have had a chance. There are now almost 5 horror movies that have an uncanny resemblance to my script, and it pisses me off that they get released, yet mine languishes behind, even though I had the idea 3 or 4 years ago, and wrote the first outline 2 1/2 to 3 years ago. In the last year, at least 3 of those movies have received good reviews for being original and fun. Which frankly, is a good old fashioned kick in the gonads to me. My script is collecting dust while these half assed scribes are getting my fucking pub. There is still a chance of course, but I have to turn to drastic measures with the end result being burning a few bridges. The problem is, I don't know if they're still standing anyway...and I may never know.

The whole thing is just bizzare. This manager/agent, in responding to a stern email I sent him(Unintentionally stern, believe it or not), said he would stop trying and I could get someone else if I wished, but that he was very interested in pursuing this. It doesn't seem that way to me. I haven't heard one thing from him since, besides a confirmation email saying he received my 3rd draft. I have no idea what to do. He doesn't return calls, but I've found that nobody does, so that's not all that unusual. My bigger problem lies in the fact that he doesn't respond to my emails. I mean, to me, it isn't all that hard to say "Nothing yet", and goodbye. But then again, I don't know the business.

So, to make this seem shorter, I have the producers phone number and business address. I'm going to call and see if I can't get my script in front of him. Of course, they don't take unsolicited material, but I may drop a name or two, since I now have nothing to lose.

So there you have. I'm in a perpetual state of purgatory, and have nowhere to go but...well...up or down, I guess.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Kill 'Em All!


My new screenplay adventure is one I have thought on for a long time. I first had the idea of doing a western after seeing The Wild Bunch and Once Upon A Time In The West. Prior to seeing those two classics, I had not been a western fan at all. I loathe John Wayne movies. In fact, the only western I have ever enjoyed was The Unforgiven. After seeing both TWB and OUaTITW, I realized why that genre never appealed to me-it was too cookie cutter. The cowboys were clean and righteous, and the bad guys always got their comeuppance. The Unforgiven included a theme of revenge, of doing something that was just, not necessarily morally right.

Enter The Wild Bunch. (Now, this is my personal examination of the film, and what it signified to me. I have read no expert breakdown of the symbolism of The Wild Bunch.) To me, the movie meant the assassination of the ideology of that old west mentality, and mythology. It's quite clear to the crew early on that they are going to end up dead. So when they wander into that town with that famous shot (above), they do so with the knowledge that the west of the old is over, and so are they. It's almost a suicide mission, for the genre, and for the characters. So that's my half assed interpretation of The Wild Bunch, which as far as I feel like going presently, because this all leads to....

Kill 'Em All. My new script jaunt. It's a psuedo western, or a neo western, or a damn bloodbath, who the hell knows for sure?-but one thing I definitely know- it's extremely nihilistic in tone. This will be a bleak story, with some macabre humor. It will be revenge, loneliness, hatred..but most of all, it will be greed. I have the pictures in my head of the key scenes, which means it's time to begin the process. So finally, I can breathe again. Finally, I am not wasting my time. Finally, I can say I'm a writer. And finally, I can feel I have a purpose.

At least until I finish the first draft, in which case I feel like a complete worthless shit again.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Like This Should Surprise Me, But...

Black Christmas and Day of the Dead are both set for remakes. Fantastic news from the land of idiots.

There is no end to this. People always argue with me, saying that this has always been how Hollywood operates. But I'm telling anyone who will listen, this is unprecedented. There are literally dozens of remakes in the pipeline for the next year or two. It's so disheartening being a writer/director these days. Sometimes I wonder if I should just throw in the towel.

Frustration level is very f'n high. Especially since I haven't embarked on a new script in two months. Time to let my anger flow, ladies and gents.

***UPDATE***
Jump for joy, little ones! The Hills Have Eyes....remade!!!! Good Lord, it justs gets worse and worse.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Boo! A Scare For You!

I happened upon this*** 9/11 proof one night while I was researching the Illuminati at 4 in the morning. Needless to say, it's really eerie, and even frightening to see that these playing cards show, without doubt, what happened on 9/11. Problem is, this ***game was released in 1995! Say what you will about conspiracies, but in some cases we should really take notice that people mocking conspiracy theories are playing directly into the hands of the conspirators. I happen to be into conspiracy theory, but am rather rooted in reality as well. I'm more of a 'where there's smoke, there's fire' person. This seems pretty scary to me.

Not only that, but a day after the attacks, a friend showed me how you could fold our paper money into pictures of the attack. The one dollar bill can be folded so the back shows the twin towers standing. The five dollar bill can be folded to show the twin towers hit by the words united and america(or american, the two airlines that actually hit them. (Off memory, I believe I'm correct so far) The ten dollar bill shows the towers burning, complete with a person falling out of one tower. The twenty dollar bill shows a pile of rubbish, no towers. Now just as weird as it is alone, what makes it even more unsettling is how this information came to fruition the very next day. Seems like it was leaked online. But by who? I find it hard to believe someone was fiddling around with a 5 dollar bill, and just fell upon this.

***(I checked the game site, and these cards appear to be the real deal)

***disclaimer-I know there is a religious slant to this, but if you actually read it, and look at the cards, it proves pretty interesting, even with the heavy handed end paragraph***

A last thought for the day: Have you ever considered the classics, 1984, A Brave New World and Animal Farm were not the cautionary tales they're made out to be, but a blue print for what was going to happen? Aldous Huxley, writer of A Brave New World, was very steeped in the illuminati tradition. He was turored by none other than Aleister Crowley, occultist and satanist, who of course had infamous relations with the Illuminati. So, perhaps Huxley had some insider knowledge, and was not a prophet, but a messenger for the NWO.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

All Cats Are Grey

I am at a standstill with what to pursue next. I have a few ideas, but none spark my interest so far. I'm in that grey area where I am anticipating actually shooting my first feature in the coming months(and documenting it day to day here), but I also know I have to do something more active, rather than just wait for that shooting date to come. I wish I could just sleep until about February, then wake up with my Panasonic and start shooting. I am so pumped up to get that movie going...it's hard to concentrate on anything else.

I am also scouting for locations for another horror idea I have. The problem is, I need to know about availability of these two places I want to shoot at. I want to write my script specifically for either place. So it's imperative I actually find out the cost(for Byberry mental hospital in Philly, which has been closed for 15 years), or what permits will be needed(for filming in the Pine Barrens in South Jersey), if any, to begin. If I do get any word on either place, I will write a second feature to shoot immediately after Generator. Maybe even make it a trilogy of films, who knows?

Too ambitious? There's no such thing in my mind.

Monday, October 24, 2005

If Only You Had A Brain

This just in! Jason vs Freddy vs Michael Myers confirmed! (Yawn)...Well, this doesn't bother all that much. Sure it won't be horror, but at least it's not a remake. On the other hand, it also was semi-announced that Friday the 13th is being remade. Followed by the entire series. Why remake every Friday film? Oh, I remember-because we are so damn stupid we'll go see anything. I can't blame the studios anymore, as much as I like to. The Fog remake debuts at #1...and got torn apart from every angle prior to it's release-yet some numbskull doesn't like to watch people in outdated clothing, so he refuses to see the original. The stupidity in this country is just disgusting. I am so sick of writing original material, and seeing more and more remakes. It really is like a dagger to my gut. And I don't mean to say that everything I write is gold-I'm saying if it is, nobody would ever know. There needs to be some sort of farm system for unproduced writers. Maybe have it connected with schools. Or better yet, just make a school that serves as the minor leagues where the big boys can pick and choose from an allotment of new writers. Something has got to give.

I mean really, if this doesn't tell you Hollywood if stagnant, nothing will. How hard can it be to write a new Friday chapter? I mean, Jesus, throw some teens in the damn mountains this time...it's still better than a remake. How about overseas? Jason in Japan? All you need are new settings. How about a prequel? But no, we want to remake an entire series of films...that seems much more logical.

And you idiots will go make each film number 1.

Friday, October 21, 2005

I Have Made A Huge Mistake


I am beginning to find where I fit in terms of story telling. I am a dark human being that finds laughs in some naughty, dirty, bloody places. Yet, I still try to bend my enthusiasm for the Horror/Dark Comedy genre into others to fulfill some type of make believe portfolio I feel I'll need to exhibit to some suited up jerkoff from a Production company you never heard of. I try to outline my Western, it turns apocalyptic, and a free for all blood bath. I try a Rom/Com, but it turns out the reason they get together is to go on a Bonnie and Clyde type rampage, leaving hundreds of bodies in their wake, before exchanging bloody kisses and offing themselves in front of police. I write a coming of age story about a serial killer. I write a short story about a man whose penis is too large, and he is shunned from society(Gargantuman!). He resorts to hookers, since he believes they won't be frightened away..but they are..and he becomes...well, you know the rest.

So there's my problem. I am trying different things, not content with writing horror, but I end up there anyway. Perhaps I need to just accept what I am...a Horror/Black Comedy writer. I don't like to be pigeonholed, especially by my own hand, yet I have to wonder if this isn't how many horror greats start? I mean, does John Carpenter know he is that type of writer? Stephen King? Wes Craven? Dario Argento? They all have done other types of films, especially earlier in their career, yet they seem to flourish when they stay in horror. I wonder if you are what you are is an apt saying?

The bottom line is, should I try and change, or is being so into one genre a bad thing? Maybe I just belong in the dark dankness and not the lightness of happy pappy films? It's a tough process ripping out your soul and finding it's exactly what you knew it was, and nothing more.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

And Don't Let The Door Hit Ya In The Ass

It appears I can't move soon enough as hurricane Wilma looks like a direct hit. I lucked out all this year after being bombarded last year, and now this has to happen a mere two months before I move. Fan-friggin-tastic!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Adapting A Novel

I just finished reading American Psycho(Bret Easton Ellis), and thoroughly enjoyed it. It's definitely not for the faint of heart. The reader is basically put into the head of a madman, and gets bombarded with the constant musings of Patrick Bateman, in all their obsessive and gore soaked glory.

Anyway, I always have loved American Psycho, the movie. I consider it a dark comedy, and to that effect, it succeeds. Most who don't like it seem to think of it as either a) Psychological thriller or b) a Horror film. But I believe taken as a dark comedy, it delivers constant laughs. Of course, if you're not into dark comedy, this will have little effect on whether you like it or not-you'll hate it.

So having said all that, it was with great eagerness that I dove into the novel 4 days ago. In the early going, it was a tough read. It was very difficult to get the perspective down because there are thoughts, dialogue, sentences from characters that go on with no reply, run on sentences...ect. However, once you get accustomed to it, by chapter 2 or 3, it makes for a more comfortable ride. And what a ride. This is a brutally violent book. I mean just plain nasty, and Ellis spares no details, no matter how small(In fact, that goes for the entire book). Each incision is noted graphically, and I have to warn that the book is one hundred times as brutal as the movie. Maybe one thousand times. And it's also pretty damn funny. Which brings me (finally) to the adaptation job of Mary Harron and GuinevereTurner. The sheer amount of information they had to sift through is just mountainous. What they did is combine multiple characters into one, put some of Batemans narratives/monologues over some of the main action, killing two birds with one stone. There is a steady stream of narrative from Bateman, and it's too much for a film, but they picked and pieced together their own narrative from Batemans seemingly most important thoughts. Since they couldn't show the dozens of murders, they had him rather ingeniously go into detail for each killing mentioned in the book in his confession to his lawyer. In the book, his confession is much shorter, but in the movie, he goes on and on about a mans body rotting in a "bath tub of acid in Hell's Kitchen", and many other's. Of course, in the book, we read that he actually did all of those things while he's doing them, but in a film, trying to condense 400 pages into 100 pages, some things just won't fit. So he slyly mentions each one(most) from the book while he's on the phone. I thought that was a nice touch.

And the amazing job Harron and Guinevere did extracting the relevant information to tell the same story, but in a hyper condensed form is simply stunning. I can't even fathom how I would have done it. Where would I start? Go one chapter at a time and outline the info I want to use? It seems to me I would still come up with far too much.

So, I guess what I'm trying to say is, American Psycho is a great study for those who are thinking on adapting a novel into screenplay format. It's a fine example, or a how-to, to say the least.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Now They've Done It

Halloween is being remade! What's next? Indiana Jones? Jaws? The Godfather? Is nothing sacred?

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

They Dumbed Down My Show, Damn Them

If anyone watches Arrested Development, you're familiar with it's brilliant sharp tongued quips and character interaction that is often unleashed at a frenzied pace. You're also aware that the ratings sucked the first two seasons, despite several Emmy Nominations, and a few wins.

I bought the season 1 DVD set, and it's one of the funniest seasons of any show, ever. I know season 2 is just as funny, if not moreso, if that's even possible. Well, imagine my shock when the first 3 episodes of the third season were noticeably lacking in the laughs category. Don't get me wrong, I laughed enough. But the non-stop stream of intelligent dialogue is gone. It's more deliberately paced, with a lot less of it. Which brings me to the other change-the narration from Ron Howard. It's as though there are longer lapses between narrations this season, and they are more about what's happening on screen then ever before, and in fact did something that really annoyed me. Jason Bateman(Michael Bluth) was saying something about "american males being in a perpetual state of Arrested Development"(get it?), and Ron Howard quips "Hey, that's the name of the show!". What?! What have they done to my show?!

Then I realized the dilemma of AD.

In order to stay on TV, AD has to get better ratings. But it's too smart a show to drag in the masses who'd rather watch King Of Queens, or any other laugh track induced yuck fest full of punch lines. AD never told outright jokes for laughs. It had much in common with Seinfeld, and Curb Your Enthusiasm in this regard. It relied on wit and situations. And some massive innuendo. It appears they have dumbed it down with the hopes it can gain viewers. Unfortunately, it won't gain them, it'll lose them. I understand the rationale, strictly on a survival plain, but isn't it better to go out on top after three seasons than to have a mediocre third season, and flame out?

Here's hoping the season picks up steam, and gets that bite back.

Friday, September 30, 2005

Thanks To Mr. August

For this wonderful quiz: Political quiz

I ended up being a 'Centrist' and the Pope...???? Which means I pretty much agree with both sides on some things, and disagree with them on others....that's the way I like it. And I'm a pope...yay!

I have to disagree with John August and his assessment that anyone who voted strongly agree with "People shouldn'’t be allowed to have children they can'’t provide for.". is saying they want more government proposed regulations... I meant it as common sense....they shouldn't be allowed to have children that they can't provide for...

Been Busy....Thinking Why I'm Not Busy


Here's a partial update:

I find that if I'm left to my own devices, and don't have someone else in the house, I become an even bigger recluse than I normally am...plus I procrastinate more now than ever. I guess I used writing to escape criticism from Katie for 'doing nothing', so I would take out my anger in a more constructive manner, by writing. Now that I don't have that, I am languishing behind my preferred pace. In a month, I wrote 3 screenplays. Since then, none.

So it comes down to this: I need someone pushing me, questioning me, and making me mad, or I am just another dumb white man. I have a weird kind of muse thing going, apparently. I need supervision. If I don't have it, my mind suffers long lapses of nothingness.

On the docket:

Join me next time as I make a huge confession-I don't know how to do a rewrite.

Monday, September 26, 2005

She's Gone! (She's gone) Oh I...(Oh I) I Better Learn How To Face....Err, Um..

Katie, my girlfriend has moved back to the homeland, NJ, and left me to fend for myself. Great! I miss her already. She does so much around here, and now I'm going to see just how much. Writing is going to have to take a backseat until I get up there at the end of October, what with getting a new job and all that crap. I have to work some real hours until then so we can be situated. Miss you Katie!

The thing is, I'm already feeling guilty about not writing, even though I've been slacking off anyway. Maybe I'll try and scribble ideas down and start them upon my return home. I think Hellfire is out of the question too. I don't have $30 to spare, I can't spare a square.

Looks like it's just me and my preproduction of Generator to tide me over.

Surely, I accept your condolences...

Saturday, September 24, 2005

It's A Small World...Of Losers

I have been using the term ridiculi for years now...just because I liked how it sounded, and never heard anyone else say it. Ever. I do tend to make up my own vocabulary on the fly. Something just strikes my fancy, and I just throw it out there.

Imagine my surprise when I visited the Urban Dictionary, and found my word in there?! RIDICULI

How dare they! I am so brilliant, that I came up with this monstrosity of a word, and they've stolen it!

But seriously, if you ever wonder if your idea is the only one of that sort at any given time, at any place, forget it. We all talk, think and speak the freaking same. Nothings original. Which is a scary thought, since we're supposed to be creating story's.

It appears to me, it's all a race to see who can get their identical ideas out there first. Like this, for instance: POE

I was hard at work, thinking how I was going to write my Edgar Allan Poe bio pic. I was knee deep in my minds outline, ready to put pen to paper when I stumbled across this massacre. I love Poe, and really wanted to write about him. I thought, There can't be another soul out there doing a Poe script. The guys been dead for about 160 years...what are the odds someone would finally devise the perfect idea for a film? Well, there you have it. And what are the frigging odds it would be Sly Stallone? Ugh....

Friday, September 23, 2005

If These People Are Commies, Sign Me Up!

Stars' Communist Files Revealed
Late screen siren Marilyn Monroe was a suspected communist and tracked by the FBI. Newly-released documents reveal Monroe was just a number of stars the Federal Bureau of Investigation kept files on - including John Lennon, Frank Sinatra, The Beach Boys, Louis Armstrong, Albert Einstein, Lucille Ball and Liberace. The Some Like It Hot actress was targeted after she applied for visa to visit Russia. She was then tracked meeting a communist group during a holiday to Mexico organized by Sinatra. Sinatra aroused suspicion because the FBI were tipped off he had attended sex parties with President John F. Kennedy. Lennon was added to the list when agents deduced he planned to disrupt the Republican National Convention in 1973, but struck him off because his drug habits rendered him incapable of being a revolutionary.

A History Of Violence

On September 23rd, 1973, somewhere around 4:30 am, I was born.

Interestingly enough, at around 12:30 am, on September 23rd, 1973, my Mother watched Rosemary's Baby and her water promptly broke. How's that for a sign?

I have my fathers eyes!

Now, if only I could have been named Damien....

Posting Extravaganza (Because I'm Drunk And It's 2:40 AM!)


Anyone enjoy Moonlighting? I just recently purchased seasons 1&2, and I love 'em. I used to watch it back when I was maybe 12-13. I thought Addison was hilarious then, and I think it now, too.

But one thing has me puzzled. What kind of kid was I, watching Moonlighting? It doesn't seem I was the target demographic. Come to think of it, I watched Cheers at that time to. Maybe it's the humor-both shows had the cocky/sarcastic male lead in Sam Malone and David Addison. Maybe it's the promise of relationship-and denial of said relationship- in both-Maddie and David, Sam and Diane? The game, if you will. But why the hell would that interest me when I was 12?

Dammit mom, you had to make me watch Luke and Laura on General Hospital, didn't you?! That must be it. Too much female supervision. Oh well. Maybe it just reflects my polished sense of humor? Yes, that's it.

I Want To Crack Open The County Clerks Windpipe

Remember that post I wrote about how Katie caused me to get three tickets? No? Well, that doesn't matter, I guess. But here's the end result, and some would say expected result. Which is really a shame.

The only ticket that would put points on my license was the illegal U-turn. And I'll be damned, a state which is pretty much thunderdome in terms of driving rules decides to nab me for an illegal u-turn at the only spot in Winter Park/Orlando where an illegal u-turn exists. Drivers down here are completely reprehensible. But anyway, instead of taking the points, I paid less of a fine, and had to take a 4 hour online traffic course within 90 days of payment. Since I had three different tickets, and paid them at different times, I became confused. To make this long story shorter, I was late by 5 days.

So there I am today, at the Orange County Courthouse, waiting in a humid, urine soaked, room with three people helping 100. After 45 minutes, finally, the grumpy wench summons me to her cave. I show her my certificate for the successful completion of the most inane class ever recorded. She immediately blows it off. "You're late, and now you owe money." I giggle. Not the ha ha type of giggle. The "
I may impact your semi-retarded smirk with my palm" variety. But I sit silently as she types my info into her Commodore 64. (seriously, with all these rip off fines, they can't buy new computers? Or how about buying actual employees? Arrrrg!)

She glances up at me, and says "That'll be 43.80." I look and ask politely, "Nothing can be done here? It was a mistake, and it's only 5 days later. I already payed $30 for this certificate." I am almost interrupted, almost, with "No sir. The state won't accept it. It's right here on the computer." I cackle a little more mean spirited this time. I say "Why do we need you? The computer does all the work." She grunts under her breath. I smirk like Ted Bundy at a freshman girl. "Will you be paying with cash or charge?" I respond, "No, and No." She says, "The process of license suspension will begin then." She hands me my meaningless certificate back. I walk out, ready to pummel my misfortune into someone's liver.

I am now down $50, and have 2 points on my license. And have to try for insurance in NJ. If you have never heard about NJ car insurance, let me tell you, it's the biggest swindle this side of ...I don't know, I don't fall for scams, but it's surely tops the list in the very very corrupt state of NJ.


Thursday, September 22, 2005

Time To Pop Out A Baby

Hellfire is holding a short horror script contest, in which the top 4 are melded into a DVD film, ala Creepshow. They recommend 20 pages. I'm ready to rummage through my smaller ideas that I haven't fleshed out into full fledged screenplays yet and cram out an entry just before the deadline, which is the 30th, if I'm not mistaken.

Go enter now! (you should be writing anyway!)

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

DeathDay Nears!


I have a very uneventful Birthday coming up. My 32nd. I know, I can hear everyone going "He's 32? He acts like a child!". (I do consistently get carded, so there's a feather in my cap)Well, that's only half true. I am a big kid, no doubt about that. But I'm also not immature, in a juvenile sense. I've met some guys in their 40's who I actually feel embarrassed for, because they act like infants. So, I am not of that variety. I am a definite Gen. X'er, if that even exists. I don't do anything in the way of the generation before me. My parents, and all my friends parents were married by the time they were 23, at the latest. All had kids by their mid twenties, and thought they had careers. It appears to me, they had jobs. And while my Mother and I consistently fight about what begin an adult means, I can sum it up in one sentence-be happy with what you do. My entire family had miserable, some well paying, jobs. They taught me that you suck it up, do what you hate, simply to make ends meet. No thanks.

I told my grandparents that I won't do anything I don't at least have an interest in. And I mean it. I quit my construction job of 7 years because it wasn't for me, and I knew it wasn't, for 7 years. And while my family tosses the word 'bum' or the more hip 'slacker ' around to describe me,(or is that paranoia?) I laugh in their face. I have no children. No car payment. No mortgage. No marriage. (much to Katie's chagrin) In other words, no big responsibilities that can tie me down to any place I may be residing at any specific time. I am responsible only for me. If I fail with writing, I won't be unhappy. I will die knowing I did everything I wanted, not what has been dictated to me.

Sure, I can hear the eyes roll. "Who does this punk think he is?" Well, that's sort of the answer, I am a punk in some regards. (Definition? A young person, especially a member of a rebellious counterculture group.) That is me. I make movies, write, Or Die Trying. Cheers to all you trailblazers and trendsetters!

So here we are, fast approaching my 32nd year, and I suddenly feel very happy about it.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Busy Doing Nothing, Or Something...

I must have the Summer burn out. I just don't have the fire to blog right now. I have my move coming up in a month or so, plus I'm intermittently doing my Generator Storyboards. Plus trying to find a new script to begin so that I won't be a miserable prick anymore.

So, since I am the laziest man alive right now, I will ask a question: On a desert island,(with a generator, tv and DVD player) you are allowed 5 DVDs. What do you bring, and why?

Mine are as follows:

1. The Breakfast Club-Rarely has a movie left me feeling so satisfied, for so long. I first watched this movie on VHS in about '87. I was enthralled with the hilarious back and forth dialogue, which was more intelligent than usual 'teen film' fare. The interaction of the characters was great. Some say they were stereotypical characters, but that was the point in the beginning of the film. By the end, they are all the same-lost teen agers. And it holds up very well for me, still being one of my favorite films.

2. The Shining-This is a must watch for me. It moves at a snails pace, and I love it. The camera slowly reveals things were not sure we're ready for. The music grates on the frayed end of each nerve, adding to the building tension. And we have an Oscar worthy performance from Nicholson. The scene with the bartender alone makes this disc worthy of inclusion.

3. Divorce, Italian Style-I have yet to see a dark comedy meet the standard of this one. It is hysterical, and plain awful. One of the funniest movies I have ever seen.

4. Pulp Fiction-I almost went with True Romance, but this is the pinnacle movie in QT's career thus far. I enjoy quoting it the most too. Any movie that has a line: "Oh shit, I shot Marvin in the face" is alright in my book.

5. Casino-It was tough for me to pick a Scorsese film and not take one of the three elite-Taxi Driver, Raging Bull or Goodfellas. But I find Casino more enjoyable, although a step down from those overall. I just think it's endlessly watchable. Faults and all.

Honorable mentions: High Fidelity, Deep Red, Clerks, Boogie Nights, Fright Night, April Fools Day, Magnolia, Fight Club, Mulholland Drive, The Game.

Friday, September 16, 2005

I Have Seen The Future, And It Is The Past

Download and watch the video. Then bow down. REVOLUTION IS NEAR

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Why Don't You Justify My Foot Up Your Ass?




Q: Justify why this is blue? A: Because there's a blue gel over the light!>>>




That's one of the last things I remember saying in film school. We had a fairly useless lighting lab. It was all technique, and no creativity, as usual. It could be argued that's all film school students are tech geeks sans any creativity whatsoever, but I don't think so. The problem lies with the instructors. They don't allow for creativity to bleed into their tried and true formulas.

I have had many an argument about the lighting I like to showcase in my films. I don't feel I need to justify every light shown on screen. The dogma says differently. They tell you, every light must obviously come from something on screen, or off screen, but the viewer must subconsciously say, "Oh, that soft light is coming from the street lamp just off screen". Me, being a huge fan of Lynch and Argento, vehemently deny this rule. It has a place, yes. But I feel if I want to bathe my film in red light, I should be able to do so. It's a stylistic choice. I like surreal images. I enjoy that disorienting feeling I first got when I watched Suspiria, or The Lost Highway. I don't believe it takes people out of the film, I believe it transplants them further into a dream like state. They become fully immersed in their perceived surroundings. Of course, if the movie blows, the lighting will be ripped apart. But if the movie sucks, it sucks. Period. So what's the difference?

If I'm filming a comedy, then perhaps the rule applies. I doubt my lighting style would work for any movies that are comedic in tone. But I know that. That's not the point. I feel the lighting is another tool filmmakers can use to draw people into the story, and I think it's under utilized because Directors are so worried about "How can I justify this blue light?". I think of films as an escape. Why can't I make my spot more unconventional, more surreal, for tourists?

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Kung Fu Monkey- A Pro

Just updated my links to show Mr. Rogers aka Kung Fu Monkey, is now under Pros/Resources, where he should of been many months ago. I hadn't really noticed until a few days ago. So, Mr Rogers, I have rectified the situation that I'm sure you never knew existed, or probably didn't care about anyway.

But I like your blog, so there you go...

And no, I am not kissing ass. I only link to blogs I like, hence my low link count. There are thousands of others I spit on, but that's neither here nor there...

Stupid &!^%&** Storyboards & Other Inane Conjecture


I'll admit it-the storyboarding is kicking my ass right now. I just feel like I'm getting nowhere. I'm at page 20 in the script, and have, like 60 storyboards already. Ugh! But now I'll calm myself, and pass along this: It is undeniably cool to be drawing out your own movie, page by page. I close my eyes, picture the scene, then sketch what I imagine.(well, try to...my skills are dead...as dead) It's kind of nice to flip through and take a gander at every shot in my film, just like I intended them. And in the end, it's going to make my work a breeze. "Shot 21 E! Lets go!". I glance down at shot 21-E, and I'll be damned, there it is, camera angle and everything. Then I go and shoot it. "Next!"

Of course, it'll be harder than that. But the fact is, if you're going to make your own movie, you have to make it as easy as possible-on yourself. Just running the camera and directing is going to be work enough. I may even have to do the lighting, which, to be honest, I really am not a fan of. I'm good at it, and understand the typical three light set-up(which I will not be using), I know all about HMI's, and I even know what barn doors are, and their function. But I tell you one thing-it's much to analytical, tedious, and time consuming for me to have to worry about. So I would love to find a lighting dude to help me out. (hint hint) I plan on getting an FXs guy, and maybe a composer, though I'd like to do the music myself. I have this dream of bass guitar and double bass drums for my entire soundtrack. It sounds awesome in my head. Probably sounds awful to everyone else. But hey, you can't understand it until you hear it, so back off! Auteur at work! ..... So....where was I?

Ah, yes, making things easier on yourself/myself. Add to all the above the fact that I'm asking these 'actors' to work for virtually nothing but maybe a meal (and beer!), and you see what we're dealing with here. The shit can hit the fan at any moment. The shoot I'm looking at will be over a few months time. It will also be overnight shoots. Perhaps 10pm-4am, with initial setup starting at 830pm. Put two and two together, and it equals problems. Actor one can't show up tonight? "Night's over! Everyone go home! I'll see you 7 days from today! Please, nobody cut their hair, shave or suddenly put on 10 pounds!" And that's why I have to delegate as many positions as possible. We're talking a 3 year voyage if I have to do it all. Just having people around me to take on responsibilities that I would prefer to do myself, but obviously can't, will help me get this film done in time for Fall '06, and the horror movie film fests.

And isn't making a film all we really want to accomplish, directly, or indirectly, anyway? Once you do that, the sky's the limit as far as I'm concerned. I even have another film I want to do immediately after Generator. So basically, my next 3 years, I want to film two features, back to back, and see what comes of them. Then, I'll judge the fallout, and decide if I'm worthy to move to the City Of Angels. I'll still be relatively young in three years. Plus, what if I accomplish more with Generator than I expect? (Who am I fooling? I know it'll be great..and I'm not just saying that) What if it finds distribution? Straight to DVD? Wins a prize at a film festival? Any of these situations can change my outlook for the better. Which is why I'm doing it. I don't expect an Oscar.(For Generator, that is*) I expect to make a kick ass genre film. And I think that's a fair expectation.

After all, if the movie sucks, what's the worst thing that can happen? Nothing. I made a feature film. It was hard work, but I learned a ton about myself, and the film process. The positives far outweigh the negatives, no matter how you slice it. It's the best bet in this "odds are slim to none" career choice.

------------------------------

The Atlanta Falcons got lucky. I hate them more than the Cowboys now. You would have thought they won the Super Bowl the way they were jumping around and gloating after the game. And the coach is the biggest buffoon in the game today. And I lost my fantasy game...so there!

---------

I tried to watch New York, New York, and I got to tell you, I am not into it at all. Firstly, it's a takeoff on those old musicals. Not a big fan. Secondly, It's over 2 1/2 hours long. Nope, can't do it. I watched 45 minutes, then it dawned on me-these characters and the dialogue could be straight from a 50's gangster movie. Which would have been cool, except that it's not. I understand what Scorsese was attempting- lets put these hard core, slimy characters in a sweet, sincere looking musical, and lets see what happens. The answer, unfortunately, is nothing. I will watch the entire thing with the Scorsese commentary, which I think is fine in this situation, though previously, in my film geek obsessive ways, I would never watch a film for the first time with the commentary on. I think being a film geek means I should watch the film first. But you know what? I am in no mood to watch it otherwise, so this is the best I can do. Okay?...Okay?! (Walks away, dejected and feeling embarrassed that I couldn't get through one of my idols films...I'm a hack...)

---------------------------------------

Finally today, to answer all those anti-blogger blogs popping up in the ultimate irony, I will respond to two of their most frequent attacks.

#1-Bloggers are the ultimate narcissists, and are so self serving it is enough to make one ill.
Yes, I am a narcissist. Every writer is a self depreciating narcissist. It's not an enviable way to live, frankly. What a brilliant observation, though I find it funny that by blogging about their hatred for blogs, they are being the ultimate narcissists.

#2- Bloggers think every minute detail of their life is interesting, and therefore blather on about it to anyone who will read it, giving them the feel of importance.
Of course my life is interesting. Look at all my visitors! Yay for me! Wow, am I that transparent? Yes! And purposely so! It is a blog! Much like a diary, except for the public, so of course I think it's interesting, it's about me! I make no promise of enlightenment, or knowing where the golden ark resides(well, I do know, but...), but I do tell you what I think...it's not as if I'm selling a product. I am just venting, in a way. What's the harm?

Monday, September 12, 2005

Now, That's No Update!


I haven't been posting much, obviously. I have football season on my mind, plus that Producer supposedly wants to have a sit down..(do people really use Mafia terminology now?). I have no idea what they really want, but, as I said, they appear to be truthful in who they are. But still...

I'm going to send out AFD2 in a last ditch effort to get any information for myself. The main problem, as I see it is not knowing if Mancuso has already received it. But fuck it, I'm sending it anyway.

Generator storyboards are about 1/3 finished. I get so frustrated with my hideous drawing skills. I know I can resort to stick figures, since they're for personal use anyway, but for some reason, I'm taking it as a challenge, so I get way to detailed, then my stomach churns when I see I can't do it. Hence the length of time it's taken for only 1/3. I have to just suck it up and admit, I cannot draw a picture. There, I said it. Hopefully, I can get past this 'wanting to be the best at everything even to myself' mentality that seems to be prevalent with everything I do. Which leads us into...

(If you have no interest in the NFL, or fantasy football, skip the next paragraph as it will seem even more geeky than it really is)

Fantasy football. I picked Javon Walker of the Packers as my number one wide receiver. He tore his knee up yesterday, in the first game of the year. He's done. Now this is two seasons a great player of mine has been injured on opening day. So I'm scrambling to make a deal, but the owners all know this, and of course try to rip me off in my desperation. So fuck 'em. I'm not dealing anyone. Meanwhile, I need Dunn of Atlanta to outscore Westbrook of Philly tonight. Even though I'm an Eagles fan. Great, isn't it? Here's hoping the scenario plays like this: Dunn has a great game, but Mcnabb of Philly carries the Eagles on his back and they win rather handily. Westbrook has a good game, but he doesn't touch the ball enough to do real damage. Yeah, like that will happen.

(End football talk)

I have the Martin Scorsese collection on DVD, the one with Raging Bull. It also includes New York, New York. It's the only Scorsese film I have yet to see, and I'm almost afraid to since everyone says it's his only misfire. I don't want that to taint my favorite Director. I'll let you know what I think as I watch it tonight after my Eagles whip up on Atlanta...again.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

It's Coming- 02/01/2006

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Time For The Percolator (Repeat Until Annoyed)

I have mucho ideas flooding my head, and am not sure which to run with. On the one hand, I really want to write this kick ass western that I've been thinking about for months. On the other, I have this really great idea for a thriller, and it would be my most accessible screenplay yet. It definitely has the mainstream appeal. Plus, I really enjoy doing the research for it. Then I have a gaggle of screenplays in purgatory, awaiting their fate. I've written at a record pace for the past few months, with 4 screenplays spewing out of me. Which means at some point I have to engage them again with the dreaded rewrites. So, I have a lot of picking and choosing to do.

Sidenote: I really wanted to write my Zombie comedy, but shelved it when I heard about Shaun Of The Dead. Maybe I'll pick it up again.

Hope everyone had a nice Labor Day. I know I had enough burgers in Fort Myers to bust a gut. And enough bug bites to cause me to consider an acid bath.

Friday, September 02, 2005

I Know Less About The Movie Business Than...Anyone In The World, But..


In the 80's, I went through a huge horror movie kick. I loved them all. In the mid 80's, April Fool's Day was released. And it completely polarized the horror community. (In fact, go to any horror film forum, and bring up AFD, and see the varied response you get.) I loved it. It was funny, and refreshing. The acting was good, and I didn't want to kill any of the characters off, which is unusual for a slasher flick. Normally, I hate every character in the movie, and root for the killer. Not so this time. Bif was damn funny...

So almost two years ago, after watching my brand spanking new AFD dvd, I was thinking about the plot heavily, as I often do after viewing a film. I jumped in the shower, and like a shot of adrenaline, the idea of the sequel came to me. I had never even thought of a sequel, or of writing it, because really, what's the point? I don't own the characters, and I've been told countless times "you can't sell a sequel"But I would not be denied. I had to write it, if only for me. The only way to describe the feeling is if you discovered Plutonium by accident, and wanted to tell everyone about it. I was in my own personal jubilee zone. The only time in my life such a zone existed, me being a morose, depressed personality and all.

Cut to six months later, and I have a polished first draft. So I'm cruising the net late one night, when I decide to look up Deborah Foreman, star of AFD, Valley Girl, My chauffeur and many other '80s flicks I have a great fondness for. She has an email for her new business, and I shoot a nice fan letter over to her, also stating I've written a sequel, and would she give it a gander. I think I wrote, "If it is garbage, and I have wasted your time, feel free to lambast me on you website", and I left my contact info.

So I go to sleep, thinking nothing of it. I wake up and check my email, and to my amazement, she has responded. I nervously stare at the title of the email, which reads RE:April Fool's Day 2. I stare for five minutes, wondering how bleak the response will be. I click on it quick, like ripping a band aid off an infected cut. And she proceeds to tell me she is very interested, and to send it to her. And if she doesn't like it, she will "Lambast me to everyone and anyone she knows". I stare at my screen which has her address on it. Then I look at my script. Well, needless to say, I had a new third act I was working on, and I was only at page 68. I responded to her that I would send it shortly, as I had to write another 25-30 pages. (How's that for honesty?) She says fine, and I'm off.

I finish it in two days, and overnight it. I shoot her an email just to tell her to expect it, and I sleep like a rock. The next afternoon, I open up my email, which has her response resting in wait. The title? Blank. Nada. A bucket of ice water pours over my shoulders, and I am experiencing some slight nausea. I open the email, which is very short and succinct. I scan it first, not really reading the words, and realize it's all of maybe ten words. I look away, knowing that I have been rejected, just like Diane Pizzo did in the eighth grade. With a smile. (Damn her!) Then I actually read it, and it says, "Jason, I loved it. Call me. 555.555.5555" (the number was further down, so I didn't notice it while scanning) After breaking down onto the floor with weakness in the knees, I begin my pacing, back and forth. Little known fact about me(unless you've met me): Speaking with people for the first time is like torture for me. I stammer, I look anywhere but their eyes, I mumble, and I say some of the dumbest things this side of Mike Tyson. But I get the nerve, and finally, 4 hours later I dial the phone...and promptly hang up, because no, I am not ready. Let me get a beer first.

Finally, I do call. And she answers. I stammer a little, finally blurting out, so you liked it, huh? She doesn't even have my name yet, but I have decided to skip ahead, evidently. She gives me the enthusiastic greeting, and we proceed to have a half hour discussion about my script. She tells me her worries with it, and she tells me some things she thought were the funniest lines of dialogue she's ever read. We talk about how I would direct it. About how we would get financing, and if I knew anyone. I tell her my ideas, and she tells me hers, like a few different ending ideas. It is by far the most exhilarating conversation I have ever had. By the end, she offers me a letter of intent to star, which I grudgingly accept. I now have my star. She gives me a few of her old contacts, and we hang up, sure this is leading somewhere. And it is.

Later in the week, through her contacts, I get my first manager, who loves the script. He agrees it has some work to be done on it, but says he'll track down Frank Mancuso Jr., who produced the first, to see if he would give it a read. We must go through him, then Paramount, because one or the other owns the characters. And Mancuso is in tight there. All of this happened in three months time, all because I had the bright idea of sending an email to a person who I thought would never respond.

So, where does it stand now? Damn if I know. I learned the hard way we, 'aspiring screenwriters that is, think in terms of real time, and managers, agents and producers think in terms of film time. And film time is much slower. Last I heard, the script hadn't reached Mancuso yet, but my manager still had a big interest in doing so, and said if he didn't believe in the script, he wouldn't track down anyone. When he hears something, then I will too. And that is that. I wait like the thousands of other hopefuls, hoping against all that is sane that my script will get read by the one person who can do something with it. But I have faith. I was in this position before, and that one person gave me all I have in regards to the screenplay going through the proper channels, so who's to say what will happen next? All I know is, I was just some punk just moved to FL from Jersey, didn't have a pot to piss in, and I took a gamble on something I believed in. Has it paid off? Just from the experience, in a way, yes.

So what's the elongated moral to this story? Write something you believe in. Don't write that high concept Rom/Com because that's what sells, unless you want to. Take some chances. Email and cell phones are impressive technologies, and they open all kinds of contact options, as does the internet. I cannot stress enough how useful the internet is. I have the contact numbers for all kinds of producers and agents, all for free. It takes a little creativity to get, like signing up to Variety or Imdb pro during a free trial offer, or something along those lines, but it is worth it.

Another great...and I mean great idea is to find actors who were once well known, and maybe haven't been making films for awhile. Watch their old movies. See if they can fit a role in your script. After all, they don't forget how to act. Next, get their contact info. Many of them have personal emails to contact them directly. Never underestimate what contacts former working actors still have. Now, I'm not talking a Burt Reynolds old time star, but someone like Judd Nelson, or that guy from Gremlins. How about Andrew McCarthy? Shit, take a look at the old horror movie staples, such as Allison Steele. I have sent emails to each of these actors, and all responded. These are actors who will be approachable, and open to reading your script. And they may hold the key to your success. They may not want to act anymore, and that's fine, but you'll find you actually get somewhere with these folks, instead of getting the run around constantly. Make sure you're complimentary, and mention some of their notable performances as your favorites. But not the role they're known for(Like The Breakfast Club). One of their second tier movies is more impressive.

Because of Deborah Foreman, my script was sent to George Clooney(Section Eight Productions), Bruce Campbell, Dean Devlin, Frank Mancuso and Anthony Hickox(?). I don't know if they even read it, but it was sent to them. And really, that's the first step, isn't it?

Now, go write a story you love, and look up James Farentino! Actually, I think I will look up James Farentino....

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

The World Is A Toilet

During the news last night, I became misty eyed when a man described his final moments with his wife. He couldn't hold onto her any longer, and she knew this. She said her goodbyes and was engulfed by the rising tides. It was perhaps the worst thing I have heard in my life, just imagining the torture this man will endure for the rest of his life.

Unfortunately, my sympathy turned to extreme rage when I witnessed the video of the looters. These people should be shot on sight. Dead. Sure, stealing some bread and water in a semi peaceful manner, okay, in these desperate times...I can accept that. Stealing televisions and jewlery, setting buildings ablaze, and shooting cops-I can only hope they are shot dead and added to this already horrific body count. And it will only get worse. Thankfully, I read some citizens are taking the law into their own hands by force. These people should be given medals.

Using a tragedy to get yourself a new pair of Adidas makes me want to kill. So hopefully, you'll dress like a target.




├ćnema

Some say the end is near.
Some say we'll see armageddon soon.
I certainly hope we will.
I sure could use a vacation from this

Bullshit three ring circus sideshow of
Freaks

Here in this hopeless fucking hole we call LA
The only way to fix it is to flush it all away.
Any fucking time. Any fucking day.
Learn to swim, I'll see you down in Arizona bay.

Fret for your figure and
Fret for your latte and
Fret for your hairpiece and
Fret for your lawsuit and
Fret for your prozac and
Fret for your pilot and
Fret for your contract and
Fret for your car.

It's a
Bullshit three ring circus sideshow of
Freaks

Here in this hopeless fucking hole we call LA
The only way to fix it is to flush it all away.
Any fucking time. Any fucking day.
Learn to swim, I'll see you down in Arizona bay.

Some say a comet will fall from the sky.
Followed by meteor showers and tidal waves.
Followed by faultlines that cannot sit still.
Followed by millions of dumbfounded dipshits.

Some say the end is near.
Some say we'll see armageddon soon.
I certainly hope we will cuz
I sure could use a vacation from this

Silly shit, stupid shit...

One great big festering neon distraction,
I've a suggestion to keep you all occupied-

Learn to swim.

Mom's gonna fix it all soon.
Mom's comin' round to put it back the way it ought to be.

Learn to swim.

Fuck L Ron Hubbard and
Fuck all his clones.
Fuck all those gun-toting
Hip gangster wannabes.

Learn to swim.

Fuck retro anything.
Fuck your tattoos.
Fuck all you junkies and
Fuck your short memory.

Learn to swim.

Fuck smiley glad-hands
With hidden agendas.
Fuck these dysfunctional,
Insecure actresses.

Learn to swim.

Cuz I'm praying for rain
And I'm praying for tidal waves
I wanna see the ground give way.
I wanna watch it all go down.
Mom please flush it all away.
I wanna watch it go right in and down.
I wanna watch it go right in.
Watch you flush it all away.

Time to bring it down again.
Don't just call me pessimist.
Try and read between the lines.

I can't imagine why you wouldn't
Welcome any change, my friend.

I wanna see it all come down.
suck it down.
flush it down.

Being Gun Shy With A Gun In Your Face

I have been talking to this guy for about 5 days now. He works for a independent producer, who we'll call Dave. He tells me they have real interest in some kick ass script ideas, and I tell him about my first script, which I always thought would be a great low budget film. He loves the idea, and I sign a non-disclosure agreement with them. Of course, my nerves being rattled at this point, I immediately second guess that decision. I look them both up multiple times on IMDB, and they are who they say they are. The guy I'm talking to is the special effects guy for 'Dave's' productions, which I see actually do exist. I google them several times with different variations, something like "**** ***** scams" or ***** and **** production scams", and nothing negative can be found. I even saved the i.m's, just in case I would need proof of our conversations.

The bottom line is, I have found nothing bad on either of them, they both have credits on IMDB in their respective fields, and my script is registered. Yet, I still am nervous about it.

I think it's time I show them my first born, and see where it goes. It's time to bite the bullet. Even if it's low, low money, if I get a writing credit, I am happy. However, if it's low low money, with no credit at all, it will be a harder decision. Then what? Well, I've decided it's still a sale, no matter how small. I am trying to live as a professional writer, and everyone has to start somewhere. How can I turn down any amount when someone wants to pay for my work?

Hopefully, they will dig the script enough, and then I can give you guys the nitty gritty.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Tom Savini, Generator SFX



Okay, maybe that title is a little bit presumptuous. But I did email him a very complimentary letter lauding his skills, which I really do think are the best out there. Of course, I intercut the praise with some requests for help on my first feature. And like the kindly gent he is, he responded almost immediately. He said

Thanks Jason, and good luck. I would love to help, but can't say when. I am really, really busy.

Probably a nice way of saying no, but hey, at least he responded to a fan, which is more than I can say for some lesser talents. And who knows, he's been known to help out on independent features for young filmmakers almost free of charge.

So I decided to send him a response to his response in which I basically said, "If you have any time in the future, and feel like getting your hands bloodier, than by all means shoot me an email." I then left my contact info., and that was that.

Anyway, that's my brush with what could have been for this very early morning on the 30th of August, as I wait for my wash to dry.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Out Of Left Field


Suddenly, my first screenplay may have some interest. Stay tuned for all the sordid, then heartbreaking details.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

I'm A Tad Confused

I am currently storyboarding Generator, and have come across a problem. Do I layout each camera angle, or the overview of the shot? As it stands right now, I have 6 different camera angles/shots for the first scene. I'm wondering if I should just show the scene as I picture it, then work within that framework once I begin shooting? Or am I supposed to be this obsessive with it, and break it down from wide shot, to Cl/U, then to Medium shot...ect..? I guess that could be kept for the actual shot list. Anyone have a semi educated opinion on how in depth storyboards are supposed to be??

To The Victor... Belong The Spoils

This weeks winner for funniest search to reach my blog, which was ranked #1 in the search results, is exactly as follows-"sounds of people being constipated"

I have no idea why someone would type that into a search engine, but I'll keep my snide remarks to myself.

Dear Mr. Chuck Palahniuk

A man can share a beer with another man without it being a homosexual act. He can look after another man without it being a homosexual act. He can even be jealous of another man without it being a homosexual act.

None of the above points to homosexual tendencies. Unless, apparently, you are a homosexual.

That is all.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Nitty Gritty

I finally entered DIRT. into FD. It came to 136 pages, almost exactly what I estimated. So the final tally is: 12 days, 105 pages. And plenty of editing/rewriting to do. Now to do my shot list and story boards for Generator. Only a few months to go!

Monday, August 22, 2005

And Now For Something Completely Differ.....Er...Um...I Mean, Exactly The Same


I really am at a loss for words at how Hollywood is remaking film after film. It gives me that hopeless feeling, like in my nightmares when I know I'm dying, and I'm resigned to that fact. That's how totally helpless I feel. I try and write fairly original stuff. I put my own unique outlook on everything I write. I play with conventions. I stay away from cliches. And this is what I have to deal with?

Rififi remake

For those that don't know, Rififi is a classic french film noir. One of the top 10, I would say. And lets hear it for Hollywood, they decide to remake yet another great movie, instead of maybe making an original. I'm so disgusted, even with Pacino starring.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Nobody Agrees On Anything Anymore


I'm window shopping for a new toy, a DV camera to shoot my feature with. I've been leaning towards the Panasonic DVX100a for awhile now. Once I mention that to people, they say "How about the Canon XL2?" Okay. But it's pricier, and yeah, it has the ability to change lenses, but the lenses are a couple of thousand each, and I highly doubt I'll buy one for this shoot. Other than that, I think the DVX has everything going for it. Until I saw the new Panasonic. Good God, is it a thing of beauty. Real native 16:9, 24p shooting. HD. And a price tag double that of the DVX. So needless to say, everyone is giving me different suggestions so that I don't even know why I wanted the DVX in the first place.

Can't we all just get along?

Friday, August 19, 2005

Now That's Entertainment!


Here is my living room. And all my toys. Much to my girlfriends chagrin. "What we own ends up owning us." Damn right!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Looking California, Feeling New Jersey

It is set in stone I'm heading back to Jersey, the place I vacated almost two years ago. I lived in Jersey all my life until that fateful day, Jan 23rd, 2004. Now, at the behest of my girlfriend, I'm off to home base in October. Good news and bad news. All my buddies are up there, and I could really use a drink. Afraid 'have a drink' will turn into too many lost weekends. Don't get me wrong, I love getting a nice buzz going, and I even love just drinking a weekend away every now and then.

But I have that gene, the one that says, "So you had 18 beers and 18 shots? Try for 24!" So do my friends. Well, the few that aren't married, that is. I believe the crew is now split 50/50 between married/not. I guess I fall on both sides, since I have a long relationship, but am not hitched up. At any rate, my main goal is to shoot my horror movie, and kick ass promoting it myself. And it appears the next half year is set up for great things. I believe the move down here has done some good. I came down here with no scripts finished, and ended up with 5. And I'm working on another 5. I think it helped me focus, which is hard to do when you're stuck in the same old habits, with the same old people, even if they're great people. We shall see how it ends up.

Monday, August 15, 2005

My Hand Is A Sore, Ugly, Stiff, Claw


I finished DIRT. tonight! Hand wrote 94 pages the last two days. My hand is a bloody mess. But anyway, I haven't updated the progress bar since it's not in FD yet, thereby preventing me from getting a final page count. But I'll go ahead and max out the bar and we can get back to that. 12 days, so many some-odd pages.

Time to play with Madden, the cat!

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Contrary To The Blog Title

..this is not a place of healing for real , physical constipation problems. So, for the 13 people in the last two days who have been 'Googling' for a remedy, and been led here, I am sorry to say I have none. Although one would assume eating a shit load of McDonald's would help.

--JD

con·sti·pa·tion Audio pronunciation of "constipation" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (knst-pshn)
n.

1. Difficult, incomplete, or infrequent evacuation of dry hardened feces from the bowels.
2. Obstruction; stultification.

Mmm Bop

I decided to scrap my daily round up style in favor of my more natural- throw a few updates in the blog here and there, instead of one novel sized. Too much writing, especially when I'm writing.

In any event, I might finish my script today. Don't let the progress bar fool ya, I haven't typed all of my chicken scratch into Final Draft yet. If I do finish today, it'll be 12 overall days, which includes two days in which I did nothing.

I have been on a Nintendo kick on eBay. Right now, I'm trying for my favorite system of all time, Super Nintendo, for $20. Plus I've been playing my old NES and N64. Just a phase I go through from time to time.

I figured out a way to save money. Here's the basic idea, which can be formulated to fit any item. I bought Baldur's Gate a few months back for 99 cents. It's a 6 year old game. But it's new to me. Maybe if I stay back one full cycle of releases on electronics, I'll save a ton of cash. For instance, I haven't got a flat screen monitor. I think I can get one for under $100. If I had tried 3 years ago, we're talking $999. If I could just put new product out of my mind, I think I could be very happy. And there's your tip of the day-be content with what you have, until what you don't have costs as much as what you do have cost when originally purchased.

Time to write!

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Fool For A Lifetime

I wake up at 2pm, again in the bedroom, and not in the living room which is where I fell asleep. I come out and jump on the PC. After checking up on some fantasy sports, I get a shower. I come back out, and watch a little bit of Judge Mathis, thinking about my script. The disgust from not writing the previous night runs deep. I get back on the pc and check up on blogs, then my email again. Classmates.com is having a free trial, and it peaks my interest, even though anyone I'm not friends with from high school currently, I probably don't care for. I click the free trial, and get to filling out the info. required for things such as these. Which is everything about me. I finish and confirm my account, which unbeknownst to me, cost me $59. I see I have signed up for the Gold Membership without trying to. No free trial for me! I immediately feel my stomach plunge into a sickness I can only describe as the feeling after being kicked in the balls. I send an immediate email to customer support, and sign off the the net hastily. I sit and watch Judge Milian again. This show is so entertaining, but also shows such a faulty system, it makes me really question a lot of laws, and things of that nature.

Katie walks in, sweating like a marathon runner (no air in her car), which I'm sure will make her reaction to the $59 extremely rationale. To my surprise, she seems only slightly irked, and we sit and cuddle around for a few minutes. I need WD-40 to try and 'fix' my truck, so I leave and enter Albertsons. I find the WD-40 hidden behind racks of engine cleaners, gas additives and other scams. I decide on two 2-liters of Diet cherry vanilla Dr. Pepper, seeing as it's buy one, get one free. I leave, excited that my truck will be running safely again instead of scaring other drivers and pedestrians.

I spray the acceleration cable with the wd40 liberally, which really means I saturated it, and all of it's components. I go back inside and forget about it. I check the roast I put in at 3pm, and it's not finished yet. We're both famished, though. I sit outside with her on our screened in porch and talk about moving again. And again, we fight about apartments. She walks back in the apartment after her cigarette is finished, and I follow. We then get in a ridiculous argument about which towns in South Jersey are where in relation to her store, Gertrude Hawk Chocolates. For clarification purposes, the three towns in question are Pennsauken, Blackwood and the Quaker Bridge Mall. I inform her that Blackwood is in the middle of the other two, and she laughs and says I'm incorrect rather snootily, then proceeds to show me exactly where they are. But unwittingly, she confirms I'm right, at which point I yell about the stupidity of her arguing with me about something so trivial, and she yells back I'm an asshole, or something. She heads to the room, and slams the door.

I decide it's time to buckle down and write, since it's already around 7pm. And write I do. I end up writing 45 pages in my notebook, making up for the prior nights embarrassing outcome, and then some. As I write, I listen to music through headphones. Last night was a nice shuffle of Danzig 2 & 4, Faith No More King For Day...Fool For A LifeTime, Soundgarden Superunknown, Tool Lateralus, Pink Floyd The Final Cut, A couple of Faces tunes, and a few Metallica tunes as well. I write to the soundtrack for 3 and a half hours. At 10:30, I take a ride in my truck, which runs good now. I get gas and air for my front tire. I get back about 15 minutes later, feeling good about myself. I check on Katie, who is asleep. She informs me with a perturbed for being disturbed tone, that she will not be eating the roast, or which I saved a nice portion just for her. I let sleeping dogs lie, and come back and begin typing in the now 61 hand written pages. I surf the web for an hour, checking up on the usual suspects. I then begin the hideous act of typing in those pages, so I begin. After about 20, I am spent, and it's now 130am, so I figure I may have an early night, which I feel good about considering how much work I got done.

I throw in Clerks cartoon, disc 2, and turn the commentary on. As I'm enjoying the first episode, Katie awakens and comes out into the living room. Actually, she awakens because I go in to get some blankets. Actually, she wakes up because I see her shift in the bed when I get my blankets, so I return to kiss her on her forehead, and tuck her in. Nevertheless, she is now out in the living room. She wants Cheerios, which needless to say, is not on the diet we started, yesterday. I say I'm not going out at 2am for Cheerios, and for her to go back to bed. She states she's hungry, and I say have some roast. "I can't, it's too heavy." After several minutes, maybe fifteen, she finally says fine, just drive me to Steak & Shake, or something else that has a drive through. She doesn't care for the diet at this moment, obviously. But I remind her anyway. Now I know she definitely does not care as she snaps at me. I say fine, and we're off. On the way out the door, I say we're taking my truck, proud as a man usually is when he fixes something. She says fine. We hop in the truck and I start it up. As I pull through the parking lot, I realize it's not fixed anymore. I am accelerating without hitting the gas again.

Pissed off, I turn around and park it with a screech.(ever hold the gas and the brake together? Then you get a good idea what it would be like driving). It's no 145am, and we get in her car. I drive to Steak & Shake. I don't know the menu, which sends my cranky lover into a mini fit. But I inform her, I had only dined there once, at 4am, while hammered. We get to the ordering point, and we order some hodge podge of garbage. I get a shake only, because I'm not hungry. She gets some meal deal, but replaces the soda with a coffee shake. And we're off. Or, no we're not. It takes at least 10 minutes to get to the window. Once at the window, we find out it's 12$, but we only have 9-something. I tell them to take off my shake. (FYI-The reason we didn't anticipate the price is her meal was $6.80, but upgrading it with the shake made it another $2). (FYI #2-The reason we couldn't use out debit card is because there's no money in there, I wasted it on Classmates, apparently). We finally get lost, and go inside the apartment around 215am. She eats, and doesn't really like the food, so she leaves it for me to inhale, and I do at 245am. We talk in the bedroom until 315am. She has to get up for work at 630, so I ask if the alarm is set. She says it is, and off I go to sleep while watching the Clerks Cartoon commentaries.

At 5am, I am sprung to life by her alarm blasting. I head in and tell her it's still set for the prior day, and I'll fix it. I set it for 630, and sleepily head back out. 10 minutes later, I hear it again, and incensed, head back into the room. I fiddle with it, and mistakenly hit the radio button, so that Michael Bolton is screaming at me. In a panic, I try to turn it off, but to no avail. Katie slams snooze and knocks the clock to the floor. She yells "Don't worry about it!", but I am worried. I hate that damn alarm sound. I head back out and fall asleep to Clerks at 530am.

Friday, August 12, 2005

King For A Day...Fool For A Lifetime

I just finished writing 45 pages tonight. Now I have about 60 pages to enter into Final Draft. I think that will translate to approximately 35 pages, typed. I write extensively tomorrow morning as I try and adapt my blogging style to Mr. Kevin Smith's.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Day Of The Dead


I fall asleep at 5am to Seinfeld Season 3 . I awake at 1:30pm having mysteriously been transported to the bedroom at some point in the morning. I jump online while sipping my coke, and read some mail, disappointed at the Ebay 'Item not won' message awaiting me. I tried to gank a Criterion Collection DVD, Night and Fog, for $3.00. I lost it by 4 cents. Next I check my blog and read the usual gaggle of visitors comments. Feeling burnt out from the very opinionated mood I was in the day prior, I ignore all events that require typing, including blogging and entering my next 16 pages of hand written script into Final Draft.

I listen to Danzig 4 as I attempt to play Baldurs Gate for awhile. After deciding that I don't feel like geeking out on RPG's all day, I decide maybe I should get a shower. Turns out the maybe is a definitely as I stink like a homeless person. I get out of the shower, refreshed and looking forward to my day ahead, which supposedly means more writing. I instead trek outdoors for the first time since Ft. Myers, with the exception of getting the mail in hopes I have a DVD, or going food shopping. The sun hurts my eyes immediately, but I forge forward. It dawns on me I may miss Fall more than I thought as the sun beats on my back. It also comes to me that I may not miss it at all, since I'm moving back to NJ, maybe as soon as October 1st. That makes me smile a nostalgic smile for a moment before I pop the hood on my big green truck. I fiddle with the acceleration cable for a minute or ten, then go to the mail box. I get Tobe Hooper's The Funhouse in the mail, and am excited more than I should be for such a mediocre movie. Back when my parents were first divorced, when I was about eleven, my dad would pick me and my sister up for what became the semi annual visit, then annual, then never by the time I turned sixteen. We used to watch Funhouse all the time, and I have no idea why. Same with Coleco Vision Tarzan, but that's another story. Perhaps I feel all nostalgic about it, and that's why I sought it out like a crack head.

Katie gets home finding me vegging out watching The People's Court. I get mad at Judge Milian, because she's wrong. But I say hello to Katie and kiss her since she brought me home Mcdonalds. We go food shopping later (hoping to jump back on our diet) only to find the circular we have, with the great deals in it, starts tomorrow. We buy a couple of roasts and get the hell out of there as a mother tries half heartedly to contain her two jerk off sons from yelling and screaming like infants on fire, and I whole heartedly try to contain myself from ripping her a new asshole.

We get home, and I again check on my truck as she cooks. I figure out all I may need is some WD-40 to lube up the cable, and satisfied with that, I return inside to my cave. As Katie questions me on every apartment complex in South Jersey, I begin to get slightly annoyed. Not at her, really, but at my life in general. It's the usual "I need to write soon, and I'm answering questions about square footage?!". I realize it's my own fault and try to be calm as the barrage continues, only to lose my cool and end up fighting for what seems like hours, all because, frankly, I'm cranky and I know everything. Katie slams the bedroom door at 11pm saying "Maybe you should just live with Smyth, faggot!". Which I guess is my fault again since I threatened her with moving in with my buddy Smyth instead of her during the fight. Smart as a wip, I'm not.

Feeling really shitty about myself, and thinking I may just be a construction worker posing as a writer, I decide to check my mail once more, and wallow in self pity for the entire night. Those aforementioned 16 pages from last night made me very unhappy. Basically, I was reaching for something, and it never came. All that came out was shit. An here I sit, blabbing to my blog instead of buckling down and making something out of nothing.

At 11:56pm, ten and a half hours after I awoke, I finally get down to doing what I should've done immediately. I look over at my writing table in anticipation of the next several hours, and shudder to think what time I'll go to bed. I calm down as I realize I'll fall asleep at 5am to Seinfeld Season 3. I'll awaken at 1:30pm having mysteriously been transported to the bedroom at some point in the morning. I'll jump online while sipping my coke...

****I watch The Funhouse from 12:30 to 2am. I am surprised by how much better it is than I remember. I feel the urge to order all things Tobe Hooper, but stay away from eBay for the time being. I surf the web, reading a few blogs before getting caught up in a stupid top twenty movie list at YMDB.COM. While listening to Danzig 4, I try to start up Baldur's Gate again, but don't have the drive for it. I decide to surf all my sites, then update my blog. I lay down with the intent of taking in a few episodes of Curb before snoozing away with my writing schedule off track for the first time since I started this program 2 screenplays ago. I feel shitty as I realize I'm a lazy ass today. But I have a few ideas up my sleeve for tomorrow....the last time I see is 3:33am...