Tuesday, February 27, 2007

'Twas the night before Cinequest...

...and all through the studio, not a creature was stirring, not even Hal Ashby.
The lenses were all packed up with care, with hopes that a filmmaker would soon be there.
The film was all nestled all snug in their cans, while visions of an f/16 danced in their heads.
And I in my kerchief and my Uniball in its cap, had just settled down for a long writer's nap.
When out in the parking lot, there arose such a clatter, I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like the Flash, tore open the shutters and threw up the sash
The moon on the breast of the new fallen fake snow, gave the luster of a shooting day to the objects below.
When what to my voyeuristic eyes should aflicker, but a miniature grip truck and eight tiny filmmakers.
With a smart looking driver, so lively and trustworthy, I knew in a moment it must be Halfdan Hussey.
More rapid than a shutter, his coursers they came, and he whistled and shouted and called them by name.
Now Dreyer! ,now Bergman! ,now Chaplin and Godard!
On Truffaut! On Siegel! On Kurosawa and Fellini!

--We leave for Cinequest in the morning. I'll be blogging every night, or morning, depending on how late the nights become. Look for videos, pics and blog entries from all the FWW Films gang on www.bloodcar.com and www.fakewoodwallpaper.com. I promise a picture each day as well, as they really spice up the blog.

A little festival update: The Mendoza Line approaches. .278. Put us back on top Cleveland and NY Underground.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

The Mendoza Line?

As you may or may not know, Blood Car was recently accepted to the Atlanta Film Festival. As stated on our website, it's our third non-consecutive appearance at the film festival but our first with a feature film. This one is special because Atlanta is the home of Blood Car. It's where the film lives, no matter where it shows. Had we not been invited, it would have been like being turned away at your own party. I'm looking forward to that parade this April.

But as the road to Atlanta was once paved with bodies and destruction, BC's road to Atlanta is no different. We've left a lot of film festival bodies in our wake, or conversely, they've left us in their wake. Our list of rejections is a who's who in the film festival yearbook. Berlin, Rotterdam, Sundance, Slamdance, SXSW, and more.

On the up side, our current average is .307, which in baseball is fabulous. Our goal is to remain above the Mendoza line(.200), the legacy of shortstop Mario Mendoza of the Pittsburgh Pirates, amongst other teams. Therein lies the boundary between extremely poor and merely below average. Mendoza's career batting average is .215, his nadir coming in his last year in the majors with Texas when he hit .118. However, his personal worst must unarguably be the 1979 season with Seattle when he played over 140 games and still hit .198. Strangely enough, in his 1977 season with the Pirates, he actually pitched for two innings. Judging from the stats, he walked the first two batters he faced and the third homered. I can only assume his hanging breaking ball cost the Pirates the game. Career ERA: 13.50

This being FWW's rookie season in the festival circuit, we hope to remain above .300 like so many great MLB rookies of yesteryear. Boggs, DiMaggio, Williams, etc. I'll update you as necessary.

We're waiting to hear back from quite a few festivals with March dates including Florida, Ann Arbor, Cleveland, New York Underground and more. Procrastinators.

As I was spellchecking this post, we heard from Florida. New average: .286. Well, Pete Rose and Mantle didn't hit over .300 their inaugural seasons.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Stop Making Sense!

The Blood Car World Premiere at Cinequest 17 draws ever closer. We've booked our plane tickets. All told, 12 of us will be heading westward for the opening weekend of the festival, with a handful of us hanging around for the duration of the 12 day movie extravaganza. Special guests Anna C. and my brothers, Greg and Chris, will be joining us as well.

Recently, I was able to spend some quality time with Blood Car at Lab 601 in Atlanta, GA, where we were outputting our film from a RAID(sic) drive to HDCAM tape. This tape will be used to make all the screening dubs which will screen at the various festivals we've been accepted to thus far. Here is Alex with the computer and the drive which housed 4 terabytes of uncompressed HD video.

Now, Lab 601 is primarily an AVID facility and since we cut BC on Final Cut, we encountered a few hiccups during the outputting process. The reason I was there was quality control, which I trained in when I used to work in a soap factory in Daytona Beach. I had to watch BC during the output to ensure that it went to tape according to the filmmaker's vision. No problem. Being a post house, they're pretty hip and a woman baked chocolate chip cookies while I was there. I drank Mr. Pibb from some strange, 80s era fountain machine. Walking up stairs to the machine room, they had all sorts of action figures and toys along the walls, but some fine soul slipped amongst those childish diversions an old edition of recent MacArthur Genius Grant winner George Saunders's book Civilwarland in Bad Decline, a book of short stories.

In other news, one of cinema's household names watched Blood Car and enjoyed it. He furnished us with a quote, which you can find on www.bloodcar.com. His name is Jonathan Demme and Alex, Katie and I had the privilege of working alongside him on a recent doc. He's a kind man and as far as filmmakers go, he's the real thing.

I know I mentioned this in my last post, but our BC cast and crew screening was shown in the exact same theater where Hugh B. and I saw Stop Making Sense! on 35mm.

I'm also concocting a rather detailed travel itinerary for us for the festival. Details later.