AOC Series Demo 2

I completed the second demo for Another One Comes last night.

I’m thrilled with how well it cut together. We shot the cameos after we shot the rest of the scene, and I was worried the light wouldn’t match, because the sun was moving over the course of several hours.

Mostly I’m just please with how quickly we turned it around. Three hours to write a script, rewrite, and write some more. A few more hours of logistics. Two hours of rehearsal and five hours of production. I cut it together in half a day.

Making these shorts really have proved to be one of the most satisfying experiences of my whole career.

Gotta find a way to leverage this into funding.

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An Interesting Development

All you gotta do to make a show happen, is book a theatre.

It’s an idea I copped from Ken Davenport, that continues to resonate in my daily life. I had this idea to shoot an episode of Another One Comes during the CFL Combine on March 22, as a way of getting more eyeballs on my series demo. CFL fans are very passionate, and any new thing with a CFL theme, especially at this time of year, will attract a lot of attention.

Thing is, there are a lot of rights to clear, and logistics to cover, and people to talk to, and mountains to move, that are way beyond my control. This great idea I had two weeks ago, seemed a bit of a hill to climb as the Combine drew near. I was all ready to resign myself to the improbability of it.

I made some phone calls last week and got nowhere. Not many got back to me, and those who did, didn’t seem enthusiastic. Shockingly, football people are more concerned with football matters, at this once-a-year football event.

Before completely throwing in the towel on Monday, I owed it to my peace of mind to make one final phone call to the CFL head office. I left a message and then got on with my life.

Twenty minutes later, the CFL’s Director of Communications and Broadcast was returning my call. I told him what I had in mind – that instead of guaranteeing access to certain individuals, could I simply show up with my actors and NOT be kicked out?

[pause for dramatic effect]

It now seems I am in a mad rush to shoot an episode of my web series on Saturday. I have been granted official access to the event, and I have a script.

Outstanding! All I needed was actors. And a boom mic. And a 24-105mm lens. And a plan.

The plan is evolving. The lens remains outstanding. Same with the boom. I have two of my three actors in place, and I’m content to cast someone from the event to play my third role. Guerrilla Filmmaking at its finest.

I’m racing madly towards a finish, and I have no clear idea how the whole thing will transpire.

Makes it kind of interesting, doesn’t it?

The Banana Solution

Jazz and I had ‘the talk’ on Saturday.

Something had to be done about all those bananas on the counter. They just kept sitting there, and then turning brown.

I suppose we could have eaten them, but they were just a little bit too brown for my liking. I might put one in my mouth and not like the taste – or worse, wind up with one of those mushy squish spots that bananas are prone to be known for.

If I waited one more day, the bananas would certainly be too brown to eat, and then my decision to NOT eat them, would be much simpler to make.

Something about this theory rang nonsensical however. Couldn’t put my finger on it, so I sat Jazz down for a discussion.

In the past, she had shown an interest in combining ingredients together into a pan, and then baking ’em up in the oven. The resulting product was always something delicious we could cut up an put in our mouths – and then swallow.

To this end, she sent me out to the grocery store to buy nuts, brown sugar, and flour. Mere hours later, she made the brown bananas disappear, and produced something rather loafy and bananaish tasting.

I clearly am excelling at this whole fatherhood thing.

$6.95 Worth of Musing

I’m recording my current contemplation upon a sunny disposition under the influence of a collision of random circumstance, three pints of Guinness, and a general good feeling about my address in the way of things that’ve all come and gone and come again so soon.

Spring is busting out from beneath a pack of snow, Jazzy and I are headed off to the Red Lounge for a father/daughter date, and I am feeling praise for the work I’m doing for clients, and self, and futures yet unknown.

I love the city I live in. Finally starting to feel like I actually belong here, and sortaly starting to glimpse at a future that seems brightly mighty in scope. There remains yet a phone to start working, and a shoot to start triggering, and a logistic that has yet to be sewn.

No big whoop at this moment in time. Happy vibrations of memories and revelries, and general strong sense of esteems of myself being all smiley with myself in the mirror.

The headspace, it ebbs and flows, and goes off in all powerful directions. Been a long time since I expressed myself this way, but always it lives, just beyond access, where more pressing matters materialize.

It’s a phase I’ll enjoy for a spell. A spell I’ll wander by. A passing to take on this journey I make, between broken thoughts and happy places more frequently travelled.

Life is for living, and too often we’re living for some other time, in some other place, in some space where we all go for a routine to make up of our selves. It’s not like I don’t live there, all along with the rest of you poor bastards – I’m just taking my leave for an few days or two.

In twelve minutes I’ll be walking out the front door of this cozy Irish pub, three blocks from home. My pint will be empty and my heart will be full. Three selections of seafood baked and rolled and sorted to make our fast full.

(the later cost $6.95 at Loblaw’s).

Fast Times to Cult Status

Jazzy decided to join me in my annual fast. No meat or dairy for 40 days. So far so good. It’s been three days and only feels like a week!

We’ve been eating a lot of waffles.

My week has been dominated by my effort to promote Another One Comes. I’ve been working Facebook, Twitter, and my phone, to reach out to people and get them to watch the video. In the midst of all this, I was struck with the idea of shooting another video – one with a CFL theme – to use as a tool to promote the series.

The Roughrider brand attained cult status at an event last week (along with Red Bull, GoPro, and four others). Gotta be a way to parlay some of that cult status into my series.

It’s not just about cult status mind you. I wrote the pilot to a TV series set in the CFL four years ago, and by reviving two of those characters and giving them life in this new undertaking, I feel like I’m breathing new life into them. More than repurposing these characters, I’m actually going to see them on the screen in a few weeks.

There do remain some complicated logistics to figure out. We shoot March 22 and only two of the six roles are cast. There are rights to clear and locations to secure. And the clock is ticking.

I’ve had a meeting with the Toronto Argonauts, and exchanged emails and phone calls with the CFL and Saskatchewan Roughriders. I don’t know when my answers will come, but as I prepare for this shoot, I have to keep a few contingencies up my sleeve.

In the meantime, the first four episodes are going to be read at the Toronto Cold Read Series tomorrow. I won the ‘Writer’s Challenge’ last week – they pulled my name out of a hat, gave me three artifacts, and told me to come back with a play.

Instead of a play, I wrote two new episodes for the web series – including the one I’ll be shooting in two weeks. It’ll be a great way to hear the work before it goes to camera. It’s also incredibly satisfying to share the work with that community. They all seem to be fans.

When my thoughts are tied up with AOC (Another One Comes), I have managed to involve myself in other endeavours. I had a meeting this week with CBC. I finished a rewrite on the first two acts of Room 31. I landed a producing gig for a TV commercial, and I also was hired by Kunle to shoot a three-minute documentary.

I’m going to spend the morning working on Act three before seeing what else the day has to offer. Lots going on.

Keeps my mind off my stomach.

Surprise!

I seem to have stumbled into a major undertaking.

This web series started as a simple way to create demo reel material for myself and a handful of actors. I wrote a couple of short scripts, took some meetings, learned about the IPF’s Web Drama Series Program, learned the deadline to apply was today, shot a short for the first time in my career so that I would be eligible to apply…

And then in writing the application for the fund, I began to see how much potential the whole thing had – not just as a compelling drama series – but as a way to bring a lot of people together. I have invited a number of established film creatures to participate in the series, should we get the funding. They all said yes.

My goal is to line up 18 directors, 18 DPs, 18 production designers, 18 editors, and 36 musicians/bands, to go with my 12+ cast, to produce 36 three-minute episodes. Each episode wouldn’t require more than 5 hours to shoot, so between prep and post, it wouldn’t be a commitment that would keep them from their full time gigs. Ideally, it will be a great, informal, fun way for them to work with other established filmmakers, on a guerrilla filmmaking set – a throwback to the nostalgia of film school. It will be a community of filmmakers! What an incredible way to build up a network of industry connections!

Speaking of industry connections, I’m off to the Canadian Screen Awards Nominees reception tonight. I was invited because I was a juror for one of the categories. This means I’m going to have to buy pants – possibly even iron a shirt. I’m hoping I can rock the ‘shaggy artist’ look, rather than appear like a rumbled schmoe.

One last thing… Here’s a link to the series demo. Please watch it. Please share it on Facebook and Twitter. Please comment on it.

We’re being evaluated on how much traffic we can generate over the next 30 days. Eyeballs equals funding.