Sony's Samuel Dickerman, New Deal Studios and Filmworks/FX

I had a hell of a birthday last month… it’s been nearly three weeks, and now I’m finally getting around to writing about it. Marvin Acuna of The Business of Show Institute (BOSI) invited myself and 9 other screenwriters down to Hollywood to sit in on a discussion with Sony V.P. Samuel Dickerman (Marvin’s BOSI[…]

hyperion: the movie?

Holy Crap. I guess this isn’t news… this project has been in the works for years, it turns out. But somehow it wasn’t on my radar. The Hyperion Cantos, one of the most amazing, brilliant, Literary works of science fiction known to mankind, is being adapted to film by Warner Brothers. Hyperion Hyperbole, you say?[…]

write club screenplay challenge

There’s a new blog in town… Write Club Screenplay Challenge is a simple little blog that sets up mini-challenges for screenwriters. It’s like one of those 48-hour filmmaker’s challenges, but you don’t have to make a whole movie. You just have to write it. The site is designed to offer motivation to get writers to[…]

scion – short film

Earlier this year I was a screener for the Santa Cruz Film Festival. I had to watch a truckload of crap… most of it was crap, frankly. Being a screener (or a screenplay reader) is a real eye opener, really… because most of it is crap. But I found a few gems, and I thought I’d get around to sharing them with you. Not all of them made it into the fest (not for lack of quality or vision, more for programming reasons) but I still think you should know about these films.

Scion_artSCION
Written and Directed by Michael Rosetti

Deep in an abandoned factory lives Scion; lonely and crippled, he hobbles along, trying to create a companion.  When a mysterious man stumbles into the factory Scion eagerly follows him and the two develop an odd relationship, ultimately changing Scion’s insulated existence forever. Creation and destruction are bound together in a story of the search for meaning and existence.

I was stunned by Scion. At only 12 minutes long, and with only a single line of dialogue, Scion is a beautiful movie with delicate performances. Shot on 35mm by Greg Mitnick, Scion’s urban grunge post-apocalyptic setting is filmed with the light and composition of a Vermeer.

In fact, my recommendation to the programming committee went something like this: […]

blair witch marketing efforts still relevant ten years later

Jessica Rovello has a good article over on HuffPo on what we’ve learned about online marketing from The Blair Witch Project, what’s still relevant, what’s changed, and where we go from here. This week marks the 10-year anniversary of the release of the Blair Witch Project, the ground-breaking, nausea-inducing, most successful indie film of all[…]

on strong women characters

strong_womanGiven the positive response to the female characters in Faeries, I’ve been giving some thought to the issue of writing strong women characters. As a man, I’m often told that it’s not possible for me to do so.

It is true that Lacey, the young girl in Rocket Summer, is probably the least complex character in the script (and that has been pointed out by some readers). But it’s also true that she is the glue for that group of dysfunctional friends… a caretaker, a realist, and a “person of interest” for a pair of boys with very fucked up home lives, one of whom lost his mother at a young age.

Unfortunately, to some, that makes her “stereotypical”… a character whose only job it is to fulfill the traditional “female” roles of mother, lover, nurturer. Me, I take exception to the word “only”. It’s important stuff. And she’s conflicted about it in the process, and seems to be setting aside some of her own desires to take on that role. For me, that’s a strong, flawed, and thus interesting female character.

Some people are never satisfied. […]

pocahauntus

A few years ago I ended up talking with Veronica Craven about her upcoming slate of horror films. We chatted about me writing a zombie flick for her but that project didn’t come together (at least not with me). She did, however, have a project going into production called “Pocahauntus” — a cheezy B horror[…]

grampa: prodco request

Yup, it’s true. We’ve already got one script being considered by a reputable production company. Now we”ve got two irons in the fire. Grampa Was A Superhero is being looked at by a production company in the Midwest… East… Southeast… Hell, I don’t know. Where’s Tennessee? Anyway, the producer has a string of recognizable titles[…]

enigma – low budget indie sci fi

FOLLOW UP: I’ve seen the movie. Here’s my review. Stumbled across this series of clips today from the low budget sci fi actioner “Enigma” from The Shumway Brothers* and Frontier Studios. Love to see this kind of ambitious filmmaking in the indie sci fi genre… the technology is so accessible and affordable now that films[…]

ucla film video interview series on youtube

Very cool series of vids on YouTube from UCLA’s film school. Interviews with producers, directors, agents on how to pitch, what you get out of film school, and more… all good stuff, and always great to get it form the horse’s mouth. Here’s their YOUTUBE CHANNEL.

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