The Festive Season… a creative time or a curse?

Merry festives to one and all!

I hope that many of you are able to relax, share happy moments with loved ones and even create the odd original work too! I know I’ve been blessed this year, with the time and a lack of family visits to enable me to actually get my head down and work when I’ve needed to. So far I have created a new short story – THE LEG MAN -, started editing THE GIRL WITH WHITE HAIR down to a more printable length and been asked to produce a short film in LA for Black CAB Productions at some point in 2009.

But rather than get down about the family visits, when they do occur, I have also noticed a positive effect when the small talk runs out…

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Contour 1.0 – new story development software released

Contour Software box

Mariner Software, the company behind Montage and StoryMill, has released a new application Contour aimed at those wishing to develop stories into potential film blockbusters.

Developed in collaboration with Emmy Award-nominated Jeffrey Alan Schechter, “Contour 1.0 is a proven story development system that streamlines the process of turning movie ideas from first glimmer to full outline” says Mariner.

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4 simple pages… famous last words

I have finally finished the pesky 4 Page Treatment for MUTAGENE. Woohoo! I thank you, I thank you, please stop clapping!…

Actually did you just say, “about damned time!”?… Sheesh! There’s no pleasing some folks….

I have been busy and more distracted of late. I am aware that is no excuse, but I don’t much care right now.

The good news about finishing the 1st draft is that I can now rework that until I am happy, before tackling the next stage of the full rewrite.

I have found it to be a very revealing process from a structural point of view. What seemed like a nicely busy and densely plotted script (albeit with huge holes in it, due to the original incomplete rewrite snafu of 2 years ago) actually reads as a very hectic and patchy plot when set down in a short form, with too many characters and different elements going on.

Obviously there are moments in the scenes which reveal thematic details and character motivations etc, and keep it interesting, but in a short form, the script looks totally unfocused and random and ultimately doesn’t build to a huge emotional pay-off that I desire.

So now the next stage is to try two alternative versions, to see what new directions I could tweak it in, that will refine it and make it really work, like a well-oiled and original Zombie flick.

I will definitely force myself to use this technique to set my ideas down and flesh them out in future, before I ever get into the actual script writing stage. And I can recommend it to others.

CORALINE – great website, full of childish wonder

The new Neil Gaiman film CORALINE has an amazing website: http://coraline.com/.

Credit goes to The Vault of Horror for bringing it to my attention.

Amazing website design and it is very easy to lose time, searching through all the amusing fantasic elements within the different areas of the site. I love sites like this and films that celebrate the wonder of childhood; that innocence of fantasy and a desire for knowledge…. magical!

Let’s hope the film lives up to the website.

The Independent – a great movie – and a great message

The Independent DVD cover

I am selling a few films on eBay. One of them is THE INDEPENDENT (2000) by Stephen Kessler. It’s such an amazing film, and it’s funny how I stumbled across it in the bargain bin of a discount store. Before packing it away, and ready to sell, it turned out that I was curious and had to watch it again. Big mistake – think I am going to keep it. lol

In case you haven’t seen it, the film stars Jerry Stiller in the role of an ageing B-Movie producer who is looking to secure the rights to make a serial killer film, whilst the killer in question wants it to be a musical, the bankers are threatening to foreclose on his career and events are conspiring to shut down his career once and for all. (more…)