Thursday, December 29, 2005

Both feet on the floor, two hands on the wheel...

...Let the wind take your troubles away". Thanks, Jay Farrar.

Last night's screening of Drawing Blood went really well. There was a sell-out crowd, so we are now officially set up to do more great things with the Alamo - the first of which will be the Witchcraft 13 premiere in February. Working on an exact date for that right now. I may also have more exciting news along those lines, but I want to wait for it to fully coalesce before I say anything.

The coming year is chock full of planned appearances at horror conventions, comic conventions, and film festivals, so the OnePass account will definitely be in good shape.

Got my next two (possibly three) projects lining up, so it looks like I'll be having a busy (and horror-filled) 2006. Maybe I'll actually be where I planned/wanted to be when I hit 30. That's fairly satisfying.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Giving Birth To A Stone

How fitting that I should complete the first version final draft (oxymoron?) of WC13 on my 29th birthday (which was yesterday). Side note: I share the birthday with John Amos, and Gaspar Noe, which is cool. Anyway, I got the movie in viewable form, and FedExed it out to the producers this morning to get final approval. Meanwhile a few of the cast and crew got together last night to view the movie for the first time together. It went well enough, and I noticed some things that still need tweaking (sound FX and color timing, mainly), so I'll be doing that during this next week to try and get the movie in releaseable form (or at least, a releaseable form that I'm happy with).

Tonight is the screening of Drawing Blood at the Alamo Drafthouse in Houston - hopefully things will also go smoothly with that as well. We are showing a Necrophobia trailer beforehand, and possibly even a Witchcraft 13 teaser trailer. Looking forward to it.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Perfect Pitch Black

Whirlwind last few days - saw King Kong on Tuesday night (it rocked), saw Cave In on Friday (they rocked), and then from Wednesday through Friday I also completed the rough assembly edit of Witchcraft 13. Final running time: 1hr, 33 minutes without end credits. This rough cut is mainly for the purpose of scoring and audio post, which we began work on this past weekend. To do this, Mike (sound engineer) and I traveled to his uncle's house in San Antonio. Mike's uncle is Robert Ybarra (scroll down, he's the guy playing the Parker Fly guitar), who happens to be a pretty renowned musician. This guy had gold records on his wall, for Christ's sake. I knew that he'd be able to do the movie justice.

Not only did Robert do the movie justice, he took it to a whole other level. Things that I didn't think played that well, or performances that I was unhappy with - gone. Now they come across fine on times, even epic. I'm sitting there watching the scene with the music, and I'm hooked, wondering what's going to happen next....and I edited the damn thing together! And all because of killer music. Never underestimate the effect of a good score. I'm really excited to start laying in the music and audio effect pads (which I will be doing the bulk of over the holiday weekend). Russel also has to get me the final draft effects sequences and then this time next week I should have a finished cut to show the producers and writers. Needless to say, I'm excited...especially with the new dimension that the composer has added.

Small aside - San Antonio has the best Chinese buffets on the planet. I don't know why this is true, it just is.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Kong At The Gates

As I have stated repeatedly, my days are now long spent in front of my desktop editing suite. I would guess that we are about 70% done with the offline assembly edit of WC13, and then I just have to drop in and sweeten the sound effects, and add some of the digital stuff. This weekend we are scoring the movie, and then it's just little tweaks on the top here and there and some color correction/filtering just for my own Fincher-ian vanity. This is definitely an arduous process, but it does bring a sense of satisfaction when the movie fires on all cylinders.

I just recieved confirmation that we are going to have a table at the Chicago Fangoria Weekend Of Horrors in the spring, so we'll be pimping Drawing Blood and Witchcraft 13 whilst mingling with the stars (and rocking out to "First Jason", apparently). I can also bug Mick Garris about letting me direct one of the second season Masters Of Horror episodes.

Speaking of which, I just watched 'Homecoming' (the one directed by Joe Dante). Granted, the ending was pretty weak, but the other 95% of the program was killer. I've already read about people disliking the pointed and political subject matter (some even going so far as to say that this negates the "horror" label), but I thought that the conceit and excecution were fucking fabulous. Horror has been and should always be a place where you can air out humanity's dirty laundry - Romero's Dead series, Godzilla, Body Snatchers...hell, even The People Under the Stairs. If you get a chance to check out any of the Masters entries, I highly recommend this one, along with 'Incident On and Off A Mountain Road' (which prominently features a song by a friend of mine), and 'Chocolate'.

Tonight I get to get re-inspired once again by one of my main influences, Peter "Kiwi Bad Ass" Jackson. Can't wait to watch him create another watershed cinema moment with Kong.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Humble Pie

I just got checked in the worst way tonight. Will and I went over to my friend Stacy Davidson's house - Stacy is the director/editor/writer of this low-budget lensed in Houston horror movie called Necrophobia - and he's been kind enough to let me borrow some software tools for my post on Witchcraft 13.

Of course when Will and I get there, we want to see clips from Necro, so Stacy starts showing us some footage.

Which proceeds to blow us the fuck out of the water.

I'm not kidding, this guy's movie looks phenomenal, and trust me, I'm not just saying that because he's a friend. With our same camera and the Robert Rodriguez ethic (he's pretty much doing it all himself) Stacy is totally killing it with Necrophobia. It's a nicely shot, fast paced, brutal horror throwback. The movie is going to be huge when it comes out, and I recommend it to anyone just off seeing the rough edit (with some of the CG even unfinished, no less).

So yeah, it was a humbling experience of sorts. Granted, there are a lot of mitigating factors between Necro and WC13 that make them virtually uncomparable...but what Mr. Davidson has done is very impressive and gives me some great ideas for my next project...and makes me wish I had more time for THIS one, of course. But like I said, Stacy gave me some neat plug-ins that are going to definitely enhance the look of WC13. I was up until 3 AM last night playing with them and I didn't really want to stop.

So, in closing, check out the Necrophobia site if you have the time - the trailer is also going to play before the screening of Drawing Blood on the 28th of December.

Now, back to the editing suite, of course.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Lost In the Air

I'm deep in the edit of the movie right now, which explains my absence from here. I'm in front of the computer most of the time these days, but I basically edit, edit, and edit some more until my eyes cross and my fingers begin to become atrophied in the "mouse clicking" position. I've finished most of the harder scenes - which is basically anything involving sex, witchcraft fights, or both - and have passed them on to Russel, our digital FX specialist. Mike is working on sound fx/sweetening as well, and I've also been farming out some footage to Will to edit so that we make our deadline.

The official website has been updated again with a fresh new look, and the "offical" series logo...check it out if you get the time. There's also some video up there if you haven't seen it yet.

The Houston Chronicle did a piece on Lynn Michaels (Officer Gentry in WC13), and there are some quotes from me and a mention of the movie. Check it out in the archives here.

In other news - Drawing Blood is having its regional premiere at the Alamo Drafthouse in West Oaks Mall on December 28th. The screening is free, so come and check it out if you can. Go to the "calendar" section on the website for more details.

I'm getting close to making an announcement on what my next directorial project might be...I'm pretty excited about the possibilites and opportunites that have sprung up recently. Keep checking here for updates in the next week or so on that deal. All I can say now is: will be a horror movie. What else did you expect?