Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Amidst my blathering about The Last Son Of Krypton, I forgot to mention what amounts to the first press for Closet Space, courtesy of is a site devoted to covering projects that are either based on or inspired by the works of everyone's favorite ichthyophobe, Howard Phillips Lovecraft. To check it out, hit the site and scroll down to June 15.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Yes...once again I believe that a man can fly.

And my belief that there are writers and directors out there capable of pulling off comic book movies with depth and seriousness is also reinstated. Of course, I never once doubted you, Bryan. Yes, the mutants should have waited you out. I know that the attention deficit and mildly retarded masses will cry foul at your 2 and a half hour epic. Forgive them, for they have suckled from the teat of Michael Bay for far too long.

Of course I'm talking about Superman Returns, which was everything I wanted it to be. And the fact that the Spider Man 3 trailer kicks ass is just icing on the cake.

Monday, June 26, 2006

This weekend was jacked up.

To begin - Thursday and Friday I spent cleaning up after the FX shoots last week. Basically putting my carport, house, and equipment in order, and moving the tentacles and monster into climate-controlled storage until we need to pull them out for insert shots in a few weeks.

Thursday night I started to feel a little weird. Friday...a little worse. Then Saturday came around, and I had full-blown food poisoning (the lack of blood in my explosive diarrhea led me to believe that it was of the staph variety). Now, I am the Food Poisoning King. I've probably been hit with this stuff 15-20 times in my life (both E.Coli and Staph), and this was the absolute worst that I've ever felt because of it. I wanted to curl up and die.

Unfortunately, we had a pretty heavy shoot scheduled at Phobia on Saturday, and try though I did....there was no way in hell that I was going to make it out for that. We couldn't cancel for various reasons (actors coming in from out of town, schedules not permitting reshoots, etc.) so the show had to go on, somehow. I eventually decided to make Will my 2nd Unit Director (which is the industry term for pinch-hitter), and gave him a detailed outline of what to shoot - along with briefing Melanie and Domingo on what needed to be done and how. I somehow managed to do all this between my frequent trips to the bathroom. So I laid on the couch, delusional and feverish, while the cast and crew tried to approximate my ideas of what should be shot. I recieved a few calls throughout the day and fielded some questions and that was about the extent of my "directing" for that day.

So I view the footage after they wrap that night, and of course there's some of it that I'm unsure of...but I think that I can make it work. In hindsight, I probably should have completely rescheduled the entire day...then again maybe I'm being nitpicky. I'm just worried about continuity, visual flow, and in some cases, character beats for some of the sequences. You know...all the things that are a director's job....when he's not puking his guts out. Overall though, I think we made the utmost of a bad situation, and a few things look really cool, so it goes down as a success. I know that there seemed to be a dawning realization that my job isn't as easy as some might think. For that, I am thankful. Well, as thankful as you can be with nothing solid in your stomach. Sunday I had to get up after the intestinal hell of Saturday, and get a U-Haul and head out to Ledbetter to dismantle the set at the Farmhouse. Domingo, Oliver, Dwayne, Melanie, and Curtis (Melanie's dad) went along to help out. We (mostly they) broke down the closet hallway, replaced the fixtures and original door, and cleaned up all the trash. A lot of crap to do, but we were done pretty quickly, considering. After loading up, we took the set back down to Phobia, where we will rebuild it and shoot some more in the coming weeks. Jason (Soundwave) and Marissa showed up and helped our tired asses out with that. It was a long and arduous process, but it got done...mostly due to everyone else's hard work (since I was sapped of strength and energy, much like Superman 2).

This coming weekend we reassemble the set and build new permutations of it, then the next weekend we shoot some more. Principal photography on Closet Space should be completed by late July.

My thanks go out to everyone that helped pick up slack this weekend - be it mine or anyone else's.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Addendum to the last post: here's the link for the "Got Tentacles?" t-shirt (and baby tee, tank top, raglan, sweat, and infant creeper) if you're interested in getting one.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Well, the FX portion of the Closet Space shoot is done (with the exception of a few small pick-up shots here and there that I'll oversee), and I must say that I'm very happy with the outcome. Our FX team (Oddtopsy FX out of Tampa, Florida) killed pretty much every single gag and then some - taking the movie to a whole new level. You know it's a good sign when people are getting queasy and retching on set. I feel like I've finally reached the effects zone that I want to be working in, which is gory, practical on-set, dark, disturbing carnage. And then when you plug that into the movie framework as a, I'm pretty excited about the finished product.

Screenwriter Jason Stewart was on hand for most of the proceedings. Wisely, he kept to himself and let me work my magic. Just kidding Jason. But not really.

I'll attach a few photos from this past "FX weekend", but I can't really post up too many for the sake of the almighty spoiler.

Melanie as Nancy - about to f**k up some extra-dimensional parasite ass.

Marcus of Oddtopsy FX with Morgan as Kristen.

I was going to include a picture of Tim, but he had to split. ba DUMP bum.

Danielle as Monica, after recieving an axe to the neck.

Assistant Director Dave Gabriel, with Marcus and Derek from Oddtopsy FX, preparing the "roadmap of abomination".

Me modeling the first "official" Closet Space t-shirt, which will be available soon on the website. (Front says "Got Tentacles", back has the URL).

Don't ask me what I'm holding down around my crotch. It's a secret.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

So...once again the blog is going to devolve into a bitch rant. Don't look at me like that - I know you guys missed the vitriol. Strong language to follow, so you've been warned.

I've been very frustrated lately movie-wise....maybe even more so than on Witchcraft (probably due to the fact that Closet Space is more my "baby", whereas WC13 was the adopted kid). There are lots of things on this production that I'm unhappy with - thankfully, none of them are on the screen this time. The performances and images are still's just getting there that's the infuriating part.

I know it sounds like I'm just complaining like I did back when we were shooting Witchcraft...but I assure you that this is different, mainly due to the fact that the production of Closet Space was forged with the understanding that we wouldn't have a repeat of Witchcraft, and I'd actually have an easier time getting things done and some sort of support. I'm starting to think that I've hung myself with the rope that I've doled out.

I'm starting to see it in sexual terms, actually. You've never tried oral, so you try it. It's okay for a while, but then you realize that you don't really like the taste of someone's dick in your mouth. Similarly...hey, this anal stuff sounds interesting. Okay, that's a different sensation...strange....getting uncomfortable....yeah, I really don't like this thing in my ass one bit.

Now that I fully realize that I don't really like foreign objects in my mouth or ass, I kind of have a better idea of where to go from here. I thought that I changed things enough from the previous debacle, and I did, but I've created entirely new problems that I shouldn't have to be dealing with, along with some old issues that I didn't see in sharp enough relief until now.

Thankfully, we are in the home stretch on the movie...and as I said, it looks pretty damn good despite my unhappiness with some of the "back room" processes. Actually, the movie looks phenomenal so much so that I can't wait to start editing. that I think of it, maybe I should keep creating movies in a tense environment. It seems to bear pretty good fruit. I just have to keep from turning into Charles Whitman.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Here is a new poster design courtesy of our lighting and visual FX guy Stacy Davidson. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Speaking of Will Spanner - here's how Tim Wrobel (Spanner from WC13) looks in Closet Space.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Man, I am so fucking tired. This weekend was our swan-song shoot weekend at the farmhouse. We did a kill scene, the final scene, about half of the climactic battle scene, a few creature shots, and several gory things here and there.
Tensions ran pretty high, but we got everything that we needed to, knocking a day off of the schedule in the process. This will allow me more time to do some FX detail shots to really up the gore, grue and kill quotient. I only wish that I had more time with our esteemed FX crew - the guys are bad-ass and consistently come up with stuff that looks awesome on camera without fail.

I did get a little bummed out before this weekend's shoot, mainly because I watched The Descent last week, and some of the similarities between it and Closet Space kind of psyched me out. I'm kind of past it now, but it did make me seriously think about re-tooling the movie in a big way. Even though CS has existed in its basic form since at least 2000, people will probably still think that we're ripping off The Descent, especially since it's the golden child of horror movies right now. Nothing I can really do about that at this point, I guess. It happens all the time with me. Dot The I is pretty much exactly like Fade to Black (my first feature), and when I was prepping Walking Distance I kept getting thrown by the new-wave of zombie movies (28 Days Later, Shaun, the Dawn remake, Resident Evil), so much so that I've shelved that one indefinitely. I'm sure some out there will even say that Witchcraft 13 bites off The Omen because of the 666 birthmark. I call bullshit...Damien Thorn doesn't get nearly as much ass as Will Spanner. Anyway, here are some pics from this weekend.

Part of Laurie's death scene. She should really get that goiter checked out, don't you think?

Monica showing off her "roadmap of abomination" state.

This coming weekend we kill one character in a most interesting way, as well as shoot a bunch of FX shots to pump up some sequences. By "pump up" I mean "finish", of course.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Last night we did our overnight shoot at the rock gym. Not a smashing success, but not a total disaster either. Here are a couple of pictures, neither of which are climbing-related:

Melanie and Morgan scared sh*tless - but why? You'll have to wait for the movie, folks.

Jovan Jackson after a particularly nasty fall from a climb. Wait till you see the close-up of the fracture. Very nasty.

Here are the rest of the photos from the rock gym shoot.

This coming weekend we are back at the farmhouse for a couple more kill scenes, and the big final battle melee sequence. There should be loads of gross photos up here soon.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Here's another picture of Danielle as Monica that enables you to see the makeup a little more clearly than in the screen cap. This will be our general look for all the "mid-stage evils" in the movie.

We just finished our first heavy FX shoot. Things went pretty well, I'd say...especially as I sit here reviewing the footage. The sequence is going to be pretty f-ed up - but I'll let a few screen captures tell the tale:

Evil Monica looking pretty pissed. I wonder what she has in store for Kristen?

Whatever it is, looks like it involves tentacles. Nasty, slimy tentacles. Poor Kristen.

Yeah...looks like Kristen is in trouble.