Filmmaking

“Friends will help you get your movie made”. Don’t make me fucking laugh. They’re the worst. Keep them the hell away from your movie.

Not-sure-if-dvz8nf So you’re going to make a movie. That’s great. You’re a really brave person. I realize now just how much courage I had to do what I do despite the mountains of opposition. That opposition of course being… ya know, everyone and everything. But this article isn’t exactly about “The Struggle” it’s about relationships. I’m sure if you’re alive, you have friends. Or if you’re here on the internet reading my musings about absolutely nothing and you have you damn friends.

Anyway, when I started making movies, I was told to not pay people right away, but to find friends willing to help. Being broke as hell I didn’t really have much of a choice. I managed to find people who would help and it was great. We got things filmed and it was actually rather simplistic. With the next movie, “Pump it Up: The Warrior’s Path”, we really upped the stakes… despite the issues that turned up… it was actually pretty good. HOWEVER, friends jumped on the project and seemed to support at first. But then when the actual work came around, they were sudden hard to contact… or would just flat out lie about going to shoots and leaving me high, dry, and looking like a fucking idiot. But a good directer/producer knows how to work around it. Always plan for the worst. That brings me to the current move I’ve been working on, “Everything Else: The Warrior’s Path. I’ve really leaned on those friends for support once more. But again, the lies all over the place. It’s crazy. We were supposed to film at once place on the 10th of May. It’s Ryzen’s house. We’ve been there in the past couple of movies. However, flaked on me at the very last second. Or the guy who was SUPPOSED to play Langer, has lied to me twice and is most likely going to get punched in the face by me really soon.

So remember, your friends most likely lack the passion, heart, and honor to make films. Or even to actually be real friends at all. Always remember to question everything in your friendships. You want good people on your movie? Pay them. Until then, get ready to deal with your shitty friends. I know now that mine have no heart. It sucks.

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Story time: Why in the heck are you making a third movie anyway Joe?

 

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I think everyone has a moment in their life at a (somewhat young age when they have a good talk or something like that which really gets them towards what they want to and really should be doing.

 

Let’s talk about Barrett again. Yes, the one with that hat. Still love that hat. Money well spent. But he’s going to appear in the last of the series of movies we’ve been working on the past three years.

Those of you who have been following me know that I was actually filming some of this a year ago, when Barrett unfortunately passed on. I was left with the hard choice. Do I recast or do I rewrite? After talking to Alex and John about the issue, we decided to go ahead and write the character out. He was originally going to to be the main villain of this final film. But of course that couldn’t happen without him. And we came to the conclusion you just can’t replace a guy a like Barrett. It just wouldn’t have the same feel.

But let me tell you how we got there.

You may know about the problems we had filming Pump it Up: The Warrior’s Path. If you don’t, just read back a few posts and I’m sure I’ve discussed it at length and don’t want to get into that mess again. That’s like 5 pages worth of stuff. Tell em’ Sweet Brown.

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Anyway, after Pump it UP: TWP was all said and done, to say I was a little unhappy was quite an understatement. I actually felt like quitting this business all together, and who could actually blame me for that? I’m not really a guy who projects his problems and begs for sympathy. But Barrett gave me a call, he wanted to hang out. So we did just that. During which we were just shooting the same old shit we always had. But he brought up the movie, and was well aware of the goings on. And he told me something that I’ll never forget.
“You really shouldn’t beat yourself up because other people want to be stupid or assume you are. You’re going to be a pretty big deal those people will wish they never messed with you. Let’s just go out there and do it again. Make it bigger and better than before.”

He ended up writing a great deal of the story we’re filming right now. Lot’s of hilarious twists on his character that I really wish we could film.

We continued to talk and I have to say, I haven’t enjoyed a conversation more. We were both really similar, full of ideas. I guess we were just a couple of eccentrics. They’re always hard to understand but always have the coolest and have the best ideas. But again, eccentricity is another topic I should just cover another day.

This entire moment now is crucial. Why?

He was the only person to actually approach me and tell me he had my back. I can’t begin to tell you how good that made me feel then. Gave me the motivation I have now to not give up. It’s really not in my nature anyway. Barrett would have never wanted me to give up so I’m not going to. That, and people said I couldn’t. Which means I really can’t quit. If there’s anything Barrett taught is me is that people can surprise you. Think the best of them that you can and you’ll see their very best. I really don’t think that’s hard but whatever, I deal with humans.

See you all when  we finally get this released in the summer. It’s going to be great.

The Journey Some Of Us Go On.

It really took me a while to truly understand it. But I’m feeling much better since. It’s about who exactly I am… not just as a filmmaker, but as person as well. And that’s simply the fact that I’m not a popular guy. I may be nice and funny and all that good stuff. But I’ll never be popular. But this really isn’t a bad thing at all. It only leaves you free to be the person you’re meant to be.

I look around at other people in the business. A great number of them are “friends” with one another. I’m really not. But it’s just as well. Even the ones I do know and work with frequently, will never mention my name or admit that they know me. Yeah, that kinda hurts and it’s really not honest. But you can’t let it change who you are and how you treat those people. Sure it would be nice if those people would speak up for you and have your back every now and again. But not everyone does the right thing. Some people would rather see you fail for whatever reason.

I’d rather have two or three friends give me a high five or a hug or something instead of some online cheering section of suck ups who stare down at people they find “unworthy”. I think that’s a good way to view things. I know that’s not how it is, but maybe I can set a good example for those younger than myself starting up in the business. Be there… and be there for people, for real.

 

My parents really didn’t approve of what I wanted to do. Okay, maybe I’m being too nice about it. They said I would fail, and laughed at me. As did most of the people I know (those idiots still do that.) Mostly because there’s not boatloads of guaranteed money in it right away. But with some hard work and a couple of friends… I’m still broke as hell. But I’m happy and I’m doing things no one has ever done. Folks like us have ambition, and for some reason, others tend to hate that for one reason or another. But just remember that you’ve got something that no one else can have.

 

It’s hard, and it hurts, a lot. But you’ll come out of it better and ready to improve. Just stay the course and keep working hard. Someone has to.

Why Indie Filmmaking is Just High School All Over Again

It’s just me, doing that dangerous “Thinking” thing again as I struggle with my own self to make it from movie to movie without going completely crazy. It’s a tough thing sometimes and I try to rationalize it into something I’m familiar with.

And it came to me.

High School. And I’ll give you two reasons why

HighSchoolMusical

 

Okay, but there’s fewer catchy tunes and we all can’t be as photogenic as ol Zac.

 

1. Money

-In high school, you had two types of people. Those of us who are broke. And those that are rich and have things just given to them. I , despite rich parents was a victim of tickle down economics. So I was poor and had to work for everything that I got. But you had the rich kids that would go to fucking McDonalds for lunch every day. I was fucking jelly with my PB&J. But Goddammit it was the best fucking PB&J on wheat bread and I was still fed in the end.

-Same goes for making movies. You have people like me, who are trying to make really cool shit out of nothing. It’s quite a feat to even get a movie off the ground when you got no money. Money talks. Then you have those white suburban people with the parents that love and support their career choice to go into filmmaking. Again, I envy those people. But I know my hard work is truly going to pay off someday so it’s okay. It only helps me appreciate things more when I do get them and puts more weight on surrounding myself with good people. Which again, is good for the long run.

2. Cliques

– Damn, I never thought I’d have to use that term again. But we all remember those groups that tended to hang out together. Usually during lunch. Then you had people like me who were sort of an outcast, but had your other outcasty friends and you all formed your little outcast group out of pure survival. All the while, you had the popular kids who had big tables full of friends simply because they were “The Guy”

-Same thing happens in indie film world. Literally. You have groups of actors and stuff that stick together. This is all good and healthy. Just like high school. However, you do see a ton of worship somethings and it just makes you sit back and just watch in disbelief. If this person wasn’t doing all these things, would you even talk to them if you saw them on the street somewhere? The answer is always no. These groups, like in high school will single people out and basically tell them to fuck up. Even if they don’t even really no the person at all and that’s just fucked up. That’s part of the reason why I’m reluctant to go to these artists meetings. No one is leveling up. Everyone is just stroking their cocks and showing fucking suicide movies. Everyone thinks they’re being artsy but they’re really just forgetting they’re in the fucking entertainment industry. Entertain and/or move people or get the fuck out of the way and let someone else do it who truly wants that shit. It’s a hard world out there and we need to stick together.

 

That’s all I really have to say on the matter. I just have to work a little bit harder.