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Everything posted by SZPT

  1. The film production was a success, and Maverick and team have begun their festival run, already screening at these great film fests: Ashland Independent FF Vail FF El Dorado FF HollyShorts BendFilm FilmQuest Oaxaca FF Certainly an impressive run thus far and with more to come, but the big recent news is that they are now an official selection at the Austin Film Festival! So be looking for their next screening at a quality film festival near you!
  2. My producing partner and I had a great few years on the festival circuit with 3 of our shorts, and all of that experience made us realize that Waco, the town he calls home, was in need of a quality film festival. So with a lot of additional research, and an amazing advisory board, we premiered the Deep in the Heart Film Festival last year. The consistent comment that we got over and over from both attending filmmakers and our audience was that Deep in the Heart did not feel like a first year festival. The Texas Film Commission was also in attendance, and they said it felt like we'd already been at it for a few years. If you are considering a quality community festival that spotlights well-written films, and focuses on providing a great filmmaker experience, then check us out! We are accepting submissions through FilmFreeway.
  3. Okay, this project is likely right up the alley for most visitors to this forum. Maverick Moore, one of my friends, colleagues, and partners in crime is heading up this short film. He co-wrote the script and will be directing. Maverick is a fairly new professor in the Baylor Film and Digital Media Department, and he's also the Programming Director for my film festival: Deep in the Heart Film Festival (which I just realized I have yet to mention on this board). Please watch the teaser trailer for "My Dinner with Werner," and check out the film's campaign details on Indiegogo: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/my-dinner-with-werner-a-short-film-movie#/ Thanks all! Samuel
  4. As I mentioned in the thread for my debut festival short, Moving Day: we are still in the middle of a great festival run! Now we've finished our second short, "The Usual Silence," and have begun festival submissions. This film is based on an actual experience I had at work this past year. While I'd never wish on anyone what I witnessed, I'm grateful for the chance to explore what happened, and I look forward to sharing the experience with an audience. Since it's a short film we felt it best to keep the trailer short as well. You can watch it here.
  5. Over 2 years later and I think it's safe to say that Moving Day is having a successful festival run - especially for a debut short film! We've been accepted as an Official Selection in 27 festivals so far, and we are likely to stay on the festival circuit through the fall of 2016. We've also won numerous awards, and we've been nominees for even more! Here's the trailer.
  6. SZPT


    Now I'm curious. Would you mind sharing the specifics and what impact you feel they had? I don't know how I missed this question for over a year, Buckeye. I have almost no recollection of what I and the producer spoke about, but I just read Martin Stillion's review and most of his criticism is spot on. I do think the acting of the main character was better than Martin gave him credit for, but the lead actor certainly was burdened by the shortcomings of the writing and directing. Also, I'm self-aware enough to know that what moved me in the film was based more on my memory of Rich Mullins than the skill of the filmmakers.
  7. SZPT


    I got to see the film twice over the weekend. All in all I was happy with everything, and it certainly moved me to tears a lot during the first screening. Seeing it a second time allowed me to watch with a more critical eye, but I was still moved during the deeper moments. I was able to talk with one of the producers, and he did mention an issue or two that popped up in the process of making the film. I won't share the specifics because every film has problems to overcome, and some are only known to the filmmakers. The rest of the audience will never even know about it, and I even felt that this "problem" lent to a certain perception of the events in the film that was positive overall. Sorry, no spoilers! The acting from the lead is strong, and most of the supporting actors hold their own. There could have been another pass on the script focused on polishing the conversational dialogue, but overall the interactions rang true. Shot well and with good lighting, so the crew certainly knew what they were doing. In a pass/no pass scenario I certainly think the film works. Out of 10, I'd give it an 8. I agree with one other reviewer that this film should not be compared to Hollywood blockbusters. It may not even fit with the indie circuit. However, it is a worthy final product that holds its own. And, from what I've heard, is touching people of various beliefs on a variety of levels.
  8. I haven't been on this forum in quite a while. I guess over the past few years I've been making more films and videos than watching them. Until recently, most projects have been for competitions or contests. Of course, having a family and a full time job on top of all that keeps me busy. My latest film venture is different than everything I've done recently. It's a 20-30 minute short called "Moving Day" Here's the... Logline: When a terminal illness strikes, one couple calls it quits... and for all the right reasons. And a short synopsis: Pete and Carrie are in love, and they'll be together forever - at least everyone thinks so. But now that her illness has returned they've decided to split up. Their friends are confused. Is this a mutual separation, or is Pete kicking her out? I have to say, the cast and crew were amazing! We were all crammed into my house for over 40 hours across 3 days in August, and everyone left the shoot in an amazing spirit of camraderie. Plus the footage looks amazing! We were able to bring on an amazing local DP, and his RED Epic system. I was floored at what he was able to accomplish. Here's a couple of ungraded screengrabs, but you can check out the rest at the film's facebook page. Until we get a website off the ground, It's the best place to get all the info on the film and our progress. Right now we're working through post-production, planning to get picture lock, audio, and some color correction done in time to submit to SXSW 2014. And if you're interested, we are finishing up a crowdfunding campaign at Seed & Spark to help my producing partner and I recoup some of the money we spent to make the film. I'll do my best to post updates, but again most will go through the "Moving Day" Facebook page.
  9. I haven't posted to the forums for a while, so I'm sure there are a lot of you who don't remember me and even more who don't even know me. Lately I've been quite busy working successfully in freelance production and post, and I've begun entering some film contests with some of my production friends. I could use your help with one of these contests. We're finalists, but this final stage is all about the votes. I'm not asking you to automatically vote for us, but if you enjoy our entry then please do so EVERY day until November 14th. I'm aiming for top prize so that the cast and crew can get paid, and so we can continue building our production company. Here's the link to the Facebook page for the contest: https://www.facebook.com/WatchDotTV?sk=app_258014194232902 Our entry is called "The Right Address." Again, please vote for it EVERY day if you like it, and please share with all of your Facebook friends. Let's go viral!
  10. If you're interested, here's the final product our crew submitted for the Austin 48 Hour Film Project: "Through the Fire" We got an Honorable Mention in the Audience Award category. So that was nice.
  11. And, we just completed another 48 Hour Film Project, this time for the city of Austin. The elements for all teams were: Character: Vincent or Vanessa Lowe, potter Prop: a balloon Line of dialogue: "Why does everyone always say that?" Our crew pulled the genre: Drama We should be uploading the film in a few days to both YouTube and Vimeo. I'll posts links when that is done. On this one I was only a co-writer and the editor. Also a producer, but that's a given on these things. My co-producer wanted to direct this time so I handed over the reigns to him. I am super proud of the script. My friend who also directed wrote the first pass, and I came in after to beef up some characters and suggest a different ending, which he liked and we shot. We had a very different set of challenges thrown at us this go round, many of which were unconnected, others inter-tangled, and none of which do I want to give details on. Suffice it to say that I think they all affected the final product. Still, I am happy with it -- especially when you realize that it was all done again in 48 hours. That being said, I never want to do another timed competition again.
  12. Thanks for the comments. I helped write it, and I was both the director and the editor. A lot of pressure on the directing side after only 3 hours of sleep the first night, and on the editing side after just 5 hours of sleep the second night. Yes, in a timed event it basically boils down to making the best decision at the time and then sticking to it. The cleavage line was said as a joke Friday night when we were laying out the beats of the script, and it made us all laugh. So we decided to write it in. Since it was a lighthearted piece we didn't feel like we had to give the male lead character too much motivation to help the girl, but that certainly put him over the top (pardon the pun). We got a huge laugh at that point during the screening. I'm sure it may have struck others differently as you expressed, so thanks for the comment.
  13. I forgot that I had posted to the forum. Here's our short, "The IT Kid" It's a fun little piece. We won the Audience Award, so not half bad for our first venture into a timed competition.
  14. Well, the 2010 48 Hour Film Project tour kicked off in Dallas this weekend, and I led a team into the fiery lake of competition. A bit of background: the 48 Hour contest is exactly how it sounds: make a movie in 48 hours. Dallas had 45 teams this year split up into 3 groups of 15. Every single team is given the same 3 elements that must be incorporated into their 4-7 minute long film. The Dallas elements were: Character: Chris or Christina Miliaris, Professor Prop: a bottle of wine Line of Dialogue: "I've never tried it, but I hear it's great." Then each team in a group reaches into a hat and picks out a slip of paper with their own special genre. We chose "Musical or Western" -- enter appropriate explicative [here]. But it all worked out in the end, and we were very happy with the final product. The premiere is this Saturday, and I will post our short online soon afterward. If you have a chance in your own area to do this, then I highly recommend it. Even with all of the stress and frenzy you can still kick out a decent movie under such high-pressure circumstances. Is there anyone else considering competing this year, or who has been involved in years past?
  15. I finally had a chance to watch the final product. it sucked. Don't watch it. I feel sorry for Tom Wilkinson. I guess if good actors could discern which script would make a bad movie and which one would be a hit then there'd be a lot less junk heading into distribution. I definitely blame the writer/director. Overall this movie lacked a compelling storyline or decent, believable dialogue. But I also blame whoever was in charge of the edit, whether that be the editor himself or whoever dictated where to cut. The pacing was terrible and really diminished the flow of the story. I guess you can't pick what you work on, but you do the best with your part in it.
  16. SZPT


    I remember how the show's creators originally wanted the seemingly responsible doctor character (who was stereotypical leadership material) to die right in the pilot episode, but the network nixed that (see 5th item here). I think the creators originally wanted to focus on the fugitive and the con man (and, I imagine, their transformation on the island towards the good). My guess has always been that since they could not get their original wish they then began "killing" the doctor character by degrees, via the doctor's character. I think Sawyer's line in the last episode about Jack's "reacting" and the deaths it caused speaks to that.
  17. Thanks all for the suggestions thus far. I am looking for something that is easily accessible to the general masses so any Hollywood type movie, like what Spoon is suggesting, would be more in the direction I would want to go. Also, if you know the specific scene that captures the needed theme, please detail that in your suggestion. As much as I'd love to show an entire movie on Sunday morning, I doubt the speaker would prefer it. Thanks again, keep 'em coming. I'm waiting for just that perfect fit.
  18. The speaker for this coming Sunday at my church wants me to find a movie clip that covers a particular theme, and I'm just drawing a blank. I need a concise and compact movie clip (something I don't have to compile from a variety of scenes) that fits these qualifications: "where a person is in a completely foreign land and doesn't know the language and feels like a complete alien. It would be best if they felt separated and lonely because they couldn't communicate, but if they are scared this would be okay as well." He would also rather have it be serious as compared to humorous. Any suggestions?
  19. I can't believe that I'm actually jumping back into A&F, especially on such an already weighted thread, but I think that any discussion about the meanings in this or any film is best served by hearing what the screenwriters had to say. To that end I listen to the Creative Screenwriting Magazine podcast (you can, of course, subscribe to it via iTunes). The interviewer, Jeff Goldsmith, spoke recently with Jonathan Nolan about the film - at this point it is the first entry on the webpage. It is rather enlightening about the themes and issues that the filmmakers desired to convey, and their take on the various characters. It is also FULL of spoilers.
  20. Well personally, I am just too busy "doing" actual production work and post that I really don't have the time to talk about, much less type up some details for a forum. Granted much of my work heads off to television, but there is an art to it none-the-less. Plus, A&F is mostly (and originally) a forum of and for critics. I don't think many of them would fully appreciate, to quote Anton Ego, "that in the grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is more meaningful than [their] criticism designating it so." Which is probably another reason that I don't post much here anymore. A lot of pomposity over personal opinion. Too many critical Egos.
  21. SZPT


    You and me both. Sounds like there's a lot of nitpicking going on around here.
  22. SZPT


    A very satisfying season finale. Tied up many loose ends, and yet kept the story moving forward with a new overarching conflict and goal. Did anyone else see the Octagon global recruiting commercial near the end of the show? The date given for the San Diego recruitment is San Diego Comic-Con. Hmmm... what news will be revealed?
  23. My theory is this: With Ryan heading off to jail, Jim will be again offered the position that he had initially turned down at Corporate (that lead to Ryan's promotion). He'll do this because Pam is also moving to New York to study Art. It will be like Joanie Loves Chachi 25 years later.
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