Thursday, December 29, 2005

Prison Break

The gap between Christmas and New Year is like the void between Hot and Cold on the crap shower you last used when you stayed at somebody's house as a guest.

The beginning of December was testimony to how much I can acheive when disciplined and concentrated effort is applied in the correct direction. Yet now my days spent munching on brie and camembert biscuits in between playing Final Fantasy X and watching HBO's Rome and The Wire on my Apple Powerbook.

Simple statements of fact are as follow:

1. My choice of career and ambition exists in a very competitive field.

2. I have a great deal to learn before I can ever describe myself as skilled/talented.

It is quite clear to me that in order to achieve the seemingly impossible I must re-double my efforts again and treat this like a military exercise - or better yet, treat this like a prison break.

Here comes the magic.

The first obligation of a prisoner is to escape. If I was ever to find myself inside a prison with the need to escape I would have to come up with a serious plan and then be very disciplined in my approach. That is my benchmark of how much effort needs to be applied.

Effectively, I AM in a prison. I have somewhere I want to be, and it is not yet where I am. So, as 2006 approaches I need to be Napoleonic in my planning and approach. I need to utilise the resources available apply them in such a way that can acheive my objectives.

Over the coming days on my wall a master plan will be drawn out. And I will use this plan to focus my actions. There will be objectives and sub-objectives which will be constantly updated and refined- but overall there will be a target. And I've got not choice but to achieve this target.

Why? Because I choose to. And that has ALWAYS been the vital ingredient in everything I have ever accomplished.

Take it easy


Saturday, December 24, 2005

Okay then...

There comes a time when even the Lord of Doom must take off his hat of doom and give in to the urge to sing jolly carols.

That time has come, and tomorrow I am cooking Christmas dinner for my family (with my twin sister's help, of course). I am going to send away my army of flying monkees to assist the elves in delivering presents to the world's children even though
technically Christmas isn't as relevant to me anymore since I have changed my religion. But I still enjoy it and I will always indulge myself.

But enough about me.

For you my dear readers I wish you a happy jolly holly Christmas whatever your beliefs/values/opinions are. Regardless of your haircut/your body odour/your sexual persuasion I will not discriminate.

Please, relax, enjoy yourself and I take peace and goodwill with you wherever you go. Remember, no matter how bad it gets, there is ALWAYS some poor bugger who has it worse - so just try and see things with some perspective.

Much Love always



Friday, December 23, 2005

Wisdom from odd places...

Here I am, finally, with some time to sit around and do nothing. Eat, drink and play Final Fantasy X.

And the uncertainty began to creep in.

I never made this short film to 'learn' but the amount of things I learned were unbelievable. One of the things I learned is that there are many things that I do not know. And I find myself wondering... WHAT IS IT EXACTLY THAT MAKES A GOOD DIRECTOR?

And then what, exactly, is it that I can do that makes me a good director or not.

I find myself remembering my student days when film making was complete insanity and I did EXACTLY what I wanted to do. I made a lot of friends and enemies by doing what I wanted and not what anybody else wanted. But in the end I was victorious because of my foolish resolve.

But in the real world, movie making cannot be as 'renegade'... or can it?

What the fuck qualifies me to do what it is that I want to do? I want to direct movies/music videos/commercials... fucking corporate videos if I have to....anything. But I want to direct. It is my dream, my ambition.

Maybe my 'talent' is largely irrelevant... whether I CAN do it or not is not important... rather... whether I DO do it is more important. In fact, not just important, but vital to success.

Yesterday as I played Final Fantasy, there was a quote in the game, one of the playable characters said something that ultimately answered my question and explains what I am trying to say.

Kimahri: "Only those who try will become."

And there you have it. Wisdom in computer games.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Final Fantasy X

Hey - I've been busy doing random stuff... mainly stripping the wallpaper in the house we were filming in... I went up north to stay with my beautiful girlfriend's mum for a couple of days.

I got an email and it seemed that I *might* have been shooting another low budget music video in the beginning of January. If that happened then that would have been awesome... but it turned out that it was not meant to be this time.

A real pain, cos I am eager to shoot something as soon as possible but the link may lead places in a few months time.

ANYWAY for now, I am quite happy to sit indoors and play Final Fantasy X on the Playstation 2. I haven't played Final Fantasy in AGES and I think I deserve a little treat... this is my little reward over Christmas.

Peace and Love



Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Firat things first - for those of you interested - The shoot is complete.


Yesterday at around 2:00pm I found myself wandering along the high street all on my own. The shoot was over and I was making my way home. I will never get used to the sudden feeling of emptiness and lonliness that comes when a shoot in finished. For 2 weeks solid I have been working on making this production come together. And the egomaniac in me has loved the attention that it creates.

For the last 5 days, I have been a movie director - I have been doing my job and following my heart. It might have been a short film, but essentially on a day to day basis it was not that different to a feature film. I say this because the set-up we had going was very, very professional. Many 'civilians' who have come to my shoots have always and suddenly been very taken back by the level of professionalism and production values that we have going on. I owe this to the producer who I have been working with for the last few years.

Anyway, yesterday evening when I did my round of phone call to thank the crew for their help and assistance I made sure I mentioned to them a specific thing that I had noticed them accomplish. And in doing so, it made me too appeciate the level of professionalism involved by each and every one of them. It was a freebie short movie that everybody involved with did for nothing. All we paid them for was their expenses. But from the crew, I witnessed so much effort, passion and skill.

Why did the crew all work for nothing?

Well, they all have their reasons, which I shall not bother to speculate about here - but it is a humbling experience being surrounded by such talent and skill. Furthermore, it is humbling because it all happened because a while ago I made a decision for it to happen. The spark of an idea that I had when I wanted to make another short film I had to nuture and build until it created an organic force strong enough to manifest itself.

This process is as mysterious and it is exciting as it is empowering. And I love it. I love it like nothing else I can do on this earth. Immediately after the shoot I film myself craving this fix again. When My girlfriend came along to the set she said she saw me in a state that she had never seen me in before. In her words, I was 'glowing' and she said she saw me in my 'element'. These kind words from her are also uplifting and empowered.

So here I am, craving the fix like some kind of Crack Head Madman... So I have no choice... I NEED to find more projects to direct... so if you have a music videos you want somebody to shoot, or an advert, short movie, or a feature film then drop me a line... Because I am a mother fucking addict and I need to jack myself up.

Love, peace and kisses,



Sunday, December 11, 2005

My readers.

Thank you for your comments, Bethanie Odd and Ruksak.

Ruksak -- many thanks for your comment - hard to live up to the faith you have in me - we got through the day - but it was tough.... At times today I remembered your comment (i checked my blog this morning) and I was desperate to make sure I lived up to you and the rest of my readers expectations.... this blog is a beautiful thing.

Bethanie - many many thanks again - I am living my dream - I have a long way to go.... but I am trying my best.

Hard Core Pressure

Yesterday was a slow day and we had to drop a couple of scenes as well as re-write a couple of other scenes and blend them together.

Today, now is the second day (tomorrow is a half day for the montage shots we need to shoot) and we have fucking loads of stuff to shoot. Our backs are to the wall from the first minute of shooting. The film gets effectively completed today or it does not get completed.

I lay in bed this morning and for a moment I could not remember who I was or what I was doing - I simply existed in a dreamless and timeless state.

Then pow.

I remembered.

And after 10 minutes of anxiety and stressing about how I was gonna shoot today's footage I got out of bed with one thing in my mind that superceeded all the worry and anxiety.


And that is what I need to do.

sorry - I have to go now.


Friday, December 09, 2005

12 hours to shooting

A long day done. The location is looking fantabulous.

No matter what happens - In less that 12 hours we will be shooting.

We have missing about 2 core crew members - a gaffer and a spark. That means our core lighting department is virtually zero.

WITH LUCK - We have a 3 man camera team who will have to become a camera/lighting team - these guys will have no choice but to do both between themselves, but they won't want to.

WITH BAD LUCK - We have a 2 man camera/lighting team. Then we are fucked.

Presently the DOP is on a job and unavailable to speak to in order to confirm the 3rd man.

Also, the budget is coming out of my own pocket - and we look like we're gonna go 30% over budget. Not a crisis - but just the way things go. I've got too much invested to fuck the project up because of a few hundred pounds....

(am I MAD?)

I am now unemployed - a few hundred pounds is a LOT of money.

Fuck it.

Tomorrow will be magic. I've known this moment wil come for a long time....but lookign past the next 3 days - the moment that right now I cannot see but I know is coming will be MONDAY NIGHT - when this shoot will be over. A lot of stress and a lot of bother right now, but all that will turn into relief and bliss. The page is blank right now, but by then, the page will be full colour... I am looking forwards to seeing what we come up with.

peace and love


ps. I just hope we don't fuck it up.


i am on set now. things can not be stopped now if I wanted to.

i am amazed. so many people. so much passion. So much skill.

i am humbled.

we still have stuff to do... but we're on it.

i love you all


Thursday, December 08, 2005


Fuck me.

I have just finished the storyboard and now I need to put together the shotlist.

Today I was at the location with the art department and it was a busy fucking day.

I wish I could post more but I don;t have the time or the energy.

But what I can say is that on Monday this will all be over.

Between now and then I have a lot of work to do. But I won't be on my own.

I have a good art director and costume lady, with her are three art department assistants, make up artists, three actors, 1 lighting cameraman, 1 camera assistant, 1 production manager, a first assistant director, a producer, a script continuity supervisor, a gaffer, probably 2 sparks, a sound recordist, 2 catering people, a runner .....and God in heaven.

And then afterwards I'm gonna have to edit this mother fucker.

This is a machine that I could not stop if I wanted.

And all I need to do is hold my shit together until Monday.




And I fucking love it.


Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Round II


Now it's getting a little more interesting - we are scheduled for a 3 day shoot. But equipment wise we are being pressured into shooting for 2 days.

That will fuck us.

So we need to find a way to shoot it in 3 days.

It is the 35mm adaptor that is causing mayhem.

Maybe we will have to shoot on another format...


Tuesday, December 06, 2005


Today I had a location recce with the Director of Photography. And today came my first round of comprimises - not a great deal of them but I had to forfeit two camera shots which were integral to a drug montage in this short movie.

It is a shame, but to do the shots we will need to spend money on equipment which we don't have to spend. I say 'we' in the production sense. But the money is coming from my pocket. So actually I cannot afford it.

Anyway, I need to re-storyboard that sequence with something that DOES work.

Surprisingly enough I was presented with a choice that I wasn't even aware I was able to have. And that is the screen ratio.


1:85.1 (Widescreen)

or even

2:35.1 ( w i d e s c r e e n)

We are shooting on a Sony HD Camera - the Z1. And we are using 35mm lenses. When Sony Designed the Z1 they never even considered being able to put 35mm lenses on the front of it - but some clever bod has figured out a way to do this.

So go figure.

Anyway, I have more storyboards to do.


Monday, December 05, 2005

Short Film Update

Sorry about my lack of posts - I've been somewhat busy with the prep for this short movie.

I've been working with a marvellous Art Director who is also doubling up as the Costume Designer. Today she was at the house doing some basic fittings with the two actresses whilst we were doing rehearsals.

The rehearsals went well - I think we all have a better idea of where this project is going and how they are gonna play the parts. There are three characters in this short film, two girls and one guy. It has been my plan to keep the two girls apart from the guy who is playing the villian. This will kind of help keep things a little fresher when we come to the shoot. And there is a slight surprise in the way that I'm gonna have the villian play the part which I'm gonna keep from the girls until the camera is rolling.

This evening I have been storyboarding and I've done a hell of a lot more work than I managed yesterday. It is a very time consuming activity and one I think that needs to be done very, very carefully.

Anyway, I'm gonna leave you with a gem of wisdom:

Movie making is like a crazy form of paint by numbers. Except nobody tells you what colour each number is. You can try and match it as best as you can, but each element brings it's own colour that slowly fills in the gaps in the canvas to complete the picture bit by bit. It is an amazing process seeing the blanks get filled in. But you have to roll with the punches. No director can have all the answers. It is best to make the big decisions and not get bogged down in unneccessary details. But then again, sometimes the genius is in the small details.

Fo figure.

Tomorrow I have to go to the job centre for my first appointment. I am scheduled for a 9:00am something. Fucked if I know what it is, as they have not sent me any details. But I'm certain if I don't go, then I won't get any mother fucking money.

Honestly, this country is full of fucking such incompetants that it beggars belief.

Peace and love, kids.