{Like Spinning Leaves: January 2007

Like Spinning Leaves

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Eve of (Self) Destruction

Well, getting ready to turn in.

Tomorrow is the first day of principal photography on Tennessee. Aside from the occasional bump in the road, things have proceeded along a considerably smoother track than the last time we went down this path. There are a number of things I could attribute this to but they'd all probably get me fired so it's best to let it be for now.

It hadn't occurred to me since I decided to write this sentence but I'm kind of looking forward to the pre-dawn call times, the seemingly interminable 12-14+ hour work days, the constant feeling of "hurry up and wait" that seems to define the making of any film with a budget exceeding $1,000. Maybe it's just the 3 catered meals a day and all the traveling to places I'd never go otherwise.

Things have slowed with the Blip Fest editing...eh, not much to report otherwise.

tired. hopefully I'll have something worth saying after the first day of shooting. good evening.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

blast level 3

too lazy for titles today. just picked the first thing itunes' randomizer came up with. A weekend of cutting yielded two more Blip Fest videos (one for Bud Melvin, another for Portalenz). At this rate, things should come together in a timely fashion.

There's a The Album Leaf show here in Albuquerque on Wednesday so I definitely won't be missing out on that since the list of activities in this town seem to lie somewhere between Nothing and Not-Being-Hit-By-A-Flaming-Blimp-Counting-As-Something. Naturally I got us lost on the way to an open house at the brand new studio in town....apparently it's one of the premier production facilities in the country. figures.

Things with Tennessee are going fine. Thanks to the trust we've established over the last few years since we first started working with LDE, we're able to be present for a lot more. Today we got to sit in on and record the table reading (the cast actors get together with the writer/director/producer and read through the entire movies and discuss)...an interesting process that many don't ever give much thought to if they even know about it.

What else what else...I'm getting a little tired on account of notmuchsleep last night. Our good pal Stephen (with whom we bonded as production on Shadowboxer neared its conclusion about 2.5 years ago) should be in town tomorrow. That'll be fun.

Saturday, January 20, 2007


Eh. The lack of updates is owed largely to two frustrations. One was pure hell, the other is a bit of a masochistic pleasure. Long story short, I spent a stressful couple of hours (stretched over two days) trying to restore some lost information on one of my boss' computers.

The other involves synchronizing multiple angles of the same performance from the blip festival...In case this wasn't made clear earlier, I brought a bunch of Blip Fest tapes, my new Western Digital 500GB drive, and my computer to New Mexico. The plan is to edit all weekend and shoot for Tennessee during the week. Owens and I will probably take one weekend off before we leave NM to investigate the surrounding mountains so that's something to look forward to.

Anyway, getting back to the other frustration: Editing. Because the particular act in question (Portalenz) didn't really have individual "songs," but a steady and organic development of various themes and refrains over the course of a 30 minute set, I'm trying to condense the entire thing into about 5 minutes by isolating each progression, deleting the parts where they repeat them, and then stitching them all together...it just barely makes sense to me, don't worry. The good news is that, when done correctly, it works well. Well enough that it's worth the pain in the ass, anyway.

So my enthusiasm for the project was supposed to carry me through the night but I feel a headache coming on. I already cut one video today for Bud Melvin (I've got a link to a track of his a few entries back...) so maybe that's enough for now.

Things are proceeding as usual with preproduction. money. casting. etc.

Some snow today. And a so so burrito. I'm sleeping.

More editing tomorrow morning. Maybe something a little more laid back?

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Live From New [Mexico], It's...

I had to actually wake up in Albuquerque before I felt confident enough to say that the Behind The Scenes documentary for Tennessee has finally begun.

From what little I was able to see from the window of our descending airplane and our ride from the hotel to the production office, I can already tell that the combination of rock formations and various points along the earth's rotation around the sun are going to produce some very exciting visual results that stand a chance at living up to the hype of all my google image searches of "new mexico desert sunset."

So we've come in towards the tail end of preproduction. The cast is arriving, fittings and rehearsals will fill up the space between now and next wednesday when principal photography begins. I believe there are roughly 20 days of shooting planned out over the next few weeks but that's always subject to change. I know it seems odd that the film is titled as it is when we're only spending a quarter of our time in the state of Tennessee but, given my current surroundings, I have little reason to complain.

Oh speaking of casting, Owens and I were met with quite the surprise when we looked over the wall of headshots of all the actors in the film. Well, I'll let the picture speak for itself.

He's only playing a small part as far as I know but I gotta say, those two or three days of Bernie Mac are going to be amazing.

You know, the whole reason I decided to start this blog was so I could provide day to day updates on Tennessee. Took long enough.