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Monday, August 24, 2009

On me Holliers!


I'm off for a week. Computer is going off. Phone is going off. I will be unreachable! Hurray and Hurrah!

Finishing up a few things today, burning off Slán for duplication, sending out a few last email and working on finishing the first draft of Night (only took a year). Emails concern 140 and I'm happy to say the majority of them seem to have worked this time, so we can mark a few of the MIA filmmakers off the list. The plan is to start the edit on the 31st - a full month behind when I had hoped to start, tut-tut.

I hope once I get cutting and find a rhythm it will move along quickly. Music is the main thought on my mind right now and the sourcing there of. I'll probably do a lot of temp myself, maybe if some stuff works it can stay, but I have a couple of possibilities for some original and exceptional indy artists who could bring a lot to the project. Will keep you posted.

I'm psyched about finishing Night tonight -that's if we do! I hope we do! May not, still have a new scene to create from scratch and some character development to do. It will be close. I would hate to leave it for a week so close to the end, but Thomas is forever dropping off the map, so I thought I deserved a break for once! Haven't had one for a while. My back, and brain, need it!

So fare-thee-well for a week or so. Live, love and grow. Take pride. Take care. Look left and right when crossing. Sing load. Sing proud. Sleep well. Sweet dreams. Stay safe. Stay calm. Breathe. Look. Taste. Touch. Make love. Make bread. Call a friend. Have a beer. Watch a movie... make it a good one. And until we meet again... au revoir my friends.

Friday, August 21, 2009

New Song "Rest"


Here's a song I wrote for Slán agus Beannacht. Enjoy.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

That's a Lock

I'm happy to announce that my third short film Slán agus Beannacht is locked.

I finished the music in the couple of hours I had free while waiting for the Nationwide crew to arrive last Friday. As you may have guessed from the previous entry, below, I was feeling somewhat dejected about the music. Nothing was gelling. Nothing was right.

But then I played something very simple and familiar to me, some chords I've been messing around with in one form or another for years. I recorded them and listened back. While listening, I sang the lyrics from the previous song in my head - they didn't quite fit - but I found that if I cut the sentences in half - without losing the meaning - they fit perfectly.

So I recorded the new chords, with some complementary chords and picking laid on top and some synth strings over that and then sang the new lyric atop that and from all that came a very sweet, honest and fitting song for the end of the film.

I dropped it in and by some uncanny coincidence it fit perfectly, I mean time-wise. I didn't time it out at all. I figured I might have to fade out at the end, but I didn't - the final note was struck on the final fade out - spot on. It was meant to be and so it stayed and that was it. Done.

Something of a coincidence too that the Nationwide crew showed up an hour later to conduct the first interview for the project! Nice bit of promotion to begin with. Plenty more to come. Now begins the festival run, and I do mean to push this one out into the world. Hopefully it will find a home, as the last two have done. But first the premiere, a local screening and something of a party I think!

Happy days indeed.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Music Box!



Busy day today, this morning began with a trip to the music store to buy a mic jack for my computer. My dad and I took the opportunity to jam a bit on the Lowdins and Martins - nice!
Then home to begin recording the music for Slán agus Beannacht, the final step in getting the film completed.

A disaster!

It started with a slapstick scenario the likes of which Laurel and Hardy would have been proud - tangled leads, mic stands knocking over stacks of books, tripping over a stool, getting tangle in headphones... after the slapstick came the technical - the computer would not pick up the mic, no matter what I tried. After 45 minutes I finally got it working - only to find it was recording at a very low volume. I adjusted all the levels, but it was no good. Anyway, decided to record - wasn't happening! Too low with a really bad hiss. So I gave up. Will try again tomorrow.

The afternoon and evening went much better!

My friend Mark called in to have a look and the grade and sound mix on Slán (he had seen the previous version) and agreed it was much better (thanks again to Rob Mullen and Mairtin De Barra for the sound links). So I was happy about that. Once the music is done I'll lock it and start organising the premiere and the getting of it out into the world.

This evening was a screening of Bill, For Short in Boyne Books. It went really well, a small crowd of about 20 people turned up, it was a small enough room and they filled it up nicely, kept it intimate. We watched the film, the behind the scenes and a poem and visual piece Marc put together, inspired by the film, which was really nicely put together. The film got a good reaction. It still amazes me how, for such a cheap and quickly made film, it connects with and moves people.

Marc is now talking about putting together a short film night with films from the area, which would be great. So hopefully there'll be more news on that soon.

Got a couple of 140 clips in today too, which was nice, so they're still coming in thankfully! Hopefully I can start thinking about the edit soon. I'm aiming to screen at Hatch Fest in October, so hopefully the late clips wont cause us to miss that opportunity! Keep 'em comin' guys, keep 'em comin'!

That's all for now, more news soon.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009


Today was spent grading Slán agus Beannacht! At last, didn't take as long as I though once I got stuck in. So that's finished now. All I need are some sound effects to fill it out in place and the music, which I will most likely compose and record myself... it's cost effective!!!

Evening writing sessions on Night from here on in, just like the old days. When Thomas and I would write while he was working he would call in on the way home, usually around 8pm and we would write until 10 - 11. It was great, I am definitely a night writer. I tend to slip into the Vampire hours, which I enjoy. Those days will probably be gone soon!

So he's due in soon and we're going to write till mid-night, 20 pages or so to go. Looking forward to it.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Looking back.


I worked in this factory when I was a kid, 10 or 11, over 20 years ago (getting old!) my Uncle owned an Aluminum fabrication company. My Dad worked there and I spent a summer as a helper. Third floor, the windows to the left of the long central arched window.

It was fun. I remember the wide open factory floor with just four or five workers at separate benches at different jobs. The big windows with the light streaming in and the view out to the river.

It's closed now and falling down. Apartments had been planned before the recession hit, but that never moved forward. Now it stands crumbling and fenced off. Another childhood memory surrounded by corrugated Iron fences - still, hasn't stopped me finding a way in. I believe I have that right. It holds some of my memories, part of my history, after all.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

August Begins

The Nationwide spot was great, lots of positive reaction and I thought they did a good job. If you missed it you can catch on the RTE Player, I'm at 16'36" if you want to skip the first two reports (which are also interesting, about craft Galleries around Ireland).

As mentioned below the film and exhibition that feature in the piece is now available to view in Boyne Books, Callan Art, Narrow West Street, Drogheda. I hung the pictures yesterday and they'll be there until the end of the month.

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In other news, Thomas and I unfortunately did not get to finish Night yesterday, we got close and there's not much left, but as with our schedule it might be some time before we get back to it now. We created a lot of news scenes from the original draft. I think we've really created two strong lead characters, which we didn't have before. It was rather mechanical, just bare bones. We've added the meat over the last two weeks.

We have two new scenes to add, which we've talked about and are really cool, one in particular, it's old school! It's really added something to the flavour of the entire piece and captured what we're trying to do with it. So can't wait to get in and write that.

I shouldn't take more then a week to finish it, when we can get to it that is! Then the wives get to read it - tell us if we've had our heads up our arses for a year! If they don't and think it's good, then we'll organise a reading where we'll get it out of our heads for the first time in that year and really see what work and what doesn't. And then it's out into the big bad word to try and get it made.

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News on other projects:

Angelina:

Shelved. As I missed the application, which it was written specifically for, I'm not going to put any more energy into it. Although I love the idea and I'm happy with the script, for something that complicated and potentially expensive I'd rather put the energy into getting a feature film made. I was very sorry to lose that chance.

Bad Moon:

I watched The Mist last night and totally loved it, but it got me thinking about my monster script again! I do love monster movies! So may try to carve out some time to refine that script, I think there's a lot in there that works, but plenty that needs to be over hauled. After all, it's been 4 years since I wrote it.

Ghoster:

Not forgotten. It's always on my mind. I still haven't got back to it yet, which is a good thing in a way, means there's been plenty else going on, but it is a script I would like to finished and see if there's a home for it. It's a film about painters working on a site and it was written in the middle of the boom, so I may need to rethink certain aspects of it.

Slán agus Beannacht:

Being coloured and wont be to far away, so you'll be hearing plenty more about that soon as I begin to promote it.

140:

Still a few to get, it's reached the cut off deadline Aug 1st! But I still have 40 clips to get back, so I may have to delay the edit unfortunately! I've done all I can to remind people, I'm just hoping the remaining filmmakers will send their clips out soon! - Please please send me you clips guys! I need them to complete the film!

I hope I get them all soon, as mention I have a baby on the way and if the edit runs into the birth 140 will be delayed inevitably - and I don't want that to happen. I would like to have it finished before the birth.

I don't want to begin cutting until I have all the clips I'm going to get because as you may or may not know there is a rhythm to editing, every image will lead onto the next and to the next and so on. As I cut there will be a flow, a rhythm, just like in a song and I wont be able to just drop a scene in, like drop a new chord in the middle of an already well constructed song, it would completely mess up the melody, you would have a bug 'Clunk' in the middle of the song that would pull you out of it! Tacking late clips on at the end wont work either, otherwise the ending wont make any sense. It all needs to be cut as one, at least, it does for me. So hopefully I can do that soon.

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That's me. Lots on, lots to do, hopefully I can continue to work on all these projects and bring a one or two to fruition. I will of course keep you all posted!

I'll leave you with this, a friend of mine, director Mark Lebenon, recently visited the wonderful and completely mad Fantasia Film Festival in Montreal Canada with his film Slam Bang, here's an interview he did during his time there. Enjoy!