Mobile download for only .99 – Street Language film

Would you take a risk to save someone’s life? Check out our new short film, “Street Language”, now available for download and on DVD.

Would you take a risk to save someone’s life? Check out our new short film, “Street Language“, now available for download and on DVD. Click here to check it out.

First Festival Screening for “Street Language”

Green Bay Film Festival Logo

We’re pleased to begin our film festival run with Street Language screening at the upcoming Green Bay Film Festival, March 23-25. More news coming. If you’re in the area, check out this great festival. [Better attitudes, and you won’t get smashed by paparazzi like that other fest in Utah!]

 

THE MICROBUDGET CONVERSATION: SCRIPT V. STORY | The Filmmaker Magazine Blog

As we’ve been in the process of making a ‘micro-budget’ short film, I have been thinking about the viability of such ventures.

As we’ve been in the process of making a ‘micro-budget’ short film, I have been thinking about the viability of such ventures. I know it’s possible to work like we have been working – with volunteer cast and crew and donated locations and gear. And I believe our film, structured, scripted, planned, and all that, will benefit from the approach.

This article, published a while back on Filmmaker Magazine’s blog, makes the argument that micro-budget filmmakers should embrace an alternative approach that emphasizes the discovery of stories that flow from real life, rather than struggling to come up with the perfect screenplay.

 … if our goal as micro-budget filmmakers is to make films free of budget restrictions, we need to find alternative methods that embrace the places we live, allow us to believe they are interesting, and trust the people around us to bring us some really interesting material. We all know this familiar adage: life is stranger than fiction. Once we let life leak into our narratives, I think we will be shocked at the abundance we suddenly have with the stories that are available.

THE MICROBUDGET CONVERSATION: SCRIPT V. STORY | The Filmmaker Magazine Blog.

I have a lot of experience in documentary filmmaking so I can appreciate the freedom and excitement of seeing stories unfold in the process of making a film. And I can see the author’s point that taking this approach can get filmmakers away from the computer and into the real process of making something. There is a part of me that does sometimes want to just pick up a camera and see what happens.

How Do You Know When It’s Done?

I think this is a common malady among indie filmmakers. I know I will see something on every viewing that strikes me as odd, something that needs a little smoothing, a lingering doubt about a creative choice I’ve made.

Ah, that feeling when you make the last edit, tweak the last audio level, hit ‘render’ on your video file…

I love that moment when I know I have finished my film. It’s something I’m eager to show to the world. There’s nothing left hanging. It’s the last time I fire up the project in my editing program.

Actually, it’s hard for me to see that moment clearly. As a filmmaker who has his hands in the minutia of my films, that moment is actually really blurry. I may not even see it until it’s history. In the case of “Street Language” my new short, I’m the guy who wrote the script, did much of the production management, directed the film, and have been completing the post-production after a friend did the rough cut for me. Some pieces are really put to bed: script, acting, the picture cut, even the music at this point. But, because I’m a slightly obsessed filmmaker–I call it ‘high standards’–and because I have the whole film sitting on my own hard drives that I can fire up anytime a thought strikes me, this film seems to be inching slowly toward being really “done”.

I think this is a common malady among indie filmmakers. I know I will see something on every viewing that strikes me as odd, something that needs a little smoothing, a lingering doubt about a creative choice I’ve made. I know I’ve been over the film to the sub-frame level in many parts. Some choices are ones I’ve examined many times and come to the same conclusion. And I know that there are no perfect films–to the filmmaker. Look at George Lucas, causing a ruckus because he’s still tweaking Star Wars, after over 30 years!

If George does it, maybe I shouldn’t feel guilty. I know other filmmakers who walk away and don’t look back; and sometimes I think they should have.

I am really happy with this film. Preview audiences have loved it. My wife cried at the right time when I showed it to her (and doesn’t think I’ve wasted my time and our money making it.)

I know I’ll walk away and be done with it, soon. I’ve finished hundreds of projects in my career. But when you’re in this stage, just after all of the really heavy lifting is done, but before it’s set loose on the world, there is a little season of hesitation, button pushing, and oh-so-close satisfaction.

“Street Language” – Sometimes There Is No Negotiating

There are some situations that you can just solve with money; sometimes money doesn’t talk!

I’m in the midst of a creative film production with an all-volunteer cast and crew, a mix of seasoned professionals and students, and locations that are being provided gratis by a variety of business and property owners. [This isn’t all that unusual, but I’m a long way from film school and sometimes wonder whether I should have developed a ‘real’ career by now!]

Our Alley Location - beautiful!

Late last week one of our key locations for “Street Language” fell through. Actually, it became apparent that, for all of our conversations and attempts to ‘lock’ a skid-row motel room for a long day of filming, the manager had decided we weren’t worth the hassle. No way to reserve a room, no guarantee one would be empty, no control whatsoever – so we bailed. There are some situations that you can just solve with money; pay more for the room, rent for a week, etc. Sometimes even money doesn’t talk.

Of course, I was praying hard this weekend!

We are partnering with a great organization Mile High Ministries, who is hot on the project and wants to help. So we got back on the phone to them. They run a transitional housing facility for homeless families called Joshua Station. Yesterday, just before our final production team meeting, we got word that they have a room available for us. Someone just moved out, so it could be a mess. Perfect!

We are really fortunate to have a great crew of volunteers for this project and they are doing their best to keep their commitments to our shooting schedule. It’s a lot to ask of these people who all have other jobs, families, and lives outside of our project. So we are very grateful.

We go into production this coming weekend (Aug 20/21). You can help us make it happen by joining our production team through our IndieGoGo page.