so I had my new script and had prop complications, then I wrote a new script about a security guard fighting chavs… people instantly thought Harry Brown but it’s much more based on DEAD MANS SHOES.. The script was too violent and too much work for the time I have… So my new scripts underway but here are some shots from “The Security guard with a baseball bat that kills chavs film” (because it was untitled)

T.S.G.W.A.B.B.T.K.C film is set in a film noir kind of city that has been inspired by the GAME Max Payne. An action Film Noir about a serial killer security guard

Also thinking about using it as my “projects” screen on my DVD menu

Keep an eye out for more soon

Kind of feel like addressing some things that get on my nerves because there seems to be a serious lack of thought in the criticism that “books are better than films and films are better than theatre”. Likewise between movie remakes, that movies shouldn’t be remade for what ever pretentious reason.

Not going to hang on these rants though since I’ve got loads to do today and I’ve discovered that I’m in a REALLY ranty mood right now.

One of the faily obvious things about movies and books is that they’re completely different, and they’re completely different mediums. Like films and games movies are adaptations of books. Likewise theatre, theatre a bit like books is much more based on the spoken word where movies are greatly based on actions instead of words. When adapting a book to a movie, the movie might even completely rely on how well it’s been adapted, for example if Alexander Mackendrick had adapted a book I’m sure he’s one of the very few that could actually pull it off.

I’m bias about this obviously, but sharing some of what I know so people actually know why books and movies are different. I’m dyslexic, I’m also a film student.. obviously I like movies better because I really dislike reading novels.. As much as I would like to enjoy reading I can’t. Doesn’t mean I’m not creative or don’t have an imagination which are often criticism for films vs books. I make movies, I have a really creative mind.

I just read a book and feel nothing, movies are a mixture of moving images combined with sounds and great composed music… I’m a massive fan of composed music so when they put a great classical track over meaningful moving images it’s so much more moving than a book could ever be.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder though.

anything to increase productivity is a bonus, I would do anything you can just to increase your work productivity. Doing work quickly and efficently is really important, reason I bought a small laptop.

Incase you haven’t been there already, get on ebay, the amount of items I’ve found that help with my films on ebay are uncountable, there’s thousands of products I could buy and use. Some people are still under the impression ebay isn’t safe or worried about getting a cheap product, but all you have to do is check seller feedback.

Anyhoo, got this tiny laptop off ebay for £120, I really just need it for a quick internet connection and to run my script writing programs + microsoft word, etc so I can do all my film paper work.

Part of my HND course is my DVD, which is actually my graded unit.. My graded unit also ties in with my web presence which is actually where this blog comes in… Anyway, creating a DVD interface is one thing, but what I really want to do is create a DVD interface that’s simple but it makes people wants to look at it.

I did this before by creating a DVD menu with my sunset images

The nice images were the first draft but they didn’t move so it wasn’t entertaining enough.

Then I got the Hurt Locker on DVD and the menu blew me away. If you watch the hurt locker you will see all the high speed footage they got. Well the menu is basically still images or high speed footage that’s rotoscoped and then turned from 2D in to 3D layers and the layers are spread apart in Z space to give a 3D look.

Basically in English it’s like moving through a scene that’s frozen in time. I decided to mimic this effect for my DVD by using screens from my latest film RECON.

Still a work in progress but you get the idea.. Still keeping the Information page with the sunsets but hopefully I’ll be able to turn those in to a virtual 3D photo as well

The main idea is to create a menu that people want to watch… I found myself watching the Hurt Locker DVD menu a few times and skipping to different sections to see different video. That’s what really inspired me, the fact that the DVD menu kept you watching it. I want to create a DVD menu that will keep people watching too.

Other than that I still want to keep the menu simple.. Very simple titles and very simple layout so it’s easy to navigate but the video is what will make it interesting

Because the banking situation is a pain in the ass my paypal still works flawlessly, I’m not the type to sit still so I’ve reordered props from a different airsoft shop… But could be soon running in to some big problems considering items are being shipped from Hong Kong…

Problems again as being alone against the clock. Likewise I’m extremely worried about the time it will take to get through customes and the price. The nature of my film’s action, I need action props I’ve mostly ordered clothing off this site, night vision goggles, rifle scope and helmet. Some of the most important things but if I can’t get them on time I have to start thinking about a plan C

Plan C being I have to put my sniper script on hold until the summer holidays and film a completely different easier film just to pass my college course.

Ambition is something that’s got me in to trouble a lot this year, it’s something you gamble with and if it pays off you come out miles ahead, if it doesn’t it can screw up everything. Since December I’ve had some pretty bad luck with my ambition. The problem with it is you have to rely on other people that don’t share the same ambition or enthusiasm as you do and they or other factors (like the bank, shipping etc) also put a hold on your production and can screw things up. So it doesn’t always pay off.

I’ll be EXTREMELY frustrated if I have to go to plan C… mainly because of the time I’ve put in to my film and the fact I’ve spent over £700 just for the props and I might not even be able to film it as a college project. The thought is severely worrying.

Just in case worst comes to worst and I can’t actually film it I’m writing a short script just now, a really short drama that will be really easy to film just so I can pass my course.

Could be experiencing a massive set back with my film. Something that’s holding up my film production is RBS (Royal Bank of Scotland), and it’s holding my production up on a monumental scale! I have no idea what they’re doing I have £400 available for buying these props but the payments aren’t going through.. I’ve made 3 recent payments, none of which are showing up on my bank statements, one of them is a paypal payment on vital pieces of clothing that’s pending.

Making student films you’re on a ridiculously tight schedule (since it’s supposed to be easy and small scale) everything has to be completed by the end of April, which seems like a long time but when you’re actually filming something the scale of my project it’s really not.

No props no film is the bottom line, I have no idea what’s going on but I hope it’s cleared up soon. There’s also another product on the list of things I bought that isn’t related to my film but considering my psychological mindset towards it, it’s something I can’t live without and missing it makes me seriously depressed so I hope my packages come tomorrow and I seriously hope there was no problem with RBS and I hope it’s all just postal workers being lazy because they just had their Easter holiday.. Being the only holiday I actually hate

quick post because I’m a busy student and got things to do…

You may or may not know my knew film’s being filmed in 2 – 3 weeks so just now I’m running tests with all the props and looking for the style of the movie. This also proves useful with other college work I have… I’m making a DVD and wanted a cool DVD interface, if you have The Hurt Locker on DVD you know the DVD menu is AWESOME! so I’m copying that look… These screens are TESTS for my film, but being used in my DVD menu

Anyhoo, this being my big end of year film, I’ve spend a massive amount of money on props and costumes because I really want to try and reach a broadcast quality that you don’t find in student films (especially student action movies)

A LOT MORE TO COME

Enjoy

What makes a film “British” or “American”? Recently sparked up this debate over kickass, someone commented on the spelling of “ass” and the difference between American and British and then people saying the movie isn’t British. But the Director Matthew Vaughn is British, he’s also an autuer with directing British Gangster flick Layer Cake, as well as producing a large number of British set and toned films (lock stock, snatch, Harry Brown, etc.

Then again the production company for kickass are American, and the film’s set in America with mainly American actors and a few British ones. Release date might also play a part with the films release in the UK 20 days before the US release.

Look at the Dark knight though, some say it’s an American film even though the director’s British

Sherlock Holmes even though that has a British setting and British director is backed by a list of US production companies, so even though it’s “British” some people will see it as more American.

Then again, Alexander Mackendrick who’s the big name nationality film maker, born in the US but from Scottish decent and grew up in Scotland.. He’s a British film maker making American films some people say.. Or British films until he went to Hollywood.

To be honest I have no idea what makes a film “British” or what makes a film “American” because the debate about everything is so awash with who’s in what company, where it’s set, the mood and the tone.

Some people may say it boils down to the FEELING of a film, US films have a very distinct feeling as aposed to British films which have a different atmosphere… Then again, Slumdog Millionare, is completely British, Danny Boyle British director, and all production companies are British but it’s set in India and has a very LARGER THAN LIFE, American style feel to it, this is the reason people associate Slumdog with Hollywood even though it has NOTHING to do with the US at all.

Likewise Black Hawk Down which some people call an American propaganda film making the Americans out to be the best and kicking ass, but directed by Ridley Scott who is British and made with 2 US companies and 1 British one.

A university did ask me if I’m British or Scottish and asked me how I view myself but what kind of a question is that, especially in film making when there is no real distinct nationality between film or if there is I have no idea what it is since it’s not the director, not the production companies, not the setting or the feeling.

Then again people contradict themselves, if Michael Bay an obviously American style director, directed a British tone movie people would still say it’s American or some may say Americans should make American films, British should make British films and not try and imitate because imitation doesn’t work… it obviously does because of the massive list of directors adapting styles. So if Matthew Vaughn can make an American film, Michael Bay can make a British one

My work is much more “American” something my tutor criticized me for, I should be more British but there is no definitive film making nationality so having this little film war weather it’s American or British is weird… European cinema on the other hand is set aside by style but even some French style films still have a little touch of American going in to them.

So yeah, I think the only thing DEFINITIVE enough to judge a films nationality by is that of the director…

not setting because settings change, not tone, mood or atmosphere because they differ and it’s narrow minded for film to stick to one medium (British being gritty, US being larger than life) not judging a nationality by production company either because they vary depending on a number of things…

So because it makes the most sense I would say the film shares the same nationality as the auteur (the director) – ergo, Kick Ass is British

But that’s my opinion which doesn’t count for much considering other people would argue tone.. but you can’t make a good argument out of tone because of films I just mentioned, blackhawk, slumdog, etc.. The only thing that stands firm is the directors nationality

Script, budgets, locations, casting, props, meetings, equipment and the list goes on.. so got my Recon script about snipers that I’m rewriting some dialogue, just contacted all my actors and people involved with production scheduling meetings.

Couple of things this week has in store besides a massive amount of meetings, got about 3 meetings this week, if not more.. but my budget also came through £985 budget for my film. Hey if you want it to look good you got to be willing to spend the cash.

So equipment, although I’ve already spent £3k on equipment so far I’m dishing out £400, likewise props and costume I’m guessing will take up £300 – 400 that’s pretty much of it all gone..

Spending this amount of money is EXTREMELY HARD! unbelievably so! You have no idea how much it pains me to spend £900 within a few days, especially when the money has just gone in to my bank acount… :*(((((

So call sheets something I’m working on, who’s doing what, when and where.. Scheduling everything, probably one of the most important things, I’m meeting with actors, going over lines, and blocking, scene mood and reaction. Fine tuning the storyboard and adding in shots, planning my visual FX

but the big one and the PAIN of everything to come FILMING ON AN ISLAND… A small sucluded island off the coast of Edinburgh, Cramond island, have to wait for the tide to go down to get there… filming then wait for the tide to go down to get back..

the reason I chose this island beside the fact it is secluded.. Military bunkers… but it also means I have to rewrite the script since I’ll have no acess to cars, also means I might need to bring lights and a generator which means walking across a mile with all this equipment could be a massive strain. Then again Michael Bay did film in the desert with his crew walking over massive sand dunes in blazing heat carrying 10x heavier equipment.. This is film making and got to do this kind of thing.

It’s my biggest project yet and as time winds down to the shoot week everything becomes more intense but I have no doubt it will all be worth it in the end.

Something I’ve been pondering over for a long time and after seeing recent advances in computer game technology and stories (TOM CLANCY – SPLINTER CELL) I think it’s pretty inevitable I’ll be filming something of this kind of genre in the future.

Got to give praise to the Splinter Cell franchise, the story that unfolds over a large series of games that started in 2002 and the story line’s turned personal. It’s a great step for gaming series and one that makes Sam Fisher possibly the strongest computer game character evers created.

Splinter Cell Double Agent being one of the best games I’ve ever played, also giving the feeling and intensity of a movie it did lead me to come up with stealth movie ideas at the time about car thieves. The story for conviction now has taken a larger than life kind of feel and Sam Fisher turning in to some kind of one man army, which is exactly the sort of thing I really enjoy.

I do get a lot of game inspiration probably just as much as from movies. Inspiration for my movie “Recon” about a sniper and a spotter was heavily inspired by Battle Field Bad Company 2… well the whole recon part was, and the fact that Sniping is a type of soldier everyone seems to love.

Also inspiration from Modern Warfare 2… Although I’ve lost complete respect for IW because of their greed I did like the idea of not actually seeing one characters face and that character being niether good nor bad… Leading for some interesting character development. Well that was me but from MW2 I did borrow the idea of never seeing the snipers face, taken from character in MW2 “Ghost”

The main idea behind the Sniper character is that you don’t know him and you don’t feel any empathy.. You don’t like him because he’s heartless but you do like him because he’s efficient. There’s something about not showing the characters face and only showing his eyes that’s good. When the character does decide to f*** orders and go in, you enjoy it… because through the script he obeys the rules making him heartless, you don’t like him.

I’ve talking about this character development before, not liking a cool character but loving it when he comes together with the good guy.

Anyhoo, getting a little side tracked but I do have plans for a stealth action thriller