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Monday, June 26, 2006

Around the World in 22 Days

Insanity is genetic, according to my mom. But it's my dad who has the really crazy ideas, like celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary with one hell of a trip.

So far, they have yet to report in from Tokyo, their first stop, but hey, that first hop over the international date line is a doozy. If you're interested in these things, though, you might keep checking in. Dad might even make some more bulleted lists!

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Sunday, June 25, 2006

Rule Britannia

So, in the midst of this incredibly busy and draining chunk of life, I seem to be ODing on British-set media. New Doctor Who, Shaun of the Dead. I'm very nearly done with the second Queen and Country novel. I went and saw England v. Ecuador this morning, which was awesome. I am having a very hard time keeping track of my aiches.

And tonight I watched the miniseries The Second Coming, which was apparently quite the big deal back when it premiered in 2003 on Britain's iTV, but I'd never heard of it until it popped up during a Christopher Eccleston search on Netflix. (I'm having a bit of an Eccleston thing right now. Sod off if you don't understand and seriously, this is what it's like in my head ALL THE TIME right now.) Anyways, average-bloke Eccleston goes missing, comes back, and starts claiming to be the Son of God. And it is alternately weird, sad, smart, stupid, scary, hilarious, and challenging. If you're saying to yourself "Oi, Liz, that sounds quite a bit like new Doctor Who, yeah?" well of course there's a damn reason for it: it's written by Russell T. Davies, who's the new Doctor Who show-runner -- and is himself alternately weird, sad, smart, stupid, scary, hilarious, and challenging. Second Coming is more challenging than Who, and nearly lost me several times... Only to win me right back. It sure pokes at your religious beliefs HARD. Why the hell can't America make TV like that, eh?

Oh, right.

Eccleston is so ODD. They used tons of natural lighting for Second Coming and so he'd go from looking beautific to ghoulish in a matter of moments; the key to Eccleston's attractiveness, it seems, is found in minimizing the more cadaveresque aspects of his skull.

But he's got so much damn glee. It just leaks out of those eyes and that grin. Which makes him so incredibly fun to watch. Even as you try and remember that he doesn't play one of the zombies in 28 Days Later.

I think it's Elizabeth next in the queue, but I'm gonna slowly try and wean myself off this British thing, maybe. If only because I can only hold in my bad attempt at the actual accent for so long. And once I slip into that, God save the Queen.


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Thursday, June 15, 2006

Thank yous

So, um, yeah. Been a little busy. Yeah. It turns out that doing extensive pre-production on a short film, working ten hours a day, and having a life aren't mutually conducive things. There are many many little things to think about -- documents to prepare, storyboards to draw -- and it's all just so consuming. I work on instructional videos and I work on the short. Sometimes, there's sleep, before or after writing emails and researching 70s fashion and make-up. (If I ever again say the words "it takes place during the nineteen-" just cut me off there and punch me in the face. It'll be a lot more time-efficient.)

I bought Mamet on directing last weekend -- $15 for a hundred pages of brilliant. Mamet on directing is just awesome; he's kind of grouchy and fed up with Hollywood and writes the majority of the book as a Socratic dialogue with a bunch of ill-advised students who rarely, if ever, get the answer right. It's Mamet in the 80s, after directing only two movies. It's all about visual storytelling and not giving a crap about performance and just piecing together shots. It's super-cute.

So I might thank David Mamet in the credits of the short. I'm already thanking a lot of people. The list grows progressively longer. Family, natch. Pretty much all of my friends. Some of my vague acquaintances. Some friends of friends. Some friends of friends of friends. People who have lent me their notes and props and guns and knives and love and support. Oh, and also the IRS and the DOD, as this movie is being funded by my tax return and some freelance writing I did. It was going to be funded solely by the IRS. But then, the location we want realized that they could probably blackmail some cash out of us four days before shooting. So now I'm using DOD money, too. I'm sure everyone involved would approve.

Last night was funny. I stayed late at the office finishing some scripts, and made it home ten minutes before my actors were scheduled to show up for our late-night rehearsal (which we set up via cell phone while I stood in line to board the bus home). And I was exhausted and greasy from the long day and totally unmotivated to work after having gotten up at 6:30 that morning for the day's first rehearsal...

...And then we finished blocking out the climax and we worked on the beats and I said "slower, slower" a few times and it all just started coming together. The actors are professional and fun, they seem to be into the material, and they seem to be listening. To me.

I had thought I would go to bed right after the actors left. But I ended up staying up another hour and a half. I'd never felt so awake before.

Man, I'm gonna be so PISSED if this movie sucks. PISSED, I tell you. But I'll only have myself to blame.

There's something thrilling in that.

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Friday, June 02, 2006

Well, you know that I am a behind blogface when freakin' ASA has been posting more than me. Take that how you will.

Oddly, spending ten hours a day writing about the internet (hi, day job! hi, boss!) makes one less inclined to spend lots of time on it. Last night, I stopped checking my email at 10 and I felt like a motherfucking rockstar. Of course, then I checked my email this morning and I had like fifteen emails, ten of which actually required my attention. The other five were from Democrats. Sorry, Democrats. Politics are for people with time.

Hah! I thought I had ten whole minutes to write this, but I was wrong, because I needed those ten minutes to email out SMRT-TV articles for editing and what-not. HAHAHAH my life is funny.

I'll be shooting a short this weekend, prepping another short, editing the short we shoot (fingers crossed), going to one or two parties, writing my cute little butt off, and maye get some motherfucking sleep. YAY! Fun times!

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