Sunday, March 13, 2016

The B-Movie Cycle

The B-Movie Cycle

I have had a long time fascination with B-movies ever since I was a child. I would stay up late and watch USA Up All Night or whatever I could back when we had only the odd three stations.
They always entertained me in the fact of the lack of regard for scripting, acting and camera work. I always wondering if they even cared about what they were making at the time or just having fun throwing things together.
Now an adult and I dabble in filmmaking I understand the restraints of low budget and the struggle to get talent.

That aside B-movies are a love of mine Ed Wood, Roger Corman and even Golan and Globus.
To that end once I started filmmaking my immediate goal was to make a bad movie, ok I digress to make a B-movie in the style that entertained me as a youth.

Our first movie at Butterfleye Films was in fact “Attack of the Atomic Zombies”(AOTAZ) a love letter to the 1950’s Atomic Age films. It was fun and rewarding to make. (It even got us to Boston Comic Con where we showed the film to standing room only) great memories with friends and family making that picture.You can watch it here:Attack of the Atomic Zombies

With that film under my belt, I decided I want to do the B-Movie Cycle: Put simply make a B-movie from each of these time periods the 50's ,60’s,70’s, and 80's. check the 50’s off with AOTAZ.
The next one we tried was the 1980’s. we only made a handful of trailers but it proved it could work for us. The film "Night of the Slasher 7: Cabin of the Undead" I like the idea of being in the middle of a fictional slasher series in the 1980's mostly because they made them so damn fast back then. This was also a great deal of fun and very nostalgic as I grew up in the 80's Here are the trailers:

That leave only two more to make the 1960’s and 1970s. For the 1960’s I really want it to be a beach film with aliens perhaps but it must be a musical. That would be a lot of fun since I am a musician.
The 1970’s B-movie will probably deal with Satanism, time travel and black exploitation themes because you know the 70’s  time will tell what will happen with these but I just wanted to share one of my goals while I make films. I hope you have enjoyed this and keep watch the skies and sewers and wherever else B-movie movie monsters might appear

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Friday, September 11, 2015

Being stuck in the middle of the story!

OK so we are pretty much at the in-between point of The Realm saga. By that I mean filming and producing the story. It is here that I find self-doubt and negative thoughts permeating my skull. Suddenly nothing is good enough and everything I have done to this point is garbage!!!

It is a weird sensation considering the showing so far has done better than I expected. It’s not like people aren’t jazzed about the idea or the show…they are and it’s wonderful! I think all the negative feelings and such are coming from me.

I am sure there are many creatives (Writers, actors, musicians, etc.) who go through this experience. You get to a point where you realize that your soul is exposed in the story you are telling and you feel like no one is getting what you are trying to do and you have to fight to get the message across. It hurts and you want to yell and scream sometimes and just say “FORGET IT! I AM DONE!” Then you have a drink and you calm down.

At the end of this funk you start to remember why you did it in the first place. You look at your old notes when you conceived the idea and go “That’s right. That’s what I wanted to say and accomplish.” Suddenly you fell a little better and strengthened again.

That’s the key…at least for me. Remember why you started what you did and never let that go. It’s like a trip into the woods, you feel determined to walk the path, but somewhere the path leaves you and you get lost and scared. Then, you remember the path and find your way again and the journey becomes fresh and you can travel until the light at the close of the path leads you to the end.

Monday, August 3, 2015

The History of Neverwhere!

I have always been fascinated by histories, Real, imaginary makes no difference. I love seeing how the actions of one thing lead to greater upsets or victories and how it shapes the lives of those who pass through its wake.
I first got enamored by this concept after reading Lord of the Rings and then the Book of Lost Tales. Tolkien sense of history and culture woven into Middle Earth hooked into my brain like a giant claw and gently set me on a path to create my own mythos... or two.

I found a great avenue for this in Dungeons and Dragons as a child. I could create any world set up any rules and culture I liked. It was a great time for my imagination. It is still with me today.
Since those early days I have had the fortune to create some imaginary worlds with long histories and cultures of their own, it has been a pleasure.

Now if you are wondering where all of this bragging is leading to, it’s simple…The Realm.

The world of the Realm has a unique 10,000 century history I have crafted and probably less than 1 percent will make it to the screen. The reason it matters is that knowing where the world the story takes place came from makes it easier to shape its future as well as use the smallest detail to propagate a storyline.

Names like Ironcrest, Mayamar, IP, Thayne, Alatiphuna and The War of the Dark Ones are part of that history and you will only hear slight references to them in The Realm but they all have history and meaning to people from this culture.  It allows the characters to speak with them as casually as we might talk about Washington or World War 2. 

Cross section of the Ironcrest Map

So I would say if you ever want to create your own world for a story, dig deep! Enjoy discovering the people and events that shaped that world. Eventually they will start telling you their history and that becomes its own reward.

I love exploring the back stories of a world and discovering why two sects might be at war with each other. Maybe someday if people are interested I might start a Wiki on The Realm who knows I might do it because I think it’s fun and cool.  I hope one day you can find your own history of Neverwhere and hold it close to your heart.

Friday, May 15, 2015

"Ahh I get it now."

Well it’ll be a little over a month till The Realm premiers and I am filled with joy and terror. We have been working on this show for over a year with planning pre-production and such and now it’s about to be real.

I want it to do well obviously, so many talented people helping out both in front and behind the camera and yet I don’t want to let any of them down. I suppose if nothing else this experiment shows how a vast amount of creative people can come together to create something that means something  for each of them.

I have a great deal of confidence in the story I made and how Allyson (My wife) brilliantly fleshed it out and gave my characters life, real human moments and connected it all to tell the story of The Realm.

I really think this blog is just a place to rest my nerves and give a release to the stress and excitement about this project of our passions. A year from now when we are entering season two I am sure I will be in the same state if not worst because I know it will be over shortly thereafter.

As any creator of an idea can tell you it’s always scary to expose a part of yourself to the world and hope they find something they like in it. I suppose that is the test in the end…can apart of you reach out and touch another person and give you a sense of connection. That moment when they watch it and say “Ahh I get it now.” That is my favorite part.
There are shows I have watched and loved moments when it all came together or  two characters finally kissed and so on. I want to have those moments with The Realm. The moments I enjoyed so much as a viewer.

I also wanted to take the things I enjoyed most and translate them into dramatic setting. These things being Anime, Dungeons & Dragons and romance. I know…that is a weird trio of things to blend together but none the less these things have given me great comfort and joy through my life so I wanted to explore aspects of them in my creation.

Perhaps one day if there is interest I will point out what element is what in the series or maybe, just maybe I can reach across the web and make a connection with someone and they will say “Ahh I get it now.”

Monday, January 19, 2015

Using the RotoRig.... what is a RotoRig???

I am glad you asked.  I am here today to talk about my experience so far with the Rotorig. For those unfamiliar here is the video

Well I built it with the help of my Father-in-law who is an awesome engineer! The whole thing cost about $65 dollars to make, which is not bad when you look at jib prices. The two white brackets you see in the photo are actually larger than the prescribed ones as they are near impossible to get. (Again my Father-in-law. Brilliant!)

It really needs a hefty tripod to support the 5+ pounds if you want to swing it around any, but I have been practicing and within a week I have started to gain control of it. I still need to work with it more.
Remember this is a camera Jib (Crane) and shoulder Rig, you can use it two way. That is great!

I plan on using it in out upcoming short film “In Memoriam” An epic battle in the snow! I also plan on using it for our web series “TheRealm” That is really the idea behind the short is to get used to filming fight sequences and to test out the rig.

You won’t see its use till probably Episode 7 forward as of this writing we have shot the first 6.
Also if you plan on building it either get help while using it or be prepared to awkwardly unscrew wing nuts as you try to attack the camera to either of the two sides…but perhaps you will master better than I.

Below is a video I made at early attempts to master this awesome device. With a little more practice I shall be ready for our January 31 shoot of “In Memoriam” Wish me luck and I hope this helps someone!


Friday, December 26, 2014

Get ready for THE REALM!

The Realm. The story of James Lockwood (Sacco Sarkis) and a mysterious girl (Kimberley Miller) he finds naked on his doorstep who has no memory of herself and magic powers. They race to discover who she is and why people from her realm are crossing over to our world to capture or kill her. We follow the story both here on Earth and in The Realm, but eventually the two worlds will collide!

Here we are six months till The Realm premieres and already we have our first teaser trailer out and the main theme has been released to the masses. We are very excited to get things rolling and will be promoting the web series very heavy between March-June with special features and such before during and after season one airs.

Things to look forward to: 

Inside The Realm: This 1-3min show will feature interviews and clips with the cast and the crew to give an insight into the behind the scenes of the show. The three episodes will be released before the first episode of The Realm then during our season 1 break Inside the realm will air the 1st and 15th of every month until season 2 comes out. (See we want to keep you entertained!)
Secrets of The Realm: This special (Length not determined yet) will feature Tony and Allyson Diana and some cast members as we look back at season one and reveal where SOME of the hidden clues and Easter Eggs are in each episode. This will help to prime you guys to keep a keen eye on season 2 to get ahead of your friends on the mystery.
The Movie! : If all goes well and season 1&2 prove popular we want to finish the story off with a blockbuster styled film. We will be using crowd funding during season 2 to hopefully raise enough money to make the most amazing film to end our story of two world’s right!
But wait there is more.
Tony is working hard behind the scenes to get the cast and crew of The Realm beyond the web. He is currently talking to Comic Con people and news outlets to get our story out there and into the world at large. We will keep you up to date on all things Realm both here and on our Facebook page.
Help spread the word for the exciting project and join the Realmpire!