Thursday, April 29, 2010

The 2015 Nike McFly's!

I would LOVE to get my hands on a pair of these!! They're available for $79 and don't have power laces...BUT HEY! What self respecting "Back To The Future" fan wouldn't want them! Check out this article on Back in the day, I actually bought a pair of the red and white Nikes that Michael J. Fox wore in the original film. I had them for several years but they ended up going in the trash when they became really old and worn out. Dumbass! I should have saved them for posterity! Oh well.


Shakira's going to Arizona to protest the new immigration law. Whoa, everybody back up, she's gonna start fiercely wiggling her hips...there in trouble now! Har-na-na, shar-na-na, she-mina, prom-don-dey, aaayyy! (the sound of her singing).

"South Park" season pass message.....seriously?!

Because I have a Season 14 pass to "South Park" on iTunes, I received the following message from the iTunes Music Store last night:

"Thank you for purchasing a Season Pass for South Park, Season 14. Episodes "200" and "201" are currently not available for download. We do not know if Comedy Central will make these episodes available at a later date. We appreciate your understanding and have issued two free video credits to your account."

200 and 201 are the now controversial Muhammad episodes.

O.K. firstly, I really appreciate that they gave me two video credits. Secondly, two weeks ago when Episode 200 became available, it actually downloaded automatically (standard function when you open the application). So I'm happy about that as well. Thank you, iTunes!

However, my chain is jerked further that this whole Muhammad thing has now caused my purchase to be diverted. MUHAMMAD ALMIGHTY!!! Just give me my damned episode! How am I going to see what happens in the end! Where's my attorney!!! Seriously, it makes me wonder if this two part episode will actually be treated like Disney's "Song of the South"; buried forever because it's SOOO un-PC.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Let the countdown BEGIN!

The end of July: Comic-Con. The end of April: where we are right now. Calendar time: A little less than three months to go. Do the math!

"Eli" spot changes come in

As I was starting to think this would be a regular day and I'd probably leave around 7pm, Chris stopped by my edit bay to tell me notes had finally come back from Warner Bros. for the "Book of Eli" spots. Four of us cut this series of broadcast trailers, but it was up to me to tackle the changes needed. So with dinner ordered (on them), I dove into cutting. Finished up around 9:30pm and am home at last to get a few things done around the house, making sure to relax and find my way to bed much earlier than last night (or should I say this morning...2am). Tomorrow it's back on the Warner Bros. game sizzle reel.

Happy Hour recall

Call came in yesterday from Chris that they wanted to start me on a new project, a sizzle reel for several Warner Bros. video games. So I am here now beginning to work on that, still waiting to hear word back about the "Lottery Ticket", "Splice", and "Book of Eli" spots. From what I understand they're in the process of going to test now.

Happily, this new project will take me into the end of next week and will expand my paycheck this Friday and the next one on May 15th. Hopefully after this I'll be moving into working on the network upfronts, but still waiting on confirmation of that.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Happy Hour update

By the time last Friday rolled around I'd completed one broadcast spot for the theatrical release of "Lottery Ticket", two for the theatrical release of "Splice", and three for "The Book of Eli" DVD release. At that point we were still waiting word back from Warner Bros. with notes and changes.

Being that there was nothing for me to do, Chris said I was pretty much done until sometime this week probably. He said to give him a call on Monday to check in, and when I did he informed me that they'd more than likely need me back at Happy Hour on Wednesday. However, a call today will confirm the certainty of that. Also, he talked about me working on the CBS upfronts that would be starting in May. But when CBS marketing exec Ron Scalera died suddenly last week, that became in jeopardy. He'd been working on a deal with Happy Hour to do the upfronts, which from what I understand is in the hands of his successor now to make a decision on. There's also the ABC upfronts on the plate which Chris also wants me to tackle. He hasn't been able to give me a start time yet and has to look at the schedule.

In the meantime, I'm continuing to compile that list of post house contacts to send a link of my pro website to. As well as getting some things done around my apartment and thinking financially about how Comic-Con is now three months away. I'm sure everything will work out with faith and concentration on what I need to do to keep bringing the paychecks in.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

iPhone...AT LAST!!!

YES!! The time has come! Early this week I'll be ordering my very own 16GB black model iPhone! This is truly exciting and historic for me. There's so much functionality and dozens of applications I can't wait to try out, download, and play with. My Mac Whore status is about to do a major trade-up!

"Back To The Future" 25th Anniversary / Trilogy screening!

Next Saturday night, I'm going BACK TO THE FUTURE!!!

The Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood is hosting the complete "Back To The Future" Trilogy on May 1st and I have tickets! I say that because after dragging my heals a bit on picking those tickets up, I finally went onto Fandango to find that the screening had been sold out. WHAT?! I started kicking myself that I hadn't done anything sooner when suddenly, just on a whim about a half hour later, I tried the site one more time and discovered that I could absolutely buy tickets! Either it was a glitch or seating was topped out and I managed to slip buy somehow.

At any rate....YAAAYYYY!!! This will most likely be THE 25th anniversary screening of the first movie and event to celebrate the trilogy in general. I expect to see several people dressed as Doc Brown and Marty McFly, as well as a string of DeLoreans parked in front of the theatre. Showtime is 5pm.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

"Kick-Ass" review: "Hey, there's a dude dressed like a superhero out front fighting a bunch of guys! It's fucking AWESOME!!"

And yes, "Kick-Ass" is AWESOME! The first thing I have to say is...I LOVED HIT GIRL!!! She practically steals the movie! Check out my full review to your right. And you know there's going to be lots of ensemble "Kick-Ass" costumes at Comic-Con this year. Speaking of which...3 MONTHS TO GO!!! Set you bank account dials to 'save money'!

Thursday, April 22, 2010


I'm going to begin this post with my own version of a classic scene from "Born on the Forth of July" starring Tom Cruise:

Me: These Islamic Extremists say that it's a sin if you show the Prophet Muhammad on "South Park".
Islamic Extremists: Don't say Mohammad on "South Park"!
Islamic Extremists: STOP!!!

"When Religion Goes Bad!"...THAT'S what they should call this whole thing! Radical Extremists have threatened violence if "South Park" creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker don't stop showing their god Muhammad in the most recent episode. Or now, even saying his name!! For part two of the 14th season's now controversial episodes, Comedy Central has decided that any image of Muhammad should be censored and that the name 'Prophet Muhammad' can't even be uttered!

I wrote this on Facebook and I'll write it here: I LOVE "South Park"!! But as far as the rest of the world goes....IT'S....A....CARTOON! GET THE FUCK OVER IT!!!!!! And I wish Comedy Central would grow some balls, please!

I severely hope Matt and Trey have a field day with these guys in some future episode. The point that everyone is missing is that these guys don't write this show as a complete and utter slam. What they're trying to show us is how ridiculous people, politics, celebrity, and yes even man's perversion of religion can be! Maybe if these extremist assholes paid a little more attention they might have weaned that from the show.

I personally think it's a slow terrorist week and they have to come up with something juicy. Kind of like when news organizations focus their full attention and resources on a cat trapped in a tree when nothing else big is going on in the world. Check out the full article here at the Hollywood Reporter site.

On a final note, I love the fact that Muhammad had actually been at the beginning of every "South Park" for an entire season! Check out this article pointing him out in the OPENING CREDITS! HA-HA-HA! Take that, extremists!


Monday, April 19, 2010

My milestone birthday weekend photos are now online

Check out this set of photos (link near the very end of this post) from two weeks ago and a birthday trip from Southern to Northern California that included stopping at several movie locations, a stay at a wonderful ocean side hotel, going to a drive-in movie for the first time in years, seeing beautiful Central California landscapes of mountains, green pastures, and hundreds of energy windmills dotting the hills for miles and miles along the way, plus eating some really yummy foods!

At the beginning of the trip, a short hop over the mountains found us climbing Point Dume at the end of Zuma Beach, the location where Tony Stark's house sits in "Iron Man" and "Iron Man 2". Of course there's only brush and a few trails there because the house for the movie was created completely in the computer. Right below there is small beach where they filmed Charlton Heston finding the Statue of Liberty in "Planet of the Apes". Unfortunately it's somewhat difficult to actually find your way down to walk on that beach. I tried at least two paths; one led to a cliff that went straight down and the other would have taken me through ocean waves pounding on rocks. I hope at some point I might be able to actually walk and kneel in the wet sand where Charlton Heston did more than forty years ago. BTW, where that small patch ends and Zuma Beach actually begins is where they filmed Cornelius, Zira, and Dr. Milo washing up on shore in Taylor's spacecraft at the beginning of "Escape from the Planet of the Apes". Pretty trippy.

Up the coast from there to the tiny town of Guadalupe, we visited the vast oceanside sand dunes where Cecil B. DeMille's 1927 silent version of "The Ten Commandments" was filmed. As the production closed, DeMille, not wanting anyone to have or copy his giant set pieces to use in other films, had workers dig a giant pit to bury the Egyptian city exterior they built for the movie.

Here's an article about the man whose been trying to mount a full-on excavation of the site for almost 30 years. At a nearby historical center about the Dunes, there lay a vast array of smaller artifacts that had been dug up through the years. Really fascinating pieces along with a number of photos from the dig, as well as never before seen photos from the making of the movie. Strangely enough, an auto parts supply store just a block and a half away was also a focal point for people's curiosity about the site. The owner of the store, a really nice gentlemen, had us sign his guest book after talking about one "Ten Commandments" artifact in particular he had in his shop. That guest book had signatures of people from places near and far. Including two from Great Britain who had been there the day before to see the display of history! Pretty amazing. When we finally reached the beach and started walking towards the Dunes, it seemed like no matter how far we walked, we never got any closer. Finally we decided to head back to the car, having braved the wind and the surf for almost an hour.

Staying the night at a really nice hotel right on the ocean in Pizmo Beach, we relaxed and fine tuned our planes for Day 2.

The Towns of Harmony and Cambria were our next stops along the way. Harmony is a town with a population of 18 (so says the sign) and had some amazing history. There was a shop at the end of town that housed a glass blowing production facility with an actual glass blower making wares that the store in front sold. Cambria is a really beautiful town on the ocean where we had lunch and took in some of the downtown area.

Continuing to head up the California coast, we stopped at a movie location I had longed to see in person; the site used for the Cyberdyne Building in "Terminator 2: Judgment Day". Now, twenty years later, it's owned by a company called Mattson. And if you watch this clip of a fellow fan visiting the location, you'll hear one of the employees talk about how they've actually named several rooms after characters from "T2"! I love this!

It was really awesome to stand there in front of the building where Arnold let loose the mini-gun on unsuspecting police and where that giant fireball consumed all of Cyberdyne's records of the first Terminator and it's chip. While we walked around and took pictures, in the car behind us was the "T2" soundtrack cranked on my iPod! The only thing that would made the setting perfect is if we'd been there at night. But being there during the day was pretty amazing!

Finally arriving in Modesto, we anticipated enjoying a hot air balloon festival Sunday afternoon. However, a quick cross referencing of several websites revealed that the event's date had been mis-posted. It'd actually occurred the month before. But hey, no worries! We were having a great time, and the trip home was ahead of us. On the way out of town we saw this guy on a motorcycle wearing an Easter Bunny outfit. Must have been a member of the Biker Bunnies of Modesto! Staying overnight halfway down the coast brought us into Monday and a stop at Anderson's Restaurant. I'd recently discovered the goodness of Anderson's pea soup, and was really looking forward to enjoying a large bowl. Instead, they had a gi-normous bread bowl (pictured) that I consumed most of before calling on a box to bring the rest home for dinner that night! YUM-E!

I had a fantastic and really memorable birthday weekend, and here are the pictures to prove it! You can also go to my photo sets page by clicking the Flickr link near the bottom of the left hand sidebar. Enjoy!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Work today, dinner or a movie tonight

I'm pulling a weekend day to get more work done on the broadcast spot for "Splice". Deadline is end of day Monday, and I'll actually be in pretty good shape by end of today / beginning of Monday. So far response from Warner Bros. about my spot for "Lottery Ticket" and DVD release spot for "The Book of Eli" have been very positive. Chris came by yesterday to let me know I did a fantastic job with both of those.

The beginning of the week will see a second group at the studio looking at the "Ticket" and "Eli" spots, so there still could be some notes. If so, it sounds like they may be lite. This past week has been pretty fast paced, and I've really been loving and appreciating every minute of it. So glad to be back at Happy Hour working on trailers and broadcast spots!

Once these three projects have gone out the door, it's sounding more and more like there may actually be something else over the horizon. Chris mentioned that there are some projects just about to surface which includes the network upfronts due in May. Plus there are some spots for a little ABC series about aliens coming to Earth that they may also need some help with. Don't want to say any more and jinx it. Stay tuned!

Friday, April 16, 2010

HOLY SHIT!!! Harrison Ford Q&A at a screening of "The Empire Strikes Back"!!!

Thanks to Allen for bringing this to my attention!

WOW!!! Harrison Ford will be doing a Q&A during a 30th anniversary screening of "The Empire Strikes Back" at the Arclight May 19, just two days before the actual release date of the film three decades ago! Now comes the bad news.....IT'S ALREADY SOLD OUT! News of this broke early this morning on the LA Times website, and fans took little time to swipe every seat in the auditorium! Click on the picture of Ford to check out the full article. Bill, I'm sure if there were tickets available you might have even made the trip out for this!

In lieu of this, I'm hoping there will be another 30th anniversary screening that us poor schmucks who won't get to see Ford will be able to attend!

Composer Ramin Djawadi replaced for "Iron Man 2"

I was surprised today to learn that music composer Ramin Djawadi was not doing the music for "Iron Man 2", as he had done for the first film (I am NOT going to say '1'!). I really LOVED his score and downloaded it the day after seeing the movie.

So whose his replacement for the second outing? John Debney. John Debney? The same guy who does all of those 'not the original recording' soundtracks?! O.K. so he and Jon Favreau did work on "Zathura" together, and there's an obvious previous connection. Yes, Debney has also composed music for major motion pictures. I'll certainly keep an open mind opening night, and I've heard that he's keeping the same guitar heavy rock feel from Djawadi's original. We'll see...or rather, hear.

Thanks for the advanced heads-up, Arclight!

I've been waiting since the beginning of this month to find out when tickets would be going on sale for "Iron Man 2" in the Dome at the Arclight. This being such a highly anticipated release, it seemed natural that they would release tickets one month out. Nope, nothing. If that's not the case then it's usually two weeks out. So it came as a major shock today to learn that early this morning, on the odd three weeks from the movies premiere, the Arclight put tickets up for regular showings including the midnight show.


Needless to say when I found this out at 11:30 this morning, seven hours later, I was not happy at all! At that point the midnight show seating was so far gone we would have only gotten far side or far back seats. So it was time for a quick backup plan: the Friday night 8:30 show. First evening screening in the Dome on opening night. And like Indiana Jones grabbing his whip as the stone wall was about to slam shut on his arm, I was able to grab two tickets in one of the coveted rows I prefer. Whew!

Tickets happily in hand, I can now go on with my life knowing I'll be able to see Tony Stark's next adventure on opening night, with all the excitement of a full-on fanboy crowd. And that's really what it's all about when movies like this open. Half of the experience is the ebb and flow of the crowd enjoying what's happening on the big screen.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The weekend rundown

Finishing up my first week back at Happy Hour, and it's certainly been a hectic one! Tackling my first cut of a broadcast spot for "Lottery Ticket", switching over in mid-week to work on a new DVD release spot for "The Book of Eli", finally watching the movie "Splice" to begin work on two spots that are due to go before the studio on Monday.

At this point, it's looking very strongly like I'll be working over the weekend. I'm certainly not complaining...bring on these really cool projects and the fatter paychecks please! Dinner with an assistant editor friend and his girlfriend, plus being able to fit in a screening of the much anticipated "Kick-Ass" are also on the slate. Work will dictate whether these events happen during Saturday and Sunday.

And THANK GOD, I now have my first paycheck for these past four days of work! YES!!! Paydays are the 15th and 30th of each month. Looks like I'm going to be good now financially until at least the end of May. That's with the current schedule of projects at Happy Hour.

'Space Paranoids' viral game! Coolness!!!

"Tron" fever is definitely in the forefront of my brain right now! And here is a promo for the release of the classic 'Space Paranoids' from the original film available to online play. The game play is exact, right down to the targeting graphics. How cool is that?! Count me IN!!!

Pardon the dumbass commercial that you have to watch first!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Original "Conquest" ending

Wow! I've never seen this before! Although it was spoken of in the "Behind the Planet of the Apes" documentary, they did not show any footage from this original ending to "Conquest of the Planet of the Apes". I was amazed to learn (through this user on YouTube) that FOX had actually broadcast it with the first finish intact! How this ended up happening is anyone's guess.

The reason why the studio changed the ending was because it depicted the slave apes taking full charge and no prisoners without pause or reflection. They felt this would have been particularly dangerous as the film was released during a lot of racial unrest in this country. The apes plight obviously paralleling the wrongs that blacks felt they were being succumb to by whites in the early 70's. So a second epilogue was written where Roddy McDowell, as Caesar, spoke to the rioting apes about compassion and understanding, urging them to lower their weapons now that they had taken control.

So before all of of the 'PC' rethinking, here is what was originally intended to be released in theaters. Chilling and brutal. Be aware that the user shot this off of a TV screen. However you can clearly see what's happening in the scene.

Everywhere you turn, "Iron Man 2" is in the sky!

Well to be more precise, on just about every overhead digital billboard in LA. I took an alternate route to work today instead of the mostly freeway journey to encounter a sea of "Iron Man 2" advertising along the way. Iron Man and War Machine ready for battle with a giant '2' in the middle. A little over three weeks to go and the excitement mounts!

Oh, and yeah....where are the tickets? Usually for something this big, tickets would go on sale at least a month out. Or some type of indication as to when they would. Still nothing on the Arclight site. Strange.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

AT LAST!!! Back to work with Happy Hour Creative!!

Received a call from Chris at Happy Hour yesterday morning! Asked if I could come in as soon as possible to work on a couple of major studio release trailers and broadcast spots. The battery on my phone had died the night before and I didn't have the charger with me. Chris' call came in a little after 10am and I didn't hear it until two hours later. No worries though! He wanted to see if I could start no later than Wednesday, with the option of working on another project before that if I could come in within a few hours. So I quickly got myself in gear to head to Culver City.

I'll be working there for at least two weeks on two projects in all. The first is an urban comedy / "Barber Shop" type movie called "Lottery Ticket" starring Bow Wow and Ice Cube. The second, this year's Sundance Film Festival breakout horror / sci-fi film "Splice" starring Adrian Brody. Both of these are Warner Bros. releases. Chris' also mentioned the possibility of my working on spots for the DVD release of "The Book of Eli", since I definitely know that territory. I've been asked if I was interested in another project beyond these, but I don't want to mention it right now in fear of jinxing my involvement. As soon as I know more and can talk about it, I will.

It was SOOO good to be driving down the 405, iPod blarin', drinking in the actual sensation of heading to work! I'm gonna savor every moment of this.

My first professional website is now online!

On April 3 (my birthday), Apple premiered the new iPad in stores nationwide. Now, on the heels of this groundbreaking device, comes my own magical and revolutionary new tool.

Yes, True Believers, there's a reason why I haven't posted on the blog for two and a half weeks. Announcing the launch of my first professional website, which arrives after more than a month of planning, designing, and securing a site to host clips from the reel to promote my work.

Because I want to keep a separation of church and state, I won't be posting the website address here. Instead, I'll be posting the link on my Facebook page and e-mailing it to everyone else who also frequents the blog (you know who you are!). So expect that message shortly. Important note: Internet Explorer is the only server that does NOT support the new site.

Transposing the design of my recently updated DVD reel was the primary vision. But there were a few challenges when it came to utilizing HTML code. Since my experience lie with working on this blog for the last six years, I decided to take the template from here and conform it to the parameters I wanted and needed for the new website. Creating some major changes, especially one specific and important addition, took days of trial and error. But in the end, after research helped only so far, I took a stab at something radical and the design I envisioned finally happened.

I was certainly aware that people working in the industry were switching from the norm of physical media mailed to potential employers, to creating an all encompassing website showcasing their resume and samples of their work. In fact, during the last round of phone calls to those thirty four post houses confirming the correct contact person to send my reels and resumes to, I was asked more times than not if I wanted an e-mail address to send my website link. I didn't have one yet, but that's the thing that kicked me into gear that it was finally time to take on creating my own professional home on the web.

The cost of printing, packaging, and mailing thirty four reels and resumes two months ago cost around $200. Now, the really awesome thing about having my own website is that I won't have to buy DVD-Rs, resume paper, envelopes, labels, and mailing supplies. Not to mention the time and effort it took to put all of that together, especially when I had something new to add to the reel. Now, everything and anything I need to do to update my marketing tools can be done once, for basically no money, then forwarded via e-mail to any number of post houses I choose. From this point on, except for special circumstances, there will no longer be any need to send out a copy of my reel on DVD. The whole concept is pretty exciting actually! It's almost like the iTunes Store. The artists and record companies only have to create one set of files that millions of people can download, as opposed to burning, printing, and packaging millions of CDs and jewel cases to sell in stores or online.

Now it's on to the next major task.

Over the past week I've been compiling a list of e-mails from every creative post house in the Los Angeles area. At this point, with the economy slowly but surely getting better, I need to take whatever I can get my hands on. Meaning everything from commercials to webispodes to reality TV to entertainment news to industrial projects. Anything that will generate a paycheck while the film industry gets back on it's feet.