Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Politics

Time for a bit of seriousness. Let's chat politics, and in particular, taxes.

One of the biggest problems with our government is how out of control the taxes are. You may be one of these people I read about who thinks that taxes AREN'T out of control. If you DO think that, you are wrong.

I've done the math. If you think I'm wrong you need to keep a log for 1 month and every time you pay for something and pay a TAX you need to write it down. Then add that to how much taxes were withheld from your paycheck that month and figure out the percentage. It's probably around 40%.

Think I'm exaggerating? Do it. Sales Tax. Every little tax that is in your 10 page phone bill(your cel phone too). Property tax. Make sure you count the taxes in every gallon of gasoline you get(read the fine print on the pump and you'll see how much goes to taxes). ANY tax. Add it all in.

And be aware that there are a lot of taxes YOU CAN'T EVEN SEE. I kid you not.

Once you've figured out I'm right, come back here.

So, I'll try to be brief. Why is it out of control? Mainly because here's how the government works:

They collect money from all of our earnings. Then they figure out how to spend it. Most of the time they go over--hence the deficit. They figure--hey, we can always raise taxes to make up the difference.

How should the government work?

They collect money from all of our SPENDINGS. Then they figure out how to spend it. THEY CANNOT GO OVER. WHAT THEY HAVE IS WHAT THEY SPEND.

The way our government works, you are penalized for making money. What's the incentive to work? Instead, you should only be taxed on your spending.

Wanna spend a very worthwhile $17? Buy this book and READ IT.
Fair Tax Book

Then go here Fairtax Site and sign up for their updates. Stop saying nothing can be done. It's gained a LOT of momentum this year. If you don't buy the book, at least sign up for the updates. They only email maybe once or twice a month.

This is my public service announcement. I'll try to entertain you more next time.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Interesting quote...

I just read--it's from one of the writers of 24 I think.

"I've never killed anyone, but my instincts as a person and a playwright -- and the best books I've read about soldiers or cops or people whose jobs bring them into violent physical conflict -- suggest that people in general don't kill without feeling torn up about it. Violence exacts a psychic toll, unless you're a sociopath, and who wants to watch a movie about sociopaths?"

Uh...I dunno, but HH did pretty well, not to mention the very successful American Psycho that spawned a sequel. So I guess the answer is...a lot of people want to watch a movie about sociopaths.

Reviews are arriving...

For FOC--the LG cut. Next week's Video Business reviews it--I gotta admit, I was terrified they were going to trash the flick. They've got some good and some bad to say, but they end their review with: "Influenced by such directors as John Carpenter, Wes Craven and Tobe Hooper, [my last name] knows horror movies. Though no classic, [FOC] is an impressive effort from a talented newcomer."

If you want to read the full reviews, it's at the link below. You'll have to click forward a couple of pages.(page 14 to be exact)

VB Weekly

Next is Netflix's in-house review. It's a small blurb that ends with: "Written and directed by [my full name], this creepy follow-up to his horror flick [HH] goes a long way toward inspiring coulrophobia in all of us."

So far so good. I'm sure the other shoe's about to drop...

Friday, January 27, 2006

FOC Update

Well, at last count LG has had 1 TWO-PAGE SPREAD, 5 FULL PAGE ads, 1 half page ad, and 3 miniature ads in Video Business Weekly.

So I figured the ads would be trickling off. This week's VB just came out and there's another 2 page spread. It's crazy, the amount of money they're throwing behind this.

And they're now listing the extras--the "Making Of" and the Out-takes are definitely on there. My commentary is not mentioned, so I don't know if they scrapped it or not. Honestly, I wouldn't be that surprised since it wasn't all that great.

I have to think that the deleted scenes and the original ending are not on there, which is gonna be a bummer for the actors whose scenes were cut. The whole thing leads me to believe LG is using a single layer disc(which would hold about 4 hours of video, even less with the low compression they will probably have the movie playing at).

I wish they'd taken their advertising money and spent it on the dual layer, which would have held 9 hours and ALL of the extras. I mean, I spent a LOT of time on those extras, and to know they've blown them off...sucky sucky.

(but this just shows that perfectionist mentality I'm cursed with--it's like: Gee, your no-budget movie was picked up by one of the biggest horror distributors in the world and they're pushing the hell out of it; it's going to be in every dvd store in the country; and all I can do is complain)

Poor me. :)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Mail


I got a pretty cool postcard the other day. It's a picture of(from right to left) me, Mark L. and Rick G. It was taken the night we finished the martini shot on FOC(the "martini" is the final shot of a movie)--we went out to Jillian's and they kicked us out, so we went over to Friday's until they closed.

Anyway, we were NOT painted up. That was done courtesy of a guy named Rob via Photoshop. But it's so good my wife actually asked me when that was taken because she didn't remember me getting painted up.

Pretty cool, huh?

Monday, January 23, 2006

Circa 600 and counting

Somewhere over 600 headshots and it doesn't appear to be stopping. Not bad for a week. Got some interesting ones, got some total losers, got some total losers who think they shouldn't have to audition to get a part.

While I'm going through the emails and headshots I've been jamming through some of my TV dvd sets. I finished Dream On: Season 1 and 2(and I'm kinda bummed that the other seasons aren't available).

Now I'm on Alien Nation: The Complete Series, which was one of my favorites way back when(1990 if you must know). I've gotten through about 7 episodes--it's still a great show, but the compression on some of the episodes is terrible.

I can't complain though--it's better than if I'd bought a bootleg set of the episodes(which I did for Quantum Leap before they started actually coming out)

Who knows, by the time I'm done casting I may have polished off Alien Nation and gotten through Nip/Tuck Season 1(which people keep telling me to watch).

Friday, January 20, 2006

4 Questions...

No, nobody "tagged" me. I've just been very busy. So here's the "4 questions" thing to buy myself some time.

4 Things About Me

Four Jobs You've Had In Your Life:

1. Damon's Ribs Bus Boy
2. Chi Chi's Bus Boy
3. Ladies' Shoe Salesman
4. Bodyguard(Have I told you that story?)

Four Movies You'd Watch Over and Over

1. Aliens
2. Tremors
3. Face/Off
4. Back To The Future

Four Places You Have Lived

1. Glen Burnie, MD
2. Towson, MD
3. Arnold, MD
4. Pasadena, MD

Four TV Shows You Love to Watch

1. House
2. Cops
3. Arrested Development
4. Battlestar Galactica

Four Places You've Been On Vacation

1. Las Vegas, NV
2. Bahamas
3. Disneyworld, FL
4. Philly

Four Websites You Visit Daily
1. Bloody-disgusting.com
2. google.com
3. too many blogs to list
4. www.imdb.com(Ok, actually I visit imdbpro.com but unless you're a member you can't get there)

Four of Your Favorite Foods

1. Sbarro's Reheated Pizza
2. Hamburgers W Heavy Pickles
3. Toasted Almond Ice Cream
4. Popcorn

Four Places You'd Rather Be Right Now

1. The Movies
2. Bahamas
3. Texas
4. Las Vegas

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Kleptomania

So if you've been reading this blog then you know I was a sociopath back in my younger days. You might not know, though, that I was also a kleptomaniac. It started early--In third grade I stole a hermit crab from my elementary school's library. (I was later caught and forced to return the crab, but clearly I didn't learn any lessons)

After that I'd steal pretty much anything--candy and comics from the 7-eleven(frequently during the break between Sunday school and church) and books from the bookstore(I'd wear a coat and put a book under each arm, and then simply walk out, using pressure from my arms to keep them in the armpit)

Every job I worked until I owned my own store-they were all victims to my white collar crime.

My favorite was Hecht's. I sold ladies' shoes there(I have 100 blogs-worth of stories right there). And I stole literally thousands of dollars from them.

First, I had my friends come in with their girlfriends, and I would just give them hundreds of dollars worth of shoes. I just threw them in a bag, had them walk in and sign a blank piece of paper(as if they had picked them out, paid for them, and come back to sign the slip)--I can't tell you how many free Timberland boots I gave out.

Next I would return shoes that hadn't actually been sold--I'd just run the gun over the UPC of a box of shoes behind the counter, then make up a driver's license number for the fake person returning the shoes, then print out a credit reciept. It was only good for merchandise, so I'd take my girlfriend to the Hecht's in the next town to get hundreds of dollars of free stuff.

If I wanted cash I'd have to use the register tape to look up a previous sale and use the transaction number for the return. Then I'd get a cash return slip which I'd take to a different Hecht's to cash in for the greenbacks.

And no one ever caught me. No one ever suspected. I dealt with the managers(my brother was actually a manager in the men's department) and not a one of them suspected.

If I ever had another job it would be one of those security experts who goes in to figure out a company's weaknesses--I'm very good at finding ways around any system. I'm like...an evil problem solver.

Of course, I'm much more ethical now. Just--if you see me coming--keep a good eye on your valuables...

Monday, January 16, 2006

Tough Choice

Wow, this blog could simply become "Funny Casting Submissions". These are two dandies that showed up in the past week.

This one came from a guy whose pictures depict a muscle bound guy, one of them he's taking the picture of himself in the mirror with no shirt.

"I am a very confident young man,with star qualities,will be the next Tom Cruise,or Brad Pitt,I have a passion to be one of the best actors in Hollywood,and will do anything to become that.

Movies:1.(lead,independent film ,Atonement) 2.(lead,indepedent film,A CUBAN AND A BRAZILIAN) 3.(Lead,independent film,WAR OF SPACE)

Plays:Evita

Commercials:Burger king "

----

This other one is self explanatory.

" My name is XXXX XXXXXXX, I am 5'6" 120lbs Blond hair blue eyes I am interested
My experience is not of a nature most casting directors would understand as traditional experience that being in front of camera and such, My experience is much more real life type of experience being a transgender person I am literally acting every single day, all day, for over 15 years and I must say it is something I am probably one of the best in the world at and also very proud of. One cannot go to acting school or be in, even a thousand films and gain this type of experience, you have to be born with this ability to be able to do it and do it well. Alot like me. After you review my pictures and meet me and compare to anyone you have ever met
or seen, I believe you will fully understand what I am talking about. For all true transgender ladies, our lives are all about drama. You cannot make it, you can't even buy it, you have to be born with it. Who else can do this and do it well? I dont know anyone personally (other than myself), I have heard of some, but less than a handful in the entire world.

Others try to duplicate it, but usually because of size, they really do not do a good job of it. I am super confident and super creative. If you are looking for a true transgender woman, you no longer need to hire natural girls or male actors to fill
the role. Pick me, and I also probably know several other girls, that would be interested, I know litterally tens of thousands of people in the transgender community and I can be very helpful.
Thank you"

And let me tell you...I wish I could show you the pictures. Just imagine your dad in a tight dress. This isn't one of those trannies where you might be fooled.

Ugh.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

My favorite casting submission so far...

As I said, we're casting for FOC2 now and we've gotten a lot of submissions. This one cracked me up the most so far(name removed):

Hello,

I am coming from Slovenia (Europe).I was never acting before (some hot photos-one on newspaper cover) but than I stopped.But all friends are telling me (all the time) that I should be an actor, so now maybe I want to give a shot. I am working as Account manager now and dont have problems to convince people in something (to buy,people are "following" me, listen to me) I am successful in 95% to do it my way. Now I want to know-How does this work? Do I have a chance? What do an agency must know about me? Etc.

Thank you ,

Br,

From the USA TODAY,

To be filed under "Reasons You Can't Tell Me People Aren't Stupid". The bolds are mine, as well as the typos.

MUMMIFIED BODY FOUND IN FRONT OF TV

The body of a Cincinatti woman sat in a chair in front of a TV for 2 and half years because Johannas Pope told her caregiver that she didn't want to be buried, a coroner said.

"Don't bury me. I'm coming back," Hamilton Count Coroner O'Dell Owens said in describing Pope's wishes. Owens did not identify the caregiver, who apparently lived in the home with Pope and Pope's daughter and 3 year-old granddaughter. Owen said Pope, 61, died in August 2003 and that the caregiver decided to keep the body upstairs while life went on downstairs "out of loyalty, friendship and love of her friend."

An air conditioner left running upstairs had allowed the body to slowly mummify, Owens said. Police went to the house last week after a relative asked them to inquire.

---

So, I'm sure the 3 year old is gonna grow up perfectly normal. Right?

And I for one just think they didn't give her enough time to come back. It's gotta take more than 3 years to come back to life, don't you think?

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Something's wrong with me...

You wimmenfolk with delicate sensibilities feel free to pretend there's no post today.

Okay, are they all gone?

Well then...any of you belong to Netflix? You know how you get to rate movies and the more you rate the more it asks you to rate? There's something crazy addictive about it. I think I've rated like 5000 movies on there.

In that spirit, I stumbled on this site from Fleshbot(link to the right) and I find it oddly addictive. I find I have to rate them all. And I warn any of you wimmenfolk who haven't gone away...NUDITY AND SEXUAL PICTURES...so don't click if that sort of thing offends you.

Rate The Uncensored

For you guys, enjoy.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Know It Alls

"People who think they know everything
annoy those of us who do"

--T-Shirt I own

I'm at Burger King today--a pretty regular thing. I say what I usually say: "I want the #10, large size--but hit 'heavy pickles' like 4 times".

The woman behind the counter says "That won't do anything."

I say, "Yes it will. It will show up as heavy pickles four times."

She replies, "No it won't."

She said it with such authority that if you didn't know better you would HAVE to assume she knew what she was talking about.

But I know better. I put on my half smile, still trying to be friendly about the whole thing(and I'm completely aware of the three people behind me in line), and say: "I'll bet you a million dollars it works. I eat at Burger King three or four times a week and I can tell you exactly how much this meal's gonna cost."

She grimaces at me, then reluctantly punches the heavy pickles four times and large- sizes it. Then she says, "Okay, how much is it?"

"Four sixty one" I say.

She hits the TOTAL button and lo and behold it says "$4.61". I try not grin or do the Ace Ventura YES YES YES YES as I'm grinding my pelvis at her. I just take my ticket and my cup and move on down the line.

Know It Alls really do bother me.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

That's interesting...

So the wife hits me with this the other night.

"I think for my birthday this year I want implants."

I do some fast thinking. I'm sure the correct response here is: "Honey, you don't need implants--your breasts are great as is."

I never give the correct response. I'm hard wired that way.

But I'm of two minds. I LOVE big fake boobs. I don't know what it is, but when I see them it's like I'm being hypnotized by them. It's actually hard to take my eyes off of them.

On the other hand, it's not like my wife is flat. She's a 36C, so she's decent size. I don't think she's looking to go balloon-size. I dunno. Not like I wanna talk her OUT of getting implants.

But I've also seen some show where they showed the surgery and it is BRUTAL. Incredibly painful. And she's talking about doing it during her weeks off while I shoot FOC2.

I think she's under the impression she's gonna get the implants and then have no problem watching the kid the next day.

I think, once you get the surgery, you pretty much hurt to move for like a month.

So we left it up in the air. We'll see, I guess.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Erratic Updates...

Sorry for the erratic updates. The first casting notices went out for FOC2 and I've been weeding through hundreds of emails--all this and the REAL ads in Backstage magazine haven't even gone out yet. Ugh.

Good to see that there are still as many stupid actors who can't follow directions as there used to be. Haven't yet gotten any of the naked/scantily-clad pictures like I got on the first FOC.

I'll leave you with a few quotes I'd saved and recovered in a file. I can't testify to the veracity of the actual quotes though.

Sir Winston Churchill
"Don't talk to me about naval tradition. It's nothing but rum, sodomy and the lash."

"I am prepared to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter."

"Although prepared for martyrdom, I preferred that it be postponed."

"My fellow Americans, I am pleased to tell you I just signed legislation which outlaws Russia forever. The bombing begins in five minutes." Ronald Reagan, Said during a radio microphone test, 1984

"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts." Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955) (attributed)

"Never give a party if you will be the most interesting person there." Mickey Friedman

"The nice thing about standards is that there are so many of them to choose from." Andrew S. Tanenbaum


"Don't think there are no crocodiles because the water is calm." Malayan Proverb

"Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped."
Elbert Hubbard (1856 - 1915)

"Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come." Matt Groening, "Life in Hell"

"Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority, it is time to reform." Mark Twain (1835 - 1910)

"Faith is a cop-out. If the only way you can accept an assertion is by faith, then you are conceding that it can’t be taken on its own merits." Dan Barker, "Losing Faith in Faith"

Monday, January 02, 2006

Tidbits...

Today is the start of one of the most important things a director does--the shooting script. This is where I break down the script into its every shot. Where I(theoretically) figure out how to shoot all the nifty stuff I've written.

Fun Fun Fun.

---

On another note, if you know where the MP message board is, go check under the FOC section to see the promo video we used to get investors for the film. It won't stay up for too long though--I used copyrighted music from Aliens and Signs.

---

Seen the trailers for the Underworld sequel? What's with bringing back Bill Nighy as the big bad-ass vampire guy? If you don't know, he's the rock singer in Love, Actually and also the step-dad in Shaun of The Dead.

The guy is funny to look at. He really doesn't have to do anything to make you laugh. So putting him in a serious, bad ass kind of role just isn't going to work. It didn't work in the first film and I don't think it's gonna work now.

---

I swear to God I could watch Cops 24 hours a day. Even repeats. It never gets old. I hear Spielberg has the same obsession...

---

I am finding some of the funniest stuff on my destroyed hard drive. Stuff I didn't remember saving. Stuff I didn't remember writing. I can't believe I didn't back it all up, but I guess I never realized how much of this stuff I'd saved.

More later!

The Answers...

1 - Army of Darkness, though I think he did say groovy in Evil Dead 2--but this is definitely from AOD
2 - The Terminator
3 - Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. Sorry, no half points if you put Star Wars! :)
4 - Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Sorry, no half points for Star Trek! :)
5 - Robocop
6 - Fletch - How can you not remember that?
7 - Spaceballs
8 - Princess Bride
9 - Ace Ventura Pet Detective
14 - Jurassic Park
10 - From Dusk Til Dawn
11 - In The Line of Fire
12 - Seven
13 - Scream

Nice going(some of you!). Better luck on the next one.