Friday, July 31, 2015

Looking at HH

Continuing to work on the book. There's some temporary picture placeholders that I'm going to have to go license to put them in, but I'm flat broke right now. That's no fun.

So I decided to take a look at my original HH files since I'm going to have to color correct and up-res them if I'm going to Blu-Ray them. (I'll be submitting my own version to Amazon, no up-res'd but color corrected)

Here's a quick preliminary look at a few things. This is how it looks only up-res'd. (btw--doing my own up-res'ing and sharpening appears to look better than the MB Instant HD for some reason. Not a knock on them--I just don't know why it's that way. I tweaked the settings a few ways, but it doesn't seem to change it much.

This is the way it looks with nothing done to it other than up-res'ing:


This is the way it looks with up-res'ing and color correction/level adjustments:

And this is the way it looks with all that plus a de-noiser set to the default. Obviously it's too strong here, but it is interesting to look at.


Not sure whether I'll do any denoising or maybe some light stuff at the grainiest parts. Just tinkering right now.

But the color correction definitely makes some big differences. I'll show you some of the other scenes where you can really see the difference.

Anyway, can't make my own dvd/blu for a couple of months though as the contract DOES have a sell-off clause so the company can get rid of their inventory.

I also had another thought to maybe re-transfer from the BetaSP originals. Not like I'm gonna re-edit the whole thing, but maybe take another look at some of the grainier pieces and work on them. It's not that expensive to get 'em digitized now.

Also I just re-made the opening title quote. Really wish I had the original After Effects file for the end credits so I could re-render them. I don't want to have to recreate them from scratch, but they really look like dogshit when blown up...
Okay, here's a comparison of a particularly noisy/crappy looking shot. The left half is corrected with mild de-noising. The right half is uncorrected.


Not sure why the CC suite took out the garbage mattes. I used them quite a bit. I had to double check to see, but yeah, they're gone. Apparently there are so many masking options inside each effect they didn't think it necessary.

BTW: You're going to have to put those at 720P to get a real idea of what they look like.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

3:30am Blog Posting

Yes, it's 3:30am.

For some reason I've decided to start watching The Lost Boys. I thought, "Hey, why not make yourself a fucking Toasted Almond?"

So I did. I don't care.

I'd chalk it up to the fact that the wife is coming home with the kid tomorrow, but hell, I do this shit when she's home too.

Been working on the book. Finally getting close to a point I can see the end. I've sent some images and notes to the cover guy so he can start working on it. I'm giving him a lot of leeway since I don't have a definite idea of what I'm looking for.

I think I gotta turn it in roughly September 1st to ensure it'll go up on Amazon toward the end of Sept/early October for the season.

----

Did I tell you that I come home from this shitty con weekend to find my wife had turned the AC off while we were both gone? The interior of the house was 85 degrees.

I turned on the AC. When I woke up at noon the next day, my basement near the unit was SOAKED. I thought the hot water heater had blown.

Turns out the AC unit was leaking bad. No idea why.

Spent two days fixing it. Took the whole bitch apart and figured it out myself. My dad probably could have solved it in like an hour.

---

Hey, got this email tonight. Good news:
Hi Kevin,

Thank you for your message. Please be advised that we are in the process of removing the following title from YOUKNOWWHERE:

Hunting Humans ASIN: the number

It typically takes 2-3 days for a listing to disappear once it has been removed from our catalog. We trust this will bring this matter to a close.

Reps Name

Copyright/Trademark Agent
YOUKNOWWHERE

So once I color correct my original master, fix a few things I never fixed, I'll resubmit it.

------

On the not great news, they want me to fly back to L.A. to shoot a video because the collection we're auctioning off at the end of the year isn't coming out here at all. So the only way they're going to get a video is to fly me out to the house August 12-14th and shoot it.

That's also my anniversary. I'm sure the wife will be thrilled.

But I could use the money. So I guess I'm gonna do it.

Okay, enough blogging. Back to the Lost Boys and my book! (and my toasted almond)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Con Wrap Up Part 2

Me, O'Brocki and Zig
SATURDAY

I wake up. I am tired. Dead tired. Worse yet, I feel like I have the worst hangover even though I wasn't very drunk the night before.

My stomach KILLS. My head/neck is so achy I would just like to die.

I guzzle some water. Head down to the dealer's room. It's EMPTY. Not even other dealers. Turns out we were told the wrong time--room doesn't open until 10am so we could have gotten an extra hour sleep.

Eventually the room opens. It's moderately busy, but I'm not getting better. I have to run to the room to get sick like five times. Finally at one point I go back and lay down for an hour. I feel a little better as I come back, but there was a point I was thinking about finding the nearest doctor to go to.

Photobombing Like A Boss


It takes until about 5pm for me to feel back to maybe 90%. The day's total is pretty weak. It's clear I'm going to lose money this weekend at a point I really can't afford it, since I'm trying to get the money together to shoot this wrap-around for T-tory.

Sad part is that I should have just taken a bunch of my T-shirts. Every person who saw them wanted to know where I'd gotten it. I should have bought a bunch wholesale and sold them at the show...


The dinner crew

We hit dinner at a local joint with Dom/Brett and a friend from home, Ami, and her friend Amanda. Dinner's not bad, and I'd picked a place that wasn't too expensive. Best part was we had zero wait time because I called in a reservation, but we got there early and they seated the 8 of us at a 12-top table. Didn't realize until the 12 people came in that we'd been given the wrong table. Those people glared at us for a while.

After dinner we head back to the hotel and I've said no to the drinking. I grab a pot brownie instead, and go to the lobby. We see my buddy Rob in his costume--he's won first place and the costume is fucking badass. I have seen his costumes and they're always cool, but this was fucking insane. One of the dudes from Face Off took a bunch of pictures of it from every angle, and he's a WORKING FX guy...

Rob's winning costume--Steampunk Tin Man

Hung out, chit chatted. Watched Tiny Lister have a melt down when an eight year old girl was wandering around at like 12:30am in the lobby. Her mom came down, and Tiny berated her for letting her kid wander around. He was pretty loud and vocal all weekend. Seemed like a handful.

Then at like 1am the fire alarm went off. Everybody had to go out front. They even got Piper Laurie out of bed, into her wheelchair, and out front. Fire department came out, said it was a disabled alarm in the hallway, and told us all to go back in.

And then people were trying to take pictures of Piper Laurie in her wheelchair at the elevator. No fucking decency.

Went to bed about 3am. Don't have to be down to dealer's room until about 11am.

Fucking Zig snores again, waking me up at interims. I throw a pillow at him a couple of times and tell him to roll onto his side. Don't get much uninterrupted sleep.

SUNDAY

Not much worth talking about today. Talked to Larry Drake at Dom's table for a while. He's a very nice, very cool guy. He told me how people came to his room when the fire alarm sounded and told him to leave his room. He said he yelled "NO!" and slammed the door(he's like 6'5), and waited to see if they'd knock again. They muttered "False alarm" and walked away.

He laughed about it, and it was a pretty funny story.

Show didn't end until 4pm, but we were packing and loaded up by like 3:15. Gone. Got a slurpee post-haste at the nearby 7-11 and got on the road. Hit a Burger King like an hour later and thought, at least the worst was over.

We hit fucking traffic right after. The trip to my house, which shouldn't take longer than 3hrs and 15 minutes, took me nearly 6 hours. The last hour or so of my driving was homicidal. I was fucking furious. People driving whatever speed they wanted to in the passing lane were having me right up their ass, or driving by them yelling out my window, or pulling in front of them and slowing down to show them what it was like when the douchebag in front of them goes whatever speed they'd like.

I got home, took some necessary shit out of my car, and checked my emails.

So tired I fell asleep at midnight and got up at noon.

Will not do that show ever again. Regardless of the guests.

Monday, July 27, 2015

CON WRAP UP Part 1

There's no reason for this gif to be here.

Thursday.

Going down a day early so we can skip the traffic and set up the table.

I get up, load the car, hit Burger King and head out to get Zig. He jumps in the car, I tell the GPS to get us on the road, and in about 30 minutes my GPS is giving me weird directions. It's having me do odd U-Turns and whatnot. We call Stewie and he says to get on 301.

So we actually end up back near Zig's to get back on 301. We've lost a goddamn hour already.

I should have realized that my GPS was trying to warn me. It was telling me, "No--you do not want to do this, trust me."

But I didn't listen.

We get on the road and make the trip. It wasn't too bad. We got there right about set-up time, so we set up the table. Easy stuff.

Not a lot to do on night one(a couple of author seminars and stuff), so we just wandered around and chit chatted with people. Cut to:

That night. We were just going to crash with Stewie in his room. He's got a king-sized bed. I figured there'd be a couch or a nice chair and one of us would sleep on the floor. But there was no nice chair, no couch at all.

Zig crashes on a bed made of pillows. He falls asleep. I'm a night owl so I don't. But even as 3am rolls around and I start to get tired, there is THE SNORING(the title of my new horror movie). I can't sleep with snoring.

I roll out, head to the lobby. I tell the front desk people, "Hey, I'm checking in tomorrow so I was just going to crash in my buddy's room tonight. But he took a lady back to his room and I'm not sure how long that's gonna be. If I check in now, can you pro-rate me a room or something?"

They say no. I'll never understand that. They have empty rooms. They'd rather get zero dollars than $80-$100 that I was willing to pay at that point. (I wasn't going to pay $160 for 8 hours)

So I decide to try to guilt them into it by sitting down in the chair across from them in the lobby. I play some games on my phone, and stare at them for the next half hour. No dice. They just talk amongst themselves.

Finally I head back to the room and try to think it out. Fuck it, I decide to sleep in my car for a few hours. Something I haven't done since college. I grab my laptop bag and slip out the door, and realize MY FUCKING CAR KEYS ARE ON THE DESK IN THE ROOM.

I use the keycard on the door but it won't open. I can hear it hitting the metal bar on the inside of the door that has apparently opened on its own slightly, just enough to block me. I'm thinking, "Fuck, I gotta wake these guys up just to get my keys..."

Then I remember that I always have a spare key in my wallet. Whew...

In my car I lie back in the seat and after two minutes realize that's not going to work. So I actually CLIMB into the back of my car(the back seat is down) and try to spread out with my feet back toward the trunk. It's incredibly uncomfortable.

I say fuck that and climb back into the driver's seat. It's like 4am now. I'm thinking that this is going to ruin my Friday night fun because I can't even check into my room until 4pm, and the show starts at 5pm so the chances of me catching a nap are nil.

I do a quick search and find a super 8 motel not far away. It's dirt cheap. I head that way.

The Super8 dude buzzes me in and proceeds to be the rudest mutherfucker I have ever met. He acts like he doesn't want me to rent a room. Tells me he won't give me the internet rate. Here's the regular rate, but there are plenty of other hotels to go stay at. Tells me I can't stay two nights, even though I've told him twice I only need the room until check out. Asks how I want to pay and I say I'll pay cash when I leave, here's a credit card for incidentals.

He's like, "Oh no, you pay up front." I'm like, "Every hotel I've ever stayed at you give them a credit card, when you check out you either put it on the card or pay cash". He acts like he's never heard of this.

Whatever. I give him the cash, hit the room. I get about 4.5 hours of sleep before checkout. Better than nothing.



FRIDAY

We go to Subway to get lunch. It's like $30 for 3 subs and 2 sodas. Welcome to fucking tourist land in Williamsburg. Five dollar footlong my ass.

The show opens. It's not very impressive. The dealer's room is cool because since not that many dealer's were there, the tables aren't butted up against each other. We got plenty of space to stretch out.

The guest room is a wasteland because so many guests canceled at the last minute. It's brutal. There are quite a few people though. Unfortunately by the end of the night we'd done barely any money. Wasn't looking good.

We have some drinks that night with Dom and Brett, hanging out and watching some really bad karaoke(or scaryoke as they called it).


(and we find out that one of Dom's clients, a guest, didn't make her plane, didn't call or email. A total no-show, and one Dom now wont' work with again. The bad news for us is that she was hot and we were gonna get to hang out with her...)
This was our room...why couldn't it have been Stewie's?

Our room is super nice--very large with a sofa couch and a chair and desk. We can only wonder why couldn't Stewie have had this room? We go to bed with a decent buzz. Unfortunately Zig has developed a snore at some point over the last year or so. I can't get to sleep.

I finally fall soundly asleep at around 4:30am, knowing I have to get up at 8:50am so we can be at the dealer's room by 9am.

Unaware of the terrible day coming...

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Off To The Con






So, prepped as I'm gonna get for this con. They've lost a lot of the cooler guests in the last few weeks, so I don't know how this is going to go.

Hopefully more money to spend at my table...

Either way, the vokda's packed. Can't forget the important things!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Recovering

Zig will approve of that picture.

Anyway, recovering from the nightmarish ordeal of work. When I cash the check I will feel even better, but it's almost all spent already anyway...

Also, coming up on the day I have to get HH taken off of Amazon. I can't find any current information for the company I licensed it to nor the company THEY licensed it to that's currently hosting it on Amazon.

So I guess I'm gonna have to hit this page:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=help_search_1-1?ie=UTF8&nodeId=201140760&qid=1437258769&sr=1-1

Provide some information to get them to pull it down. July 22nd.

Prepping for the STC convention this weekend. On the bummer side William Katt pulled out--was looking forward to drinking with him, since a buddy of mine is his rep. But the good news is that he's bringing http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001863/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1 and http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0236952/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1

The first one is still super sexy and the second is freakin BUBBA! Bubba didn't do it! If you don't know what I mean then you have missed out, my friend.

Also the Shep will be there, and she's cool to hang out with. Last con we were at though, she was pregnant, so there was no drinking. Hopefully this time there will be drinking.

Will post about nightmare week later. Maybe. Dunno if I wanna relive it.


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Fuckin' Tired

Too tired to even go grab a picture to post here. In the five days I was gone, there were 2 consecutive days where I worked 30 out of 36 hours.


A lot of it physical. Hardest 2 days I've ever spent, and I count my movie-making days in there. So hard that I will not be repeating it. If they ever schedule something like this again, fuck the money, count me out.

Details later. But right now I'm going to sleep. Kinda hoping to see Ant Man in the morning.

Ah fuck it, here's your picture.

And ohmygod now I can't sleep. But I'm so tired. How about this? Pretty neat:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/pluto-cthulhu_55a5dda9e4b0896514cfbc06?ncid=fcbklnkushpmg00000022

I've been pretty fascinated with this whole Pluto and New Horizon thing since I heard about it.

PS of note to all fucking web sites. If you have a fucking REMEMBER ME checkbox next to the log in, WHY THE FUCK DOESN'T IT EVER WORK? Yes, I fucking accept cookies, so it's not that. Your fucking web site is a fucking piece of shit. I hope you fucking die.

PPS: I'm a bit irritable at the moment.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Another month blazing along...

Siren:
Mostly locked down. I'm still working on the shot of my kid's head in a bag. Tried to put the bag on him, but even cutting the bottom out and the sides it barely fits down far enough. The shots I got of him like that aren't great.

Also shot some without the bag, with him acting as if the bag was there. I'm trying to composite them into the shot but it's not looking great. I'm taking a flat pic and inserting it into the bag. The head we have in the bag moves as the bag is opened, and in a way my kid's head isn't.

So even adding shadows and motion tracking the head, it doesn't look right. What a pain in the ass.

In other shots, have to go back to the exploding head soon.

I've also removed a mailbox from one shot and a rifle from another.

Started the end credit sequence.
--------

Saturday I go to Kansas City. Big auction. Sounds like it's going to be a nightmare. One of the days may be an 18 hour day.

And I won't be doing my normal job, so that'll suck. As tedious as it is, at least I'm used to it. Don't get back until Thursday. Then I'll be back to prep for the horror con that follows the next weekend.

Then I have to get serious about this last segment. Cast it, shooting script it, get all the crap ready for us to shoot in late August. (or maybe early September)

And then hope we get another submission or two so I don't have to do any more of them...

Friday, July 03, 2015

Busy week. Like, really busy.


 

Shot a pick up for Siren. Thought I had everything until we got out there and I realized we didn't have the fucking shotgun. The fucking shotgun the main guy holds like most of the fucking movie.

I had a very limited shot list, so it wasn't a total loss. Shot some med cu's where the gun wouldn't have been in the picture anyway. Shot some other shots that, if I want to use them, I will have to composite the gun into his hand.

That'll be fun.

Came back had to dive right back in and shoot another video for the auction coming up. Then edit it, upload it. Turned out to be nearly 90 minutes of edited video when I was done with it.

This auction's taking up a sizeable amount of my time, but it's paying well which is nice because right now I'm as broke as I've been in a while.

Hey, did I mention we've been smelling natural gas in our house since they changed out our meter like 5 months ago? It's vague, but every time you walk in the house for the first time you get that whiff of it.

We've just been ignoring it, cuz hey, house hasn't exploded right?

Finally called the electric company and let me tell you--they don't fuck around with it. Dude was out within 30 minutes of the call. Checked all around, but it's clearly coming from somewhere in our gas oven. The oven's antique, from like 1950. Looks like this:

And unfortunately for us, it's so old that it doesn't have a cutoff valve. So the guy ends up shutting the gas off to our entire house. No hot water.

What that means is that I have to get inside the over, unscrew the pipe, and cap it(after running to Lowe's to get a cap).  Luckily my dad helps me so it goes pretty easy.

But now we have to sell this thing(we don't want to throw it away since they're worth money) and then get a new one. We don't have room to just buy a new one and bring it in--this old thing is a monster and if we put it on the porch then we won't be able to move on the porch.

Joys of living in a fucking old house.

-------------

Haven't been able to put the pickups into the edited Siren yet. I got done uploading the auction videos, plus re-exporting individual clips from S. Temple movies so they can put them into a powerpoint presentation at the auction.

Figure I got a couple of hours, so I head back into the Halloween book. Really gotta get that to a place I can forward it to the graphic guy, so he can make it look presentable. As is, it's a really ugly looking book with lots of interesting stuff in it.
---
Went over to one of the locations we wanna use for the T-tory wrap. Did a lighting test with the GH4. Man, it's dark as shit.

Pretty good odds I'm going to use the 5D for it instead. Has much better low light ability. Takes out my 4K bonuses though.