Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Trip to L.A. - Filming and a Decision

So, this past weekend we filmed on Super 8 and 16mm (Super 8 was Saturday, 16 on Sunday).  It was a good two days.

There were a few issues...

For example, the trailer we were using with all the grip equipment was a bit too heavy for the Hills:

Once the trailer was finally in place we started shooting.  The shoot went quite well, though there were some interesting camera set-ups:

That would be me, in a tree, on the side of a very steep hill.  The tree is the only thing between myself and a slide downward.

Thanks gravity!

Anyway, the shoot went quite well.  I LOVE shooting on 16mm.  I'd forgotten how good that felt.

We didn't get everything we needed, but we plan to shoot this weekend as well (depending on the weather).

Check out my facebook for more photos from the shoot, all taken by Patrick McEveety.

Now, as to my decision...

I've decided that L.A. is no place for me.  I'm sure I'll be out here for work, or to potentially talk to a network about a show; but this is no place for me.

The traffic is horrendous, the place is altogether too big (takes too long to get from place to place), there's smog to deal with (my bronchial asthma will probably come back hardcore if I breath in too much of this crap), and I don't really like the way business generally runs.

The way it seems to work is this, you work every angle, connive, lie, cheat, and steal until someone takes notice of you and gives you a shot.  You try your best to get on a project that is going to be huge (or at least has the potential) in the meager hope that it takes you along for the ride.

While I understand that's part of the "business" of film, it's not the only part.  One of the guys I'm staying with pulled out the old line, "this isn't show 'friends', it's show 'business'!"

Frankly, that's bullshit.

There are a ton of successful actors, producers, and filmmakers that are FRIENDS and business partners at the same damn time.

If you can't see yourself as being friends with someone, why in the hell are you trying to work with them?

It's not the way I do business.  That way leads to bitterness and broken promises.

Anyway, that's what I've got so far.  Another week in L.A., then back to the safety of shooting in North Carolina, where people don't threaten to call the cops on you for filming on an empty plot of land.

Maybe my friend Todd can show me a better side to this town when we meet up.  Probably not though.

William the Bloody Hometown Boy Redd

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Trip to L.A. - The Arrival

So,  I'm in Los Angeles for the first time ever.  Here to shoot a music video with some friends from back home who have moved out for the long haul.

It's like a whole other world.  Of course, there's the insane traffic.  I have no idea how to get around this town (I couldn't drive in this mess anyway).

Surprisingly, I've already had my first celebrity siting.  Saw Maya Rudolph talking to Molly Shannon (didn't see Molly, she had her back to me, but saw Maya).  One of the guys with us said Molly was the other woman after we'd passed.

OK, just ran out to Samuel French's (local bookstore, all film and theatre) and saw Nora Dunn.  It's like the invasion of the SNL alumni!  Wanted to say something to Nora, but couldn't think of anything that wouldn't sound too fanboy/creepy.  Oh well.

Anyway, it's a strange place.  Still getting my bearings.  Don't know if I could live here.  Work yes, live no.

William the Bloody Culture Shocked Redd