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This blog tends to wander from its main purpose -- updates on my fiction. I do have updates and excerpts of my work. But I also write about my obsessions -- food, friends and pop culture and my weird life in Los Angeles. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Updates, Adutions, Tramps and Cannibals

Warning: If you find yourself here via a google search for such things as TV shows or films, recipes or cities, this blog has some facts. However, this blog is one author’s very twisted musing on many weird things. It is sometimes graphic in content. If you read on, don’t write to yell at me.

We’ve been enjoying an interesting fall, weather wise. It’s been a bracing 90 degrees, but the humidity is mostly gone. Delightful...right. I tried to screen capture one of the Doppler-ganger forecast last week, because it had an animated map of the region charting the likelihood of a brush fire. This is an exciting new weather development. So we had sunny, warm with a 90 degree high and a 30 percent chance of fire as a forecast. My brother was quite astonished when I told him this. ‘You live in a city that has a fire forecast. Doesn’t that sound screwed up to you?’ It may have ten years ago, but not so much now. I find I’m more annoyed that I can’t cook the very yummy looking fall recipes I’m seeing on all the cooking shows. The thought of a blazing hot over on a 90 degree day is not very appealing.

And a big good luck to Philly tonight. I’m not just talking about the World Series. I wishing a good luck to the citizens in south Philly who have the World Series game, an Eagles game and a Who concert in the same afternoon/evening. Fun!

Film and Concept Updates
This week came closest to high level of crazed I feel when we’re fully in production. Ralph and I are working on three projects at once. This confusing on its own. Add to that the fact that three of people we interact most have the same first name. I began insisting on Mafia style nicknames. To quote my South Philly paisan, Gideon: ‘When you have three Vinnies, two Louies and four Tonies in a room, you gotta do something.’ Ralph opted for three versions of the same name. He’s no fun. Confusion aside, we’re on track with the two films. Recent developments with the Gunslinger that give us more days for the shoot will likely prompt us to replace a couple of scenes we’d cut to trim the running time and the budget. We’ve also come up with a way to return those scenes and still keep the crisp pace of the film. This film is turning into a more ambitious project than first thought. The changes are exciting, and as soon as I’m free to speak about them, I’ll dish.

The Script for Luv U 4 Ever is largely in Jon’s hands now. We’ve worked out the character arcs. He asks me a question now and then about the timeline, but he’s in his scene blocking while writing more and I really can’t help much with that. We have made a wish list of songs from the 70s. There really sticky issue will be how much the licensing will cost. Full budget film in no way means big budget film. My composing friends are submitting tunes for Billy Swain and Dave Martin’s band. That’s been fun to review.

Meanwhile, I have my own issues to deal with aside from the conference calls with Ralph and the three guys with the same name. We had an audition this week for Rik Heron of Blood Oath. We have a high profile Casting director for Luv U 4 Ever doing the first contacts with potential cast, but I still prefer casting actors myself. Aside from experiencing such things as Travis Willingham (I have no good reason for the photo. I just wanted to see it again)flirting with Jon who was reading the leading lady role (rather convincingly) or conversely, watching Jon play Shadow Smith to Jennifer’s KD when she auditioned (he was equally conniving there, too). Hey, he was flirting with Matty as while running lines with him before the blood oath audition. I beginning to think that my director is a tramp. That aside, it is always fascinating to see the spin that actors put on words I’ve written. This was a particularly interesting set of auditions, because we usually don’t have someone we’ve cast to read against an auditioning actor. Since each reading was different, Matty responded accordingly. We saw three different versions of Vincent from him and all of them were valid. We found our Rik Heron. I can’t say who he is, because he hasn’t been signed. However, I will say that he’s as dark and gorgeous and intense as the character I wrote. This will be quite a trailer. I’ve also found a good stunt coordinator who still makes time for smaller projects. The interplay between Matty and our choice for Rik reminded Jon and I strongly of interactions between Obiwan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. Yep, dorky minds think alike. The characters in that film had a playful chemistry while projecting an aura of deadly confidence. I liked that in that pair, but what made them really appealing is the often hapless nature of the way they executed their missions. This was an inspiration I desperately needed. Believe it or not, despite the 500 pages of material I have between the Soldiers novels, I was really finding it difficult to pick a scene that encompassed the nature of the characters and the challenges they face. I now have a handle on the scene and, in fact, wrote a third of it last night. All of this Blood Oath stuff has my mind wandering to the next Soldiers book. I am keeping that firmly on the back burner now. One more project and I think my head will explode.

Now, For the Rants
Warning: spoilers for CSI: Miami

As I expected, there wasn’t much to the cannibal episode two weeks ago. Admittedly, killing someone by chomping a chunk of jugular is unusual, but it wasn’t like the man in question was routinely dining on his neighbors. To top it off, he was dead before the first commercial break. Thus, there was not the constant menacing threat implied in the commercials. But that wasn’t what makes me rant about this episode. Our Horatio Caine has a new nemesis – the Russian Mob. It seems that the cannibal incident was part of a large nefarious scheme to extort yacht owners out of ownership of their very expensive slips in an exclusive marina. To what end, I’m not sure. Aside from this being a highly unlikely interest of the Russian mob, rich people do not react to such extortion in the ways others might. They tend to call the authorities. The Philly mob had notions of extorting Willard Rouse 3rd to cash in on the huge developments he was building in Philly. The phone call Rouse made resulted in convictions of a Mafia Don and a Philadelphia City Councilman. Even if the couple in question didn’t call the authorities, the owners of the exclusive marina would call after slip after slip was bought by someone they hadn’t approved. They barely let people who can afford it into those places. It was silly. And so is the new, teenaged coroner. I find it insulting that the producers seemed to think that if she’s attractive and black, she’s a good replacement for an actor the caliber of Khandi Alexander.
I had more to rant about, but it’s escaped me completely. I am off to do some warm weather cooking and get back to the script.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank for running the semi-nekkid photo of Travis again.