Monday, April 26, 2010

Week 16 Darkness Falls...

Hello friends,

Sitting in a dark room again. It seems to me that windows would make a nice addition to post houses. You know, stop my skin from turning grey. Yes, yes, yes I know: It has to be dark so you can fully appreciate the pictures and yes, the room has to be sound proof and cinema-like to appreciate the sound -- buuuuuttt, surely a couple windows wouldn't kill anyone, or even some art on the walls -- heck I'd settle for some retro wallpaper!

Shouldn't whinge though, and it's not like my irish skin is ever anything but pale anyway. Truth is, this stage of post production is FUN. Everything's pretty. Pretty pictures, pretty sound FX and pretty bloody good toasted sandwiches! I don't know what it is, but there's just something about having a toasted sandwich made for you. It's such a simple pleasure and it takes me back to when my Momma used to make me jaffles (or Brevilles as we called them on account of the brand name of our jaffle maker). I'd come home from school and be served up a piping hot Breville. Yum, yum yum. You could fill those bad boys with anything! Cheese and tomato, pizza toppings, baked beams...  Hmmm, I'm clearly a man that enjoys simple pleasures (or just a simple man).

But I'm guessing if you're reading this you're not doing so for my love of toasties. HOWEVER, I can inform you that it was my love of COOKING and a movie called Julie & Julia that got me started on this whole blog thing. So I happy I did. I look back on my first blogs and although I may not have shown it, I was pretty bloody nervous: First feature, privately financed, away shoot, new crew, untried cast members -- but I gotta tell you: it couldn't have gone better! ..and this bloggy thing has  been very therapeutic.

Was Ricky's bday on the weekend! Anzac day. The big 30. Was always my major goal after finishing VCA that'd I'd make a film before turning 30. Have done that. But is it any good? Proof will be in the pudding -- Mmmmm pudding. Am hungry now... think I'll order another Breville.

Much Love,

Ricky : )

Friday, April 16, 2010

Week 15 Picture Lock

Hello friends,

This week has been super stressful for Ricky (as u can tell from the pic), but man has it been rewarding.

You begin to scrutinise every frame when it's time to sign off on an edit. You begin to worry about scenes and shots you never had before, only to change them, only to change them back because it was gold and you where messin with it! But after much tossing and turning and watching and re-watching I can happily announce: we have PICTURE LOCK! AND I'M SUPER PUMPED ABOUT IT.

7 years of love and effort comes in at round 110 mins. It's been a long time, but now more than ever I know it was worth it. Never been broker, never been happier. That's filmmaking in Oz!

Now we can start to think about release date. Another tricky subject. our distributors have this well under control, but picking a date is bloody hard. There's so many factors: time of year, season, school holidays, what else is being released, proximity to other Aussie flicks. And before all that; which international film festival to premiere at? What's the wish list and what might fit best to coincide with potential OS sales. Oh, the list goes far deeper than that -- Ricky's musings are merely chicken scratchings on a dusty road map at the best of times. Case studies can only take you so far too. So many great films don't make an impact at the cinema. This distribution caper is a hard one.

Any ho, it's gonna be exciting and I wouldn't miss it for the world. We'll be releasing our poster shortly, and then our trailer... can't wait to hear all your opinions.

Big shout out to my bud Jamie who's distributing Eclipse which opened in Oz this week. Go and see it if you can -- It's a cracker.

Much Love,

Ricky : )

Monday, April 5, 2010

Week 14 Post Production

Pic #1 Ricky, Virginia (prod manager), Greg (DOP), Pacharo (plays Monty in Summer Coda), Nathan (plays Joey).

Hello Friends,

Summer Coda picture lock is upon us! Ahhhh! Time to make those final edit decisions. Time to weigh up which test audience results you want to agree with. Tricky, but exciting.

Once we lock pictures the sound boys take over. We spend as much time on sound as the picture edit, which is awesome cause it provides new pangs of excitement when you first hear a scene properly mixed with our original score. It's those elements that make test screenings (of unfinished films) so hard to gauge.

After sound comes the GRADE! Finally get to see all our pretty pictures in full resolution. In my petty world, watching Summer Coda in shitty low res has been like watching Godfather on YouTube! Well kinda. Well, no not really but you get the point. Either way, can not wait to sit down in a theatre and see our finished pictures with a 5.1 mix. Ace.

Had an awesome time in Hollywood -- as if there was ever any doubt! So cool to be living in a city that lives and breaths film. Oh, and it's way cheaper to see films there -- so there's a BIG bonus.

Which fool thought it was a good idea to start charging $18 a ticket to see a movie in Oz?

We wonder why it's hard to get peeps to go see Aussie flicks. I completely understand: I reckon a lot of folks that fork out $18 want a BIG experience, like Dragon or Robin Hood or even Avatarded. So how bout this for an idea: $1 from each ticket sale for box office smash hits goes towards subsidising the cost of an Australian film ticket? So you could go and see your Aussie films for $10. Even if it was 50 cents it would still work out, and who would mind paying $18.50 for a ticket to a block buster if it meant you could see any local flick for $10. Sure you'd make less profit from each Aussie ticket sale, but you'd sell soooooo many more tickets and develop a culture of supporting our local product.

I reckon that would be gold. Of course it'll never happen... until Ricky gets a few more runs on the board and then it's WHAM, SMACK, POW movie ticket revolution baby!

And if you don't like that, how bout just 50cents from each non-Aussie movie ticket goes into a fund to produce more local flicks. That's millions of dollars in the kitty. We MUST make more films -- and preferably from varied funding sources.

Anyway, enough dreaming. Onto more thirst quenching things: We took a tour through the vineyards where Sideways was shot. Just beautiful. About an hour out of Santa Barbara, near a place called Buellton. Turns out the winery where Sandra Oh worked is owned by an Aussie. He hooked us up with a reservation at the Hitching Post. Just awesome. And no, we didn't drink any f*cking Merlot! Pics below.

Much love,

Ricky : )

Pic #2 The road to Santa Barbara. Pretty. Those yellow bad boys are mustard flowers.
Pic #3 Little Aussie vineyard making delicious Zinfandel.
Pic #4 The cellar door where Sandra Oh worked. Check out the Aussie flag on the roof. Wall to wall indigenous art and a Sideways poster too.
Pic #5 The Hitching Post bar. Ohhhhhhhh, their own red wine is divine!
Pic #6 Ricky with mini bottle of '05 Highliner. stunning. the right size for drinking in the car on the way home!