Choose Your Own Blog

Sunday, October 3, 2010

March 1st, 2007: Shivers The Gay Icon

Found out Shivers is a bit of a gay icon. This was the first time I heard about it, but certainly not the last. A lot of gay guys shoot us emails telling us they fear Shivers, but they wouldn't mind being raped by him either.

This pic was drawn by a talented comic artist named Patrick Fillion who owns a company that publishes gay-themed comics. You can check him out at but be warned they are XXX and the content is highly adult.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

We Interrupt This Blog

To bring you this--we're trying to raise the last 25% of our budget on the new flick through crowd-sourcing via Indiegogo. So we're asking everybody's help!

But don't worry--there's some cool incentives to be had with your donation! Check out the link below to see the teaser and more info!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

December 4th, 2006

Well, I can always put up some of the crazy emails we get sometimes. Here's one. I have not edited it in any way.

I have only added a picture of what I think this person looks like.

Dear, Fear Clown i want tell you something i done watch you in movie and you can't scare me ha ha and know why that i am not scare because i alway watch scare movie so i am not not scare of you and i am 11 year old to not scare of you Fear loser clown OPP BYE LOSER

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Video from FOC1 Premiere

This has never been up before. I just found it. I shot a little bit of video footage in the limo on the way to the premiere of "Fear of Clowns", and then handed the camera off to someone who taped random shit.

But it's neat to see everybody, and very hard to believe this was like 8 years ago...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Not Much Updating, I Know

At least, here...but over on the FOC2 board, there's lots! With pictures!

Check 'em out! You should be following that one. We're about to launch into the actual production logs...

Friday, April 23, 2010

June 13th, 2006 - A Million Bucks

Wow, not a lot of FOC articles left, you know? During this period I was keeping a lot of notes on the making of FOC2, which we had just wrapped up shooting.

June 13th

Ok, I'm gonna give ya a little inside information. And before you go thinking I'm buying a Ferrari and moving to the coast, understand that I don't necessarily see any of this money.

What you see above you is a tracking chart on how FOC has done from its release on Feb 28th up to June 6th. Yep, as you can see, it's made over a million dollars in rentals. Not too shabby for a film that cost under 50K and had NO none actors whatsoever.

What's interesting to me though is what's going on in the past two weeks. There's actually an UPSWING in viewers--I would assume a movie comes out and then decreases until it's no longer doing any business.

Sure, you could say a one-week upturn is just an anomaly. But FOC increased one week by 6% and then the following week by 29%--and there's been no press that I know of to spark the sudden re-interest.

But hey--my picture has made over a million dollars in RENTALS ALONE. Sure would love to get my hands on the sales figures though...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

March 10th, 2006: Fuuuuuuuuck

This should be a wake-up call for those indy filmmakers dreaming of a real distributor giving them a bunch of money to distribute their movie.

Because, check out how my movie did for Lionsgate. I'm the highest LGF movie of the week in sales other than The Ultimate Avengers, a Marvel Comics movie. FOC outperformed a LOT of movies, not just this week, but in the next month.

And when LGF got the chance to acquire the sequel, they weren't prepared to even match the offer we got on the first film. Even though we had already proven that our movie was very lucrative for them. There was no reason to think the sequel wouldn't perform as well as the original--and since it's actually a better movie, I figure it might do better in the end.

So if you think a distributor is going to pay you a lot of money for your film in today's market, it's just not going to happen.

Pardon the language. I ain't happy.

Here's the thing: I've been watching the top 10 direct-2-dvd charts for months now. The rentals have been fairly non-impressive, so I had high hopes that FOC could crack the top 10.

Well, I just got the top 10 and FOC ain't there. You know why? Because every effin' sequel in the world(including some Disneys) came out in the past month and who can compete with that?

Stuart Little 3. Bambi 2(are you kidding me? Who needs a sequel to that?) The Prince and Me 2. American Pie Presents Band Camp. (essentially American Pie 3.5) Dungeons & Dragons 2.

I had assumed there would be a couple on the list, but not that many. I shouldn't be TOO unhappy. FOC was number 11, so it only JUST missed the list. But still.

Monday, April 12, 2010

March 2nd, 2006 FOC on imdb rankings

While imdb rankings are certainly no indication of quality, it was certainly very cool to see the level of interest in my flick rivaled some big movies.

March 2nd

I mentioned that FOC hit 192 on the imdbpro list--that may not sound impressive. I mean, 192 isn't exactly #1 now is it?

So I checked to see what else is on the list near my flick. If you want to see if for yourself, click on the picture above.

I'll give you the highlights though.

FOC is higher on the list than Rumor Has It(a $43 million dollar picture) and Derailed(a $36 million dollar picture starring Clive Owen and Jennifer Aniston). Within 15 places of FOC is Steven Spielberg's War of The Worlds, starring the little-known Tom Cruise. The Fog and A History Of Violence(the film my buddy is nominated for an Oscar for) are all near FOC.

So it's amazing that FOC is near movies of that caliber(and when I say caliber, I mean, movies that cost roughly 1000 times the cost of FOC).

A little FYI.

Friday, April 9, 2010

March 1st, 2006 My Thoughts on FOC's release

March 1s, 2006

Please take note that any complaints I make here are totally overshadowed by the fact that my movie was released by Lionsgate.

$22.99 for a dvd at Best Buy that doesn't have recognizable stars is a bit much.

For that matter it appears that all of the Best Buys WAY underordered(about 3 copies per store)

The menus on the disc kind of blow, and there's a TON of extras they didn't include. But the movie is VERY high quality, and so are the extras they included. The "Making Of" is every bit as sharp as the film itself.

Blockbuster also apparently didn't go as heavy as I expected. Most of the ones in this area are carrying between 6-10 copies. My wife informed me of this when I woke up--she'd gone EVERYWHERE looking to see how many each store had.

In the cool news department, Hollywood Video seems to be the best outlet for FOC. The two stores near me had 32 copies and 20 copies. Yeah, you read that right. 32 FREAKIN' COPIES of my movie!

Very sweet. I'm holding my breath that the flick makes it on the top 10 direct-2-dvd movies of the week. If it does, you can bet I'll post it here.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

February 26th, 2006: Imdb rankings

Quick update. There's a side of imdb(Internet Movie Database) called imdbpro, which has lots more details about films and people. It also rates people according to a Starmeter and movies by a Moviemeter--gauging their ranks on how often people search for their names/movies(including being linked from search engines)

The highest I ever saw my first movie "Hunting Humans" get was around 2000, and that was the week of its release.

FOC has been hanging around 14,000--yes, there are a lot of movies out there.

I just checked five minutes ago and it's 192.

Sweet! And if you've seen the movie, go rate it! If you haven't seen the movie, go rate it a 10!

It was like a 7 earlier in the week, and all of a sudden some bastards have been slamming me with a 1. I think they probably mean it's the best movie they've ever seen(hence, #1) and are just confused by the numbered system.

Yeah, that's it.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

January 27th, 2006: Ad roundup

Just goes to show you...a lot of people tell me the FOC commentary is great. I didn't remember it that way but maybe I'll have to go listen to it...

Jan. 27

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. :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

January 24th, 2006

It's funny, a guy I didn't know very well back then sent me this picture he'd rigged up with Photoshop. 

That guy is Robert Long, whose web site is but back then he was just a guy from California who was talking about moving out this way. (and he has)

January 24th, 2006

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 TGI 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?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Quality Control(The QC)

Some people don't know what a QC is. It stands for Quality Control, and any real film contract will stipulate that your film must pass the QC--or you will pay to have it fixed until it does.

This is to ensure the quality of the master that the distributor will use to distribute the flick. Now, each lab is different.

I figured I'd use Fotokem for my QC since they developed and transferred the film for my first movie, "Hunting Humans", and they were the guys Lionsgate used.

Well, it just so happens that Fotokem is one of the tougher QC labs. They catch EVERYTHING. I mean, if you have a blip that only dogs can hear on your audio track, they will catch it. If your boom mic is in a shot for 1 frame(actually IMPOSSIBLE to see with the naked eye), they will catch it.

And with FOC...they did.

Here's the first 4 of 8 pages of problems with my master of "Fear of Clowns". So the curious can get a gander at what a QC actually looks like.

Eventually I sent it to another lab and paid $1100 to have them fix the major problems.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Did I mention the FOC2 Log is now up?

In case you missed it. The timeline between FOC1 and 2 overlaps a little, but FOC2 is mostly new stuff dealing only with FOC2.

Check it out below:


December 19, 2005

Just checked. The ad is still there if you'd like to take a look, even though they don't publish the mag anymore--which is a shame. It was a great marketing tool for filmmakers, even though that wasn't its intention.

It's page 4 if you'd like to see it.

Monday, December 19, 2005

New edition of VB Weekly came out today. Instead of the 2-page spread, they've got a 1 page ad for FOC in this week's--with the correct running time of 106 minutes.

For those who would like to see it, click here:


Click on the magazine and it will take you to the online edition where you can flip pages until you see the ad. Pretty handy format.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Word About Netflix & Victory Multimedia

I'd like to take a moment to express my OPINION on something here. Everything I say below is my opinion regarding this event.


I submitted FOC2 myself to Netflix myself. I figured it's a no-brainer that they'd be interested because 1)The first film performed extremely well(a fact they can check for themselves) and 2) I've seen some of the ridiculous stuff they carry.

I mentioned in my letter that I could either provide them with whatever limited edition FOC2s I have left or, if they need more, I could print up a whole new batch that would be Netflix exclusive with never-before-seen stuff.

Three months later I get a letter from them. It's a form letter that says:
Thank you for your recent submission. We have received and reviewed your materials. Regretfully, we are passing on your submission.

However, If you are looking for distribution:

Victory Multimedia works with many independent film producers and small distributors.

If you wish to establish a distribution agreement with Victory Multimedia, please contact Randy Freeman at Victory Multimedia at your earliest convenience

This is weird. An outright pass would be pretty weird, frankly, but passing me on to someone?

I don't contact anyone. I try to find some info on this Victory Multimedia. I find nothing other than one blog post that mentions in passing that Randy from Victory is "an a$$hole".

This is one of the reasons I'm doing this blog; the more people who spread this info, the better.

Two days later I get an email from a "David Solomon" of Victory Multimedia and he CCs Randy Freeman. Let me reiterate: I did not contact anyone, nor did I give permission to Netflix to pass my contact info on to anyone.

Included with David Solomon's email is a contract for distribution. That's right. Not a request for a screener. Not a basic agreement with terms. A full out contract for distribution.

Say what?

And in my opinion, this contract is one gigantic, piece of shit rip-off. Why? Let me tell you.

What it wants me to do is this: Sign the contract. They will then request I provide them with a certain number of units of my film. Yep. I have to get the discs printed and finished, and then ship them to Victory.

I can set the retail price. Super. Victory will give me 40% of the retail price for each unit. (a shitty split right there considering I'm doing ALL the upfront work)

THEN: I also have to pay them 10% upfront of what they order. This is to go toward "Program and Development Funds". So if they order $10,000(an arbitrary number for ease of use) worth of retail from you, they would pay you $4000(40%) minus $1000(10%)'d get $3000 for what you send them.

But there's more. Later, whatever they don't sell they ship back to you and you owe them whatever they gave you. So if they don't sell $4000 worth of product, you're getting that product back and you're going to be in debt, because the $1000 is gone either way.(got space to warehouse that stuff they sent back?)

And this is the company that Netflix not only recommended but seems to endorse by passing on my information(and perhaps screener) without my consent?

To me, it appears that Netflix has some sort of backdoor deal with Victory--they turn down flicks, wait until Victory picks them up, then they get them cheap from Victory. If the title doesn't rent well at Netflix, Netflix can have Victory ship back whatever they didn't open at the filmmaker's expense.

The fact that you can't find anything online about "Victory Multimedia" is suspicious enough. Real companies have real web sites.

Well, I'm hoping to spread some information about this deal, which in my opinion is a giant scam. I thought Netflix was a better company that that, but it appears that they are not.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

December 15, 2005

Turns out the ads were wrong. They didn't cut the movie at all, or the Making Of.

December 15, 2005

Lions Gate Becomes Lionsgate

Yeah, so they changed their name. I've read the reasons, but it all sounds kinda goofy to me. Whatever. Doesn't really affect me.

But I was informed by someone who took a closer look at the ad that it says FOC is 88 minutes. I'm hoping this is a typo or mis-information.

The cut I delivered to them is 106 minutes. However, if you want to sign a deal with Lionsgate you sign away final cut right and title right. So if they want to cut your movie or change the title, they can legally.

I knew the title was safe: A rep told me over the phone how much they liked it and couldn't believe it hadn't been used before.

But the cut...I tried to make it as hard as possible for them to cut anything. There are some tricks in delivery you can do to make it difficult for them, but it's far from impossible for them to do it.

So now I'm wondering if they cut 18 minutes out of the film, and if so...what they hell they cut. Should be interesting to see. I know the ad was bought and paid for months ago, so it may just be they were taking a guess when they created the ad.

And for those interested in FOC2--check the message boards for the exclusive first look at the casting notice. It won't go out to Backstage or any of the other casting places until January.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Press Kits

You know, I try to stay away from truly helpful information, 'cause like I need more competition from you effers. Right?


Anyway, a long time ago I remember I had no idea what a press kit actually looked like. My first producer's rep, in a rare move that actually benefitted me, sent me a stack of press kits to get an idea of what they looked like.

My press kits have gotten a little better than what they used to be. I now have them online, which saves money from printing them up each time you have to send a screener out. I just sent a glossy of the poster, the screener, and either a letter directing them online or I throw the whole press kit on a self-booting CD.

Long story short, if you want to know what one looks like, check the link below. Don't copy me exactly, eh? Have some pride. :)

FOC Press Kit

P.S. Please don't pass on that link. If you want to direct filmmakers here, go ahead, but this was never really information I was going to pass on to the general public.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Some pics I found

Found a disc with some pics I never put up. Here's some of them.

This first one was the sign on the "Happy Clown"'s minivan. I added the last line in honor of our Jewish Executive Producer. I thought it might make him laugh, 'cause who the fuck wants a clown for their bah mitzvah?
(side note: I believe my buddy Rich Henn designed and printed this up for me)

Here you see our still photographer taking pics for the press kit. Yes, that's me.

Here you see, from left to right, Dave Mun, Jed Duvall on the ground as "Happy Clown", J.P. Barry as the cop, and Steve Carson, our first A.C.(which, on my set, means you may have to be boom operator also)

Why does my brother Paul look so guilty? I'm not sure. Maybe he knows we're behind schedule and he shouldn't be posing for behind-the-scenes pics.
Just guessing.

Friday, February 12, 2010

November 14-15th, 2005

Okay, I'm starting to have entries regarding FOC2, so I may have to start that blog soon...
EDIT: Link here with new posts soon.

Also, the line in question is when Detective Peters--played by Frank Lama--says, "I'm killing that fucking clown if it's the last thing I do."

And sure enough, people did cheer at the premiere at that line.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

I was just informed by the company that's putting the dvd together that there's no way they can include the "Making Of" I created for the dvd. It's 67 minutes long and pretty comprehensive, but given how many other extras there are and the quality of compression that LG requires of the film, it just won't fit.

They want me to cut it down to 25 minutes. Youch.

So, some lucky people I won't name could be the only people to ever see it in its full form.

Dunno. Maybe I'll put it online someday. That's a lotta bandwidth though...

November 14, 2005

It's 9:51am(I haven't gone to sleep yet) and I just finished another pass on FOC2's script. And I wrote the line. It gave me chills to write it. I can see it clearly. If Frank(who may be reading this so--hey Frank) nails this line, people in the audience will cheer out loud.

Also, a character named Hot Rod may steal the whole show. He seems to have taken on a life of his own.

Monday, February 8, 2010

November 13th 2005

So I remember going to the Annapolis Film Festival--very local. The first night was an opening night thing, and I didn't take a camera. Went with my wife.

I just remember how loud the bar was--where everyone was trying to network. It was a bit comical. I also am notoriously uninterested in networking. It's an anti-social thing.

Local actor Ken Arnold(who I believe helped organize the fest) and local celebrity/news personality Wendy Reiger, who announced the awards

November 13th, 2005
Yeah, been busy attending the Annapolis Film Festival this week(end), so haven't done anything with the blog.

I'll do a blog on the fest when I get back from the "Champagne Awards Ceremony" tonight. And no, I don't expect to win anything.

But getting my ass kissed by all the filmmakers who don't have a distribution deal is kind of an award all by itself, isn't it?

Annapolis Film Festival

So, Friday night my wife and I went to the fest and watched the opening night movie, "Alchemy". It starred the lead actor from that television show "Ed", plus the lead girl from that television show "Scrubs". I could look their names up for you but what fun would that be?

The film was okay. A little slow--and the sound mix was all messed up--but it had some entertaining parts.

After the show we went to the party. Pretty packed, and I'm not sure why they do it but they hire a band that plays incredibly loud. So all these people who want to network and chat end up screaming to be heard over the music.

This pic below is from the awards-show thingee, not the party
(where I didn't have a camera)

To my surprise, the festival director brought the director of "Alchemy" over to meet me, and we chatted for five or ten minutes. He got real interested when I mentioned that Lion's Gate picked up the film.

We left early--didn't feel the need to be there.

Saturday we arrived for the showing of "FOC"--met that goofball Stewie out front and gave him one of my free tickets. When we got to the place they were to show FOC, everybody was leaving--some other movie had just ended.

For five minutes there I thought no one would be at my showing. For once, I didn't really mind. Then people started showing up. All told, about forty of them came.

The flick started and I watched where the audience couldn't see me watching THEM. After a couple of minutes I went upstairs to see how many people were watching the movie that had been put in the main auditorium.

Seven. Niiiiice. But I'm glad we weren't there--my film would have blown the speakers out of the water there.

The crowd was weird. Not laughing in places that normally got a laugh, and laughing at other times I'd never heard one. Of course, there's still one line in the film that always gets the big laugh, and it didn't fail here either.

They'll probably inscribe it on my headstone. (Note: Line in question: "That's the biggest fucking clown I've ever seen.")

The movie ended and I got up to answer questions. This New Yorker says "I got 2 questions for you: First, is the rumor true that Lion's Gate picked up your film, and question 2: How do you justify the way you cheated the audience with the fake ending and then the other ending?"

Nice, easy opening question. It was nice to be able to start: "Yes, Lion's Gate picked it up". I think I was pretty gracious with the second part of the answer.

Anyway, got a bunch more questions which I answered in a more or less intelligent fashion. A lot of the questions were easy because I've gotten them in interviews I've already done.

The New Yorker turns out to be the guy who made the only other movie at the festival that I wanted to see. He wouldn't stop asking me questions and talking to me, even though other people wanted to chat and have me sign posters.

Sunday I got up early(for me) and went to see New Yorker's film with my dad(who digs the Creature From The Black Lagoon also). The film was playing at 2:30 in the big auditorium, and New Yorker was terrified no one would show. He got about 30 people in his showing, which honestly isn't bad considering football's on television and the weather was really nice.

His film was pretty interesting too, though it bogged down about an hour in.

I jetted home and got ready to go back for the awards reception. For once they had some nice food. I skipped the champagne and had a water, then took some pics as they gave the awards to movies I've never heard of, and ones you'll probably never hear of.

Someone asked me if it bothered me that I didn't win. I said I'd rather have the money than the awards.

It reminded me of a cartoon I saw shortly after Spielberg once again wasn't nominated for an Academy Award(before he won one). It had ET walking away from the Oscar statue holding two big bags of money. My feeling exactly.

But I'm serious in saying that every filmmaker who heard I had a deal with Lion's Gate was all over me. They wouldn't leave me alone, asking me questions, saying we should get together and do a project.

The New York guys want me to swing by their place if I get to New York. Interesting factoid: They know Keith David very well(he was the producer of and also narrator of their movie), and being a massive John Carpenter fan, I'd love to put him in one of my flicks. If you don't know, he's the black guy in "The Thing", the guy Rowdy Roddy Piper fights over sunglasses in "They Live" and he was one of the guys in "Prince of Darkness".

So, an interesting festival but I'm glad I'm done with them for this movie. On to the rest.

Wow, look at how fat I was!
(Posing with "New Yorker" Sam Borowski and Matthew Crick)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Sept. 2nd, 2005

Wow, how deceptive this was. We got an offer directly from Gargoyle Video in Italy, and it was a great offer(paid almost half the budget of the film).

I figured--man, we're gonna score some foreign sales. It was the only foreign sale we ever did.

My rep doesn't deal with foreign(but they helped broker this deal after it was brought to them), and the foreign market has just collapsed as far as American films go...

Sept. 2nd, 2005

La Paura Di Pagliacci

We just got a great offer from an Italian production company for FOC. The offer was five times what we got for the Italian rights to HH. My producer's rep made a counteroffer, which they approved so we're getting six times what we got for HH.

We get 30% at signing and the rest by February of next year.

Sweet! This also bodes well for FOC2--we can presell rights and get money up front. Apparently clowns are big in Italy.

I dunno. I just love their Italian Ice.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

FOC2 Goes Amazon VOD

Not FOC1 related, but as you can tell from the links to the right, FOC2 has gone Amazon VOD live. It took them roughly 2 months to set the title up.

Upside--doesn't cost you anything and you can tell them to stop selling/renting your flick and it will happen within a week.

Downside--they take 55%, they set the rental price and purchase price(though you can suggest a purchase price, and in my case they listened).

So I don't know how many people use Amazon VOD, but I guess we'll find out.

And for those wondering, this is the final version of FOC2--the shorter, different-ending version than the limited edition FOC2 dvd.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Scrapbook Post

For the writer-folk. When I start a screenplay I like to write a couple of pages about each character from the first-person so I have an idea of who they are. I sometimes give them to the actor before we shoot, the way I gave this to Frank Lama before FOC2...(mildly spoilerish if you haven't seen FOC2)

My name is Dan Wickerman(pronounced Wih-KER-Min) Peters. I’m a grade one police detective in Maryland.

I grew up in Dallas, Texas. I was an only child. I had a happy childhood, or maybe it just seems that way when I look back through eyes warped by nostalgia.

My dad was a postal worker, but he was a big guy. Played college football so he was pretty imposing. Mom was the homemaker. Keep the house clean, do the laundry, and fix dinner. Old fashioned.

I was eleven the night we were mugged. We were in the city shopping but it got late fast. On our way back to the car some guy—he seemed old to me, but anyone over twenty is ancient to a kid—stuck a gun in our face and demanded our money.

My dad cursed at the guy. It was the first and only time I ever heard him curse. He said, and I remember it like he’s in front of me saying it right now: “You get the fuck away from us.”

The guy got agitated, starting waving the gun around. My dad tried to grab it. The guy clubbed him in the head. The sound of the metal barrel thunking dully into my dad’s skull was sickening.
My dad went down and didn’t move. I thought he was dead. The guy must have thought the same thing. He panicked, grabbed my mom’s purse, and ran off.

My dad was never the same after that. The gun cracked his skull so he needed eighteen stitches and two surgeries. But worse than that, it broke his will. I don’t know exactly what it was. The feeling of being helpless, of not being able to protect his family. Maybe of realizing you’re not as strong or unstoppable as you think you are.

Either way he was a beaten man after that. Mom and me, we tried to get him back to himself. We thought time would heal him, like it does everything else, but it never did. We did activities he could win, we encouraged him to enter contests, to play sports.

It was almost like he lost the will to live. The doctors said it was nothing physical. They recommended taking him to a psychiatrist. He recommended they shove it. One thing the mugger didn’t take away from him was his bull-headedness.

He remained oddly detached from us until he died of a heart attack when he was sixty-two.

I’ve always been interested in puzzles and mysteries. I read Agatha Christie novels incessantly in high school, always trying to figure out before the end who the killer was. I excelled in math—every problem was a mystery for me to solve.

I don’t know if losing myself in the mysteries was my way of dealing with my father’s detachment. Who can understand how a child’s mind works? I only know that when I think fondly of my childhood it’s because I remember all those stories and puzzles and mysteries I spent so much time solving.

When I was older I had thoughts of entering the FBI, but instead I entered the police academy right after college. I put my time in on the street, and the second I could I went for my shield. I made detective fast, and I’m one of the best in the division.

My clearance rate is an unheard-of seventy four percent. I live the job, which is one of the reasons I do so well. Even when I’m off I’m still thinking about the cases, moving the pieces of the puzzle around in my head until they start to fit.

I figured eventually I’d have a life, like a regular one. Find a wife, make a family, live happily ever after.

My doctor tells me I have less than a year to live now. And suddenly it seems like eventually isn’t going to happen. All that time I thought I’d have—gone in the time it took to get the test results back.

I can’t stop the regret. I try to push it back because it angers me, and anger clouds the mind. I’ve got nothing to regret really. I have the highest case clearance rate in the history of the state. I have more money than I’ll ever need.

But I can’t help thinking that I just never stopped playing cops and robbers. I never grew up. Always thought I had time—

And to make it worse…the year I have to live isn’t going to be a good year. My mind is going to begin to…deteriorate. The doctor made it sound a lot like Alzheimer’s. Least that’s what it sounded like to me.

My mind is what I’m most proud of. It sounds strange, I know. But I’ve worked very hard to become as intelligent as I could. I’m like a body builder who has spent years and years in the gym to perfect his physique, only in my case it’s my mind.

And now some bullshit arbitrary disease is going to take that away from me? Slowly and painfully I’m going to lose who I am, lose what I can do, and I’m not even going to realize it’s happening.

Not if I can help it.

Her name is Lynn Blodgett, and I felt something the first time I saw her. She was living in someone else’s house when a murder was committed two doors up. It turned out to be linked to her and a big nutcase named Doug Richardson, who liked to dress up like a clown and axe people.

I caught him and he was put away in a mental institution. He’s been there now for over two years. He tried to escape twice. The doctor reports say he’s still obsessed with Lynn. It appears her ex-husband convinced Doug that if he killed Lynn then all his mental problems would go away.

I can’t blame him, really. Would I kill to stop this disease from taking my intelligence? Who you got in mind?

Really, though. I had thoughts of asking Lynn out a long time ago, but she was in a relationship then, and so it all passed. Now it’s too late. Much too late.

But there’s something I can do. My last hurrah, so to speak. I can put that psycho in the ground where he’ll never bother Lynn again. I just have to figure out how to do it when he’s locked up in an asylum and I’m out here in the real world.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

August 25th, 2005

Interesting to note that we did indeed hit the chart, but missed the top 10 because of direct-2-dvd sequels. I mean, Stuart Little 3? Bambi 2? American Pie Band Camp?

Damn you, sequels. Damn you to hell...

August 25, 2005

While I'm still waiting to hear the big YES from LG I figured I'd mention why I chose them. You see, we also had an offer from Sony.

I was told by my Producer's Rep that Sony typically sells more units. This is the list of "Top Specialized Renters" from Video Business Weekly:

Title(Label/Distributions) Revenue($ in Millions)
1. 7 Seconds(Sony) $0.51
2. Redneck Comedy Roundoup(LG) $0.47
3. Urban Legends: Bloody Mary(Sony) $0.42
4. Blast(First Look) $0.38
5. Vampire Assassins(LG) $0.26
6. Elvis Has Left The Building(LG) $0.25
7. Zodiac Killer(LG) $0.24
8. Tarzan II(BV) $0.23

I've watched the list for a couple of months, and sure enough, Sony does often have the top spot.

But LG pretty much specializes in horror. They are THE horror distributor in the US. So that's a family I want to join. If FOC does well there and I let them pick up the sequel(and THAT does well), then I'm hoping I can maybe pitch a film to them that they'll fund for something more than the peanuts I've been working with.

So that's my rationale. We'll see how it works out.

And, oh yeah, I want to see FOC on that list.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Guest Post #2 - Mark Lassise

Finally the clown speaks! Mark Lassise himself sent in his thoughts regarding his first memories of the project. Here they are, straight from Brazil(where Mark lives now).

I received a call from Carlyn Davis, a casting agent in Northern Virginia. I had never been called by her before and didn't know she even had me on her radar. After talking with Kevin I realized she didn't. He had called her...
(Kevin note: In my opinion, her agency sucks--it has in my dealings with it)

On the journey to the out-of-the-way hotel being used as an audition location, I remember thinking, “This is it, the one that vaults me into the limelight, the upper echelon of actors, 100's of different characters, Entertainment Tonight, David Letterman and everything else that come with it. All I have to do is go in there and knock it out!"

I was able to jump the line after giving my name. When I entered, Kevin and Rick greeted me and Kevin said, “I hope you can act because you are exactly what I pictured when writing the clown.”

Well, I landed the gig and began crafting Shivers.

When the shoot date arrived I was very excited to jump into this BIG production. Little did I know my idea of BIG was a little BIGGER than reality. The first day started off what is now normal for a first day on a Kangas Production....very frustrating.

My make-up took twice as long, my eyes burnt all day from the contacts and I don't think we shot anything. I also realized our DP, David Munn only had four fingers, Jacky Reres was not afraid of clowns and that this was a total “guerrilla” shoot....
(Kevin Note: Frustrating, sure. But we never spent a day without shooting SOMETHING)

I distinctly remember Rick Ganz started to ruin the movie from day one as well. BUT! Leaving us only us only one way to go...UP!
(Kevin Note: He's kidding. I used to joke with Rick about how he was always ruining my movie)

Paul Kangas began to do my make-up at his house which kept us on schedule. It made driving to
different locations interesting. The two week shoot went as well as low low budget Independent will allow.
(Kevin Note: It was three weeks.)

Kevin was able to put together a decent B horror movie that Lionsgate found and knew they had
a product that would translate into big dollars just with the name and front cover.

I realized half way through that I was killing everyone during the day due to the fact we had very few lights. Strange, a killer clown can stalk through neighborhoods in broad daylight without trouble. In the Kangas world anything is possible and probable.
(Kevin Note: Uh...he only killed 1 person in the day, though he stalked Jacky/Rick once. I think Mark's delirious from the Brazillian heat)

Then came the theater...our best location. We would arrive after the box office closed and all the employees left except for James, Kevin's friend and projectionist. He allowed us access to the theater in exchange for Shivers killing him on screen. My second favorite killing after the decapitation, of course.

Chasing the always desirable Jacky Reres through a dark theater...good times!

The production ended and I moved to New York to continue my acting journey. Two years later Kevin sent me the script for FOC2... to be continued

Below is the picture that drew me to Mark originally, which he HATES. But that is the mental picture of Doug Richardson that was in my head LONG before I ever saw it...

Thursday, January 7, 2010

July 2nd, 2005

Jacky and Rick has this in common;
their favorite parts to act were when they were lying in bed.
So, the point of the last couple of posts is this:

When you're writing spec scripts, the sky's the limit.

When you're in low-budget land you have to write to the level you can afford to shoot. And as I just showed, we haven't even glanced at story considerations and we've already spent almost $25,000.

It's hard to write a great screenplay, as is demonstrated by countless films every week. It's even harder to write a great screenplay that you can afford to shoot.

Which is where I am now. I'm writing the sequel to my second film(that's about to get picked up--the company wants a sequel) and I'm scouting locations before I've written the scene in question. I need a place to set the final scene, so we went looking at places we can get access to. Places that are visually interesting and/or add to our production value by using them.

And I'd be lying if I didn't tell you it's a bitch. It's restrictive. It's more difficult than just following the story where it leads you.

But if you're a low-budget filmmaker then you do what you have to do to continue making films.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Really? No followers?

I'm gearing up to get back to updating these blogs but it keeps showing me that these blogs have no followers...

Wouldn't you like to be notified when the blog gets updated? Start following! :)