Been a long time since my last update again, but better check in to document where I’m up to especially as 2014 is coming to a close. Looking back, it’s been a very productive year creatively. I’ve starred in 3 plays and written 1, starred in 2 short films one of which I wrote and directed, and… as always, continued writing my novel almost every (working) day of the week. I want more next year please, only improving each time.
To recap what I’ve been doing since my last post: After coming back from Twelfth Night I had a couple of weeks off, where I just wrote my novel and relaxed. getting back to normality was a nice break, and I had a week in Cyprus with my girlfriend in a lovely health resort, where all we did was relax, read, eat excellent food, meditate and do yoga. It was amazing, and while I was there I read the Tony Robbins book ‘Awaken The Giant Within’. Now, I’m a bit of a sucker for self-help books, because I love personal progression. If I can improve any area of my life, then I’d happily read a 600 page book even just to glean one nugget of information that strikes a chord with me. Well, this book struck about a million chords. It was spectacular, and made me realise that I needed to get back to my roots. I needed to get back into film making.
Ever since I was a kid and saw films like Back to the Future and Terminator 2, I wanted to make films. I started out wanting to be a stunt man, because the best bits in films for me were the action sequences where the main character was flung through a window as a bomb went off. What a fun way to spend the day doing that? As I got older, I realised I wanted to be an actor, because it was the actor who was the person’s story I was following, and they were the ones having all the fun, really. Older still, I realised the story wasn’t that of the actors, but the director’s. They made all the decisions and told people where to stand. That’s what I wanted to do. And eventually, having drilled down to ground level, I realised it was all to do with the story, and the writer was ultimately responsible for the exciting journey that people go on as an audience. Anyway, this love came back in full force while I was in Cyrprus, so when I got back I went online and bought myself a Black Magic Pocket Camera.
I’d been looking at one of these babies for a while, but never pulled the trigger mainly through a fear of spending that much money (approx £700 for just the body), but also because if I did buy it I’d have to actually do something with it. But coming back, reenvigorated with a desire to film again, I went ahead and bought it, along with every other piece of kit I needed to make a short film. I spent just over £2000 in total, and started playing with my new toys straight away. The only problem was, I didn’t have anything to film. Cue me digging around in my old script folder.
A couple of years ago I’d written a comedy sketch for me and my mate Dave called ‘Ready?’ about a couple of world war 2 soldiers about to go into battle. I dug it out, dusted it off and read it. It wasn’t bad. The ending needed changing, but everything else was pretty decent. Quite funny, I thought. It was a very static short, being a sketch, so the shoot wouldn’t have been a complicated one. I got in touch with a friend, Chris, who I met on Twelfth Night and is an editor/cameraman. I asked if he wanted to shoot it and he said yes. I got in touch with Dave. He said yes. I asked my mate Martyn to be the boom operator. He said yes, and within a week we were on schedule to shoot ‘Ready?’ … and we did. I won’t go into detail here, maybe save it for a later blog post but the shoot went well, and the final cut is… READY. I’ll be entering it into film festivals as of tomorrow (1st Jan).
Other things I’ve been upto are:
1) I registered a production company, Typecast Productions, which all my latest offerings will come under (website: http://www.typecastproductions.com)
2) I got confirmation of the performance dates of my play, Millionaires Anonymous, which will be performed in the Unity Theatre on the 3rd, 4th and 5th of July 2015. Still a way off, but plenty of time to prepare.
3) After filming Ready I also took a small part in a short film by Purplecoat Productions (whom I’ve done my last 3 plays with) which was filmed over 6 weeks, but I was only needed for a couple of days. It’s a com/zom movie and great fun to be part of as always.
As for my novel? I’m still writing it, almost 70% of the way through my second draft and it’s really coming together quite nicely. I was on target for an xmas finish, but it will most likely be spring next year now with all the other stuff I’ve been doing.
My main problem is now I’ve got all this camera gear, it’s staring up at me like a begging dog. I’ve also got an idea for another short, I just need to find the time to start writing it. Soon, laddy. Soon.