Updates this month.

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Daniel Von Bargen

There has been so many depressing news stories lately from the death of Leonard Nimoy to Harrison Ford’s plane crash. Personally one of my favorite actors Danielle Von Bargen (Seinfeld, Super Troopers, Malcolm in the Middle,O’ Brother Where Art Thou) recently passed away. I was a huge fan of his and about seven years back I was able to hire him to act in one of my feature films London Betty. He was a kind and generous man. He let me ask him a million questions about what it was like to work with Robert Rodriquez in The Faculty or The Coen Brothers or what it was like on the set of Super Troopers. Everyone on the set was super excited to work with him and we all took pictures with him. After the film wrapped we all went out and he bought us all dinner. I’ll always be grateful to him and to Clint Howard also for being part of that film (Clint Narrated). It turned out that London Betty was DVB’s last film and they wrote about it in Variety this week. I’m very sad about it but he had been fighting illness for a while and so I believe he is at peace. So farewell and thank you Daniel Von Bargen. Variety Article

Leonard Nimoy

Leonard Nimoy I never got to meet but Star Trek was such a huge part of my upbringing and I believe it helped to make millions of fans like me, kinder to everyone. As a code of ethics or a way to live your life Star Trek is as good as anything out there. For instance, “The needs of the many out way the needs of the few or the one.” Is something that Nimoy commonly said in Star Trek.

Mark of the Beast movie on Amazon on Demand

Well Mark of the Beast a film that I created back in 2012 and is finally available in HD on Amazon on Demand, Google Play, Youtube. It took a long time to happen but I’m glad I pushed that extra mile to make it happen. Speaking of morals, the Rudyard Kipling’s story that my film is based on is to me actually an anti-torture film so for all the films attempted scares, we aimed to make a tale or morality. Mark of the Beast in HD on Amazon on Demand!

VHS Massacre currently being scored.

Timothy Kulig, the composer for the new doc VHS Massacre (directed by Ken Powell and I) is banging away at the keys creating a fantastic score for what I believe is one of the only feature length documentary’s that deals with the decline of physical media and how it has effected Indie and cult films. We are both excited to see what new energy he will bring to the project. I’ve known Tim for over 20 years and it’s great to have him on board. A little look at a segment of VHS Massacre.

New York Cine Podcast

The podcast is going well with 25,000 listens this month. We were ranked the #3 TV/FILM podcast of 2014 on Podbean.com. Ken Powell my co-host has been taking the show to a new level with the addition of 4 cameras shoots on several of our segments. We started doing some video game reviews as well on the show. Here’s the newest one.

Going back to College

I’ve been hitting the books lately trying to finish off another college degree. I’m 38 and I don’t think of that as old but it’s been challenging to work full time, take two college courses, run a podcast and finish a feature film. So far it’s been going good. The work is hard and if I think about how long it will take to get the degree it becomes a bit overwhelming but it’s a “one step in front of the other” kind of a thing. In the next few months I’ll actually have an announcement about a new project. It’s going to be a very fun B-movie type of thing. Can’t wait to talk about it. Over the past month or so it seems like there has been some hard times but it reminds us all to treat each other better and to appreciate the time we have. To anyone who has ever read these ranting, thanks ya’ll!

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VHS Transfers

I’ve been working on the cut of the  VHS Massacre documentary (A doc about cult films and the decline of physical media).  It’s getting to a point where I can see where the rough edges are. It will take some months before I can cut out the fat, get the b-role in place and add in a few last movie clips. So some of VHS tapes that we’ve scavenged NYC to find needed to be transferred and digitized. I had to transfer from VHS, to this old Mini DV camera and then capture via firewire, with a 400 to 800 firewire adapter on an old iMac so I can edit on a new iMac. There are many years of technology represented in this transfer to get this horrible VHS footage but it was worth it? I mean, it was worth it! It was kind of fun actually. I think the doc will come out well. I get a bit of a sinking feeling when I think of doing the deliverables once we distribute the film (Master Copies, Dialogue lists, paper work, M & E mix and so on). I’ve done this on several films throughout the years and it is a horrible process but is is required to put the film out there. First things first, I have to finish the film.

10382243_310907562404005_2084730408580688108_oNot much recent news on my last film Rudyard Kipling’s Mark of the Beast but I did stumble across an article on which Phil Hall star of Mark of the Beast speaks briefly on what is was like to be on the set of Best. Read Here.

 

Mark of the Beast Wins at Worldfest Houston!

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After he received the WorldFest Remi Award, Ridley Scott commented “WorldFest is in the business of validating excellence!”

This Saturday Worldfest Houston will make the announcement that Rudyard Kipling’s Mark of the Beast, a  feature film that I directed with Jon Gorman will receive a Remi award from Worldfest Houston. For me personally this is a sea change for me as a filmmaker. Many of you may feel like I’m being dramatic but you have to understand where I’m coming from. After years of entering film festivals like Sundance, Slamdance, Tribeca, Worldfest, New York Horror and other large festivals, I finally have cracked it. Don’t get me wrong over the past 15 years I’ve  I accrued 16 film festivals wins, from places like Silk City, Bare Bones International, Connecticut Screening Room, New York B-movie FF, New Haven Underground and other places and I’ve been an official selection at California Indie Fest, New York International, Boston Underground, Hoboken International FF and probably 20 others festivals. However the Remi is important to me mainly because Worldfest Houston is one of the oldest film festivals in the world and it’s alumni is incredible. For instance Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, The Coen Brothers, Ridley Scott, Robert Rodriguez, Spike Lee, Oliver Stone, Ang Lee and David Lynch all won there first awards at Worldfest Houston.

The festival has been around since the 1960’s and I would call it the Roger Corman of film festivals. It’s not Sundance but they can spot talent like no other festival out there. Now I realize just because I won a Remi doesn’t mean that suddenly I’m a big deal or something but to be a part of this legacy means so much to me at this point in my career. Most of those famous filmmakers were probably ten years younger than I am now when they won their awards at Worldfest, but to be honest I don’t care. I realize I’ll never be Ridley Scott but I know now that I am good enough at what I do to be celebrated by one of the longest running film festivals in history that has a tremendous ability for spotting talent.

This win allows me to say fare well to Mark of Beast and lay it to rest knowing that I did everything in my power to push the film. I submitted the film in Blu-ray format and it occurred to me that the folks at Worldfest Houston are the only ones that ever saw my film at the resolution and quality that it was meant to be seen in. Thanks to everyone involved in the making of Mark of the Beast, for anyone who has ever edited and released a film they probably know that the film shoot is the easiest part and it’s not easy at all. It’s good to know it was worth it at least for me.

Maverick Movie Awards! Mark of the Beast gets one win and two nominations!

MMAThis just in from the Maverick Movie Awards! Our film Mark of the Beast gets one win and two nominations! Leigh Radziwon (LeighFX) wins BEST SPECIAL EFFECTS MAKE-UP, Debbie Rochon picks up a BEST ACTRESS nomination and Jon Gorman and I (Thomas Edward Seymour) get a BEST DIRECTOR NOMINATION!  Thanks so much to the cast and crew for helping to make a great little horror flick and thanks to the Maverick Movie Awards for recognizing all of us! If you get a chance have a look at the Maverick Movie Awards Alumni List. From Chris Gore to Philip Glass to Moby, it’s a pretty amazing group to be among.

“…The Maverick Movie Awards puts credibility and intrigue back into the word ‘maverick.’”
– Les Claypool, Frontman of Primus, Music Producer, Film Director, Novelist, Winemaker, and Fisherman
“The MMA is the real deal. When you all say ‘it’s a level playing field…from a maverick point-of-view,’ I believe it.”
– Anthony E. Griffin, Moviemaker and Co-Founder of Thriller! Chiller! Film Festival