Director’s Update

1.25.10

Well here it is Monday…again. Yup, still here in the great state of California…still waiting for permits to go make a film. God is still driving and is still not handing over the direction guide, the itinerary or the timetable. Oh well…so we keep waiting. I keep working on the shot list…almost done. I know, how many times have you heard that? Well this time it is true. I just picked up a super close rough of the poster one-sheet from Jamie. To say, “she nailed it”…would be a colossal understatement. She is truly an amazing artist and we are lucky to have her…and we will have no issue using every creative ounce of energy she has to give.

The image is really cool….it speaks to the film! It tells you that you have to think and act…this will not be a passive viewing experience. You will have no other choice but to engage. Jamie captures this same spirit in the image she came up with. Here is how it happened: I asked her to be involved. She agreed. I gave her some artwork and a ton of ideas and babble. She made a few passes at what I was referencing and they were cool…but I needed something a little different. I then asked Jamie just do whatever she want to do…no thoughts from me, no forcing any concept or design element. Of course, then she came up with this incredible image that IS the film. Over years of directing and working with animals, I have learned that my best offense is to hire an amazing team and know when to step back and let them do what they do best. Jamie is an amazing talent with great [and similar] sensibilities to my own. I had hoped she would hit a home run…and she did. You guys will be the first [after Matthew and Brent] to see the image I am speaking of.

My idea is to go to a cool printing house in Seattle that does almost all of the printing for the posters that I collect [http://www.mondotees.com/ ] called D&L printing and have them make a run of 50 or 100 that Jamie would sign and number and we could sell. They would become highly prized collectors items after people see her work and she becomes even more famous than she is now!!! So, if I can get the powers that be to do that and we make some of these, would you guys be interested in purchasing? I am a poster collector [read nut!] and have probably close to 300 posters…and I can tell you that this image is right up there with the best of what I have…and what I have seen but can’t afford!! So, if this would be interesting to any of you, drop us a note and let us know. I will preview the image here in a week or two…so stay tuned.

So back to Monday…I am doing day job stuff today. Abe has emailed a couple of thoughts this morning. We are still researching the idea of shooting this film in whole or part on 35mm 2 perf. I guess he has set up a screening of tests at Kodak for next week. That is cool. Format is so important to the overall feel of the film. If the format is wrong, then the texture can’t come through. That is a problem. Texture, the feel of the final product is crucial. I want people to have a reaction to the film. I want them motivated to action by what they have just seen. If they can’t feel it, feel India, feel the heat or the wind or the texture of the country…that will hinder them having a full experience in the theater. Abe gets that and is still researching…Film is film…film is still the best for texture and depth…unless you have money, then digital can get close to that…[see David Fincher’s last film, or maybe even last two films] …but since we don’t have a ton of money, we have to start as close to the feel that we want as possible.

Let’s see…what else? Not much else with the film…so let me use this moment to share a little personal info about what I did all weekend. I recently got married [just over a year ago now] to an amazing woman. She truly is. Way too good for me. Anyway, we were struggling a little bit in our new marriage and one of my wife’s friends suggested we take this 4-day course called MARRIAGE BOOT CAMP. I know! I had the same reaction. No thanks! Not for me. But of course we ended up committing to go.

THE LINE I ACTUALLY WROTE NEXT HAS BEEN EDITED BY MY WIFE FOR CONTENT…:)

So, we end up heading down to Irvine for Thursday thru Sunday. When we get there Thursday morning, we have to fill out some papers…one of them is, “what annoys me about my wife”…Yahoo! Now, “I can tell someone who will hear me and listen”…is what I am thinking. Oh was I in for a wake up call! The next page is a long list of rules for the weekend as well as a list of things we agree to. One of them says that we will not get violent with the staff or something to that effect!!! WHAT! I walk over to my wife, who clearly can tell I have no desire to be here already and seeing my reaction sure does not help. I tell her this better not be a ton of crazy people yelling at each other…all she can do is smile. Not sure why I thought she would be able to determine that or how she would have any idea what it was we were about to walk into… but I did hold her responsible. Then to make it worse, it seemed like every other couple filling out this paperwork, looked like they actually hated their spouse! Not just a mild disregard…but an all out “get away from me…I can’t stand to be next to you” hatred or disdain. So…I am thinking this is going to suck.

To top it off, after we filled out everything and were waiting…a woman peeks her head out of the room and yells at the top of her lungs TWO MINUTES!!! Now, I am really miserable…I spent four years in the military and I am not interested in going back. So, we go inside a room with ten or so other couples (the ones who look like they hate each other). The guy – a bald fellow who looks kind of unhappy – tells us to turn off our phones…NOT SILENCE, THEM TURN THEM OFF!! So the first thing I write in my little journal they gave me is this: “This is my idea of hell. I do not want to go to hell.”

Cut to the end of the weekend…when hearts, minds and marriages were repaired like God himself came into the room and personally talked with each of us. Damage was repaired. Hurts were addressed and healing was started. This past weekend changed my life and the way I see my wife. It changed my heart. It changed the way I listen to her. It opened my eyes in a powerful way. Here is my disclaimer: If any of you know me personally, you will be thinking to yourself right now – “what happened to my friend Jon…the guy who does not endorse anything….the guy who does not open up to anyone…the guy who won’t even wear labels on his clothes…the guy who sits in the back of the room or on the far end of the aisle to avoid people he doesn’t know.” Well, I am still here. Only, I have had an eye opening experience that will change my marriage from okay to amazing. They gave me an incredible set of tools to make this change last a lifetime. Suffice it to say…Ron and Tina Konkin are wizards and seriously have made a difference in my marriage. So, if anyone reading this knows anyone who could use a little marriage or personal tune up…these people are the people! Stop being a baby and call them. I kid you not, the couples that looked like hated each other when they walked in, left laughing, hugging and holding hands…excited to get home! Looking forward to the day to day of life and trying out their new found love for each other and using their new found set of tools, compliments of God (via Ron and Tina). They are Christians, but this course is not a “Christian” course. It is a life-changing course…and a heck of a lot of fun!! Clearly, I am recommending it highly for anyone who feels it is relevant. BTW, Ron and Tina have an amazing story of forgiveness and healing themselves, and are all around great people…plus, like I said, they care and are really fun to be around.

Well once again, I will not go back and edit or re-read this for fear I will edit it down to a few sentences that serve no real purpose. I will keep you posted on the poster. Please let us know if you would be interested in one [once you see it of course!] and promise to continue to praying for us…for the permit process, the cast, the crew, the country of India and all of the little children effected by this horrible thing called trafficking.
Be well
J

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