Archive for February, 2009

The Wrestler is the first movie that made me wake up sore the next day. Watching Mickey Rourke on screen had some kind of psychosomatic effect on me where I felt the pain of a lifetime of wrestling. Just as pro wrestling sometimes blurs the lines of fake and reality (even staged body slams have [...]

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Genevieve Jolliffe & Chris Jones have written several books which are packed full of useful infomation for filmmakers including The Guerilla Film Makers Handbook which weighs in at 720 pages. Here’s one little Q&A  from the book.
Q-What single piece of advice would you offer?
Dov S. S. Simens: Read 200 scripts this year. If you don’t [...]

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Maybe I should have said “How to increase your odds of winning an Academy Award.” But who wants to read an article on that? Regardless, I think I have the secret to winning an Academy Award. (Not that I would know first hand—though I did win an Addy Award last week for a commercial I [...]

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I thought  Taken was quite a good film and I wondered how the writers Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen worked as a pair. They come from different backgrounds. Kamen an American who is best known for writing The Karate Kid lives in New York and owns a winery in California. Besson the Frenchman who [...]

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Over the weekend I saw the movie Taken and it made me think back to a few film that feature a son or daughter who disappears—The Searchers with John Wayne,  Ransom with Mel Gibson, and Hardcore with George C. Scott. 
Hardcore was written by Paul Schrader who also wrote Taxi Driver, Ragging Bull, and The Mosquito [...]

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It would be hard to find more of a contrast to the slums of Mumbi, India than the wealth and beauty of Telluride, Colorado. But that is part of the ride that Danny Boyle has been on the last year or so. And last night in Hollywood he collected an Academy Award for best director. [...]

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It only takes about 13 seconds to make an Oscar. Make, not win.
And the 13 1/2 inch tall and 8 1/2 pound statuettes are made in Chicago.   And just in case you wondered, they’re made of a gold-plated  high-grade pewter alloy known as britannia. It only takes about 2 days to make the 50 or so Oscars [...]

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In her book Advanced Screenwriting Linda Seger talks about “the ever-present identity theme.” She explains that some examples would be be finding one’s identity (Dead Poets Society), holding on to one’s identity despite oppression (Erin Brockovich), and finding one’s identity within a sport (Rocky).  
“If we look at some of the Academy Award winners of the [...]

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Since the 81st Oscars are this Sunday I thought I’d mention the only screenwriting books I am aware of the comes from the perspective of screenplays that are Oscar winners. Dr. Linda Seger is a much respected script consultant and the author of several books on screenwriting including Academy Awards Advanced Screenwriting: Raising Your Script [...]

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Every once in a while on a shoot I get to meet some cool people. Even in Iowa.
Such was the case yesterday in Moravia, Iowa (pop. 713)  when I walked into a 110 year-old barn where Jim & Shaun (pictured) Wubben make custom choppers. PB Choppers manufactures motorcycles from the frame to the finished product and in [...]

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