REMAINDERED will be screened on Saturday, June 16, at 9 pm at the RiverPark Center in Owensboro...the town where the film was shot. The director, cast, and key crew will be on hand afterwards for a panel discussion and Q&A.
The movie is being shown as part of the International Mystery Writers Festival... and will be screened along with MURDER IN KENTUCY and BUMSICLE. All three films star Todd Reynolds as a homicide detective who is a lot sharper than he seems.
We're now deep into the sound mix and color correction. I hope to have a finished film by the end of the month...well in advance of our screening at the International Mystery Writers Festival June 14-17 in Owensboro.
Two weeks ago, we finished production on BUMSICLE, the sequel to our highly-acclaimed short REMAINDERED, which I wrote and directed.
I had a fantastic time making the movie, in no small part thanks to the terrific cast (Todd Reynolds, Rick Montgomery Jr., Sadia Brimm, Marcus Porter, Patrick Litteken, and Jared Collins) and the professionalism, efficiency and enthusiasm of the hard-working crew, led by producers J. Laine Nunn and Roxi Witt, assistant director Rachael Nunn and Director of Photograph Marc Gurevitch. You can see a bunch of behind-the-scenes photos and production stills here.
As much as I enjoyed making Remaindered, and as proud as I am of it, this was a smoother experience all around (despite a tornado hitting town in middle of our shoot!) and the footage looks far more polished and professional. The big reason for that is that we took a enormous step up in equipment and resources. We had two RED cameras (a RED One and Scarlet), a professional D.P., and a full lighting/grip package this time, all thanks to Firelight Entertainment Group.
But I believe the key to the success of the shoot was the thorough pre-production planning, from the smallest props to my shot list (I provided sketches weeks in advance of how I'd shoot/cover each scene and I stuck to'em)...and the tight organization that continued until the final shot.
We also pre-rigged some of the key locations the day before shooting, which significantly cut down on time spent lighting the sets and allowed us to move faster that we would have otherwise. And I spent a few hours before production rehearsing with the actors, so they knew the staging, and had their performances down, before they got in front of the cameras.
Because of all that, we were able to handle the inevitable, unexpected problems...like a tornado forcing us to seek shelter early on our first day and, in one scene, an error in the settings of our "B" camera that cost us some shots... and still stay on track without losing much time.
In fact, we managed to get all of our work done without going significantly over schedule until the final day, but that overtime had more to do with having to strike our sets, clean up, and pack up everything before moving to our next location, some distance away, for our last shot.
The shoot was tiring, but I think I can safely say it was incredibly fun for everybody involved. I loved directing and I am eager to do it again. So I hope Bumsicle is a success on the Festival circuit and that it gives us the opportunity to bring back Det. Bud Flanek for more adventures. My hope is that these shorts might do well enough to inspire a web series featuring Flanek that I could write & direct...but that's a longshot.
The short story REMAINDERED is now available as a standalone on the Kindle and the Nook. This special edition includes a link that will take you to a private, streaming video of the movie version of the tale:
Kevin Dangler is a once-famous author desperate to regain his lost glory while traveling the back-roads of middle America, selling remaindered, fifth-editions of his first book out of the trunk of his car. When he meets his ultimate fan...who might be his salvation...or a novel way to die.
This story was an Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine Readers Choice finalist and has previously appeared in the anthologies "Three Ways to Die" and "Top Suspense." The movie, written and directed by Lee Goldberg, is now playing on the festival circuit, and has been honored as an official selection of the Myrtle Beach International Film Festival, the Beverly Hills Shorts Festival, the Beaufort International Film Festival, the Big Island Film Festival, and the Derby City Film Festival, where Sebrina Siegel, one of the stars, was a finalist for Best Actress.
REMAINDERED screened today and received a very enthusiastic reaction from the audience. That was nice, but I have to say we're up against some stiff competition. I've seen a lot of great shorts this week...and every single one that I saw today was very well done, particularly THIEF, about a little boy who befriends a young Saddam Hussein in 1959 and then comes face-to-face with him again in 2003. It's not going to be easy for the judges or the audience to pick a best short from among so many fine films.
Before the screening, I spent some time on the beach. I glanced to my left and was startled to see Harlan Coben staring back at me. Alas, it was not the man himself but his enormous photo on the back of a hardcover book that a tourist was reading. I took a picture of the tourist, which I emailed to Harlan, then chatted with the guy, who was very nice. He's a salesman for a big drug company that is rewarding its best reps with an all-expense-paid trip to Hawaii that also includes elaborate banquets by the beach, tons of free tours & activities, cash money for expenses, and goodie bags in their rooms each day stuffed with things like Raybans and cameras. I should have been a Viagra salesman instead of a writer.
After the screening, I drove up to Waimea to Huli Sue's Barbeque. Their ribs aren't bad but what I really went up there for was their incredible Banana Cream pie...which may just be the best Banana Cream Pie on earth.
Then it was back to the Fairmont Orchid, where I hunkered down to work on MONK...well, that was the intent, instead here I am writing this post.
Tomorrow is the Golden Honu Awards Brunch, a concert, and the Best of the Fest screening. In between, I'm going to try to squeeze in some more lazing around.
I've been having a great time at the Big Island Film Festival on the Big Island of Hawaii. I arrived on Wednesday night, showered, and hurried over to the Mayor's reception, where I chatted with some of the other film-makers, who have come from all over the U.S. and a few from overseas. Then I headed over to the Shops at Mauna Lani for an outdoor screening of a handful of short films. You couldn't beat the venue...watching movies under the stars with a gentle sea breeze. The films themselves were well-made but suffered from very, very predictable, by-the-numbers story-telling.
I played hookie from the Festival during the day on Day 2. You'd have to be insane to fly all the way to paradise to stay indoors when it's gorgeous outside. So I hung out at the beach, where the sand and pavement were so hot, you could get third degree burns if you walked barefoot. Just about eveyrone has a Kindle, which is frustrating, because I can't tell what strangers are reading any more.
I intended to do some writing, but failed. I swam, I walked, I read, I ate, I sweated. A perfect day. After dinner, I went to the night-time screenings, held under the stars at the Fairmont Orchid Plantation House. The films this time were much better than the previous evening...particularly the short COLD SORE and the hilarious, uniquely Hawaiian feature GET A JOB...but is there a rule somewhere that there has to be at least two zombie movies at every film festival? I have totally over-dosed on zombie movies.
My plan today is to do some writing (I can feel my deadline like a physical presence in the room) out on the lanai overlooking the water, take a swim, a long walk, and then attend the evening screening again. REMAINDERED plays tomorrow...
I am off to Hawaii this morning to attend the Big Island Film Festival, where REMAINDERED is in competition with 62 other great films from around the world. I'm really looking forward to the trip...and wish our cast and crew could come along, too. I'll be sure to report back and let you know how the film is received by the audience at the luxurious Fairmont Orchid & Mauna Lani resorts on the Big Island.
Great news! REMAINDERED has been accepted by another festival (our fifth, since the film was completed in October, for those of you who are counting). We've been selected by the 6th Annual Myrtle Beach International Film Festival, named one of the 25 best festivals MovieMaker Magazine in 2009 for independent film makers. It runs April 19-23 in Myrtle Beach. We'll post more details as soon as we have them.
We've just learned that REMAINDERED has been chosen as one of the 63 films from around the world that will be screened at the 6th annual Big Island Film Festival, May 11-15, at the Mauna Lani Resort. The Festival was picked by Moviemaker Magazine as one of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the nation and we're eager to find out for ourselves if they deserve it. What a nice, tax deductible excuse to go to Hawaii.
This weekend REMAINDERED is screening as an official selection of the 6th Annual Beverly Hills Shorts Festival. Tonight was the opening party and we had a great time chatting with the other film-makers at the event. It looks like a very diverse and entertaining line-up of films. The screening for REMAINDERED have already sold out and I'm eager to see it with an audience again on Saturday. The awards ceremony is Sunday and we'll be sure to let you know the film does.
In the mean time, we've entered three more festivals, so we're now in consideration at over 30 festivals nationwide over the coming year.