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Monday, September 26, 2005
Giddy greetings, my friends,
As you hopefully know by now, the Twisted Spine "Micro" Film Festival was held last weekend in Cleveland, Ohio. Love & Plutonium was an official selection--our first film festival and also the first for our production company, Loose Change Entertainment. We had 2 carpoolers along for the ride, Melissa Zinn (the "Dark Angel") and her husband Sid Redlin (our artist). We embarked from Berkley around 8:30 am on Sunday morning and made it to Cleveland in just around 3 hours. We drove by the festival location (a Knights of Columbus hall), were fairly impressed with how full the parking lot was, and decided we had time to get some lunch before making our grand entrance. And grand it would be, for you see, all 4 of us dressed in all black, as if we were trying to make some artistic statement or something (check out the photos for proof). Anyway, we hit the local Wendy's and headed back to the festival. On our way we saw what could only be interpreted as an auspicious sign--an establishment called "Liberty Pizza", with a big Statue of Liberty in the middle of the sign (you see, Jacquie played a character called "Little Liberty" in Love & Plutonium, which we were about to go view--try to keep up here). We stopped and snapped a couple of pictures of Jacquie in front of the sign and continued back to the K of C hall (not to be confused with the KFC we bypassed for lunch).
Our entrance to the festival was, as previously suggested, grand. As we walked through the door, one of the Twisted Spine guys said, "You're Little Liberty!" Yes, they recognized Jacquie, which was a fairly good sign indicating that at least one person had actually watched our movie. Turns out his name was Kevin and he and the rest of the Twisted Spiners were very excited that we made the trip from Detroit. We talked with Kevin for a while and then wandered around the tables/booths that were set up, mingling and checking out some decent, some bad indie films that other people had for sale. We watched a couple of short films on the festival schedule and then one of the Spiners approached me and asked if we'd like to set up shop on one of their vacant vendor tables. Fortunately we had brought a stash of shrink-wrapped DVDs and a movie poster, so we spread everything out on the table and began to peddle. We only had a few minutes of peddling before our movie would begin showing, so we pretty much abandoned our table and went in to watch Love & Plutonium and gauge the audience's reaction. As we meandered, one lady came up to us holding her copy of the festival program. "Eighty-five minutes, huh?" she queried. "I dunno. I'm a pretty harsh critic. I'll probably fall asleep." Encumbered with that dose of good cheer, we sat down.
We needn't have worried, because from the opening credits, that lady was laughing uproariously. She and another fellow in particular were enjoying the wit, and I might even be so bold as to suggest that we got a better reaction in Cleveland than we did at the Emagine premiere. Not by much, maybe not at all, but there did seem to be more laughter on this day. And for that we were very grateful. There was a big cheer when Mrs. Medlo does her thing to Holly near the end of the movie, and some generous applause when all was said and done.
As we walked back to the impromptu Love & Plutonium/Loose Change Entertainment table, several people stopped us to congratulate us and/or offer their opinions of what we could/should have done differently. Fortunately none of them involved recasting the role of Hank. The lady who so ominously challenged our movie beforehand now came up and introduced herself to us as Katrina. "Napolean Dynamite has nothing on you!" she declared. "My sides and my face are aching!" Words of beauty. I may have them etched on my gravestone, if I decide to not be cremated. We talked with her for a while longer, and sold several DVDs to Katrina and other festival goers. I'm telling you, these people were great--both the Twisted Spiners and the random patrons. We will definitely take a larger Loose Change contingent next year, and hopefully set up a table/booth for the duration of the weekend. It's a great place to move some merchandise.
We stuck around until 5:30, talking to people and checking out more goodies, and then it was time for the awards ceremony. They had three awards to, well, award--best screenplay, best short film and best feature film. We hadn't entered the screenplay competition, and our film was not "short", so we really only had one shot at glory. We had had a great time at the festival, and were going to leave happy and fulfilled whether we won an award or not. I certainly wasn't expecting to win; I mean, I'm generally a confident person and I know we have a funny movie, but when you're up against 15 or more feature-length films, your odds are not that favorable. So when Ritch of Twisted Spine said, "And the winner of the Best Feature Film is... Love & Plutonium!", we were all pretty floored. Yes, you read that correctly: we won the "Best Feature Film" award! In fact, here's the graphic to prove it:
I mean, you don't just whip up a graphic like that in Photoshop! You gotta earn it, baby! Er... :)
Jacquie and I went up to the stage to accept our award. Neither of us could stop smiling as we received a nice round of applause. We both said a few words, I think I thanked Twisted Spine for their selection, a few people took some photos, and that's about all I remember. What I do know is that this award belongs to everyone involved with the production, from Jebby, Dano and AEG, to the entire cast and crew. Without your efforts this movie would not have gotten made and Twisted Spine would have had to award the "Best Feature Film" plaque to some other movie. Thank you and God bless you all!
The ride home, while filled with some torrential downpours, was a great big high for the four of us. We called a bunch of people and shouted "WE WON!" into the speakerphone. We capped off the night at Chili's in Dearborn, where we ate a little, imbibed a little, and generally wound down. And that's about all I feel like typing right now. For other first-hand accounts of the day, please see Jacquie's blog, Melissa's blog and Sid's blog on MySpace.
For now, I will reiterate my sincere thanks to you all. I'm humbled and honored to have the "Best Feature Film" plaque in my possession, but you can all come look at it and even hold it whenever you want, because it belongs to all of us!
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
As some of you may know, my band Elixir has announced its "retirement". It's an amicable retirement, and we'll all be pursuing other musical interests and stuff. Anyway, we are playing our last 4 gigs this weekend, and as we have some inventory left over, I've decided to offer our one and only CD, Love Goes Boom, for sale on the Shop page. Only $10.00 will get you this handsome disc, which includes such hits as "Sometimes Love Goes Boom", which as you may recall is featured in Love & Plutonium! Get your copy today while supplies last. I'll even autograph it for you! What a deal!
We are still excited about the Twisted Spine festival coming up in a week and a half. We'll be heading out on Sunday the 25th around 8:30 am, which will put us in Cleveland around noon or so for our 2:30 pm screening. You're still welcome to carpool with us. Just let us know. Come one, come all!
Saturday, September 3, 2005
Love & Plutonium has been selected for the Twisted Spine "Micro" Film Festival! Yes, this is the festival that I alluded to in the previous diary entry. It will be held on Saturday and Sunday, September 24 and 25, in Cleveland, Ohio. We are ecstatic about being selected. It is definitely a big step for the movie and for our production company, Loose Change Entertainment.
Love & Plutonium is scheduled to be screened at 2:30 pm on Sunday. Then there is an awards ceremony at 5:45 that evening. Jacquie and I are definitely going on Sunday, and probably sticking thru the awards ceremony (you know, just in case!). If anyone is interested in attending, please let us know. Admission to the festival is free; however, gas is not. Therefore we'll try to work out some kind of car pool if you want to come with.
Thursday, September 1, 2005
Ja, hello mein freunds,
Just a quick little update as September descends upon us. Love & Plutonium has been listed on Superheroes Lives, a web site dedicated to "live action movies based on comics characters or just superheroes movies". It's good to be noticed, especially since this web site seems to be based in Italy!
We're also waiting to hear on a couple of film festivals. We have a very good feeling on one in Ohio, but I will wait to post anything until it's official.
Remember, you can always check the Press and Links pages to find out where we've been mentioned in the news or on the web. Just an FYI. And of course this Production Diary will give you the deep scoop as soon as it happens!
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Last updated on February 04, 2014.