Thought Diarrhea

First, all apologies to anyone who might actually care for my being so remiss on updating or posting anything on this blog. To be honest, sometimes to me blogging is simply just a way to have far more thought out and wordy Facebook status updates.  It often seems that calling it “blogging” creates a sort of bubble that allows a sufferer of “thought diarrhea”  (aka blogger) to attribute a false sense of legitimacy with a dash of pretentiousness akin to what I see all the time in any creative community. I have done so myself more than I’ll ever admit. Many creative people who say I’m an “artist” or I’m a “musician”  or I’m a “writer” or worst of all I’m a “filmmaker” and now throw in I’m a “blogger” find that doing so is an awesome way to clothe one’s self in a fiction suit of validation.  With all of the above monikers, the substance and output are what makes someone a real artist, musician,writer,  filmmaker, or blogger, and that output is what separates the real from the full-of-shitters.

Example of a "creative artist" who doesn't actually do anything.

Example of a “creative artist” who doesn’t actually do anything.

So let me get back to it so I can really call myself a blogger with substance and output. Let me get on with communicating with the world via this silly and strange and wonderful and terrifying internet, the “WWW” also known as the World Wide Who gives a fuck what it’s called ’cause lookit, boobs and kittens! So here’s a little rundown of what’s to come for Universal Half Truths in the days ahead:

A pointed remark or two or three about how if you are still against the legalization of marijuana you are, simply put,  stupid.  Plus a thought or two on how corporations and businesses who adhere to strict drug testing and no tolerance policies are going to be steadily left behind and become stagnant by refusal to adjust to the unstopping growth of working professionals who are cannabis users.

A word or seven on how awesome it would be if the band Queen did the soundtracks to all movies. With examples from “Highlander” and “Flash Gordon” (both films with soundtracks by Queen) to illustrate the point.

A running update on how the work on “Rolling With Kings” is coming along as we try to take 400 or so hours of footage and interviews and turn them into an 1 and a half hour film that is enjoyable.

A post here or there in which I share excerpts from scripts I have written in the vain hopes that more people will read them, offer constructive critique, and maybe even give one to someone who wants to buy one or all of them.  Look, if you know anyone who is a writer, much less a screenwriter, you know they will slap you in the face with their scripts until you want to pull their tongue out through their navel to try and get you to read them.  And even then the screenwriter will keep trying.  So please, when these posts start coming up, read them. Seriously, don’t push me or this can happen:

Read my work or unbelievably heated up innocent blood will be on your hands.

Read my work or unbelievably heated up innocent blood will be on your hands.

Here’s to one hell of a 2014 everyone!!!

Illustrations by my awesome sister Lyn (captions and the wordy things by me), you should follow her rather enjoyable blog The Lazy Lady.

The little documentary that will.

There are 15 days left on the fundraising campaign for the documentary I am working on.  This one:

Rolling With Kings, The Story of the Krewe of the Rolling Elvi

About these cats:

          Image

   At this rate we’ll fall well short of the fundrasing goal. It happens. Happened last time too, even though we got just what we needed the last go around.  It’s disheartening I have to admit. I’ve been given advice on how to make a crowdsourcing campaign work better, and while it was always sound enough advice, it was the kind not well applicable to filmmakers in my position.

The advice was usually as follows –

1. Spend hours a day pushing it!  Which would be fine, if I didn’t have a 9-5 that has an insane busy pace, and a family to take care of and all the things that go with that, and actual work on the film to do (transcribing interviews, getting releases and legal docs signed, hell creating said docs in and of itself, putting the puzzle pieces together so the film can actually make sense, this is going on a whole different post there’s so much). There also comes a point when I simply am sick of looking at a screen, be it TV, computer, phone, I don’t care. It brings on a down swing emotionally for me.  Bad enough how many people live more of their lives looking at some glowing screen rather than actual life. But I understand the need to escape actual life and call that living instead. 

2. If you don’t have time, then hire someone to put it out there for you, buy sponsored ads on FB, Twitter, and the like. Which sounds neat, now if only that elusive “money” thing were to be found to hire someone, much less someone who’s commission (let’s just call it what it is) makes the fees taken by whatever funding platform seem miniscule.

3.  Tap into your “fanbase” and “core audience”!  The fanbase thing only works if you have actual fans.  It works great for celebs like Spike Lee and Zach Braff of course. Not to mentions popular musicians who now think they want to make movies. Once one has tapped into the celebrity vein of this culture you can practically film yourself shitting in a bucket and there would still be a few thousand folks willing to throw some bread in to see it.  As far as core audience goes, it’s a bit of a different thing to look at metrics for a documentary than say some horror or comedy film. The core audience is everyone.  It isn’t an advocacy documentary nor is it a tear jerker telling the tragic, yet inspiring tale of some village of crippled children or some such shit, so drumming up a more impassioned line of support is tricky. I went to a networking event not long ago, and when talking about my documentary to someone there I described it as light hearted, funny, and an unusual slice of New Orleans culture.  His response: “Did anyone die, go to jail, or did anything controversial/sexy/tension raising happen?  Not really? Then I don’t care. People who watch docs to feel better about life need self help books, not films.”  This from a film executive. Sigh. I know, one person’s opinion and all that, but stil.   

4. Offer great perks/gifts for donating! Well, I am, and have. I’ve even put out there an even less expensive perk of a digital download of the film for just an $11 donation. 

Truth is, just as I am learning about filmmaking as I go, it’s the same for crowdfunding.  I haven’t done this all too well or perfectly I readily admit.  Matter of fact I’ve never met anyone who has done it successfully, at least for a film project.  If I ever do such a thing as crowdfunding again, I like to think I’ll go about it smarter next time around. 

That said, there is simply no giving up on this film. I just can’t.  I know it will make the world a better place for being made and seen. Now, how exactly we’ll get it finished and out there, well, still figuring that out. 

Rolling With Kings, The Story of the Krewe of the Rolling Elvi

The Krewe of the Rolling Elvi

Rolling With Kings, The Story of the Krewe of the Rolling Elvi

This is the big project I have been and am still working on at present. It is a feature length documentary about The Krewe of the Rolling Elvi. Here’s some background info:

Back in 2003, a small group of friends were watching a Mardi Gras parade together and they saw a bunch of Shriners in dune buggies pass by in the procession. They thought to themselves “Why don’t WE do that too?” thus was born a new krewe, but not just any krewe. Together they were inspired by the image of the king of rock ‘n’ roll, Elvis Presley, to don the attire of said king, and ride forth onto New Orleans and the world on little scooters, as members of a new kind of Mardi Gras royalty.

Elvi9

In the 10 years since then, The Krewe of the Rolling Elvi have grown to hundreds of members, and have become one of the most popular attractions to Mardi Gras visitors, and the people of New Orleans. As the krewe has grown, so has its positive influence on the world, with countless appearances for charity fundraising and great causes not just in New Orleans, but internationally as well. Their very presence creates laughter and smiles wherever they go. This is their story, the story of men and women who become kings and queens, and make the world a better place.

Elvi at LASPCS

I feel that this is an amazing story which should be told to the world, and hope that in doing so other people will be inspired to make their world a better place too. I want to give the world a slice of what it is like to be a Rolling Elvi, to be in a Mardi Gras parade, and to showcase this part of New Orleans culture.

Making of RWK                 Making RWK 2

This link is to our fundraising campaign on Indiegogo and it has a clip to show you how the film is looking.  ANY little bit really helps me and my crew (krewe?) get that much closer to getting this film made and shown to the world. I hope you enjoy the glimpse of what I’ve been working on for the past year and a half.  If you’d like to throw in awesome! If not, then maybe just help spread the word out there about a New Orleans film about some amazing people.