First, a lil 2015 personal update. I had a blast working on Power Rangers this year. When I get some time I'll do a post about some of the things I've learned. In a nutshell, working in a TV writing room is simultaneously the most rewarding, fun, and difficult job I've ever had. I love it. Anyway, my first three Power Rangers Dino Charge co-writing credits have now aired, they are episodes 17 'World Famous (In New Zealand!)', 18 'Deep Down Under' and 20 'One More Energem'. The first 8 episodes of the season are on Netflix, and I'm hoping that means the rest will show up too. I'm pretty pumped for Dino Super Charge to come out in 2016 as well.
Hey look, I’m alive!
I think I am, anyway. I marathoned most of Hannibal season 1 over the weekend, and it got a little hard to tell by the end due to the constant barrage of madness in that wonderful show. Anyway, I haven’t updated in ages. Since my last entry I have:
So, because nothing makes me happier than brainstorming these, here’s some B-movie ideas:
I’ll see myself out.
I’m excited for next weekend - our 3rd Script-Write-A-Thon. I’ll be writing a new draft of GASH PALACE, hopefully within the 48 hours since I've carded it out properly this time. I’ve well and truly learned my lesson from last time when I went in without an ending planned and came out with a script without an ending. Womp waaa. Hopefully we’ll have a bunch of other writers turn up and we’ll eat a whole bunch of candy and have some fun.
I just realised I've forgotten to update and say HURRAY, Squidwig Productions made the Wellington 48Hours final with our little film YES I CAN! Plus, we were nominated and then won (!!!) Best Art Direction for Wellington!
Super stoked about this, but mostly happy that we had such a blast making it. Sometimes 48Hours can be a stressful affair, but going into it with very little gear this year gave us a 'screw it, let's have fun!' attitude which gave our end product a lot of extra life. Plus our crew & actors were off the chain amazing <3
Anyways, here's the film!
Last weekend was 48 Hours, and Squidwig Productions had a blast creating our ocean creature riddled short YES I CAN!, starring our favourite 11 year old Mikayla Pratley. Our heat is on Tuesday, and it’ll be cool to see whether having the least stressful 48 Hours ever translates to the end product on the big screen.
Next weekend is 48HOURS 2014! It has really sneaked up on us. Squidwig Productions have a small team and are planning on keepin’ it casual this year.
No blog this week! Just this.
THE ROBOT MONOLOGUES
Starring Emma Smith
Written & Directed by Becca Barnes & Alwyn Dale
When Astrid has a near death experience, she discovers that she’s actually a robot. Join her as she shares the stories of six other robots from all walks of synthetic life.
Emotion isn't a bug, it's a feature.
THE ROBOT MONOLOGUES will be at Newtown Community Centre on:
- Fri 14th Feb, 8pm
- Sat 15th Feb, 8pm
- Sun 16th Feb, 12.30pm
- Sun 16th Feb, 8pm
Koha entry. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to make a booking, or just turn up and hope we're not full and/or slaves to our new robotic overlords.
Hello! It’s February, holy shit.
January was eaten by play rehearsals, writing, and Simpsons Tapped Out. Ssssh, tell no one about that last thing. I spent today trying to get the first 25 pages of GASH PALACE up to scratch for an upcoming writer’s workshop, and it’s on more or less track. Although, I changed so much stuff, the rest of the story will need a once-or-twice-or-twenty-over.
Had a lot of fun with research this week. Who knew how many YouTube videos there were of people explaining how a car crusher worked? There are many, and all of the dudes explaining have really awesome beards.
I’m still flicking between the various directing books looking for answers on things I have questions about. Too many of those sessions end with me going “Ooo, I should buy a new lens” and going down a Trade Me rabbit hole, so I should probably put a can on that (note: have resisted thus far, mostly because I still know shit all about lenses).
So, there’s been a lot of oddly specific movie worthy news articles floating around lately. A vial of Pope John Paul ll’s blood was stolen from a little church in the mountains east of Rome. Here’s three ideas based around that:
None of this of true, but it’s nice when the news gives you a chance to dream, right?
It’s Sunday evening, and Wellington weather is having a hissy fit outside. I’m still in the office, a long and bloody battle with twenty or so carded out scenes today.
This is how my day went:
It’s not working, it’s not working, it’s not working, it’s not working, it’s not working, it’s not worki-- oh, shit, this actually kinda makes sense now. Cool.
It might sound sort of depressing, but it actually kind of gives me hope in a weird way. I’m getting fairly confident the ‘It’s working!’ moment will eventually turn up if I keep at it. I’m not one of those people who believes inspiration comes from an invisible golden monkey sitting in the sky. The only reason I make any progress at all with a story is because I’m incredibly stubborn about making it work to the point of (metaphorically) punching myself in the brain until it does.
“Ooo, that all sounds positive..ish!”
Hmm, there’s still that flipside along the lines of what I mentioned last week. For every time I solve a problem, there’s probably about twenty more ready to crop up, often negating everything I’ve previously just figured out. But that’s just part of it. Right? Rightttt??? ...Shut up, you’re not my real Dad. Overall, though, I'm pretty happy with where GASH PALACE is heading.
So that’s where I’m at with writing. For directing, this week I started reading a book recommended by some friends called Grammar of the Shot by Christopher J. Bowen & Roy Thompson. It’s cool, it’s the closest book I’ve found to finger puppet explaining (aka. it’s nice and simple). Apparently it’s the classic “Hey, read this!” at Auckland film schools. My film school was more fond of Directing Actors: Creating Memorable Performances for Film & Television by Judith Weston. Also a great read for those wanting to focus on working with actors rather than the technical side of things.
Okay, I have a headache and I want to go home and watch something trashy. Although, it’ll hard to beat last night’s viewing trash wise: FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC (2014, Lifetime channel remake), and THE DISCO EXORCIST (2011). Both suitably terrible. Anyway, here’s some trash of my own, inspired by a book of drive-in movie posters I got in the states.
THREE NEW IDEAS!
Hello and welcome to another edition of ‘Becca writes her blog really fast on a Sunday afternoon because the time is probably better spent writing scripts.’ As the title suggests, I’ve had a slightly annoying week. I’ve had a whole bunch of breakthroughs with Gash Palace (yay!) but each of them has meant some major structural changes requiring massive rewrites (boo-- but also yay-- oh, I don’t know how to feel).
Regarding directing, this week I looked into the line some more and got suitably confused once I got up to multiple lines of action in things like car races. I’ll look into that again next week, and will potentially enlist a friend with finger puppets to help answer some questions I have. I also started reading a book called ‘Making the Transformational Moment in Film’ by Dan Fleming, which centres around Vincent Ward’s work. Looks like the sort of thing I’d have dreaded ploughing through at university, but I’m a little older and wiser now, as well as much less likely to be hungover than I was during first year uni in 2007.
We’re pretty busy at the moment with rehearsals for The Robot Monologues after hours, but it’s coming along nicely and you should come. Yes you, singular-reader-of-my-blog-who-is-probably-my-Mum.
Another thing I wanted to do in my blog this week recommend the Screenwriters’ Lecture Series podcast produced by BAFTA. I’ve just finished everything up so far and it’s bloody great. It’s a whole bunch of professional screenwriters giving 1 hour lectures about the craft. It’s worth listening to the lot just so you get to experience the way every writer works in different ways. But if you’re going to try just one, listen to Charlie Kaufman’s. He made me cry on a treadmill at the gym. Classy.
THREE NEW IDEAS!
Welp, I really got nothing this week because I’ve been so flat out, so I’ll try and come up with something right now. Warning: incoming bollocks.
Anyway, tomorrow is Wellington Anniversary Day, a public holiday from day-job. I’m going to take advantage of a free writing day and try and plough through all the rewrites to get back on track. I feel a bit like writing’s clingy girlfriend at the moment, grabbing every spare hour I can get to spend with it. Hey baby, I heard you like tight stories and multi-dimensional characters. Me too, gee, we have so much in common…
Film and things.