Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Today, Monday I had to get up early and venture out into the real world and deal with the snow, which to me was no big deal, but I am amazed at how many folks from this area, cannot do the simplest things in the snow like... turn! People see a little of the white stuff on the ground and immediately turn into the worst drivers since... since... well, since Boston drivers!
Well my stuntman driving skills, developed on the crooked streets of Boston through sleet, snow and rain have helped me all over the world and they helped me today. I've landed at one of my favorite mobile offices... I'm getting some work done... and since there are still not a lot of folks out here, it almost feels like I have a city to myself.
So thanks snow for making it a white Christmas this year... and to all of you out there in this area driving... if you can't do the snow thing... stay at home... for all of us... please?
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Now I realize it's not going to win me an Independent Spirit Award or and Academy Award, but hopefully it gets my point across in a fun, joking, yet somewhat serious way. And the bottom line, it was all in good fun... thanks guys!
P.S. Get your interviews in quickly!!! lol
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
The red cups for the holidays are in full effect at my favorite mobile office and the end of the year is nearing! It's funny, some folks get really excited to see the red mugs, I suppose it's a nice touch.
Yesterday spent a good bit of the day editing one of the "extras" segments for the "3 Days..." DVD. It came out pretty good! Still more to do, but I feel like it's going in the right direction. I hope that I can finish all of the editing by the middle of January, but of course some of that depends on others who have some interviews to pass along. If I can just get those last few interviews in, I can really start to look long term for a release date.
So let me get some work done here and keep the train heading in the right direction!
Monday, December 7, 2009
Getting some good work done on the "3 Days..." Special Anniversary Edition of the DVD. Knocked out one interview today and putting together some ins and outs.
Have a couple of more interviews from cast/crew members coming and hopefully will shoot one interview later this week or next for the project as well. It's coming along slowly, but it's been a blast revisting the film and the project and I think folks are really going to like what they see!
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Hanging out at my mobile office this morning and in addition to some good coffee, I'm listening to Pandora Radio and Anita Ward's "Ring My Bell," is on and that brings me back... way back! That's 8th grade for me folks, 1979 Disco was king!
Have some stuff to work on for "3 Days..." looks like I'm going to be getting a couple of interviews coming soon which will be great. I have a couple of things to tape on my end as well, so I'll knock those out at the beginning of next week and then I should be able to sit down and do some serious editing. I really want to have a rough cut done before the Holidays and then lock everything up near before the end of January.
The stuff I have right now is pretty good and I think when everyone sees this DVD they'll really like the tons and I mean tons of extras with this bad boy, so that's nice, especially for all of those who worked their asses off to get this film made... thanks again folks!
Anyway time to get to work... Bell, Biv, DeVoe... 1990... "Poison" how can you not work with all of this great music! (All of this found on Pandora Radio, all I did was hit Klymaxx as my radio station!)
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Big morning, joining the Twitter Nation... it'll be interesting to see how this all works, but so far so good. If you want to follow me there, just click the link next to the blog for Twitter and you can link with me there or go to: www.twitter.com/MDavidLeeIII and you can use that link to follow me.
I hope this week will be kind of busy, I need to really push myself on a couple of things... working on the logo for TSP and of course the 10th Anniversary DVD for "3 days... 3 hours... 3 minutes... 3 seconds..." I have a lot done, but still have a lot more to knock out. Hopefully I'm going to be getting a couple of interviews from some folks on the Left Coast and then there is someone out here I should be able to hook up with soon and lock down their interview. I will say, I like where things are going with the overall DVD though.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Do you recognize this place? It was the police headquarters for one of the greatest television shows of the 90s and maybe ever... "Homicide: Life of the Street"
Today I'm up in Fells Point doing a little writing before picking up my Mom at the airport for a Thanksgiving visit and I was looking for a place to grab a cup of coffee and write and found this funky, cool coffee shop just across the street from the station, so you know I had to go in and spend some time.
If you can't tell, I loved that show, especially the first couple of seasons. The writing was amazing... the performances outstanding and jut the overall vibe of the how was state of the art back then. No one did a show like that and while it struggled to find an audience for awhile, the critics loved it and those in the know did as well.
"Homicide: Life on the Street," is one of the reasons I love the city of Baltimore and I'm hoping some of that energy will rub off on me today as I sit down and hack away. You know at one point I even wrote an episode of the show, sent it in but it was at the end of the run so I never had a shot of it getting picked up. Somewhere I have a very nice letter from someone on the writing staff saying, "thanks."
One thing is for sure as I get ready to close this up and get to work... I love these kinds of funky little coffee houses. The people, the energy... I love being around it all... it definitely perks you up!
Friday, November 20, 2009
Before the show I walked around and got tons of photos and I felt like a little kid again! I remembered that excitement I had when I saw the original "Star Wars," back when it was just "Star Wars" and not "Star Wars... episode IV a New Hope."
Inside the arena the stage was huge with lots of screens and as the concert started, I was quickly transformed back to 1977 when it all began. If you've followed this blog at all you know that this is the film that made me want to be a director.
As I sat in my seat, watching, listening to the score I was reminded how great John Williams is as a composer. All six of the "Star Wars," films were represented visually and musically. And to make everything special, Anthony Daniels aka "C-3PO" was live and did the narration throughout the show.
Just look at some of the shots in space or in some of the ground battles and Lucas learned some new tricks and got some new toys and over did it. Too many layers of graphics, too many characters on the screen.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Monday, November 2, 2009
Out doing some work on a funky kind of a Monday. Today I'm at one of my favorite mobile office's, but not in one of my favorite seats in the office because others have had the nerve to sit there and get this... do some work! lol Nonetheless I'll bang out some work from this foreign position that has my left arm a little too close to the wall for my liking, but if that's all I have to worry about in this world I am so lucky!
So with my morning liquid courage... Grande Extra Hot Mocha that is and the Pandora Radio station jamming away with Teena Marie inspired artist for awhile befor switching to Sting, I'm knocking out this blog entry before settling in to some work on a couple of different projects.
Still lots to do for the special "3 Days..." DVD. Have a couple of scripts I really need to spend some time looking at and figuring out what I might want to do with them. I also have to resume my search for a writing agent, so that will get some priority this week. Then add in some editing back at home a little bit later and I've already got a full day of work lined up. Oh and I'm going to swing by the Doc's and pick up my flu shot... not sure if it's just a regular one or the Swine Flu shot, but I figured anything is better than having nothing!
So time to close out this post and get to work and if you ever see me in one of my mobile offices all over the world, stop by and say, "Hello!" I'll take a shot of you with me and put you in our blog!!!
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
I've been pouring through old footage, stills and so much more. The one thing I'm convinced of more than ever is that I had an amazing cast and crew around me for this film!
There is still a lot left to do on this project. We're shooting for a Christmas release, but if we don't make it, then the first part of 2010 the film WILL be available on DVD.
Keep it locked in right here and you'll get the very latest information on the film.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
On my way to one of my favorite mobile office's this morning, I wanted to let everyone know that there will be some subtle changes coming to, "The INSIDE Skinny" over the next several days. I'm in the process of tweaking it, just a bit. I hope the new look will keep you locked in and looking!
It's another wet and miserable day here in Silver Spring, the perfect day to hunker down and get some work done and that's exactly what I have to do! I can't keep saying I'm going to knock stuff out, but I have to do it... for real!
Part of the "doing it" is spending some time working on the "3 Days..." DVD that I was hoping to have ready by Christmas. I don't know if that will happen yet, because I'm still working on getting a couple of other elements for the DVD release that I think are important, so keep an eye out here for updates on that.
I also am in that weird place where I know I need to write, want to write, have some ideas to write, but have been in a little funk pushing myself to really sit down and type away. So far this year it's been pretty productive, one feature film complete and then a spec script for a half hour cable show, so all in all not bad. I do have a couple of ideas that I've started to flush out and a couple of more that I have in the back of my mind, I just need to get into that "writers" mode and after battling some elements of a cold over that last couple of weeks, it's been hard to really push myself, but hopefully I will before the year is out. Who knows, maybe I need to just drive 100 miles outside of town, get a hotel and lock myself up just to write!
Anyway, going to get to work now, but thanks for reading... drop a comment from time to time, it would be great to know there are folks out there checking this thing out. lol
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Some days are just harder than others... today feels like one of those, but it is early, so I'm hoping things will pick up.
Generally I'm an upbeat person and and looking forward to the days challenges. For me each new day gives you a chance to work on yourself and do a little better than the day before. But every now and then, today being one of them, you just feel like you're in a funk that you can't shake.
I refuse to let it consume me, so I'll have this time this morning to let it run through my system, then later in the day I'm just going to have to put this funk out of it's misery and move on... I have things I want to accomplish in my life and in my career and I have to work a little harder at making those things come to fruition.
So... 60 minutes and counting, then "Funk" you have to go away today!
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
It's been a little while since I've been able to get out and do some work because I've been battling a cold, but today was my first attempt to get out of the house and so far so good. Now if I can only get my computer back up to speed I will be happy.
I had some stupid person at Toshiba tell me I needed to do a full system reboot the other day and since then I've been spending hours trying to get all of my software back up and running. And just in case you were wondering, yes I back up... but right now that is an issue as well because Norton 360's files aren't restoring so I can access pictures or files... stuff that I've saved and backed up for years, so I've been spending hours and hours on the phone with them trying to figure out what the heck is going on and I am a pissed! Can you tell?
Monday, September 28, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
A chance to chill out and get some work done at my favorite "mobile office," in the area today. I also get to do it with one of my birthday gifts from my daughter, the Starbucks reusable coffee mug! Saving the environment as well, I wonder if I can write it off?
So lots of stuff from LA last week, still filtering through. I have a couple of series that I have in various forms, I think I'll take a stab at really flushing them out and see if I might be able to develop them into something really worthwhile.
I also need to send out another round of query letters to see if I might be able to land an agent for my writing. So lot's to do, never enough time, but a strong drive so let's get to work!
Saturday, September 19, 2009
A 4th place finish in the SkyFest II festival for my new screenplay. OK so I didn't win it, but the project, "Student's Teacher," did win something and it has given me a little hope to send it out to a couple of other fests.
I learned so much about "the business" out West and how you become a player for "real" in their world. Hopefully some of the lessons I learned will help me in the future. Now I'm not one to do a lot of name dropping, but I want to send out a special thanks to the folks at Warner Brothers, TNT, and HBO for giving me some of the best career advice I've ever had!While I was on the Left Coast, I did get to do some fun things, including eating at a couple of my favorite hot spots and catching up with fellow Memphis Filmmaker Tony Flessas.
I've mentioned him before and right now he's living the dream! He's taking a shot and no matter what, you've always got to respect that. I hung out with him and his producing partner, "Bogey" in North Hollywood for a late lunch/early dinner.
When it was all said and done and I returned home, wouldn't you know it, my cable was down, they can't come and fix it for 4 days and half of the things that I had set to be recorded on my DVR... not recorded. Nothing like being hit in the mouth with reality right off the bat!
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Saturday, September 5, 2009
On the first real day of college football, I'm sneaking in a little work before settling in for what should a great night of football.
A lot of stuff moving forward, but nothing major yet, hopefully there will be some news soon. Still tweaking some stuff and crunching ideas. It's that calm before the storm, I know the rest of the year will be big in some way, so this must be that quiet time.
Did just pick up a new drive to use to finish the special anniversary edition of "3 Days.." on. Just when I started and really got some of the extras ready, I ran out of space!!! I hate when that happens. Over the next day or so, I'll transfer stuff to the new drive and work on the project some more.
I'm also going to put together my director reel so I have something up that shows a little bit of everything that I've done over the years.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Out and about writing today, so life is good. In addition to some touch up work on a couple of things, still working on a couple of scripts, may even go back to one I wrote a while back that I've been slowly updating and making more current. I love the idea, it's a comedy and I think pretty funny, but you never really know until it's read out loud and hopefully made! I can remember the last two scripts I wrote and worked on... the first time they were read aloud with the cast was very exciting and powerful. Both were really funny, still we tweaked things right up to the shooting as well, the life of a script. But that first read... the emotions and excitement behind it, it's hard to beat.Now those of you who follow my blog, know I always respect anyone who gets a film made, it's a huge accomplishment. That goes for the big folks as well and Quentin Tarantino is back in the mix with his new flick, "Inglourious Basterds." Now I saw him on Letterman the other night talk about the film and what he was hoping to do with it, essentially throw his hat in the old time genre of a group of guys going on a mission during World War II, ala the "Dirty Dozen." I've also seen both Brad Pitt and Mike Myers talk positively about the film as well, but to be fair, they're both in it and helping to feed the publicity machine.
However to me and this is just one person's opinion... I don't think it's his "Masterpiece." Some of the performances are outstanding, namely Christopher Waltz as "Hans" and Pitt as "Aldo Raine." There is no mistaking the look and feel of a Tarantino film and it's all there in this one as well, but for me the film is entirely too long and slow in some places. It misses it's mark about being one of those "Guys on a mission" film because it leaves the mission for a huge part of the film and almost has a separate storyline that takes away from the overall idea of the film.
I am also tired of Tarantino using graphic images of violence just for shock value and there are a lot of these in the film. I get that's his thing and he wants to take those 70s kind genres that weren't allowed to be as graphic and make them up-to-date and graphic now, but you don't always need it.
A lot of folks like the film, it was number one in the box office after the first weekend, but I suspect this will be one of those films that will be enhanced by the DVD with extras and more insight into what Tarantino was thinking about when making the film and what he was trying to do.
As a stand alone film right now however, it's good, but not great and maybe not even worth seeing on the big screen, but on a big screen television instead.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
It's been a hot second since I sat down and blogged so I wanted to throw up something so you all knew what's been going on and to just check in.
Right now I'm still tweaking and fiddling with scripts, both spec and the finished one. Also starting to play around with a couple of new ideas, we'll see how that all works out.
I've also been trying to watch a lot different things and get into the head of some other filmmakers. One of the best parts about DVDs for me are the extras. I love seeing the process that the filmmakers go through getting their projects to the screen.
Speaking of filmmakers, a friend of mine known to the world as Westland Armitage just finished his new short, "Trojans," take a look at it when you get a chance. He has a unique vision but more importantly, he continues to make films because of his love for the art and anyone who does that, you know gets my respect 24/7 365(6).
OK time to do some work, feeling a little funky today, but hopefully that will go away after a good session of writing and maybe a movie or two.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
For the first time in what seems like forever, I am out and about!
Over the last several days, I had been battling some kind of virus/flu and I think I've finally licked it. I wouldn't say I'm 100%, but I am definitely strong enough to get up and get out of the house for a little while and what better way to celebrate than to do a little work at my favorite mobile office! Now this particular one is not my fav of favs, but it's a solid one and truth be told one of the things I love about Starbucks is that for the most part I can get my Extra Hot Grande Mocha in Maryland, Tennessee, California or Boston and it's always going to taste the same. Some days that's all you want... that familiar aroma, taste and comfort.
So even though I've been under the weather, it hasn't completely stopped me from working. I'm still trying to get my spec script read and still trying to get my new feature script read. I'm keeping my head up on both fronts and hope that someone will take a chance to at least read something.
I've also started to work on some other scripts, some that I've had and a couple that are new. One of the other projects may take over at some point, but for right now I'm bouncing around getting a little done on a lot.
So that's the latest update, hopefully I'll have some more for you later in the week, but until then... time to get hacking away!
Thursday, August 6, 2009
On the road again at my new mobile office hang out, Mayorga Cafe. It's a rainy day outside, but some times those are the best to get work done.
After getting my new spec script registered with the WGA, I sent out a couple of query letters and have received a couple of responses already! Nothing major, one to record me reading the script on tape and then sending it to this particular agent so they can listen to it. (Does anyone still use cassette tape?) And then in typical Hollywood fashion, one shot me down right away, well they didn't even want to read the letter or listen or my logline for the script because they don't want to be perceived as stealing an idea. (Can you tell this one was a big Hollywood agency?)
Just once I'd like one of these agents or producers to at least read something of mine and THEN say oh it's no go, "thanks but no thanks" or better yet, "Hey we like your script when can we take a meeting and sign you up."
The hard part about writing a spec script is you put in time working on something for someone else. Today I'm going to tweak the script a bit and tighten it up, but this time may all go for not, because no one may even read it.
Instead of looking at it as doing it for no one else to see, I look at it as working on my skills. One of the things I've read over and over in books and interviews is no matter what, you HAVE to keep writing and I do believe that. Readers of this blog know my take on the writing process and I don't believe in forcing yourself to write everyday, but I do believe in the theory you have to keep working on your craft and you have to keep putting something to paper or in the modern day world, ideas to computer-computer to printer. The more you can write, the more styles you try, the better you can become and that's all I'm really trying to do, is get better.
So time to warm up my coffee, settle in for awhile and hack away!
Monday, August 3, 2009
One of the things I hate about apartment life living is that from time to time you have to do things you don't normally like to do in order for them to fix or work on things. That was the case this morning as the apartment complex had to have it's annual gas inspection, so that meant no hot water from 9am to 3pm, so if you wanted to take any kind of a shower that meant up early because I had to get a workout in first and then I could get a shower in before 9am.
So after the workout and shower I decided to go grab something to eat and write at yet a different place today, this time Panera Bread. Again, not one of my favorite places to write, but something different and I need something different right now.
While at Panera I decided to do something I haven't done in a long time and that's write a spec script. Not only did I decide to write one, but I made a promise to myself that I wouldn't leave until I finished. Well not only did I finish, but this draft actually turned out to be a pretty good one.
I won't say the show right now because I am going to continue to work on it a bit and even try to get it read, but it's a half hour cable show I've watched a lot and know the characters. Still writing for someone else is always a tough thing to do and that in the end is why I think I went down this path today more than anything. If I am going to be a better writer, get signed or picked up by an agent, I want to be versatile and have the ability to do a lot of things so this was a step in honing in on those skills. We'll see how it ends up, but no matter what the fact that I was able to sit down and hammer out a decent script is a pretty good accomplishment for a Monday with no hot water!
Thursday, July 30, 2009
A scone, coffee, computer, iPod and a wild imagination... let's see if today will be productive!
Over the last couple of days I've done a really good job at working on the edit of my new script, which is not complete.
But I also have a couple of other scripts in various forms that I might start hacking at to keep the mind sharp and to continually work on the craft of screenwriting. And believe it or not... there are even a couple of more ideas that I should at least get down in note form.
My philosophy has always been, don't force writing, write when you feel it and just ride it for as long as you can, your body, mind and soul will tell you when you need to take a break, so I'm just riding this wave for as long as it goes!