Friday, August 28, 2009

CASTING SCHEDULE & Audition Segments

After many calls, emails and rearranging, the Casting Schedule is set for Saturday, Aug 29. Second round actors and call-backs are scheduled for Saturday, Sept 12. We're bringing a Sony HD camera, two mics, and two sets of lights along with water & snacks. As a director, I believe that happy actors are good actors.

Each actor will read a page or two from the script as well as a selected short monologue IN CHARACTER. If they have something of their own they can read that as well.


- Helen
- Katie
- Joan (Mrs. Everett)
- Gil (Mr. Jones)
- Mary
- Concepcion (Mrs. Salinas)
- Hostess/Bridal Assistant



10:30 AM

10:45 AM

11:00 AM

11:15 AM

11:30 AM

11:45 AM

12 noon


1:00 PM

1:15 PM

1:30 PM

1:45 PM

2:00 PM

2:15 PM

2:30 PM

2:45 PM

3:15 PM

3:30 PM

3:45 PM

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Great Journey to Find a Casting Location

I have gone through the casting process on other films, but I realize now that I've only been privy to part of the story. Sifting through photos & resumes is one thing... but the real challenge has been finding a location to cast a group of professional actors.

While doing casting at Laney College in Oakland the crew was hosted, treated fairly, and had some technical help with lights. Finding a similar situation in Sonoma County has been like driving a train in the rain. I couldn't really see the tracks and every stop I made asked for steep toll charges.

While there are locations such as the Playhouse & Cinnabar stages, churches, and the Sebastopol Center for the Arts, my dream location was the new theater at the SRJC Petaluma campus. After some phone calls I talked to a few key people who told me that the cost was $100/hour. Yes, this was the NONPROFIT FEE.

When I told the Assoc. Producer and other crew about this, the response was disbelief. "Wow, you could rent a big place in SF for that cost," was typically what people said. I didn't disagree. I shot days and days of dance production video on a stage in SF for $16/hour and full use of the lights and sound. Use of the local high school and junior high stages ranged from $24-$30/hour with a $30 janitorial fee. This wasn't unknown territory to me.

I made some calls, met with the professor who uses the facility, talked to the facility manager, and spoke at length with Terry Lindley, who is on the board of the JC. I also know one of the builders who has the keys to the facility. Despite these tentacles and warm relationships, the struggle to open the doors and use the stage was getting in the way of scheduling casting. This was a bigger fish than I had tackle for.

With days to go and with no confirmation in site, I made the call to the Community Media Center of Santa Rosa. As a member, any SR resident can use the facility and the gear (with training) for free. It's part of our community access, and most communities in CA and in many other states have a community access facility. As part of my graduate degree, I focused on community media. I served on the convening board of the Marin Community Media Center, which includes three public access channels, and currently sit on the board for the Santa Rosa CMC. It is a valuable community facility and we are fortunate to have it.

Our casting is set for Saturday, Aug 29 and Saturday, Sept 12, with use of lights, microphone and the sound stage. Thank you to the Community Media Center.

Saturday, August 15, 2009


This is great news! We're moving production to the last week of January, which means more time to make a great film. Casting will continue on schedule, but this will allow us more time to find the right cast and crew, and more importantly raise the necessary $20K. A big huge thanks goes to Allison, our bridal shop owner, who's been flexible and positive.

Shooting Dates: Jan 25-28, 2010

Check out the bridal shop here: Starlet Bridal

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Blessed or Damned? That is the question...

This week we reviewed actor submissions and have come up with our list for the first round of casting -- Ta Da!

I'm tired. It's taken longer than I thought it would to get here, and the road has been bumpy at best.

The production of this short, lovely, marvelous film was early on blessed by the gods. An enthusiastic team, a core group jumping in with enthusiasm, great script feedback, and the joy of joys... a location that's already beautiful, needs very little set dressing, and is allowing us to use their space gratis, including all the designer gowns fit specifically for each actress!

As time has gone on, reality has chipped away at my little island of paradise. We have had nearly every imaginable challenge thrown in our path. It really truly started with the loss of JC's job... JC, our driver and "behind the scenes" shooter. From there, we had the resignation, no, the *divorce* of our beloved co-writer and editor Mick, the success of our storyboard artist (who graciously bowed out due to her pending gallery exhibits), the blunt *pass* of our composer, and finally, most recently, the crash derby destruction of my car, which is currently in the body shop getting $5k+ worth of work. This was further compounded with the tragically sad news of the passing of Emmanuelle's uncle -- Emmanuelle, my always positive friend, my casting & visionary guru. In the midst of this, the IRS is auditing me for 2007 & 2008. At the same time, the store owner is truly an artist at heart, and we just can't seem to sit down and sign the contract.

While these small and seemingly not insurmountable challenges may seem individually piffling, together they combine to create a huge swell -- and it's me that's tumbling in the green room. But I am moving forward positively, my great eye fixed on the prize.

We made our casting choices and we will have our auditions despite the tribulations. I will secure the stage for Round 2.

Much thanks goes to Emmanuelle who, in the midst of her tremendous grieving and her own uncertain future, had the courage and strength to run through the casting, encourage me and pass her positive thoughts toward the production of this film. She asks the big questions, plus she drank martinis with me.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Casting with Emmanuelle

In the midst of real-life craziness, I'm meeting my casting gal Emmanuelle Anatolin at Rizzo's Cafe in Oakland. I've already sent her a CD of potentials, and we have a whole bunch more to view online. I trust her judgment and know she'll have some insight about working with the team we pick out. Our ideal scenario is to have 4 candidates for each role, and narrow down the key roles to 2 people for the follow up casting call. I'm hoping to cast the secondary and background actors all at once -- view the card and resume, shoot them at the casting on video, and then a quick decision: How do they interact and how do they look on film?

My key crew is a team I worked with years ago on Emmanuelle's film, Ode to Donuts. Shooting was fun and a great learning experience for all of us. She had a great cast and did a lot of work to get them to work together well. The film ended up 180 degrees from what we thought we shot, but it was a good creative effort for her, and yes, O's little part with the donuts is still in the final cut. That's sweet.

While producing and directing your own short film is a challenge on its own, it's clear I've taken on a giant gorilla while doing it with a full-time job, a home life in disarray, and now, I've just crashed my car and will have to spent a chunk of money I've planned for the film to get it repaired. These are the hurdles we overcome during the process, I suppose. I've decided to drink more tea to keep it calm. Chamomile is my new friend, if only because it slows the machine down...

Today is the Big Ass BBQ. For those in the know, it's a big day. And so I will drive down to Oakland, do some casting work, and then head into the great fiesta, drink in hand, hopefully to rock out a little and play some music with my posse, the amazing TWO STICKS. My DP and Art Director will be there as well. But no film talk allowed. It's a party, my friends.

Until next time...