Monday, December 31, 2007

Battle Plan

A-blogging I will go, in order to get the writing portion of my brain functioning so that I can work on my Boxing Day script.

On the eve of 2008, I reflect on where I am in terms of achieving my goal, which is to make a living making films. For me, that means acting, writing, or directing. Or some combination of those three. Here's what I did in 2007:

- I attended Slamdance as a result of my placing in the Slamdance Screenplay Competition.
- I completed the last of 23 episodes of Buddy Jackson as G. Stimpson Erdogan.
- I played the title character in the award winning 48 Hour Film Project film, The Kumbio Takedown.
- I signed with Linda Townsend Management and booked a couple of paid acting gigs including three days of extra work on Step Up 2, which was also my first time on a major motion picture set.
- I had a staged reading of my script, Pennsyltucky, in New York City as part of my Slamdance Screenplay Competition prize.
- I finished two more feature length scripts, School Girl and Designated Driver.
- I wrote the script for and acted in Halloween 420, a National Film Challenge film.
- I played Dr. Chin in Ten Sundays Productions' Abraham Lincoln.
- I started developing another feature length idea, Boxing Day.

I may be forgetting some things, but that's the long and short of it. It's not a bad list of accomplishments, but at the end of the day, filmmaking is still just a hobby for me. My current strategy for breaking into the business is to make a feature that will either get me noticed as a writer-director and lead to another feature, or just get me recognized as a writer and then land an agent. And there's also the outside chance that I get a decent role in a movie or TV series.

My quest to make a feature started earnestly toward the end of my grad school career with Confederate Dead. When that fell through, I folded up my tent and returned to D.C. Then I turned my attention to Pennsyltucky, with the hope of producing it with my film school buddies. When I couldn't muster the help to do that, I decided to just churn out feature scripts, which resulted in School Girl. For the better part of a year, acting in Buddy Jackson gave me my filmmaking fix. When it ended, I was more pumped than ever to make a feature. So I wrote a script that could be produced in the D.C. area for less money for Pennsyltucky, which is how Designated Driver came about. Designated Driver is still very much in the cards, but the frustration of trying to raise money made me want to make a feature for NO money. I've just been itching to do a feature for the longest time, so I came up with the idea for Boxing Day. The idea is to make a feature with a single location, seven actors, and shoot it in less than seven total days.

I don't believe there's a magic bullet that's going to get me into the industry. But what's been good is that I've been stockpiling scripts and developing a decent acting resume. So in six months or so, if I look to be in the same situation, I may pack up my scripts and my acting reel and make a go of it in L.A.

1 comment:

JD said...

I think LA is where you need to go, but as long as you have lots of scripts. Which you have. So, the game plan is sound from this end.
Happy New Year!!