Post Production

Ex Animo

I started the Twitter feed for this movie the day Pedro and I shook hands over hamburgers and vowed to make a movie. I registered the account that evening and dutifully began memorializing the process of making “Clocking The T” with this tweet:

    CTT First Tweet 600px
So, why this blog?

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Punching Above Your Weight

We finished shooting the movie-in-the-movie sequences yesterday after ramping up through months of stop & start misery and pigfuckery. To be honest, the shoot was so painful it nearly broke me. Had pre-production for principal photography two years ago been this bad there’s no doubt in my mind that we would have pulled the plug on “Clocking the T” there and then.

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Test Patterns

We just chugged through a week and a half of test screening the movie. Step one is, of course, getting people to watch it. In L.A., cold calling people to screen your self-financed micro-budget movie is pretty much asking them, "Is it okay if I show you my junk?" Mostly, they just run away.

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Two Drops From Dry

In the inexorable rush of western civilization to dynamite itself, the United Kingdom voted out of EU membership today. The thing is, we actually financed “Clocking The T” from my international savings account in Britain.

*gulp*

How does a European political debacle have anything to do with a Los Angeles based micro-budget passion project? To make sense I need to back up a little.


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They Think We’re Making ‘Coven’

We went to a family reunion in South Dakota back in July and my sister-in-law and her husband asked how the movie was going. I said it was going well but that we’d had a lot of setbacks and we’re slogging through it. That’s when I noticed she was giving me That Look.

Glassy eyed.

Slight nod of the head.

A shadow of a smile.

Every facial tic and body posture that human beings have developed over two million years of genetic evolution to communicate,
"You sad fuckin’ loser,” without actually saying it.

When I mentioned it to Erika she said, yeah, she’d gotten the same Look when asked about the movie from a co-worker the week before. I wondered aloud, “What’s up with that? ” And she leaned in and whispered, “They think we’re making '
Coven.'"

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Rings Of A Tree

At the tail end of the summer of ’95 I went to a BBQ of a friend of a friend’s place in Burbank. There I met a crew member who’d worked in a key position on “The Usual Suspects, ” which had just come out in theaters six weeks earlier to much acclaim. Enthusiastically I asked what that experience had been like and they began to dump a bucket of vitriol all over the movie, and in particular, the director, Bryan Singer. They told me he was a clown, a fool, both clueless and nitpicking. He didn’t know how to run a set, direct actors, or how even pronounce ‘Keyser Sozes'’ name correctly. They said it was a miracle the film got made. There was more but it’s irrelevant. Because here’s the thing:

It’s obvious to anyone who saw “The Usual Suspects” that summer that Bryan Singer
knew what he was doing.

In fact, anyone who has
ever seen “The Usual Suspects” knows immediately that Bryan Singer is a world class director.

So… WTF, right?


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You Load Sixteen Tons, What Do You Get?

It’s our anniversary, of a kind. Whether good or bad, I cannot tell you. In the Death March of micro-budgetland, it’s just another signpost you ignore, knowing full well you’re Not There yet.

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Twenty-First Century Mulligan

We've been looping the movie the last couple of weeks, with actors flying in and out of the edit bay as they're available—which is a toughie when we're all juggling day jobs and the leads have a fistful of sides. But it's getting done. And here's how we did it on the cheap…

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Low Hanging Fruit

We watched the ‘first cut’ of CTT last night and it moved along a LOT better. It’s really the second cut, but nobody counts the assembly. We didn’t miss a single thing of the 21 min 30 sec we deleted. If anything, we saw more scenes and elements we can jettison. But it certainly flows much smoother. In fact, it cranks along nicely…

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Abbodanza!!!!

Boom, there it is. Our assembly of everything we shot. After the endless debacles since we wrapped I never thought I’d get to this point, but here it is. 2 hours and 21 minutes of the movie.

Six months late.


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Tabernac

Right on cue the transmission on my car shit the bed. It’s a twelve year old Honda Accord with 156,599 miles on it (Not quite to the moon…) so, yeah, these things happen. Get a new car, right? Sounds good, except for one little problem. It’s the car the protagonist drives in the film and we’re not done shooting it out yet.

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THANKS, Obama!!!

Jana got her visa. She's coming back in January!

[HUUUUUUGE sigh of relief goes here]

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The Cleftal Horizon

The internet is an amazing resource for filmmakers. Got a problem? Just ask. More often than not somebody Out There will help you out. Somebody you don’t know will chime in with a recommendation or answer that will Stop The Bleeding from the technology induced lacerations that end users and indie filmmakers invariably suffer. But sometimes the global village just bites you in the ass and you walk around with teeth marks that look like a tramp stamp.

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Noobacalypse

I kept on top of the budget until about two weeks before we started filming and after that it was 'all receipts go in the box.' So it wasn't until the holding pattern from my computer being replaced that I got around to bringing the budget back into some kind of order.

*Yikes*

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"Skirt SEP … tower JETT"

Let me bring you up to speed on what I've been doing the last four weeks: Nothing.

Correction: Fucking nothing.

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Thanks, Obama!

Jana Nawartschi wasn’t the first actor we hired, that was Lee Simonds who read the role of Stanfield at the table read last year, but she was the first one we hired from the auditions back in March. She was the first lead and was totally and completely phenomenal and proved it every day on the set. Have you hired her for your next movie yet? Seriously, you should. Anyway, she’s actually German, living in LA on a work visa.

Not anymore.

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#superfucked

At the glacier speed that post production is moving I finally got around to synching dailies on the last week of photography… and just discovered that the entire day’s audio for Day 15 is lost. The 50 audio files I do have are a fraction of what we shot. It’s been 149 days since then. Four months, twenty-seven days. The chances of ‘finding’ that media now are slim and none, and Slim’s out of town.

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Cut Faster, Donkey Boy

So I'm… what… month four of editing? And I still don't have an assembly. It's tough being a One Man Band. If something needs to be done then I gotta do it. So things go sloooooow. It doesn't help that I have to stop down for weeks at a time to make my paper. But I have an hour and a half assembled and…

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Twitter Is A Problem

I started a Twitter account the day I shook hands with Pedro and decided to make "Clocking The T." From the get go I chose to be honest. I'd read enough Making Of blogs and been around theatrical advertising enough to know most of it was bullshit. And from the sixteen low budget features I'd edited on I knew that director's get pounded like a handmade canoe in a Class 5 hurricane. So I figured, what the hell, might as well just be honest about the ups and downs and see what happens.

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