Yup, at the end of every year I like to share some personal shite about myself and my life via the site for you to get a better feel as to the a-hole behind it all. If you dig, fine, read on, if you don't, all good, skip to the next story and call it a motherf*cking life.
For me, 2007 was actually about reaping some rewards off 2006 while gaining new ones. Once again, I topped myself as to the "amount of work" I can do day to day, to the point where burn-outs were almost as frequent as lays falling in my lap. I mean running the website is one thing, and by itself its a full time job... trust me! But topple on top of that writing scripts, trying to sell scripts, trying to get acting gigs, doing acting jobs while attempting to get film projects off the ground in varied capacity and trying to sustain a personal life at the same time... yeah... I felt the weight of my "over-ambition" this year BIG TIME. I ended the year tired...VERY TIRED!
Nope I did not manage to discipline myself when it came to not undertaking too much at the same time, something I wanted to focus on at the end of 2006. I tried, but it didn't pan out and I paid for it. With that spat in your ear, it was still a solid year for my ass, with swell happenings going down. So here are my personal highs and lows of 2007 for those who care.
ARROW' TOP POSITIVES AND NEGATIVES MOMENTS OF 2007
"MY STINT IN 100 FEET"
Eric Red and I on the 100 FEET set!
. Writer/Director ERIC RED had me in mind for a part in his script 100 FEET, he offered me the role but the producers had to approve me first. So I sent them my acting demo reel and got the okay, next thing you know I'm on a set in Budapest acting alongside Bobby Cannavale and Famke Janssen while being directed by Eric f*cking Red.
Straight up, I couldn't have asked for a better experience. As some of you may know, Eric Red was my main "writing" inspiration when I was a wee Arrow, I started to write hardcore because of the guy and his work. And to now be part of one of his films and to be directed by him, well... it was quite the honor. Life has a funny way of unraveling sometimes. Thank you to everybody who had a hand (or a foot) in making this happen.
Me and 100 FEET DOP Ken Kelsh.
"RECON 2022 & ENGLAND"
Director Christian Viel, my sorry ass and actor Andy Bradshaw.
. Co writing a screenplay for a film and then acting in that same film is rewarding enough. Seeing that film completed and with a crowd is another perk. But going to England to see the film you partook in as it premieres in Europe; well that's a whole other ballgame, one that I totally appreciated. Seeing RECON 2022 in England with director Christian Viel, star Andy Bradshaw and my brother Pat in tow was quite the hoot. And being that this was my first time in England, that I got to finally meet a long time internet friend face to face (Fettdog you the man!) and got to enjoy the slick city on numerous levels... well I couldn't have asked for more. Groovy times!
First still from TRANCE.
. My horror/action screenplay TRANCE has a weird history tagged to it. It started off as a commissioned treatment for a sequel to a horror hit. When that didn't pan out, I thought, hey, I dig the ideas in here, lets just change the title, tweak it a bit and turn it into a stand alone. Then another party showed interest in it and optioned the script. The option ran its course, film didn't get made and the rights reverted back to me.
Then, I entertained directing the damn thing myself, since my pet project THE RED HOURS didn't look like it wanted to budge. But after that, another party took interest and optioned the script and next thing you know it got bought and shot by yet ANOTHER party. The film was directed by Hans Rodionoff and it starred Dominique Swain and Jeremy London. Its set to be released next year. Never thought that script would end up where it did but hey, its all good. Big thanks to Donny Broussard and Christian Viel for their assistance in getting this deal finalized.
Dominique Swain - star of TRANCE.
Lake Louise = WOW!
. One of the biggest joys of being in the film industry is how much you can LOVE life when you're not around it. That's exactly what went down when I took a left-field trip with my bother Pat to Calgary to go hook up with my cousin Eric. Once there, we rented a car and hit BC, cannoned the awe inspiring Lake Louise, explored the many mountain sites/nature inclined areas and even checked into a resort in the rocky mountains to chill the f*ck out and just enjoy "being". This trip was easily the most rewarding of my "recharge get-aways" of 2007. I got to have distance from the damn computer and the ever-ringing phone and got to just enjoy life the way it was meant to be enjoyed; free of society imposed structure and complications. It was me and nature. ALL GOOD!. Man did life make sense!
Wish this could be everyday...
Actor Deke Richards, Exec producer Berge Garabedian, Director Christian Viel and me at the RECON 2022 Fantasia premiere.
. In 2007, I had two films that I was involved in play at one festival: The Fantasia Film Festival that is. The first film was DEADEN which I wrote, starred in and co produced and the other was RECON 2022 which I co wrote and starred in. To be honest, I was pretty damn pumped for DEADEN in particular since it was finally playing in its home town (Montreal that is) for the first time, after premiering at Sitges 2006. The screening itself went very well and the audience seemed to have "gotten" the film. What else can you ask for! RECON 2022 faired just as well, so in the end, you had one drunk and fulfilled camper on your hands.
PRESENTING DEADEN AT FANTASIA
"THE RED HOURS TEASER SHOOT"
Actress Anna Jaeger as Audrey in THE RED HOURS teaser.
. If you've been with the site long enough, than you know of my pet project THE RED HOURS, a Lynch meets TCM horror film that I wrote in 2000 and always planned to shoot. Got close many o times throughout the years as to getting the film off the ground, right down to getting a B+ cast attached (an actor from Dawson's Creek and an actress from Buffy), but alas shit would always fall through for one reason or another.
This year, I decided to stop relying on others and start getting the ball rolling myself i.e. via my own bank account. My run started with THE RED HOURS teaser trailer which I shot and am now editing and will continue with THE RED HOURS short (which I'm prepping) and then hopefully the feature. Shooting some of RED HOURS was hugely satisfying in itself and hopefully will get the ball rolling in terms of leading me to the feature. If not, well, I hope to get that f*cking project out of my f*cking system already, so I can let it go in 2008 and MOVE ON!
Directing Anna... she looks great with an axe in hand : )
"LOSING OUT ON DEATH RACE"
Me in costume/makeup for DEATH RACE. Yup, was supposed to play a choir boy ; )
. If there's something I never had any luck with in my life that's "timing". I thought I was over that curse with DEATH RACE but I thought wrong. Long story short. Auditioned for a villain part in Paul Anderson's DEATH RACE remake and nailed the role. Was given a shooting date and all was well. Then the Sitges Film festival kicked in and I gave them my okay as to me attending, knowing that DEATH RACE was shooting a week earlier. In fact to be on the safe side, I booked my Sitges plane ticket 3 days later, knowing damn well that productions are often delayed, hence wanted to put all chances on my side. Than it began, my shoot date got pushed back, pushed back and pushed back.
Next thing you know I'm slated to shoot in DEATH RACE the day before I am to leave for Sitges - all good, at least I made it, on the dot, but I made it. So I show up on set, get my makeup done, get in costume, say "wassup" to Jason Statham and then go inside my trailer to wait to be called on set for my bit with Statham. Sadly, instead of "you're on", the knock on my door said "you're wrapped for the day and we're shooting you next week instead". Being that I was leaving for Sitges the next day, I had to give up on the part, they recast it and off to Spain I went. A big let down for me since I tried everything on my end for it to happen and really wanted to be in that film (I love Paul Anderson and Statham). I guess it wasn't meant to be. Oh well, there's always next time!
F*CK YOU CIGARETTES!
I smoke cigarettes... a lot. Like 2 packs a day and my trip to "pure air" Calgary/BC inspired me to quit smoking. So I did. After surviving a bad case of ZYBAN (that shit got me so high) and being in the worse mood for days, it stuck and for two weeks I didn't smoke. I know, big whoop, but trust me, for me that was a HUGE deal since I have quite the "addictive personality". Two weeks in I felt very secure of having kicked this nasty habit, but then life got rough, stress got high and I broke and lit up. Now I'm back to 2 packs a day again. Am pissed at myself for breaking, since I was doing so damn well... but what can you do, you fall off the whore and then you just get back on. Will try to quit AGAIN in 2008... lets see what happens...grrr...f*cking cigarettes... if they weren't bad for me and addictive, I wouldn't be having this problem. : )
In the editing room with Eric Red!
Me and the JoBlo.com crew in San Diego. Thx for the great times at the Con!
I had other negatives this year but they were too personal in nature for me to share here. Lets just say I had a lot of conflicts with people within my immediate/semi immediate circles. Either I'm becoming an a-hole or my tolerance level for a-holness is going down - not sure yet. On a positive note, I got to do some 4 wheeler, hiking, kayaking, snowmobiling and skiing in 2007. I also went to Boston and grooved to the city with King JoBlo, had a blast at the San Diego Comic Con with the fine JoBlo.com Crew and I made new friends.
Furthermore, I got to ride my first Helicopter, once more attended my fav Festival - The Sitges Film Festival (where RECON 2022 played), survived the AFM (And got to hang with my boy Chris White!), got to spend some amazing times in LA with Eric Red (and his awesome family), got to see some of 100 FEET being cut in the editing room, AITH's Jimmy-O got me a personalized Sly Stallone autograph (yup, its a big deal to me) and business brought me to the wonderful city of New York, one that I now appreciate so much more. So yeah... I have a lot to be thankful for : )
VIVA STIGES 2007!
Time Square baby! Love it!
How will I be tackling 2008? Well I'll be trying new things. Now I do have a slew of projects up in the air, but until they are locked in stone and the check clears, no point in getting excited. With that said, my motto this year is: if it scares you - do it. I'm gonna be thinking outside the box in 2008, hit the same doors but from different angles and make bold moves on a professional and personal level.
Its like I always say, life doesn't change if you don't provoke it - so I'm in WAR MODE for 2008, ready, willing and able to do what I have to do to shake shit up and bring it all to the next level. Like Stallone said: "If it's not broken, break it. That's how new discoveries are made. That's why everything that changes life is called a breakthrough." Will I fail? Will I succeed? No matter- all that counts is that I do my utmost best. That's all I have control on. I'll also try to think of myself more. I tend to put people I care about before myself and this year, it kind of became to my own detriment. I have to be more selfish, I know that now.
Me likey Helicopters!
At the AFM with hombre, writer/director Chris White.
With that said, thank you all for still kicking it on the site, thanks to my bang-on staff for the hard work/solid back-up throughout the year, thanks to my friends for being there & telling it to me like it is and thanks to my family for the support. I wish you all a positive 2008! Own it! Don't let it own you!
KILL 2007 AND CHARGE 2008!
HAPPY NEW YEARS TO ALL!