Archives for jdietz

Ted Hope Shares 99 Steps for Making Good Movies;

Check out producer (and iW blogger) Ted Hope’s 99 Recommended Steps for Making Good Movies:

1. Maintain wonder & love for the world & most/some of the people.
2. Recognize the barriers & be empowered by my desire for change.
3. Find an inspiring idea & the correct collaborator for it.
4. Maintain love & respect for the film industry.
5. Develop script.
6. Fall in love with project.
7. Get non-financier, non-buyer industry types to give feedback on script.
8. Maintain wonder & love for the process.
9. Further develop script.
10. Maintain respect for collaborator(s).

<read the full list here> @ <http://blogs.indiewire.com/>

Over all there’s a lot of being really postive, passionate, not being a dick, planning smart and working hard…  Common sense, but I always like to see these things in print.

On the theme of lists, I’m gonna add a <bonus 200 screenwriting tips podcast link here>  The 200 tips are in episode #200, but I would highly reccomend all of Pilar Alessandra’s podcasts…

10 Ways Steven Spielberg Has Made the World a Better Place

This has been a big year for Steven Spielberg — he’s launched two TV shows, including last night’s Terra Nova, and produced countless movies. The Spielberg tribute Super-8 was a surprise hit, and it’s become fashionable for other film-makers to claim they’re paying tribute to early Spielberg. Still ahead this year: the huge motion-capture reinvention ofTintin, the Belgian adventure comic… <read the full story here> @ <http://io9.com/>

Spielberg is a legend…  When it comes to high spectacle story telling, he’s probably done more than anyone.  This is just a nice little kudo list of accomplishments that he’s not usually recognized for, so I thought it interesting and deserving.  Here’s a quick look at the list of ten, the article has full descriptions.  I’m counting at least 5 on the list as truly innovative, and having to drive Hight Concept / High Spectacle films.  So it’s no wonder we’re fans!

10 ) Being an early adopter and innovator of CGI

9 ) Keeping science fiction alive on TV

8 ) Taking on tough adaptations/re-imaginings, and making them happen

7 ) Showing that video games could be a viable storytelling tool.

6 ) Preserving and shaping the memory of World War II

5 ) Co-founding a successful new studio, and helping bring back animated films

4 ) Bringing back the Saturday morning serial

3 ) Helping to make robot uprising the new zombie apocalypse

2 ) Bringing back our sense of wonder

1 ) Helping to create the idea of the movie “blockbuster.”

big week for zombies…

First off the trailer for the Dead Island videogame is going to get a movie adaptation.


That’s what I said, the trailer, for the video game is getting a movie deal, from all reviews it’s not from the game itself.  And yes, it’s sounds of a decent size…  Lionsgate size.  Here’s what Lionsgate bossman Joe Drake has to say about it:

The film Dead Island will be an innovation of the zombie genre because of its focus on human emotion, family ties and non-linear storytelling.
Like the hundreds of journalists and millions of fans who were so passionate and vocal about the Dead Island trailer, we too were awestruck.
This is exactly the type of property we’re looking to adapt at Lionsgate – it’s sophisticated, edgy, and a true elevation of a genre that we know and love. It also has built in brand recognition around the world, and franchise potential.

It is a badass little trailer though… but a movie deal?  Zombies have serious pull!

<Read the full story here> and there’s another write up about it <here>

 Second, one of the most memorable zombies from ‘The Walking Dead’ is getting her own story. AMC will put a six-part web series online on October 3rd telling the tale of the infamous ‘Bicycle Girl.’  This is her:

The Walking Dead's infamous 'Bicycle Girl' will be the subject of special webisodes

It’s been a long and grueling wait for The Walking Dead‘s many fans – but the wait for new zombiefied action just got a little shorter: AMC will be airing six short webisodes next Monday, just two weeks before the season 2 premiere.

The short stories will focus on a character who’s infamous for Dead heads, the crawling, bisected zombie girl that Rick Grimes encounters just after leaving the hospital in last year’s pilot episode. Show writers calls the character “Bicycle Girl.” The forthcoming webisodes follow the life of the girl named Hannah leading up to her death, un-death, and finally the iconic meeting with Rick.

So this zombie basically got her own spinoff.   Serious, serious pull…

Here’s a little making of clip:

<read the full story here>

Ohhhh, as long as we’re on the track I just have to add this:

 

Third, comics creator Chris Moreno returns to horror with his new creator-owned comic book “Zombie Dickheads Are NOT Coming to Get You,” debuting in October.

“Zombie Dickheads” is a comedic look at the undead apocalypse from the zombies point-of-view. It follows four dysfunctional zombies who don’t eat human flesh, as they attempt to find a place of their own in a world where they don’t fit in amongst other zombies, humans, and each other.

<read the whole story here> and check out the website here <http://zombiedickheads.blogspot.com/> and the website has an 8 page preview that I totally recommend.

To sum up, maybe you need to go to the after life to get greenlit in this life.  Gotta go write my zombie film now…

 

Doing Business in China

 Voilà  It's the moment of truth: Michael Lee sketches out how a complex flow of cash and debt will see his company's massive Nanjing project through to completion.

Packed into a cramped conference room in his company’s modest offices in NanjingChina, Lee’s key managers are at one another’s throats. The more angrily they spit blame at one another for the disastrous, unsalvageable situation the company finds itself in, the more enervated Lee seems to become, until finally he is no more than a slumped statue following the action only with slight movements of his eyes…  <read the full article here>  @  <http://www.inc.com/>

This is a great starter article on the subject.  The whole process of doing business in Asia is fascinating, and from our standpoint a necessity.  There is so much potential with making films in China.  The crews are great, the locations are places for the west that look like they come from another planet.  Creatively the Chinese are committed to making fantastic films for the world audience.  My dealings so far with the Chinese, (shot a film there) have been great.

I’m also reading a great book on the subject that I highly recommend…  The Art of the Deal in China

Anyone has any experiences on the subject, I’d LOVE to start a conversation!

new ‘prometheus’ synopsis offers a few more vague hints

The Alien xenomorph

The latest short description of Ridley Scott’s ‘Prometheus’ reveals a bit more information about the film – and seems to align with certain rumors about Scott’s newest sci-fi flick…  <read the full story here> @ <http://screenrant.com/>

Ahhhhhh it’s about the very meaning of human existence…  cool!  I am sooooo ready to see this one!

Hong Kong Thriller REVENGE: A LOVE STORY at Fantastic Fest!

This time we’re looking at Hong Kong thriller Revenge: A Love Story. After the shitty crap-show that was Human Centipede 2 I needed a great flick to cleanse my palate and I found that very palate cleanser in Revenge: A Love Story… <read the full review and get a couple more pics here> @ <http://www.aintitcool.com/>

I read about this one somewhere else and am keen to see it even more so after this review.  It’ll probably come to the hoyts down town, so I’ll write about it after I check it out.  Lot’s of great Noir’ish films coming out of Korea and HK.  It would be great to see it get picked up with North America distribution.  It’s very similar to a film we’re in the final throws of nailing down the contract.  More to come on that one!

first trailer declares “john dies at the end” an instant cult classic

It’s a combination that has piqued out interest from day one, one that offers the potential of something truly remarkable.Bubba Ho Tep and Phantasm director Don Coscarelli has spent the past year hard at work on a film adaptation of David Wong’s John Dies At The End, a brilliant and often hysterical cult hit scifi horror mashup… <read the story and see the trailer here> @ <http://twitchfilm.com/>

This is looking pretty cool.  I’m digging some of the horror element designs.  Cult Classic?  Don’t know about going that far, but I’d definitely check it out.  Next year we’re gonna have to hit up Fantastic Fest…  Awesome movies there, and a great excuse to get to Austin.  I’ll do a post about the festival itself one of these days.

listen to stephen king read a chapter from the sequel to the shining

At an awards ceremony at George Mason University last Friday, Stephen King regaled audiences with a chapter from Doctor Sleep, his upcoming novel about a grown-up Danny Torrance from The Shining…  <read the full story here>

I’m excited about this book.  I was never a big fan of Stephen King until a couple years ago when I read the Shining.  I was blown away about the economy of words, and the blatant description.  I plowed through the book in no time.  So I read a couple more of his books, and was thoroughly addicted.  It felt really cheezy, like I was selling out all my love for Dostoyevski and Hemmingway…  Then I read Steven King’s “On Writing”.  (if you haven’t read it, and are a writer of any kind, go out and buy it now!)  Man, that was it…  this guy is a genius up there with the all time greats.  His ideas are amazing, and his craft is impeccable.  I recon he doesn’t get the deserved respect because of the genre he writes in, but hey, what great things he’s done for the genre both in books and in movies!  redrum…

impossible pillars: another natural wonder of the world

 

Seeming to defy the laws of gravity, teetering, spindly mountains tower into the air in a surreal display reminiscent of the floating monoliths in the movie Avatar. This is China’s Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, and its particularly stunning natural beauty can’t be found anywhere else in the world… <see more pics and read the full story here> @ <http://webecoist.com/>

This location is incredible…  We’ll be finding a way to shoot some of Bridge of Birds there for sure!

Director Shawn Levy Talks ‘Real Steel 2,’ ‘Frankenstein,’ & Carlton Cuse

real steel theatrical trailer hugh jackman shawn levy evangeline lily

‘Real Steel’ director Shawn Levy provides a thorough breakdown of a potential storyline for ‘Real Steel 2,’ updates on ‘Frankenstein’ and ‘Fantastic Voyage’ as well as the mystery surrounding his next film with Hugh Jackman…  <read the full article here> @ <http://screenrant.com/>

I’m not the hugest fan of Levy, but he’s got some great stuff coming up.  This is a decent interview as well about his upcoming film “Real Steel” that I’m excited to see.  The cg looks great so far, and the concept is right in our wheelhouse.  Rocky with Robots.  Come on, easy sell right?  I recon it’s gonna be a fun film!  Hopefully the kinda film that kids see and will remember when they grow up…

Ohhhh, and how cool is it that Sugar Ray Leonard is the fight coordinator!  That brings back some memories.  Wide world of sports, Saturday afternoon, Howard Cosell…