Saturday, 26 September 2009

College Humo[u]r

A while ago, I had an email from Sarah Schneider of, who must work damn hard, saying that one of our videos had had over 75,000 views, and because of their new policy they can now give us money when that sort of thing happens. We here are all big fans of being given money to do things we like, and could definitely use it to buy larger supplies of paint and glue and videotape maybe, so if you like our films please watch them here if you can - I made a profile to upload the one minute one take videos myself, but someone keeps beating me to it, which is all very convenient as I don't have to worry about high quality exporting and file sizes and other time-wasting stuff.

So just in case you missed the links above -

For Forrest Gump, click here.

For Kill Bill, click here.

For 28 Days Later, click here.

Or, preferably, click all three. Extra points if you get yourself a College Humor profile and click the "Like" button on the pages.

Hah, memories. Back in 2004, my friend Josh gained the admiration of our late-teenage social group by getting an email posted in one of their articles. It was one of those furious sweary articles that were popular then, back when online writers were largely anonymous, and believed that no blurry Realplayer videos, flash cartoons or low-resolution webcomics could ever replace writing angry angry words, preferably in white text against a black background. It's weird seeing it now, five years later, with links to Digg and Reddit and Stumbleupon and all the social networking sites and a nice photo of the guy who wrote it. Now College Humor has got videos and user profiles and even its own TV show, such a wide variety of stuff, and that sort of pent-up, vaguely secretive online fury at the world seems so dated. Maybe I'm wrong.

That last paragraph didn't have anything to do with anything. Oh well.



Friday, 25 September 2009

28 Days Later, in one minute, in one take

Told you so!

The first one we made in two days, including about four hours to edit. The second one we made in about a week, including about six hours to edit. This one took at least a month to make, including two days to edit, during which Rocco and Joe introduced me to their friend Cass Lowe and his fantabulous sound recording equipment. Before we'd just used the same camera to film ourselves talking when we needed to dub stuff.

When we came to stick some music over the top, we hit a slight hiccup. The well-known music from 28 Days Later falls into two categories. The first type is so completely, soul crushingly bleak that as soon as you hear its grim repetitive chords you know that there is no hope for anything, no possibility of survival, no chance of happiness, the only thing even darkly comic being humanity's pathetic struggle against its own insurmountable doom; the other is AM 180 by Granddaddy. It was tough finding something that was both sort of dramatic without making you want to die. So Cass decided to record a Bossa Nova version of John Murphy's In a Heartbeat. It was fun watching him scat fake Portugese. I hope he'll send me a high quality version of the song soon. In addition he introduced me to the wonders of panning, so that when you hear this video in stereo sounds on the right will actually come from your right speaker etc. Knowing someone who can do sounds is basically fantastic.

[edit] Cass has now given me his myspace page, , and asked me to call him Cass Lowe. Okey dokey.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

An update


There seems to have been a bit of a pause here. As there will be an update on a specific new thing very very soon, I thought I'd better fill you in on what's been happening in the past four months.


The theatrical version of Hedwig and the Angry Inch I directed has come and gone. It did really well, and was loads of fun. It's all a bit of a haze now, but I think I managed to get by without yelling at anyone, which was good, or organising a drama game, which fills me with a weird sense of pride. And putting together what was for all intents and purposes an actual rock band was awesome. It was a collaborative effort, and I should probably write a long list of people who need to be thanked, but that might be quite long, so I'll save it for another time. We filmed the last night, and I'm slowly editing that together, and I want to make a big file for all the paintings and photoshops people did for the set and posters and projections. Until then I'll just post a couple of samples. These ones are painted, made and photographed by Alice Cox:


We told a lot of people we'd do Star Wars. All of Star Wars. I mean the prequels, that Clone Wars animated movie, the Holiday Special, the originals, maybe even reference some of the cartoons in between. So, with about a week to go for many of our final essay deadlines, we all sat in Vanbrugh bar with Wikipedia in front of us and tried to reduce every single film down to its bare bones, with a main character moving through it.

Then we realised it was completely impossible.

Sure, maybe if we'd just picked one trilogy, cut out the stories of some minor characters, and reused some cardboard spaceships, but that felt like a cop out. But then, maybe everything would be a confusing horrible cop out. And the Star Wars parodies and tributes make up about half the content of Youtube, which felt very disheartening.

So we decided to go in a different direction.

The comments were funny.

On the plus side, we have done another "proper" one, for which we've put in loads of effort and our largest supply of cardboard yet. Uploading that made me realise I should probably write something explaining what had happened in the big blog gap, in case anyone was desperate to know.


I got a hat and everything.

That's pretty much the story so far. But more to come very very very soon...