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Placable and Patient



It is official; we did NOT win the Openfilm.com contest. I am not shocked, but I am a little disappointed. Who wouldn’t be? I did however have over six months to get used to the idea of NOT winning, so it all worked out.

Now they did announce the winner and it was Patrick Boivin. This guy is an amazing filmmaker. He made the IRON BABY trailer that was awesome. He also does a lot of innovative stop motion, like with a vintage AT-AT Star Wars toy as a puppy, or action figures having epic battles. He has millions of views for his movies on YouTube. However, his entry into the contest was a French language zombie clown movie that sucked ass. The contest was supposed to be for a short film that can be made into a feature film.

I’m trying to wrap my brain around the idea of the director of ON GOLDEN POND Mark Rydell or Robert Duvall voting for the zombie clown movie. Something stinks. I expected the movie from Katie Maholic with the kids to win or the other movie with the actor Kevin Durand (from LOST and X-MEN ORIGINS WOLVERINE) to win, because their actual movies were great, but without the millions of YouTube views, I guess they didn't really have a chance.



Because of that, I think it is unlikely this (or any online contest) was real. I think they already knew who they wanted to give the prize to and we were all just patsies who paid for the privilege to promote their website for a month to make the owners look good to their sponsors.

I had a friend, a standup comedian, who told me about his experience with contests. He said that they are almost always rigged. They already know who they want to win before they start and that all of the contestants and entry fees do nothing but promote and pay for the contests. I now believe he is 100% right.

Before anyone finds me to just be a bitter, sore loser, the truth is that if I were in their position; I’d have probably given Patrick the prize too. It makes business sense. He has millions of followers and fans. He has proven that he makes movies a lot of people want to see. Mr. Boivin will probably make a great film, so my only regret was wasting $75 and a month of MY time.

Win some and lose some, they say. Business is business and I hope nothing but the best for a very talented filmmaker who deserves his shot to make a real feature film with decent money. Just don’t expect me to ever enter a contest like this ever again.


Posted by: Peter John Ross on Jun 19, 2011 at 6:35:41 pm openfilm.com, james caan

Considerable Commensuration



PROGRESS! As I may have mentioned, after Alex I increased our intern numbers to 3. My biggest trouble is coming up with enough work for everyone, at least work that is within their skillset and in the time I have along with my own duties. I thought handing them the Cell Phone Monologues was more an exercise, but instead they have some pretty solid fin cuts done on both of them.

I still have to do the final cuts, but the big part of the jobs is done. I love the collaboration. I like getting other people’s opinions and debating the merits of creative decisions. I respect people who just say what they think when it comes to the work. If I agree or disagree, I’d rather just be out with it in terms of what people think. It’s easy to take it when it comes to work. I guess some people are ultra sensitive about their movies, but I learned a long time ago that criticism of a movie is not criticism of the person.



Audio presents the greatest challenge on these. I’ll spend a few weeks in my spare time tweaking and playing with it. I don’t think there will be a score but sound fixes and sound design will be pretty in depth for 2-3 minute long short films.

Have you ever fallen asleep on your arm and then when you shook your arm it’s all tingly because it fell asleep? I may be experiencing that, but inside my entire soul. Or it’s just the last gasps of a great chasm of deep blackness. I’ll let you know in another blog or two.


Posted by: Peter John Ross on Jun 16, 2011 at 2:19:45 pm

Intemperance and Insinuation



This week I started teaching film and video at a school, as a new part time job. These first few days were more acclimating myself to their style and methods. I like teaching. I believe firmly in my methods but it is not for everyone. I try to impart that the “rules” are there as guides, but they are not gospel. They help establish the tenants of modern film and video, as they are less rules as much as methods and cinematic tricks that have been effective time and again for those who have been making movies all along.



Paid editing work ramps down in a week or so. That means getting caught up on FRAMELINES kicks in. Hopefully I can also get these two short films long since shot completed this month as well. Long overdue, getting these complete and out in the world will feel good.

I am not myself right now. I feel numb all over. Nothing excites me much. I don’t care about anything beyond some fleeting emotions. No matter what I do, there is no excitement or passion at the moment. I don’t have extremes of anger or happiness. It makes me somewhat of a bore. I’m still not fit for long social engagements.

Something will break soon with that. I just need a kickstart.


Posted by: Peter John Ross on Jun 10, 2011 at 8:55:36 pm

The Vaunting of Ventures



In my quest to be more productive, there have been some successes and failures on my part. I wanted to do editing on these short films and hour a day. That didn’t happen. I had goals in terms of editing on Framelines and Clip Frames and those have been accomplished, including some minor shoots and interviews.

What has been accomplished thus far is over 3.5 hours of content has been shot and edited for Framelines. For Clip Frames, taking a lot of pre-existing material and several short tidbits that needed to be created for the show, I have made a far more impressive 9.5 hours of shows total, and that has been in less than a month. My obsessive-compulsive side will never let it sit at 19 shows, so I’ll have to make one more half hour episode at some point; most likely when I complete these two short films, so it will make a nice excuse to create a show and get these pieces seen shortly after finishing them.

If only I could lower my standards for Framelines, alas that is not to be. I’m working on the two 48 Hour Film Project Episodes which completely break format for the show. These are unique episodes to the run because several of the segments are all in one. We did a roundtable to cover the interviews, featured filmmakers, and on location. The whole episodes are a “spotlight on” the 48 Hour Film Project. The only thing missing are tech tips, but we did shoot something simple with several filmmakers on their advice to people doing a movie in 48 hours, so we kinda DO have tech tips, but I don’t know if I’ll use them.

My quest to watch more movies is succeeding a bit more. My latest double feature was the Blu Ray Director’s Cut of ALIEN and the Special Edition of ALIENS. Aside from one blatant biological discrepancy between these two movies, the alternate versions of both movies are superior to their originals. I am trying to force myself to watch a movie at home or at the $1 Theater every other night. I have fallen out of the habit of watching films and that is something I don’t want to do.

I start a 2nd job next week teaching film and video at a school.


Posted by: Peter John Ross on Jun 2, 2011 at 8:32:22 pm

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