writing & Star Wars

writing & Star Wars

hey friends,

how are y’all doing? sorry I’ve been MIA the last few weeks. July was pretty crazy. lots of traveling, San Diego Comic Con, a bunch of writing, and a nice case of poison oak.

I am going to do a SDCC blog at some point, but right now I’d like to talk about my latest writing adventure. over the past few months I’ve been working on developing the different ideas that would become the next feature screenplay I would write. during the first week in July we determined that the project would be NATURAL ‘STACHE. it’s about Bigfoot, Mustaches, and Bad Choices.

after Comic Con I had a window of time where I’d be free, so I drove back up to Sheep Ranch. this time I planned on mixing up the writing with tree trimming. the woods on the hill above the house were in serious need of some fire prevention work. there is a theory of defensible space that says you need to remove branches lower than 6′ off of trees. the idea is that a tree trunk can withstand a brush fire, but tree branches and leaves cannot. and once the branches and leaves catch on fire – it will rise all the way to the crown and the entire tree will be lost.

so I took my laptop, my new saw, and my index cards up to the old family homestead and went to work.

writing nook

Flock #2

it’s so weird being in the media/info blackout up there. I actually took a few old movies to watch, which I “live tweeted” in my sketch pad… I’ll post that too. one of the things I watched was STAR WARS: UNCUT. for those of you not familiar with the project, a few years ago these guys had an idea – take the movie, cut it into 15 second pieces then let people recreate the scenes on their own.

trust me, it is as insane in practice as it is in theory. to see nearly every element change every 15 seconds is mind blowing. new actors, new sounds, new format, new levels of production values… sometimes C3PO is a drawn, sometimes it’s a person wearing a mask, sometimes it’s an animal, sometimes…. it goes on and on and on.

there were definitely motifs that kept coming up. Obi Wan would have a beard. Han would have a vest. R2D2 would be made partially (or completely) out of a trash can.

I could only watch in 15 minute or so segments, but it soon became one of my favorite fan films ever. It was fascinating how different people decided to recreate the scenes. Did they change the tone? Did they add things? Did they switch character genders? Did they build sets or get costumes?

It amazed me how much STAR WARS had become a part of our culture…and here were a bunch of people retelling it like it was THE ODYSSEY or something. and maybe it IS our ODYSSEY?

you can watch the entire thing here. but for those of you that don’t have two plus hours, I’ve picked out a few for you here.

Star Wars Uncut – Scene 113 – “Hello there” from Malcolm Sutherland on Vimeo.

really this could go on all day. there are so many great takes on the scenes.

so I would watch some re-created Star Wars, write, have some food, wander around, do some tree trimming, write some more. it was a great trip. aside from the poison oak. that wasn’t fun. for those of you that haven’t ever experienced an exposure and reaction to the evil plant – it is truly one of life’s most intense experiences. not saying I recommend it per say, but it really is something incredible.

aaaand I’m very glad to be over it.


p.s. pleased to announce CERTIFIED in three new festivals; The B-Movie Celebration, Twain Harte Film Fest, and The Sacramento Film & Music Festival.

b movie laurel
Twain Harte laurel
Sacramento Film & Music laurel

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