Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Coney Island (re-post)

This is a blatant re-post from Scott's blog:

Friday night, Luci, myself and several friends journeyed to Coney Island for a Brooklyn Cyclones minor league baseball game in Keyspan Park. They barely lost to the Lowell Spinners, 2-1. Immediately following was a spectacular fireworks show. We were able to get so close, we had debris falling in our beers!

Rides were the next call of the night. We started on the Cyclone, then Bumper Cars, Wonder Wheel and to cap it all off, Aaron Nauta, Lindsay Campbell and I braved the Top Spin. We are strapped in the back row, 4th, 5th and 6th from the left respectively. Luci shot this video with our point and shoot camera:

Monday, August 25, 2008

That Spaghetti-Eating Cat

Just another clip from the E! show "The Soup", which did the real work of finding something funny on TV. And it's not even that new. But I just cannot resist the image of the spaghetti-eating cat.

For a while no one knew why the picture of the cat suddenly appeared in the show. But by now it has been explained that the "The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet" covered up an unacceptable word the guest spoke with the photo (and by dropping the audio).

Have a fun Monday.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Music Video: "Pot Kettle Black"

One of my favorite songs this summer:
"Pot Kettle Black" by Tilly & The Wall

Monday, August 18, 2008

Re-re-recycled Television

Another Monday - so I wanted to post another smile-inducing video.

I came across this clip in which America Ferrera lets her face express quite freely how she feels about Gossip Girl. While I was still wondering if this was worth posting, it struck me that this clip, which originally was filmed for Good Day LA on Fox, had then been re-aired (and commented on) by the show "The Soup" on E!, then it had been posted by the website black20.com in their section "Finds", where I discovered it - and am now about to copy the code and re-cycle the clip yet again for my blog (not to mention that the women in the clip are talking about yet another TV show on a totally different network).

Doesn't anybody create actual original content anymore?

So I thought it was worth posting this, just to make that point. Oh, and hopefully to induce a smile.

Okay, now I better get some real work done editing some original footage.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

John August Blog Post

In the process of doing research for possible outreach and grassroots distribution of our documentary All God's Children, I somehow came across a post on the blog of screenwriter and director John August.

The post titled Sundance, The Nines and The Death of Independent Film is a post-mortem recap of the premiere and distribution of his film The Nines and lists five key lessons:

1. Sundance buzz is annoying and meaningless
2. Theatrical release is kinda bullshit.
3. The DVD should have come out much sooner, maybe simultaneously
4. I should have paid a lot more attention to foreign
5. Without an alternative, everyone will just pirate it

I really enjoyed reading this article, not only because of a tiny bit of "Indiefreude" but because the post is full of insights that might be based on discouraging experiences but are rather encouraging if you are considering alternative means of distribution, including self-distribution, anyway.

Fascinating is the rather controversial notion to actually leak a version of the film to be downloaded for free via bit-torrent sites shortly before the official release:
To my thinking, leaking a decent-quality, watermarked version7 would have greatly increased the awareness and discussion of the movie, which could have paid off if the DVD and/or iTunes version were available shortly thereafter.
Ultimately what resonated most with me based on my experience with All God's Children and then shooting and editing my current projects All's Well and Fair and Five Sisters, was the last paragraph titled "Should anyone bother making an indie film?" in which he writes:
My advice? You should make an indie film to make a film. Period. Artistic and commercial success don’t correlate well, and at the moment, only the former is remotely within your control.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Acting Lesson

Over the weekend I finally watched Tamara Jenkins' The Savages, which I thought was excellent but also incredibly depressing. Although I highly recommend the film, I decided that instead of writing about it, I would randomly post a different video to start this week out on a funnier note.

"Acting with James Franco Episode 1: Sense Memory" from Funny or Die.

See more James Franco videos at Funny or Die

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Radiopilot Single

"Monster", the new single from Radiopilot is finally and officially available. And so many options to buy:

On iTunes
The Single on amazon
The EP on amazon

And if you'd like to listen and watch before you buy, here are some videos for the song. Unfortunately for some reason the official video is not available for embed.

But here's the video the Radiopilots made themselves for the acoustic version:

And then there is the "Trash Performance"...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Music Video: Lykke Li

In honor of the Lykke Li (at Williamsburg Hall of Music) tickets having gone on sale 45 minutes ago, here is the acoustic version of "I'm Good, I'm Gone" featuring members of the Shout Out Louds, Robyn and other prominent Swedes.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

The most jet-settingest week ever - and the best friends and family I can imagine

From Friday to Friday I managed to visit a significant amount of places and people who are important and special to me.

Friday I filmed with my dad (for a personal project) in Hamburg and then hung out with my Hamburg friends (some I've known since Kindergarden).

Saturday & Sunday I spent with my entire family in the countryside of Haselau (including an excursion to a music festival to see another friend).

Monday I was back in New York with Scott and on Tuesday I squeezed in a few hours with some of my close Brooklyn friends.

By Wednesday Scott and I were in St. Augustine, Florida with Scott's family.

And this Friday as the crowning conclusion to the most jetsettingest week of my life I made it over to Gainesville, FL to film an undeniably important pick-up shot for All's Well and Fair and even catch up with most of my friends there.

By the end of a week like that I am overwhelmed with gratefulness that I know and remain close with all these amazing people and that they continue to be interested in seeing me and that they make time whenever I suddenly show up.

Thank you and Danke schoen! I'm lucky to have you. Und ich freu mich schon sehr auf's naechste mal!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Obama in Berlin

Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin

Even though I was in Germany while Barack Obama held his speech in Berlin on July 24th, I was not in the state capital at the time and didn't join the 200,000 people attending in person. Of course, there is much to say about the event, the speech, the agenda, the reasons for place and time of the speech, Merkel's refusal to allow him to speak in front of the Brandenburger Tor (although I've always found the "Goldene Else", in front of which he did speak, personally more significant due to the brilliant Wim Wenders film "Der Himmel Ueber Berlin"/"Wings of Desire"), the chances of Obama being elected, the chances that he would deliver what he promises, etc.

But what struck me most during this time is the stark contrast between the conversations with my friends and family today versus the ones during a visit to Europe in the summer of 2001. Right after Bush had taken (over) the office, all I heard was: What's wrong with you? Why did the Americans elect him? He's against the environment (not signing Kyoto agreement) and for killing people (death penalty) and a war monger (threats to attack China - this was pre-9/11).

In 2008 however, I encounter smiles and excitement. Just like in the US, there is a wave of enthusiasm and hope for a brighter, more peaceful future spreading in Europe through the charisma and encouraging speeches of Barack Obama. Again I can't answer the current questions: Will he be elected? Will he hold what he promises? At least I don't look at annoyed faces asking me to explain or justify something I had nothing to do with (I'm not eligible to vote), and instead I just get to smile and nod and say: yeah, maybe everything can get better.

No doubt, Germany would elect Barack Obama as the president of the USA. And for this very selfish reason, I hope the American voters do the same so that on my visit to Europe next year, I might not have to encounter a bunch of grumpy people asking: What's with that war-mongering McCain guy and why did you elect him?