What Is My Motivation b/w What I Can See and What I Can Say

What Is My Motivation?

Filmmaking is a risky venture. You put so much money into it expecting a return that mostly doesn’t come immediately or even not at all. Paradoxically the more diverse films are, the more fragmented a large pool of people are and thus it’s difficult to bring as many people as possible to see what you’ve done. So why do it at all? Just like any other medium of art, it stems from a desire to express something meaningful to a larger world.

For myself, I think these three are worth making because they are worth seeing. First, I think of myself as an artist, who has used music in the past and now wants to use film as well. The desire of an artist is to share something of himself to the world at large, whether it’s about a specific moment in life or just about life in general. But these are not just some personal expressions or fictional retelling of my life … far from it. This is about six different and imaginary people who live their lives and form three different intersections. In their choices and actions, they comment in their way about the way we relate to each other, especially in a deeper and more intimate manner. This is something I think is not explored enough, especially in cinema as it is often sacrificed for the sake of expediency or laziness.

Continuing on that last point, I’m concerned about the state of cinema at present. While I’m fully aware about the long standing story of art cheapened for a “quick buck,” it seems that nowadays, it’s been worse. Most of the films made and released on a wide scale currently are sequels, adaptations or the ever-more popular “reboot” or “reimagining.” And sadly, they are just one of them. It begs the question: “is there anything new?” Can’t we dare to venture beyond the comfort zone and explore into uncharted territory?

Granted there is nothing new under the sun and it’s presumptuous to think that it can ever be refuted. But the wonderful aspect about human imagination is that every story can be reduced to some thirty-odd basic plots, we find ourselves telling these same stories yet with many different combinations and results. I refuse to believe that after ten thousand years or so of doing this, we somehow reached a point where the well is now dry. While it’s easy to believe that nothing really happens in the end, the fictional Robert McKee in Adaptation. said it best (via a rant =] ):

“Nothing happens in the world? Are you out of your fucking mind? People are murdered every day. There’s genocide, war, corruption. Every fucking day, somewhere in the world, somebody sacrifices his life to save someone else. Every fucking day, someone, somewhere takes a conscious decision to destroy someone else. People find love, people lose it. For Christ’s sake, a child watches her mother beaten to death on the steps of a church. Someone goes hungry. Somebody else betrays his best friend for a woman. If you can’t find that stuff in life, then you, my friend, don’t know crap about life! And why the fuck are you wasting my two precious hours with your movie? I don’t have any use for it! I don’t have any bloody use for it!”

And so I would add – though may not as colorfully as fictional McKee did it (for now) – “why aren’t we talking about more things? Why are we content with just a narrow band instead of a larger spectrum?”

So the point is that I simply want to see this happen. I believe in these stories and I believe in these characters. I love them dearly as both brainchildren and the dearest of friends. And why should I keep at all to just “something in my head” or a “nice thought experiment”? Why shouldn’t they be given life? Why shouldn’t they be given wings?

What I Can See and What I Can Say

So far, my experience in filmmaking has been very minimal. I’ve been an extra formally and I’ve appeared in a few odd-and-end efforts by others. I’ve written not only these scripts but another one way back in 2005/2006 called Omvendelsen. But other than that, I have nothing directly related to filmmaking. I’m trying to rectify this gap as best as I can as I go through life: surviving day to day, making things better for myself and others in my own small way, etc. But I also don’t believe in just being idle while everything comes to some kind of fruition. The key is always persistence right?

Combine persistence with a sense of ingenuity, you can come up with something that can help convey a vision, which is the essential element for any and all film directors. For myself, I’ve done this in taking the time to write the script, complete with actions and dialogue. Privately, I’ve been adding my own annotations and supplements to convey more details about particular characters or scenes or the film overall to the appropriate personnel. And every now and then, I let something out to a larger public about how I see it.

In this case, I’ve travelled around Boston – which is something I end up doing anyway – and tried to “see the film.” This was of course very important in writing as it depended on being able to visualize a location and therefore visualize how characters would interact in that space in addition to how they would travel along the path you’ve envisioned them to traverse. As I was completing the scripts (and even long after completing them), I took as many opportunities to take as many different pictures as I could of the various locations I had in mind for each of the three. These are all at the very least an aid in visualizing the story at various points as best as one man could.

They can all be found here (in chronological order by each story)

As things develop and/or I have the time to say more and add more, I will do so in due time. Until then …

Onward and upward … DJP


Some Slight Rearrangements

To make things more concrete and less abstract, I’ve included summary pages (under the “About” page) for each of the three films. They include a brief summary (think TV listing or DVD back cover material), synopsis (much more detailed, emphasizing key points in the story), a list of the characters and their role and a link to the scripts. For fun, I’ve also indicated the source of each title.

As time goes on, I hope to have more explanations about the characters and how I see this for anyone who is interested at all in helping me make this possible. I’ll also continue to improve this space to make sure information is presented clearly and well. Stay tuned for more.

Onward and upward … DJP

General Crew Call

This is the same idea as the previous post except this is for key personnel for the film.

Here are the essential department heads and key figures I need:

  • Co-Producer(s)
  • Casting Director
  • Line Producer/Production Manager
  • Assistant Director
  • Cinematographer/Director of Photography
  • Production Designer
  • Editor

I’m trying to get the bare essentials first and then we work on filling other positions if and when necessary. This may be a situation where one role has to take on several for the sake of efficiency and expediency. I am not interested in having more personnel than we absolutely need.

If there’s a key position or role that I have forgotten to list here, forgive my ignorance and let me know if you are interested in it. But keep in mind, I didn’t want to list every role here since a great many of them stem from what I think are the foundational people listed here. Nevertheless, if you are interested in helping out in any way, please let me know.

Ideally I would like some consistency and thus I would like one to remain for each of the three films. However since working on three films at once can be a burden, I can see an assistant to each of the key positions for each film. That assistant will be responsible for whatever grunt/screwdriver work is needed for that particular film and then can bring all of that information to the senior and thus to me.

What I would like also is someone who knows how to do the job – either through experience or demonstration of knowledge – and more importantly who are interested in helping me to realize these films.

And like I said before, I can’t make any promises or offers because I have nothing thus far. What I’m really interested in and what I want at this point is an idea of who would be interested in helping me with this particular endeavor. I will try to get some kind of compensation for services rendered especially for the key department heads and production figures.

Lastly, this production should be kept in Massachusetts and particularly those are either local to or can easily reach the greater Boston area.

If you are interested, please contact me at djproject @djproject.cc with the desired position in the subject line as a resume and an explanation of why you see yourself in that role.

Thank you … DJP

P.S. I’m still interested in people who want to play one of the six leads

General Casting Call

Call this my Christmas gift to one and all.

While I need anybody and everybody who can make these films a reality, the key ingredient for all of them are … the talent and particularly the lead roles.

When I was writing them, I had some idea of who they would look like. However I tried very hard not to put so much stock in figments of my imagination. And I certainly don’t have any illusions I can get any known actor/actress I would want. Plus I have no idea who would be good for it. Nevertheless, the point is I wrote it with an open mind as far as appearance and focused much more on the character itself and their respective course, both in the film and beyond it.

At any rate, here are my general expectations as far as each of the lead roles, alphabetized by character’s last name:

  • Sophia Avery (All That We Are): female, 24-28
  • Joachim Bainbridge (Walk in Silence): male, 25-30
  • Ana Dukich (Walk in Silence): female, 33-38 … Serbian is a definite plus but she should pull off the look
  • Elena O’Keeffe (On Nights Like This): female, 23-29 … since she will also play Nicole Bryne, she should pull off someone younger (23-25) but definitely should pull off the more older side (26-29)
  • Thomas Ritchard (All That We Are): male, 35-40
  • Christopher Waterson (On Nights Like This): male, 25-30

I could be more specific and add some key character traits, traits associated with occupation (i.e. Thomas Ritchard is a professor and should pull that off) and traits associated with the story (there is a lovemaking scene written in On Nights Like This) but I want to cast my net as wide as possible first.

Also I can say this with all honesty. Right now, I have and know nothing: no budget, no schedule, no backers, no crew, no equipment … nothing. Therefore I can’t make any promises about anything. I say this because I don’t want to create unrealistic expectations or give false impressions. All I’m really doing at this moment is asking if there is anyone out there who would like to do this.

If you are interested, please contact me at djproject @djproject.cc with the character’s name as the subject line as well as a headshot, resume (if applicable) and an explanation of why you see yourself in that particular role.

Thank you … DJP

Staring at the Sea

They say it is useless to wait for your ship to arrive unless you’ve sent one out. This here is my shipping order =]

My goal is to get each of these films produced after having written them. But I cannot do this alone … especially since these will be my first feature-length films. I know what I want but I need help getting there. And so I send my ship out in hopes of a safe return richer than when it left.

If you reside in or near the greater Boston area and are interested in being one of the talents (especially the main roles) or the crew (especially the department head positions), contact me at djproject @djproject.cc

If you want to donate to cause, you can use PayPal and the address to use is relate3 @djproject.cc

Otherwise, please spread word about this particular blog as this will be the center of all activity and announcements about the project.

In the mean time, I’ll be performing on my own networking efforts and cooking up some other things related to the project.

Onward and upward … DJP

The Story Thus Far

For the past year, I’ve been working on three scripts to three films I wish to make. They all center on a couple living in the greater Boston area. Yet they and their journey are unique and parallel with no point of intersection. The point of it was two-fold: 1) to challenge myself to create a unique storyline and characters and 2) to provide many options. After all, why not provide multiple stories for different people?

Without getting into too much detail for the moment, I want to say working on these have helped me go through a really dark and rough patch. While things have not been completely resolved, I can say that I’m better now than I was a year or two ago. And while there were other things that helped me along the way, writing these scripts was a major factor in pulling me out of a dark spell.

And now … to make the effort to see these realized from the page to the screen …

Onward and upward … DJP

Hello and Greetings

Welcome to my blog dedicated to three films grouped under the name “The Relationship Triptych”: On Nights Like This, All That We Are and Walk in Silence.

The purpose of this is to chronicle the journey making these films into a reality as well as the personal journey to break into the world of filmmaking. This is also a way of sharing what I’ve done so far and ask for assistance along the way, either it’s contributing talent, treasure or even just piece of mind or a sense of peace.

I hope you enjoy reading this journey and come back often.

Onward and upward … DJP