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Confessions of a Working Director - 3/10/2009

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For the past couple of weeks, Jim Wayer, Trevor Williams, and I have been overhauling Wicked Pixel Cinema's Avid editing suite.  I am lucky to have Jim's and Trevor's support because they are a couple of very intelligent dudes.  It is their research efforts that enabled us to get maximum bang for the buck in rebuilding our post-production department.  Adding icing to the cake, Trevor kindly donated two brand new monitors to the room!

It looks like the first two movies to be edited on the new system are Jessie Seitz's feature, FIVE, and RATLINE.

Jim Wayer and I work here at Wicked Pixel Cinema full time, pulling long hours and juggling a ton of responsibilities.  I think adding the new editing suite responsibilities pushed us over an edge.  I've been feeling terrible the past few days - and today Jim looked like he'd been run over by a truck.

When you generally work twelve hours a day, six days a week, you can only pile so much additional work on top before it takes a toll on your body.  I think Jim and I are hitting a wall.

Jessie Seitz, Jason Christ, Gus Stevenson, and sometimes Trevor Williams work here on a part-time basis.  Though they are not physically here as much as Jim and I are, I can see these guys really wearing out as well (except for Trevor, who must be nuclear powered, given his seemingly endless supply of energy, enthusiasm, and humor). 

Doing what we do is a double-edged sword.  At one extreme, we are overjoyed to be working on a movie and putting so much time and effort into an organization we believe in, and love being a part of.  At the other extreme, our enthusiasm to contribute as much as possible, as often as possible, can wear us down physically and emotionally.  If I could afford it, I'd buy us all a week's vacation on a sunny beach somewhere, just to give the team a chance to unwind.

Yesterday, instead of an ocean-side vacation, Jim and I decided to call it a day after only working six or seven hours.  Trust me, this felt like a vacation, comparatively.  Jim went home and watched Mystery Science Theater 3000 DVDs. 

I went home and started watching my recently acquired Karim Hussain DVD box set.  So far, I've only watched SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY and its bonus features.  I know Karim has been making movies for years and SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY has been out on DVD since 2005, but I'm just now getting around to seeing this film.  I've been eager to see it since I first heard about it.

I had a long email conversation with Mitch Davis (SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY's producer) years ago, when he contacted me after reading reviews that compared SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY to my film, ICE FROM THE SUN.  Mitch was really cool to talk to and our conversation greatly fueled my desire to see SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY.  I'd like to get in contact with him again to tell him (finally) how much I liked the movie.

The biggest reason it took so long for me to catch this flick is because the DVD is in the PAL standard and I don't own a region free DVD player.  However, I just couldn't wait any longer.  I borrowed a region free player and bought the Karim Hussain DVD box set from Diabolik DVD.  SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY really impressed me, and it was even more impressive knowing that this was Karim's first film.  It was definitely worth the wait.

Now, if anyone in the DVD distribution game is reading this, get off your butt and strike a deal with these guys to release a nice North American NTSC DVD box set.  It is upsetting to me that so much garbage has flooded the American DVD shelves, while fascinating, challenging, and unique work like SUBCONCIOUS CRUELTY goes unreleased here.  There, I said it.

Back to Wicked Pixel Cinema stuff... 

I want to congratulate a member of my team on adding to her exhaustion, as described at the top of this blog. 

Jessie Seitz works incredibly hard at Wicked Pixel Cinema, and at taking her career as far as she can take it.  She has production and post-production credits in more than 20 independent features, shorts, and documentaries.  She co-wrote the story for DEADWOOD PARK and was also the production designer on that shoot.  She is a producer on RATLINE.  She is entering the post-production phase of her feature film directorial debut, FIVE.  She is a successful gothic/alternative model (going by the name "Nos") who has appeared in the pages of Bizarre Magazine, Superbitch, Lollipop, Meat Socket, Ultra Violent, and Gothic Beauty. She is currently going to school full time.  She is a primary mover and shaker on the Wicked Pixel Cinema marketing team.  And, a few days ago (though she has not slowed down in any of these other pursuits) Jessie Seitz got a new job: a fashion / lifestyle writer for Gothic Beauty Magazine.

And she's only 24 years old.

Congratulations, Jessie...  Be sure to take a break now and then.  Jim or I can loan you some DVDs.

Thanks for reading.

Eric Stanze

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