Hey everyone, here’s a bunch of pics and vids of production. We’re wrapping principle photography soon.
Hi there, it’s been a while We’ve been very busy casting, location scouting, re-writing, scheduling and doing a million other things. Next time I’m definitely hiring a line producer!
I’ve been re-writing almost every night for the last month. I’m a perfectionist, so I make alot of changes. This is the second film I have written by myself and I’m getting better, but I would never go out of my way to call myself a writer. I’m lucky to have cast talented actors who will make my script shine. It was inspiring to see my words come to life during the auditions.
I want to thank Justin Karcher and the management of Buffalo East for hosting our auditions. The space worked perfectly and I am very grateful.
Most casting director’s will make an actor wait in a small room outside of the audition space for a long time. Eventually they’ll be called in to do a cold read for an ominous group of people who are all trying to hide behind a mini DV camera. Then the actor leaves and has no idea how they did or where they stand.
I think this process sucks!
Several years ago I was lucky enough to host an audition with Tony Pastor Jr. Tony is a talented and experienced television director who works for Hanna-Barbera. He ran his auditions in a very unconventional manner. Tony invited all of the actors into a large room and freely mixed and matched them as he wanted. He had them read several different parts, asked them to try a variety of different things and then when he was done with someone he would kindly excuse them.
I found it odd at first, because it was very different from what I was used to. But I started to love the energy and freedom it created, so I ran the auditions for Game Changers in the same way. I got to play around with the actors and do whatever I wanted. I would stop them in the middle of takes if I wasn’t feeling it or if I wanted them to try something else. I also gave the actors alot of context and direction, which gave them the opportunity to get comfortable and show me what they were capable of.
It was the most fun I had all year, here are some pics.
I’ve also learned that having an insurance policy can make or break access to locations. We’re going to be shooting most of the film in Tonawanda NY. Keller Insurance and Calamar are going to let us use there cubicles, offices and board rooms. We’ll also be shooting at the Tonawanda castle, North Tonawanda High School and several private residences.
Aside from that, my DP and I have been trying to focus on drafting a shooting schedule. I’ll try to post updates as often as I can, but I’m moving into principle photography, so I’m going to be very busy.
Casting for Game Changers will take place on June 23rd and 24th at the Buffalo East theater. If you would like to audition you must email info@GameChangerstheMovie.com and we will give you an audition time.
Scott, Bryan, Kim and Natalie all work at an IT company named Techscape.
Scott: An ex-professional gamer. He is a funny guy that everyone seems to like, however he gets very nervous around women. He is buried in student loans and takes his job at Techscape seriously.
Bryan: An ex-professional gamer that will do anything to reclaim his gaming glory. He is a quick witted, articulate, natural born leader. Bryan lives and works with Scott. He is the head of the Service department at Techscape.
Kim: A smart, cool, indy chic who enjoys taking photographs and playing vintage video games. She is the new girl at work who takes a liking to Scott.
Jake: A tall, arrogant and handsome guy. His looks and professional attire compensate for how cheesy he can be.
Natalie: A slender, flirtatious women. Her poor judgement gets her into to trouble. She is friends with Kim and head of the Sales department at Techscape.
Mr. Sanders: Mr. Sanders is the owner of Techscape. He is a kind and shrewd businessman. He is Bryan’s father.
Gus: a friend of Alan’s, he is often playing games with the guys. He admires Bryan because of his gaming accomplishments.
Alan: a work friend of Scott’s. He often comes over to the house to play games with Scott and Bryan.
In 1 day we managed to double our donations ending the campaign at $12,335. I want to thank everyone who participated in the telethon, the people who donated and the friends who came by to participate in the Dr. Mario Death Wing Challenge.
The rules were simple, five players each had four chances to beat my girlfriend, Holly Rounseville, at Dr. Mario. The person who lost the most games would be forced to eat the hottest chicken wing in Buffalo, the Death Wing, live during the broadcast.
So after an hour and a half and twenty straight games of Dr. Mario, nobody was able to beat my girlfriend! This sucked, I was positive that I wouldn’t have to eat one, I am particularly sensitive to hot sauce…
So now that the telethon is completed I’m shifting my focus. I’m putting the finishing touches on the script so that we can prepare for casting in June, and principle photography in August. Wish us luck!
We had a very strong start to the campaign, but things have slowed down over the last couple of weeks. I haven’t been spamming my project because I respect people’s twitter feeds and facebook timelines. That said,… we’re less than 2 weeks away from the close of our fundraising campaign. So you may see more tweets and posts as our campaign comes to an end.
We’re going out on a high note!
I’ve spent the last couple of weeks preparing hours of interviews and videos that will be broadcast live on Saturday April 21st at Noon EST. I will touch on every aspect of film production during the telethon, and I managed to snag interviews with Nino Leitner, Benjamin Eckstein, Rob Bessette, Jon Connor and Cristina Valdivieso, Darren Fung, Jacob Albarella, Paul Panfalone, Michael Schmidt and Ian Albinson. These video interviews have all been pre-recorded and are ready to go.
We’re also going to have a bunch of live elements during the broadcast. I’ll be sharing some of my work and I’m going to be improvising musical thank you songs for people who donate during the telethon. We’ve also got a secret live event called the Dr. Mario Deathwing Challenge!
Lastly, I’m headed to NAB next week and I’ll be shooting video from the show floor, at the RED user party, the Supermeet, the Timescapes premiere and the Kessler Party! I’ll have my work cut out for me editing all of that footage together when I get back, but it’ll be cool to share my NAB experience with everyone.
So make sure to stop back on April 21st at Noon EST for hours of insightful, silly, fun!
I’ve been super busy conducting interviews for my 10 hour Game Changers telethon on April 21st. It’s going to be a fun, silly, informative, and entertaining telethon. I’ll post more about it soon.
I’ve also been busy appearing on podcasts to promote the film. I had a great time talking with Kanen Flowers, Scott Simmons and Steve Cohen on That Post Show, and I’m going to be on the Digital Production Buzz and the Halo Council soon.
All that aside, I’ve been working hard on a press release and prepping for local promotions, which go live tomorrow. I’m hitting up a bunch of news stations, magazines, radio stations and news papers. I’ll also be placing palm flyers at local businesss, restaurants and movie theaters. I want to do everything I can to promote the film both locally and online.
A quick shout out to a California based printing company named Got Print. They ship anywhere in the world and were substantially cheaper and faster than any of the local printers I spoke with. I got 2,500, four by six inch, double sided, color flyers for only $74, which is wicked cheap!
Even though I’ve written several scripts, I don’t think of myself as a writer. That said, I’ve developed some tools to help the aspiring screenwriter get started on their masterpiece.
Think of the kind of movies that you like to go see. Do you like comedies, drama’s, sci-fi, westerns? What films do you find the most entertaining? What kind of a film could you see yourself writing? Write down some of your favorite movies on a piece of paper.
Where does your film take place? And when? If you’re not sure, think about possible places and times that you find interesting. The international space station? NYC? The Ganges river basin? Write it down!
Next, and this may seem irrelevant but trust me, think about things that you personally want out of life. Do you have a dream job that you want? Do you want more respect from people? Do you want a better sex life? Write down as many things that you can think of, and be completely honest with yourself becasue no one else is going to read this!
Now think of things that scare you. Are you afraid that you’ll never get out of debt? Do you fear death? Are you afraid to be alone? Pour your heart out on the paper, really think about it.
At this point we already have a good amount of information about your movie.
You know what genre your film is, and you know where the film takes place. You also have a huge list of fears and desires that your characters can have. Most people are too scared or principled to write characters that reflect themselves; but from my experience, the process moves a lot smoother when I can relate to the people I’m writing about. By examining yourself you will awaken insight into characters that you may want to create. The best characters out there are rooted in very real desires and fears, use yours!
Download and print off this character profile sheet. It asks a ton of questions, which will help you get a better understanding of who your characters are.
After the first 2 weeks of initial excitement, I’m continuing to push forward. I’ve had an oppurtunity to bring Game Changers directly to gamers. I’m making friends over in the MLG forums and was able to get on some popular gaming podcasts. The Starcast, and the Drunken Halo podcast were nice enough to have me on. This week I will be on Podtacular and I just got confirmation from pro gamer Gandi that I will be appearing on the Halo Council, a popular show on the twitchTV network.
I want to thank everyone for their help over the first two weeks of our campaign. Keep spreading the word, I know we can hit our goal!
Over the last week I’ve been reaching out to the gaming community. Game Changers is about professional gamers, so it makes sense for me to appeal to that audience. I made contact with pro gamer Brett Leonard, who is more commonly known in the Halo community as “Naded“. Brett has been gaming professionally for over 7 years and has been a part of several historic Major League Gaming (MLG) teams. He and I spoke on the phone about Game Changers, his life as a professional gamer, and the possibility of working together on the film.
There are 2 scenes in Game Changers that take place at an MLG event. I wasn’t sure if I could get actual pro’s to make cameos in these scenes, but Brett said he’d be interested in making a cameo in the film. Having pro’s in the film isn’t a necessity, but I want to go that extra mile for fans of MLG and pro gaming. I know that I would appreciate it if I saw it, so I’m really excited to have Brett involved.
For me, it’s also very important to keep the vernacular of the film true. The problem is, I don’t know all the lingo. If a character say “One shot our dick rock” or “Sniping our pee shooter from ring two”, I need to make sure it makes sense to gamers. So Brett has agreed to be my liaison into the world of pro gaming, making sure that my dialogue is relevant and true.