Sunday, February 28, 2010

New website update! Clickie to your right. Mostly just some updates and things to the film descriptions.

I am going to be returning something to my website which hasn't been seen since the quaint days of old school "Kojiro Abe": an online art gallery. I got spooked years ago when everybody was all like "your art sucks and how dare you even post such crap" but wish I hadn't listened and had kept up with it more.

Doing all that Alison visualization really got me going again and I've been doodling like crazy lately and am finding the practice extremely therapeutic as it's a great way for me to melt off the stress of everyday existence so they'll be a lot of things to throw in there.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

For whoever lives in Plymouth, MA and reads this blog: An Evening With J.L. Carrozza will be airing in its entirety on PACTV (Channel 13) starting this Friday, February 26th at 10 pm.

There will also be special re-airings of Little Red Riding Hood and Dream House (the 2009 cuts of course) with the Evening interview segments about those two films adjacent to them which may put some things in perspective me thinks.

Little Red Riding Hood will air first on Tuesday March 1st at 10:30 pm and Dream House Wednesday March 2nd at 10 pm.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The narration for Conversations with T.F. Mou has been recorded. Now I'm pretty much just cutting the final version together.

Deirdre Yee (Jessica's voice actress for the new Dream House) ended up doing the narration track. I wanted to work with Charli again, but Deirdre did a great job and made a very smooth and listenable track, I think.

Probably not gonna hear too much from me except on a more sporadic note (when I'm bored) as I edit T.F. Mou and budget Alison. See you in June.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Alison in Wonderland Concept Sketches
Here are those sketches for Alison in Wonderland I first showed off in Evening with J.L. Carrozza five. I did them in January.
How I see Alison as a character. Young, cute, naive and full of youthful fantasy but also brighter than most and inquisitive enough to solve her problems instead of being defeated by them. I see a lovely but also Earthly looking brunette or strawberry blonde playing her.Derek, Alison's obnoxiously sociopathic rocker (soon to be ex-)boyfriend. He's skinny and suave so he gets the ladies even if he's dumb as ass and most people who aren't taken in by his charms want to break his jaw with their knuckles. Likes to go to abandoned buildings, blast Iron Maiden and urinate on things.
The character of Molly, Alison's hippie activist girlfriend who would break Derek's jaw with her fists if she was male. She eats organic vegetarian food, owns a betta fish, knows her Tarot deck like a Trekkie knows the script of Wrath of Khan and is a member of a left wing activism group that often gets in trouble for hurling tomatoes at Republicans. She was a minor character in the old script who just kind of appears out of nowhere to give Alice some comfort, now her role in the non-Wonderland stuff is fairly large.The White Rabbit, the only character that has stayed more or less unchanged from the old heals-of-Dream House Alice in Wonderland film to this version. She's a girl in a Playboy Bunny costume like in the anime Miyuki-chan in Wonderland, but this time I want a very attractive blond girl to play her to complete the Playboy look, so she's as much a jab at sexuality in America as a homage to a Japanese cartoon.The Caterpillar, who is a total stoner who doesn't do anything except sit in his mushroom patch and smoke loads of a ganja-like substance. For his look, I basically envisioned him as a larval Mothra if she decided to give up fighting Godzilla and spinning her cocoon and smoke loads of pot. I'm strongly considering going further with the Toho references in that scene and surrounding him with an enormous, misty patch of Matango-like mushrooms.
The Cheshire Cat, who I basically see as being David Bowie in feline form. I wish I could use a real cat and CG a pair of lips on him, but that's too tough and real animals are a nightmare to wrangle so instead I'm going for a double exposed puppet. He's a pretentious, crazy but ultimately well meaning spectral feline sprite. I may ask *somebody special* to do his voice that isn't as famous as David Bowie. I don't know why Tim Burton didn't have Bowie voice the Cat in his version.
The Mad Hatter, who as I've said will be a real standout of the film. I've talked about him enough, but as said he's part Heath Ledger's Joker, one part Willy Wonka, one part Dieter Hellstrom, the Gestapo officer who rains on everybody's bar room parade in Inglourious Basterds. He's one scary son of a bitch and his house will include everything from live rats and calfskin rugs to children's film posters and sex toys of all shapes and sizes.
The March Hare, the Hatter's very creepy yet tragically pitiful gay sex slave. Whether his bunny head is his true face or a mere mask that he cannot take off thanks to the Hatter's years of torture and psychological abuse is something you'll never know.The Red Queen, Wonderland's voluptuous, despotic lady monarch. I based her dress off a mix of medieval, baroque and classical German and French fashions. In most adaptations and envisionings of Alice in Wonderland, the Queen is depicted as being quite ugly and around middle aged. I see her as being quite seductively beautiful, fairly young (late 20s-to early 30s) and full figured with flesh spilling out of her corset. She is like Elizabeth Bathory or Vlad the Impaler mixed with George W. Bush, she is sadistic, a spoiled child of privilege and utterly callous and apathetic: powdering her face, applying red lipstick and sucking on heart-shaped lolly-pops as she has her dissidents decapitated. The Two of Hearts, one of the Queen's card guard warriors. No longer are they just people in silly card costumes. I've gone for an Earthier look ala the real life Knights Templar, they're Knight-like servants, henchmen, warriors and bodyguards that serve their Queen with a unyielding loyalty. The Ace of Hearts, the leader and commander of the Card Guards.
The Castle of Hearts, home of the Red Queen, with the very Vlad the Impaler-like piked heads outside. As opposed to the samurai film thing I was going to do last time around, here's it's all based in gothic Medieval European stylings, the scenes are going to be like a Lord of the Rings film done on a shoestring with copious gore, like if Peter Jackson had done his trilogy in the 80s instead of the double-oughts. Other influences will include John Boorman's wonderful Excalibur and Kinji Fukasaku's Makai Tensho and Legend of the Eight Samurai (Satomi Hakkenden), the latter two owing more to the Western fantasy epics being made at the same time than to their Japanese kin. The castle will be a miniature that I'm gonna hire someone to build and do loads of blue screen work with, probably gonna use Barbie and Ken doll heads as the piked trophies.Sid, the Queen's bloodthirsty, tattooed decapitator who likes to feel his axe break the spines of his victims like celery stalks and drink goblets of Celtic malt beverages. His design is not based off anybody I know.

Well, with these videos done and work resuming on Conversations with T.F. Mou you'll probably not hear that much from me for a little while. I look forward to bringing more soon though.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Making a Teaser Poster
The faceless down-raters have descended upon my final video for reasons unknown (probably just a juvenile desire for revenge over a few bruised egos). Perhaps, however, my own ego is to this day still a little bruised itself over some past grievances which lead me to reveal more than I should over some personal matters which kind of caused this pickle, but either way, I am pleased to fully unveil the Alison in Wonderland teaser poster as well as document its creation.
I personally am pleased with its look. My uncle John was kind enough to provide the location, camera and model for me (uncredited). I think it nicely draws you into the surreal and grotesque fantasy world I'm envisioning. Like the pills that Alice takes to make her larger and small, heh. The tagline is based on a lyric from a song called Reality by Richard Sanderson. That song was used the French La Buom movies. They're basically the Eurotrash equivalent to the John Hughes films of the same time, in fact, not only does is La Buom a lot like Sixteen Candles, actress Sophie Marceau is even a dead ringer for Molly Ringwald. John Hughes probably saw it and conceptually pilfered it thusly. I would like to actually use Reality in Alison if the rights to it don't cost one appendage and the soul of your firstborn.

The Hatter is a character, which, as I said in the video I have envisioned like a mix between Heath Ledger's Joker, Willy Wonka and a few nameless people I actually know. He's a deranged low level psychopath who lives in a shack in a forest like The Wolf, but he's more into rape and torture than cannibalism and pedophilia. Like a true psychopath, he will fuck anything that moves if there's power in it, male or female, young and old alike. He has a back story connecting him romantically with the Red Queen that I probably won't unveil until its all done, but his ass is banished for a reason.

Here are some of the shoot's items as we shot them. Hatter's very feral, grungy and dirty which reflects his hermetic bottom dwelling lifestyle nicely and like the Wolf he's a serial rapist/killer whose been through loads of victims. I went to a great effort to create this look, from rubbing food on most of the items, rubbing the purple jacket (which I originally bought for a Joker costume last Halloween but love so much I'm gonna use it in the film) in lint and dust and staining the yellow tablecloth with red food coloring and dragging for a half mile down Mass Ave in Cambridge. I probably had a police report filed about me, but normal people just don't get *it* and as long as they don't throw your butt in jail, who cares? I was planning on using a checkerboard tablecloth for the actual film, but yellow looks so nice and so "Hattery" that I think I might go with yellow after all.
Here's an outtake that I like almost as much, I didn't chose it because it just doesn't "jump" out as much as the other one, but it nicely shows off the bloodstained gloves.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

As we gawk at the most bizarre Oscar picks in history, a lineup featuring a group of films about such varied subjects as Nazi scalping Jew mercenaries, alien apartheid, pregnant ghetto ladies and Wampanoag Smurf people, I point a laser diverting your eyes from the Gomorrah of Hollywood and to a place where good cinema is being cultured with an amount of money of umpteen minimality and the only resource being a powerful, actively creative mind. That's right, the final Evening with J.L. Carrozza is here at long last.

Sorry about the long wait. I just wanted to make it good you impatient scamps you. Even if you are late to this party and haven't seen the other ones, this is the one to see. It sets you up nicely on what to expect from myself in the coming year. There's some info, which is already pretty commonly assessable, on how I recut and remastered Little Red Riding Hood and Dream House, but the fun really begins with the talk about Conversations with T.F. Mou. There's a lot of footage from what I've got so far and a bit of a sneak preview of what the film will be like in terms of the ground covered in its simultaneous exploration of cinema, war and man's aggressions and depravities.

And of course, my adventures in Myrtle Beach are detailed and the plans for Alison in Wonderland are laid out on the table. And the teaser poster for Alison is unveiled.

These were generally quite fun to make and I'm pleased at most of the response, though I'm a little ticked that the third and fourth got downrated a little bit. I'm not sure if it was Dave Luce and his band of idiots, because I criticized Ryan a little bit (seems each video was downrated proportionately to the amount of Ryan Murphy bashing present) or just because I am not entirely kind to the whole YouTube phenomena. Perhaps I shouldn't post a video criticizing YouTube on YouTube and expect not to get burned a little from it.

On the record, I would happily go drinking with Ryan any day of the week, I just wouldn't work with him again because our ways of doing things are too diametrically opposed and I think he feels the same way. There's nothing wrong with making funny online videos to light up people's days that people can spread around at school and work and chuckle at like the stuff Neil and Ryan do, but it's not my specialty and the only things I hate about YouTube are the laziness its spawned, the sheep-like attitude of a lot of its users and the hate its discussions seem to breed. Those are not the inherent thing or even the online video movement, they're just nasty side effects, I think.

I'm gonna do a vigorous house cleaning, prepare to get back to work for T.F. Mou and do a website update soon enough. They'll be a standalone post about the Alison poster pretty soon.