Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Went to The Alliance gig tonight ...

Wall-to-wall people there (in the ballpark of 125, by my count) to meet members of "The Alliance", get questions answered, network, etc.

Or maybe they were just trying to be seen by the powers that be in our little film town.

I got to chat with some folks I hadn't seen for a while, which was really nice -- It's all about the relationships, folks.

And, hey, it was at Momo's Club on a Tuesday night -- kind of like meetings used to be. And there was an (I think unadvertised) set by Patrice Pike. She's still so freakin' amazing.

The only real downside was a ridiculously insular, insensitive, inaccurate, and -- unfortunately -- public trivialization of the current hurricane devastation of of Louisiana.

Also ran into a jerk actor I hadn't seen for a long time. Still a jerk ...

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Bunny and Clydo is going to rock the festival circuit!

I've mentioned this film before, and even went so far to say even if I wasn't in the film, you should still see it.

Anyway, the new site is up, and it'll be showing at the Los Angeles Int'l Short Film Festival in September (as the closing finale for the "Having A Bad Day" category). Having the film show at this festival is a big deal, and more power to Rocky Jo, Damon Chang, and Arnie Reyes, and other folks that put what I suspect are amazing efforts behind this flick.

It'll also be showing at the following festivals (with some times TBA):

Niftage ...

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Dinner with company President/CEO tonight.

Interesting how I get blessed with opportunities people way more senior than me may never see.

More importantly, he was as fired up as me about doing the "right thing", and seems genuinely passionate about it.

And, unlike me, he can do something about it.

I just got back from a commercial audition for the Children's Hospital of Austin.

This looks like it will be a nice and sweet little piece, and it's a nice bonus that it's for something I can gladly support.

The set-up is a mom, dad, and nurse watching a little girl ride up to them on a tricycle. The 5-year-old little girl I auditioned with, Caiti, did a fantastic job, and this was my first time to work with fellow Collier Talent Katherine Willis. I really enjoy working with professionals who know their stuff. Plus, she's got one of the best actor's websites I've seen in a while.

Oh, and the commercial is being directed by Jimmy Lindsey, camera operator for Robert Rodriguez forever, and DP on the "Untitled Supernatural Thriller (aka Revolver)".

Good for Jimmy branching out into directing, and I really appreciated the chance to audition for him. Nice, professional guy, and amazingly good with the kids.

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

"If none of us had limitations ... What would God do with his time?" (Professor X/Whedon).

Ah, Joss Whedon, to live in a world of the X-Men Legends video game, you writing Astonishing X-Men comic book, the Firefly TV show back on the air, and the Serenity film out next month ...

Thanks for giving fanboys the deep stuff.

-- Adam

Monday, August 15, 2005

Texas critters, part 2

This is the 5th little guy like this I've caught and tossed out of my house in the last week. This one was a scrapper, and acted like he if was going to take me down. (No geckos were harmed in the making me this post.)

Saturday, August 13, 2005

More on the Austin Film Festival competition trailer I've chatted about here, here, here, here, and, uh, the aftermath here.

this is an audio post - click to play
I met with a couple of folks, Rocky and Sunee Conly, from Campus Crusade for Christ International last night.

Rocky's working with the CCCi national media team, so we wanted to connect, see what each other was up to, and explore possible opportunities for working together.

Watching the clips, I'd say Rocky's been a part of some nice short films, and some big-gun industry folks have been participating. The stuff is pretty amazing, and the Conlys themselves (part of a bigger team), were really fun to hang around and chat with.

Check out their blog. Look through the media team's portfolio and download their recent International short film. I'm impressed that these are religious films that not only don't suck, but our, really, really good.

And, like me, Rocky is a not-so-closet video gamer.

Both Rocky and Sunee are using their considerable gifts for religious ministry, which means they're totally dependent on financial commitments from other people (there's a concrete example of "faith"). If you feel like you can help them out, be sure to contact them through their blog.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

I'm getting to hate Halo 2 and Xbox Live

I'm getting to hate Halo 2 and Xbox Live.

Last night started out well. Me and 1.5 acting friends got together and fired up the projector and watched new high-rez and high-def game trailers for WarDevil (from Digi-Guys Studio), Project Offset (Offset; Somebody fund this game!), Huxley (Webzen; freakin' awesome looking MMOFPS with style and meat), Painkiller (People Can Fly, DreamCatcher Interactive), Ninety-Nine Nights (2015), Final Fantasy XI (Square Enix), Dead Rising (Capcom), Indigo Prophecy/Fahrenheit (Quantic Dream, Atari), Gears of War (Epic Games, Microsoft Game Studios), and King Kong (Ubisoft Entertainment).

Then the three of us played co-op through a level of X-Men Legends.

We watched an episode of Thundercats, freakin' finally released on DVD (and, though I hassle my friend for running out to buy it instantly, I did get goosebumps while watching the opening episode).

Then came what should have been the crowning event for the evening. Mutliplayer Halo 2 on Xbox Live.

Since I had guests, the only options for play are "Rumble Pit" and "Team Training" -- unranked play for people without dedicated Xbox Live accounts -- so we started with some team work, with me hosting the game.

When we started out, and after my perfunctory, "Whassup, fellas?", Dude #1 asks, "Hey, Hitachi" (which is my Live Gamer Tag handle) "What size TV are you guys playing on?"

(Stupid question, because someone asking that probably wants to brag.)

Me: (Answering honestly) 107 inches.

Dude #1: **Expletive** liar!

Me: No, seriously. It's a projector,
and the screen's 107" diagonal.

We get to playing, and then someone else chimes in with a question for Dude #1:

Dude #2: Why do you ask? What size are you playing on?

Dude #1 (Sheepishly) 52-inch plasma.

Me: (Sincerely) Man, that's awesome! Those things are so nice -- great picture, and that's a really huge plasma!

Then they ejected me from the game (which booted all of us). Just like that. For screen-size envy.

And things just went downhill from there.

We'd play games, and people would drop off because they were losing (it's Rumble Pit and Team Training your twits! That means the games don't affect your ranking!).

We'd play games, and as part of the random set up, one of my friends would be paired with me, and the other ended up on the other team. He wasn't doing well, so they'd boot him (which booted all of us).

We'd play Rumble Pit, where it's a free-for-all, and even though my two friends and I would treat that honestly and beat on each other and other players, other yahoos with one or two guests were teaming up on people to get better scores (yes, that's called cheating).

But, the worst part is the brainless chatter. The profanity. The inanity.

There are these moments at the start of each game where the players are hanging out as the game sets up, and those of us with headset can chat. I use the time to try to meet people, find out where they're playing from, etc.

But more often than not, my intros of "Whassup, fellas?" and "How's everyone doing tonight?" were answered with no response, mockery, "That's a stupid handle", and even "F*** you." Seriously.

One such interaction:

I****edYourMom: I****edYourMom.

Dude #3: Huh?

I****edYourMom: I****edYourMom.

Dude #3: What?

I****edYourMom: I****edYourMom. Then I pooped in her mouth.

So I ended the game before it started. I probably did that for 4 or 5 games, because of crass, foul-mouthed louses.

And that's on top of the fact that after downloading the required Xbox Live patch and free maps, I get constant "you failed to load the map" errors.

Let's be perfectly clear: I didn't freakin' fail to do anything -- the Xbox did. Halo 2 did. Xbox Live did. I didn't. And no amount of deleting everything else on my Xbox to reinstall (which makes me oh-so-happy) fixes the problem.

So after my friends left (after finally a couple of fun competitive matches in a row), I watched a couple of the high-def, Xbox 360 trailers again to cleanse my palette.

Trailers for the offline games.

I'm hoping Xbox 360 and the relaunch of Xbox Live, creating the "Casual Gamers Zone", fixes a lot of this gargage. It's not fun right now.

Spiders, slugs, and geckos - oh my!

So, I've noticed an increasing number of creepy crawlies lately. This particular big guy is outside my work, and has an almost four-inch span.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I love the rain.

Central Texas thunderstorms are awesome, but usually only last a few minutes (15 on the outside). This one, however, has been cranking away for 45 minutes.

I'm sitting in a third-floor office in northwest Austin, watching the deluge. Looking out over the trees towards downtown Austin, it almost looks like a tropical rainforest -- steamy, swollen raindrops, tons of lightning, and booming thunder. I can barely see buildings across the parking lot, the rain is so heavy.

Impressive. Most impressive.

Monday, August 08, 2005

I am tech geek

I am tech geek. I have more than a terabyte of storage.

I've got a Windows Media Center PC I use for everything from audio and video editing to recording massive amounts of TV.

The thing "only" came with a 160GB hard drive, but since I record tons of animation stuff and every Inside the Actors Studio, I added an internal 300GB hard drive, and since this computer is crucial for my Biz stuff, I jumped on an unreal deal for a 300GB external drive, where all of my working files live, in case the computer should ever go kaput.

Then, this weekend, it sounded like the original 160 Gig hard drive was failing. So, even thought I had the flu and a bad sinus infection (not a recommended combination, rest assured), I rushed out and got a steal on a 400GB replacement internal drive, and spent the entire freaking weekend rebuilding my computer (in between bouts of nausea, dizziness, and uh, Xbox sessions). I bought a cheapy USB enclosure for the old hard drive, so I could (in theory) "easily" recover all of my Email, calendar, contacts, etc. (turned out that was a little more work in practice, but it's all done now).

So, sitting back amidst the techno carnage during a bout of cold sweats (and somewhere during the X-Men Legends "Weapon X" flashback level), I still felt good at having rescued my computer -- until I heard the same, bad, high-pitched whine and ball-bearing rattle that caused me to replace the hard drive in the first place.

Turns out the power unit -- not the hard drive -- was going bad. For those in the know, yes, this is a cheaper, easier, and less serious replacement on a computer.

But, since I'm a "The-glass-is--full-and-how-do-I-fill-up-the-other-half?" kind of guy, I still have the following:
400GB internal hard drive (new)
+ 300GB internal hard drive (existing)
+ 300GB external hard drive (existing)
+ 160GB external hard drive (old internal)
= 1.16 terabytes of storage

I feel like I've reached a new level of my technology ownership. Not bad for a guy who's first computer (after the beloved Atari 2600 game console) was an Atari 520ST (with 520K of physical memory); and I felt like I'd really arrived when I upgraded to the Atari Mega II ST.

(Incidently, my two favorite games on the Atari were Kings Quest III and Dungeon Master. I'm still looking for a game that hooks me as much and for as long as Dungeon Master did.)

Friday, August 05, 2005

"Never work with kids or animals." So says the Biz adage.

I'm of the mindset of Danny Boyle, who said the adage simply isn't true.

Yesterday was BigHugeCorp's "Bring Your Child to Work Day" (which, in true big business fashion, was summarily reduced to the unpronounceable acronym "BYCTWD").

Part of the festivities included filming a commercial -- really a PR piece, "focusing on the Company's most valuable assets: Its people!"

Once again, as they were looking around for someone to pull this off, they again went down the rabbit hole of, "Who do we know that does films and commercials? Adam!"

So we wrangled together two groups of 24 kids, shot two commercials in an hour a piece, edited each for a rough-cut (an hour and 35 minutes, respectively, for editing commercials #1 and #2), and we were able to show the kids a semblence of a finished commercial on the day of the shoot. Very cool.

This was by no means a solo act. I had some talented people working with me the couple of weeks leading up to yesterday. One is a theater actress. Another has theater, modeling, and (a ha!) kids' theater camp experience (why wasn't he on the hook for this thing?). An editor-want-to-be who knew the tools and could grasp the creative direction. Our DP is an accomplished film maker in his own right. An adept photographer who made a good grip/gaffer. An intern we could tell to shut up and do whatever we asked (never understimate the value of that). And other folks who gave their time and energy to make cue cards and help out in other ways.

So it turned out well. It's footage of kids being authentic, talking about what their parents do to make BigHugeCorp successful, and it turned out well. Because they're minors and the thing isn't intended for broadcast, I won't post any clips here, so you'll have to take my word for it.

Now, to spend the weekend cranking the final cut for OneWhoHasPower in BigHugeCorp to approve.

At least the kids were fun ...

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

VO audition until 2 a.m. last night

Granted, it was an MP3 audition, and it was so late because the Reel Women monthly mix went so late. And my PC mic conked out, so I was reduced to recording my sessions into my digital voice mail, Emailing them to myself, running them through a filter to reduce the phone tinniness (without changing the audio quality), then saving them as an MP3. Plus I have a head cold, so I had to do a bunch of takes to Email to my rocking (and understanding and collaborative) agent to pick the best and forward on.

Anything for a gig.

So, what was the gig that had me working so hard? Can't say :-) . But I can tease: It'd be narration for a feature\documentary for an activity that could be labeled "redneck" or "white trash", but in reality involves some talented, athletic, entertaining, and fun-loving folks, and it's with a professional company with whom I've wanted to work for some time. I may have said too much....

Monday, August 01, 2005

I am humbled and amazed by people ...

this is an audio post - click to play

St. Edwards University audition

Just leaving an audition for St. Edwards University. I got to act like a re-entering college student listening to a lecture. Worked well, because I wouldn't mind being a student again, and I'm usually being lectured by someone. By the way, I don't recommend trying to take a picture me the St. Ed's exit sign while driving. Or text blogging while driving. Now I'm off to the Reel Women monthly mixer.