Week 32: Stories From Home 2
(watch in HD if you have the bandwidth)
[BIG thanks to Petur Magnussen and Patrick Foster for helping be out with this one. Pete shot it beautifully, and Pat was all around super helpful and kept morale up. He also had a great cameo, but unfortunately I cut that whole scene out. The same thing happened to me on a Robert DeNiro movie once. Hopefully Patrick isn't as crushed as I was.]
Oh baby, the Great California Shoot-a-thon is off and running. I landed on Tuesday, shot on Wednesday, edited Thursday, and released Thursday night. Friday morning I drive down to Death Valley, and if I don’t end up in the belly of vultures, I should have a funny/weird video for you next week… and a tan, maybe.
From Death Valley I’m heading to L.A. to continue the Shoot-a-thon. The plan is to shoot two or three episodes a week (though, the 26th thru 2nd is allotted for vacation… meaning I’m only going to shoot one). I stocked up on non-perishable food at Trader Joe’s today. Though I have a handful of friends in L.A. I still have a feeling that I’m going to be doing a fair amount of living out of my car… which I’m kind of looking forward to. Maybe I’m having a fantasy about being a Digital Age Kerouac. Maybe I’m just sleepy.
Anyway, let’s talk about this episode a little.
I’ve started to notice a recurring theme in my work. It’s the whole returning home and it being different thing. I did it first in this one:
and then, more recently, in this one (which I named this episode after, because it was really a second exploration of the same theme):
Not sure where that comes from, exactly, but it’s interesting to observe. The original concept I had for this episode (many months ago) was that I would be going around my old home town telling stories about different places, and they’d get weirder and weirder as it went on. It was going to be a comedy, originally, but I’m happy with it, as it is. Those who like plot driven episodes be disappointed. There’s not much linear motion in this one. It’s more of a character study. The dialogue was entirely improvised.
It was shot in Albany, CA, and yes, that really is where I grew up. The house really was the house I grew up in (it was sold a while ago), I really did poison that poor tree by pouring an “anti-gravity potion” on it (though I’d never seen a hawk in it before. That blew my mind. If you pause it you can actually see that it has a gopher or something in its talons), and I really did go to Albany High. Everything else was fiction. “The Bulb” is a real place, too. It used to have tons and tons of “hobo art” there, and there was a whole community living there. The city kicked everyone off, years ago, because they said they were going to develop that land. Which was, of course, bullshit. They just didn’t want homeless people there. There is still a lot of art there, and some of the strange and amazing shelters are still standing. I highly recommend checking it out if you’re ever down there.
Alright, that’s it. I’m going to get some shut-eye because tomorrow I hit the road. Wish me luck, and I’ll see ya soon.
Brent 3.12.10 2.18am