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November 30, 2007

My Pitch

so... tell me what you think. I have 2 minutes. It's supposed to pique your interest enough to make you want to ask questions. Does it do this?

Remember back for a moment, back to elementary school. Think back to the kid who wasn’t cool. Maybe it was you. Maybe it was the kid you ignored. But he was there. He was the one that peed his pants during music class, cried during recess, couldn’t catch the football during the big game.

Now imagine he goes home, and things don’t get any better.

A Well-Adjusted Boy is a drama about intellectually precocious 12 year old Laurent Winters, the son and primary test subject of a prominent child rearing expert, his mother Dr Jean Winters.

On one hand, he exists in a structured, emotionally barren world at home (His mother will only hug him for 5 seconds at the most, it’s timed on an egg timer, and only as a reward for good behavior.) And on the other hand, he barely survives in this chaotic lord of the flies 6th grade existence at school (Where he is, by his own admission, “not high on the social hierarchy.”)

This delicate balance is overwhelmed when he’s traumatically shamed at school, and finds no comfort from his mother at home, at this time when he really needs it. Laurent loses his carefully groomed, well-behaved disposition and makes a decision he knows his mother wouldn’t approve of. .. Because he needs to change.

With the help of his new – and only – friend, a free-spirited 12 year old girl named Talayah, he sets out on a quest to find the Right Reverend Cornelius, the famous Texas Televangelist... the only one who can turn his cold, distant mother into

the loving parent he’s always needed. Of course, as with any journey, they find much more.

Posted by jason on 07:04 PM | Comments (7)

November 28, 2007

Another Masterpiece from my daughter

Posted by jason on 02:07 PM | Comments (2)

Pitching next week

Our screenwriting instructor Paul Castro is arranging a "pitch session" where we have 2-3 minutes to pitch our script to "a mysterious guest." I have no idea who it could be, but he does have connections. I have to put my pitch together in the next couple of days, then know it well enough that I can deliver it while the rest of the class throws balled up pieces of paper at me...

Fun times.

Posted by elanyarts on 03:25 AM | Comments (4)

Enchanted

Go and see this movie. It's really very clever, well made, funny, and sweet. Perfectly cast... loved it. Hopefully it'll usher in more hand drawn animation. I love the Pixar stuff, but there is something about a great big 2D animated film that seems more epic and timeless. I still can't believe Disney discontinued the art form...

Posted by jason on 03:16 AM | Comments (4)

November 21, 2007

Short Update

Sorry it's been quiet for so long, things have gotten very busy. Scripts, animated short, and other work are taking up a lot of time.

Collin and Linds are coming into town for a week tomorrow. Rock on, it should be fun.

Posted by jason on 04:20 AM | Comments (1)

November 15, 2007

kitties by lyric

look what I found on my computer. my 8 year old daughter put it together just for fun. I had no idea she could even use keynote, the presentation program from Apple.

Posted by jason on 11:27 PM | Comments (8)

November 11, 2007

Our Shows will be Fine without Writers

This is pretty funny (bad language warning).

Posted by jason on 07:49 PM | Comments (10)

November 09, 2007

The Strike Rally at Fox Plaza

What a day. It was very cool. Just such a huge gathering of people, tons of support from cars driving by. I stood next to Larry David (Said, "Hi Larry.). I saw Julie Louis Dreyfus, President David Palmer from 24, Jessie Jackson talked to us. Tom Arnold was there. Alec Baldwin was there. Zach sang with Tom Morella! Toby and Kelly from the Office were there (not their real names, but that how fans of the show will know them).

We walked and talked to actress Cobie Smulders for about 30 minutes and she couldn't have been nicer. She introduced us to one of her co-stars, Josh Radnor. I guess I should watch an episode of that show!

Andrew Zuckerman from 90210 gave me a t-shirt! One thing that was really cool... even though I admit I was kind of starstruck, all of these people were real normal people, and there mostly for the writers that are struggling to make it... they themselves are basically set. It was a very nice, peaceful day of camaraderie.

Being a big fan of Larry David, I have to share a story.... because he was just about exactly like he is in the show. One of his friends wanted to get him to talk to Jessie Jackson. "He's a fan, Larry, he'd like to meet you." But Larry was embarrassed to just walk up to him. "Oh no, why? I don't want to just say, hi I'm Larry David. Why would he want that?" And eventually he stuck to his guns and faded back into the crowd, away from Jessie. It was hilarious seeing him.

Posted by jason on 11:18 PM | Comments (10)

November 08, 2007

Picketing tomorrow

I'm mostly posting this to make Ian, Collin, and Shane jealous... Tom Morello, of Rage Against the Machine, will be playing an acoustic mini-set at the picket line tomorrow outside Fox Plaza.

It's going to be a good time!

Tomorrow, join thousands of your fellow writers at Fox Plaza in a major show of solidarity. Do not go to any other picket location. This will be the only picketing to be held on Friday.

Parking in Century City is extremely limited. Carpool if you can. You can also park for three hours in the Westfield shopping center at no charge with a purchase.

Be on time! The police are blocking Avenue of the Stars for this rally, which will begin at 10 a.m. and end at 11 a.m., to be followed by picketing on Avenue of the Stars and at the main Pico Gate.

10 a.m. to 12 Noon – Friday, Nov. 9, 2007

Fox Plaza
2121 Avenue of the Stars, Century City
(between Olympic and Pico boulevards)

Speakers will include WGAW President Patric M. Verrone and Screen Actors Guild President Alan Rosenberg. Singer-activist Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine, AudioSlave, the Nightwatchman) will open the rally with an exclusive acoustic mini-set.

Posted by jason on 11:47 PM | Comments (0)

Pencil Test

Here is a very badly shot of the television while my pencil test of a girl walking and jumping was playing. The flicker on the screen was making large black arcs, but if you look through and around that, you'll see the gist of the animation I did today.

Posted by jason on 01:51 AM | Comments (5)

Update on the Radiohead experiment

Here's a rundown of how they did. The summary? 62% of people didn't pay a dime for the album. They got an average of $2.26 per album downloaded. Doesn't sound so great, except if they were to release the album through "traditional" artist label channels, they'd have only gotten a buck. So more than half of their fans can be greedy little jerks and they still can make double what they would have if they had released it through a company of greedy little jerks.

Posted by jason on 12:57 AM | Comments (2)

November 07, 2007

Power to the People

I'll be walking a picket line on Friday, outside of Fox Studios.

Of course, I'm working hard to become a professional writer, so even though I'm not yet a member of the Guild, I'm going to support those who are. For those of you who don't know, the main issues of this strike are DVDs, and other "New Media" -- which are online downloads, digital delivery, cell phones, etc. Little bit of background: back before anyone knew what a cash cow DVDs would be, the studios said to the writers: "We don't really know how much money these can really make, so we can't really promise you anything concrete in terms of money from DVD sales. How about we just see how the sales go, and then re-negotiate something fair? For now, you can have 3 cents (yes, 3 pennies) per DVD sold."

That was... oh... almost 20 years ago. Guess how much the writers... the people who make up the lines, the scenarios, the stories, the characters make now every time you buy a TV or film DVD? 3 or 4 cents.

So this is why they (we) are striking. Because now that digital, online distribution is the wave of the future, what are the studios saying? Exactly what they said about DVDs. And the writers are saying, no, we deserve more. You never re-negotiated after you found out just how much money you could make.

I appreciate that the writers now are unified and striking now, because their sacrifice will benefit me once i start selling and working. So I'll be there with them, Mr. Labor Union.

Support your Writer's Union.

For more information about the strike, here are some great links:
John August's website
Up to minute coverage – the best around.

Posted by jason on 07:20 PM | Comments (5)

November 02, 2007

Animating

I'm really learning alot about animation, and for the first time the other day, I felt... it... the illusion of life, that I created with pencil and paper. The key to getting things right, is actually not to do too much. I was drawing too many pictures, trying to get too much done in the amount of time. But the other day i actually learned how to work the "Lunchbox" which is this tool that captures each frame and plays them back, and perfected what I was drawing. The cute little main character of my film, blinking, then having her smile fall into a frown. And it was so strange, when I saw her there, blinking, and it worked like it was supposed too... It was not unlike the feeling I got when I first saw one of my kids look at me in smile. I know that sounds weird, and of course it wasn't to the same degree, but it was the same kind of magical "oh my goodness this is otherworldly in its amazingness" feeling.

I really really like it.

And the writing is going well too. I think just because I'm in a program with so many talented people, and I'm keeping up with them, it's just making me better. It's like, I'm being nerdy and playing this game Mario Strikers charged for the Wii lately, online. Where people are fantastically, ridiculously good. I used to get blown out 10-1, never even be in games. But now I win more than I lose, and play pretty even with people who are really good. Just because I hung around, I'm better. I feel like its the same thing here.

Posted by jason on 04:19 AM | Comments (5)