Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Bad Ass

My mom used the phrase "bad ass" today over email. I slapped my forehead and grinned from ear to ear. I love my mom ... more than life itself. As a child, she impressed upon me that I could do anything, become anyone. She stood beside me and held my hand during rough times. Both as a child and as a 30-year old woman. She sat on the phone with me when I cried hard and straight for about two hours one afternoon. One of the worst days of my life. She was ready to hop on a plane, no questions asked. She's let me make my own mistakes and never once chided in with "I told you so". She gave me gentle nudges when she could recognize my talents as a kid and my shyness to do anything with them. Most recently, she tried to contact Mel Gibson on my behalf. To tell him I was making movies in Austin and he should see them. She's been my cheerleader through rain, sleet and snow. She's been a source of inspiration and undying love. I inherited her confidence to take on the world. Especially when people would stand in front of me and say, "no". Her quirky ways have often times found their way into my very being. I love it though. I look at old photos of her in her late 20s and can finally see myself in her eyes. I told her when I was so very little that I wanted to grow up to be just like her. She has a heart the size of the ocean.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

journals, diaries and omas

I started writing in 5th grade. While visiting my Oma in Texas one summer, she gave me a diary covered in Chinese men sitting in fishing boats. She made sure to pick one with a tiny lock and key to protect my words from curious eyes. It wasn't my birthday or a gift giving holiday, she just somehow knew. I filled it almost daily with crushes, rants about my parents, stupid things my brother's annoying friends would do and my eventual obsession with River Phoenix. That little diary took me to a place that no one would ever know about.

In high school, I graduated on to black and white Mead Composition Books. Those were and always will be my journal of choice. I'd write almost nightly about innocent romances, my fears of moving away from home, my dreams of being on Broadway, adventures in canoes on the Intracoastal Waterway, feeling stupid, skipping school to play on the beach and my crushes on John Parker, Tilley and Garrett. When I'd have nothing or little to say, I'd scribble meticulous drawings of trees and flowers onto the pages.

In college, I found new uses for my Composition Book. I spent a semester befriending pot. My thoughts spilled out in long nonsensical ramblings, mostly indistinguishable words and sentences. I wrote about spaceships taking flight from my cigarette butts and rollercoasters riding over the edges of my skin. I'd write in a complete panic to get every fleeting thought and image onto paper. My entries would go on for pages and pages. Despite the romanticism and magical days I spent with my friends running around our backyard in afternoon rainshowers and lazily lounging on our backporch sipping colas, I failed a class. I failed my first college class on The Theories and Dynamics of Racism and Oppression and I decided that drugs were no longer my daily friend. After that, my journal became legible again.

I defaulted into Creative Writing Classes in college because my best
friends Karen and Ama were majoring in Creative Writing. Ama, was and still is, in love with words and literature, moreso than anyone I've ever met. I'd read her poetry and my heart would sink. Never in a million years would I be able to write like she could. I'd never written a real short story or even a poem, really. I went through the motions in short fiction and poetry classes. When I arrived at my dramatic workshop class my senior year was when I truly found something I would embrace. We were assigned a one-act play. About anything. I came home and quickly scratched out a play about the time my mother found an enormous spider in our bathtub. It took all evening and several neighbors to help rid my mother of her worst fear. My class loved it. They laughed and laughed. I fell in love, not with the story, but with the dialogue, the characters and the relationships I'd created. But I digress. This is supposed to be about journaling. I think.

I pretty much stopped writing when I moved to Texas in 1997. My journal has a mere handful of entries about my first day in Austin, my one day break up with my then boyfriend, a few dreams and maybe an occassional upset. I found myself writing when I was depressed. I found comfort in those lined pages. I eventually moved from my composition book to Microsoft Word. I moved from entries about my life to stories about made up people.

Sadly, I haven't had a composition book in a long while. Ama decorated one for me a few years back, which I've filled with editing notes and scores from spades games. I was given a blog site when Stacy set up the Storie Productions account almost a year ago. My blog doesn't contain my darkest fears or my innermost thoughts. Just my daily ramblings. I'm glad I have it. I'm glad I have a space to fill. I need to start back with that composition book though. I need a space to free myself of those days and thoughts that I can't share on a website for everyone to read.

Monday, August 29, 2005


I'm sitting in Quacks, my home away from home. This is actually the third time today that I've been here. I'm doing laundry next door and sitting here going through the movie outline and where to cut and shave. I think Nevie and I cut it down another 5 - 10 minutes. We're doing what we can. It heads out the door to the IFP tomorrow or Wednesday morning, depending on how fast Stacy can burn the DVDs. I'm excited for Scott Macaulay to watch the rough cut. I've admired him from afar for some time now. He was on my wishlist of producers when I was shopping around the script so many years ago. I even talked to his assistant while standing in Central Park on one of my many trips to New York. That was as far as I got. I probably got lost in the shuffle.

Since I've been in a cutting and slashing mood, I picked up Brain Brawl on my way home from Houston Sunday afternoon. So far I've cut it down from 115 pages to about 107. I'm trying to get it down to about 100. It needs to be tighter. I'm happy to be back to it. It's already feeling better and more manageable.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

150 Minutes

Apparently the first pass at a rough cut ... 150 minutes long. We have an epic on our hands. I asked Nevie if we could have an intermission like Lawrence of Arabia or Doctor Zhivago. I'm not sure if she thought that was funny or not.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005


Heart on the headphones this afternoon. I could probably listen to Crazy On You over and over for hours, days. I've loved Heart ever since 9th grade. Ever since my Government/Economics teacher, Mr. Piscitelli gave me the nickname, Baracuda because I schooled the Defense Attorney in a mock trial. Mr. Piscitelli picked me to be the Prosecuting Attorney because I was the quiet, shy girl in the back of class who never raised her hand. I guess he figured the quiet types need a little shove every so often. He was right. I enlisted the help of my friend Garrett's dad who was a lawyer at the time. He gave me all kinds of lawyer tricks and ways to sucker punch the defense. I remember wearing some god awful navy blue suit that my mom dressed me in. I remember standing in the library in our makeshift courtroom pacing back and forth with question after question. I cleaned some clocks that day. I put this girl, Sara, away for life for dealing Jawbreakers to the rest of our class. I'm glad too because she was an arrogant little thing who thought she'd gotten away with it. So every time Heart's Baracuda comes on, I smile and revel in my little successes.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Gym

I walked into the gym this morning and noticed strange glances. The guy at the desk looked at me long and hard. A few women turned their heads as I walked past. It was kind of like, "What is going on?", like the Twilight Zone or something. Two women congratulated me on the film, while I was stretching when I noticed, Mark, my trainer, had put the article from the Statesman on the bulletin board, large as life. I wanted to take it down because the stares made me uncomfortable. At least it explained to everyone my absence for two months and the fact that I have a little more around my middle as a result of that absence.

Monday, August 22, 2005

More images ...

Harris Savides

Sufjan Stevens is singing in my headphones. Daniel told me today that Sufjan will let us use the song I wanted. I also got a few more ideas from Kurt for backups to the ones that might be too costly.

Pieces are coming together in wonderful ways. All over the place, really.

I sat with Lorie Sunday morning sifting through the many stills from the film. We decided on which would be the main ones for the press. There are some gorgeous images. We came up with about 12. We'll take them to the IFP and get opinions all around.

I need to sit down with Brain Brawl again. It needs some rewrites and I've got some ideas floating through my head. I also have a new feature that I've been thinking about a lot lately. It's been brewing since I did Walter Lehman and Roberta Wells. I have a few unconventional ways I'm thinking about approaching it.

I had the most wonderful time with Kurt, Karen and Ryan last night. Karen, Ryan and I went to see Last Days. I have a great appreciation for Gus Van Sant. I don't always like his films, but I LOVE how he puts them together. I figured Last Days was a shoe in for my love. It stars Michael Pitt, who I think is absolutely dreamy. But I didn't like it. I was completely detached and bored. I am, however, in love with Harris Savides, Van Sant's director of photography. That man has my heart. If I could work with him someday, I could die a happy girl. After the movie, Kurt met up with us for dinner. It was like old times. I've missed my friends. I've missed our misadventures and laughs. I've missed talking a lot about nothing and loving every minute of it.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The last batch

I'm watching the last batch of footage tonight. It's past my bedtime and I'm pouring through the very last scene that we shot. Scene 23. It might be my new favorite. I'm watching Glen Powell struggle through a monologue about a building in Tokyo that became famous in the late 80s because entire families were committing suicide by jumping off of it. It became a tourist attraction. Poor Glen could never get it quite right until about take 7. It was kind of cute. God, I miss those kids. I've been watching a whole lot of them on the Avid. But it's not the same.

Chris Garcia wrote a really sweet article about me the other day. In fact, I got recognized in Quack's this morning when I went in for my Bran muffin. There was a huge picture on the cover of the Life and Arts section Saturday. Me striking a model pose. I felt really silly, when Matt, the photographer kept telling me to jut my shoulder out further and further and look off wistfully into the distance. I'm such a friggin' dork.

I'm going to Houston this weekend to teach a class on making short films. Stacy's also screening RESCUE ME while we're there. It'll be a nice departure from Austin.

Our New York trip is right around the corner. I'm getting pretty excited about the Ethiopian restaurant. A bunch of my friends from Tallahassee will be there for CMJ. I'm hoping to have a little reunion at a bar somewhere.

Agh. I should go to sleep. I have to run in the morning.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Air to breathe.

I'm starting to feel the pressure of time. The pressure of deadlines. After this IFP thing, I want to slow down. We need to put a brake on things. Nevie's head is about to explode and I can feel her weary eyes. She's doing a fantastic job, but it's starting to take its toll. The film needs some air to breathe. Nevie needs to be able to find a good, solid, comfortable place to continue to work. So many of the problems that keep arising are good problems. But we have to start setting priorities. They're really hard choices to make. There are a few really wonderful doors that are being opened, it's just difficult to decide whether we step through them at this time or not.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Kick Ball Rumble

Ramsay Park. 11am. Saturday, September 3rd.

We have lots of left over beer from the wrap party. We'll share, because we're nice. But that's the only thing we'll be nice about. Cassidy Kids ... in my good friend Kurt's words, "You're about to get your clocks cleaned."

The Bridges Kids

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Zak, Mrs. Nelson and Craig

The missing DAT tapes ....

... have been found!!! We've been stressing over two missing DAT tapes for about two weeks now. It would've meant no sound for about 7 or 8 scenes. Which would've meant ... badness, stress, tearing out our hair, crying ... Colby retrieved them from Mike's apartment this morning! Go Colby!!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Pure Joy

I'm pretty psyched right now. One good thing after another has happened today. Too much to go into detail though.

I have to congratulate Nevie, David, Heather, Nancy, Kyle and so many others for TFPF grants. jumping off bridges got one too. :)

Rough Cuts

Nevie has half of the film in a rough cut. The sound needs a lot of work, but the picture's coming together nicely. I did a lot of long, one set up scenes, which probably has helped matters. We were up late going over all of the scenes, working and laying down potential music to feel the pacing. Nevie got a taste of my "yeah, yeah, yeahs" and my "good, good, goods". There's a scene that I absolutely love. It's after the funeral and Grove goes to console Zak in his bedroom. Savannah and Bryan both give really wonderful, subtle performances next to a stark, pale backdrop. I love it. Nevie's nervous about the IFP lab. She thinks they'll tell me I made the wrong decision to hire her. I think she's being completely retarded. I think she's doing a really fantastic job in such a painfully stressful situation. Deadlines suck. Especially ones that are completely ridiculous and absurd.

I'm having a lot of fun editing with Nevie. At first I ached to be at the editing bay myself. Having edited my first feature and a few shorts, I know how everything goes. I know how it's paced. But this being the second piece that she's done for me, we're really finding a groove. It's nice to find people/friends that you can work with that understand where you're coming from and get what you're going for. Plus, she's so much fun to be around. I love the hell out of that girl. She's one of the strongest, most centered people I know.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Sunday Morning

I didn't want the night to end. I wanted to sit on the curb with Colby and Tracy and Nathan and Adrienne and everyone for hours. I would have to. It was a night spent dancing with my girls, greeting new faces and hugging old friends. Being gracious and thankful. Being proud. God, so proud. Of every single cast and crew member. There's something very magical about the people we assembled this summer. They've become second family to me and to each other. I love watching them smiling and laughing and hugging on each other. It's funny how a film can do that. I LOVE how a film can do that.

I need to start back on my scripts. I just read a short story that Colby gave me last night and I'm inspired to get back to writing. I'm inspired to work with Katie soon. Not sure on what. We'll figure it out. I love that girl to death. I wish I was that cool and confident fourteen. I really need to start writing again. God, I need to get back to that. I'm really missing it now. A nice retreat from the world would probably do me good.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Game On

Saturday, September 3rd. The Bridges Kids versus the Cassidy Kids. There's gonna be some major trash talkin'. Time and Place TBD. Rules as follows:

1) No more than 10 people on a team at any given time. Team members will be swapped out at half time for new team members.
2) Minimum of 10 cheerleaders on the sidelines at all times.
2) We will use the standardized elementary school bouncy ball.
3) In order to prevent injury, no kicking and no hair pulling.
4) If the Zellner Brothers are available, we split them up. We call Nathan. His house is prominently featured in our film.
5) We will play 7 innings or however long we feel like it. It's friggin' hot.
6) The batter is out in situations similar to softball (forceouts, popouts, etc.). In addition, a runner is out when he/she is hit by a thrown ball below the waist.
7) Foul balls and walks will be called on a needed basis.
8) Leading off and stealing bases between pitches is allowed. It makes the game more interesting.
9) Bunting will be permitted because sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.
10) Shoes must be worn by all players. No metal, hard plastic, or polyurethane spikes or shoes with detachable cleats are allowed. That would be uncool.
11) If a team needs to forfeit because they're scared they'll get mauled by the other team, they need to let the other team know at least a week in advance.
12) A coin flip will determine the choice of home and visiting teams. Teams should hustle in and out between innings because it looks cool.
13) Actors or crew that have worked on both films will need to be divyed up between films.

Them the rules. Do you guys meet our challenge? Are you in?

Thursday, August 11, 2005

So I've been thinking about a challenge ...

This goes out to the cast/crew of GRETCHEN and THE CASSIDY KIDS. JUMPING OFF BRIDGES is putting together a kickball team and we need some challengers. Whaddaya think about that Mr. Collins, Mr. Poyser and Mr. Vaughn?

Zak, Mrs. Nelson, Mr. Nelson and me.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The sky's turned blue

I did a photoshoot for the Statesman last night. I felt like a fool. I'm sure the picture will make me look like this depressed, brooding girl. I'm not. The farthest thing, I hope. I'm sure I'll look like a total dork. It's ok,I guess.

My friend Kelly Roberts (Kelly Seitzinger now but I still like to call her Kelly Roberts) sent me the sweetest note this morning. She ended it with "You are sunshine." It made my day. I love my friends. More than absolutely anything in the whole wide world. I'm actually really excited to get back to Karen and Kurt and Ryan and Nevie and Nisha and Aaron and Debbie Smith ... everyone. I've missed them so much. I miss their silliness. I miss our stupid adventures. I need new adventures.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


I've never been a big fan of deadlines. I'm not a big fan of rushing things either. That's why I'm so torn on the looming deadlines. The Sundance deadline is September 30th. The IFP Rough Cuts Program is mid-September. We have to have a rough cut to submit in the next few weeks to IFP. Agh! We JUST wrapped. It's a good problem to have, I suppose. I trust Nevie in a big way. Luckily I did many scenes in one long take. I am excited to go to New York. Daniel, my music supervisor will be there attending CMJ. Christine and I have already planned our trip to my favorite Ethiopian restaurant.

I have to rally my post production team and get them in gear. There's no more time to be sad or wallow. I've got shit to do. I watched footage last night with Nevie. It's looking great. I'm in love with a scene when Michael takes Bryan to see a psychiatrist. It's a really good scene. All around. And of course there are moments when I'm kicking myself and raising my arms in the air as to why didn't I get this shot or didn't realize that this shot wouldn't cut together with this other shot. Such is life. We were supposed to get more footage today but it looks like it won't be here until tomorrow.

Working on wrap party stuff. Tons of people have responded. I might have to hide in a corner or in the bathroom. Or just stay on the dancefloor all night long. I'm so bad with parties. I get really nervous. And interviews. I gave such a lame interview to Chris the other day. I probably sounded so retarded. I said, "I don't know" a lot. And shook my head. And stammered over my words. I have to go to the photo shoot in a few minutes. I'm sure I'll mess that up too.

Monday, August 08, 2005

New York

jumping got into the IFP Rough Cuts Lab. Lorie, Stacy and I will head to New York in mid-September. It means me and Nevie have to work our little butts off over the next few weeks.

We'll get to visit with Michael Emerson. :)

Sunday, August 07, 2005

wishing it was yesterday

i'm sitting here a little numb. 10:12pm after wrapping the film.

my gratitude and sadness in this quiet moment goes beyond words.

All good things must come to an end

It's the last day of shooting.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Furthest from myself ...

I just woke up to the rain. 7 whole hours of sleep. Maybe a record for me in the past two weeks. I got three hours of sleep the night before. I felt it at the mid point of last night's shoot. I couldn't think straight and I was getting a little irritated at stupid things. When 1am rolled around, I just wanted to finish and go home and sleep. It's probably the first time I haven't been able to keep my cool. I know it was mostly the lack of sleep. It's not like I was yelling or anything, I just could feel myself getting really annoyed really quickly. The club was great up until that point. The exterior looked awesome. Billy Evans is so cute. Watching him and Bryan talk about guitars and bands made me giggle a lot. Even though they're only a year apart, Billy still looks like he's about twelve. This is the second film I've worked with Billy on. He's one that I decided to keep after the first film we did together. There are certain people that are keepers. People that I work with over and over again, both on cast and crew. You find good people and you stick with them. Sometimes you even write pieces for them. Speaking of which I'm excited to have some time to write again. Making movies inspires me to make more. I have one script ready to go and I have one that's been brewing for some time. I was asking Katie, Glen and Bryan the other night what kind of film or role they would want to act in if someone was writing something especially for them. Glen wants to be a spy or an astronaut, which I thought was awesome. Katie wants to play a character that's furthest from herself. And Bryan, I never got a straight answer from him.

I feel bad. Last night Justin was following me around with a camera all night long. At my most awful state I turned to him and asked him if he could go away. I need to call him and apologize. I feel pretty shitty about it. It was just too much after awhile.

I sat at Quack's yesterday for several hours getting the evite together and sent out. Clark Walker sat next to me after a bit. It took me a second or two to recognize him. When I did I had to tap him on the shoulder and strike up a conversation about how they got their underwater shot in LEVELLAND. It's a beautifully shot film about adolescence. We ended up talking for some time. We shared stories about tiny crews, creative lighting with very little money and mutual friends. I like him a whole lot. It was a really sweet afternoon chat.

Two more days left.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Laughing at nothing.

I've been wrangling email addresses for the wrap party. It's been one of the most tedious tasks I've had all summer. Making sure there are commas in between each one. Making sure there aren't any extra characters that might screw up the whole process. It's a really big deal, getting it all just right. I've never sent out an evite, so this is my first. I'm crossing my fingers that I don't screw it up.

I think I'm ready to start the last four days. I've been bracing myself. Trying to fight back the tears. I had a mocha about three hours ago and am well on my way to a crazy, fun evening. Chris Garcia's visiting the set tonight. I like that guy a lot. I like his honesty, no matter how brutal it can be. I love how much he loves movies.

I'm anxious to dance. One of the most important topics at our key crew meeting last night was whether we could dance at the Victory Grill after we wrapped tomorrow night. I've been looking forward to this night all summer long. I want to bust out The Throwing Muses, Madonna, The Go Gos, Cat Power, PJ Harvey, The Magnetic Fields, ABBA, Blondie, The Smiths, Ride, Adorable, Missy Elliott, The Shins ... I'm ready to dance. I'm anxious for the wrap party for the very same reason. I won't have time to schmooze or make small talk about the movie because I'll be on the dance floor most of the evening. I'll be hopped up on bittersweet energy.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

I can see a lot of life in you.

I feel very, very ill. My stomach is tied in knots. My hands were shaking this morning but have since subsided. It's a panic attack. I know this feeling all too well. I've cried three times today. Once when Jim and I were talking over email about our experiences this summer. The second time I was sitting in traffic on the phone with my mom telling her about Will Branch and his dedication to this film. How he said it was his Lord of the Rings. And lastly as I was chatting with my coworker about an hour ago. I don't want it to end. I don't want to stop seeing all of my new found friends every day. I had this feeling when my boyfriend of eight years broke up with me three summers ago. Nothing brought me comfort. So I'll savor every second of these last four days. I was telling Stacy I'll have to start running like mad again to confuse my depression. I'll meet with Nevie every Monday to go over the cut of the film and watch my actors. At least I'll have that.

We're applying to a program in New York and put together several scenes to drop in the mail tomorrow. Nevie cut together Bryan and Michael at the end of the film in a scene of complete emotional collapse. It reaffirmed everything for me. Watching the two of them work off each other flawlessly in a scene of utter poignancy.

We're waiting for some money to come in so we can get our footage from Alpha Cine. Film jail, as I like to call it. We have to pay a lot of people for many different things. We knew that this point would come and we're doing everything in our power to work through it. I laugh to myself when I think about that Statesman article and our fictitious budget. If only. I must say though, I'm thankful for the struggle. It's making it that much sweeter. I'm glad that people had doubt in us. I'm glad that people laughed and shook their heads. I'm glad that certain people didn't have faith. It made me want to to prove them wrong. It made me want to say at the end of the day, "Fuck you for not believing in us. We did it anyway. Take that".

Monday, August 01, 2005

now we know

The actors have figured out my code for excitement. If I'm really happy with a performance or a take or a camera move I'll usually shout "yeah, yeah, yeah!" Or usually with a performance, it's "Good, good, good! Moving on!". I was talking with Savannah and Bryan about it the other night. I was having a hard time with a particular scene. It was late and everyone was tired and worn down. I had to take both of them aside and "have a word" with them. I've become more confident in performances and getting the performances I need. They know when they're not there. I'm sure I'm still making a ton of mistakes. I'm sure I'll make many, many more until the day I die. Until my very last film. I love my actors. My kids are incredible. I love how much they LOVE to act. How serious they are about it. I watch Glen repeat a line over and over and over again to himself while we're setting up lights until he gets it just right. Savannah asks me a million questions ... about everything. Katie gets frustrated with her performances even though I think she's perfection. Bryan and I have talks about motivation of a line or a movement. They rule my world!

I think I discovered my favorite lines in the script ...

GROVE: Have you gotten to number 4 yet?
LINDSAY: I'm still on number 3.
GROVE: Well, tell me when you get to number 4.