Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Summer Film Camp for Girls - Day One

We have 16 girls from 6th to 11th grade. They range from girl's who love She's the Man to girls who love The Science of Sleep and everything in between. Yesterday they wrote their 3-page scripts about learning that being yourself is cool, slapstick comedies about tissue paper and dramas about dealing with divorce. They're a smart bunch with wild and wonderful ideas. It's fun to watch them get excited about setting up a certain shot or creating production design. Today we talk about casting, cameras and sound. They'll shoot camera exercises and finish storyboarding their stories.

Vacuuming Spiders

Stacy sent this to me which I thought was appropriate.

Vacuuming Spiders

I admire their geometrical patience,
the tidy way they wrap up leftovers,
their willingness to be the earth's
most diligent consumers of small bitternesses.

Sometimes at night I hear them
casting silk threads, clicking their spinnerets,
plucking their webs like blind Irish harpists.
I can almost taste the fruit of the fly
like sucking the pulp from a grape.

But when their webs on the ceiling
begin to converge, and the floor
glitters with shards of insect wings
I drag out the vacuum
and poke its terrible snout under the sofa,
behind the radio—everywhere,

for this is the home of a human being
and I must act like one
or the whole picture goes haywire.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Last Night at the Park Plaza Lodge

We'll be heading home in the morning. It's been a wonderful visit. Highlights include:
  • Riding in an elevator with Liev Schreiber at the Beverly Center
  • Smiling at Vince Vaughn at the Farmer's Market
  • Getting called "Freeway People" by some gated community guy in Malibu that Kurt almost got into a major brawl with.
  • Seeing two friends exchange vows in Culver City in front of a small group of friends and family.
  • George's toast at the Reception
  • Eating In N Out Burger at 11pm after a long drive back from Malibu.
  • Kurt and MV seeing Dave Navarro getting into his Hummer at a Coffee Bean across from our hotel and then hearing him 10 minutes later on Indie 103.1 hosting a radio show.
  • Freaking out at Amoeba Music because it's too big and there are too many good deals. They have a friggin' used Criterion Collection section. Say what?
  • Meeting Debbie's friend who's a stand-in for Turtle on Entourage.
  • I'm sure I left something out. Oh yeah, the granola at Doughboy's which I had two days in a row.

Friday, July 27, 2007

One Night in Los Angeles

After a much delayed flight into L.A., Mark and I got to the hotel and met up with George. By this time it was 9pm L.A. time, 11pm Austin time. The time change really doesn't suit me. We headed out in search of food and Entourage sites. First up, and I could be totally wrong about this, but we went to Jerry's Famous Deli on Beverly where I think they shot the morning scene with Mandy Moore. And yes, in the first 3 hours of stepping foot into Los Angeles, we scored a parking ticket.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Aaron and Debbie Get Married

Mark and I, along with Kurt, MV, George, Jim, Mandy and Victor are all headed to Los Angeles for Aaron and Debbie's wedding. Mark and I have an afternoon flight. I'm hoping that this mad weather we're having in Austin won't stop us. I'm anxious to see sunny skies. I literally drove through a lake to get to the office this morning. This rain is getting a little worrisome.

All Mark wants to do when we get there is hit up every Entourage spot. We made it through Season 2 last night and ready to find out what happens to the boys in Season 3. Will Siagon become a big hit? Will Mandy and Vince get along on set? Will James Cameron go over budget? We'll have to wait to find out.

Next week ... GIRL'S FILM CAMP!!! And then a little break.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Disturbia Duo Reunite

I love it!

If I hadn't mentioned it before, I was a big fan of Disturbia.

Entourage Addictions

My husband and I are addicted to Entourage. We're in the middle of Season 2. What's curious is that while watching Turtle, Drama, Vince and E spend their days wandering the LA streets and frequenting places like Urth, Coffee Bean and Toast, it makes me want to be a "Hollywood Player" too. I feel terrible and disgusting even saying it. But it's true. I want Ari Gold to represent me. And James Cameron to know that after the first ten minutes of my movies that I'm "genius" and "brilliant". And that maybe, just maybe, I should direct Aquaman.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

I Heart River Phoenix

Stacy and David tagged me. So here goes:

1. We have to post these rules before we give you the facts.
2. Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
3. People who are tagged write their own blog post about their eight things and include these rules.
4. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged and that they should read your blog.

8 things:

1. My great great grandfather's second cousin (or something like that) invented Coca Cola. I'm a Candler. It's a big deal in Atlanta (where I was born) and where the Coca Cola empire lives, but not so much in Texas.

2. I used to keep baby frogs as pets when I was a kid.

3. I was so confused about french kissing when I was in junior high that I had to ask my friend Kelly MacEwan, "So what exactly do you do in there?" My first french kiss was with Rick Hill in Karen Browning's back yard. In high school Rick was a YAFer (Young Americans for Freedom) . Now he's a lawyer for the Alabama Supreme Court.

4. I eat Mango Passion Granola every single day. But sadly Central Market has been out for a week and I've had to eat Light Crunchy Granola that has sunflower seeds in it. It's so not the same.

5. I love River Phoenix. I've crushed on him since seeing Stand By Me at a slumber party long, long ago. His picture from magazines covered my junior high bedroom. I read every cheesy Teen Bop article and every cheap paperback biography I could get my hands on. I watched everything from Mosquito Coast to A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon not just once, but over and over again. My freshman year of high school his band Aleka's Attic played at Einstein's in Jacksonville and I got to stand next to him at the bar. And in those few moments, I was breathless. I remember it like it was yesterday.

October 31, 1993, the night he died, Karen and Ama were too afraid to tell me. I woke up to the news report and flipped out. I wept the entire day. I've never felt for another actor the way I did for River Phoenix.

6. I was the lead singer in a band in college, Jake Ryan (yes, in reference to Sixteen Candles). The only thing we ever released was a 7" record on beautiful white vinyl. I still have a ton of them in a box in my closet. We played rock shows with the likes of Thinking Fellers Union Local 282, Babe the Blue Ox, Versus and Sleepyhead. I even wrote a song about River Phoenix. Our band broke up the afternoon we were to head out on our second tour.

7. I have the tiniest fingernails you'll ever see on a human being.

8. My family and my friends are my everything.

I’m tagging Meredith, Maya, Kelly, Clare, Joe, Ama, Ryan and Mandy

Oh how they make me so proud.

The summer classes are over and the big screening was a huge hit. To see all of their faces and excitement before and then after the screening made my month. I loved it. They made me proud. Both my mom and mother in law came and were beaming from ear to ear. My mom is a loud laugher at the movies and so it was nice to have her giggling at full volume for my students and then whispering loudly in my ear, "that was just precious!". It was sweet.

So mom leaves tomorrow after a wonderful week of visiting. I know she's anxious to get back to my dad and Florida. Next up, I'm trying to convince my brother and my nephews to come see Aunt Kat in Texas.

I finished the first draft of two short films I've confirmed to shoot in October. Both are on the comedic side. I've probably gotten pretty rusty having not shot anything since the summer of 2005. What the hell is that all about. I've been writing up a storm, but I need to be on set again. I need to create something or I'll lose my mind. So I marked my calendar, set up some audition space for September and will move forward at full force.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Michael Emerson's Emmy Nomination

A huge congrats to Michael for his Best Supporting Actor Nomination for LOST.

And another huge congrats to Austin's own Beth Sepko for her Emmy nomation for Friday Night Lights.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Mom and School

My mom's in town. I've been dragging her to test projection at the Dobie, meet up with my friends, the book store. It's been fun. We have a few more days together. She'll come to my students' screening as will my mother in law who's coming to town special for it. I'm really proud of my students and what they've accomplished. I'm sad it's over again, but I'm excited about a little bit of rest.

I head to Los Angeles next week for Aaron and Debbie's wedding. And then I'll be back in time for Girl's Film Camp that Stacy and I are teaching in two weeks. AND THEN I'll have a solid month off. I'll have my nights again and my Saturdays. And then back to school in September. I'll start my Film Club at the Ann Richard's School too.

I was telling my mom that I was a little bummed that I haven't shot anything this year. But aside from that, I've accomplished a lot. I've slowly been weaning myself off of the day job and into teaching full-time. That's a pretty big thing, I guess.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Austin Film Classes

Admissions are open for my next semester of students. I have 16 slots for my Script to Screen Class and 10 slots for my Teen Filmmaking Class. Below are the descriptions. Stacy and I are teaching the advanced classes next round. Those are almost full. They were by invite only. I'm really looking forward to the fall. New classes, new after school program at the Ann Richards School. New scripts, new shorts, new feature collaboration ... Good stuff.

Tuesdays, 6:30pm – 9:00p
September 11, 18, 25, October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, November 6, 20, 27, December 4, 11
FINAL SCREENING – December 15th

Saturdays, 10am – 12pm
September 8, 15, 22, 29, October 6, 13, 20, 27, November 3, 17, December 1, 8
FINAL SCREENING – December 15th

The Austin Film School
(906 E. 5th Street, Suite 106)
Tuition - $550
For more information: www.storieproductions.com

These hands-on courses will take you through the process of making a short film from script to screen . Learn everything you need to know from screenwriting, shooting, scheduling, marketing, sound, directing, festivals … Each class will be broken into small filmmaking teams. Each team will produce a short film using digital video technology. The classes will feature guest speakers from the Austin Film Community on cameras, lighting and other elements of filmmaking.

Kat Candler's films (cicadas, jumping off bridges, Roberta Wells) have screened at Slamdance, South By Southwest, National Institutes of Health, The Carter Center and on PBS. Her scripts have participated in the IFP Market, been Semi-Finalists in the Sundance Screenwriter's Lab, Finalists in the Chesterfield Fellowship and won first prize at the Rhode Island International Screenplay Competition. Kat is working with her producing partner on a documentary television series, Roadside USA and the narrative, Brain Brawl. She teaches film at the Austin School of Film and several after school programs including the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders.

What previous Participants have said ...

"I cannot begin to express how much I've enjoyed your class and how much I've gotten out of it. If I told you the truth, you'd probably think I was trying to butter you up to get a better grade, but I don't think we're getting grades, so that will hopefully dispel that idea. Seriously, your enthusiasm for film and for us potential filmmakers is both inspiring and contagious, and I really wish I could come to class every night. Not only that, the amount of knowledge you have and are willing to share is completely awe-inspiring. I am not at all exaggerating, you can ask anyone, I say the same about you behind your back! I don't know why you do it, Kat, but I will always be tremendously grateful. Thank you!"
-Nick Dengler, 2007 Script to Screen Class

"The film class is organized in a manner to help the student create a short film and give you a good understanding of what it takes to make any length of film. Kat is very knowledgable and truly is a professional filmaker which gives the students the insights and tips and tricks to get a film made. Plus you meet great and interesting people!"
-Greg Omelchuck, 2007 Script to Screen Class

"Kat's class was one of the best filmmaking workshops I've taken, and I've taken a lot of 'em! No matter what kind of film you're interested in making, she's supportive. And she gives you all kinds of practical advice, from places to rent equipment to contracts for actors and locations to forms for copyrighting your scripts."
-Mitch Collier, 2007 Teen Filmmaking Class

Short End Magazine Interview

I did an interview with Short End Magazine a few weeks ago. It came out today.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Joe O'Connell's Book Release Party

If you don't know Joe, you should. He's a wonderful human being and a kick ass writer. You should all go support him at Book People on July 26th, 7pm at Book People. Pick up his book, say hello and give him a hug for me. Sadly, I'll be enroute to Los Angeles for a friend's wedding or else I'd be first in line. Long ago when I made cicadas, Joe was the very first person who interviewed me for the San Antonio Express and the Austin American Statesman. We've been friends and supporters of each other ever since. I'll be there in spirit Joe.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sleepy sleepy sleepy

I've been living at the Austin School of Film again. It feels like it at least. I'm here in the Mac lab by myself waiting for a student's project to burn onto a DVD. We're gearing up for a screening in a week and a half. I remember this time last semester and the obnoxiously late nights spent with Stacy making DVDs. Sadly, this time I don't have a friend to hang out with. It's just me and the internet while I wait.

I'm sad this semester is coming to an end. I've met yet another batch of kick ass students, both young and old. Speaking of kick ass students, Monday night I went to a read through of a feature that one of my old teen students had. He's 17, I think. He wrote a fun, teen buddy movie that had me chuckling out loud through through a good part of it. He'll be shooting it next summer. As Stacy and I were talking on the way home, we decided we really want to help him get it off the ground. However we can. We shall see. We need to do that with our own stuff too.

I've been getting awesome notes from friends on Spider in the Bathtub. And tomorrow night my writing group goes over it. I'm anxious to get my head back into that script and knock out a final draft.

Oh god, please let the DVD be done soon. Last night I got home about 10:30pm after class and my husband thought I was mad at him because I couldn't form words I was so tired. My bed time is 10pm. Shit, it's 9:46pm now. Only 78% left to go.

Monday, July 09, 2007


When I saw the trailer ... oh ... what a let down. Huh? Rats? Cooking. It didn't look funny or sweet or imaginative like every other Pixar film. And then came the reviews. Brian gave me the first. It was a must see. Up there with Monsters Inc. and The Incredibles. Really? My hesitation quickly turned to a rush to the theater.

I loved it. I wanted to buy the DVD, race home and watch it again and again. I wanted to pour through the script. Read every word. Indulge in Brad Bird's imagination on page and then be floored at how the adventure translated to screen. I spent last week feeling like shit. Sad, antisocial, hopeless. And then a little rat and a skinny, scary critic turned me around. I was a kid again. Full of hope, excitement and wonderment. Next to Billy Madison and Monster House, this might be my new comfort film.