Friday, January 29, 2010

Future of America

In 2001 I tried my hand at a documentary about a group of kids that dropped out of the public school system for all different reasons and then found their way back into a charter school to finish their degree. I spent over a year or two following them to birthday parties, old schools, cemeteries, hang outs with friends, classes, prom and eventually graduation (for at least one of them). I didn't love the technical aspect of putting it all together, but I did love listening to their stories and following them through their lives-- highs and lows.

The two biggest things I learned from this experience-- I have a major soft spot for troubled teens and I'm not a documentary filmmaker. I wish I had the patience, technical skills and courage to pursue documentary filmmaking, but I don't. So--

Flash forward to 2007. Stacy and I started working with a group of our teen film students on putting together a narrative version. We'd collaboratively write a script and shoot it documentary style. That went forward for a few months and then collapsed.

Flash forward to 2008. Stacy and I and the same group of students decided to go back to the original documentary idea. We met with a major non-profit in Austin for a few months and tried to connect with their teens. Once again, it fell through.

Flash forward to 2010. The teens (now several years older) decided (on their own) to go back and make a narrative version. They recently came to me, 84 page script in hand full of questions and excitement. You have no idea how happy it made me to get that email in my inbox. So I will be their proud mentor as they move forward into pre-production on the feature that they hope to shoot this summer.

Go team Kick Ass Kids!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Monday Monday

I've been swimming in student scripts all weekend ... coming up for breath to watch The Bachelor and spend some time with friends. And in between all of that, I've been glued to the mass tweets about Sundance. I'm trying to follow all of my friends' successes. Amidst all of that, I haven't had a chance to work on my own projects or felt compelled to for some weirdo reason.

I will say it was nice to have an option agreement in my inbox Saturday afternoon for Love Me (this teen thriller I wrote last year). So now it'll be a back and forth for weeks between lawyers to get the agreement just right. Hopefully it won't take as long as the last one. It'll definitely pay some upcoming bills.

The outline that Toddy and I worked on over the holidays got shot down. The company changed the mandate of what they're looking for. One minute they want this, the next minute they want that. It's a bummer but whatever, it's cool. We have a pretty solid outline to continue tweaking before we decide whether to dive into the actual script, or pitch.

All the while we're prepping for an LA trip in March. Looking forward to meetings, friends and visiting sets.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Love Bug in Houston, 2/4

Thursday, February 4th, 8:00pm, FREE
Houston, TX
316 Main Street (between Preston and Congress)
VideoFest 2009 Texas Show (81 min)

  • Love Bug by Kat Candler (6:00min.)
  • Change by Ya'Ke Smith (1:00min.)
  • Cold Calls by Jack Daniel Stanley (7:00min.)
  • Dig Deep by Mark Birnbaum and Manny Mendoza (7:00min.)
  • Jimmy Kuehnle's Big Red and Walking Fish by Mark Walley and Angela Guerra (6:00min.)
  • Lambs by Stephen Huff (12:00min.)
  • Sleet/Snow by Daniel Laabs (13:00min.)
  • Western Brothers' Adventure Story by Drew Xanthopoulos (7:00min.)
  • Weight of the World by Jenny Goddard (6:00min.)
  • Trash Day by Sam Lerma (3:00min.)
  • Unbelievable 4 by Sukwon Shin (4:00min.)
  • Uprush by Kim Hall (9:00min.)

  • Upcoming LOVE BUG Screenings
    Omaha Film Festival
    Florida Film Festival

    Friday, January 15, 2010

    Comedic Inspiration

    For comedy inspiration ... go to John Hughes. The master.

    Wednesday, January 13, 2010

    Ola Podrida - Belly of the Lion

    It's on repeat in the car.

    Script Outlines

    It's a week of outlining two projects. Toddy and I pitched a slew of ideas around Thanksgiving and they picked one. So we've been outlining it ever since. It's a big, family, comedy adventure involving modern day knights. It's silly over the top and fun. It's a little bit more by the book because of the nature of who it's for. We're polishing up the almost 20 page outline to hand over early next week. I'm pretty proud so far of what we have.

    And then there's Brother In Law. We've finished our character profiles and have a rough outline sketch. It's still in its outline infancy stage. It's more of an 80s family comedy (my favorite!). This one we have free reign on since it's a spec project. We can make it a little more crass and rude than the other one.

    And I'm still plugging away at The Child Thief. I'm at about a 80 page rough rough rough first draft. There's a ton of work to be done to even get it to a normal rough draft. I'm just juggling projects right now.

    Notes are coming back on my teen romance outlines this week. I'll have 2-3 weeks to turn around new drafts before finding out if I get the job.

    Unfortunately with the start of school at UT next week, I'll be swamped with script notes for my students for a few weeks. It will be busy busy busy.

    And about to buy a ticket for LA for mid March. Hopefully I'll have it in hand by Monday.

    Monday, January 11, 2010

    The Bachelor is My Friend

    I can't help it. I love The Bachelor. I admit it. I'll stop everything. Curl up on the couch, pull my blanket to my chin and watch on pins and needles to find out why, oh why would Rosalynn cheat on Jake with one of The Bachelor staffers. Say what? That cheating, back stabbing bitch! Sayonara sweetheart. That's right, you pack your little yellow weird looking suitcase and hit the road! And Michelle. Hello, psycho! Of course Jake isn't taking you on a one on one date because you might tie him up in a California cave somewhere and go All My Chidren soap opera crazy on his ass. FREAK! Oh, the drama, I LOVE IT so much!

    My bets are on Ali.

    Goliath - Zellner Brothers

    Rent it on Netflix

    Buy it at Amazon

    Or watch it all month long at The Sundance Channel

    Screenplay Workshop - Jill Chamberlain

    The Screenplay Workshop - Winter Registration
    New workshops begin next week, including --

    Taught by Jill Chamberlain

    (The Screenplay Workshop's director & a professional screenwriter & story consultant)
    10 week program
    Central Austin classroom
    All levels welcome
    ("from complete beginners to professionals with scripts ready to workshop")

    DAY & TIME
    pick one:
    * Tuesday Master Class (Tuesdays 7-9:30 pm, Jan 19-March 23)
    - or -
    * Saturday Master Class (Saturdays 1:30-4 pm, Jan 23-March 27)

    Any new student who registers for the Master Class by Friday, Jan 15th
    & mentions offer code "Kat" will receive $15 off !
    (this offer cannot be combined with any other discount)

    * 5 Week Workshop (choose from Tuesday or Saturday meeting times)
    * Private Script Consultation & Instruction
    For complete course syllabi, registration and more:

    Thursday, January 07, 2010

    The 2010 Chronicles

    I've always been the person who knew exactly what I wanted to do in life. Well, almost "always". In high school, I thought I'd be an actress on Broadway. That is, until freshman year at Emerson College and my Monday - Friday 8am acting class that left me a weeping mess after having to delve into all of the skeletons in my closet so I could draw on them to give a really kick ass performance but since I was only 17 and 50,000 miles from home and super crazy homesick, it just left me hating my acting teacher and thinking she was the devil for making me cry so much.

    But once I hit my junior year of college and discovered that people actually make movies and somehow they don't magically appear in a theater near me-- I fell in love. And since that moment of enlightenment, I've been on a crazy mission of being a filmmaker. Never once did I think I'd change paths/careers or dabble or canoodle in something else. I kind of have a one track mind, you see. When I set my mind to something, I'm kind of fierce in trying to make it happen. For good or bad, that's just how I am. And for good or bad, I can't help it.

    I've made lots of headway since then. Slowly but surely. This is not an overnight kind of thing, believe it or not. Those "overnight successes" that they write about have usually been working their asses off for years and years before then.

    I don't think I'm the next Kathryn Bigelow or Jane Campion, in fact usually I think I suck 90% of the time. That's just the self loathing in me. But I love making movies and writing stories more than anything else in the world. So if I'm at least half decent at it, I'll continue to do it. It's kind of something I can't not do, y'know?

    I've been chronicling my journey for over ten years now. Unfortunately, the early chronicles live in a folder somewhere on a hard drive somewhere in a file cabinet in a closet in my office.

    But I'm excited to chronicle 2010. A year I know will be a good one. Both for me and for so many of my friends. There are lots of irons in the fire (is that the right phrase?)-- as a director and a screenwriter. Probably more as a screenwriter, but I'm totally cool with that too.

    Hopefully I can continue to offer a little bit of perspective into one filmmaker's adventures. Because they're all so completely different.

    Ok, enough of this. I have to go finish a family comedy outline to hand off to my writing partner.

    Wednesday, January 06, 2010

    For Lack of My Own Words

    I stole this from Ama's blog, but it kind of says what I've been feeling lately. I need to get out of my head and breathe some fresh air.

    Yay Ryan!

    Friday, January 01, 2010

    2010 New Year's Resolutions

    Lots and lots more of this.

    More of this.

    No more of this.

    More time to hang out with friends.

    And family.