Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Four stars

I'm currently in Newcastle shooting a new film, flutter, with Joe Anderson (and a host of others including Laura Fraser and Billy Zane - get me) but on Sunday I have a day off and am travelling to Leeds to do a Q and A at a screening of 1234. Much as I'm enjoying the flutter shoot it'll be great to get back to 1234 business.

After that it's back to work until the 9th march when I'm going to the London screening, then more work until the Oxford screening on the 22nd. Wish I could go to more but thankfully the cast are doing Q and A's at the others.

But best news of all has been a four star review in Empire magazine which was jolly nice of them and has put everyone in a good mood. So good in fact that I may dress like the director in the photo for the Q and A. Or I may pretend to be French, I haven't decided. Anything to deflect from the horror of having to stand on a stage talking.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

UK Release for 1234 announced!

Drum roll please... 1234 will be in cinemas from tomorrow!

Appropriately enough for a film about a band, 1234 is going to touring around the UK from Wednesday 24th February. It is part of new project New British Cinema Quarterly, which takes the most original and distinctive British films from the festival circuit and brings them to the UK's flagship independent cinemas.

As a special bonus for audiences, each screening will be accompanied by a Q&A from either the cast or the filmmakers.

Kicking off as part of Glasgow Film Festival tomorrow night, the tour is already booked into venues around the country. Here are the full dates:

Glasgow Film Theatre - Wednesday 24th February
Edinburgh Filmhouse - Thursday 25th February
Leeds Hyde Park - Sunday 7th March
Renoir London - Tuesday 9th March
Nottingham Broadway - Wednesday 10th March
Derby QUAD - Wednesday 10th March (yep, two in one night!)
Sheffield Showroom - Thursday 11th March
Bristol Watershed - Sunday 14th March
Chapter Cardiff - Monday 15th March
Norwich Cinema City - Tuesday 16th March
Oxford Phoenix - Monday 22nd March
Cambridge Arts Picturehouse - Tuesday 23rd March
Newcastle Tyneside - Monday 29th March


Sunday, January 24, 2010

The clock is ticking

Yes I know we keep saying this, but it really is true, we have excellent news to post up here, it's just we're waiting on a few dates so we can post it with the maximum impact, so apologies for it all taking so long but it really will be worth it.

And with bands like the Vivian girls marking a comeback for that whole nineties indie sound the timing really couldn't be better unless someone like the Yummy Fur were to reform.

Oh, hang on, they have. You see, the timing really couldn't be any better.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

It's been a while

... but these things happen. There's not been a huge amount to report because the world of film distribution is the slowest moving world I have ever come across.

We have a few companies who have expressed an interest in releasing 1234. Some just want to do a theatrical, some just DVD and some want to do both. This is good, but it takes an age to get any answers out of them. I suppose they have to be careful as they can only afford to buy a few films a year so need to make sure they're happy with what they get, but it's still amazing that it can take weeks just to get the simplest of email replies. One foreign distributor, who actually requested a screener, still hadn't watched it six months later. I can't help feeling that the inevitable online releasing of films in the future will give distributors a much needed kick up the arse. If I can include money for promotion in my budget and then just release the film online I can get it out there right away. I've got a lot of respect for some distributors (and luckily that includes the ones interested in us), the ones who take real care with promotion and placement, but it does seem to be a business that's still operating as if it's 1960.

Hopefully we'll have something to report soon, if only because it would help stem all the 'when's your film coming out then?' emails we get. The fact we get loads from people we don't know only underlines what we've always known, that there's an audience for this film. There's a lot of people out there who love the world of indie music and would be interested in seeing it on film. Obviously I hope they like the film, but at the very least they're interested in it, more so I think than any distributors we've spoken to realise. And, as a distributor, what better way to be proved wrong than to find your film more successful than you thought.

In the meantime other things are being lined up. Carson Films ltd, the company Simon and I set up, are busy putting together our slate of projects. We've got 4 features and one documentary on our slate, the first of which, albion, all about a group of archaeologists running a summer camp to build an Iron Age roundhouse (hence the photo) is just being lined up to send in to the UKFC for development funding. I think it's going to be great (but then I would, wouldn't I), possibly the most dramatic thing we've ever done, but still funny and touching. I've been working on the story with Eithne Farry, who is the books ed at Marie Claire but is of course best known as the person who made all of Lyndsey's outfits in 1234. As soon as she's finished her new book she can start work on all Iron Age costumes that the archaeologists are going to wear.

And at the exact opposite end of the spectrum, we just shot a video for the new Tender Trap single, which I'll try and put up here soon (if I can remember how you do that). They had no money so we shot the whole thing on a still camera running at 3 shots a second, then blended all the shots together. It looks very odd, but in a good way I think. Total budget? One lunch for editor.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Yes, ANOTHER screening

We had the cast and crew screening on Tuesday which was great fun, though slightly odd as right after the film finished we had to run over the road and watch the Chelsea / Liverpool game, which was so painful I couldn't bring myself to watch much of. But that aside it was great to see everyone again. It seems really odd that it was exactly one year after we started, in one way it felt longer, but in another way it only seems like last month.

And now we're getting ready for another screening. We're showing in Sheffield as part of the Sensoria festival on Monday 27th at 6pm, after which, oh joy, Simon and I have to do a Q & A. Watching the film with an audience is a uniquely painful experience (it just becomes a list of little things I'd do differently) but that's nothing compared to the horror at having to stand on stage and talk about it. Last week there was an interview I did running on Shorts TV, and having seen that I now know what the Q & A will look like as well as sound like, and I don't like. But there's no getting out of it, so I may as well just get drunk and do it.

Meanwhile everything has pretty much been signed for our middle east release, and we're still waiting on news for the UK. We'll get there in the end, but my god it takes a long time. I never really believed people when they said making the film was only half the job, but now I do. In the meantime Simon and I are both signing up for new projects, but I'm not going to mention those until the ink has dried on the contracts as otherwise it's bad ju-ju and it will all fall apart.

So if you're near Sheffield a week on Monday, come on down to the screening, but probably best to leave before the Q & A starts, it'll just be two drunk men rambling on and no one wants to see that.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


after all this time, we have a CAST AND CREW screening. It's going to be on the 14th April at 6.15pm at the Soho hotel. It's taken for ever to arrange because quite simply we had no money left and screening rooms are expensive, but now it's finally going to happen. It'll be great to see everybody again, but the best thing about it happening on that date is that the 14th April is the day we started filming, so it will be exactly a year.

Now if one of the distributors could just hurry up and buy the film that would make everything just dandy, but it seems getting a quick decision from a distributor in this economic climate is a near impossibility, so we'll have to just sit and wait. We've got quite good at that.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Another screening

1234 screened this afternoon as part of the London popfest, and it was a slightly less painful experience than the LFF screening. It was less painful in that this wasn't the first time I'd had to watch it with an audience, but painful none the less as all I did was look at every shot and think why didn't I do this or that (apart from the balcony scene which I'm happy with). This doesn't mean I'm not happy with what's on screen, I still am, but there's this weird feeling that a film is never finished and what's on screen is just a work in progress, and that if you just gave me some more time and money there's a few tweaks I'd like to make. I know that's never going to happen, and in fact i hope it never does as it would drive me insane.

Meanwhile we've got another screening, and it's up north this time. We've been asked to screen at the Sensoria festival in Sheffield, which is a festival of music and film, 24th - 30th April, and we happily said yes, so book your tickets now. Or whenever they go on sale.

Then this evening we went to the Buffalo bar for more London Popfest, including the always lovely Betty and the werewolves (though I was late and missed almost their entire set), the fantastic Zipper (I think) from Spain (I think again), and finally an amazing set from Rob and Amelia's (pictured in earlier days) new version of Tender Trap, who were amazing in a Motown / Phil Spector / stand up drumming type way. I wasn't sure what they'd be like as it's many years since I've seen them, but it was without doubt one of the best gigs I've seen by them in any of their many guises. If only they'd done this a year ago we could have had them in 1234, and all the better it would have been for it.

I guess I'll have to add an indie club scene to my new script. God knows how, but I'm sure we can find a way.