Hello film loving people!
I wanted to start this thread on how I have gotten to the point I am now with Stricken. Currently we have wrapped the majority of Production after 4 months of filming and are into Post. Over 60 people helped with this project. Let me tell you how it came to be.
Be forewarned, this is a long story.
Back in the twilight of my beginnings, I entered hero-fest on http://www.dvxuser.com I submitted a film (my narrative first) called "Nine to Five Ninja". I used the input I got from that to attempt my first serious film for Horror fest called "Stricken". I shot it on the DVX with an M2 adapter and learned a ton through the process.
The movie ended up being too long, so I entered it as exhibition and learned a ton and made a bunch of friends there in the process.
I then entered Stricken into the Action on Film Festival in Long beach and was nominated for Best horror film of the year and best sound design. It won for best sound design, and so I started writing a feature script. Over the next year, I finalized the script and attached actors to the project seeking a funding of at first 50,000, but later 5 million with Hyperactive Studios. Many funding deals seemed about to happen and then they would fall through. Very disappointing times. In these times, I filmed my last short "PUSH" for Twilight Fest.
I submitted Stricken the Feature Script to Action on Film Festival which had now moved to Pasadena and it won Best Adapted Screenplay, encouraging me to keep trying.
I then traveled to Sacramento and pitched the project to Nehst (a producer) and was torn to shreds. I then curled up into a ball and stopped pursuing the film.
It has been almost 12 months since that time, and I finally became fed up with the waiting, it has been 3 1/2 years now since I have started trying to make Stricken the Feature. I feel like I could either wait all my life, or get off my butt and make it. I have chosen the latter, and just wrapped Production on the Feature Film www.strickenthefeature.com
I believe in the project and trust in the skills I have acquired in my 3 1/2 years of trying time and again to make a movie I could be proud of. My reel is filled with those first attempts, and while I am proud of it, there were always things I wished I could do better and learned from.
I was directing too big and began an intensive study into directing, reading "Directing Actors" by Judith Weston, and moving away from Result oriented directing into existing in the moment.
I found people who believe in me to fund the movie. I did not go pounding the pavement for their money. I just started filming and they became involved. I believe I have attained a look that feels much more expensive than what we actually spent.
People worked with passion and intensity long long hours, but we did it. I have a sound designer attached from Drag me to Hell. David Fine http://pro.imdb.com/name/nm0006718/http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0006718/ was great and helped us make it through as well as delivering some great acting to the character of the alcoholic detective pursuing the supernatural killer. The lead, Stephanie French is a new face to Feature Films and did a fantastic job.
Justin, Nicole and Ian McAleece of Blare Media helped us out by bringing the Red One to an intensive 24hour Green screen and effects shot.
We just purchased a Dual I7 setup with 24 gigs of ram to cut and do effects on. We are working out of CS4 on a PC platform.
We began shooting in April and just wrapped. I wanted to keep you guys in the loop as this Horror movie progresses into a release next year.
Here are some screen grabs from the film. You can see more at the site.
And one BTS scene of the Hanging wall we built in action:
So the trick to making a feature from nothing.
1. Don't give up...ever...no matter what
2. Surround yourself with passionate people who believe in you
3. Make sure you are ready...practice and make short movies, even if you fail, until you feel it is time to take the plunge, because it is a HUGE difference and will take over your life
4. Have a great story and cast well (Age appropriate actors who are the best...not just friends or the convenient actors)
5. Throw your life into it and never ever Settle for mediocre. Always give 110%
6. Never stop learning!
If you have any questions feel free to ask and I am excited to be here!
You're words are very true Matt. You must believe in yourself first for people to believe in you. the more passion you show the more they'll follow you. I learned this over my last project which was a five month project. No one got paid and I was taking their Friday nights and weekends for five months. I kept everyone together and strong and even had to deal with some difficulties but with everyone's passion and determination we managed to wrap it up on February this year.
Thanks for your info, there's still a whole lot I need to learn.
Well, I am nearing the completion of a majority of the VFX for Stricken. Sound is going extremely well and is being done by an awesome studio out of Burbank. Score is coming along nicely and I think we should be done by May or June. -Matt
STRICKEN WILL BE PREMIERING TWO PLACES SOON! (Let me know if you are coming and how many people you are bringing so I can let the theater know) Tickets are not expensive and it will help the Avenal Hospital who was so gracious to us!
Local Premiere (Red Carpet Event-Formal Dress)- June 25th at Avenal Theater 7pm and 9pm (More details for the actors coming soon)
Matt - I have been your #1 fan ( besides your great Dad ) for the past five years plus - you are so
talented and such a great person. I may be in Utah and Colorado casting a film during the Premire
Date in June - but I will attend the Pasadena event - I am just so proud of Casting ..."Stricken"
thanks for this incredible credit. You deserve the "Red Carpet" for creating this great project for
our local actors to work on...WOW.....INCREDIBLE...YOU ROCK.....
I loved what you wrote about creating "Stricken" - thanks for presenting such a popular
Directors Workshop for us - all the actors want you to come back again - we will try to
do that again this fall. carollyn
Stupid question, and I am sorry for asking, but are we talking about Avenal, Ca? West of NAS Lemoore and all? I had no idea they had a theater. I used to work with Joe and Arlene Santino of the Avenal Times, if it is still around. I guess the Chimes still is. All this looks really cool and I look forward to seeing this movie! Also, don't be surprised if I corner you and ask about a million questions, too. Break a leg, and see you on the 25th. I am hoping to bring a friend, so two for me.
Yep, that is the right Avenal. We filmed for 2 weeks in the Avenal Hospital for free and so we are giving back by Premiering there and donating some of the proceeds to the Hospital. Also, they have a brand new renovated theater with top of the line HD projection technology and Dolby Digital Surround sound...so Rocking setup! They are handling all the red carpet stuff, Skylights etc. Should be fun! I will post the link to tickets as soon as I get it. -Matt Sconce
"The red carpet event will start about 5pm with the first showing at 6."? I see this also: Local Premiere (Red Carpet Event-Formal Dress)- June 25th at Avenal Theater 7pm and 9pm. Is it 6 or 7? Sorry, but I am driving from Visalia and want to make sure I get there for the first show and the red carpet event, right on time. Thanks!