Spiderhouse Productions Ltd - Blog http://spiderhouse.co.uk Blog from Spiderhouse Productions Ltd en-us Wednesday, 11 Nov 2009 23:17:42 -0500 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss <![CDATA['The Horror, The Horror' ~ The Marojin Shoot Wraps]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/19/The-Horror-The-Horror-The-Marojin-Shoot-Wraps/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/19/The-Horror-The-Horror-The-Marojin-Shoot-Wraps/ 29 March 10 Filming can sometimes be pretty unpleasant. Long hours, taxing problems, uncomfortable environments, that kind of thing.

And then on some rare occasions, on those special film shoots when the atmosphere is charged with a special kind of magic, filming can just go swimmingly, as soft and peaceful as a summer breeze through the cedars.

Sunday was the former. Yeah, very much the former category. By the end of the shoot, you'd be forgiven for thinking that some kind of malevolent god had taken great umbrage with our faces and decided to pummel us with windy fists. And sand.

The crew receives much buffage courtesy of the wind.

Did I mention it was gruelling? We could have sold the behind-the-scenes footage as a survivalist documentary. John Hurt could have narrated it, mostly with the repeated phrase 'ooh, that looks gruelling'. If the following blog reads like a chapter from Heart of Darkness, it's because filming the end of Marojin was a rotter.

<![CDATA[A Film Begins To Develop ~ The 'Marojin' shoot continues]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/18/A-Film-Begins-To-Develop-The-Marojin-shoot-continues/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/18/A-Film-Begins-To-Develop-The-Marojin-shoot-continues/ 20 March 10 The best laid plans of mice and men oft come a cropper, so the saying almost goes, and the production schedule was already beginning to look a little peaky around the gills.

The first week’s curtailed beach excursion had left us with a rather ample ‘to do’ list, and plenty to do over the next couple of days. Most of the film, in actual fact. Thus it is, thus it was, thus it has always been. Thus.

The first weekend was expended filming inserts - the awkward minutiae, those tiny cogs that power the machine – and all we really had was a ragtag bunch of disjointed shots. Cutting that lot together would look totally mental, like that pre-cog girl from Minority Report having a ‘Nam flashback. So although our second shoot was pretty daunting, it was also somewhat of a relief to shoot more fulsome material

<![CDATA[First Marojin Footage in the Can]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/16/First-Marojin-Footage-in-the-Can/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/16/First-Marojin-Footage-in-the-Can/ 15 March 10 Don't you just love it when the weather goes your way and likewise hate it when it doesn't?

Well, we experienced the ups and downs of both this weekend whilst shooting on location 13th and 14th March.

Ethan and Sarah pose for their Polaroid Moment

The particular weather we needed, was a nice sunny day, but more spring than summer. The setting was for a young couple out on a date together at a beach.

Cue lots of Kodak moments, well Polaroid moments in this case.

The initial work went great driving round, cramped in the back of a vintage car trying to get p.o.v footage, lens flares and keep modern life out of the viewfinder.

But later on, down at the shore there was an unexpected kick back to the good luck weather.

<![CDATA[You had to kill a dog. And that's why you're late?]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/15/You-had-to-kill-a-dog-And-that-s-why-you-re-late/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/15/You-had-to-kill-a-dog-And-that-s-why-you-re-late/ 04 March 10 I've avidly read Paul's short, exploratory stageplays and was blown away by the performed reading given in London yesterday 3rd March 2010.

The plays (3 of them) are based around a feature script called 'Redhand' about the last days of an aging Irish Terrorist seeking redepmtion where there is none. A script which Paul himself has used the phrase 'highly stylised uber destruction' to describe it's ending.

The plays were written for Paul to explore the characters and their lives, long before we see them as old men in the film.

If you want to know more about the reading, see my previous post 'Pink Confetti' Reading in London.

Read on to see what I thought and view some photos.

<![CDATA[Stop! It's Scammertime]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/13/Stop-It-s-Scammertime/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/13/Stop-It-s-Scammertime/ 26 February 10 Every so often when traversing the glorious commercial connectivity of the internets, you get a brief reminder that sharks lurk and drift in the shadows beneath the browser chrome.

We had one of those occasions recently when looking to hire a location for a production. I should mention at this point, that if someone asks for a deposit upfront via Moneygram or Western Union transfer, it's a scam.

19th Century Scammer Gregor MacGregor

Scammers really aren't anything new. The image above is a related fragment from the scam of an early 19th century scumbag, Gregor MacGregor.

In 1820, Greg had the profitable idea of making himself a prince of a fictitious country, Poyais.

Well, why not eh?

He then set about conning people into buying shares of land, some of whom (about 240) took the voyage to settle this fertile central american land of plenty.

180 of 240 optimistic settlers died once reaching their destination, finding nothing but jungle and fever. Greg made a lot of money off the back of peoples optimism, and then snuck off to France.

What we encountered was far less dramatic and likely perpetrated by people less fortunate than ourselves (certainly less than the privelaged military status of Gregor MacGregor allowed).

Still, that doesn't mean we can't string them along and have a little fun, now does it ;)

Read on for the fun part.

<![CDATA['Marojin' Roles Cast]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/14/Marojin-Roles-Cast/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/14/Marojin-Roles-Cast/ 20 February 10 Ethan Jackson, Keith Chanter and Sarah Gargett accept roles in Graeme Beech's short film.

As previously mentioned, we had a really positive response for this film and a great audition over at Newcastle's Lit & Phil.

We really enjoyed the sessions and were very impressed with everyone who took the time out to read for us.

This made making decisions tough, so read on to find out more about the final cast.

<![CDATA['Pink Confetti' Reading in London]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/12/Pink-Confetti-Reading-in-London/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/12/Pink-Confetti-Reading-in-London/ 19 February 10 Click here to read the follow up ~ 'You had to kill a dog. And that's why you're late?'

What do you do when the powers that be (bee see) like your writing, but refuse to make your movie film?

Paul has been rather prolific in his penmanship lately. And I love being greeted in my overflowing inbox by one of his succinctly subjected emails.

It's the attachment that has my attention, the sweet-sweet juicy bit. Paul's dark, emotive and violence stained literary muffins.

Back at the end of August, it began this way. 'Stuff' said the subject line. 'Paul's First Stageplay 1.pdf' was the attachment. 'Time for a coffee' I thought.

After writing a full feature length called 'Redhand' and not having any luck getting it picked up, unfazed Paul set about writing three exploratory stage plays about younger versions of it's central characters.

And now, after months of work, some talented actors have taken the first of these three, called 'Pink Confetti' and prepared a rehearsed reading.

It's being performed in London a few weeks from now, and I can't wait to journey down and experience it!

So, that is how the beginning ends.

Read on for the full press release from Producer Katherine Beresford.

And I'll let you know about my trip and how things went.

<![CDATA['Marojin' Casting Closed]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/11/Marojin-Casting-Closed/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/11/Marojin-Casting-Closed/ 11 February 10 Thanks to all those who applied!

As always, the response we had was exceptional.

The final cast will be decided in a few weeks after an audition here in Newcastle.

<![CDATA[Casting Call for 'Marojin']]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/10/Casting-Call-for-Marojin/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/10/Casting-Call-for-Marojin/ 30 January 10 "Burn this and eat the ashes. Then it will begin."

Thus echo the inciting lines in Graeme Beech's new short film, a surreal psycho-drama dealing with grief, denial and the occult.

The dates for principal photography have been set in early March and we've been industrious behind the walls of the Spiderhouse these last few months to bring this to life.

The casting call is out and we've already had a great response, so thank you to everyone who's contacted us so far.

Please read on for full details

<![CDATA[Horrid Nostalgia – Like A Bellyful Of Honey]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/9/Horrid-Nostalgia-Like-A-Bellyful-Of-Honey/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/9/Horrid-Nostalgia-Like-A-Bellyful-Of-Honey/ 18 January 10 Against my better judgement, I recently journeyed the rather dubious world of old-school games console emulation.

Essentially, this required poking around the Ugliest Web Sites Imaginable™ this side of Hades.  Imagine a Ukrainian website about Lego... crashing angrily ... and then imploding into the very bowels of the internet.

And all of this just to dig out the video games of my youth.  Shudder and wince.

How for Now?

Okay, here's a quick 'How 2' for those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about:

All you need to know is that there are some very nerdy places on the internet with a PC emulator for every old video game and console that history has wisely forgotten.

I suggest you read on and then do likewise...

<![CDATA[2010: The Year We Make Contact?]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/8/2010-The-Year-We-Make-Contact/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/8/2010-The-Year-We-Make-Contact/ 01 January 10 Welcome one and all to a new decade, hopefully one that is filled with creativitiy, suspense, thrills, spills, terror, laughter, excitement and fun!

As the snow drifts down and piles ever higher, we continue to sculpt and craft plans and ideas for the first part of the year.

The passing of previous annum seemed a slow and difficult event in the lives of everyone we know (probably due to the recession) and we're fit to burst with the pressure of getting some films made.

So read on to see what's currently on the development slate...

<![CDATA[Supermojo Music Video Part 1]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/7/Supermojo-Music-Video-Part-1/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/7/Supermojo-Music-Video-Part-1/ 28 November 09 I knew it! I knew it! However many balloons you think you need, get twice as many!

That goes even if you are buying 500 hundred. And if people laugh at you on the phone when you say the words, 'I think we need one thousand balloons' ignore them.

However, 500 balloons still make a strong impression.

Why am I going on about balloons so much? Last weekend we shot the first part of a music video for an unsigned Nottingham band called 'Supermojo'.

It involved filling the stage with balloons.

Everything all came about very quickly on Monday, an idea was forged and changed, and changed again, but we managed well and had a great night shooting.

Special thanks to Polestar Studios who catered for our late night, inflated rubber bag escapade.

Here are a few photos of the shoot.

<![CDATA[New Site and Updates]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/5/New-Site-and-Updates/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/5/New-Site-and-Updates/ 30 October 09 After a long time away from the old internet, we're back with a snazzy new website. I'm sure you'll agree that it's a vast improvement over the previous 'temporary' one.

Have a look around and check out all the new info we've added. Let's see... what's new since you were last here...

Well, you may be interested to hear that our last couple of official short films, Pini Banini and Departure, are currently being submitted to a bunch of film festivals.

Gone are the days when we were happy enough to invite cast, crew, friends and family to our private screenings – we thought it about time to send some of these babies out into the real world.

<![CDATA[Pray for the New Spiderhouse Design]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/4/Pray-for-the-New-Spiderhouse-Design/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/4/Pray-for-the-New-Spiderhouse-Design/ 29 October 09 It's been languishing in development hell as the recent workload has been enormous, but it's finally online!

There's still some more content to be added, like trailers and artwork, and it needs a little finessing but it's pretty much all here.

I've been researching film posters for a while with the aim of designing them for our own projects. I really loved the old 70's classics from studios like Fox and and Paramount. One that really caught my eye was the poster for Rosemary's Baby (1968) by Stephen Frankfurt.

It's this poster which was a source of much inspiration for the new look of the website, and it's no surprise it captured my imagination, being designed by a man schooled by William Bernbach, a mammoth figure in the history of advertising whose innovative approaches created a revolution in the 1960's.

<![CDATA[Simox Concept Art Exhibited @ Design Event]]> http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/6/Simox-Concept-Art-Exhibited-Design-Event/ http://spiderhouse.co.uk/blog/6/Simox-Concept-Art-Exhibited-Design-Event/ 16 October 09 We've been lucky enough to display some concept art as part of this years Design Event for the 'Uses of Intelligence' exhibition.

The art is for a project in development called 'SIMOX'. Originally a short, but now feature length, the film follows the final days of a monolithic city which has a society based entirely on surveillance culture.

The work is being displayed at Washington Arts Centre until 21st November 2009.

It's this theme of surveillance, and more importantly surveillance devices which tied in nicely with the exhibition.

The element which seems to ignite peoples imaginations about the film, is the cctv camera on six insectile legs, which crawl over the city to spy on it's inhabitants.