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Thursday, April 27, 2006

Back on the road


Just heard from top producer Mark Forstater who I met last year. We talked about a feature version of Wimborne Road. Not a 90 minute version of the documentary we've already shot of course. But rather a massive scale up. A scale up to one of the biggest urban roads in the world - Broadway in New York.

Mark was the producer of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I like his catalogue of work. The variety is enormous, perhaps he is like me and sees interesting things in unusual places. He even dropped out of film altogether for the past few years.

He is still interested in producing the road movie documentary - but we need to find a presenter. Mark's ready to hit the phones and make it happen. But this presenter should probably be someone who is known in the US - but known as an outsider. They also need to be known for 'being interested in people'. Our list currently concentrates on people like:

  • Michael Palin
  • Eric Idle (who has Spamalot on Broadway)
  • Ricky Gervais
  • Billy Connelly

With other alternative candidates who don't exactly fit the stated criteria but who could shake up the mix:

  • Rudy Giuliani
  • Adam West (of Batman TV fame)
  • Sarah Michelle Gellar

Other candidates welcome from all blog readers. I want to give Mark a good list to go at!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The proposition


No, not the film "The Proposition".

What is your proposition

As I'm getting ready for Cannes that is my first job. I must really think about what I am offering. I mean sure, I want to get Circumference off the ground. But why would anyone want to meet me to talk about that? What is special about it? Is that all I am bringing?

No. Because I do rewrites as well. Is that it then? Still no - as I am at the forefront of exploring new audience interations with ideas such as 365films.

So what exactly is my proposition? Its the same as this blog - new ideas. In the spirit of that I've done a 'new idea' for telling people about it. You can see my Cannes proposition at TimClague.com I've tried to capture what I'm all about in the words on the page but also in the odd way of doing it.

My Cannes colleague Suki Singh also has a site. He is focussing purely on attracted co-production partners to 3 feature films in development and pre-production. So his site just sells that. It also matches his unique style.

Get this right first. Be clear on what you are 'selling'. To use a marketing term - what is your USP, your unique selling point. There will be a 1000 writers there. Why are you different?

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Sunday, April 23, 2006

I'm back


Okay then. I'm back. But a holiday isn't a holiday unless you see some films. Soon I must jump back into the main drive of the blog this month: how to prepare for Cannes, the latest news on Circumference and whats next for the sales training for writers and directors. Before then I must mention two films that I saw on my travels. Both were actually on the plane. I can't recommend Singapore airlines enough - but I hate people who bang on about that sort of thing so I'll stop there.

The first movie I'd like to talk about is called Sad Movie and hails from South Korea. Recent experience could convince us in the West that all Asian cinema is horror. This film is just as visually experimental but, like Circumference, is an alternative love story. I liked it because it proved an assumption I had - which was that a downbeat ending can in fact be far more romantic than a 'happy ever after' Hollywood-style ending. Imagine "Love Actually" if it was more daring. The website is a masterpiece as well but all in Korean.

The second movie challenged my thoughts on the film industry. Its called Free and Easy 16. And yes, its true, it is the 16th in a series of comedies. What was unusual was to have such a likeable central character. This seems a strange thing to say. Surely its a common aim to have a likeable central character? Well, yes, but don't we also try to give them a dark side, an edge, a past? Not in this film - pure nonsense from start to finish. Like a Marx Brothers film.

I always try to check out films from other cultures if I can. Its a great place for story dust and you can amaze producers and funders alike with your obscure knowledge of Free and Easy 16!

Everyone else was watching Narnia on the plane - you can see that anytime.