Adventures in the Pacific Northwest

 

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Rene and I are visiting friends in the Pacific Northwest (or PNW for those in the know. I was not in the know and was very confused. I thought everyone was saying that they were “pwnd.”) We’re collecting footage and images for an episode of “Rene & Curtis Get Lost… In Portland,” but here are a few sneak peaks.

More later when I’m not rushing out of a hotel room.

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See you soon.

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Filed under rene, travel

We’re Doing A Show!

Holiday Gem Ad Art

Rene and I are doing a song and dance review for the holidays! It’s performing at the Gem Theater in Garden Grove and tickets go on sale this week. This is the first full musical review I’ve done in nearly twenty years! It’s been so long that I actually pulled a muscle in my foot as I was practicing at home.

I’m falling apart.

If you enjoyed the old Andy Williams Christmas Specials in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s (yes, that’s a tiny Donny Osmond) then this show is right up your alley. We’ve been told that tickets will sell fast GO GET THEM NOW!

I know, Halloween has barely past and it’s Christmas already.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Filed under acting, actor, actor stuff, holidays

Fun Video Friday – Carl Poppa

Fun-Video-Friday

 

This past year has been a focus on creativity for Rene and I. With the successful roll out of Fun Size Horror and the various personal, friend and professional projects we’ve been working on we’ve been able to get back to doing the kinds of things that we not only enjoy but the kinds of things that energize us and that ends up spilling over into other aspects of our lives.

Today’s fun video is not new, it’s a couple months old and comes from the folks that do Bad Lip Reading on YouTube. It’s a song that was part of their Walking (and Talking) Dead series. I stumbled onto it again recently through a flurry of Facebook posts. The song is funny and if you’re a Walking Dead fan then it is even better, but what I find remarkable is that I really like the song, like, a lot. Sure most of the lyrics are silly, but it took a lot of talent and skill to get this together.  And it’s a hit! The song is available on iTunes and is shockingly catchy and easy to dance to.

The running thread between our year of creativity and this video is that it just took a little creativity to make something really cool and there are very few barriers to that as long as you’re willing to put in the work. So enjoy the video and then go out and work on that thing you’ve been meaning to do. It’s time.

See you next time.

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November 7, 2014 · 11:01 am

Election Day – It’s important, right?

Photo: www.democraticunderground.com

Photo: www.democraticunderground.com

I grew up in the 80’s and 90’s when “getting out the vote” was a big deal. A huge deal, really. The youth was getting pushed/energized in a very general way to “make our voices heard.” And it worked! When I was first voting it was a topic of conversation among friends. We’d discuss our understanding of the different things we were voting for and massive guilt trips were laid on those that didn’t take the time to get to their polling place. Admittedly I grew up in an upper middle class suburb where my biggest concerns were what my plans were going to be for the weekend, but based on the actual numbers from the day it looks like my little circle of friends weren’t the only ones feeling this way.

MTV was a big pusher and commercials starring celebrities popular with our demographic all encouraged us to get out to the polls. That stuck with me. It still sticks with me. I used to vote because it was what I was “supposed to do” but now, as I’m getting older, I feel like it’s something that I have to do, and I mean that with the utmost sincerity and gravatas.

I don’t like to get too political on my public forums, but there are several issues that are important enough to me that they get past the embargo:

  • Net Neutrality
  • Female Equality
  • Marriage Equality

You’ve seen my posts about them. They are important to me. They are things that require a voice in government.

You probably have things that are important to you too, things that also require a voice in government. This is one of those times in history when we’ll be able to look back and see the effects of our vote. This is a time of change and upheaval. Times that will match up in the history books to the 1860’s, 1940’s and the late 1960’s. Things are happening and, while you may not have direct control over every nuance of what’s going on, you do have a say.

Vote. It’s important.

Can’t find your polling place? HERE’S HELP

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Filed under activism, net neutrality, politics

Net Neutrality – The Fight is Still On

Photo: Act.Watchdog.Net

Photo: Act.Watchdog.Net

The internet is the most powerful information tool ever invented – in the whole history of mankind.

Think about that, this is not a small achievement.

The printing press revolutionized the world and it was limited to locality, expertise, specialized equipment and literacy in a time when none of the things on that list were guaranteed. In our modern times even people in developing nations have mobile phones and wifi. The internet is the great equalizer and it has been the backbone of social change and culture for well over a decade now…

…and this tool is in danger.

I’m not going to spout conspiracy theories or rage about corporate greed or the politicization of information, I want to speak to you as a fellow consumer and  user who prefers to have a freedom of choice and fair playing field. The internet we know and enjoy is in danger and needs us, as consumers, to stick up for it.

This New York Times article details one of the new proposals from the FCC that looks like progress but is really just a re-packaging of what the current ISP’s wanted in the first place.

Read it and contact your representatives and VOTE!

EDIT:

Reader Scott K. provided this link to Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. It is a great explanation of what is going on with the law of the internet. And it’s funny.

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Filed under activism, advocate, politics

Fun Size Horror HAPPY HALLOWEEN! – More Shorts and A Little History

FunSized_Keyart_color CROP

EDIT: This was originally written for yesterday, but it looks like it didn’t get posted, so I’ve made some adjustments and am posting today. Apologies to my friends who’s shorts aired yesterday that this blog wasn’t a portal for people to see your stuff. -C.A.

The shameless self-promotion train continues today as we have five spook-tacular shorts premiering today: Fun Size Horror web site

Since neither Rene or I have any shorts playing today (although they are absolutely worth checking out, it’s a good mix today) I thought it might be nice to give a little history as to how Rene and I got involved in this project in the first place.

This whole project is the brainchild of my friend Zeke Pinheiro. He’s a director/writer/editor and you’ve probably seen his and my names together before particularly if you remember a horror film that we were trying to get made called The Pom Pom Massacre. The one thing we ran into, time and time again, was a lack of ability to get the film funded. Even after a successful Kickstarter to help get the development funds we needed, we just couldn’t lock the financing down. This happened for a few projects in a row and it started to feel like we were always looking for money and never actually making anything.

Last November I got a call from Zeke while I was on set for a commercial. He said that he wanted to make 31 short films for Halloween and release one every day in October. They would all be self-financed so we wouldn’t need to lock down funding. He and I know too many talented people, if we could just find a few that wouldn’t mind helping us out we’d probably be able to do it. That being said, I was a bit flabbergasted. But, it sounded like a hell of a lot of fun and I’m always up for a challenge so I told him I was in. After that he reached out to Mali Elfman and Michael May, two other friends of ours in the industry. Together we started building a plan.  That plan was to reach out to other filmmakers we know and see if they were into the idea of:

  • Creating a short film at 2 minutes or less. (This idea changed later.)
  • It would be self-produced and funded. (We had no money to offer anyone.)
  • The creator maintaining all rights and intellectual property.
  • They licensing us the right to air it through the end of 2014 on whatever distribution we can get, even if it’s just our own YouTube page, and have the option to participate in a bigger release if they choose.

Simple plans with a simple goal: get projects into production and get them seen by the public.

Thankfully a LOT of filmmakers we picking up what we were putting down and we were pleased to have more projects pitched than we were even able to use!

This is the first of what could be an annual event. So many great little shorts have come out of this and there is so much talent that Rene and I have had the pleasure of working with now. I look forward to how those relationships grow. I hope you’ve enjoyed the shorts this year. Check out the Facebook page and come to the public screening if you’re in L.A. on November 2nd.

See you next time!

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Filed under acting, Andelon, awesome, business, filmmaking, Halloween, making movies, storytelling, the future, video, YouTube

Fun Size Horror Day 3 – Double Feature Wednesday! Home & Bloody Mary

BM 8Home 3

So much happening today at Fun Size Horror! Today is the big day for Rene and I since the short I wrote and directed, Bloody Mary, is up and the short she stars in, Home, is up as well. Wednesday is Double Feature day, so all of the hosting sites are showing two shorts. We are friends with just about everyone involved int todays posts so I hope you’ll check them all out…

But especially Home and Bloody Mary!

Home is the tale of a crumbling marriage and a fight that leads to the worst kind of homecoming.

Bloody Mary is a bit more personal. When my sister and I were kids I used to get a great deal of joy out of scaring her which, as I’m sure you can imagine, neither she or my parents were all that fond of. The worst thing I ever did was convince her that Bloody Mary lived in our bathroom mirror. This is that story.

Hope you enjoy them! Let me know what you think.

See you soon!

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Filed under actor, actor stuff, Andelon, behind the scenes, Bloody Mary, business, filmmaking, Fun Size Horror, making movies, rene, shameless self promotion, video, YouTube

Fun Size Horror Day 2 – Rene & I are in one today!

Rene Persephone Still

Big second day is here and there are six more shorts released! All of them can be seen at Fun Size Horror.com.

Persephone Curtis

However, I’d like to bring special attention to the short Persephone by Lisa J. Dooley. In it Rene and I are terrible rich people. Because it’s a short we’re not in it much, but hopefully a release of the outtakes will be put up somewhere because we had a LOT of fun on this shoot and there was some comedy gold that was, rightly, sent to the cutting room floor.

Go check it out and let me know what you think!

See you soon.

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Filed under actor stuff, Andelon, blatant plug, business, filmmaking, Fun Size Horror, making movies, rene, video, YouTube

It’s Fun Size Horror Week! MONDAY: The Journey Begins!

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Get ready for a week of posts all about Fun Size Horror, the micro-shorts project I’ve been working on this year. The posts are up and going to the Fun Size Horror website is probably the easiest way to be able to see them. There are links at the top of the page to each hoisting site and directly to the shorts themselves. Go head there now and check them out: Fun Size Horror.com

Shameless family promotion time: Rene is in the short When They Say You’re AloneShe is one of the cultists and she’s the one that has the close-up near the end.

Rene Cultist Close-Up

Shameless self promotion time: One of my former students, Aidan Flynn, is in Knock, Knock.

All the shorts that I’m involved with will be out Wednesday, but don’t wait – go check these out now! Each video is only up for 24 hours and then they are gone until after Halloween. Let me know what you think of them!

See you soon!

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Filed under business, filmmaking, Fun Size Horror, making movies, rene, video, YouTube

Fun Video Friday! Fun Size Horror Trailer

Fun-Video-Friday

It feels good to be getting back into the writing swing of things. Today’s Fun Video Friday is more shameless promotion about Fun Size Horror (have you liked the Facebook page yet?). Here’s the trailer, which features many of the shorts and you can even glimpse Rene a few times if you’re paying attention *wink*. Next Monday the shorts will be released, five per sponsor per day, for only 24 hours each until Halloween!

fUN-sIZE V9Exciting, right?

See you soon!

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Filed under actor stuff, Andelon, Bloody Mary, directing, filmmaking, Fun Size Horror, fun video friday, making movies, rene, video