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Thursday, October 27, 2005

Austin Film Festival Recap

The day Stomp! Shout! Scream! premiered at the Austin Film Festival, I got an email from the Deep Ellum Film Festival that the film had been accepted to screen there. The festival is November 17-23, 2005. Check the website for the exact schedule in the next week.

Totaling up the festival submissions, Stomp! Shout! Scream! is 0 for 10 outside of Texas and 2 for 2 inside the Lone Star State.

To recap the Austin Film Festival, here’s my film maker blog from the AFF web site:

AFF Sun 10/16
Hello. Jay Edwards here to ramble about Stomp! Shout! Scream! and the Austin Film Festival. First I'll have to thank everyone at the festival, especially Chris Holland, for liking my film and offering to host its world premiere. Thanks for reading.

AFF Tue 10/18
I think I'm ready for this world premiere. Between now and Saturday, here's my schedule:
Wednesday: drive 14 hours, Atlanta to Austin.
Thursday: get interviewed at 5:00 AM on the Austin NBC morning show, sleep all day, and try to not get too drunk that night.
Friday: Juggle friends and family flying into town and try to sound like I belong on the "Comedy Writing for TV" panel at 1:45 PM. Oh, and show Stomp! Shout! Scream! to strangers for the first time ever at 10:00 PM. And try to not get too drunk afterward.
Saturday: Attempt to show up on time for the Writing Sci-Fi/Horror Panel at 10:45 AM.
After that, I think I'm done for a while and I can hide in dark movie theaters and watch movies.

AFF Thur 10/20
I'm in an awkward place. Somewhere between "5:00 AM TV interview" and "able to check into hotel." It's just after "14 hours in a car yesterday" and "no sleep." My delirium turns to elation when Stomp! Shout! Scream! gets its first review.

From the Austin Chronicle:
Edwards' loving homage to the short-lived beach-party-by-way-of-horror-film genre of the mid-Sixties does it better than American International Pictures ever did, with canny nods along the way to Them, Jaws, The Horror of Party Beach, and Roger Corman's own B-movie update Humanoids From the Deep. The arrival of an all-girl garage rock band in the quaint seaside community of Merriville Island coincides with a sudden rash of sandy mayhem that may be the result of the dreaded skunk-ape, which leaves behind a hideous odor to match its rampant carnage. On the trail of the beast are a trio of semicompetent cops ("It just don't make no sense – what kind of a homicidal maniac would do something like this?") and the requisite smart guy from the local college, who's final utterances remind us to forget about the skies, already, what we really need to be watching are the tides. It's nearly as much fun as an episode of Hullabaloo, snappy bouffants, earnest braniacs, hippy-hippy-shake, and all.

AFF Sat 10/22
The Stomp! Shout! Scream! premiere screening went pretty well last night.

Chris Holland from the festival and I both felt a sellout was coming from the way folks were talking, but the theater was about just 60% full. That's a little disappointing at first, but then I realized that was just due to our expectations. Promoting a film on the festival circuit is a marathon, not a one-time thing. There will be plenty of opportunities to get the film seen.

The film got lots of laughter throughout and a really nice reception from moviegoers afterward. Thanks to everyone who came out to see it. I personally went right out and guzzled beer with family and friends until the bars closed at 2 AM. That made it a little hard to get out to the panels this morning, but I made it. Now I'll nap and plan out some movie watching for the rest of my time in Austin.

AFF Tue 10/25
Unfortunately, I will not be at the screening tonight. The cartoon sweat shop demanded my presence back in Atlanta. Chris and the festival have concocted a little something in my absence. It's way funnier that I'd be at the screening.

Stomp! Shout! Scream! has gotten some scathingly bad reviews on the AFF web site. It's upsetting at first, of course. And I hate that it might affect attendance at the festival. But if EVERYONE liked the movie, it would be a total failure. I'm not trying to make "E.T." here. If you don't get it in the first 10 minutes, then, yeah, you'll probably hate it and that's fine with me. I know there's an audience out there that does get it.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Austin in 1 week, indie film Marketing

Just in case you haven’t heard: Stomp! Shout! Scream! will have its WORLD PREMIERE at 10:00 PM, on Friday, October 21, 2005 at the Landmark Dobie Theater as part of the Austin Film Festival. The film will screen again at 9:30 PM at the Dobie on Tuesday, October 25. Visit the festival website for ticket info.

There’s one last bit of business left in order to call Stomp! Shout! Scream! really done. The end credits have not been put on the final master tape, but that will happen this weekend. As with most indie films, the credit list is long, but not because there’s tons of crew. The actual film crew is just 20 or so people. There’s just lots and lots of people to thank. And I wanted to let the entire theme song play out since Jennifer and Catfight! wrote and recorded such a fantastic song, complete with hysterical breakdown in the middle. Film festivals usually have film makers do Q & A after screenings, so viewers are usually obliged to stick around through an entire credit sequence. This film’s is pretty long, so to spruce it up a bit, I had renown Tiki artist Derek Yaniger do some character illustrations to intersperse amidst the usual list of names and titles. He’s incredible and the illustrations he did for Stomp! Shout! Scream! are absolutely perfect.

Looming just after the movie’s premiere will be working to put together the DVD. I have almost 10 hours of behind the scenes footage, so it will be a monumental undertaking.

Marketing update: The posters will be ready for Austin and they have turned out beautifully thanks to Buffi at Tweet Design. I splurged on full size movie posters, 27” x 41”. It’s one more thing that will make this low budget monster thing seem like a real movie. The stickers just came in today. Postcards and new business cards are scheduled to arrive the day before I drive to Austin.

I’m constantly praising all the folks who have worked on Stomp! Shout! Scream! and they deserve an enormous amount of credit for making the film so much more than I ever could. Stomp! Shout! Scream! has been incredibly lucky to have such a support “staff” of people who like the project and are willing to work hard and have some fun. That was the plan all along and getting into The Austin Film Festival is proof of lots of people’s good work. I’m sure it will pay off on Friday night.

Sunday, October 2, 2005

sound mix, color correction for Premiere in Austin

Just in case you haven’t heard:  Stomp! Shout! Scream! will have its world premiere on October 21, 2005 as part of the Austin Film Festival and Screenwriters Conference.  Visit the festival website for tickets and screening info.

Another part of film making is trying to get people to come see your film.  Newspapers and other press outlets are the best resource for letting people know the details.  It makes me feel like a pimp, selling my product, but I spent the last week working on press releases, credit lists, a “statement of the director”, formatting news articles, etc., to put in the first official press kit.  All that stuff is on the Media page on

Post-production on the film took a couple of major leaps forward this week.  It’s at this stage that you go to the experts and hope they can perform those miracles you always hear about.  Director of Photography Evan Lieberman and I supervised the final color correction in Cinefilm’s Spirit transfer suite. Due to the usual time and money constraints of indie film making, we had to shoot several scenes at the wrong time of day.  Colorist Ron Anderson worked his magic and fixed all the problem scenes, plus greatly improved several scenes that were already looking good.  Now Stomp! Shout! Scream! looks absolutely fantastic.  I can’t say enough about Evan, the extremely talented crew he put together, and Ron’s expertise that combined to get this film looking as good as it does.

Michael and Juan at Soapbox Studios put in a Herculean effort over the weekend to finish the sound mix for the movie.  Once again, there’s nothing like going to the experts and getting them to work their magic.  Everyone involved in the sound mix commented about how we picked one of the hardest possible locations to get quality sound—- the beach, at night.  One long dialog scene has waves, a generator, and RF interference competing with the actor’s lines.  Michael was able to EQ the voices just right and make the scene, and the whole movie, sound better than I would have ever imagined.

Maybe they’re just being nice, but everyone who has helped on the film says that it was great fun to work on.  I started this whole project to have fun with the creative people I know, not because I wanted more work.

Principle photography started one year ago this week. I never thought it would take this long or be this hard, but seeing the color-corrected images finally married up to a pristine sound mix sure feels good. I am really, really looking forward to Austin.

Here's 3 shots taken from Day One of shooting, one year ago today.