Posted by: michellemuldoon | September 7, 2017

Oaxaca Film Festival

My thanks to the Oaxaca Film Festival for recognizing The Baby Pool with an official selection to the 2017 festival as well as a nomination for the Connection Award.

 

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Posted by: michellemuldoon | June 30, 2017

Last Stand Needs A Crowd

Making a film is always an ambitious act of creativity, but making a genre film, like a Western, is an ambitious act on steroids.

What makes a genre film so much tougher are the necessities like costumes, guns, bullets, safety personnel, a horse, and set decor. All these are issues on a regular film, but with genre you can’t rely on what you have or what’s in your cast’s closet. Genre is all about world building because the world does not exist around you.

We’re on Day 4 of our LAST STAND TO NOWHERE CROWDFUNDING CAMPAIGN. If you haven’t been through this process then let me tell you it’s tough. It’s tough asking people for money. It stretches your networking skills. It pushes your resiliency. All these lessons and I’m not even a week in.

Am I complaining? No. What I see in what we’ve accomplished so far is incredible generosity, kindness and, in the case of the fan art we’ve already received, incredible creativity.

It also reinforces exactly how much I want to make this film. It clarifies my vision for my characters and what I want for my team. And most of all, it has forced me beyond my comfort zone; past the self-financed, small crew mentality I’ve had and into one that dares to dream bigger and in technicolour.

I coached Senior Girls High School Volleyball for years and I always used to tell my teams that they needed to break their comfort zone and dare to find the greatness within; that comfort never equaled growth or the journey that would result in achieving their goals.

With Last Stand to Nowhere I’m breaking my comfort zone. I’m daring to create something on a grander scale. I have a dream that this is a stepping stone to something that exceeds the space it currently exists in.

When you give voice to a dream, it becomes a goal. Some incredibly talented people have joined the journey to make this goal happen. There’s more than enough room for you, too.

Please take a stand with us.. and support Last Stand to Nowhere.

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Posted by: michellemuldoon | June 26, 2017

Last Stand to Nowhere Update

Last Stand to Nowhere

(Jenn MacLean-Angus, Chelah Horsdal, Julie Lynn Mortensen as photographed by WendyD Photography)

It has been a while since I’ve blogged but as things are moving along, I thought it was time to share what the Last Stand Team has been up to.

We are now up and running on three social media platforms:

We’ve applied for financing through BravoFact and the Telus 100K program and this week, we will be on Indiegogo to crowdfund the film as well. There is no guarantees with funding agencies. The competition is tough so crowdfunding is absolutely necessary. It’s actually built into the budget for the funding agencies. We want to show them that we can partner to make top notch content.

Why go to all the trouble when we could just as easily make something less intricate? The answer is simple; Wonder Woman. If you follow me on twitter and instagram you’ve probably already noticed I love the latest incarnation of the Amazon Princess. It’s bold, strong, clear in its message and unapologetic about the power of the main character.  Wonder Woman is not clouded in romance, or having to prop up the male sidekick. (He does that very well on his own, thank you.) People are loving it, and I believe they will also love the women of Last Stand to Nowhere.

I hope you’ll follow us on our journey and see enough to convince you this is a project worthy of your support.

Our cast is stellar. Our crew is first class. And most of all, our timing is now.

 

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Posted by: michellemuldoon | May 3, 2017

Indie Film Tribe Interview

Indie Film Tribe

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of chatting with Angela Matemotja of Indie Film Tribe. Angela and I are on the same page regarding the importance of community, especially for writers.

Being interviews by Angela is really more like having a friendly chat over coffee. She’s passionate about film, and about helping people, and it couldn’t be a friendlier experience.

My thanks go out to Angela for the experience, and for everything she’s doing for the independent film community.

Check out INDIE FILM TRIBE and our INTERVIEW. I hope there’s information in this that will help you on your journey.

For the catalogue of Indie Film Tribe Interviews, hit the link and check them out on iTunes.

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Posted by: michellemuldoon | March 26, 2017

Puppet Killer Fundraiser

Puppet Killer

 

The Team behind PUPPET KILLER needs your help. If you love horror, and you love the passion that independent filmmakers bring to the genre then please join the team behind the film for a fundraiser on April 2nd at the Beaumont Studios in Vancouver.

Finishing a film can be harder than filming it. When you have unexpected legal bills on top of post-production, the mountain can seem daunting. Puppet Killer is counting on the killer community of horror and independent film fans in Vancouver to help get them to the top.

Tickets are $40 and include your first drink. There’s a cash bar, appetizers, live music, and a silent auction that includes:

Guitars
A Head Shot Package
Actor’s Taping Services
Collectible Horror Figures
Belly Dancing Performance
Custom Foot Orthotics
A Demo Reel
Script Coverage Services
A Nail Salon Package
… and much more.

Join members of the cast and crew of Puppet Killer on the evening of April 2nd and help the film reach the finish line.

If you don’t live in Vancouver, please consider buying a ticket in support.

Thanks very much!

PUPPET KILLER FUNDRAISER:

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Posted by: michellemuldoon | February 28, 2017

Shiny Polished Scripts

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There are times when writing is difficult. I’m not talking about writer’s block, but the issue of time. Time is a struggle for me. Between working to pay the bills and working to make film there is sometimes little time to make words into sentences, and those sentences into a story. So what do I do, not write at all?

I turn my attention to making something old into something new. I do a polish on an old script. Does that sound like a writing cop-out? It might but not really. The more we write, the better we get. I believe I’m a better writer today than I was when I wrote some of my screenplays three or four years ago. Why not update the script with my shiny new skills and make it something I feel like I can stand behind today.

I recently did that with a feature script and now I’m organizing, with an actor friend, a script reading for a local director/producer. The script still resonates and it was worth taking another look at. I love this particular script, and I’m excited to share the script and the evening with some highly talented people.

I also cleaned up a short screenplay that I have always loved but not done much with. It just made the official selection list at the first festival I entered it in. It seems I might need to enter Masquerade in a few more events. That’s the bonus of looking back at your old portfolio. You don’t know what you have until you look at it with fresh eyes.

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Life doesn’t need to feel like it’s closing in on your writing time. You can keep honing those skills by polishing an old story into a shiny new and exciting vehicle. It takes less time, it stretches your writing muscles and helps your story analysis skills stay sharp.

Don’t give in to the time crunch, or give up on feeling productive. A script is never really done until the cameras roll, so feel free to play on an old canvas. You’ll be surprised at how much sharper you feel, and how much better that old script can be.

 

Posted by: michellemuldoon | February 22, 2017

It Begins: Last Stand to Nowhere

 

Last Stand to Nowhere

(Banner courtesy Michelle Lamberson)

March marks the one year anniversary of the first screening of Chaos Management and begins the journey of the next film, Last Stand to Nowhere. Last Stand is an all-female re-imagining of Gunfight at the OK Corral.

Why a Western, and why make a female Western on the heels of productions that have had varying degrees of success or lack of?

I grew up watching spaghetti westerns on Sundays, often with my father. I loved the Enio Morricone soundtrack and the cinematography but more than anything I loved the lesson that, regardless of your moral fiber, there comes a time when everyone is forced to take a stand. Sometimes that lesson is a product of circumstance, and sometimes it’s a conscious decision made when a person is forced to a point where turning back is not an option.

I love action films, including westerns, but let’s face it guys have all the fun in those films. The story is told through the male view screen about characters men find interesting and can connect with in some way. Let me say it bluntly, that sucks. It sucks that women are either Madonnas or Whores. It sucks that when the chips are down, women have no influence on the outcome. It sucks that women are satellite characters and are ultimately reliant on the male hero bailing them out.

Women often struggle to connect with male heroes because they aren’t us. I’m done with that, and from the look of the amount of women who are interested in this project, I’m not alone.

My filmmaking has mostly been about perspective and how it influences connection. I want to see what shifting a key point of perspective does to our connection to an iconic story; in this case one of the most iconic testosterone-driven stories of the Old West.

Over the next couple of months I’ll be unveiling who has come aboard as we prep social media landing sites and a crowdfunding campaign. I think you’ll like what you see. At least I hope you do enough to make a donation. The team hopes to leverage these efforts for a strong BravoFact funding application.  By the time Chaos Management is close to finishing its festival run, our goal is to have Last Stand to Nowhere going to camera.

Stick around for what’s to come. It’s going to be a fun ride.

Pistol with holster and belt with bullets

 

Posted by: michellemuldoon | February 16, 2017

Malibu West Awards: Chaos Management Wins

The Malibu West Awards, newly christened for 2017 as the West Coast Film Festival, is a division of the Port Hueneme International Film Festival. I am so pleased to share that Chaos Management has been awarded two awards in this past session; The Chaplin Award for Best Writer of a Short Film, and The Chaplin Award for Best Music Score of a Short Film awarded to our composer, The Land of Deborah.

Thank you to everyone at Malibu West. You believe in what we’re doing and that means more than I can describe.

West Coast Film Festival

West Coast Film Festival

Posted by: michellemuldoon | January 31, 2017

Writer to Watch: Ellen Chauvet

 

 

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There are people who say they support the Arts and then there are people who put their money, their heart, and their talent into supporting creativity. Ellen Chauvet is that person. Not only has she invested in two independent feature films but Ellen’s own work, When Darkness Falls, can be found in Kindle and Amazon’s Create Space.

I met Ellen Chauvet when we both joined the production team behind the independent feature film, Puppet Killer, now in post production. Ellen is an Executive Producer on the project, while I’m a member of the Production Team. I was impressed with her commitment to support the vision and passion of Director/Producer Lisa Ovies and as I got to know her better I understood that Ellen’s advocacy of independent film comes from her own passion for the creative journey.

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(Ellen Chauvet and Anne Rice)

Ellen fell in love with the novels of Ann Rice as the Lestat stories reached the height of popularity. She drifted from the genre until a friend introduced her to Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  What hooked her was the character Angel; a vampire that lives with the constant internal battle between good and evil. This would become the theme to Ellen’s own writing.

It’s a constant internal battle she sees in all of us.  Genre storytelling allows for the exploration of very human failings in a manner that allows for a wider spectrum of tests and revelations.

“When Darkness Falls” is the first of a book series called The Vampire Redemption Series. The story took shape as Ellen dealt with personal loss and health challenges. Once Ellen found her health and her footing, the journey to turn a rough first draft into a polished novel found solid ground, and set the foundation for what should be a three or four book series.

When Darkness Falls follows Lexie, a young woman who finds out she’s a vampire executioner in a long line of executioners.  She’s as human as her prey is inhuman, and her struggles are reflective of all of ours. This first book is set in Paris and southern France. The second in the series will take place in Scotland.

Ellen Chauvet is that rare creature; a person who is not only creative, but supports and nurtures creativity in others.

Get ahead of the curve and check out When Darkness Falls and fall in love with Ellen Chauvet like I did.

ellenchauvet_2015

Posted by: michellemuldoon | January 27, 2017

Introduction to Screenwriting Workshop

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On February 4th I will be teaching another one day Introduction to Screenwriting Workshop for the good people at Raindance Vancouver. Why do I teach this course and why do I think it’s an excellent first step? Here’s why…

Writing something, anything, is easy; writing a good spec screenplay is hard. Like many people, I started out thinking it would be a piece of cake; read a couple of screenplays, buy the software, let the creative brilliance flow. But here’s the thing, it isn’t that easy. There are rules; do’s and don’t of formatting and story structure, for instance. There’s a craft to the page that speaks to every member of a film production team, and a creativity that speaks to every member of the cast.

My workshop is practical. It provides the participant with a concrete list of actionables that have to be a part of your screenplay. You walk out with a breakdown of what makes good structure, formatting, character introductions, dialogue and scene composition. It’s only one day so we go straight to the important points around these topics.

Is this going to turn you into Paul Haggis? No. Is this going to give you a great foundation to start you on the path to telling the stories you want to tell on screen? Yes.

Here’s what a couple of people have said about this workshop:

Passionate, informative, organized, inclusive, clear, concise and captivating. Great communication, interaction, discussion and ability to field all kinds of questions while keeping the class on track. So glad I took this class. A wealth of information.

— M.E. Bond

Thank you for making the process so clean and specific. I loved the examples of “real” films to help understand certain concepts better. Your energy and positivity were contagious.

— T. Gillis

If you are an actor wanting to tell your own stories, or a production team member wanting to understand more about the work you’re given to break down in pre-production, take this course.

After all, everyone wants their work to stand out in the crowd.

screenplays

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