I’ve been pursuing a next project, even though I haven’t even started filming Treasure Hunt, let alone had any sort of success with it (I’m just that sort of guy; can’t help myself). It’s a period biopic about the Civil War era Jessie Rupert, the Angel of the Shenandoah. If half of what’s said about her is true, it seems criminal that no dramatization has been made about her life. She doesn’t even have a Wiki page!
I set out to contact people into the Civil War in the area (New Market, Virginia), but so far haven’t been developing any momentum. I did get in contact with someone who’s very interested in my Treasure Hunt movie, so much that they’re willing to consider making music for it and to travel all the way from Florida for a bit part. But no one in a position to move the project forward financially. Once I know about my level of success with Treasure Hunt, I may invest in creating some posters and perhaps a trailer to see if I can use that to move things forward, but that’s months away, at least. I have found an actress interested in the part; hopefully I can use her willingness to leverage more interest going forward.
With the lull in momentum with the Jessie biopic, I’m exploring a new genre: Horror. One of the actresses I auditioned for Treasure Hunt has, to me, an angelic appearance that, with minor makeup and changes in body language and expression, can transform to demonic. That got me interested in the idea of a horror movie for two reasons: one, I started thinking about an idea that wouldn’t let go, which tells me completing the script won’t be a problem, but two, horror is the rare genre where there’s a compelling track record of low-budget indie movies getting distribution and turning a profit. I think this is because, since ‘everyone’ dies in the movie, viewers don’t get attached to the specific actors.
I wrote a synopsis for the script idea, but am trying hard to not put more effort into it, since I need to focus on Treasure Hunt right now and am still trying to get momentum going for Jessie. I’m asking for other people’s input, though, since I’m the opposite of a fan of horror. I find horror movies either stupid or scary, and I don’t care for either. I’ve never let ignorance keep me from following a course of action, though, so did some research on the tropes of horror, picked a few to violate and others to honor, then wrote my outline.
I’ve been making some progress with Treasure Hunt. I’ve finally got the chemistry tests scheduled (next Wednesday) and because that was such a struggle, we agreed to do the table read on the same day. I have confidence that the chemistry will work out, but I do want to leave time in case things don’t (I’ll be recording the chemistry tests and asking friends and family for their thoughts and opinions as well). I’m trying to hammer out a shooting schedule now so I can start getting people to commit to dates, not to mention locking in locations, but having never done this before, I’m not terribly efficient at it. Then I need to start my crowdfunding campaign, which I had hoped to do this week, but beins as how it’s Friday, ain’t lookin like it gunna happen.
I’m still having a blast, though, even when I start to get a headache doing the schedule. I wish I had a producer to do all this, but at least I have confidence in myself that I can get all this done. One decision I have made is if I do another movie in the future, I’m going to do it all at once, not spread over weekends. That way I can get all the actor’s focused time and they won’t be distracted with other jobs/projects. Which, naturally, means bigger budgets, but I think I can leverage those up, perhaps first with my horror idea, then with the Jessie biopic. And if I can make them profitable, maybe I can package my murder mysteries and be off to the races.