Posts Tagged ‘Rack Focus’

img_2513So we had a grand plan for Rack Focus that was going to be a sequel to 20 Minutes or Less, the Rack Focus Round 3 entry produced by us here at Taurian Films. As with that film, one particular location was going to be a key piece of the film and while we moved things to an alternate location for the first one, that was something we did not wish to do for the second and decided to put off filming it. img_2433

That left Bj wondering what, if anything he could do for this round. What could he piece together that would not be a waste of time, effort and energy of the people involved. Not getting an idea, Bj thought he would have to eat the entry fee, but while at the gym, Bj worked out a short single location shoot that would take advantage of two powerful resources Bj has discovered in the past several months. Gabriella Corvina and Jo Lorio. They are two talented, driven actors as well as two women who can legitimately kick ass. After a few hours at the keyboard, Bj had a script, a prologue to a longer story he hopes to film with Gabby in the future. It was something small and easy in theory.

Filming was done last weekend and nearly didn’t happen. One of the things Bj has tried to do over the years as he wades through the indie waters attempting to reach the ocean of bigger, funded projects, is find a core group of people who are about getting work done. People like Fabian Lopez and Kerry McCormick who are as real with Bj today as they were years ago when he met them.

img_2500It’s hard though because so many people are all talk, such as the handful of people who were supposed to be on set Saturday to film the short. Now, not everyone is going to work with everyone on everything, but you would hope people could be up front about that fact. Buuuuuuut, while the actions of some threatened to curtail the shoot, Gabby came through in the clutch, calling on guys from the dojo her family own to be actors in the short. They didn’t have to but at the last minute, they were willing to jump and help out and help us get things done. Props to them as well as the fighter Jo brought with her. Will definitely be using those guys again in the future. Same thing with Gabby and Jo, they are talented hungry individuals and Bj expects them to blow up and make it big sooner than later and he intends to work with them as much as he can until then, and hopefully break out right alongside them.

Due date is Sunday at midnight for the short film. It’s clocking in around seven minutes at the moment. Hopefully people will enjoy it when they see it.

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On the Cheerleader Karate School front, the Seed and Spark campaign timetable is winding down, with CKS a ways away from the goal. There were some fine print details that served to derail things. $10k was always going to be a hard number to reach for a show that has next to no following currently due to the fact it is in production and not many people outside of our circle of friends and family have seen it. The money donated thus far will go back into the coffers of the people who donated it and hopefully they will again support us when we launch the new campaign.

But undaunted Bj and the crew have plans to reboot the crowdfunding campaign with a lower more attainable goal that will fund the second episode and pay the cast a bit for the work they did on the pilot episode. Bj continues to send out press releases to media outlets both online and offline, and continues to refine those press releases to hopefully work in that key word or phrase that hooks an editor, reporter, columnist, podcast host, radio show host to want to talk about CKS. Bj has netted a few local Denton businesses who are willing to work with him in promoting the show so ideally that can be worked out when the next campaign is run to be able to get more attention on it and ideally smash the goals.kkm_8267Whether that occurs when the pilot is screened at the Texas Theatre or beforehand is up for discussion. Either way, Bj will continue to champion Cheerleader Karate School online and in person and at cons and events. It’s going to take Herculian efforts to get people to see CKS, not just a tweet or Facebook post and Bj understands that and will step up his efforts to expose more people to the show.

More information can be seen at http://www.facebook.com/CheerleaderKarateSchool and we encourage folks to check out the page, like it and share it with anyone who they feel may be interested in the show.


Recent Radio Appearances:

Cutting Room Floor (bj)

http://www.talkshoe.com/talkshoe/web/audioPop.jsp?episodeId=1085382&cmd=apop.

Cutting Room Floor (bj n Gabby)

www.talkshoe.com/tc/81947

Chatterbox w/ Ellen Hedger

https://soundcloud.com/ellen-smith-hedger/the-chatterbox-with-ellen-hedgerbj-lewis-with-taurianfilmscks

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Rounding up a few things going on with Taurian Films at the moment…

Party Girl:The Series, starring the immensely talented Cait Pool and a host of other talented Texans, received a nomination from the 2016 Fort Worth Indie Film Showcase: Best Domestic Drama – MicroShort. The nomination alone is nice. Of course Bj Lewis hopes for a win, but still it shows that the work of everyone, the time, energy, sacrifice and talent from everyone went into making a product that was worth while.

An episode of the show will screen at the showcase in a few weeks. Details to come.13458615_1224474317565612_1010919644760187953_o.png

The crew is waiting out a few summer vacations for cast and crew members to get back in the saddle of filming the pilot. Creator Bj Lewis is also bringing in a DP that is experienced with the Canon C100 that Bj has long wanted to begin filming his productions on. It will give him a chance to get out from behind the camera and focus soley on directing the action going on, which he has also wanted for a while now. So things are going to work out there.

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Gabby in 20 Minutes or Less.

 

 

Rack Focus Round 4 is nearly upon North Texas and Bj has an idea already for his entry. Well, he had a number of ideas, but the most recent one, a sequel to his Round 3 entry, 20 Minutes or Less. Bj has written a third part as well to complete the 20 Minutes or Less trilogy. The idea of course is to keep doing more action shorts to up his game in that area, which will only serve to improve things going forward particularly for Cheerleader Karate School.

Speaking on CKS, while the majority of the cast members have martial arts experience, the newest edition to the cast, Timylle Adams, does not have all that much. Timylle is playing Tyesha Banks. That roles has gone through a few changes in recent weeks but Bj is confident Timylle is the one who will take the role to the next level. Now to help her with her fight prowess, Gabriella Corvina (Fi Espinoza) has volunteered her time to give Timylle private lessons to help her get up to speed. This will be especially important since Fi and Tyesha’s conflict and fight scenes are a high point of the series.

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Timylle training.

It’s looking like the crowdfunding campaign for the first season will kick off in September to coincide with Bj’s efforts to have CKS a part of the Seed & Spark New Voice Rally. Prizes for it include finishing funds for web series. Who knows what can happen there. The main thing is looking high and low for sources of funding that can help make the show happen.

 

 

 

 


 

 


 

Well Round Three of Rack Focus 3 happened last night. I think it might be still happening. Despite some technical snafu’s for a lot of the night, things were relatively good for the screening of the third round of the film competition. Thankfully 20 Minutes or Less came off without a glitch in the presentation. There were some technical hiccups regarding audio. Isn’t it always audio?

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With the incomparable star in the making, Gabby.

But people still seemed to enjoy it. The judges gave good criticism, they seemed to dig the concept of it as well as everyone had rave reviews about Gabriella Corvina in the lead role and the validity, the presence that she brought to the role. We of course knew she had that and that’s why we wanted her involved. Kerry McCormick, (who was in a few films last night, differing roles and bringing great stuff to them all), brought more of that realness to the project. It was just moves to them, they knew what they were doing and it showed.

 

A lot of what the judges were saying we had already been thinking in hindsight about the project. As Bj Lewis stated on the mic last night it was a learning project for us to do more action as we endeavor to do it the best we can. Thanks to a kick as cast/crew 20 Minutes or Less turned out great. And turned out to be a good blue print as we intend to go back to the well of that film after finding a truly huge home to film it in as it was intended. More on that to come.

It was a good time though. Lessons were learned and the bar was set and set higher and higher last night as more films were shown later in the evening. Some really talented people are in the DFW and we see we at Taurian Films really need to step up our game to show that we belong in the same conversation as some of the other films.

Hopefully the technical problems did not mar the show too much. We were all hoping at this point they would have been ironed out. This is from the outside looking in as of course we don’t not have the knowledge or experience of what it’s like to put on a film festival. We can only hope lessons were learned there and future events can be smoother. It’s a great opportunity for area filmmakers, actors, etc. and we want to see it be the best it can be. 13254411_10101074705673508_4401587139637705291_n

In other film news, we started work on the pilot for Cheerleader Karate School, shooting a great scene with Summer Dobozy and Deborah Kay Hooker as Keegan Fox and her mother, Sara Fox. Great stuff from those two. Consummate professionals who I we think work well as mother and daughter. We look forward to more of their scenes together.

There is of course lots more to come over the next few months as we develop Cheerleader Karate School.

Saturday was another great day as anticipated when Kerry McCormick was added to the project. Kerry is an accomplished actor, martial artist and all around great person. Of the small number of folks met thus far that years later is still as real as they were from Day 1.

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Making notes on the scene. Planning the magic.

Coupled with the talented Gabriella Corvina and you have the makings of a dynamite scene and from what the ladies put together already, everyone is going to be talk about their scene. Of course we wish it could have gone on longer but Rack Focus films are only to be 10 minutes long so we needed an intense two minute throw down from them. Gabriella will be throwing down with other people along the way, so will she make it out alive? Who knows. You will just have to check things out when the screening happens.

 

We wanted to produce 20 Minutes or Less for Rack Focus Round 2 but things happened with our planned lead at that point. Of course things happen for a reason they say. And who knows if we would have come in contact with Gabriella or the other talented people connected to this project had it not been delayed?


 

We are a week away from auditions to fill out the rest of the team for the upcoming project Cheerleader Karate School. We already have two of the main five ladies cast, one of which is of course Gabriella, the other is Christine Rejcek, a budding actress and trained martial artist. Looking forward to those auditions that, barring any last minute issues, will have Gabriella and Christine onhand to participate and read with the actresses so we can get an early feel on chemistry for the group. CKS is something we are proud of and think in this day and age of franchises for TV shows and movies, we think it could become a successful one.

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Gabriella working out fight stuff with Kerry for 20 Minutes or Less. She’s going to bring that same enthusiam to CKS.

 

 

The first couple episodes have been written and will be broken down in order to gauge an average budget per episode to add to our business plan as we seek funding to make it happen.

We are working on marketing/promotional ideas as well. We are planning a web comic tie in that will take place a bit before the timeline of the show.  Trying to think of swag that we can offer to people in support of the project beyond the obvious t-shirts. Speaking of those we are going through the ND T-Shirt Company, a local Denton business, for our shirts. We have seen the proofs for CKS shirts and we are definitely looking forward to getting them produced and out to the masses. We hope to have everyone in place cast wise so we get get promo pics done in time to do some grassroots promotion at a few local comic book conventions. Of course everything comes down to money, at first anyway and what we can afford to start with.


 

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A past pin up sketch for HTB. Annie has lent her likeness to the main character for the book and plans to star in the film adaption.

Work is ongoing on the HTB teaser for our graphic novel/film project with Annie Cruz. Jermaine is out in Cali putting the final touches on that. In the meantime people can and should be liking the facebook page or following on twitter @HTBMovie to stay up to date with the latest information on the project.


 

Party Girl: The Series is still gaining attention from people who have not seen it before. Which, by viewcounts, is a lot. Hopefully this trend will continue and more people will check out the show as it’s as good today as it was last year when we produced it.

 


Our Suicide Squad fanfilm, A Typical Tuesday is still in post. Probably a month or two longer before it drops. We are still contemplating a screening for it, or if we just drop it online. Hopefully people will enjoy the short which was just made by fans for fellow fans of the soon to be box office record breaking Suicide Squad.

 

Sunday was a good day at MDF Studios in Cedar Hill.

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MDF Studios

 

MDF Studios is the family dojo of Gabriella Corvina, the uber talented young actress we were fortunate enough to land in the lead role of WINNIE for the 20 Minutes or Less short film for the Rack Focus Round 3 competition. As stated before, we have shot action, but we really wanted to improve on things and have a better end product when it comes to our action scenes. A big part of that of course is organization, planning and practice. The meeting Sunday was to get with the actors involved in choreographing and rehearsing some of thing action to be seen in the short.

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Gabriella and Isadora working out their scuffle.

May 7th will get here sooner than we know it so we have to get the work in. The main fight scene will have to wait until we can get Gabriella with Kerry McCormick, but we were able to plot out a few other things that go down. I hope to scout to location prior to the next time we meet to really tighten up the choreography before filming. That way I can get exact measurements and layout of the place so we will be able to see where the actors can and can’t go.

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Bella and Gabriella working things out.

It’s always fun and exciting to see people really buy into your script and your project and willing to do what it takes to make it happen. That’s what I saw on display Sunday with the cast/crew I was blessed with. I know it will make for a fun short.

But don’t just take my word for it. Check out what they had to say about things….


 

Check a clip from our upcoming short fanfilm, A Typical Tuesday.


 

Check out Party Girl: The Series Season 2 starring the incomparable Cait Pool!


 

And be sure to check out and follow facebook.com/HTBMovie for our upcoming graphic novel/film with Annie Cruz!

 

 

…we were all set to go for Rack Focus Round 2 when on the date fees were due, things were scuttled early. Now it was kind of annoying when that happened, as we were lining things up nicely to be able to shoot our script when the carpet was kind of yanked out from under us. Ideally that does not happen this time regarding the pitch gathering Saturday.

We have been sitting on our script since then. It’s a 10-pager, which we have discussed before, but we don’t mind refreshing you all about it. At least a little bit of it. We’d like to keep the main crux of the story to ourselves, but what we can say it is called 20 Minutes or Less and it will be a short action film. We are contemplating ways to make the action interesting and different on some level.

Action is not new by any means, so we just have to find some way to make the presentation of it stand out beyond doing the whole slow down, ramp back up thing that sooooo many people do these days. I honestly hate that with a passion and will see to never employ that method in anything I have a hand in. This is important to me for this project as well as my big action pilot I am planning on filming this year, Cheerleader Karate School, and it will help with SHIFT as well.

We have a few needs for the short. We need people both in front of and behind the camera, helping out on set. We need henchmen that are ready and have the experience to throw down with our heroine for the story. We have our eye on someone for that and we hope to make that known soon.

We have a couple location needs. One, a big ass house where the action takes place. And a mom and pop pizza shop. We’re looking into some spots in Denton, already rejected by one of them, but hopefully one of them lets us in the door so we can keep things local and showcase a Denton spot. They scratch our back, we scratch theirs.

Will be interested to see what people we can wrangle for the project, of course hoping all of them are ready to work. We have had a couple things we planned lately scuttled because people either aren’t communicating or just don’t seem to be about what they said they were initially. It’s aggravating, but it helps you know who to saddle up with and who to steer clear of.

But we will see what happens.


 

Be sure to check out Season 2 of Party Girl: The Series


Check out our Harley Quinn (Caly Pool) and Deadshot (Chad Cramer) from our Suicide Squad fanfilm. The full short is coming soon.

….is a new film competition for us local DFW area filmmakers started by Israel Luna. The screening for the first competition was held a few weeks ago at the historic Texas Theater and saw eight movies screened for judges and moviegoers. It was cool to see as I know and have worked with many of the people involved in many of the films. There were some hiccups to be had given it was the first ever event for the competition. I like the idea of it though and we were looking forward to participating in the second competition.

But we missed out. While we have our 10-minute movie script ready to go and were prepared to pay the entry fee before the deadline, we were not prepared for the deadline to be moved up due to so many people entering. There were 30 submissions totaled when they closed the submissions 14 hours before the deadline.

It’s nice that the contest has grown so quickly, but yeah, it sucked for us.

But, as stated, we have the script, we have the cast and we have the desire to see this film completed. So It will be done over the next couple months and finished in what would have been time enough for the Rack Focus deadline and screening, but we will screen it ourselves. We are going to drop out Suicide Squad fanfilm in December, screening it at the Texas Theater and we will have our planned film, “20 Minutes of Less” screen before the Squad film so it can be seen on the big screen. It’s going to be a great little short with some humor and some action courtesy of Adrenaline Fights & Stunts.

We’re looking forward to it.

In the meantime of course, please do check out what we have going now….

The newest Party Girl: The Series Micro Chapter

The Suicide Squad: A Typical Tuesday fanfilm Teaser