"Joe Bob, we're going to make
a movie," I yelled to the scared little Joe Bob (he was so frightened,
he nearly wet himself), "and it is going to be so freakin' good that
we're gonna be rich."
"Yeah!" (this is Joe Bob's
famous reply to almost all of my ideas... Maybe it's just my charm.)
That was how it all started... and looking back on it now,
I kind of wonder what made me say it. At the time, we were in drama class. Our teacher was absent that day but had left the substitute instruction to have us watch Field of Dreams. Kevin Costner is a drama God! Fifteen minutes after the initial
idea spoutage to Joe, the entire class started to help us plan. It was definitely better than watching that movie.
We vetoed nearly every idea from their heads, but we did promise them
that they could all be in our movie, and we proceeded to mark their names
None of them are in the movie.
At the end of the first week, we had the following information
about our movie:
- It would be called TAPEWORM
- We would have as many scenes as possible filmed near unaware pedestrians,
and attempt to harass them
- One of the characters (Leggy) would talk EXTREMELY QUIETLY
- JACK THE SOUNDMAN would be quite prevalent, and if wasn't there,
the movie would be silent
- There would be a group of people that would walk around and laugh (what
- There would be random shots of Seth (a guy in our class) laughing (his laugh
was VERY frightening)
- Richid would be a character that picked his nose all of the time
So, with that information ALL in mind, Joe started coming
to my house frequently to write the movie. We started on Halloween (or
possibly the day before) of 2001, and within a week, we were on page ten.
FAST FORWARD ---------->>>>>>
In March of 2002, we FINISHED THE SCRIPT, and we had scrapped...
well, every single idea except the TAPEWORM (fetish) title. We
attempted to fill our movie's entire cast (which was accomplished in about
a month), and we felt pretty derned confident!
In our script, we included TV shows that the characters
view throughout the movie, and I assigned Joe Bob to the task of writing
those entirely by himself. He completed all of them in two days, and when
Spring break rolled around, we GOT 'EM ON DA CAM'RA!
We had a very unregulated filming method at the time: aim,
record, say "go." After we had recorded all of the tv/commercial
things, we came back to my house to test out the editing tools. We uploaded
the video to the computer, and after examination, we noticed a problem:
When Joe Bob purchased the brand new camera with which we
were filming, he had no worries about sound (nor had I). We just assumed
it would be top quality. Heck, it was a new camera! Our premonitions were
horribly wrong! It sounded like CRAP!!!
"No big deal," we said to ourselves, "we'll
just overdub." We also decided we might need a little help making
our movie. Jeff Summerel, a filmmaker,
worked in our very own town! I might want to get ahold of him!
I found his phone number and called him. Nearly 3 weeks later, he called
back and requested our script. It was sent in NO TIME!
YOU GUESSED IT --------->>>>>>>
After school one afternoon, we went to Jeff Summerel's home. It was a
nice, sophisticated abode. We sat with the man (whom I had never met before;
Joe Bob had been in one of his movies before, KUDZULA), as he discussed
our script with us. He talked of how massive it was, saying it was a great
script, BUT he was curious as to whether or not we could finish it. We
took these ideas as insults, and before long, he understood our position
on things (I'm quite sure he was 90% skeptical for the rest of the year).
Here are some of the things HE suggested, followed by OUR
|"Maybe you should make a few short films out of
parts of the movie first, and then maybe finish it if that works."
||"Well, we really just want to do the whole movie. We might
take parts of it later and submit them places as short subjects."
|"You might want to make a schedule and discuss with all of
your actors when and where you're going to film."
||"They're pretty much ready whenever." (They weren't)
|"This is going to take a long time!"
||"We think that maybe we can get it all done in two weeks."
Two weeks.... That was our estimate...
Afterwards, we showed him some of the stuff we had already
filmed (the commercial things), and played him some of the music written
for the movie. He was definitely impressed, and he offered to help get
it shown places when we finished...
We left his house with no more than we came, except more
faith in ourselves... We knew we'd finish it in two weeks from when we
Very late in June, we FINALLY got to start our work on the
movie. We started slow, getting very little done each day...
ONE MORE TIME -------->>>>>>>>>
It took one and a half years to complete the film from when
the first scenes were recorded. That's about 37 times the two week estimate
we had made. Also, only six of our original cast members are in the final flick,
everyone else was either recast or doubled up by other members of the
After we had finished it, we showed it to many people. We got generally good comments, but now I realize they were only encouraging us. Jeff Sumerel himself compared the dialogue to Being John Malkovich, though clearly it is not on the same level. The movie is scattered and nonsensical. It's an impressive effort. It show maturity in dealing with a large project, and that's a positive quality. However, the dialogue makes very little sense, and the amount of 'pretend' that is necessary in watching the movie makes it difficult to add to any list of favorites.
For more info on plot and characters (which I left out in this), check out http://www.welldang.com
After Tapeworm (fetish), we did a movie called The Human Elbow. It took nine months to finish. After it came Milligan Tribute Band, which took less than two
weeks to film. Maybe we were just pulling a little Nostradamus
on everyone, including ourselves?