Liam Titcomb | Love Don’t Let Me Down
Rejected 05 /25/ 2012. What they made instead…
A summer walk through an unconventional cemetery, with portraits of the dead carved into trees.
Warm and sublime.
We will shoot at magic hour at the Scarborough Bluffs in Toronto.
Using carved foam and special effects painting, we will dress tree trunks in a rural area to appear as if portraits have been carved into them. Some of the portraits will look freshly carved, others will seem weathered, as if they were carved a decade ago.
We follow Liam as he wanders through the park visiting each of the unique portraits.
One of the carved faces has a dark mouth that opens into a hollow in the tree. It has been filled with bird seed. Birds and squirrels crawl in and out of the ancient wooden-head.
As the video ends, Liam begins carving a tree.
We see that Liam has carved the portraits of two figures facing one another.
Cut to black.
Aprox. 4 weeks after receipt of the production funds.
METZ | Wet Blanket (Version II: Initiation) Listen Here
Rejected 07/05/2012 What they made instead...
A continuous steadicam shot following a person through a bizarre initiation ritual.
We open with a shot of a blindfolded person tied to a filthy mattress, being dragged behind a vehicle on a rope in the middle of the night. The mattress is sliding around the asphalt surface of a basketball court. The mattress and blindfolded victim are illuminated with a spot light.
The vehicle stops. A crowd of people carrying torches, wearing burlap masks pull the blind-folded person off of the mattress. The blindfolded person begins to run, still partially bound in the ropes that held him to the mattress. The blindfolded person’s path is guarded on two sides by menacing people in ugly burlap masks and holding torches. Standing shoulder to shoulder in two lines, the torch carriers form a long tunnel, which the blindfolded person runs through. We follow the blindfolded man as he runs. The camera stays just ahead of him. As the blindfolded person advances, the torch carriers touch their torches together behind him, preventing him from turning back.
Finally, the blindfolded man comes to a break in the line of torch carriers. He realizes that the torch carriers have been shoving him in a circle. He walks into the centre of the circle, looking disorientated. Suddenly the stocky men with the padded bats reappear. The men grab the blindfolded man and drag him towards the tall steal post used to support the basketball hoop. The men use bindings dangling from the blindfolded victim to hoist him into the air. They dangle the victim from the basketball hoop like a pinata.
Cut to black.
METZ | Wet Blanket Listen Here
Rejected 07/05/2012 What they made instead...
Werewolf groupies murder the band.
Let the Right One In vs Teen Wolf
The video will be one continuous shot, played in reverse, as if the audience is rewinding a security tape.
We will open with a shot of three female werewolves partying and drinking blood from beer steins. In the background, three bodies are suspended from the ceiling, wrapped in plastic. Plastic tubing has been inserted into the bundled victims to allow their blood to drain. The plastic tubing leads to a dispensing nozzle (similar to the hose on a beer keg at a frat party).
The tape winds back further. We see woman wrapping the band members in plastic like human spiders, and hoisting up their cocooned bodies to hang from the ceiling.
The tape winds back further. One by one, we see the band members murdered by the werewolves.
The tape winds back further. We see woman transforming in front of the camera.
The tape winds back further. The groupies look like regular young women, hanging out with the band.
We close with a traditional shot of the band posing with the girls. In an homage to the ending of Micheal Jackson’s Thriller, we freeze frame and zoom in. One of the girls has demonic eyes.
Cut to black
The werewolf girls will have prosthetic fangs. Hair will be applied to their chests to obscure their breasts. Two LED lights on thin wire will float in front of the actresses eyes, creating an animal “glowing eyes” effect in camera.
The footage will be grainy and desaturated. Similar to a security video, or a snuff film.
Rituals | Mesmerize
Rejected by MuchFact 05/30/2012
The band reanimates a mummified corpse using a car battery.
Dark, ambient. Moments of humour.
A) We open with a shot of a blackened, mummified human driving a pick-up truck at night.
B) Flashback: Three men arrive at a swampy lake in Northern Ontario in a pick up truck.
C) The men locate a tree stump near the lake with rusted chains wrapped around it. They unwrap the chains and begin pulling them. Bubbles erupt from the lake. The men pull a coffin from the lake wrapped in plastic drop cloth.
D) Using a box cutter, the men cut away the plastic. They pry open the casket with a crowbar. Inside is a blackened muffed corpse.
E) One of the men pops the hood of the pick up truck and attaches jumper cables to the vehicle’s battery. Using alligator clips the corpse is wired to the battery. The truck is started. The corpse sits up with a jolt of electricity.
One of the men reveals a remote control, similar to one used on remote control cars or aeroplanes. The man pushes the nobs on the remote control. The corpse stands up robotically in response.
F) The man with the remote control sends the mummy after his companions as a joke. Startled, the two companions rush away. One of the frightened men stumbles. The mummy jumps on his chest. The man with the remote control struggles with it’s switches and buttons. The mummy is no longer obeying him.
G) The mummy begins strangling the companion violently. The first man drops his remote control and tries to pull the mummy off his companion. The mummy is too strong. The first man grabs at the copper wires still connecting the mummy to the car battery and yanks them away from the mummies body. The mummy is continues to attack.
F) The third man returns with a large thick tree branch. He strikes the mummy in the chest and frees the man who was being strangled. The mummy staggers back, bracing it’s self on the hood of the truck. The three men rush away from the scene into the woods, with the creature in pursuit.
G) As the video ends we see mummy turn around and begin loping towards the idling truck.
H) We return to the open shot of the mummy driving.
Camera 7D Canon DSLR + Canon EF 24-105mm zoom lenses + shoulder mount.
Effects The mummy will played by a thin actor performing in heavy body paint, with prosthetics and special effect make up on his face hands and feet.
We will shoot in daylight at magic hour.
Sparks and smoke during the car battery sequence will be shot practically.
Hooded Fang | Tosta Mista Listen Here
Rejected by MuchFact 04/12/ 2012
Hooded Fang party at a movie theatre walking on top of the seats and other guests as they perform. Behind them, on the big screen weird black and white science fiction footage is projected. By the end of the video, the whole crowd crawling over one another / moshing / dancing.
Art direction / Mood
Rambunctious, art punk party.
Step1 We will shoot weird black and white science fiction images similar to those in the Weekly World News. Examples may include the Fiji Mermaid, Batboy, cannibal zombies, alien heads, CIA agents, pirate gold, bigfoot ect.
Step2 Hooded Fang will perform at the Toronto Underground theatre. As they sing, the band will climb on top of the theatre seats, walking around on top of the audience members laps and shoulders. The weird black and white footage from step 1 will be projected on the movie screen behind them. By the end of the video, everyone in the theatre is climbing on top of one another, dancing / moshing.
Camera 7D Canon DSLR + Canon EF 24-105mm zoom lenses + Steadicam Pilot & Vest Arm Kit. Black and white sci-fi footage will be given a “super 8” look via Magic Bullet Suite.
Listen to live version here Great video in it’s own right!
Rejected by MuchFact 04/30/2012
The Elwins have a medieval joust wearing armor constructed entirely from balloons.
Art Direction / Mood
Fun, viral, pop psychedelic, stop motion.
Step 1 We will construct costumes using 2000 twisting balloons, similar to the those used by magicians to make balloon animals. The characters will include three knights wearing balloon suits of armor, three princesses wearing balloon-crafted dresses. The knights will ride stick ponies with large horse heads completely sculpted from balloons.
Step 2 We will act out a joust in stop-motion. Each time a knight makes contact on another knight with his balloon sword or balloon lance some of his armor will pop, and disappear. Once a knight has all of this armor popped, he will be eliminated from the tournament and run from the jousting area in only his underwear. At the end of the video champion is crowned and he receives the hand of the princess.
Camera Stop motion 5K stills. 7D Canon DSLR + Canon EF 24-105mm zoom lenses.
Studio We will be shooting in the large room at Silver Line Studios.
PIG Magazine Interview (Translation)
Italian version here: http://www.pigmag.com/it/2012/06/05/almost-famous-jesse-ewles/
1. Hi Jesse, where are you now? What are you doing at the moment?
Hi! At this very moment? I’m eating a piece of spelt-bread toast with humus that my girlfriend Jessica Rae Gordon made me.
2. You’re very young talent. How did you find your passion and when did you start to work?
My enthusiasm for the work gets renewed daily. Mostly because I’m curious and I have a good internet connection…
Originally I was attracted to film because it encumpasses all of the arts I was curious about. Filmmakers curate experiences by combining sounds and visuals in interesting ways. I think the internet is allowing filmmakers (and everyone else) to take that curation several steps further. Urban-noir filmmaker David Lynch for instance doesn’t just make movies anymore. He doesn’t just combine sound and image to give an audience an experience. Lynch’s website offers many different items, some digital some physical, that can be considered “Lynchian”. He makes ambient music mp3s that will make you feel unsettled, even while strolling around your friendly neighbourhood on a sunny day. He sells dark roast coffee to sip on before a transcendental meditation session. He has a video that teaches you to make his favourite food, Quinoa. It’s the same world-building a great director would do when creating a film, but it’s been made more real. Lynch is helping curate real people’s lives.
This opportunity to do real life world-building is exciting. My world view is that of a tinkerer. I like to take things apart and put them back together again, leaving out a few screws to see if the thing will still run. Sometimes stuff doesn’t work (I have a whole blog about stuff that didn’t work) but that’s what experimenting is all about.
3. What is the gap between the first feeling you have when you start to work on something, and the feelings you have when your project is completed? Does your work fit perfectly with your idea / imagination?
No project arrives into the world exactly as conceived… and that can be a very good thing. Filmmaking is collaborative medium for most directors and you’re hope is that the great people you’re working with will be able to elevate your ideas. You hope they can take the direction they are given, and create compositions that are much better than what the filmmaker could have done on their own.
I think filmmaking can be approached like gardening. You have a seed, that is the idea. You place that seed into comfortable conditions — comfortable conditions vary depending on the idea. Action sequences for instance, seem to “want” to be shot in circumstances that are somewhat precarious for the crew. A scene when a character is ruminating on this future is best shot in a quiet place with a locked down camera.
As the seed sprouts and grows, the gardeners job is to train the plant up a lattice, gently steering, while letting it grow in natural directions. By harvest time, you probably don’t have exactly the plant you were imagining, but you’re still happy as long as it’s healthy and bears fruit.
4. I often see animals in your videos. How do animals inspire your virtual worlds and concepts?
People have always had a fascination with animals, especially those of us who live urbanized lives and see animals rarely. You tend for instance, to find more die-hard vegans in urban areas as opposed to on rural farms. The situation reminds me of Philip K. Dick’s book Do Androids Dream Electric Sheep. In the book as the natural world hovers on extinction humans keep both real and synthetic animals as status symbols. The pets are badges of empathy and demonstrate that the owner is still capable of love and compassion.
For my part, I find animals interesting for the same reasons ancient people did. They’re good tools for storytelling. If you look at old fables, animals were often used as stand ins for humans, so the story would not be held up by the details of the protagonists background. If a wolf is central character, most people in the audience have an idea of what a wolf is and how it acts, the storyteller doesn’t need to explain where the wolf is from, or its philosophy.
5. I think every kind of project in life is like a pregnancy: what is your favourite phase, and why? (I mean: when you start and finish a project in your life -not only professional stuff- what is your favourite moment according to the metaphor I gave you)
Hmm. Well… much like pregnancy, conceiving is the fun part. Labouring to bring the idea into the world takes the most effort. Watching how your children make their way in the world after their born is the most scary and rewarding part.
Some other thoughts I like…There is no sharpness without friction. And… Seek out difficult challenges. Things that are hard to do are rare (and therefore valuable) because they are difficult for people to copy.
6. In your work, how much is “handmade” and how much is “digital manipulation”?
It’s 50/50. My images are almost always real objects or paintings I have photographed and animated in the computer. There are very few 100 % computer generated images.
7. I know that Svankmajer is one of your favourite artist: how he influenced/influences you?
Svankmajer is cool. I was really into his work when I came out of college because it was so tactile, and I had just spent a year making an cold CGI student film. You could see Svankmajer’s fingerprints in the clay, and can imagine Svankmajer, this mad filmmaker, down on all fours strangling the clay into place.
8. What’s the difference between making a video for a band, and making a video for every other kind of client?
There’s no real difference I can see, apart from the fact that musicians usually have a taste for fringe work and business people generally like more commercial stuff. As far as the ease of the process goes, the personalities of the clients make more of difference than their backgrounds. Dream clients are typically patient, curious and brave. They take their time selecting a director who they really love, and then dive into the project. They generally don’t stress about deadlines because they know if they don’t have time to do a project right, they probably don’t have time to do it over.
9. When I appreciate an artist, I like to know something personal about him, like how his standard day is, what he reads in the toilet or the safety valve he uses to vent his anger. Would you tell me three things about you personally? (not necessarily the same as I suggested)
This might give you an idea of my personality… I was in an open-mic storytelling show last winter. My story was about porn. NSFW https://vimeo.com/23015659
My personal life is pretty quiet. I’ve tried to build a simple life, so that I can take risks and attempt to do hard things in my work. I have unique group of crazy, irreverent friends that are my only valuable asset. Everything else I own could go up in a fire and I wouldn’t really miss it.
If you’re looking for more specific details… I cut my own hair and I like to make Gordon Ramsay’s F word recipes.
Zeds Dead | Living Dead Listen Here (and see what they made instead)
Rejected 05/17/2012 | What they made instead.
Post-apocalyptic beach party.
Intro 0:00 - 1:00 Using a series of slow motion tableaus, we show a group of horribly disfigured, zombie-like people posing in 50s style beach-party scenes. Behind the zombies, a rear projection screen plays looping footage of an idyllic beach with waves breaking on the shore line. The beach scenes will be lit with a moody red lighting, as if to suggest the events are taking place under a giant heat-lamp. The scenes will feel “staged” as if the beach set has been constructed in a bomb shelter miles bellow the surface.
Middle 1:00 - 3:35 As the pace of the track speeds up, we will cut more quickly to various other beach activities shot in slow motion. Activities include volleyball, hula hooping, crushing sand castles and fake water skiing in front of the projection screen.
Exit 3:35 - 4:30 We cut to face of a dreary-looking lab tech(s) with a thousand-mile stare. The lab tech is sitting in front of a large monitoring station lined with hundreds of colourful lights. A monitor in font of the lab tech displays the beach scenes. Looking bored, the lab tech turns a dial marked “ambient radiation”.
We cut to an image of the sun projected on the rear-projection screen. It glows noticeably brighter. The beach zombies gaze at the burning sun reverently. They lean their heads back as if enjoying the added heat. Slowly their skin begins to melt from their bodies.
We see the lab tech once more, looking desensitized. He turns up the heat further.
To close, we repeat the slow motion tableau pans from the opening of the video. The zombies are still posing enthusiastically, but by now, they have been fried to skeletons by the heat of the room.
Cut to black
Depending on Zack and Dylan’s comfort level, they can participate in the zombie sequences or simply act as the lab techs.
Aprx. 4 weeks from the date the productions funds are received.
We Have Band | Love What You’re Doing Listen Here
A video featuring three ancient Tai Chi masters shot in slow motion. The eyes of the masters will flash red and blue to the beat of the song. The movements of the masters will be inter-cut energetically with pop psychedelic animations of Chinese dragons. The band will not appear in the video. The art direction for the dragons will be similar to this:
The video will be inter-cut between two scenarios. Scenario one will feature three Tai Chi masters performing on a set of ruined over grown steps. The Tai Chi routines will be performed and filmed at twice normal speed, then converted to slow motion in post. This will give the movement of the performance added intensity and make the footage ominously beautiful.
Scenario two will be an animation based on a Chinese dragon. The dragon will be an elaborate stop-motion puppet decorated with jewels, metallic textiles and silky fibers. The animation will feature the dragon snaking through a natural environment with fantasy / pop-psychelic elements (ie rivers of jewels ect) The dragon peruses the tail of a second dragon. Eventually he catches it, and in the final shot we see that there are dozens of identical dragons all connected together mouth to tail into a giant psychedelic chain.
Theme Park | Jamaica
Rejected 05/14/ 2012 What they made instead...
An animation following a stunt bike, as it drives through various colourful L.A backyards.
The video will be one continuous tracking shot of the stunt rider driving through a variety of Los Angeles backyards. The characters in the backyards will be looping animations.
The vibe will be similar to the NES classic PaperBoy, except the images will all be hand painted in the style of David Hockney, and the images will move from left to right instead of diagonally. The overall mood of the video will be warm, relaxing and cheeky. The video equivalent of melting neapolitan ice cream.
A) An Evel Knievel-style stunt man stands on top of a dirt hill surrounded by colourful streamers, palm trees and a few photographers. The stuntman drives down the ramp picking up speed and charges into a huge loop to loop. He then hits a second ramp and flies over some wrecked cars. The stunt man completes the jump but fails to stop at the victory circle. The bike flies off the course and breaks through a safety barrier into the neighbouring backyards.
B) The motorcycle crashes through multiple backyards inhabited by the following…
A sexy pool party. People are sunbathing and diving. The motorcycle goes over the diving board, lands on the other side of the pool.
The motorcycle passes a steel drum band.
It passes a man scuba diving in his pool.
Girls in a hottub.
A vacant house filled with stray cats.
A homeless man with a barbecue built into a shopping cart, cooking weiners. A flock of seagulls take.
Two 70’s wrestlers, wrestling on a trampoline.
A movie crew filming muppets.
A collection of colourful billboards.
A pornography shoot.
70’s bodybuilders weightlifting.
A group of people rollerskating with a dog.
A ferris wheel.
A fry truck.
An LA gang, harvesting marijuana.
A graffiti artist painting a mural.
A robot dinosaur eating cars.
A garage band.
A helicopter taking off.
A group of cheerleaders stacked into a human pyramid.
Two Dogtown skateboarders, skating in an empty pool.
C) The motorcycle drives down into the empty pool with the skate kids. The bike flies up the opposite side of the pool into the air. We see the motorbike fly out of the backyards and zoom off of a cliff face towards the ocean. We watch the motorbike fall. A rainbow parachute pops out from the stuntman’s back. He glides slowly into the Pacific, being cheered on by some surfers and some curious dolphins.
Fade to black.
*image by David Hockney
Odonis Odonis | Busted Lip Listen Here
Rejected by Much Fact 04/13/2012
Dark imagery projected on a stretching latex screen.
Mood & Art Direction
Dark 90’s feel. Seamless blend of sex and horror and humour.
Step 1: We will create a montage of 90’s inspired images. These will include plates of the band under gloomy daylight, running through a dead forest. Portraits of people with Hypertrichosis (werewolf syndrome). Images of women’s mouths chewing.
Step2: We will construct a large latex screen. The montage footage will be projected onto the screen.
Step 3. A nude actor will be placed behind the latex screen. The actor will stretch the latex to the beat of the song distorting the projections in time to the music. Periodically, a light behind the screen will illuminate the actor, revealing their form to the camera.
Camera: 7D Canon DSLR + Canon EF 24-105mm zoom lenses.
Screen: The screen will be constructed from .45mm thick white latex rubber sheet.
Portable.tv Interview (unabridged)
This week I did an interview with Portable.tv regarding my video for Of Montreal. I decided to publish the unedited article here —You can view the original by clicking “Portable.tv” above, in case that’s unclear. :)
So Spiteful Intervention is a very mixed media, did you create the artwork as well? How did they come together like they have?
Yes, I painted the majority of the work. My good friends Lee Stringle and Cameron Tomsett came in to help with the final push so we would hit the deadline. Our approach was to take hand-painted characters and animate them by mapping them to a 3D meshes in Autodesk Maya.
The imagery or idea behind it seems a little dark, what general mood/feeling did you want to generate with it?
Originally I had wanted to do a 3D video in a similar style to artist Jeff Koons collages. That idea was rejected. Treatment one was too pop-arty for track. The first few times I listened to the song, I was focusing on the poppy rhythm of the piano and the change at 1:39. Both reminded me of the Beatles White Album for some reason… anyways, I completely missed how dark the lyrics actually were. The song’s all about self-loathing and battling dark thoughts, so I felt having Kevin’s head morph into various creatures would be the simplest, and most fun way to illustrate that idea. I think the colours, the loose painting and the bounciness of the images, combined with how sad all of the drawings look, matched the song pretty well.
You’ve done quite a few film clips, how do you approach each one with a different mindset and originality?
I’m curious. I like taking things apart and rebuilding them in different ways.
In art school we were always encouraged to find one distinctive way of working, and to put all projects through that filter. There’s the Alex McLeod filter, and the Martin Wittfooth filter, the Jessica Rae Gordon filter. They each build little worlds, with their own sets of rules. It’s a great approach for business as Milton Glaser would say. The main thing I took away from illustration was the mechanics of world building.
I think my filter is influenced by the internet I think. My work is filled with the mutts that are created when when the world’s culture begins to have sex with itself and spawn mutants. My videos are experiments, never intended for mass production. If I was writing this for an council grant, I’d say it’s about metamorphosis and the images that live in the crossover between the analog and digital world.
What general process do you go through when coming up for an idea for something like this and how do you develop it?
I like to use the music as a seed, and imagine a world growing out of it. This leads to experimentation by necessity. I’ll listen to a track and think, this song reminds me of a Saturday morning cartoons, or this song reminds me of Voyager Space probe, or troll under a bridge… the songs take you a lot of different places. Especially if you have a mind that’s so full of rubbish absorbed from the internet.
For Spiteful Intervention, I knew I wanted to make images that were dark and creepy, to match the lyrics, but also had a pretty silliness to them, to match the song. I started to think of various images that had that vibe, I could use as influences. Black velvet clowns, the 16th century paintings of fruit arranged to look like faces by Giuseppe Arcimboldo. I also riffed off artist William Blake’s images from the Divine Comedy.
You work with a lot of different media and mediums, do you have one thing you like more than all the others?
My favourite aspect of making videos is that they can be experimentations in storytelling. I chose to make videos in the first place as an alternative to film school, so trying new things and learning the best approaches for setting a certain mood is the whole point. Moving forward, I’d like to work towards becoming a good multimedia storyteller. So for me, it’s not so much about doing more animation, or more live action, but instead developing a long form style where each of those worlds coexist. Not in a Roger Rabbit kind of way. More like how fantasy and naturalistic ideas coexist in our imaginations. For feature film, I’d like to direct meta stories like Slaughterhouse Five (the book, not the crappy movie) or Alan Moore’s the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (the comic, not the crappy movie) or the scifi book Snow Crash. Stories that leave room for absurd cartoons amidst violent and pornographic worlds. :)
Of Montreal | Spiteful Intervention (version 1)
Rejected 01/15/2012 What we made instead...
A 3D, morphing, animated collage. The images will be similar to the work of artist Jeff Koons, combined with more realistic versions of characters from the Of Montreal album art. The collaged images will be converted into 3D using the post-3D technique popular in IMAX films.
We will construct animated collages featuring kitsch images (toys, candy), paint blobs and magazine collage featuring sexy lips, fingers with colourful nail polish and photos of wild animals.
The lip-stick mouths featured in the animation will sing along to the track as they float through the compositions. The singing mouths will be similar to the giant mouth at the beginning of Rock Horror Picture Show.
The photo collaged images will be imported into the 3D suite Maya and converted into CG.
We will paint a nude model all in white with white body make-up. We will paint the model’s hair white with spray-on hair colour. We will project the collage animation from step 1 on the model’s body. The model will be seated against a black velvet curtain to absorb the projectors reflected light.
The collage elements will be shot and scanned at 4K and animated in After Effects and Maya 3D.
The final video will be delivered as a 1080p .mov quicktime.
Sum 41 | What am I to Say (treatment #3)
The last guest at a formal party smashes up the place in slow motion.
Warm, hazy lighting, similar to Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut. The camera will move around the scene on a track shooting at 120 fps.
We see a garden at night, set up for a formal party. The area is deserted. Overhead is a canopy of glass light bulbs. There are two long banquet tables with a 15 foot stretch of grass in between. A ceramic lawn jockey in the shape of a dog stands beside two water bowls. At one end of the party is a “guest of honour table” with a cake and presents. It has a giant portrait of a young woman hanging above it, similar to the giant portrait of the Queen that used to hang in the Winnipeg Jets arena.
Beside the table is a coat rack, overflowing with coats. Some of the coats are piled on the ground. It seems the guests left in a hurry. At the other end of the party is a small bandstand with a microphone, a couple of amps, and some stools.
Deryck slouches in a beat up armchair, on the lawn in the centre party. He looks out of place. He seems to have dragged the chair there. He is wearing a soiled black suit with his tie undone. It looks as if he was punched in the jaw. He is not wearing any shoes or socks.
In slow motion we begin a long track shot as Deryck stands up and begins touring the scene.
Empty seats, glassware, and plates of unfinished food pass in the foreground as Deryck walks. Deryck passes an open air grill looking bored and passive aggressive.
Deryck passes a large pile of unopened presents. He shakes one of the boxes at his ear and throws it over his shoulder. He scoops up the rest of the presents and tosses them into the air. Deryck picks up a piece of cake off a plate and eats with his bare hands as he walks.
Deryck passes by the coat rack. He shoves the rest of the cake in mouth to free up his hands. Deryck begins turning the pockets of the coats inside out looking for change. He finds none. Disappointed, his mouth still full of cake, Deryck gathers the coats in his arms and falls forward. The coat rack collapses under him.
Deryck stands up, munching on cake. He wipes his mouth with one of the jackets.
Deryck walks back towards the banquet table closest to the camera. Deryck climbs up on top of the table and begins strolling across it. We see Deryck from the waist down as he moves. He kicks glasses onto the grass. He steps on a large cake. At the end of the table
Deryck pulls up the tablecloth and steps onto the bare plastic of the banquet table. Deryck pulls the end of the table cloth around his shoulders, as if it were a cape. Glasses, plates, and food fall everywhere. Deryck jumps of the table like Batman. The tablecloth and everything on it is dragged to the ground.
Deryck heads to the bandstand. He picks up the microphone stand and begins to attack the other equipment. Sparks fly. Deryck heads into the courtyard where the ceramic dog sits. Deryck shatters the dog statue with mic stand.
Deryck pulls up the layer of sod. He throws the heap of grass and soil at the over-sized portrait.
Deryck pauses a moment, surveying the scene for other areas to attack. Our camera trucks left until the gasoline for the open air barbecue comes into the foreground. Deryck rushes for the can. Merrily, he spins with the can slinging gas all over the tables and chairs.
Deryck climbs up on the far table. He reaches up and pulls down one of the strings of lights hanging above the area. He gathers the light string up into a ball. Deryck swings the ball of lights and crashes them down on the table. They explode in slow motion. Deryck climbs up and grabs a second string. He repeats the same action, but this time as the lights break, the gasoline on the table sets fire.
We close with a shot of the fire spreading across the long banquet table. Deryck returns to the centre of the area. He collapses back into his easy chair to watch the fire.
We will use practical lighting. The party area will be sprayed lightly with a fog machine to add atmosphere.
We will shoot at 2k, 120 fps. The camera will be on a track.
Of Montreal | Sex Karma Listen here...
Mixed Media Freak-out 70’s Animation
We will make a bizarre, loose, 70’s, underground comic, psychedelic montage. The animations will be inspired by the art of R. Crumb. The colour work on the piece will be highly saturated and feature Of Montreal-esque decoration and colour pallets such as sparkles, feathers, loose paint and metallic textiles and saturated colours. The video will be a mix of claymation, cgi and photography. The video will contain nudity and adult subject matter. It will not be suitable for MTV (without blurring) but will have good viral potential on the Internet.
Hump sequence: Amorous men and woman ride on buxom, strong-thighed woman.In the background, 70’s rainbow bursts and colour bars whiz around. Girls being ridden include: Fire girl, roller girl, ski girl and ski dive girl. I’m also open to other suggestions… The R. Crumb drawings will be the starting point, but the characters will take on an original flare once converted to claymation.
Make-out sequence: A looping animation of various animated heads, tongue kissing with one another. Some of the heads will be earnest. Some will be weird. Some surreal. Make out couples include catman + catgirl (Fritz the Cat), a mariachi in a sombrero + a tourist lady in a sun hat, an old Lady + a lemon meringue pie-face, two sea urchins kissing, a black crow pimp + a pig police officer, a nerd + his 8 bit computer screen girlfriend, a man with alopecia + a lady sasquatch with big tits, two horses, a skull head + a pile of worms and two perfectly round twins.
Breast sequence: A montage of breasts from different female creatures [white breasts, black breasts, freckled breasts, old breasts, hairy breasts, spiked breasts, lizard breasts, skeleton non-breasts] As the chests appear on the screen, they are embellished with glitter and sequins.
Eye Sequence: Close-ups of giant cartoon dilating eyes, insinuating orgasm.
Other weird image loops appear during the songs choruses. A dominatrix steps on the crotch of a masochistic bald man. The man digs in his pockets for money to keep the woman torturing him. He pulls out wades of lint, dry clean tags and corroded coins.
Two homeless men spoon on subway grate while being sprinkled with Christmas snow.
A girl rides a seesaw with a boy lying underneath it. The girl kicks herself up into the air and crashing the seesaw down between the boys legs repeatedly, crushing his junk. He loves it.
Approximate Production time: 8 weeks
SUM 41 ~ Baby You Don’t Wanna Know (version 1)
Rejected 05/28/ 2011 What they made instead...
We would like create a music video, with the feel of a behind the scenes rock documentary, cataloging a tour of Toronto’s night life, but with a surreal twist… The band will be followed by a furry black beast everywhere they go.
Serious, with silly undertones. Like a Coen brothers movie or a Herzog doc.
We will use hand-held camera work and the footage will have a raw, grainy, 16 millimeter look, with a vignette. The furry black beast will be a man in a fur suit, similar to the way Chewbacca was handled in the Star Wars films or Barkley from Sesame Street. It’s mouth parts will be puppeteered.
Inside a cheap hotel room, Deryck awakes from a nap and heads to the bathroom to wash his face. He notices Steve, hunched over the bath-tub covered in soap bubbles. Steve moves to the side and reveals he’s washing a huge furry black creature, with glowing multicolored eyes. Deryck doesn’t react as he’s used to seeing the furry black beast every day.
Deryck exits the bathroom. The door to hotel room opens and a female press agent enters pushing a room service cart, loaded with Tacos and Jarritos Soda Pop. Jason enters behind the agent carrying a large bundle wrapped in brown paper. Deryck sits down and eats some taccos. Steve and the furry black beast exit the bathroom and join Deryck for the meal. The furry black beast is toweling off. He wraps the towel around his head like a turban.
Jason hands the paper bundle to the dog. The furry black beast opens it. Inside is an exotic looking fish. The furry black beast pulls the fish apart and eats it politely.
Jump cut to a ride in a van-cab. Deryck, Steve, Jason and the furry black beast stop to pick up Tom from the street corner. Tom looks pleased until he opens the van’s sliding door and sees the furry black beast. Tom looks suspiciously at the furry black beast as if he’s resentful. The furry black beast just pants peacefully.
Jump cut to the studio. The furry black beast is playing guitar, shredding fast and hard. Jason, Deryck and Steve are blown away by his talent. Tom looks on jealously. Angry, Tom leaves the studio.
Cut to a shot of the band playing a small live show. The furry black beast is on stage playing lead guitar. A small gathering of bar flies move to the beat, various old women shower attention on the furry black beast. Tom looks on from the shadows jealously.
Later, the band and the furry black beast visit the rock bar Bovine Sex Club. Deryck and the gang chat with the owner. He looks distraught. The owner leads the band and the dog to a small hidden room behind the bar. Inside, hunched in a chair, sits a middle aged woman holding a bag of ice to her eye. She’s weeping. She reveals a black eye. Someone has attacked her. She points to her office wall. On the wall is wooden sword wrack with a missing sword. A dusty silhouette of a sword is all that remains. Deryck, Steve and Jason look to the furry black beast. The furry black beast approaches the bruised woman. The dog’s eyes begin to glow brighter than before… In a flash, the woman’s bruises disappear. Steven, Deryck and Jason look on with awe.
Suddenly the sound of broken glass startles everyone in the office. The 3 guys and the furry black beast head back into the bar and find Tom is there with medieval sword. Tom looks upset. He’s swigging the sword and smashing beer bottles with it. As the song concludes, the dog monster approaches Tom. Tom flinches. He considers attacking the dog creature… until their eyes meet. om and the furry black beasts are drawn together as if their about to kiss. Before they touch, the screen cuts to black.
Cut to black
Sum 41 ~ What am I to Say (version 2)
Rejected 06/01 2011
Band footage inter-cut with steam-punk robot imagery, shot in black and white. Similar vibe to Fritz Lang’s Metropolis.
Sum 41 will be shot in black and white sitting in an industrial-looking room filled with scrap metal. Members of the band will be shot in various ways interacting with the machine parts they’re surround by.
We see an unusual grave in a field of tall grasses. The footage is black and white and grainy, like Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. The grave is a pile of white stones overgrown by weeds. The grave marker is a small tree made out of twisted wire. The tree has corroded metal leaves and strange fruit growing on it. The fruit looks like glass light bulbs. The entire tree looks to be covered in some kind of dark grease.
One of the bulbs falls from the tree and is immediately swallowed by the soil. The soil on the grave begins to seethe and expand. Tangled weeds on the grave recede and the white stones roll away. The soil parts. The body of a mummified woman is revealed. Her face is shrunken with age and she has two large moth cocoons attached to her eyes. Lying across the woman’s chest is a small robotic dog. The dog looks amateurish, cobbled together, and rusted. In time lapse we see the woman’s face restored. The woman jolts up, gasping for breath. The eye cocoons split and two large moths fly out from them.
The woman climbs out from the grave. As she does, she notices the robotic dog. The dog has a hole in its back where one would expect to screw in a light bulb. The woman picks up the machine.
Cut to the woman walking along the side of a gravel road in the middle of nowhere. She’s dragging the robotic dog behind her on a leash. The machine is bouncing off the gravel like a tin can being dragged behind a wedding limo.
The woman finds a weathered looking barn. She enters, still dragging the dog behind her. The interior of the barn looks to be the same place where Sum 41’s footage was shot. The woman finds one of the grave tree’s bulbs lying on a work bench. She screws the bulb into the dog’s back. The bulb illuminates and the dog robot begins to mechanically shuffle across the bench.
Further on in the space the woman spots what looks to be a humanoid robot. The woman picks up the illuminated dog robot, to cast light on the discovery. The humanoid robot is a mass of twisted wires, gears, and steel, some eight feet tall. The woman is startled by something touching her back. She drops the robot dog, and its bulb explodes. It lies motionless.
The woman turns around and feels the arm of the humanoid robot. Its long skeleton-like arms are reaching out lifelessly from the darkness.
We notice that, in the dimness, the woman’s blouse is glowing.
The woman backs away from the arm right into the torso of the humanoid robot. As soon as she makes contact with it, a row of metal latches spring shut around her body. The woman struggles. The large robot begins to move. Its monstrous head tilts into the frame. The robot eyes its new power source. With a skeletal robotic finger it opens the woman’s blouse a few inches. Her chest is pulsating with a mysterious while light.
The large robot moves out of the barn into the daylight, the struggling woman bonded to it. The two characters move through the field at increasing speed.
The woman’s fear turns to exhilaration. As the track finishes the robot and the woman fire past the open grave at great speed.
Cut to black.
Art Collaboration with Lee Stringle and Melissa Fisher
The portal was a video box inspired by the nickelodeons of the 19th century. The portal had a 4 inch peep hole that looked in on an HD video screen within the box. A thick glass lens installed in peep hole allowed the viewer to see all four corners of the video image by simply shifting their gaze. In addition, the lens also distorted the video image similar to a fun house mirror. The box was constructed by builder Melissa Fisher and decorated by painter Lee Stringle.
Conceptually, I thought it might be interesting to set up a video player that only one person could view at a time. In the past I have found that projections thrown on walls in busy venues often get ignored a few seconds after the audience sees them. The intended effect was to create scarcity and a bit of mystery, so that people in a crowd would ask each other “what’s in the box?” The idea was to install the box in galleries and rep cinemas around Toronto, and then have the Portal play various outtakes from my music videos and other strange visual experiments I was unable to sell clients on. Ultimately, the 20 pound video box proved to be too cumbersome to set up on a regular basis. With the advent of iPad I hope to redesign the box to be much lighter, and thus, allow me to use it more frequently.
TEN KENS~ Refined Listen here...
Rejected 9/19/07 What they made instead... Nothing
For ‘Refined’ I want to a make an early 90’s video that complements the early 90’s vibe on the album. What I have in mind is similar in aesthetic to David Lynch’s Eraserhead, except mixed with the old Louis Carrol poem ‘The Walrus and the Carpenter’. My pop-psych stop-motion work will be prevalent. Everyone in the band will appear in the video. *note* though this video is primarily focused on oyster eating very few actual oysters will be eaten (which is too bad because they’re delicious!). We’ll be faking the shots with empty sterilized oyster shells and corn syrup.
We open with a slow moving pan through the graffiti alleys of Queen West.
It’s evening and the lighting is harsh with deep shadows.
As we continue down the alley we come across Dean, sitting on a picnic blanket on the ground beside two women. The three have their heads against the wall and are blowing large puffs of cigar smoke into the
sky in time with the music. They look stuffed. Surrounding the group are a number of party accessories. There’s a small t.v tray, some empty bottles and a metal bucket heaping with chilled oysters.
The camera pans right and finds Lee with his own heap of oysters and lady-friend. We have a super close-up of him splitting one of the shell fish with a shucking knife.
He then delicately licks the center. To his right, his companion is eating much more aggressively. We get a strong, silhouetted profile shot of the girl throwing back the oysters. The clear slime runs down her neck and chest.
We continue down the alley. To the left we pass Ryan. He’s passed out, lying like a rag-doll with his head buried in shells. We continue on. We find Dan loading up a miniature wheel barrow with ice. He’s wearing a pair of industrial rubber gloves. Beside him is a huge fat man - cropped so we can only see his belly. The fat man hands another sack of oysters to Dan. Dan, halfhearted, splits the sack open with a knife and dumps the shells into the barrow (barely paying attention). As he casts the sack aside and heads back to refill his band mates’ platters, we notice a label on the side of the bag marked “EXPIRED”.
We jump cut to Dan shoving the oysters out of the barrow with a scoop. He tosses a few more Ryan’s way even though he hasn’t moved an inch. Quickly we cut between Dean, Lee and the girls all chowing down.
Suddenly everyone begins to feel ill. As we examine Dean, who is slouching and slack-jawed, we notice that
the girl beside him (who’s blurred by the depth of field) seems to have been mutated. Dean turns his head to look at her; as he moves the girl comes into focus and immediately returns to normal. He shifts his attention to the second girl on his other side. The same effect is repeated.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the ally, Lee continues to eat but with more craziness in his eyes. We see a wide shot of Dean looking back and forth at his slouching, sickly women, before cutting to Lee again.
Next we see a first-person view of what Lee is hallucinating. His companion’s head has been completely replaced by a giant oyster shell. Lee stares intensely. Her huge shell parts in the centre. A litter of clear slime pours out along with a thick tentacle.
We cut back to Dean’s terrified eyes, then cut to his girl friends. The top half of their faces have been replaced by oyster shells. They’re looking at one another, stroking each other’s arms. It looks as if they are about to lean into one another for a kiss. Just as they come close enough, the shells on their faces pop open, dumping slime and exposing their fat oyster tongues. The two begin French kissing with the oyster tongues. Dean does his “metal” scream.
As the build in the song begins, the fat man from earlier arrives on the scene, flanked by Dan. We pan up and see that he’s a huge walrus man. He licks his lips as he surveys all the tasty oyster heads in the ally. He begins to stomp down the alley. Dean looks terrified and hides behind the kissing oyster girls. Lee looks excited, Dan is unamused and Ryan is still passed out.
The walrus reaches Lee’s former companion first. He thrusts his head into her shell and begins to eat her. Slime pours everywhere. We cut frantically between everyone in the scene. Dan continues to walk around serving more and more oysters, oblivious to the goings on.
The walrus makes his way over to Dean’s oyster twins and separates them. As Dean recoils in horror, the walrus takes a girl in each arm and begins thrusting his head at each of them, biting them in turns. We cut between everyone once again. Dean is in the fetal position, covered in slime, Lee is spooning his shell-head girlfriend (stroking her shell) and Dan’s still tossing oysters at everyone. The walrus goes back and forth, biting the twins rapidly as the song peaks.
We end with a fall away shot of Dean screaming. Everyone around him appears to be human and passed out. Lee is stroking the head of his girl who’s lying on the ground. Dan is heading away with his wheel barrow.
Cut to black
What they made instead: Nothing