Monday, January 17, 2011

Moving along with the Ghostkeeper

After a week of indecision, apprehension and just not wanting to write, I finally settled on what has to be done first.

And that's Ghostkeeper, which, if you read the last blog is almost as sure as a sure thing can be. At the very least, Ghostkeeper 1980 will be re-released by late summer, maybe in time for the Deer Lodge hotel reunion which the hotel managed told me about, wherein every living employee who ever worked there were expected  to attend. 

And my cast, crew and myself were also invited.

If it seems odd to attend a reunion where I made a horror film, remember, I didn't ask, they offered. And truthfully, Ghostkeeper is more cerebral than gory.

So today, Monday, I officially started the Ghostkeeper project which includes the following:

1. Sign and mail the distribution contract for Gkpr 1.

2. Notify the British horror magazine writers who wrote great reviews of Gkpr 1 as well as interviews with me.

3. Began writing an outline for Gkpr 2 to be followed almost immediately with the screenplay.

4. Begin looking for funding partners in the U.S. along with tax credits and/or incentives from Canada.

So here's what a few people thought of Gkpr 1:

"Ghostkeeper is one of those gems that are hard to come by but rewarding when discovered"
"The acting is solid and the atmosphere of fear and total isolation is well-captured."
"A film I recommend to all true horror buffs"
"One of the better 80's horror films; the storyline is original and the atmosphere is creepy."
"There's a feeling of dread so thick you could cut it's bloodied heart out with a knife".
"The imagery wedges it's way under your skin and sets up camp there."

 How's that for compliments? And I do agree with the creepiness of Gkpr 1, but admit the screenplay was not great, my first one,  as well as having to compromise the ending due to budget constraints.

But then there's also these reviews: 

"I don't know what this movie is about because there is hardly any story... even at the very end you don't have a single clue what was going on there."
"Quite possibly the worst film I've ever seen."
"This has to be possibly the worst-acted film I've ever seen."
"The whole film is a long build-up to nothing." 
"An awful screenplay, laughable performances and a copious lack of flesh, a sorry piece of trash that should be avoided at all costs."

 See what I'm up against?

The best thing is that the good reviews are quite long and detailed, while most of the bad ones are a few sentences. And I'm going to use all the criticisms as my guide to the new screenplay for Gkpr 2, even incorporate them into the dialog in some instances.

In this way I can not only come up with something that has suspense and a sense of humor but also write a way better screenplay than I did 30 years ago. And this time I won't be forced to cut back the ending due to lack of money.

While I am going ahead with Gkpr 2,  at the same time, I will do short 3-page outlines for my two series ideas as well as the same for the two Christmas stories. Once the Gkpr screenplay is finished I will throw myself into both Christmas stories in order to have them ready to show by the end of March or April. Just in time to hopefully sell one or the other in time to film in late summer.

In the same way as Town that Christmas Forgot was filmed, in the heat of August yet when viewed you'd think they filmed in December.

What I hope to illustrate here is the randomness of screenwriting, the ability to turn your world around and force you to choose a direction that came up unexpectedly, even if it might be harder and to leave behind that which isn't as solid. And even if it might have been the wrong choice.

So hang around a little more, see what happens in the next 2 months.
 (Thurs: The new Ghostkeeper)