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Milton Keynes & Me 50 Years in an evening

7 Sep

Hey Mediadreamzers

God it has been practically years since I lasted posted. I have been waiting and waiting for my next media related event to happen, and now it has.

Some of you many have seen on BBC 4 a few weeks back the film titled Milton Keynes and Me by Director Richard Macer. I admit I was kicking myself for missing it when it was on TV, but had a second chance to see it when a screening of it was arranged, followed by a Q &A session with the Director himself.

For those of you haven’t seen Milton Keynes and Me the story is told and see through the eyes of Richard Macer who grew up in MK and left when he was 18 to go to University. With it being 50 years in 2017 that MK was created, Richard returned to his hometown to look back into to how MK was created and established as a New-town place, the Fred Roche Foundation which was responsible for the planning and constructing and houses, shopping centre and sculptures depicting the creativity and uniqueness of MK. And yes that includes reference to the cow sculptures created by Canadian Liz Leyh. It was cool that Richard was able to track Liz down and ask her what she thought 50 years on from when they were placed in MK.

The beginning of the film looked at the memories of MK through the eyes of his mum and dad and how MK was the UK’s equivalent to the American Dream when it came to the housing crisis that hit London in the 1950’s and 60’s. One other aspect of MK that was shown and talked about was when people think of MK besides the cows that they comment on the number of roundabouts and there is one thing I discovered whilst watching the film and that is that there is a roundabout appreciation society, something I never knew existed until that night. Following on from that there the society has given certain named roundabouts and one of the roundabouts in Fox Milne is known and named as a bonking roundabout because it was a roundabout where people used to make love and have rendezvous. One thing that is being added to Fox Milne roundabout soon is a sculpture, commemorating 50 years.

I also discovered that years ago a commercial was created advertising MK as a New-town haven and what was memorable about the commercial was that there was a boy carrying a red balloon and how everyone at the end had balloons and let them go. I admit when I saw the red balloon at first my mind immediately ran to thinking of Stephen King IT. It also got my thinking whether to not it would be possible or a good idea to make an updated commercial on what MK has for people to see. There was a generation aspect to the film where Richard headed to his old school where he talked to the current students at Stantonbury Campus. I did not know that there was something called ‘Day 10’ where students spent to entire day focusing on one subject. Would be interesting if schools today could bring that back, might make a difference.

Granted there was some negative moments in the film, that was probably down to when it was shot (Jan/ Feb) when it isn’t exactly scorching like Ibiza. But you need somewhat of a place in a film to make it work.

At the end there was the Q&A with Richard with the help of his friend and many people got to share their views, saying whether they liked it, hate it, what they thought would have been nice to have included. One thing that was somewhat annoying was that a member of the council was there and I felt that he was using it as a self promotional platform on what he could do to make things better or changes to bring about if we/ people get in touch with their local Councillors. At the eventual end I got the chance to meet and speak to Richard and share my thoughts on the film itself.

It is nice to be back on the grid of sharing, and the good news is that there will be a follow up as tonight I am off to a red carpet premiere at the Vue, Leicester Square. So I am getting all dressed up and hopefully get the chance to meet the actors and catch up with some of my media friends.

My work as a Gallery Production Assistant is going very well, and my next series of freelance opportunities are happening in the next few weeks that I am looking forward to.

Nunquam Deditioneum.

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Media; Moments & Making things happen

30 Mar

Hey Mediadreamerz

OMG where does the time go these days? Can’t believe it was over a month ago that I posted anything. But it’s been a fun few weeks so now I have time to sit and type away. My other reasons for this are from baking for the last so many weeks; Red Nose Day, socially and I’m still baking and have started making Easter eggs for work and friends. As I mention RND regarding work it was fun and interesting going into a production company on that Friday wearing red cosplay wig and getting a combination of ‘I didn’t recognise you’, ‘Red hair suits you’ and ‘You should wear this and other wigs to work more often’- That last comment IS tempting I admit.

For those who are curious as to what the wig looked like, here is a shot; please feel free to comment on what you think on that.

I was glad last month to be having a break in Paris for a few days and seeing a lot of media out there was very interesting to observe and speaking French too was great especially using certain phrases; Can I have a lawyer who speaks English, Where is the British embassy, I’m drunk, I’ve lost my wife (not that I need to really use that one but it’s funny to know. Amongst those phrases, I did learn others.

Once back I got straight into media work most of which is related to my job itself, I’ve spent part of my holiday days off work WORK work-shadowing in the Production Gallery and from the past 5-6 days doing this I am starting to get the hand of everything that is going on.
There is also the upcoming 48-hour film challenge that I am hoping to be getting involved in and also hopefully a film called the Mask of thorn next month which is gonna be great working with people I know and haven’t worked with yet.

I am happy to share that next month I am going to the premiere of 2 films I worked on one in London and the other in Romford which I am looking forward to and already have my outfits for those nights. The film in Romford is called Borstal, and it is on sale now, and the other is Cain Hill both of which were awesome experiences. So I will be looking forward to blogging about those nights.

Most current experience to share is being at Elstree Studios at a Creative England for the launch a something ProConnect event. As you have heard and seen that Elstree is known for TV shows like Pointless, Big Brother, The Voice just to name some nd with films like Paddington Bear, The King’s Speech, The Danish Girl and much more.

ProConnect is a program that supports creative businesses, freelance individuals, entrepreneurs. Offering workshops that cover topics like Government tax breaks and incentives, Marketing, Funding, etc. ProConnect is covering two regions; Manchester and Hertfordshire, so people in the North and the South are covered. It was interesting to hear what they offer media companies and freelance individuals and having received an email on what workshops that are happening from Summer to Autumn, so that’s something else to look forward to.

Once Easter is over and I have distributed my continental Easter treats and Easter Eggs I will be back on track to work on films and other activities for the Summer.

Nunquam Deditioneum

MKFN Meet up

18 Feb

Hey Mediadreamzers

My latest post is more local than capital based. Yesterday was the monthly meet up with film makers and media people. And as there were only a few of us it was a sit around a table and discussing ideas planned for that night.

One proposed topic idea discussed was a film challenge project, similar to the 48HR challenge that usually happens Summer/ Autumn time, but this one was and is going to be a challenge to submit scripts and after read by a panel of ‘judges’ to pick the best one and have everyone at the table and those that couldn’t attend, help make the film and submit it to festivals, both local and international. Questions were asked and views were expressed at this point amongst other things, but I think when dates and outlines are established for submission deadline is made then that might get underway.

The follow-up topic discussed was an potential idea that I wanted to share with everyone, and the idea was having MK set up/ establish a TV channel via YouTube or Free-view. Although I learned that others have tried to do this and it had fizzled out. After discussing this for quite some time, everyone thought that it would work and that if I wanted to go for it to go for it; one idea was to get locals and others who thought it might work to share their own videos on a media channel. I only hope it works though the general agreement was to have an internet channel and take it from there.

The final topic was again festival related but discussing events coming up in the Summer and arranging the means to film the dance and artistic performances of those in August/ September, and how many wanted to avoid be pushed out of the festival by others and not getting a chance to showcase their work. Although it got heated but not aggressively heated, at least we all have things to plan and work on ready for next months session.

So lots to do and plan for in the coming months, and hopefully this will kick off when I am back from Paris next week, and I’m hoping that my French is good enough; I’ve learnt certain phrases like Can I have a Lawyer that speaks English, I didn’t do it and other greetings to use.

Nunquam Ddeitioneum

Having a Hollower of a time

14 Sep

Hey Mediadreamzers

Its that time again to share another media moment, this is another networking event. Normally these events are generic films or discussions but tonight was a showcasing of a horror film some of my friends had worked on. Granted it isn’t Halloween for well over a month (and there being costumes and candy in shops right now) it was something to look forward to. Once at the venue it was catching up with people who I usually meet at these events before the film started. The film being shown was called Hollower, and the quick plot on it is. This was followed with a Q&A with the director MJ Dixon and one of the stars Nicholas Vince, the name might ring that metaphorical bell as he is known for appearing in ‘Hellraiser’ the first film and second.

Here is a trailer of the film

As I don’t want to give too much away encase anyone wants to buy or if anyone comes across this film I’ll try to summarize best I can. The film focuses on a guy called Nathan who at the beginning of the film is in a police interview room, covered in blood. The detective inspector, (Nicholas Vince’s character) enters the room and begins asking Nathan questions (as you would do in an interview room). The begin discussing events that have happened in the last 24 hours, and Nathan having no recollection of what has happened tries to piece events together, going back over his daily routine in the build up to meeting his new single female neighbor. Most of the reconstruction falls into the theme of groundhog day; doing the same things every single morning, but the rest of the day is unplanned and unpredictable. During these moments Nathan’s character experience strange things happen; a sketchpad is always on the table no matter how many times it is put in a draw and a picture of him with his mum as a child is always facing down. It is also established that Nathan has Agoraphobia; fear of open spaces, so his life is dedicated by this fear.

We later learn that Nathan and his neighbor form a friendship which later becomes a relationship, Nathan is happier than his has ever been, and from there on everything changes…. Well I did say I wasn’t going to give too much away, that would spoil everything. The film picks up pace and from the moments where you question what has happened or why something occurred no doubt there is gonna be a follow up (this was answered during the Q&A session- YES, I asked the question).

 

Following the film the questions came so the game of ‘pass the mic’ started and I played along with a few other people. Whilst I was waiting for the film to start I got chatting to 2 new people and I learned that one of them is involved in media, unfortunately I can’t remember if she said she used to or still works for the BBC. Afterwards it was great to talk to a few people, especially MJ and Nicholas before leaving as the venue was closing up.

 

My next event is gonna be in about two weeks and I am so psyched about it for numerous reasons; it involves going back to my second home-Pinewood Studios and an licence to be unbelievably wowed and starstruck, for really. So in under two weeks I am gonna be ‘home’.

Nunquam Deditioneum

Shoot, Create, Screen

24 Jul

Hey Mediadreamzers

Two posts in two days, that’s a first but as promised a follow up from the last one. Only this one is more to do with the Film Festival events that has been sweeping up and down the UK, in a nutshell the 48 hour Film Challenge.MKChallenge. So the mission which many people chose to accept was to shoot a short film in the space of two days and to submit it for the event within the set deadline. This was all part of the International Festival Fringe of Summer Shorts; one could say this is our equivalent to Cannes minus travelling abroad.

Summer Shorts

I was surprised at the number of people who turned up a mixture of those who worked on the shorts and those supporting the films themselves. The films running order stood thus:

The Interview – Directed by Adam Jeayes Comedy with a double meaning in the title

Marmeladas – Directed by Rosemary Hill that means Cheese which language I can’t remember

Five Pound Note – Directed by Ana Diego Silent film with only background noises.

Spirit Cleanser – Directed by Julie Cuthbert

West Ham, Farewell Boleyn – Directed by Roger Stotesbury I really enjoyed this documentary and I’m sure those who are West Ham fans would too. Got to speak to the director on this film too.

Product Placement – Directed by Ana Diego focusing on the issue of trafficking

First Response – Directed by Carl Mason Zombie police film

Silently Within Your Shadow – Directed by Scott Lyus a Ventriloquist’s dummy that comes to live and has a connection with the Ventriloquist. One thing that surprised me was that people were asking me was I the Ventriloquist in the film because the actress who played her had the same hair color and length as me. Was flattered but not pretty enough to be an actress.

In Tents – Directed by MJ Dixon Thriller by a director I know very well and it does make you jump out of your skin.

Avant Macabre – Directed by John H Shelton

Nightman – Directed by Kieran Johnston

The Night Walker – Directed by Michael Hallett

There were some films that were creatively done, a genuine thinking outside the box short and then there were 1-2 that once you watched them you thought what the hell that doesn’t make sense or was just awful no doubt about it. Overall the night was great seeing something on screen and as I sat there a film idea for a short came to mind whether I suggest it to someone and it gets made for the next shorts festival who knows.

Hopefully more media activities to share soon when the next is I don’t know at all.

Nunquam Deditioneum

The Tide is Hard, but we’re hanging in there

10 May

Hey Mediadreamzers

Hard Tide

 

Time to post another blog post on media activities, and I thought I’d start of a networking event, well the first one to go to this month. This event was a Q&A session with the director of a recently released film called ‘Hard Tide’. This is a film that stars two actors who I am friends with on Facebook and see from time to time at other events. The Director has worked in a variety of roles ranging from Producer, Writer, Actor (yes his CV and IMDB is from the sounds of this very impressive).

 

I won’t give too much away on ‘Hard Tide’ encase you are still waiting to see it but the film is based on real events and centres on a man who comes to care for a little girl when he is trying to escape a life of drugs and drug dealing. As any film you watch where children are starring in it there are moments where you laugh and smile at what is being discussed, and yes there were moments. After the film, once all the credits had rolled  the Q&A session opened up; most of the questions ranged from time taken to shoot the film to where the best ideas come from one making films, along with a multitude of others asked. I also had the opportunity to speak to the Director afterwards, mentioned the actors and people I know who starred in the film, as well as passing on one of my business cards; I never leave home without them, even if I’m going to the supermarket.

Q&A

 

Q&A 2 Q&A 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was also great to catch up with people I have seen at these events in the past, and finding the status of films I am hoping to get involved in pretty soon. Hopefully the next event will be as exciting, or when my next media opportunity will be something soon as I am eager to get into a production. I also wish my friends luck and success out in Cannes as the festivities begin tomorrow.

 

Nunquam Deditioneum

MK Media Networking

9 Feb

Hey Mediadreamzers

Its been quiet on my side of the computer screen; was in a road collision a few weeks back and have been in the process of recovering and getting car fixed. Now back on track, and the first thing to share with you is my first networking event of the year; MKNF. This being a monthly event held for filmmakers, actors and anyone who works in Media.

When I got to the venue I thought it had been cancelled as the shutters to the doors going in were down, to only realise that the networking night was across the way in another gallery. Once inside and others had arrived it was a case of saying hi and striking up a conversation, with a few ice breakers along the way. I and others who attended took the opportunity to meet and network, I especially got to meet people I am friends with on Facebook who live in the same district/ region as me. I went prepared; a tree stump of business cards at the ready to hand out. When it got started the guy who had arranged the night noted that there were a few me people, specifically me and I had to go first in introducing myself. I asked if I should stand up and some of the guys joked/ suggested that I should stand on the bar and introduce myself, oh the wit of many and yes I did laugh at the idea.

This month’s event was a mixture of video clips covering different aspects of filmmaking, such as acting, directing and editing, all featuring professionals from the industry; specifically from BAFTA. These were delivered interviews from Idris Elba, James McAvoy, Jim Broadbent, Alfred Hitchcock, David Lynch and my favourite was from Andrew Lincoln from the ‘Walking Dead’. During Andrew’s interview he revealed how he had to change his last name, under the advice of his agent as the agent said his last name ‘sound like something out of Lord of the Rings; Clutterbuck (what a name). There was also a video clip called a Recipe for Disaster on what you need and is part and parcel of making films, which many of us can and could relate too. We cracked jokes about that; I notice there was not enough emphasis on booze, nothing on swearing or anything on smoking as it is stressful at times.

When I walked back in I felt great having met so many people who are in the same industry as me and fingers crossed I get to work with some or even all of the people that I have met tonight later down the line this year or in the foreseeable future. Well that goal/ challenge is gonna be on hold for a week as I am abroad for a break, a break abroad that I haven’t taken in, wait for it, 11 years. hopefully the people I have met face to face rather than just on Facebook and others who are not on my Facebook get the chance to work together this year or next year on upcoming productions, only time will tell.

Nunquam Deditioneum.

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