It’s been quiet around here for quite some time now, but don’t worry, we’ve been quietly working on “The American Backroom” in the background and news will be coming soon. Also, we’ve been developing a couple other projects and one or two of them just gained monemtum over the last couple of months, meaning that they consumed more and more of our time.
Now, here’s one of these other projects: ASTERNAUTS. A sci-fi comedy short film in Austin, TX, by a fantastic young director: Marta Masferrer. We’ve met Marta at the Berlinale Talent Campus in February, a section of the prestigious Berlin International Film Festival, where she was a finalist of the Berlin Today Award producers pitching session with her project, meaning she pitched it to ten producers from Berlin, including us. We immediately fell in love with ASTERNAUTS, not only because it is one of the best comedy short film scripts I’ve ever read, but also because it is set in the same America that we also like to explore with “The American Backroom”. A perfect match, so wie picked it. And Marta picked us as producers.
Long story short: The film will be shot in early September in and around Austin, and we are also providing full post production in Germany at the end of the year. It’s our goal to get it finished on time for a premiere at next year’s Berlinale! But we still need a little push from you to get it made: We have just launched a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter to close our final gap in financing. Please take a look at the campaign and become part of something great! We have some fantastic rewards for your pledges, and you can also support us by sharing this campaign to your family, friends, co-workers, anyone… Please tweet us, facebook us or even google+ us We very much appreciate any contribution towards ASTERNAUTS and thank you so much for your help!
It’s been a full year since we’ve first pointed you to Yves Marchand’s and Romain Meffre’s fantastic photographs from the ruins of Detroit. About two weeks ago the british Guardian ran a great story about their work and their book “The Ruins of Detroit” (amazon affiliate link), including an image gallery with a number of photos that haven’t been seen online before. You should check them out!
After Werner Herzog’s 3D documentary another legendary German filmmaker brings you a highly artistic 3D film for art house cinemas: Wim Wenders’ PINA.
This is going to be unlike anything 3D that came out of Hollywood so far. It’s dance film and documentary and all in all a beautiful homage to the late Pina Bausch, the famous choreographer of the Tanztheater Wuppertal. Check out the trailer below! Unfortunately in 2D only, so you have to imagine what it looks like in the depth of a 3D screen… I’ve been lucky enough to see bits of it in 3D already and I can assure you, this promises to be an amazing piece of film art that beautifully and expertly explores the pairing of stereoscopic filmmaking with movement in space as created by the dancers through Bausch’s extraordinary choreography. And with another art house 3D film coming to theaters it’s also paving the way for more highly artistic 3D content including our 3D doc “American Backroom”. So tell your friends and be in line when the film hits 3D screens in early 2011.
As every one visiting this blog once in a while may have noticed, abandoned and decayed places are undeniably a subject of interest both for our writing here as well as our proposed 3D documentary film. I’m always so fascinated by the eerie atmosphere and the haunting memories these images provoke. Just like filmmaker Teddy Smith, obviously. He took a tour of Six Flags New Orleans which has been destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and has never been reopened. Check out his beautifully shot video below. The park is scheduled to be demolished in early 2011.
Here’s a captivating blog by Steven Hirsch: Crustypunks. Pictures of and interviews with homeless punks he met at Tompkins Square Park, East Village, New York. Snip from Wikipedia: “Crusties is a term for members of an urban subculture, with roots in punk and grebo. The term pre-dates crust punk and can be used independently. The trend was most widespread in the UK in the late 1980s and early 1990s but there are also international subsets. Crusties are noted for their unkempt appearance and are associated with road protests, squatting, raves and begging.”
Flipping through the blog you’ll hear life stories like this one:
I’m a product of the American foster care system. My mom’s a Czechoslovakian whore and my dad was a sand nigger. His name was Ahmad something or other. I grew up in the foster care system till I was three. So I woke up one day and I was fucking fifteen years old, ran away from the fucking group home. Decided it was in my best interests to become a crack head on the streets. And spent the last two years losing my mind in Oklahoma City. – Ketchup
Or this one:
I’m also a vampire. I was born and raised into vampirism. I was thrown out at a early young age from my family and everything by some wicked church people, satan worshippers or something. All I remember is I’ve been into it since I was born. I speak about eleven or twelve languages when I’m drinking. Not really right now. With the cancer setting in right now because of the heat and everything, just kinda like can’t think right now. Doing my own chemo. And I got a prescription for it, somewhere here in Manhattan. I just gotta go pick it up, if I could remember where the address is. I’m thirty seven. I’m not crazy. I’m not insane. I’m not stupid. – Jeremy
For more of these exciting portraits head on over to Crustypunks…
Tom Lowe creates timelapse photography. Of rocks. Canyons. Clouds. And Light. And what he creates looks so utterly fantastic that you have to watch it with your own eyes. In his blog he writes up on the strains of shooting and all the technical challenges he has to deal with during production. And I am so not surprised that along the way Tom expresses his sincerest admiration for filmmaker Ron Fricke. I can only and truly underscore his words.
An now, let’s close our eyes for a moment and imagine shots like this on a big screen in a darkened theater. In 3D. Especially in 3D. And we will get a slight idea of the direction where THE AMERICAN BACKROOM (at least in parts) is going to take us… Mark my words
American Ruins in 3D! That sounds almost like a scene from THE AMERICAN BACKROOM… or rather like a photo project by Matt Bergstrom. He’s creating three View-Master Sets of abandoned buildings in decay.
“American Ruins” is a three-dimensional, photographic series exploring unusual, abandoned buildings — like a candy factory! — to be viewed on an old-fashioned View-Master. Both an exploration of architectural history and a fun throwback to childhood, backers will receive their very own View-Master viewer and a complete set of reels!
Matt needs a little financial support to get things started so he launched his project on Kickstarter: American Ruins in 3D! How cool is that. Definitely worth our support. Click the image below to check it out: