I first started developing screenplay scripts for my “Do Ask, Do Tell” material in 2002 while still in Minneapolis, shortly after my “career change” had started with “The Layoff”. I often attended a screenwriting seminar in a local college building on Hennepin in downtown Minneapolis, where we did table readings for some of our materials. Some scripts got selected for formal table readings, as at the Jungle Theater near Lyndale and Lake St., or sometimes in one of the theater auditoriums in Block E on Marquette.
I did get one “film” shown at the Flaming Film Festival in May, 2002, shot on a Sony Camcorder. It was called “Air Raid” or, alternatively, “Bill’s Clips”, and runs about six minutes. The simplest way to present the films is to give the first link, here all the way through “airraid4.mpg” and also “plane2.mpg”. The idea is that someone is walking on the streets near the University of Minnesota campus when an apparent enemy attack starts. Post 9/11, it was pretty effective. The festival was sponsored by Intermedia Arts in Minneapolis (on Lyndale)
Once I came back to Arlington VA, I took at least two adult education classes in screenwriting offered by the public school system (small tuition), taught by Carolyn Perry. I started renting films from Netflix, and the very first film I watched this way was “In Praise of Love” (“Eloge de l’amour”, 2001), a New Wave film in two parts by Jean-Luc Godard. It’s interesting because of its birfurcated, two-part structure, black-and-white and then color, the second part occurring before the first (as opposed to “beginning, middle and end” in conventional screenplays). The film is meta-styled and layered, about an author’s making a film about several couples, including a particular person with connections to the past connections to the resistance in Vichy France. It seems scattered rather than tightly focused, and that’s an idea that comes back in my own work.
I’ll add that on a cold Saturday in early 2002, I tried out for a part in the short film “The Retreat“, by Darin Heinis, in which some allied soldiers at the Battle of the Bulge encounter ghosts of Germans, and other supernatural artifacts. I almost got a part of one of the Nazi ghosts. I’m not sure what to make of that. I would eventually see the film at Bryant-Lake Bowl in Minneapolis at an IFPMSP monthly screening party.
This train of thought, regarding my scripts, will continued soon.
Published: Sunday, March 2, 2014 PM 4:50 PM