Monday, March 11, 2013

Help a Filmmaker: The Crystal Crypt

A couple of days ago I was contacted by young filmmaker Shahab Zargari, who has recently started a fundraising campaign to shoot is dream project; an adaptation of Philip K. Dick's The Crystal Crypt. Few things warm my heart and get me as excited as the idea of new voices arriving to shake the film world, so I decided to let Shahab tell us a bit more about his movie in order to capture your imagination and maybe get you to help out in this interesting project.

What attracted you to this story? Have you always been a fan of the author?

I've been a Sci-fi nerd my entire life. I gravitated toward Philip K. Dick early on. He’s one of my favorite authors in the genre. I hadn't read this story until 2012, and was amazed at the execution.

You mention Hitchcock among your references. Elaborate a bit, what are some of your favorite Hitchcock movies and how has his work inspired you?

I love Vertigo and The Birds. But in relation to The Crystal Crypt, the Alfred Hitchcock Presents TV show really resonates. Those were all 20+ minute short films, many with unforeseen twists at the end. Not quite as out there as The Twilight Zone, but still very intriguing "stories with holes". The way He would direct each piece was amazing because he would keep the audience in a shroud of mystery before the big reveal. Amazing stuff.

How has the process been? Has it been easy to pre-produce sci-fi?

It's definitely a long and hard road to create a film of any genre, but sci fi is tricky in that there is a fine line between super cheesy and super alienating (pun intended).

How do you expect people to react to this short movie?
I hope it allows them to escape the issues and comforts of their own lives in order to analyze the real-world issues from an arms length. But mostly, I want sci fi fans to enjoy it completely.

Why should people invest in your project?

Something I just found out about today: Section 181 deductions have been extended through the end of 2013 to help keep filming within the United States. Section 181 basically allows up to 100% of the money
invested to be deducted from one's taxes. That should be reason enough! Become a movie producer and have the IRS pay you back! The rewards you get for your pledge will be icing on the cake! More info
can be found on Google or here:

You can donate money for The Crystal Crypt by visiting this site.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Ten Reasons Why I Love This Shot:

  • It's always the first thing I remember from this movie, going all the way back to when I first saw it as a child.
  • Judy conveys such precise emotions in it: longing, sadness about leaving Oz, something that recalls pure ecstasy too.
  • The superimposition is so symbolic! You have shoes within her head, as if to warn us that everything involving the shoes, hence this journey, was always inside Dorothy's mind. She's also divided, as if her two sides are fighting to stay here (lose her mind in the process?)
  • The spirals remind me of Vertigo. Was Hitch a fan of this?
  • The sound that accompanies this scene seems to have inspired endless movies afterwards. The jingling became synonymous with thought processes.
  • Judy's hair looks fabulous!
  • Coming from one of the most moving moments in the film, it's surprising to see how as a director Fleming made it possible for us to switch from emotion to emotion so easily. Sadness, fear and hope are contained in a few frames.
  • I often find myself reenacting it while waiting for the subway.
  • It allows the movie to shine on a technical level and shows how groundbreaking it was in terms of special effects and color cinematography.
  • It's awesome when you're high (or so I've heard...)

This post was part of Hit Me With Your Best Shot, hosted by the wonderful wizard Nat.