Friday, June 29, 2018

I Never Minded Standing in the Rain

This post first appeared in my e-mail newsletter, I WAS BIGFOOT'S SHEMP, which you can subscribe to in the sidebar.

A weekend ago I wrapped for real and for true on THE GIRL IN THE CRAWLSPACE.  I wrapped principal in March but had just a handful of pickup shots--a newscaster on a television, a dream sequence cowboy, a therapist on a telephone--that I thought I would pick up in a weekend or two, then it turned into the coldest April in Indiana history (followed by the hottest May in Indiana history) and other projects got in the way and suddenly it was June.

Most of the good moviemaking advice I could give I got from other people before I started--the number once piece of great advice is "feed your people"--but the advice I learned for myself was, schedule every shot and don't think you'll just pick them up later.

A movie where the love of spaghetti westerns plays a huge part has to have a dream sequence cowboy, and nobody fit the bill better than an actor whose real name is Joe Kidd just like the Clint Eastwood movie.  It was also incredibly helpful that he owned this western outfit pictured here, which he wore in another movie I wrote, CALAMITY JANE'S REVENGE, as dream sequence Wild Bill Hickok.  Watching Joe bad-ass around rural Ohio made me want to write another straight western right away (where he could play a living person).

In my movie he plays Lucky, who I really wanted to call Tex after Tex Willer, the famed, long-lived star of Italian comic books.  But I ended up calling him Lucky after Russell Hayden, who was part of one of the greatest lost feats in contemporary b-movie history when he made six westerns in thirty days (I have written an essay about it here).  This feat was definitely my inspiration for writing three movies in six weeks for director Mark Polonia last summer that could all be shot more or less together with more or less the same cast.

THE GIRL IN THE CRAWLSPACE is winding through post and I am slowly, slowly noodling on what might be next.  More news soon.