Sunday, 5 October 2008

Cool live stuff...

Okay, this isn’t necessarily writing related, but I have done some cool stuff worth talking about the last couple of evenings. For what it’s worth, I think doing things other than watching films (i.e. going to gigs and seeing shows) is a good way to recharge creative energy. Doesn’t matter whether it’s seeing people perform live or even going to short film nights/festivals and hearing filmmakers talk about their work – the fact that these people produced some art and put it out there always manages to give me a creative kick up the arse and reminds me why I’m doing this. I guess that’s kind of a contradiction as film isn’t live at all and there’s no immediacy with writing a script, but I do think the creative energy that comes off something like that is infectious.

So Friday I went to see the Babes with Blades show in London, primarily to support Cecily Fay who played the dominatrix in Ten Dead Men (and was criminally underused although no one was to blame for that – as well as the problems on set that day the scene in the script was the most difficult to write in the whole thing and was probably the most rewritten, which led to the dominatrix character being practically written out), and also to support Ten Dead Men director Ross Boyask who was filming the show. I went along thinking they’d need as many people as possible to fill up the theatre but I needn’t have worried about that – it was practically full and there was a great atmosphere. The show was fantastic – having never really seen a martial arts show before I had no idea what to expect but they did a great job of making it entertaining as well as technically impressive. And having written a number of scripts recently with lead action heroines it was very cool to see that stuff being demonstrated on stage and definitely helped me visualise some of the scenes in the scripts. I think a couple if not all of the girls have the potential to be the next Cynthia Rothrock, I only hope I get to write the scripts. As much as I love China O’Brien, it does contain a line where the bad guy says to Richard Norton ‘You’re crazy!’ and Richard Norton replies ‘Yeah? That’s how people get!’ If I could go back in time and change one thing it would be to rewrite all the dialogue in China O’Brien.

Anyway, check out the Babes with Blades website here:

It was also a good night because John Rackham who played Axel in Ten Dead Men (one of the main characters) was there. John stayed over at my place during one of the shoots and as a fellow writer and film fan we got on really well, but due to the craziness of the film premier I didn’t get to chat to him much then so it was great to catch up. John has a very cool, if infrequent, blog which I’ve added to the links:

Speaking of blogs, another one I’m adding to the links (mainly so I remember to keep up to date with it) is Neil Gaiman’s blog:

I’ve been a Gaiman fan since the Sandman days, and Death: The High Cost of Living has managed to cheer me up at several times when I badly needed something to do so. Anyway, I was reminded of his genius when Amanda Palmer played a song that he had written the lyrics for at the gig I went to with Andrea earlier tonight. Amanda Palmer was one half of the Dresden Dolls who I’ve been a huge fan of since they started and she has just released a solo album. She has also done a music video for every track, all of which are on YouTube. This is my favourite:

Anyway, it was the best gig I’ve been to in ages. To be fair, that’s partly because I’ve kind of lost touch with new music over the last few years and haven’t been to see that many artists I’ve been this enthusiastic about, but it was everything I always wanted from a gig and never usually got. The music was great and the performance excellent, but it was really bolstered by some excellent theatrics performed alongside the music. And the best entrance I’ve seen at a gig ever – zombie Amanda walking through the audience to get to the stage where her own funeral was being acted out. All very cool. Even better, Amanda stuck around after the gig to sign stuff so we queued up in the rain to see her. Then I got all starstruck and shy and just shoved my ticket in her face to sign then ran away. I'm still rubbish at stuff like that - how I ever managed to string a sentence together when working with Doug Bradley I'll never know. But despite that I came away with the same feeling I had after seeing The Dark Knight earlier this year – it’s great to be able to enjoy something good for a change and not be cynical about it. I enjoyed my rare moment of awe and it definitely boosted that creative energy I was talking about earlier.

So here I am, spending that creative energy on my blog as it’s slightly too late and I’ve drunk just too much beer to write anything productive.

The plan for October is a little sketchy – I mentioned in the podcast I have two projects on the go, my own script and one for another producer that’s been at outline stage for months. The one for the producer has suddenly picked up momentum and needs to be done ASAP, but after a telling off from Andrea about how I keep putting off the personal projects I think I’m going to try and do both, which may or may not be crazy. But, that’s how people get.

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