Archive for October, 2009

Semi-Silent Note of Protest – “The Box”

Posted in Funny Stuff, Personal/Creative on October 29, 2009 by joeylabartunek

Ugh,  you know, I (fairly) recently wrote and directed a short film called “The Package” about a mysterious box that changes the lives of those it comes into contact with for the worst.  And it didn’t have Cameron Diaz, which in my book is a huge plus.  But that doesn’t mean I have an opinion on the soon to be released “The Box”.  Fuck, I dunno,  It looks like the genre version of ‘Indecent Proposal’.

So to those out there, all of whom don’t read this anyway making this all just a pointless release of aggression – stop asking.

Thanks.  Heh.


Black to Pen ‘Doc Savage’ Pic

Posted in Film with tags , on October 26, 2009 by joeylabartunek

Oh this makes gets me all ten shades of excited, from Dark Horizons:

Acclaimed action film scribe Shane Black (“Lethal Weapon,” “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”) is set to pen the film adaptation of the Doc Savage comic book series.

Because Man of Cocoa Butter wasnt nearly as intimidating.

Because Man of Cocoa Butter wasn't nearly as intimidating.

Black tells AICN that the story will be an original one (rather than an adaptation) that will attempt to encapsulate the feeling of the whole collection of author Lester Dent’s work (encompassing nearly 200 stories).

The character, an adventurer with near-superhuman skills and intelligence, was originally published in 1930’s pulp magazines and Black says the story will be written for that time period and will include the Fabulous Five (five recurring companions who each appeared in different books).

Star Trek” and “Transformers” scribes Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman are set to produce.

There’s so much good stuff in such a small article I’m not sure I even know where to begin.  Oh I know, Shane fucking Black?  Doc fucking Savage?  Produced by the Fringe guys?  Excuse me while I take a geeky moment to calm myself down.


It’s too bad I didn’t hear about this sooner, my friend Jennifer hung out with Black for a bit at the screen writing expo last week, I would have made her grill the bastard for info regarding this.  Oh well, C’est la vie.

An Afternoon With The Dead

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on October 25, 2009 by joeylabartunek

I’m a huge fan of the Mexican Day of the Dead aesthetic, something ingrained in me early on from a love of the macabre, Oingo Boingo, and waaay too many hours spent wandering the underworld in Grim Fandango.  But up until yesterday I had never had the opportunity to go check out one of the festivals in person.  So it was a treat to head down  to the Hollywood Forever cemetery, as grand a necropolis as I have ever seen, for it’s annual Dia de los Muertos festival.  This was my first trip down to the cemetery as bad luck had sideswiped all the other previous chances to go,  and I had never witnessed the grand festival in honor of the dead,  so this was as good a chance as any to knock out two birds with one stone.  It certainly didn’t disappoint.

Trillions upon trillions of skulls, bones, candles, and flowers were used to construct the beautiful altars to loved ones and famous folks buried at the cemetery.   On top of the displays, traditional parades and some fairly good food made the whole event something awesome to behold and experience.  Here are a few stills taken of the event and for those curious enough, the rest are loaded up over at Flickr.  Enjoy!





Lego Nirvana

Posted in Funny Stuff, Uncategorized with tags , on October 22, 2009 by joeylabartunek

Check out this cool as hell video of a Lego Buddhist temple, courtesy of Boing Boing:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Lego Nirvana“, posted with vodpod

McKean Adapts ‘Cages’

Posted in Comics, Film with tags , on October 22, 2009 by joeylabartunek
A graphic novel masterpiece.

Try reading this thing when yer 13...

Dave McKean’s last outing in film ‘MirrorMask’ didn’t live up to what I had hoped it would, but it was a hard project to begin with and I cut a lot of slack.  I’ll always have a soft spot for McKean, his covers for The Sandman were masterpieces and his twisted collaboration with Grant the Morrison on ‘Arkham Asylum’ did wonders to corrupt my young mind when I first read it (And every goddamn time since then too).  So I am a bit curious to see how he handles adapting his solo graphic novel ‘Cages’ to the screen.  From Coming Soon:

One project that McKean can proudly claim as completely his own is the ambitious serialized story “Cages,” which appeared as individual issues sporadically through the ’90s before being collected into a single volume by Kitchen Sink and NBM.

It was a very personal introspective piece of work involving creativity and cats and up until now, there was never any word of it being adapted into any other form until McKean made the following statement on his Twitter feed:

“Great first meeting about Cages film; a long term possibility, but good to know all interested parties are on the same page.”

Rage Cages

Rage Cages

Obviously, this project is very much in the early early stages, and one would think that bringing the challenging graphic novel to the screen would probably take many years to write, finance, etc. but fans of McKean’s artwork and collaborations with Gaiman over the years surely would be interested to see whether “Cages” is even possible as a film. While the graphic novel is seemingly out of print, one can often find it in hardcover and paperback forms through eBay, second-hand bookshops and the like.

I only vaguely remember ‘Cages’, but I remember it also being a difficult read and visually very, well McKean so we’ll have to wait and see.

Turn Around, Turn the Volume Down

Posted in Personal/Creative with tags , on October 21, 2009 by joeylabartunek

The fog of war is slowly lifting.   Sometimes in life, the enemy batters your walls, towers start to crumble and you have to reassess where the battle is headed and whether or not you can holdout until reinforcements arrive.  Lately it’s been one of those times.  For awhile I felt like I was losing the battle, my defenses had gone to shit, the wall guard was down at the local tavern drinking swill and fondling the serving wenches.  Which was highly unacceptable.

The financial situation got pretty ugly for awhile there, with no job prospects and bills climbing, I did what I’m traditionally known and derided for, which is pull back up in to the shell and start battling the apathy and ugliness of being a poor shithead from the inside out.  On the one hand things have begun to mildly look up.  I’ve been hired on, in the loosest sense of the term as an official assistant editor back in the land of DW.  You would think this is a good thing, and on some levels it is, at least on paper.

Before I moved out of the cesspool I came from, I laid out my plans, school for a hard year, then work my way through the system until I achieve the rank of Assistant Editor, where I’d sit for a couple of years, hopefully moving from job to job improving, while writing and hustling through personal projects until I could become a full fledged editor on something that isn’t just some instructional video or short that my friends and I busted out.  It doesn’t sound like a great title, what with the ‘assistant’ part attached, but in reality this is a fairly big thing, AE’s in this industry make good money by the standards I’ve always lived by, and getting the title on my resume means I can start rising above the mire and inevitably establish what will become of my life out here.  But the truth of the matter is, the work is still so sparse that I’m only being called in to work a couple days a week.  Don’t get me wrong, I really needed those few days a week.  The slight breathing room it allows me is wondrous, and because technically I am official (bastards gave me keys and everything!) I don’t have to try and hustle for work anymore.  Freelancing had become a serious chore and mental drain on me;  I suck at handling clients, and I suck worse and juggling a trillion jobs, especially when none of them pay me enough to actually get by.  I’m far too easily distracted by things like shiny objects and XBox controllers to effectively function as a solo unit.  I know this is a shortcoming of mine, but I feel better knowing that I accept it and try to work around the problem.  Sorry, got sidetracked.  See?

Unfortunately, the solution hasn’t really started affecting day to day operations.   The job feels like a carrot currently in front of my head, I call up every morning, hoping there’s enough work for me to come in, but in the meantime, there’s no official “Your permanent!” speeches going on.  And while everyone I’ve talked to agrees that it looks good, I have issues with promises.  I just want something official so I can relax and pray the money comes in on time before some repo asshole start taking my things.

But it’s not all vapid promises and hard late night work.  I’ve learned an immense amount of information even in my short time.  I can cut picture with the best of my lower end contemporaries, it’s something I pride myself on.  I know the avid, I’m fairly fast, I understand and can integrate editing and storytelling concepts.  But I lack skills on the technical end.  Now as an AE, I’m learning the decks, cabling, outputs, and all of the million crazy details and requirements of the television post-production world.  And, I’ve done work for some fun stuff, things for the History and Learning Channel, which while not the latest, greatest horror flick or Lost or something, is still fun as hell.

So I’m keeping my fingers crossed.  I just realized, speaking of editing that I have to get out of here and go do some.  Come back later today for the next half of the update, the non-AE related stuff!


Posted in Funny Stuff on October 20, 2009 by joeylabartunek