Filmmaker's Journey :: Life After My First Short Film
So it's been in the planning phase for a little while, but I'm happy to announce our first event as part of "Bringing Cinema 2 Kids" coming up this Thursday, Oct 21, 5pm at Gertz High School in LA. We'll be screening 'Dada Ji' and giving away a copy of the DVD to each child in attendance!! Can't wait to let you know how it goes...read more...
Check this one out...we're going to make it happen!!
Just the other night the movie 'The Terminal' was on TBS...a loveable film starring Tom Hanks and Catherine Zeta-Jones, and also the first time I saw the charismatic Kumar Pallana. In the movie Kumar plays Gupta the Janitor and coins the phrase, "Do you have an appointment?"
So the story goes like this...I saw Kumar Ji (I say 'Ji' at the end of his name as a sign of respect in the Indian culture), so I saw Kumar Ji in the film and literally met him one week later on another film shoot. I was so engaged by this elderly gentleman who sort of this comedian-magician-Yoga Guru all in one type.
We didn't really stay in touch, but for the next few months I wrote and re-wrote the script for what became 'Dada Ji' and when it was ready I finally sent it over, along with a letter explaining that I was a student, I knew he had worked with greats such as Spielberg and Wes Anderson, but I would be honored to work with him.
He called literally the next day - and the rest is history.
Funny how life works...sometimes those golden moments just come to you, and when you feel like you've happened upon one, all I have to say is, go with it! I hold this film very close to my heart, I replay the events of the making of this movie and I realize it fate who played a big hand in pulling it all together.
I finally saw Inception on Sunday evening....and so glad I did! If you haven't seen this movie yet, for one, you should, and secondly, this blog entry will have some spoiler alerts, but I'll do my best to keep it vague (but understandable).
You know how there are movies with big twist endings like, say, The Sixth Sense, and its satisfying because you never saw it coming...but yet there is a clear definitive ending. Well (beware...slight spoiler alert), Inception also had a twist ending...which was done in such a subtle way and it leaves the ending open to interpretation. Some may say that the main character was still in a dream world at the end, and others might say, he was able to let go of his dream world and come back to reality.
But either way, here's what I got out of that very last moment of the film...as the movie is about reality and false reality, even when we wake up from a dream and find ourselves in this reality...this world, our family, our friends, our job, our career, our house, etc, all these things we become so attached to, none of it is permanent....so is it even real? What then, is reality?
And I think that's the big question of the movie...
I really like films like this that get you thinking, it's not everyone's cup of tea, but this film was really intelligently done. The only big question I had was, why did the main character go on this journey in the first place if, in his real world, he had the wife, kids and career he wanted? That question was never answered in a satisfactory way for me...
But aside from that, I loved the visual effects of this film. Leo did a great job, and director Christopher Nolan was brilliant. Definitely worth watching in the theater, and if you can, IMax it!
In a world where independent filmmakers are distributing their films online and trying to make a living doing so, it might not make much sense that I decided to give copies of my movie away for free.
Yes, that's right, I'm giving away copies of 'Dada Ji' for free. Now, let me explain.
A few years ago, when 'Dada Ji' screened at the Los Angeles Children's Film Festival, and when I heard the children (these were like 7 year-olds, mind you) laugh at the jokes, I realized that this movie resonated with kids. That was a big Ah-Ha moment. When it screened at Comicon in San Diego, at the Q&A, a young girl asked me how hard it was to be a filmmaker. Another Ah-Ha! I realized two things: 1) kids like this movie, 2) maybe, through this movie and through my experience as a filmmaker, I can inspire people to pursue their goals and dreams in life.
So we're embarking on a journey...
We've already sought out, and continue to seek out various non-profits that encourage, teach or mentor kids to be all they can be! I don't know how many DVDs we're going to give out...maybe 50, maybe 100, maybe 500. I don't know, but I want this movie to be seen, I think kids will like it and I want to give them an opportunity to ask a the filmmaker any questions they wish.
But, the truth is, it wouldn't really be possible to just keep giving away DVDs, I am kinda hoping there are people out there who might fall upon our website and decide to buy a copy...that would help us to continue to be able to give them away. What can I say, I believe in karma :)
Lupe, who also works with me, has lined up an event coming up in October, we're supposed to go to downtown LA and meet some high school students, screen the film, Q&A, and give out DVDs...stay tuned!
Oh, and that's our team by the way...Lupe, Ben and me, Sabina....every time I say 'we', now you know who I'm talking about. Great to meet you...we'll have another update soon :)