We’re only four short days away from the first day of principle photography on Cerise, my latest short film project about Josh Kermes, a former spelling bee champion who, 20 years later, is haunted by the word that took him down.
This Script Spells S-U-C-C-E-S-S
As many of you already may know, I’ve been hunched over a somewhat major rewrite of the screenplay, which had been running away from me at 30 pages (pretty long for a short!) For over two months. many fellow writers and filmmakers had expressed concern about the script’s length, especially since it’s primarily a festival piece. I’d brushed off this advice until a week ago, when my good friend and fellow filmmaker Troy Romeo, who’s recent short film 2095 has screened at various film festivals across the world, graciously gave me the honor of his eyes and insight on two drafts (so far) of the script and helped me bring the length down to 24 pages. Thanks again for all the help, Troy! What a difference!
One thing I usually forget to mention to people who read my scripts is that I’m a vertical screenwriter––every line of action is a shot (as opposed to the “three lines per paragraph” paradigm.) If I’d written Cerise in that more traditional style, the script would clock in at 20 minutes max.
I thought I’d share my three goals for Cerise once it’s edited and out in the festival circuit (’cause once you put it in writing, you’re bound by those words.)
(1) Cerise will screen at and win festivals, and someone may ask me to make this into a feature-length film.
(2) Cerise will screen at and win festivals, and someone (a producer looking for his big break) will ask “so, you got a feature?” and I can pull out the latest draft of my vampire feature A Beautiful Unlife and we can finally be on the long overdue campaign to save the America vampire film from its apparent Twilight.
(3) Cerise will win a “Best of category” award at one (or more) Academy Award qualifying festivals, and hopefully that nomination will lead to either (1) or (2). (Best Case Scenario!)
Things are going exceptionally well on the production side of Cerise. My producers Camiren and Kejal have been a great help, pushing the bulk of the production boulder uphill so I can focus on the current rewrite and rehearsals. There’s a good amount of our crew that I haven’t even met yet, so it’ll be exciting to work with some new film warriors as well as some Iron Men of Trigonian short cinema––namely our DP Alain Aguilar and our Sorcerer of Sound Oles Protsidym, one whom I trust completely with telling the most compelling visual story as possible, the other whom I’m sure will get me Hollywood-quality sound at used car costs.
Remember to keep up with all the latest on Cerise via our Cerise Movie Facebook page, as well as our Cerise Spelling Vlog on Vimeo for continuous updates before, during and after production. Marinell Montales is the social media powerhouse behind the majority of the updates and maintenance of these pages and their content. And for further insight into the look and feel of Cerise, be sure to subscribe to Alain’s blog “My Weekly Dose of DOF” to see what’s shaping up within his inner lenses.