Hometown Love

July 11th, 2010 § 0 comments § permalink

Zach here. Last Saturday was the hometown premiere of Bummer Summer. It happened to fall right in the middle of the afternoon on one of the nicest days of the year thus far, so I’m impressed that anyone showed up at all. The theater told me that they counted a bit over 100 attendees, and indeed as I stumbled through one of my clumsiest, most at-a-loss-for-words introductions ever, I was humbled seeing the turnout from up front. And then this played:

It was the world premiere of the newest and full-bodiedest trailer for Fresh Starts 4 Stale People, and it was weird.

And then the movie played. In a way, this was the audience that had caused me the most anxiety. It wasn’t just a festival crowd, a mass of anonymous faces. Almost everyone there was either family, a friend, or associated with at least one of the two. They weren’t necessarily “film people”, either. They weren’t there to say “oh, how very reminiscent of so-and-so that scene was” or, “what an interesting reference to such-and-such, I wonder if it was intentional.” They were there to see a movie, not unlike Hot Tub Time Macine (which played later that night), and to see what this guy they knew had been investing all of his time and Facebook activity into. My closest friends from way back were there, people who had been around throughout the entire production, and yet they really had no idea what to expect and I was sure that if they didn’t like it then they wouldn’t want to be friends with me anymore.

I didn’t stay to watch the movie, but I did spend almost the entire time putzing around the lobby with the exception of a brief lemonade-inspired trip to a cafe across the street. At around the 35 minute mark, I listened in on a scene that’s generally pretty useful for feeling out the audience. I was surprised, it was the loudest, most enthusiastic reaction to the scene I’d ever heard. There were cackles and guffaws. I even heard a single, stray clap, which warmed my heart.

What I’ve been getting at, in a very roundabout way, is that the screening went well. Not to cheese-out or anything, but I was reminded of a beautiful, prophetic Truffaut quotation that I found on someone’s Myspace profile last year while screwing around on the internet in lieu of pre-producing my movie:

“The film of tomorrow appears to me as even more personal than an individual and autobiographical novel, like a confession, or a diary. The young filmmakers will express themselves in the first person and will relate what has happened to them: it may be the story of their first love or their most recent; of their political awakening; the story of a trip, a sickness, their military service, their marriage, their last vacation…and it will be enjoyable because it will be true and new…The film of tomorrow will not be directed by civil servants of the camera, but by artists for whom shooting a film constitutes a wonderful and thrilling adventure. The film of tomorrow will resemble the person who made it, and the number of spectators will be proportional to the number of friends the director has. The film of tomorrow will be an act of love.”

Finally, the Kickstarter page for my new movie has come to a sort of a standstill as of late. The big thirty-day push is coming up fast. Please help spread the word! E-mail, Facebook, Twitter, Digg, Tumblr, telemarketing, whatever… It all helps.

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