I know no one is reading this, but I feel like I should update it anyway.
I’m about to go to sleep so I can get up early and begin shooting Anil’s new movie The Strange and Unusual. Once we wrap up I have to grab all of my stuff from the house and head over to set up the first ever public screening of I Am Worthless.
The only thing that needs to be finished is music I own. The movie is full of the Beach Boys, T-Rex, New Order, Biggie, and a long list of other music I could never afford right now. I missed all the festivals, so I’m going to work on it more and hope to have a finished movie with music by Chris Gervais done in the next few months.
It’s been a pain the ass editing a feature. I should’ve been done over two years ago, but it just sat for a number of reasons. It’s been this huge weight hanging over me. Every time I start a new project—which is way too often—I feel guilty that I still have this massive project looming. Everyone who helped has either been extremely patient or they’ve forgotten the damn thing exists.
I’ve been working on a full trailer that actually shows some footage and gives an idea of how the movie feels. I’m hoping to have that done a lot sooner. This new feature is going to eat up a lot of my time, as is my new full-time job doing graphic design work and shooting/editing photos and video.
Obviously I haven’t kept up much with this blog. I was hoping it would be a document of everything I went through as a first-time director, but at least I got some of that. If I had stayed with this, there would be three years of me feeling like a failure, a waste, and a loser. A lazy sack of shit. An over-privileged and lucky asshole who does nothing but complain. But I saved anyone who would happen to read those meanderings.
I’m happy with the movie. It’s hard to gauge it because it’s something I wrote over three years ago. It was a story I had to tell at the time, but probably wouldn’t be very interested in committing this much time to now. It’s small and it’s dorky and it is filled with amateur mistakes and aspects of filmmaking that I feel much more confident with now.
I originally wanted to write something that was almost completely dialogue based so that I would get over my crutch of avoiding characters speaking for long stretches in everything I had written before. My scripts were so image-heavy and I was scared to let anyone speak because I didn’t feel comfortable with how it would come out. I feel very positive about the success of this goal. I’m not scared of dialogue anymore. The first couple drafts of this script were close to unreadable, but I feel like there are some moments in there now that do feel genuine. Hopefully people will like the main character. He’s very much who I was three years ago, and I’m not eager to admit but maybe still some of who I am today.
I also wanted to just make a feature. Plain and simple. I was twenty-three and knew that if I waited until I got money or had some sort of break, I would be waiting for an incredibly long time. I wanted to just get something out there. Get the first-movie anxiety out of the way. I’m not always the most motivated person in the world, but I am typically very good at setting up and following through with production. It’s what I do, and it’s what I want to do. It would be nice to have the money for more time, for more equipment, for the ability to not lean so hard on friends and family for support. We’re getting there.
I wish people were getting to see this movie when I first made it; when it was what I was capable of making at that time. My camera work has come a long way since this one, as has a lot of aspects of my writing. But, for me, there’s a charm to this movie. It cost me almost nothing (and still somehow almost broke me) and was just an excuse to hang out with friends and somehow be productive.
I shouldn’t have named the movie I Am Worthless, because the title taunted me every time I did something other than edit. How many books have I read instead of working on this movie? How many shows have I watched or movies have I rented? I hung out with friends, worked, went to trivia or karaoke or to see bands play. But it’s done now.
For better or for worse, it’s about to be out there. I may update with a post-screening announcement that I need to go hide under a rock, but there I have the advantage of this being a time capsule. Even if everyone hates it—and I really don’t think they will—it’s what I could do three years ago. It was great, as well as a nightmare, to shoot and I loved every minute of it. There are a lot of personal things in the movie, but my only goal now is for people to find it entertaining.
We’ll see. Wish me luck.