Saturday, November 3, 2007

Here's the proposal that we sent out to the crew recently

Disembody, the sixth portal in the 23 Entryways Into My Mind series

Proposed for installation in July 2008, but hoping to shift to August or October, 2008

The Museum of Viral Memory is proud to announce that we have established a movie studio, 23E Studios, as part of our plan for self-destruction through global infestation.

23E Studios first production is a movie to be shot and shown over the course of one month. The location for shooting and showing the film is Fringe Exhibitions Gallery, located in Chinatown, Los Angeles. As part of the film, the gallery will be open to the public for 10 days. The film, as yet unnamed, but tentatively entitled Disembody, will be the sixth portal in the 23 Entryways Into My Mind project.

Disembody will be an 81 minute documentary produced for distribution worldwide. Disembody will premiere in Fringe Gallery and will initially be available in an edition of 13, packaged in functioning architectural models for viewing on a 1/16th scale. These models will play the DVD of the movie on a tiny screen and be appropriate for gracing collectors' coffee tables.

A crew of two camera people, an editor, a director, a web designer and a producer will be hired to help create the film. They will digitally videotape the construction of a theater (naming rights are available for a reasonable donation) in the gallery over the course of seven days. They may also record the opening night party, which will occur the night before construction begins, if that can be arranged. (This evening event is dubbed Day Zero, in the parlance of the film. Days One through Seven will be the construction days.) A rough cut of the 81 minute version of the film will premiere on the evening of Day Seven, in the completed theater.

Fringe Exhibitions Gallery is a storefront in Chinatown. It includes a fully functional basement which will be converted into 23E Studios. This will happen the week before construction of the theater begins. The editor will have a workstation in the basement to edit the film and dailies as footage is shot. The web designer will be uploading and managing a dedicated website ( for the project in RT from the basement, as well. A soundstage for recording a soundtrack will also be in the studio downstairs.
The film will be continuously changing before the gallery visitors' and webviewers' eyes.

This crew and all their gear will be hired by The Museum of Viral Memory. They will be professionals working in the film/TV industry, primarily in Los Angeles. Currently we are speaking with

Producer: David Lockhart, an actor and producer in LA, with several films under his belt

Editor: Elise Irving, an artist and documentary editor based in Orange County

Cinematographer: Amy Sampson, an artist and filmmaker based in Santa Monica

Cinematographer: Marcella Faustini, an artist and filmmaker based in San Francisco

Director: Chadwick Rantanen, an artist and filmmaker based in San Francsico

Fringe Gallery and Susan Joyce will be credited executive producers.
As will be all investors in the film. Investors will also receive souvenirs from the film. And as a true Hollywood enticement, investors will get points on the film's backend. For every $1000 donated, investors will receive 1/50th of the gross of Disembody. To date 23E Studios has raised $10,000 of the estimated $30,000 budget. Our first investor in Disembody we are proud to say is The MVM's close friend Carson Murdach.

Janet Stott is the 23E Studios entertainment lawyer, drafting contracts and clearing every aspect of the film's production.

Our web designer is Jonathan Grindstaff, the incredibly skilled programmer who created the backend for, available soon at fine art galleries everywhere.

A soundtrack of incidental music will be composed over the seven days (and the rehearsals hopefully streamed live to the website) by the band oRSo.

Also in the basement will be a confessional both, as we have become accustomed to from reality TV. The confessional booth will feature a live feed to the web. As well, it will record to the editor's hard drives. The confessional will be a place where the MVM crew, Fringe staff and any visitors to Fringe can go to speak directly to the camera and express their feelings and thoughts away from the harsh glare of the movie's cameras, its audience and its crew. These confessions will be available to the editor and director for inclusion in the final film.
These moments will be archived on the website, as well.

All staff at Fringe and The MVM, as well as all personnel working on the film will be required to sign a release form.

As well, a statement will be posted at the front door of Fringe, notifying all visitors that by entering the premises they are agreeing to be videotaped, and their likeness and voice are the film's to use as we please. This statement will obviously be coordinated with our producer, lawyer and Fringe Exhibitions.

The project will be heavily promoted and advertised, in hopes of attracting as many people to the gallery during the shooting/construction period as possible.

As part of the promotion, all of the people who show up during shooting will be listed as collaborators in the work's production. They will also be listed as extras in IMDB. The project will be listed with Variety and other production/entertainment digests.

The theater is being designed by Lee Pembleton, CEO of 23E Studios in conjunction with an architect. This is currently 23E Studios' biggest challenge. Our initial architect , Ted Rzad, who we have worked with closely in the past, has had to step into an advisory capacity due to unforeseen circumstances beyond our control. We are speaking with a second architect to step into the breech, but have not nailed down anything solid yet. This is our number one priority, as the marketing department needs professional sketches, 3D renderings (sketchup or cad or the like) and other fantabulous visual baubles to entice the next round of investors.

The contractor we have signed onto the project is David Gurman. As with all the personnel currently signed on, David has worked with The MVM in the past, and demonstrated devastating dedication and skill in his fields. We are also excited to announce that our number one investor, Carson Murdach, may be involved in the construction, as well. But before you get the idea that Disembody is just a chance for wealthy collectors to slum in helping to create a work of art, let us point out that Mr. Murdach is a highly skilled wood worker with a long history of employment in art installation.

Fringe regularly works with a set designer in Hollywood who often assists their artists in building structures for the space. We do not have this gentleman's name yet, but he may be available to assist with construction, as well.

With the assistance of the incredibly gracious and talented Yosh Han, the theater will be subtly scented with a limited edition aroma crafted specially for the space. Bottles of this signature scent will be included with the catalogs and DVDs sold. A small number may be available individually, as well.

The catalog will be an edition of nine, and will be created by The MVM near the end of the project. The catalog will printed by A. Maciel Printing, a family owned, environmentally conscious printer The MVM has worked with before. The catalogs will be bound by another MVM regular, Pettingell Bookbindery.

A making-of featurette has been started. This will be available on both the limited edition DVDs and the commercial DVDs of the film. Cast and crew bios, a stills gallery, trailers, Spanish and other language overdubs, subtitles, and cast and crew commentaries will also be included on both DVDs.
Finances allowing, the premier and the subsequent two days will be documented for the bonus section of the DVD release, as well.

The Space Itself

As currently envisioned the gallery's ground floor will be partitioned near the front door, creating an intimate theater lobby. Here guests will be able to purchase catalogs, DVDs, soundtrack CDs, scent, candies, sodas, hot dogs, popcorn, etc. All will be boxed in signature edition Disembody packaging, created especially for the theater. Cobalt Industries has been commissioned to screenprint many of these products. A. Maciel will print the others.

With luck an MVM pinball and arcade may be available, as well.

Behind the lobby will be a curtained entryway. Through the curtain will be a short passage of stairs and a second curtain. Through this second curtain will be the actual Theater. Guests entering the Theater will be passing through the bottom of the movie screen, emerging from the film itself, if you will.

Facing them when they emerge will be an expanse of comfortable bleacher seating. The seats will be cushioned and upholstered. The riser element will be mirrored. This will reflect the film back at the entering guest in fractured horizontal bands. The seats themselves will be clear 1/4" plexiglass.

The guests emerging from the film will emerge onto the theater stage. At either side will be a flight of stairs down to the floor. This floor will be carpeted and include cushions to accommodate any viewers who wish to watch the film in the mirrored surface of the seats rather than on the bleachers.

The current pitch for Disembody is:

Slackers meets Extreme Home Makeovers

The current schedule is:

September-December 2007

Find backers for the film.

Find designer for overall Disembody experience: catalog, packaging, promotions, etc.

Find a promoter.

Find company to purchase naming right for the Theater.

January-April 2008

Re-examine model and plan based on funding generated by the end of 2007.

Begin production of Disembody items: t-shirts, candy boxes, drink cups, popcorn bags, DVD packaging, CD packaging, scents, etc.

Reconfirm dates with crew and prospective personnel.

Graduate from school.

Promote the film.

May-June 2008

Relocate to LA.

Finalize crew.

Finalize schedule.

Schedule deliveries of materials.

Promote the film.

July 2008

One week for install:

take delivery of all materials

build studio/space for audio recording in basement

build confessional booth in basement

set-up editing station and web station in basement.

Day 0:

Opening night kick-off event.

Day 1-7:

Build theater.

Shoot movie.

Edit movie.

Premier 81 minute movie evening of Day 7.

Day 8-10:

Each day should feature three or four showings of Disembody.

One week for de-install:

Discard of everything not sold.

Prep time capsule with ephemera and how to.

Congratulate selves.

Start re-editing Disembody for festivals and distribution.

Start sending Disembody to festivals.


Catch up

No the pictures aren't relevant. But a blog with pictures is more enticing, isn't it?

Okay, so we migrated to linux. That took longer than anticipated. Plus we were thrown out of our offices by our hateful landlord. It's temporary, 4-6 weeks they claim. But it's insanely disruptive to get 24 hours notice before being put on the street. Since they bought the building a few years ago they've done nothing but lie and scheme and sabotage tenants at every opportunity. I really never have encountered humans as scummy as these folks. Weird, because it's not impersonal. The landlord comes over to the building and treats people like shit. He seems to really hate having people in his buildings.
Anyway, sorry, we've been incredibly disrupted by this, so we're a touch angry. We've had to move a video studio, a recording studio, a photo studio, our offices and all of our computers for designing databases and websites and other things we do. Our creative world and our professional world were both put on the street until December or January.

Anyway, now we need to catch you up on Disembody.

Janet, our lawyer, is working on the contracts. The hitch there right now is that Susan, the gallerist, isn't able to discuss the gallery's end of the deal until December. So, we're moving ahead with a 1/50th of the gross for every $1000 invested. Essentially we're gambling that she'll go for the offer we made her. This whole project is a gamble on human interactions, and ultimately that's the point of it anyway: making art together, there is no single artist creating Disembody, it is a collaborative work between many people. (We would argue, and will in a later post, that all art is collaborative, but that aspect of the business is hidden away for mythological and commercial reasons)

We can't think of a better way to make art than by working with a slew of amazing people; finding ways to involve everyone so that an entire roomful of people feel exhilarated about what they've made together.

Yosh, our perfumist, is thinking about a scent for the architectural models. Something popcorny and sweet. We're very excited. Each architectural model will be a working theater in scale. It will play the film. And it will smell like a theater. So faboo.

As well, we'll be introducing two new scents at the concession stand of the actual theater:
Vime for Men, Disembody
Vime for Women, Disembody
Each will be available in a limited edition of, umm, we're not sure how many, somewhere between 13 and 23, we suspect.
They will be captured in handmade bottles. We're pursuing a friend of The MVM to make the bottles. If he can do it, they will be fabulous. If not, we'll find someone else and they will be fabulous.

Time for another picture.

Oh, and more good news, we have a producer. David Lockhart is onboard. We'll finalize something in a week when he gets into SF from LA, but for now it looks very good. We met David on a film we produced. He's not just a producer, but as you'll see if you visit his website, he's also an actor. So we produced him a few years ago and now he may be producing The MVM film for us. He's outgoing, aggressive and charismatic, all characteristics necessary for a producer. He's also connected in LA, another important characteristic.
And he's a rock n' roller. Yup, he sings in a band called The Stereo Blasters. C'mon, you gotta be a little excited about a producer who is in a classic rock band, right?
David is the one in the bottom right-hand corner.

What else? Oh, it looks like Kam can't do the architectural drawings. But a friend from CCA, Airason Heard, is looking at the proposal and may do it for us. Airason is pretty amazing. He's a tech and theory geek with an amazing vision for integrating the human and technological into buildings. With luck we'll be able to post a few of his drawings for the project in the coming weeks.

Once we have Airason's drawings, we'll be getting a brochure printed at our fave printer A. Maciel Printing. It will be bound at Pettingell Bookbindery. We are thinking a small edition of 7 or 8, so that we have something tangible to give investors right out of the gate. The book itself will be a work of art with bios of the folks involved, plans for the project, early behind-the-scenes footage, ephemera from the project thus far, etc.
Marcella Faustini and Elise Irving will be designing the brochure with us.

Finally, I have an incredibly exciting lead on what might be some serious funding accompanied by a distribution deal. Yeah, I mean, it's just hearsay at this point, so I'm not going to say more, but it's going to be so super exciting if we get a chance to pitch these people. It's actually incredibly exciting just knowing that opportunities like this are already appearing. Our spirits are high today.
And atop that, one of our LA contacts has a few investors ready to talk to us when we are down in Tinseltown come December.
So, all is coming along well.

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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A Brief Interruption of Service

Hello Linux World.
We switched all of our servers over to Linux last week. During the migration we had to hold off on the uploads. But there is much to talk about.
If this test post is copacetic then I'll put up a full update later today or tomorrow.