Tuesday, November 25, 2008

It's A New Day!

Since I last posted here, Barack Obama has been elected as the 44th President of the United States of America! Hopefully better times will be ahead for this nation economically. I think just by the fact that he has already given 3 press conferences and has started announcing cabinet members in his administration, hopefully this is a good sign that the man means business to change the mess that 8 years of the Bush Administration has done to this country. Okay, that enough from my political soapbox.

I recently read 2 really interesting biographies. One was call "Out of Sync" by Lance Bass (yes, that LANCE BASS). I could never imagine what the world would be like to live in a fishbowl knowing your secret could come out any minute. Despite what some people think of "boy bands", I think it took a lot of courage and bravery for him to come out of the closet. Equally fascinating but by no means boring was the other book that I read "Alone In The Trenches" by Esera Tuaolo! Here is a man who is 300+ lbs, 6'3" and solid muscle and playing in the most brutally, masculine sport there is: Professional Football! His story really got to me, much like John Amaechi's "Man In The Middle" did. Esera played nose guard for several professional teams in the NFL for over 9 years and he, like Lance Bass, lived with the same secret. His story is quite a read and of course, the filmmaker in me would LOVE to make it into a feature film if it hasn't already been optioned! I think Esera's story, even more than Lance's , will make people question how they feel about us, Gay Americans!

Speaking of gay Americans I have to shout out to Miss Wanda Sykes!! I hope she has opened the door for more closeted, high-profile, people-of-color who are celebrities to take the leap and stand up and be who they truly are. I have never met Wanda, however my mother goes to church with Wanda's parents in Virginia. More Power too ya Sistah! Who knows maybe one day our paths will cross either in VA or NY. Wanda came out at a rally, like many staged across the nation recently, opposing the passing of Proposition 8 in California.

I don't want to get on another political soapbox, but I have to say something regarding Proposition 8: Why do people care whether or not same-sex couples get married or not? Seriously? Straight people have the right and often abuse the privilege that is just a basic HUMAN RIGHT OF EQUALITY! My sister recently told me that she doesn't believe in the union of same-sex couples! And should I ever tie the knot with my man (that is if I had a man), she wouldn't come to my wedding to celebrate what could be the happiest day of my life! I interpreted this as she loves me, but with conditions!. To this I can only say "F**K YOU MONICA!!!!" Someone will have to relay this message to her, because as she has never bothered to come and see me in a play in the many years I was acting, nor had the time to take 15 minutes out of her precious time to watch my documentary (however, she has all the time in the world to hang out with her motorcycle "club"), I can tell you that she will never read my blog! Her loss, ignorance is bliss!

Oh, I almost forgot. The other day I was walking from a bar with my friend Paul and we ran into Lee Tergesen and Eamonn Walker from the HBO series "OZ." They were really nice and I was really drunk. I hope I didn't make too much of a fool of myself. Anyway Look for "Kings" coming on NBC in Feb 09. They well be on it!

Well enough about me. Have a nice Turkey day!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I haven't been able to make many entries these past few weeks. Busy, busy, busy. All I can say is the photo says it all. Don't forget that ELECTION DAY is a week from today on NOVEMBER 4! Even if you don't know who you want to vote for yet just remember this: Are you better off now than you were since George Bush got into office?

I've been engrossed in the presidential campaigns and conventions, and most importantly the debates. If you don't think that your vote matters, think again! Because it could be your vote that makes the difference.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Shrooming and Films that Don't Mix Well!

I've been watching a lot of films lately in my free time. Films that I'm either rediscovering or discovering for the first time. I especially like foreign films that are as far away from the American "Hollywood" film mold as possible. But there is something that I discovered that I wanted to share. There are certain films that have been released in the past that should NEVER, and I repeat NEVER be viewed while taking any "mind altering drugs" shall we say? So I've compiled this list that I like to called:
(These films are in no particular order as to strangeness)
  1. Barbet Schroeder's "Maitresse" (1976) Okay I admit I thought GĂ©rard Depardieu was in his bubble-butt goodness in this one, however the horse visceration scene ALONE, is enough to send ANYBODY over the edge. PETA should have been consulted!
  2. Russ Meyer's "Beyond the Valley of The Dolls" (1970) Yes, this was the one that was co-written by critic Roger Ebert. What were they smoking (or dropping) when they made this?
  3. Michelangelo Antonioni's "Blow Up" (1966) I will never look at a mime the same way again!
  4. Pier Paolo Pasolini's "Teorema" (1968) Strange, indeed!
  5. Donald Cammel & Nicolas Roeg's "Performance"(1970) Has to be seen to be believed. Mick Jagger first film!
  6. Dario Argento's "Suspiria" (1977) As a matter of fact, although I enjoy his films, I would avoid ALL of his films while high!
  7. Jean-Luc Godard's "Week End" (1967) I love French New Wave, but this one was truly a head trip!
  8. Walt Disney's "Fantasia" (1940) A definite head trip if ever there was one!
  9. Michael Heneke's "Funny Games" (1997) All I can say after viewing this one, was: WTF? The director made an American remake recently that I'm scared to see after watching the original
  10. John Waters' "Pink Flamingos" (1972) See note for #5. Same holds true here. However don't get me wrong I LOVE his films (must say a lot about me, huh?)and I've seen this one over 30 times already!
  11. Tim Burton's "Charlie and The Chocolate Factory" (2005) See note for #9.
  12. Hideo Nakata's "Ringu" (1998) This one kept me up for DAYS (and I wasn't on anything. I swear!)
Honorable Mention:
The Omega Man (1971) & the remake "I Am Legend" (2007). I was scared as a child watching this sober, you can imagine what the remake did to me with all the advances in computer effects!
Although it's not technically a theatrical release, but a episode from a popular guilty pleasure television series: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Season 4, Episode 10) "Hush"-- I had nightmares after watching this particular episode and couldn't sleep for days after watching it. What were the creators on when they wrote this? This episode was NO JOKE! It worked me better than a laxative. In other words, it STSOOM ;-)

Now although I wouldn't advocate taking any hallucinate drugs (As Mr. Mackey from "South Park says,"um, because drugs are bad, m'kay?") while doing ANYTHING, sometimes prescription medication can mess with your brain just like any illegal or control substance. That being said, if you like films then these films SHOULD be viewed (sober or otherwise). So hope you enjoy these films but maybe put down the blunt before you put them in you DVD player.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Dark Knight & Wendy Williams (Pt. 3)

Of course, I was one of the million's who saw Heath Ledger's final film performance this weekend in the hit film in the Batman franchise, "The Dark Knight". Heath was BRILLIANT as the very dark and very scary "Joker." This isn't Caesar Romero's "Joker" either. Heath's portrayal of the Joker really gave me the heebee geebees. It was a truly moving and terrifying performance which only seems sadden by the fact that never more will we see what many other roles this young actor could have taken. Truly a lost to the film industry. As a filmmaker myself, I will never have the opportunity to work with Heath Ledger. But the film industry was bless with this great actor's performances that will live forever on film.

As for the story itself, it was the darkest Batman, EVER!!!!! I will say much accolades to Christopher Nolan for fine direction and a marvelously written screenplay, as well as to Wally Pfister for his breathtaking lighting. I also have to say that even though Katie Holmes didn't reprise the role of Rachel Dawes for this film, no one could do it better than Maggie Gyllenhaal. Where was she the first time around? Anyway, I think this is THE film to see this summer (Although I'm a big "X-Files" fan, and I can't wait to see Mulder and Skully back on the big screen together later this week.)

Moving on... I have never really gotten on the "celebrity" bandwagon when it came to doing this blog, but I have to put my 2¢ in about a "celebrity" (although anyone who can call themselves a "celebrity" from just being on a reality show- with the exception of American Idol- is beyond me). Okay, so this morning I was watching the first show of the second week of the "Wendy Williams Show" and I was really upset to see how her guest, who I won't even name because it only gives her more power, was such a royal witch to Wendy.

Now for those of you who aren't familiar with Wendy William's radio talk show, The Wendy Williams Experience, she has had some fiery but very real interviews with many REAL celebrities (I'm talking about people with actual TALENT besides being on a reality show, showing the world how much of witch one can be for ratings) that always get to the bottom of things. Besides being the "Queen of the Hot Topics", she has been beacon on the WBLS for many years dispensing advice and information in her own special way. If you don't like, her, then you have the choice of turning to another station. However today's guest on her television talk show, who for someone with such a pretty name, showed a VERY UGLY side of herself today when she started to "diss" Wendy on "The Wendy Williams Show". This evil witch, who I will only say, was the thorn in Donald Trump's side on the premiere season of "The Apprentice", was totally disrespectful to her hostess as she was trying to hock her upcoming book.

My Carrie Bradshaw question is, why do people have to be so "ugly" when someone is trying to help them?

I have to say that through it all, Wendy was the lady that she always is who only continued to treat "the guest" graciously and didn't get back into the woman's face. It really saddens me when I see women, especially black professional women try to live up to the stereotypes that society has labeled them with for so many years. That's why I was so happy to see that Wendy wasn't going to stoop to that witch's level when she insulted Wendy on live television this morning. It was an awkward situation, but Wendy maintained her cool and moved on like any professional journalist would do in her position. It was obvious that this woman came on the show with a big chip on her shoulder looking for a fight. She may have thought about checking out a mirror prior to walking out on that stage, because next to Wendy, she was looking pretty haggard with weave that looked like it was put in by a blind crack head!

Now some men may like to see two women claw at each other with no dignity whatsoever. I, for one, do not subscribe to this. Had this conversation happened out on the street, I'm sure it would have been a different show. However on live television, the hostess was charming and gracious, while the guest was the personification of the word "bitch." Next time that particular guest goes onto a talk show looking for a fight, might I suggest something like "Jerry Springer?" Since she preferred to act like ghetto trash, maybe she would feel more at home on that type of show!!

And yes, there is nothing wrong with your eyes: I did GO there!!!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Wendy Williams: Part Deux

Okay everybody, today I watched the second day of the Wendy Williams show and it was equally as fabulous as it was yesterday if not better. Wendy looked exquisite in her little black outfit. Today she had on Al Roker from the "Today Show" and he is really a character. I really wish I could get tickets to see a taping of her show? I have a feeling that a taping must be a lot of fun for the audience as well as the guests. Much like the time I went to a taping of "Dave Chapelle Show". It was hilarious, but I digress....

Anyway, before I came here to the library to write (long story short: I was piggy-backing my wireless from somebody in my apartment building and they moved out so now I used the free wi-fi at the Brooklyn Public Library-the big one at Grand Army Plaza next to Prospect Park- I'm not cheap, just broke) I listened a little to the Wendy Williams Experience on WBLS. Her guest today was one of my very favorite authors: E. Lynn Harris. He was there to promote his new book that drops in stores today, Just Too Good To Be True. He also mentioned that he has another book coming out in January called Basketball Jones that deals with a guy living in the closet while playing in the NBA. Now anyone who knows me, knows that this is a subject that really interest me after reading the John Amaechi memoir Man In the Middle. I really can't wait to read that book.
I guess the reason why I brought up sports today is because, as I'm sure you know today is MLB All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium. Of course I'm all about anything that has to do with any Yankees. Derek Jeter (will be playing for the ninth time), ARod, and Mariano Rivera will be playing for the American League. I really wish I could be there to watch this package. I mean the teams, not the player's packages. Duh... Okay I wouldn't mind watching the player's packages (I'm a freak like that). Anyway. I wish them well.

How did I get from Wendy Williams to talking about baseball? Oh yeah right, now I remember: I was wishing that I had a ticket (and a date) to go with to the game tonight since it will be the very last All-Star Game to ever be played in the current Yankee Stadium.

Anyway, oh, I wanted to talk a little about the mini film festivals I had all by myself in my apartment this weekend. Since I've been coming over to the public library, I've discovered the "World Cinema" section of DVDs. Over the past few months I've rediscovered and discovered some works by filmmakers who I greatly admire. This past weekend I watched the Three Colors trilogy by Krzysztof Kieslowski. I've seen it before but not on DVD and not with the commentary. As a filmmaker it's an added bonus to be able to hear what the thought process was for legendary filmmakers such as Kieslowski. It also gave me insight into why European films vastly differ from American-made "Hollywood" films. If you haven't the trilogy yet, it's a must for any serious film maker or lover of films. Three Colors: Blue (Trois colours: Bleu) (1993), Three Colors: White (Trois colours: Blanc) (1994), Three Colors: Red (Trois colours: Rouge) (1994) where the crowning achievement to a brilliant career that sadly ended way too soon in 1996 when he died from heart failure.

My other favorite filmmaker that I had the opportunity to study his films is Michelangelo Antonioni. Antonioni passed away last year but was quite a prolific filmmaker leaving behind what is now considered masterpieces of cinema. I watched Il Grido (The Cry) (1957), L'Avventura (The Adventure) (1960), La Notte (The Night) (1961), L'Eclisse (The Eclipse) (1962) and Blow Up (1966) and you know what I learned from watching these film classics? How to speak Italian! Just kidding, I think that the central thing that I discovered was that much like a novel that has plenty of exposition, so is an Italian film. I understand now why such directors as Ang Lee may have been inspired by the shear genius and artistry of his cinematography as every frame of an Antonioni film tends too look like a rare piece of artwork that should hang in a museum. Like Antonioni, I find that Ang Lee's films are slow moving yet visually a feast for the eyes.

Of course, don't get me started on all the Hitchcock films that I've had the chance to study lately, most notably his earlier works (prior to moving to the US from the UK) such as The 39 Steps (1935) and The Lady Vanishes (1938); and some of his early American films like Shadow of a Doubt (1943); and some of his later work like Torn Curtain (1966) - in this particular film Paul Newman was soooooooo hot!!!!

I could go on and on about films as many of you all know but it's getting cold here in the library and I'm wearing shorts and a light cotton shirt. I think they turn the AC up to keep the people from sitting in here all day.

As always, I welcome your comments. Until next time!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Wendy Williams: How You Doin'?

I know that I've been away from blogging for a little bit, but I had to write today because I wanted to talk about my new favorite talk show that premiered today in limited markets (NY, LA, Dallas, & Detroit) called the Wendy Williams Show! Wendy is a FABULOUS radio talk show hostess on WBLS weekdays. She is also a New York Times best selling author (as I will be one day once I get my books published) But before I go into that I have to put in my two cents before the library closes and I have to dismantle my laptop.

BTW, there are two PHYNE brothas sitting at a table next to me (facing my table) who I'm kinda distracted by as they are studying. I guess they don't think anybody can see them playing footsies with each other under the table! OH-KAAAAAY??!!! Playing "slap and tickle" with their legs all pressed up against each other. And I am sure they are on the DL. I can smell them out ANYWHERE!!! AWRIIIIIIGHT!!!??? (As Ms. Williams would say, "How you doin'?")

Okay, but before I write about Wendy Williams, I wanted to put my two cents in about something I saw today. I was out an appointment today in Downtown Brooklyn and I noticed something that was kinda astonishing and gross at the same time. With the exception of young pre-pubescent girls (who down know any better) and pregnant women: when did mid-riff/baby t's become fashionable wear for older women with beer guts hanging out? Okay, let me say that I know that I may not be the most buffed guy walking around these days, but I do know how to dress to hide my flaws. Okay???!!!! I know it is hot today, but I saw at least half a dozen women (all ranging from age 30 to you-should-know-better) walking around with all that gut hanging out of what looks like their teenager's clothing! Honey, I thought I was going to loose my lunch! Girls, if you are out there and reading this, know this: that is NOT a FLATTERING LOOK!!!! Unless one is forced at gunpoint by one's pimp to wear that in a public setting: RETHINK THE LOOK before venturing out before the public.

Now I know ya'll must be thinking "Well he's a gay guy, what does he care about how a woman looks?" Well I still have eyes, and these woman who are rocking this fashion trend with this particular body flaw, makes me think this is a cry for help! And they OBVIOUSLY don't have any gay male friends, (unless he was mad at her) because if they did, he would have told them about the walking fashion atrocity they would be making by choosing to wear what they thought looked "cute."

Okay, I got distracted again by the aforementioned boys across from me. Okay, scratch what I said before about the "PHYNESS" of the two of them. I just put my glasses on and I really need to get my new prescription because they look more like "Hot Mess 1" and "Hot Mess 2". Nice bodies though, but faces.... But I digress....

So today I watched the new Wendy Williams talk show on FOX-5 here in NY. First let me say, I learned something about Wendy, who I've been listening to on the radio for many years, and that is we are the same exact age! Well she will be this week anyway. And, like me, she looks damn good for her age. She is my "friend in my head." (Look it up - I'm not crazy) I also learned that her first guest, James Denton, (you know "Mike Delfino", the plumber who is married to that clumsy-behind "Susan" - played by the lovely Teri Hatcher - on my favorite guilty pleasure DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES) is also my age as well. Lets just say, it must be the sun because I would have given him older than me! But all in all, I really liked the show, she looked FABULOUS as always!!! And I hope that the show gets picked up after it's limited 6-week run, because it is way more interesting than some of the other talk shows on television now. Oprah better watch out now that she is reruns this summer!

I have to wrap this up so tomorrow I will have to go into detail about my Michelangelo Antonioni and Krzysztof Kieslowski film festivals I had over the weekend. The library is closing in a few minutes and I need to pick up a book before it's too late.


Friday, June 20, 2008

The Front Runner

I just finished reading an amazing book that you MUST read!!! Patricia Nell Warren's The Front Runner. Although this book was published over 20 years ago. I heard that it is now being made into a film. I guess with the success of films "Brokeback Mountain", perhaps the puritianical American public can handle a love story as touching and moving as this book truly is. A masterpiece by any other name.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Sex And The City (Across the Bridge)

It's taken me the entire month of May to recuperate from my surgery but slow-but-surely, I'm getting back up on my feet again. I'm just bored to death. I'm still trying to get my thesis film shot, but I haven't been doing too much since the pain from surgery still gets me now and then. The one thing that I can say is that I've been watching a lot of Netflix stuff. Mostly the continuing stories of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "Angel" (the hunky vampire with a soul). The few times that I've gotten out of bed, I've found myself at the Brooklyn Pubic Library located right near Grand Army Plaza in my beautiful Brooklyn neighborhood of Prospect Heights. I think I'm really lucky to live within walking distance to this great institution that is located beside the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, The Brooklyn Museum and Prospect Park. I feel surrounded in culture whenever I walk out of my apartment and venture near these great landmarks of Brooklyn. The best thing that I've discovered about the library, besides biggest branch in the borough, is that it also loan out DVDs. For a film student as myself (and you never stop being a student even though I've since gotten my A.A.S. in Filmmaking -that's me getting my degree from the President of Gibbs School NY on May 2nd [3 days before my surgery]) having access to a free film library is somewhat of a coup to me.

Besides all the literature that I've been reading lately, I've been watching a lot of films also. Recently I saw the 1967 classic film "Truman Capote's In Cold Blood" starring Robert Blake and Scott Wilson. It was directed by Richard Brooks. I guess you could say I was fascinated by the extraordinary performance of Toby Jones as Truman Capote in the Douglas McGrath indie feature "Infamous." Yes I know that Philip Seymour Hoffman won the Oscar playing the same character in another film of the about the very same subject, and I think Mr. Hoffman is a FANTASTIC actor, but Toby Jones' portrayal is the one that will stick with you long after your return the video to Netflix or your local library. Daniel Craig as the killer Perry Smith was also a phenomenal performance. Although I'm somewhat of a Daniel Craig fan now since having seen him in "The Golden Compass", "Road to Perdition", "Casino Royal", "Layer Cake" and of course "Infamous".

While I'm on the subject of films, I have to give a shout out to to the ladies and gents of the new film "Sex and The City." Of course, I was on line on opening night to watch the film in an East Village theater. First of all I have to say that it really is somewhat of a phenomenon because about 85% of the audience in this NYC crowd that I went to see it with were mostly very fashionable women in the latest designer fashion and accessories. Hermes and Prada bags, the "infamous" Carrie Bradshaw silk flower on the lapel, and Manolo Blahnik's EVERYWHERE!!! Paul and I may have been two of the few men in the audience besides the various guys who were clearly dragged there by their female companions (Steve's, Mr. Big's, Harry's and Smith's). But there were gay men there as well (what would Sex and the City be without any of us?) It seems that the show is somewhat like the "Rocky Horror Picture Show" in that the audience seemed to replicate the characters on from the film (I guess Paul and I were "Stanford" and "Anthony" that night).

While we waited for the film to come on everyone was talking about their favorite episode. (My favorite of all time is "The Real Me" episode where Stanford declares Carrie to be "Fashion roadkill" when she falls on the runway at a fashion show and Heidi Klum walks over her.) Had alcohol been allowed to been served, I'm sure someone would have ordered a round of "Cosmos" for all.

As far as the film goes, whether you are a fan of the show or not, it definitely has it's moments that people will be talking about all summer long. Michael Patrick King has outdone himself bringing this fairytale to the big screen. It really is a homage to everything that is New York City. I was especially surprised to see the scene that I watch being filmed in front of my school on 40th St, Katharine Gibbs School. Not to give away too much of a plot, it involved 2 limos, the girls, Mr. Big, and a whole mess of discarded white roses! If you look close in the back ground, you can see the Gibbs awning next to the Bryant Park Hotel. I only wish I didn't have to sell my complete series of the show (money was tight) because I always like laughing at the things that makes living in this city so great. Oh, I also like the "Easy Come, Easy Go" episode where Bobby Cannavale played Samantha's sex partner, Adam Ball with the "funky spunk." Gee, I miss Sex and the City!

And I mean that both figuratively and LITERALLY!!

Friday, May 16, 2008

I Didn't Walk Toward the Light

Just a quickie to let everyone know that I've survived my surgery. I did go into it with the idea that it was minor, but in reality, all surgery is MAJOR. And mine was no different. But the good thing is that I survived. I've been home recuperating but relaxing and reading a lot of books. Think Goodness for the NY Public Library Card!!!!

The graduation when very well since the last time I wrote. I'm no longer "working" for Out at the Center for the time being. Relaxing and healing has been my main priority for the moment. Luckily I have good friends to check in on me and make sure that I'm okay. Thanks Paul!!!! I've been taking vicodine and it has the strangest way of giving me really weird dreams. I'm talking really, crazy stuff too! A word of caution: NEVER EVER take vicodine and watch "I Am Legend" (the Will Smith film, or for that matter the original version: "The Omega Man" with Charlton Heston) on the same night: It will FREAK YOU OUT!!!!!!!

I read last week a book by T. J. Parsell called "Fish" that was very interesting. It make me think, "hmm, I wonder who has the film rights for this book?" I finished Michael Cunningham's Specimen Days. Wasn't crazy about it, but it was a quick read. I'm reading now 3 books: Paul T. Rogers book "Saul's Book", Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, and Armistead Maupin's The Night Listener. Needless to say I'm taking it easy while the swelling subsides.

Oh, I watched Looking for Langston. A film by one of my favorite director's Issac Julian. This was one of his first films and it made me think a lot about another film called "Brother to Brother" by another one of my favorite filmmakers' Rodney Evans. They both dealt with the Harlem Renaissance and the Black Gay struggle. I wonder if Evans' was inspired by Julian's film? Either way, it was powerful filmmaking. Both films. So if you have an opportunity, put it on your Netflix queue or go to you local public library. I got Looking for Langston and the Brooklyn Public Library. Go figure?

On a more serious note, my thoughts and prayers are with the people of China and Myanmar and all their family members who reside stateside. God Bless.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

DL, Albee, and the Knife

It's been a roller coaster this month and especially difficult when it comes to having access to the Internet.

What did I do this month:

Oh yeah, I saw "The DL Chronicles" on DVD: really good storytelling and acting and it was a lot better than any of the other shows that come on the HERE! Network. I also when to a screening of this new film called "Hamlet 2": It was HILARIOUS! It opens in August. Put it on your must see list! It was an intelligent comedy.

Read a couple of good books: Twice As Good: Condoleezza Rice and Her Path to Power by Marcus Mabry and Michael Tolliver Lives by Armistead Maupin.

At the center I shot a conversation with one of the greatest living American playwrights: Edward Albee. It was for a future segment. Also shot a conversation with author Michael Cunningham. I happen to be reading his last novel, Specimen Days (think "The Hours" except instead of Virginia Woolf it's Walt Whitman). It was an okay shoot, but I'm glad my friend Julie Ann was there to make sure that it started on time, otherwise, I'd still be there.

Oh, I'm graduating from school on May 2. Did I mention I'm graduating WITH HONORS? I'm very excited but now I just want to finish and get my BFA. Check out my Amazon wish list for gifts suggestions. BTW, got an extension on my thesis film. Talk about drama! Thank you Dean LeMelle!!!! OXOXOX

I go "under the knife" on May 5. Many of you know, but for those of you who don't know what it's all about, I will just say that I will be okay and it's a necessary surgery, but not life threatening. After which I will have time to recover because I think I may have just been fired from my gig at The Center. But I'm still trying to wrap my head around that as I sit here and type. I'm at school now writing this entry and wondering what my next move will be. Oh wait, I see my friend Michael Armstrong (he must be here to pick up his cap and gown too).

Okay, gotta run until next time.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Film School at 44

I've done it!! With hard work and determination I can honestly say that as of today, March 28, 2008 I am a COLLEGE GRADUATE. As of today I have my Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S) Degree in Digital Filmmaking and Multimedia! I am very happy and proud that I have been able to achieve this accomplishment at the tender age of 44 given all the drama that I've lived through in the past couple of years. I will get my degree in a ceremony on May 2. Even though I dropped out of my Bachelor program at Pace University over 25 years ago to pursue my calling to be a thespian on the stage, I guess there was something in me that was determine to prove that it's never too late to finish college. The next step will be to get my Bachelor and then my Master's degree. But for the time being I'm going to pursue the workforce in a freelance capacity until I decide on what school I'd like to further my education at.

I should mention that I passed my only class, Literature and Composition by the skin of my teeth. I got a A minus. I thought that I would probably get a C or a B+ because I was late handing in my term paper (a comparison of short stories that I titled "Cowboys and Indians:
The Dynamics of Male Bonding in Modern Western Literature") I compared the literature of Annie Proulx's "Brokeback Mountian" with Sherman Alexie's "This is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona" from his collection of short stories The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven. I say I passed by the skin of my teeth because I had so much trouble writing this paper. The first time I did it I forgot to save it on my thumb drive the day that it was due. When I went back to copy on my drive to take to from home to school, my stupid Dell laptop crashed and I lost the file entirely. So when I finally went into class on the last day ready to take what I had coming to me, my professor refused to take no for an answer and made me write "something" during the class. Well 2 hours later, I came up with almost an identical paper that I had written before (with a full bibliography included) of what I could remember. I guess in the end, when push comes to shove and my butt is on the line, I can write like it's nobody's business! In the end I got an "A" on this final paper of this chapter of my academic career.

I had a weird dream the other night where I had the opportunity to meet one of my Film idols, John Waters. It wasn't as crazy as one of his films (or mine for that matter) but it was nice. Someone had passed him a copy of my thesis film (which is still in the works once I get through with my minor medical issues) Poppin' In and one night I get this phone call from someone claiming to be John Waters. So at first I'm thinking it's a friend playing a joke on me until I ask him some questions that only he could answer (you can learn a lot from listening to the Director's commentary tracks on DVDs) and sure enough, it really was John Waters! I was flabbergasted and he invites me to lunch to discuss my short thesis film (That he thought was "a riot") and then I woke up. But it was a nice dream. I guess since I have been meeting famous directors (Mira Nair, Cynthia Wade) maybe this dream was telling me something. Hmmm....

Anyway this week at the Center we put up the March 2008 episode of "Out at the Center" and I have to say that I'm very proud of it especially since I had the opportunity to shot footage for several segments on this program. I even helped with the editing on the closing credits (a fashion show) and I hope that I've made all of my film professors at KGS (Katharine Gibbs School) proud of my film shooting and editing skills. Most importantly I hope I made my boss proud on the show. This week I also worked on filming an upcoming segment with author Michael Luongo who recently released Gay Travels in the Muslim World. I haven't had an opportunity to read the book yet, but from the discussion he gave, it fascinates me. Especially since once my brother-in-law told me that there were no gay people in Pakistan. I made sure he saw "My Beautiful Launderette" after he told me this bit of information. Okay, the guy lived in London, but he was born in Pakistan in the film. Plus it was the very first time I saw Oscar winner Daniel Day-Lewis and was smitten!

Anyhoo, until next time my darlings....

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Saga Continues

Life has been crazy. In addition to turning another year older (I'm 44 yrs young), I've been filming a lot at The Center. It's been interesting with very eclectic subject matters ranging from a leather fetish fashion show, to an art exhibition for nudist. If you hit the link above you can see some of my latest work. I especially proud of the NY City Comptroller William C. Thompson (no relation) segment that I both taped and edited for the program. I even had the opportunity to tape an interview with a new Oscar winner, Cynthia Wade. She came to the Center to talk about winning an Oscar a few weeks ago for best documentary short subject called "Freeheld: The Laurel Hester Story" If you haven't had a chance to see this documentary it will be shown in the summer on cable.

In addition to all that the thesis film has been sort of postponed until I can take care of some recent medical things that have to get taken care of. However, I haven't given up on filming the piece because I desperately want to get it into film festivals before the summer.

P.S. I think as I am about to graduate I will turn my blog focus on my film and video projects POST FILM SCHOOL from now on. It's been really interesting so far and I would imagine as I continue to gain more professional experience it will only get more interesting as the year moves on.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Filmmaker Returns

I know it's been a while, but I've been really, really, really crazed. Check out my latest work at Out at the Center. I'm actually rather proud of it. Especially the William C. Thompson segment. No, we are not related. School has been interesting with the only class I'm taking now is Literature and Composition and I really like it. My professor is really cool too! She makes the literature that we've been reading interesting. I seem to be doing well so far. I did make the Dean's List once again for last quarter. However it's still the matter of my thesis film to finish. This has been the bane of my existence since last quarter. Problems, problems, problems all around. It would have been great if I was adopted by the Spielbergs or Brangelina-- then maybe the short would have been finished by now. It always come down to $$$$.

Oh, BTW, my school announced that it will be closing by Dec 2009. Good thing I'm almost done!

I cried when I heard of Heath Ledger's passing. A light put out much too soon.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Happy New Year!

I can't believe I'm just getting around to making my first entry of the year.

First of all I want to let you all know that just because the Hollywood writers are on strike doesn't mean that I am either. I've just been incredibly busy with the final stages of pre-production before the cameras start to role on my film, Poppin' In.

Second, as today is his birthday and I haven't phoned yet, I just want to wish an old friend Happy Birthday. So here goes:


Joe, I know we haven't spoken in a while but I hope you know that I still love you (and everyone in your household) very much.

Third, If you haven't seen it yet check out Out at the Center's December 2007 episode. It's very hot! Brazilian men ALL OVER!!!

Sly Stallone has gone and done another Rambo film after 20 years. Did we really need another one? And why does Rambo still have a mullet? Whatever...

Okay, that's about all for now. I'm only taking one class this quarter, (the one I had to withdraw from last quarter) and it just let out a few minutes ago. But after I complete this class, I will be a college graduate FINALLY!!!!!!