22 November 2008

The Two Sisters

Some friends and people who meet me are surprised I wrote THE TWO SISTERS because they think it is dark. Just today I told someone that my book, GROWING PAINS – 10 short stories about growing up, is totally different from THE TWO SISTERS, so I guess I am just versatile. Storytelling of any kind has always fascinated me; I was the kid in school who loved when the teacher read to the class. I guess that is why I read to my students now.

During the writing process for THE TWO SISTERS, I learned a lot about bipolar disorder, including how it affects people who have it and the people around them from the film's consultant, psychologist Charlotte Houston, Ph.D. Not all bipolar people are violent, but being the reasonable person that I am it made sense to provide a reason for having the two sisters be angry and subconsciously seeking vengeance for how their mother died. Celeste Yarnall, who plays “Nurse Louise,” suggested that I include an illness and she was correct. It made the story more realistic and I received two award nominations for the script. Celeste (http://www.celesteyarnall.com/) used to manage screenwriters, so I kind of thought it would be a good idea to follow her advice.

Thank you for the feedback. I love creativity and embrace the gift I was given. I plan to write many more stories that will intrigue.

21 November 2008

Friday the 13th: The Series

This week it was announced that CBS DVD and Paramount Home Entertainment will release Friday the 13th: The Series – The Second Season on February 10, 2009 (the First Season was released on September 23rd). The series originally aired in first-run syndication in the U.S. for three seasons from September 1987 through May 1990.

For some of you this may not be important news, but I absolutely love Friday the 13th: The Series. I think the program is misunderstood by people who may not have ever watched it because of the title. I am sure many folks assume it is the same as the FRIDAY THE 13th films, when in fact, the two are very different.

Friday the 13th: The Series is about two cousins, Micki and Ryan, who inherit an antique store full of cursed objects from their Uncle Lewis, whom they have never even met. At first they are not aware that the antiques are cursed and sell many of them. Then they meet Jack, who originally collected many of the antiques for Uncle Lewis before they were cursed, and he informs them about a pact Uncle Lewis made in exchange for wealth. In each episode Micki, Ryan, and Jack hunt for the cursed antiques that Micki and Ryan sold. Initially, Micki just wants to hurry and find everything so that she can go on with her life, but over time something special happens: Micki, Ryan, and Jack become very close friends.

While watching the series, it is enjoyable seeing the relationship develop between Micki, Ryan, and Jack. The stories are well written and the actors are wonderful: Louise Robey as “Micki,” John D. LeMay as “Ryan,” and Chris Wiggins as “Jack.” I even think the music is great, and they always had excellent performances from actors making guest appearances on the show.

Since this series often featured stories regarding the occult, it turned off some people who felt that it was too dark. However, I am walking in the light and liked watching this show because the ultimate goal was for good to overthrow evil. Micki, Ryan, and Jack had love for mankind and felt responsible enough to put their lives on the line to help others by collecting the cursed objects and placing them in a sealed vault.

If you like suspense, mystery, and horror you will probably enjoy watching Friday the 13th: The Series. Maybe you will decide to purchase the DVDs of the series or watch it on the cable channel Chiller. Let me know if you are aware of other ways to watch the show (e.g. if you live outside the U.S.).

10 November 2008

What Just Happened

Yesterday I saw the movie, WHAT JUST HAPPENED, starring Robert De Niro, and liked it. It showed a few days in the life of a Hollywood producer (De Niro). Robert De Niro’s performance was superb, and probably the reason why I enjoyed this movie, which is based on a book, about the film industry.

De Niro’s character produced a movie starring Sean Penn, and the studio disliked the ending. Immediately following a test screening of the film, he was told by a studio executive that he had to change the ending or the studio would take the movie out of the Cannes Film Festival. As a result, the producer had the arduous task of imploring the writer/director to change the film’s ending. Meanwhile, he was dealing with the emotions of a teenage daughter from his first marriage, struggling with the notion of getting back together with his second ex-wife (Robin Wright Penn), and getting celebrity Bruce Willis to shave his “Grizzly Adams beard” and lose weight so that he looks like a movie star, for the next film he is producing.

WHAT JUST HAPPENED may intrigue some even more about heading to Hollywood to start a career in the film industry, but on the other hand, it will probably just confirm to others why they are not working in Hollywood. Independent filmmaking has become extremely popular because an independent filmmaker does not deal with studio notes or test screenings, is not told to change the ending of his or her masterpiece, and may not be dealing with movie star egos because the budgets cannot afford them. However, it is mentioned in the movie that De Niros’ character’s movie is an official selection at Cannes Film Festival, even though the judges only watched 10 minutes, because it has big stars in it.

It is important to note that WHAT JUST HAPPENED, directed by Barry Levinson, is an independent movie I watched at an independently-owned movie theatre. WHAT JUST HAPPENED had a very high budget ($25 million), and that places it on the upper-end of the independent filmmaking world. The majority of independent filmmakers do not have budgets over two million dollars. But, at any rate, please support independent movies.

06 November 2008

Book Lovers Book Signing

The November 1st book signing for my novel, GROWING PAINS – 10 short stories about growing up, was extraordinary! Family, friends, and fans attended the book signing at Book Lovers Bookstore in Sacramento on a rainy day. I really appreciated the support everyone provided. Thank you all for visiting with me at the event and buying my book.

05 November 2008

03 November 2008

Ron Millkie Dedication

My friend, Ron Millkie (http://www.officerdorf.com/), has suggested I start a Blog. As a result, I dedicate this first entry to him. Many of you know Ron is an actor ("Officer Dorf" in FRIDAY THE 13th) and acting instructor.

Ron made an appearance in my first feature film, THE TWO SISTERS. I thought his performance was great, and working with him was a wonderful experience. Ron was extremely professional, and also very humorous. On our day off we even hung out together.

Ron: Thank you for the idea to create this Blog. I will do my best to make it interesting. I hope you and others enjoy reading. Everyone: Please feel free to send comments and/or ask questions.

I hope you are able to check out our movie: THE TWO SISTERS. The DVD is available at IndieFlix (http://www.indieflix.com/FilmDetail.aspx?tid=14652&name=TheTwoSisters) and you can stream it on your computer at Eye Soda (http://www.eyesoda.com/film/8). We definitely need your support, as my production company, TDA Entertainment, is independent. We want to make more great films for you, so please support independent film.


My new novel, THE TWO SISTERS, is available for purchase:  The Two Sisters by Terri Dawn Arnold . The story has crime, drama, and mystery. L...