The Indiegogo fundraiser for Demonspawn fell well short of our most best case scenario for filming. However, we did do well enough to shoot what we planned to shoot and do it well. How can this be? Bowfinger. That film was a watershed for us as filmmakers. After arriving in Los Angeles, we had been in an endless litany of meetings and negotiations for various projects that got us no where. For four years, Jon and I and later joined by Ralph and Marguerite Lliteras had gone into a meeting with high hopes and big promises only to be ground down with endless new demands and delays. We've had more than one company raise money for their own projects based on the strength of our pitches. We were beyond frustrated. Then, Jon and I saw Bowfinger. We had Ralph and Marguerite see it. At that same time, we saw an ultra low budget short Joss Whedon shot for Buffy, The VampireSlayer series . That gave us the crazy notion to shoot our own proof of concept. They are now called 'sizzle reels.' The Bowfinger philosophy was that all movies only really cost $2,184 dollars. Fortunately, we raised more than that. When we decided to make The Privateers, Jon and I had absolutely no money beyond our paychecks. It got done. With actual bucks in hand, watch out.
There is a lot of elements on our side. Equipment is much cheaper and actually better. We own a lot of our own rig. We have resources from the city, county and state that are fee-free and we have some really cool and varied locations that are willing to give us a day here or there. The only thing that the money changes is shooting in one straight shot (5 to 7 days). We'll have to do this over a couple of months now. And I will most certainly be doing all the craft services, but the cast actually wants that (especially the baked goods). And then, we have a committed and enthusiastic cast. The work we did in the run up to the teaser shoot and the discussion we had during the podcast shoot produced some amazing insights from our leads. These insights prompted us to re-write the script that emphasizes the interplay between Simon and Joe and Ethan in the present and Bassett in the flashbacks over a lot of action. We've been challenged to find our inner Ron Moore and Jane Espenson and use our FX sparingly. That is a big groovy exercise for a writer and an actor.
So, Jon and I are re-working the treatment. We'll be meeting with the cast and key crew between now and next week to coordinate resources and schedules. I have to find out what we need for permits, insurance and SAG clearance. Then, we will set a shooting schedule. It's going to be a buttload of work. Could it have been easier? Hells yes! We would have loved to have all the bells and whistles and luxuries. I don't think it will be as rough as our first shoot purely because it isn't our first shoot. We know how to do a lot now, including foresee difficulties and fix them on the fly.
Look for a progress report next week. Thanks very much for all of your support. Me, Jon, Garett, Owen, Donal and Jack and our crew really appreciate it! We hope you enjoy the ride.