Tag Archives: Craig Allen

Button, button; a word on festival promotion

The Canadian premiere of The Devil’s Tail at the Moving Image Film Festival was a success. With only 2 weeks to prepare, we did as much as we could to promote. Of course, it’s the festival presenting the film, not us, and they do their own promotion, but we want the film to find its audience, so…Part I of that great interview came out just days before the screening, so that was great timing and thanks to the Toronto Film Scene for that.

Craig Allen, who never complains, flew into immediate action, adding laurel leaves to all our artwork and coming up with that flyer in web and print form so it could be emailed and posted on this site. We printed a small number of those flyers on our own laser printer and distributed them at the Mexican businesses we frequent, as we noticed many local cultural events leave printed material at these particular places, and it’s a great way to reach people who are not online. We also left them at Insomnia, which was hosting the opening night festival party.

We contacted the Mexican Consulate in Toronto who were very pleased to promote the screening, so notice got emailed to thousands of people on that mailing list; a staggering level of support for a cultural event, so thanks to Raul Suarez and all at the Mexican Consulate.

Thanks to Paco Luviano and Hannah Burgé for notice in their Music Village newsletter and getting DJ Larry Green to plug the screening on the radio on Jazz FM.

Craig Allen also facilitated the artwork of our logo on those cool buttons, which we were able to get for opening night… we treated the festival as if we were out-of-towners and went to the opening night screenings and party and gave those buttons to the audiences and party goers. They are already attending the festival; it’s called preaching to the converted and it works.

This was all to great effect, as we had a full house and got a great response…

Up un-God-ly early Sunday to shoot out in the countryside with Craig Allen, then back to screenings at the festival for closing night. We were exhausted and swore we were only going to attend one program of shorts and skip the party as we had another early day in production-for-hire yesterday.

Good thing we didn’t. We met filmmakers David Rodriguez and Chris Smith who had done beautifully visual work in the different programs of shorts… not only did we like these guys, we exchanged info as one offered future visual effects and the other offered equipment in Mexico on future shoots there.

The benefits from meeting fellow filmmakers at festivals are great, not the least of which is a sense of community…

On to the next festival. DT has been invited to the 8th Annual Boston Latino International Film Festival in late November…

Punky little button...

Punky little button...

Oh how I love these 1.25 inch buttons…

Discussing details with the designer

Needed to further details with Craig on our fictitious posters in the scene with Ramirez, our tacky Cancun producer character, who will be played by Mérida actor Juan de Dios Barrueta Rath.
Unlike the gorgeous pulp fiction book jacket Craig designed for another scene, these posters are meant to be contemporary, like GIRLS GONE WILD and reality productions of that type. By contemporary, of course I mean relatively current and could look like they are from within the last 10 years.

Our fictional series of movies are cheap flicks that are knocked out quickly to exploit young women on the beach in Cancun. This is based on actual series that shoot college girls on spring break getting loaded at the encouragement of the producers on the beach and in clubs and they’re encouraged to strip, make out with each other, flash tits at the camera, etc.

THAT’s what we’re basing our fictional movies on. So I was thinking he could use copyright free shots of women on the beach, or disembodied TnA and make them even more tacky in context — by giving one or two an airbrushed illustrator look of the type that was so present in the 80s, for example – a font like SantaFe LET if you know what I mean.

Our fake titles are SPRING BREAK MADNESS, SPRING BREAK MADNESS II, SPRING BREAK MADNESS IV : Cancun Nights… 3 pieces of art work could work…

Now that I’m online, I’ll look for some more reference.

Communicating with the designer

Today I had to get in touch with the designer we’re working with in Toronto; Craig Allen of The Richmond Studio. His work is sharp and elegant and we’re lucky to have him. He’s designed all of the logos and artwork for Ardent and for our Cygnet Theatre Company.

We need a few — 3 sounds good — pieces to be fictitious tacky posters or mock-ups of posters. These are meant to be of cheap, knocked-off, exploit ‘reality’ movies of the GIRLS GONE WILD variety.

I found some reference material I thought might be good that I emailed to him.
It’s amazing what’s yielded by going to a stock material website like Stock Exchange for example and doing a search on the word “bikini”.

In terms of size, I can’t imagine printing them out any smaller than 8.5×14 paper in order to read as ‘posters’ or ‘mock-ups’ in the scene set in our tacky producer’s office. Our fake titles are things like: Spring Break Madness followed by, II, III and IV: Cancun Nights.

Also, I need to ask Craig if we should we have a photoshop file of the fake pulp book jacket as a prop for one of our cocina scenes between the Pete and Cross characters, or should we just print the pdf? Hmm…

Fake Pulp Cover

Postscript: Special treat: there was a line of paperbacks published by a company called Signet. Ours is published by Cygnet… the name of our old theatre company. And our phony book cover looked even better once wrapped around a book, had a drink spilled on it and dried a bit bit bleached and dog-eared. Kicking the crap out of props? Can do!