Sonic Cinema

Sounds, Visions and Insights by Brian Skutle

Anytime one gets a chance to reference Spinal Tap, one must take it. The song in this blog’s subtitle is one of the group’s funniest.

So, over the past week I’ve been taking some vacation time from work. (‘Cause you know, starting movies is oh so exhausting…) Among my accomplishments was getting a clearer idea on the release possibilities for “Baron Wasteland.” Sadly, life has intervened, and the interview segments are currently on hold until probably the summer. But that’s just provided some rather interesting possibilities, and a chance to think a bit “outside the box” on what I can do to promote this series.

Currently, the plan is such. With all its’ shots done, I will be spending the next week or so editing the materials for “Chapter 2” (subtitled, “Lemur See, Lemur Due”) in time so I can submit that- along with “Movement I” of “Unwinnable Hand”- to the Dragon*Con Film Festival. After that, filming will (hopefully) commence of the rest of the series, including getting the interview segments with my mother completed, allowing me to get “Chapter 1” finished in time for a hopeful August debut online (hopefully preceeding a D*C debut of “Chapter 2″…cross your fingers), and allowing me to get the remainder of the chapters done and released on a cycle that will go through the rest of the year.

“Chapter 2” is, in more ways than one, perhaps the most personal of the series. You can read the history of my unusual nickname in my short story “Requiem for a Lemur: A Short Story of the Grand Lemur” over at MySpace, or you can just wait for “Chapter 2,” which adds another wrinkle in the mythology by its’ film-within-a-film, a documentary on lemurs the Baron wrote and directed to get the word out on these fascinating creatures. That film is entitled “Requiem for a Ringtail: From One Lemur to Another”, and was filmed over the weekend, with editing and narration and music recorded over the past couple of days (the score of which is now available online for listening).

“But Brian,” you ask, “how did you film lemurs on your limited means and resources? Aren’t they halfway around the world?” Why yes, they are. To answer your questions, I’ll let the script do the talking…

The more I read about these regal creatures, however, the more
intriguing- and fitting- the nickname became. I wanted to learn
more, to be one with these adorable animals. I wanted to be in
touch with my inner lemur. I decided to make a documentary.


“Endangered Project”

Now, ideally, I would have like to go to the lemur’s homeland
of Madagascar to film footage of these curious animals, as well
as to study them. (Cut to Brian tracing trek to Madagascar on
globe or map.) Unfortunately, I had neither the resources nor
the inclination to subject myself to that type of environment for
such an expedition.

Thankfully, in the mid-80s an animal preserve on St. Catherine’s
island in the Georgia Barrier Islands had brought some lemurs a
little closer to home. Sadly, when I approached them, saying that I
wanted to learn about my ancestors the lemur for a documentary
I was doing, well, let’s just say they weren’t shy about their disdain
for my attitude and exploitation of the lemurs.

Crushed, but still determined, I decided to take matters into my
own hands…


“The Lemur Way”

EXT. Yard

We see Brian and a few friends in the front yard of his house. They are moving plastic lemurs around as a cameraman shoots them.

If the real world wouldn’t give me access to the animals I
came to love, well, (Cut to Brian inside, in chair.) I would
find my own way to pay tribute to the delightful creature.
So I rounded up all the toy lemurs I could find- and all
the adults I could find willing to get their hands dirty for
the cause- and went to work. (Cut to Brian and co. prepping
the lemurs, and getting ready.) There were moments where I
really felt like I was watching real lemurs interact.

Linger on cut footage of the “lemurs” from what they shot before cutting to Brian, at his computer, with a microphone in his hand, as he records narration over footage.”

Thanks for reading,

Brian Skutle

Click here to read my second “Baron Wasteland” Production Diary.
Click here to read my first “Baron Wasteland” Production Diary.

Click here to read my latest entry in my “Unwinnable Hand” Production Diary.

Click here to read “Red Cup Mafia,” another short script I wrote in November 2006- inspired by some recent happenings at work- that I hope to film in the future through Cinema Nouveau Productions.

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