Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Provocateur on Amazon

The Provocateur is now live on Amazon streaming video and DVD as part of the A Series of ONE collection.

I wrote The Provocateur--a one-man show with Pry'ce Jaymes--about an enigmatic character who has appeared to ask challenging and existential questions that may be benevolent but seem to have an undertone of menace. 

Sunday, May 22, 2016

The Provocateur

The Provocateur is an enigmatic character who has appeared to ask challenging and existential questions that may be benevolent but seem to have an undertone of menace--coming soon to Amazon streaming video and DVD with Pry'ce Jaymes.

This is the latest installment of A Series of ONE, a collection of one-man/one-woman shows I have written and directed about individuals at a turning point in their lives.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Confessions: Long-form storytelling in an unlikely venue

In 1997, I created a series that was one of the first to go on the Internet. Streaming video had yet to arrive on the scene so we had to be innovative about what we offered and how it was delivered to viewers. The website, supervised by Dave Manship, presented snippets of characters' dialogue via WAV files, for example.

Tales of the characters' misadventures were described in the fictional newspaper The Briarwood Breeze. To see the episodes, one had to purchase a subscription and subscribers would receive VHS cassettes through the mail--an early-day version of Netflix, you might say.

We also featured pages that described the relationship of one character to another so as to define key connections.

Unlike episodic television of the time, I created the story arc of the season to revolve around a single event--the murder of an undercover policeman named Jimmy Beacon and every character in Briarwood was a potential suspect. This sort of long-form storytelling is common in premium cable offerings today like House of Cards, True Detective, The Wire, The Killing and others but was exceptional when we made Confessions.

We also had a gift shop that, in addition to subscriptions, offered posters, T-shirts, coffee cups and other items featuring the poster and/or logo from Confessions.

I created the show and wrote and directed many of the segments but others in the repertory company also wrote and directed as many segments as I did, principally Kathi Carey and Stephanie Burnham. Articles about Confessions appeared in newspapers across the country and our launch party was attended by media including a news crew from China.

It was a very interesting time.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Devotee coming soon to Amazon

What would you do to make friends with a celebrity? The Devotee with Belén Oyola-Rebaza coming soon to Amazon streaming video and DVD...

Monday, May 9, 2016

What I learned from talking with Steve McQueen

I always thought of my encounters with acting icon Steve McQueen as 'Ferrari' anecdotes but looking back on them from the perspective of a filmmaker who instructs technique and branding to actors, it's impossible to remember them and not come away with interesting observations about the screen legend and insight as to how it was he maintained his star status at the box office for most of his career.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Preparing The Thinker

The third show, The Thinker, for A Series of ONE is being prepared for launch on Amazon which means working with Louella Ladybug on posters, thumbnails and DVD wrap and disc art.

As I work on this, I am struck by how different they all are one for the others and what an amazing collection of characters they represent.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Joy White gets her first review for The Stranger

5.0 out of 5 stars Joy White delivers a powerful performance in the Stranger
By Thomas Maseth on April 22, 2016
Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
Joy White delivers a powerful performance in the Stranger. The wide range of emotions she displays gives her the ability to relate to her audience. You believe Joy is the character she is portraying. I look forward to Joy's next project!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Jerry Fairfax: Jerry Ascends to the Heavens

All I can say is this show was a blast to make and was filled with more inside showbiz jokes than even we realized--a golden age for our group, if we did but know it...

In all, we taped 190 half-hour episodes of 'Jerry'.

Jerry Ascends to the Heavens on DVD (Amazon)

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Tom Meade and the Thomassima on 60 Minutes

I knew Tom Meade for a period of forty years spending time with him in southern California in the 70s, buying cars from him in Italy and, later, getting him out of the West Los Angeles VA Medical Center for dinners in restaurants a couple of times a week after he suffered a stroke. When I decided to combine these outings with casting sessions I was conducting for my (Interview) version française series, Elysée Wednesday was born and the weekly, Wednesday gatherings continued from 2009 until 2014.

During those first gatherings, Tom spoke of a segment 60 Minutes had done on him and his Thomassima III that was but a memory as he was never given a copy of the footage. I determined, there and then, that Tom should have access to the footage and went on a quest to obtain it for him. The video seen above is the result.

To: DiPierro, Daniel Subject: CBS 60 Minutes archive footage...

I was directed to you after inquiring about archival footage shot for 60 Minutes in 1970 on Tom Meade of Modena, Italy. Tom was the designer/builder of a Ferrari-based supercar known as the Thomassima (see attached photo) and he was the subject of a 60 Minutes segment. Tom would like to know if the footage is available to him.
Here is what Tom gave me:
CBS film library 31935 year 1970 660 Tom Meade Bob Orozovich reporter Winston Burdett locaton Modena, Italy 2 reels 16mm, comp mag color source CBSS/Biasetti
I hope this data helps in locating the footage if it still exists in your archive. Please feel free to contact me for further clarification.
Best regards, Stephen

Mr. Mitchell,

We have film here entitled “Tom Meade of Modena” (7/10/70). It’s about ten minutes long. I’ve attached a copy of the archival broadcast printout for you to see. How does Mr. Meade plan on using this material?,

Ann M. Fotiades
Unit Manager CBS News Information Resources
524 West 57th Street (510/2106) New York, NY 10019

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Pry'ce Jaymes: The Provocateur

Yesterday, we taped A Series of ONE: The Provocateur which is a one-man show I wrote for Pry'ce Jaymes and makes full use of his enigmatic and powerful nature. It is quite a feat for an actor to hold an audience for the duration of a one-act play without help from other actors or special effects of any kind. The photo above is a screen capture from the production.