Monday, May 17, 2010

News: One Life Remaining season two and CanWest 2010 details


The premiere of the second One Life Remaining season was supposed to air on Saturday, but it did not.  As I've stated, programming is another department, this kind of thing is out of my hands, but I've told them what's up and it should be straightened out soon.  So in the meantime, I'll go over what you can expect from the season.

The first episode acts as a prologue to the season, taking place four years before the events of season one.  The second episode then begins a short time after season one's finale, the real beginning in a sense, and from there each episode takes place right after the last (except for the fourth episode which will be a flashback episode entirely dedicated to Kathryn's history).

The first season was very experimental and very much just a platform for a joke or two, there were a lot of filler episodes (until the last three).  Not so in the new season, in which every episode is very story driven, each scene serving the purpose of pushing the story forward.  No filler.  I've also really tried to punch up the writing this time around, and structurally, I'm trying to make the story solid enough that if all the episodes in the season were played at once, it would be like watching a feature film, with appropriately placed major plot points.  It's a lot of work -- I'm really throwing myself into this now.  Nearly all of my free time, never mind my actual work time, is being put into this (and my secret project).  During the time I'm not working, I'll either be playing Demon's Souls on PS3 for a couple hours, or I'm self-educating myself on story structure and professional screenplay writing, buying/reading a lot of books.

For any other aspiring screenplay writers, I highly recommend reading the books on the subject by Syd Field, including "Screenplay", "The Screenwriter's Workbook" and "The Screenwriter's Problem Solver".  Those are a great place to start.

As I've been working on the new season, I've fallen into a number of depression pits in which I think to myself over and over, "Who the hell's gonna enjoy this and take it seriously?  Halo characters?  Give me a break, Halo machinima is so lame, nerdy, overused and boring to watch now.  Who am I kidding, I can't write worth shit".  But it's all part of the writing process.  It sucks, and if you want to pursue writing as a career, you gotta be prepared to deal with the symptoms.

I hope people that watch will try and ignore the fact that it's done in Halo and focus on the dialogue and the music and everything else I try and exceed at to make watching lifeless Master Chief models moving around and bobbing heads tolerable.  Trust me, I think it's just as lame as everyone else, but fuck it.  Machinima's a great way to get film out there on a $0 budget, and working with the Theatre mode camera can really build your skill at capturing action within the frame in a compelling way which can easily carry over to live action when your career eventually calls for it.  That's my plan.

Anyway, onto CanWest 2010.  If you're unfamiliar with it and you happen to live in or near Vancouver, the website is here:

I will be attending and showing the first two episodes back-to-back of my secret project (I'd just go ahead and tell everybody but I think might want to do some kind of promotion for it, in which case I don't think I'm at liberty to give details right now).  The screening is on May 30th, and I'll be there to show the two episodes and then answer some questions afterwards from the audience.  After that, I believe everyone has the opportunity to meet for drinks, which I will also be attending.  The details are all on the website.

What I WILL say about what I'm showing at the event right now is this: chances are it's exactly what you think it might be.

Thanks for keeping up with my blog!

- Jon

P.S. Yes, my photo on the website is very, very gay.