Sound bites

I finally felt confident that I had researched enough about sound mixing in Final Cut to start manually chopping away at the sound in the rough cut. Now, I’ve got the pilot episode polished and edited in time for Friday’s premiere. I’m really proud of it and ridiculously excited to share it. I’m a little bummed that our fake campaign ads didn’t generate the excitement or build the fan base we’d hoped, but whatever, they were fun. Soon the show can speak for itself and hopefully its popularity will grow from there.

I need to have all the episodes completed before next week because I just won’t have time to do it after that point. It’s getting down to crunch time with the moving process. Not to mention this Mac Book Pro ain’t mine anymore after Oct. 15. I am going to miss it so much. I bought an external hard drive to house all my video files until I can get my own Mac (someday, provided I find employment). I like being able to carry my editing suite with me wherever I go, but I hope to eventually have a pretty powerful desktop Apple to edit my projects on in the future. But first things first! Let’s focus on fun recipes you can make with ramen noodles, rice and beans. Because that’s all I’ll be eating for the foreseeable future.

On that note, if anyone has a used laptop they’re wishing to sell, hit me up. Or if you see a sweet deal on a net book for less than $300, please send it my way. Otherwise I’ll be blogging via iPhone and public library computer in Chicago.

I’m leaving my job in less than three weeks. I can’t even wrap my brain around that.

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The campaign season is just getting started

Yesterday Aryeh, Stacey and Stacey’s boyfriend Shane shot Aryeh’s two campaign ads back to back. We aired the first one this morning:

Chalk me and Stacey’s cameo appearances to two each. That’s right. My second one comes this Friday, in John Cunningham’s ad, a response to the above one of Mowry’s. We have almost 50 fans of “The Candidate” on Facebook and Stacey made us this helpful short url for the page, facebook.com/CandidateSeries. Owen made a sweet Flash intro for the show and once Final Cut comes in (hopefully tomorrow) I will see how it looks with the show’s footage. It’s hilarious, I love it. I can’t wait to learn my way around Final Cut Express and I wish it was here already, grrr. My dad encouraged me to enter a film festival in Marietta, near my hometown. Since “The Candidate” wasn’t done I submitted a DVD of “Paper Cuts”. The festival had two categories: under 50 minutes, and over 50 minutes. It said nothing about entering a web series, but I decided to enter it in the former category. We’ll see what happens.

John Cunningham for mayor

Paid for by John Cunningham

Tonight we went to Weinland Park in Italian Village to shoot John Cunningham’s response ad, which we will air a week from tomorrow on our Facebook page and YouTube channel. It was a lot of fun and Bill did great as usual. He’s so funny and he really gets the character, even though John Cunningham is nothing like Bill. He ad-libbed a really funny bit at the end that I left in, with some text running over top of it advertising the show’s website. It’s done and edited but we aren’t airing it until Friday, after Aryeh’s first one hits Monday morning.

Aryeh purchased http://www.CandidateSeries.com just now, and Stacey’s been hard at work designing the site. I wrote some content last night and we should be pretty well on track with that before Oct. 1, our series premiere.

On Sunday, we’re filming Aryeh’s two campaign ads back to back at Owen and Jamie’s house, on their porch. I wrote the scripts last night and Aryeh made some small changes to them today. He seemed pretty happy with them. If his turn out like Bill’s did, we’ll have some pretty amazing promotional material to run before the show starts up.

Meanwhile, I’m taking the plunge and purchasing Final Cut Express tomorrow. As soon as that sucker comes in I’ll be shut up in my room editing on no sleep for days. I can’t wait!

Building buzz for a web series

The other night before the photo shoot with Bill, Aryeh made the interesting suggestion that we do some fake campaign commercials. I’m pretty sure it was just because he wants more screen time beyond his face appearing on a giant sign in one scene, but it turned out to be a pretty good idea once we got rolling. As a result, we brainstormed most of our marketing strategy for the web series.

When Bill got to the shoot, we ran the idea of a campaign ad by him and he was down with it. We’ll do a positive one surrounding Aryeh’s character, Mike Mowry, and another one of Mowry in an attack ad against Cunningham. We’re not sure yet which Cunningham’s will be a response to but I’m going to do some writing soon. My friend Andrew has agreed to donate his son’s time so we have a baby for either Aryeh or Bill to kiss. So ridiculous. Have you seen any crazy ads for or against candidates? Do share. We’re shooting the ads the Wednesday and Thursday after Labor Day and we’re also looking for a guy to do a really dramatic voiceover or two.

We plan to air one of Mowry’s ads first, then Cunningham’s a couple days after, followed by Mowry’s second one. This will be followed by a two-minute trailer of the show itself. Hopefully by this point our friends, family and acquaintances will be more intrigued than annoyed by all this buzz.

On top of these fake ads and trailer giving the name of the series at the end (and hopefully a website/YouTube channel), we’re going to embellish the hideous site Stacey made for Cunningham. We’ll also create Facebook fan pages for each candidate and try to get our friends to join them. We can post funny status updates in character and stuff, that could be cool.

I started a gmail account under the name CandidateSeries (TheCandidate and TheCandidate2010 were taken, boooo). Stacey has agreed to create a site as part of her personal one to host the series, and she does spectacular work. I would have loved to have had a site just for “Paper Cuts” but I had no way of getting one at the time.

Anyway, so that’s the plan. I hope it works and doesn’t backfire. We’ll have to be careful not to overexpose the thing next month. After all the build up we’ll air episodes on Mondays and Fridays in October. If we have more than 8 episodes, we might air them Monday, Wednesday and Friday until they’re done. We’ll see.