Tuesday, February 26, 2019

filmmaker: a diary by george lucas

I’m reading Brian Jay Jones’ biography of George Lucas. In the section on Coppola’s The Rain People, he mentions that Lucas shot a making of documentary called Filmmaker: A Diary by George Lucas. Sure enough, it’s on vimeo. It’s only 27 minutes, but it’s really good and well worth a look. It’s fascinating to watch Coppola before he changed cinema a few years later with The Godfather. It’s a great companion piece to that essential making of documentary, Heart of Darkness. It’s curious to see how little success had change Coppola in terms of how he talked about and approached making movies. The budgets and scale were much bigger, but the filmmaker was essentially the same.

Filmmaker - A Diary By George Lucas from Michael Heilemann on Vimeo.

Monday, February 25, 2019

what's in an author photo?

The one question I get emailed more than anything is about the author’s photo on the back of the book. Is that a photo of me? No, it is not. I took a photo of my kids a number of years ago, and I was struck by the expression on my son’s face. I immediately thought it looked like a photo one would see on the back of a book. I made a copy of the photo, cropped out my daughters, and saved it with the thought I might use it sometime. I didn’t know how long it would take me to finish this first book. Why did I use a photo of my son instead of one of me? There are a couple of reasons for this. One, most important, no one wants my fat, orange head on the cover of anything. Two, I thought it was funny. Many author photos look a bit silly. The author looks so serious, so important, so pretentious. Look at me! I’m a serious writer. Or the photos look like something you would take your senior year of high school. I wasn’t too interested in doing that. Well, you might ask, couldn’t you have just not had included a photo at all? Yes, for sure. But I thought this would be a little more fun. The picture reminded me of a photo I once saw of Truman Capote. I can’t remember what book it was. I thought it would be tongue in cheek. An attempt, perhaps feeble, to have a little fun with the cover. I realize that it might not be too smart to mess around with something I’m actively hoping people will buy and read, especially since it is a “joke” that almost no one will get and only I will find amusing, but there you go. I assumed it would be self-evident that the photo was not me, but I’ve received a few emails letting me know that they found it hard to believe that a ten year old could have written a “story like this.” Which, I don’t know. That reaction tickles me a bit. I can’t help it.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

texas chainsaw massacre

A few people have asked about the trailer for Scribbled Love Dreams. The idea was inspired (stolen) from the opening crawl of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. If you haven't seen that movie, what is wrong with you? Stop what you're doing and seek it out. It's still one of greatest horror movies ever made. Not only is it a brilliant orchestration of terror, but it does so with very little blood and gore. The dinner scene is still one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen in a movie.

Friday, February 8, 2019

new logo

My wife and daughter designed the logo for the publishing imprint Five Body Blade Books. It looks amazing.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019