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A Painless Extraction
If you've watched Jon Fairbanks's release, God Hates Me, then in addition to enjoying Jon's remarkable performance, you probably found yourself grooving to that wacky track playing throughout. And, say, aren't those the lyrics to the Full House theme song... old-school rap-ified?The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Shoot
The track in question is "A Painless Extraction," a wonderful confection put together by Mr. WiL Whitlark. It just kind of happened one night about four years ago while Patrick Svensson and I were hanging around WiL in his basement studio. Patrick did some freestyling, rapped the most awesome rendition of the Full House theme these ears could ever hope to hear, and threw in some Family Guy and Brak Show references for good measure. WiL spiced it up with some bizarre cackling noises I'd made earlier in the evening. You can now listen to it in all its glory independently. Happy 2008!
EDIT: For some horrible reason, the Flash player that I'm using refuses to work with Blogger (or vice versa... probably vice versa). So to hear this delectable track, head over to the God Hates Me page.
Mark Andrus, Jon Fairbanks, and I wrote Terror Drives a Van on the set of Hopscotch Hotshots in 2004, with the intent to shoot it in 2004, in time for Halloween of that year. When we missed that deadline, we said to ourselves "2005, then." But 2005 didn't happen. Nor did 2006. Then, toward the end of September, Enoch told me that we could totally do it this year. Initially, I laughed and said "No, we don't..."The Long Lost Jon Chronicles
"Yeah, we could totally do it this year."
When something's been gestating as long as three years, it begins to feel like a pipe dream, like that awesome themed party you were totally going to throw in your junior year of high school that still flashes across your mind in your twenties. Hell, it would be a good excuse to invite Sarah Wilson... née Smith, now. Suitably, then, when the camera was rolling and I had my face covered in white makeup, it was something of a surreal experience.
The shoot was even more rushed than we'd intended. The part of the werewolf was written for Patrick Svensson. While out location scouting for the project, Patrick got a call that his wedding date had moved up... and now conflicted with our shooting date. That Sunday, he'd be moving to New York. So, in turn, we pushed up our shoot date by a day.
Thus, on the eve of Patrick's wedding day, we got dressed up like a vampire and a werewolf and commenced a ten-hour shoot. In the rain.
Utah's funny like this. As we get into Autumn, the days are nice, cool, and sunny. It truly makes for some of the best weather we get during the year. But that's only during the weekdays. I wish I were exaggerating, but I've observed the pattern this year: the only bad weather comes on weekends. As Enoch and I drove down to Provo, we saw the clouds coming in over the mountains. It was going to rain. And most of our shoot was to be, by necessity, outdoors.
But we made do. I wish I had a picture to post of Enoch sharing a wildly flapping poncho with the camera, sitting uncomfortably in the back of Andy Whittaker's truck as we drove down University Avenue.
I am not an acting powerhouse, but it was concluded that I pretty much had to play the vampire: it was part of the original plan, and I more or less had the look for it. So, I was trying to direct and act at the same time, a challenge that I managed, but not one I'm inclined to tackle again. Midway through the evening, I had a dreadful realization: I was losing my voice. It was the beginning of a week-long illness, with queasy digestion, miserable fever, and pounding headaches. By the end of the night (3:00 a.m.), it had crested. We shot the last bit of my dialogue mere minutes before my voice was nothing but a hoarse whisper.
Most fortunately, for the very last bit of the night--some of the most complicated shooting we've ever had to do--the rain let up right before we arrived on location. Even more fortunately, the second shoot the following week was completely rainless, abating a few hours before we shot.
The title of this post is a misnomer, though. Despite the rain, the disease, the tiredness, and the minor drama that has tactfully been omitted from my account, we actually had a pretty good time. And it doesn't really matter whether or not we had a good time, anyway. What matters is whether or not we got what we needed to get. Which we did. Expect to see a completed Terror Drives a Van before too long.
Labels: Terror Drives a Van
Updated: The long lost movies I did in '06 are now up under the bdc logo. Hurrah and Huzzah forever. These two movies are titled "Battle of the Sams" and "God Hates Me". God Hates Me was filmed at Utah Valley State College and was intended to be a one minute movie but turned out better as a three minute movie. Battle of the Sams was my try at doing fight scenes and it turned out well enough but I know now what to do better next time. Have a good look at them and be happy that we now have more content for the '06 season.
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