At the age of 4, I decided I wanted to be a film maker and a story teller. Every day since then, I’ve played movies through in my head – my own stories, complete with dialogue, camera angles, soundtracks – all I’ve ever wanted was to bring these stories to life, to share with the world the things that live in my head. My parents got me my first camera, encouraged my creativity, and I spent every moment visualizing how my films would someday look. My dad showed me how to shoot stop motion, and before you knew it I was filming my Godzilla toys moving around and fighting. More than a few teachers gave me worried looks when they read the sci-fi and horror I wrote for grade school projects, or saw the monstrosities that I was drawing during class. I still remember at 6 writing a story about aliens taking over earth, enslaving mankind by putting their brains in robotic bodies and using them as slaves. It only got worse from there (or better, in my opinion).
Years later I earned my degree in Film and TV. I didn’t want to depend on others while living as a “starving artist”, so I made a game plan for myself to achieve what I wanted, while still being a responsible adult. I worked a lot of jobs through (and just after) college – Private Investigator (yeah, you pee in a bottle on steakouts, they don’t show that part in movies), retail, Karate Instructor, etc. Finally I landed a job in television. I worked in television for years, saving up, working 16 hour days and worse. My experience at that time included working with Emmy award winning cameramen, lighting multiple sets per day, being the audio mixer guy, being the boom mic guy, being the grip, the gaffer, working the camera and pulling focus – you name it, I did it. It was hard work, but at last I had saved up enough to start my own production company.
Once I was self employed, there was no going back. My company took on commercials, weddings, and corporate events. It wasn’t quite my passion, but it was working for myself and honing my skills in both photography and cinematography, while stockpiling the gear I’d need in the future. As the clients came in, I invested in more and more gear, slowly buying what I needed both for my company and for my future plans as a filmmaker. I trained my employees, gave private lessons, and studied relentlessly to improve my craft. I wanted to be prepared when we finally took on our own personal projects.
At last I had reached a point where we had much of the equipment, and most of the necessary skills to make our own film. I sat down with my wife (who also works in the TV industry) and together we wrote the script for The Crawling Chaos. Our goal was to make a short story that captured the heart of Lovecraft – the strangeness, the cosmic indifference, the horror, that feeling of discovering something ancient and sinister in the hidden away backwoods, where nobody had ventured in centuries. It was to be a short story, something to test the waters before even more ambitious films on the horizon. It had a sort of film-noir feel to it, drawing on my memories as an investigator and my near absolute knowledge of the Cthulhu Mythos, to craft something Lovecraftian but original.
Of course, once we began pre-production, the project grew, the ideas grew, and before long the script was something really special – something to stay with you, something that you and your friends talk about and watch again and again. The challenges grew larger, the scenes grew more difficult – and as the guy doing the filming, directing, lighting, editing, etc – it became a huge task to take on. With the help of our small crew, we brought the project to 90% completion on a budget of pretty much nothing. At that point, with a couple scenes still to film, post production to be done, and a few pieces of equipment needing to be rented/bought, I decided it was time to take the project to Kickstarter. My goal isn’t just to finish this movie, which has been an amazing journey in itself. It’s to take the knowledge and resources we’ve gained in making this film, and carry them on to bigger projects, becoming more ambitious with each one. Our goal is to grow our production company, and with the help of Kickstarter backers and investors, achieve our dream of being a full time movie production studio.