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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

FORCERY World Internet Premiere: Download and Watch It NOW!!!

May 25, 2005. Ironically enough it's the 28th anniversary of the release date of the very first Star Wars movie Episode IV: A New Hope. The legendary story is that George Lucas was eating dinner in a restaurant across the street from Mann's Chinese Theater and didn't even realize until later that those throngs of people lined up outside the place were waiting to see his movie on opening day! Maybe lightning will strike the same date twice. Hey a guy can dream and wish right? :-)

So here it is, Forcery. You got several "flavors" of viewing sizes to choose from. Sometime soon we're going to have it where you can mail us a blank DVD and SASE and we'll return it to you (with a nice label if you pay a little extra to cover cost) with the movie, chapters selection feature, the gag reel, maybe a "making of" documentary, da works! Yah we're quite proud of our lil' film. But for now here's the viewing options for you to choose from. Special thanks to Ourmedia.org for providing hosting for these Quicktime files: Ourmedia.org is my new very bestest friend in the whole wide world! Or at least cyberspace.

Anyhoo, here ya go...

FORCERY Super Data Rate Large Size

Super Data Rate Large Version (467 MB, 480x270 resolution)
: the largest available online. Pretty darned close to DVD quality. This was the first one encoded, before I really knew what to do with Media Cleaner. But I'm going to leave this one up for sake of anyone who may desire to download and watch this one. Click here for this version's homepage at Ourmedia.org.
FORCERY Regular Large

Regular Large Size (358 MB, 448x252 resolution)
: slightly smaller resolution than the Super Data Rate Large format and a slightly smaller resolution, but I imagine this one will be what ultimately be considered as the "mainstream" one. The only real difference between this one and the previous version is that this one was encoded with a somewhat smaller data rate. Maybe just a little bit of artifacting (most apparent around the "FORCERY" logo at the beginning, hence why screenshots of that are up) but otherwise a perfectly good large version. Click here for this version's homepage at Ourmedia.org.

Medium Size (193 MB, 384x216 resolution)
: this one should be more "friendly" for anyone who's on a dialup connection, at least if they're okay with leaving the computer running all night after praying that nothing severs the connection. Ooh-boy, I still remember the old days of Trumpet WINSOCK on the Windows 3.1 machine that I was using right up 'til summer of '99. Good times! Trumpet Winsock, it was a socket layer/Internet dial-up utility that went between Windows 3.1 and the Internet, from the days before Windows came with built-in Internet capability. And you weren't supposed to be able to use it continuously unless you paid for the registered version but ummm if you knew a certain lil' trick you could keep using it indefinitely. You just had to "reset" Winsock by uninstalling and then re-installing it once a month. It wasn't anything "illegal" per se, it was a pretty blatantly obvious vulerability that anyone was able to exploit. But that lil' ritual became burned in my gray matter permanently! And if you weren't too spoiled on how fast your college's Internet connection was it was pretty good... until it got ticked-off and sometimes DISCONNECTED on you while you were doing 'net chat with that cute co-ed at the next campus over. Anyway, there's no shame in admitting it if you don't have a cable modem: lots of folks still don't, and cable and wireless can't go everywhere, right? Our first year of marriage, Lisa and I lived in a rented house so far out in the country that cable TV isn't scheduled to arrive for another forty years or so (telling you here and now I nearly went stark raving mad without my dose of The Powerpuff Girls). Or it could be that you're doing missionary work in the middle of Borneo and you're lucky enough to have a halfway decent 'net connection. Leave the computer running in your tent and pray the screen's glare doesn't attract any malaria-ridden mosquitoes or direly hungry lion in mating season, and you should be able to watch this version just fine. Click here for this version's homepage at Ourmedia.org.

Micro Size (97 MB, 256x144 resolution)
: I mentioned in my earlier post this afternoon about how I made this size so that it would all fit neatly onto a 128 USB "flash drive" that Lisa found for me awhile back. I can carry the entire movie - plus a Quicktime installer for Windows XP - around in my pocket with this version. Or since the flash drive has this lanyard on it, I can hang the movie around my neck. Like the proverbial dead albatross in that old poem The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. That's what it is to be a filmmaker: you carry this dead weight around your neck and it seems like you'll never lose it. Like you'll go to your grave with this thing dragging you down. Or maybe it will be what drags you into your grave. And you pray to God that the day will come that it will finally slip from off your neck and into the depths of the sea and you'll be free to gaze upward a free man at last. Whatever. I think this may be my favorite of the versions because ya gotta admit it is pretty cool to be able to carry an entire, almost-full-length motion-picture - that you and your friends made - around in your pocket! O the joys of modern technology. Anyway, this really is more or less a "gimmick" for my own amusement but I wanted to make it available all the same anyway. So download if ya like. Click here for this version's homepage at Ourmedia.org.
I couldn't finish this premiere without once again acknowledging the hard work and sacrifice, and dedication that so many people gave in making the dream of this film a reality. Especially Chad Austin and Melody Hallman Daniel, who play George Lucas and Frannie Filks, respectively. Go visit Chad's blog and Melody's website sometime, they and I will be glad that you did :-)

Thanks to not only my partner and collaborator but also one of my best friends in this world, Ed Woody, for co-directing and co-producing Forcery, in addition to a lot of other things.

Very special thanks to my wife Lisa (who has a small role in Forcery) and my parents, in whose home we filmed most of the Frannie's house scenes. Thanks to Dad for providing the weapons that were used as props, and to Mom for all the catering that she did (so that no one went hungry under the obsessive direction of ANOTHER filmmaker - who shall remain nameless - who tried to become too much like George Lucas by demanding "FASTER, MORE INTENSE!!"). Lisa deserves all the praise in the world for putting up with me while I was working on this thing.

Thanks to Short Sugar's Drive-In of Reidsville, North Carolina for letting us film the Mel's Drive-In scenes at their restaurant. Thanks to Charity Baptist Church of Greensboro, North Carolina for use of the church parking lot (where some of the crash was shot) and the church offices (used for Sheriff Boozer's office and Steven Spielberg's office scenes). Thanks to Kenneth and Laurie Wright and their family for allowing us to film the Skywalker Ranch scenes in their home.

Additional photography was done on the Blue Ridge Parkway, including the area around Mount Mitchell, and the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. The library scene was film at University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Many other notes of thanks are included in the end credits of Forcery.

Okay, enough talk out of me.

Go watch Forcery, now.

Or, perish in flames.

It's your choice. But, not really.


Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Chris! Look, Academy Awards!

Anonymous said...

After the Academy Awards, a multi-million dollar, 3 picture deal. :-)

Anonymous said...

I laughed! I cried! It was better than CATS! Great job Chris! Glad to see you recovered after your shotgun injuries.

Anonymous said...

Hey, can I have the sheriff's hat? He won't be needing it. ;-) I assume that was the family-friendly shotgun blast.

Also, as a Kyle Williams fan, I thought that part with the sheriff watching Star Wars was hilarious.

Great fun.

Chris Knight said...

Glad you enjoyed it William :-) Yeah that was the "family friendly" version of my untimely demise. The FIRST version we did was... yech!! At least in this one you don't see bits of my spinal cord flying straight at the camera :-P

When I wrote the Boozer bedroom scene Kyle's book immediately sprang to mind. It's a neat nod toward a friend, and hey it's a free plug for HIM ("look Ma a bigger royalty check!!") There's a hundred or so little "in-jokes" all over the movie, some obvious but some a sly nod toward people we know in real life. The newspaper that Lucas (and later Boozer) is reading is a homage to the Asheville Tribune, a real-life weekly in Asheville NC that I used to be a reporter at. Other things are names of people that we went to college with.

It's fun to be a filmmaker and play with people's heads like this :-D

Anonymous said...

This is pretty frackin' funny.

Anonymous said...

I did catch the Asheville Tribune pointer, since I've been reading this blog since close to its inception, but I'm absolutely sure that I missed lots of less-obvious ones.

It's neat the stuff individuals can do with film and sound these days.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Chris. I've watched it twice now and it gets funnier with each play. I hope you go somewhere good with this, it really is a stroke of genius. Though I'm shaking my head at what made you use Slim Whitman music of all things :O

Chris Knight said...

William, if I've any complaints about how Forcery turned out, it would have to be dealing with the sound. We had two shotgun microphones bought just for the occassion but it was about our second or third day of principle dialogue filming when we realized that the mike input jack on the Sony Digital 8 camera (my own) wasn't working. So we had one camera (a Sony MiniDV) that was picking up GREAT audio and another that was picking up great audio but also stuff like the whir of the camcorder motor. By that point it was impossible to go back and refilm the stuff with better sound and given various circumstances it was completely unfeasible to get everyone back together for audio dubbing: our principles have very active lives outside of production (doing stuff more important than this movie, I should add). In the end, we had to work with what we had. We ended up doing a lot of "massaging" with Sony Sound Forge and the Noise Reduction plugin, *without* making it sound like a remake of "Mr. Roboto".

Maybe someone else could have done a lot better job with the material, but it did come out better than we had hoped it would be after discovering the audio inequality. Is this a perfect film? Not by a longshot. This baby may have its lumps, but its still our baby and we're all quite proud of how it turned out :-) But I did feel led to toss that out for sake of anyone who picked up on it, that we *were* aware of audio problems and tried our best to fix them.

Chris Knight said...

Thanks Padme Good, appreciate the kind words :-)

Anonymous said...

Dude, that was like _dense_. Very funny, but you weren't kidding about all the tiny things all over it. Great touch with the Wilhelm scream at the end of the fight (:

Anonymous said...

This was your first movie? This looks pretty darn pro. To quote a certain character you know well "impressive ... most impressive." Good job! You should make another.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Chris Knight said...

To that last "Anonymous" commenter: you sound too much like a particular someone who has been trying to smear this movie all over the Internet. I've heard about some of the dirtier tricks you've been up to. Your comment has been removed.

Anonymous said...

This is cheesy, but very funny. Bravo!

Anonymous said...

I think Frannie is hot!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Saw it. It might have been a little long but this was pretty good for a first movie. The "Redrum" flash in the crash ROTFLMAO!