Friday, November 27, 2009

Christmas Gifts Filmmakers Want

Christmas Gifts Filmmakers Want

While we're on the subject, here's my book,

Sam Longoria's Digital Filmmaking Handbook.

Sam Longoria
Digital Filmmaking Handbook
Sam Longoria's Digital Filmmaking Handbook

Monday, November 23, 2009

Film Production - In Praise of Harlan Ellison

In Praise of Harlan Ellison

In junior high in Seattle, I remember tuning in the brand-new "Star Trek" show, completely by accident. Had no idea what it was. First episode I saw was "City On The Edge Of Forever." I loved it, and watched the show ever after. I did notice that the quality of subsequent episodes wasn't as good.

In high school, my friend Merlin did something for which I am still grateful, slipping me a copy of Harlan Ellison's "A Boy And His Dog," saying, "This is the dirtiest story I ever have read." It certainly was. I HAD to read it, and enjoyed it tremendously.

Then I went away to Hollywood to make movies. I worked on a whole bunch of visual effects movies, many of them Oscar-worthy, with large budgets. Eventually, I grew tired of tech stuff, and set out to create my own Art and Movies again.

For a dozen years, I owned and ran an improv comedy theatre in Hollywood. While I was painting my theatre seats, a nice lady volunteer helped me, and we got to talking. She listened as I went on and on about what books and shows I liked.

I mentioned Harlan Ellison's work, and why he was one of my absolutely favorite Writers, and she listened more intently.

Then she told me some Harlan Ellison details I'd never heard. A little more conversation revealed her to be Harlan Ellison's ex-wife. Now THAT was an interesting surprise.

Then one morning, I went to put garbage into my dumpster behind the theatre. I couldn't, because it was full of Harlan Ellison's office garbage. Notes, envelopes, papers, all with his name. 

I wrote him a note, saying I had a Hollywood dumpster full of his garbage, and I wanted to put it on display at my theatre, with his name on the sign out front.

My collection lacked the personal touch, and did he have any personal garbage? Fruit rinds, coffee grounds, that sort of thing?

I left my phone numbers, and he called me on most of them the next day, and we had some of the most fun phone conversations I've ever had. He's not just a good Writer, he's a dazzling conversationalist, too. A smart and funny man. And those are just the best.

Why was his garbage in my dumpster? That's not important, but if you send me $2, I will make up something.

I asked him once, if it bothered him Jim Cameron swiped his TV shows to create "The Terminator." He said, "Nope! As long as they pay me money." He is my role model on that topic.

Pay The Writer

I've enjoyed Harlan Ellison's work for years and years, I have crossed paths with him enough to know he is brilliantly smart and creative, and that puts him at odds with lots of mediocre people. 

Long live Harlan Ellison!

Sam Longoria


Poor Harlan had a heart bypass in 1994.

Then he had a stroke in 2014.

Harlan proved himself amazingly strong and resilient, and didn't let those things stop him, or even slow him down really, to an amazing degree.

28 June 2018, Harlan passed away, and today I mourn.

Harlan Ellison was great, and I'm glad our paths crossed, and I always will value his wit and his great advice. I learned many things from him, about Writing and Marriage and Dealing With Life. And what else is there?

Farewell, Harlan.
We might have argued about it, but
I truly believe I will see you again.

Harlan Ellison
City On The Edge Of Forever
A Boy And His Dog
The Terminator
The Outer Limits
The Twilight Zone
I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thanksgiving - Movies I Love

Thanksgiving - Movies I Love

Man! I thought I knew movies. I thought, "Thanksgiving Day is coming. My favorite holiday. Good food, good company, an attitude of gratitude. Time to see the movies I always see this time of year."

Then, I tried to list them, but I couldn't.
Because there aren't any.

You may have already noticed this horrifying revelation yourself. There are no great Thanksgiving movies. It's true.

Christmas movies, we got. Every year, there is at least one brand-new studio movie meant to dilute and world-ize and cheapen the beautiful Christmas story. Happens every year.

New Year's Day, Groundhog Day, Valentine's Day, those holidays have movies, but not Thanksgiving Day.

Growing up, I remember the Rankin-Bass Christmas animations, and Charlie Brown Christmas, and "The Homecoming" for Christmas, and "It's a Wonderful Life" covered both Christmas and New Year. And the Dolly Madison snack cake Arbor Day special of course, everybody remembers those, but there was nothing for Thanksgiving, and that was my favorite holiday.

No guilt, no straining of one's finances, no responsibility for somebody else's Christmas joy. Nothing was expected of you at Thanksgiving, just sit down and eat. And to capacity! And beyond! A capacity unimagined at other times of the year. A creaking, groaning, falling-down packed stuffed fullness that seriously threatened to take you out, some terrifying excessive November. 

So I guess I really didn't need a Thanksgiving movie, just food.

So I roasted a turkey, and had WILD SIDE Theatre Actor friends over for Thanksgiving Dinner, several times. It was fun, and we weren't just a bunch of Hollywood refugees, stuck in Hollywood, away from friends and family. We were all alone, together.

Another John Hughes road-buddy movie set at Thanksgiving,

is 1991's "Dutch." Not as good a cast, and the story seems...familiar, about two guys who really want to get home, go through great difficulty getting there, and learn a the way.

Here's an odd Thanksgiving selection, but it has Thanksgiving significance for me.

I remember
Thanksgiving 1989. A bunch of us pale NW Evergreen animation people, at my pal Craig Bartlett's Hollywood place for a nice dinner.

I helped Craig with his 2x4 16mm animation stand, and our friend Matt Groening told us about his new animated segment for the "Tracey Ullman Show," a funny cartoon about Matt's family, growing up. 

A lot happened over the next 365 days. 


Directed by Jodie Foster, who always has a special place in my heart, this movie is called "Home For The Holidays," with a great cast. Some favorite Actors, all in the same story. A little sordid, as modern holiday stories made by Hollywood refugees tend to be, but it is very funny.

After that, I need something for dessert - pumpkin pie would be nice. Here's a little home-made Thanksgiving pumpkin pie stop-motion video.

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you are warm and dry, and thankful to be home with your loved ones, for a lovely meal.

Broadway Danny Rose
Planes, Trains And Automobiles
The Simpsons MovieHome For The Holidays
Pieces of April
Happy Thanksgiving Stop-Motion Video

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day - Best War Movies

Veterans Day - Best War Movies

November 11, Armistice Day. Veterans Day.

he eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. Official cessation of hostilities in the First World War, the Big One, the Great War. The War to End All Wars. At least in Europe, and...for only twenty years or so.

"Once, all the Germans were warlike and mean,
but that couldn't happen again.
We taught them a lesson, in Nineteen-eighteen,
and they've hardly bothered us since then."
-- Tom Lehrer, "MLF Lullaby," 1965

There have literally been hundreds of wars since 1945, the end of WWII, and I've quite given up on this being a peaceful planet, and ours being a peaceful species, that can get along with itself. After a certain point, I just had to quit hoping for any change in Humanity, and accept what IS.

(A good thing, too, that nobody ever asked for my opinion).

War will always be with us, whether you're pro- or anti-, and War is a favorite topic of filmmakers everywhere.

Veterans Day is a big holiday. Post Office and Banks are closed. Play the DVDs, open your eyes and heart, and solemnly reflect on Man's Inhumanity To Man.

Just so we don't get stuck in the Twentieth Century. Spartacus? War movie? Stanley Kubrick? Yes!

There were lots of war movies made during the Vietnam era.
"Full Metal Jacket." Best Vietnam War movie? Yes.

Also-Great Vietnam War Movie. Francis Ford Coppola's "Apocalypse Now."

Robert Altman's blood-soaked comedy, M*A*S*H. Set during the Korean war, but it's really about Vietnam.

Mike Nichols's Great, but too-cute-for-its-own-box office "Catch-22." About WWII, but really about Vietnam. (Recognize some Great Actors, as youngsters?)

Stanley Kubrick's end-of-the-world Nightmare Comedy about Nuclear War.
(Which we don't discuss any more, but it's more likely now than ever). "Dr. Strangelove or How I learned to Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb."

Great Cast (Lee Marvin, Robert Carradine, Mark Hamill), in
Samuel Fuller's masterpiece, "The Big Red One."

America is a land of contradictions. We believe passionately in Freedom and Rights, but historically, America has infringed some American citizens' Liberty.

This is the story of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the most-decorated US outfit of WWII. Composed of Nisei (2nd generation Japanese-Americans), they fought valiantly, despite losing their Rights and Property and Personal Liberty. Their story is inspiring, in "Go For Broke"

Last, but certainly not least, here's Audie Murphy, the most-decorated boy soldier of WWII, who came home to a celebrated movie career.

Audie was 5'5" tall, weighed 110 pounds, crazy brave enough to wipe out German tanks and machine guns and soldiers, while he was sick to death with Malaria.

Audie won 33 medals, including the Congressional Medal of Honor. The movie story of Audie's life was Universal's highest-grossing film for 20 years, until it was topped by "Jaws."

Audie Leon Murphy. Somebody must have told him his middle name means "Lion," because he was brave as one.

I'm a big fan of Audie, starting with his heroic story, playing himself on the big screen, in "To Hell And Back."

Happy Veterans Day! May America and Americans live up to her proud heritage, and take the high moral road.
God Bless America!

Friday, October 23, 2009

In Praise Of Soupy Sales

Filmmaking - There Was A Man Dept.

Soupy Sales was so funny and so talented. I loved him as a kid, and still remember many of his great jokes.

"If you brush your teeth twice a year, you'll see your Dentist three times a day!"

I remember seeing his tv show in black-and-white (tape or kinescope, it wasn't live in Seattle).

He did his noon show "Lunch with Soupy" from Detroit, and later an evening show from KABC in Los Angeles, with occasional big-name drop-ins. Other shows, in New York and L.A. again, oh it was wild.

Soupy was a regular panelist on lots of other national shows, like "Hollywood Squares," "To Tell The Truth," and "What's My Line."

Soupy's real name was Milton Supman, and his stage and radio name for a while was Soupy Hines (as the autographed picture reads).

Soupy was always funny, and what's as important, good-natured. A sweet guy. And...with the occasional wicked sense of humor. Maybe you've seen the clip where the crew sent a birthday topless stripper to his kiddie-show door.

Soupy collected $80,000 in US and Monopoly money, got suspended a week, and then went back on the air.

Parents were outraged, but why? What he did was not that much different from telling kids to buy cereal and send in the box tops, is it? On that level, his bit was high-level satire. Go Soupy!

Soupy Sales was such a fixture in my youth, and he lasted 83 years until today, and if you didn't see him growing up, well I just feel sorry for you.

I have Soupy Sales in my DVD collection.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Who Sings Chrysler 300c Ad With Dean Martin?

Who Sings Chrysler 300c Ad With Dean Martin?

It nagged me all night, so I looked it up. It's definitely Dino. Nobody else sounds that smooooth. Dean Martin's voice oddly mixes with the husky voice of...lovely Julie London.
Mix done by Matt Haines, wonderful photographer.

Matt grouses he was only paid a flat fee long ago, but hey Matt your work is in a national ad.

I do agree though - getting paid would be better! You can read about it here. Listen to the mixed song.

And here is Dean Martin & Julie London's album.

Dean Martin
Julie London
Chrysler 300c
Sway Me Now!
Dean Martin & Julie London's album
Matt Haines, best Ventura County photographer

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Firesign Theatre - And Why I Love Them

The Firesign Theatre - And Why I Love Them

They are the very best. Funny, witty, persistent, disciplined, weirdly cool. I know they're primarily radio comedians, but they have done video and movies. ("Everything You Know Is Wrong" is my favorite). They have affected my filmmaking profoundly, so I'm posting about them in my filmmaking pages.

I remember first hearing them in high school, they were so much funnier than the other new comedians of the early 1970s. Not standup, not sketches really, not entirely improv, but all the best elements of those, and an anarchic, surreal quality all their own.

I borrowed a copy of their album "Don't Touch That Dwarf, Hand Me The Pliers," and I listened to it until I'd worn it out, and you could see light through it.

If you remember what high school was like - maybe yours championed football over scholarship and encouraged sitting down and shutting up, as mine did - you may understand what was such a big deal - Firesign made it "okay" to be funny and smart.

40 years later, it's still that way. If you look up "funny" or "smart" in the dictionary, there are little pictures of the Firesign Theatre.

My friends and I had listening parties, and listened to all their albums. We were wild kids, and largely unsupervised, so we listened to them all.

"Don't Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me The Pliers,"
"Waiting for the Electrician or Someone Like Him,"
"How Can You Be in Two Places at Once When You're Not Anywhere at All,"
"The Tale of the Giant Rat of Sumatra,"
"Everything You Know Is Wrong," and of course,
In the next twenty years, I went to Hollywood, and worked on big movies, and owned an improv theatre, and produced movies and stage and radio shows myself.

I helped out in their studio, on their new comedy CDs, during the "Give Me Immortality Or Give Me Death," "Boom Dot Bust," and "Bride Of Firesign" era.  It was an incredible privilege to see them work, and glimpse their creative process. They are brilliant, and have evolved their own production style. I have to admit, it was nothing like I expected it to be.

They were Grammy-nominated for those works in 1998 and 2002, and we all went to the Grammy Awards in 2002. Because of security, we could only get within a few miles, and then rode a bus to the Staples Center.

When I got aboard, I remember Phil Proctor grinning at me, like the divinely-inspired fool he is, and they all are. Phil and I said together, "I think we are all Bozos on this bus." It wasn't particularly hard to think of, just perfect for the moment, and yes, funny.

Later, I was delighted to learn my Film Editing and Sound Designer idol,
Walter Murch is also a firehead. So is Matt Groening, and I'll bet if you love his "The Simpsons," Firesign's witty insanity is also a good mental fit for you. Think how far-reaching their influence is. Firesign has affected everybody. "They're in everybody's eggs."

They are touring again. If you are in traveling distance, and not actually incarcerated, run do not walk, and see their show. We will not soon see their like again.

Here's a cool article about The Firesign Theatre. Here's their website.

This just in...Check out their massive mp3 DVD called "Duke of Madness Motors." Say, "Sam sent me," and click my secret link. Shh!

9 March 2012
Peter Bergman passed away today.
I am grateful to Peter for the talks we 
had, and for what I learned from him. I remember being surprised that crusty Peter Bergman was quite the nice guy. He taught me not to be cynical, to be an idealist, and not just to watch life, but to dive in and be part of the parade. Thanks, Peter. We'll meet again.

19 June 2015
Rest in Peace, Phil Austin, you were always so great, made brilliant improvisation look easy, and you were soooo smart. I adored your work, and every minute I spent with you. Today you went bravely into...the Unknown. I'll see you again. I like to think you and Peter are already together, on the Other Side of the record. My deepest sympathy, and sincere condolences, to dear Oona, Philip and Melinda, and David and Judith. What all this brouhaha was about. "Further Adventures of Nick Danger, Third Eye"

A rare 1981 "Evening At The Improv" appearance by the guys, hosted by Avery Schreiber and Bud Friedman

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Even rarer 1969 Firesign Theatre Jack Poet Volkswagen commercial in Los Angeles, 
with all the important numbers spelled out for you.

Sam Longoria

best comedy
radio comedy
firesign theatre
firesign theatre

best comedy movies
Phil Proctor
Phil Austin
Peter Bergman
David Ossman

Friday, August 28, 2009

Film Production - The Best Movie Ever?

Film Production - The Best Movie Ever?

A German friend compiled this list,
I'm not sure if it's even near a true "100 best,"
as there are several films on it I think are only "okay,"
but this is not my list. This is Franz List.

So ponder it, or...just enjoy the clips...

Here's a great idea, carried to its logical extreme, because...

"Anything worth doing is worth overdoing."
-- Sam Longoria

Countdown of numbers in your favorite 100 movies.
I may have posted this before. I don't care. It's great.

Another great idea. Thank God cellphones are not ubiquitous, omnipresent, or even everywhere, because they would easily screw up some truly great cinema.

Yes, I know "Gilligan's Island" is not primarily a movie, but
there really is a Gilligan movie in development for 2011.

It obviously needs three full development years, to make sure it's just as good as it can possibly be. Perhaps that is not enough time. Take as long as necessary, guys. Don't rush it!

I hope it comes out after the end of the world in 2012,
adding Insult to Apocalypse. Anyway, these clips are funny.
Ignore the University Of Phoenix ad. I'm not listening, la la la...

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Film Production - My Favorite Film Of 2009

Film Production - My Favorite Film Of 2009
(No matter what's in theatres before New Year).

This made me want to make a movie again!

It reminds me of Richard Lester's "Running Jumping Standing Still"
and Norman McLaren's "Neighbours." Both of which I love.

Running Jumping Standing Still Film (excerpt)


Hope David Berry continues with "The Tourist," and tells its story.
Quite compelling watching.

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Film Production - There Was A Man - Karl Malden

Film Production - There Was A Man - Karl Malden

Karl Malden was sooo good, in "On The Waterfront,"

and "A Streetcar Named Desire," and many others.

What great technique, so committed.
What a magnificent career, and a good, long life.

And here, with another perspective, is a really
good writer with two minutes for rebuttal.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Sanyo Xacti HD1000 - Don't Buy Until You Read This!

Sanyo Xacti HD1000 - Don't Buy Until You Read This!

Straight out of a movie, "2001 - A Space Odyssey." We're on the moon for an important briefing. Powerful people are waiting, they've traveled 250,000 space miles.

Photographer wears a weird 2001 too-slim checkered suit, and holds a little camera that looks like a photographer's spot meter. He looks through it, and takes his shot. Silent, no "click." He's done shooting. He's off. That's a dream camera.


Sanyo Xacti HD1000 is a "True HD" camera. Its pictures are 1090 x 1920 dots, at 60 fps (i)nterlace or (p)rogressive. Easy to make 24p in editing.

(Magic Bullet or Cineform convert 60i to 24p. In Cinema Tools, DUPLICATE YOUR CLIPS, and then batch process your 60p to 24p. (Cinema Tools works only on QuickTime format files). Then, in Final Cut Pro, drag those clips to your Timeline, and set their frame rate to "250%," to make them 24fps. )

Xacti styling is great, reminds me of my Eumig Super 8mm, only it makes movies you can play on any HDTV in the world, and it costs LESS than my old S8mm camera cost me!

10:1 optical zoom, which replaces a full set of lenses. It's got the Sanyo "blue spot" lens flare under overhead light, so shade it or flag it, or learn to love the flare.

Cute, little, sexy. So is the camera.

Dave in Edinburgh loves his Sanyo Xacti HD1000.

I love my Flip, but it only shoots 720 dots, and the Xacti has a REAL LENS. When I need the HD real deal, I put my Xacti in my pocket, and I'm ready to roll. You can't buy this camera unless you appreciate it's really cool, and it looks great, and it's fun to use. Please tell me how you use your Xacti.

Sanyo Xacti HD1000 Camcorder

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Friday, June 12, 2009

Gilbert and Sullivan, Qualex and Calynx, Kodak and Utopia Limited

Film Production - Gilbert and Sullivan, Qualex and Calynx, Kodak and Utopia Limited

As you may know, and I note with sadness, due to new digital imaging processes, Eastman Kodak ceased operating its Qualex photofinishing facilities this year, 2009.

Qualex sacked many people at their 53 laboratories, and operations at their 43,000 stores across the US were, um, shuttered. Eastman Kodak is still in business, providing digital and photochemical products and services.

"Kodak" was trademarked in 1888, and the Eastman Kodak company was formed in 1892. With its popular advertising slogan "You press the button, we do the rest," Kodak simplified complex photography, and made amateur snapshots easy.

In this current year of 2009, I'm looking forward to a wonderful production of Gilbert & Sullivan's "Utopia Limited," which was first produced in 1893.

"Utopia Limited" is a brilliant show, lampooning corporate shenanigans, war, riots, takeovers, and bailouts. To make it current to the imploding 2009 economy, fewer than a dozen words needed changing.

In "Utopia Limited," my favorite character is Qualex, er, Calynx, Vice Chamberlain of the Topsy-Turvy island paradise of Utopia.

In his "Utopia" lyrics, W.S. Gilbert actually mentions the timely snapshot craze, and Kodak by name. On introduction, the King's twin teenage daughters sing:

Then all the crowd take down our looks
In pocket memorandum books.
To diagnose
Our modest pose
The Kodaks do their best.

If evidence you would possess
Of what is maiden bashfulness
You need only a button press...

And we will do the rest.

Sleep, my little Qualex. Good night, sweet prints.


Utopia Limited
Gilbert and Sullivan
Seattle Gilbert & Sullivan Society
film school
film financing
film production
passion for cinema
digital filmmaking handbook

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Techno-Lust - Flip MinoHD Camcorder

Techno-Lust - Flip MinoHD Camcorder

Okay, it's cute and it's lightweight and takes HD that'll play
on your home tv
. Its USB plugs right into your computer so you
can edit and polish your movie you made with a camera that
fits in your pocket. Okay, I get it.

I'm a film guy who's worked with every big camera there is,
and Heaven help me, I have one of these.
Let me know how you like yours.

Flip MinoHD Camcorder

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Chef Luis Aguilar Represents USA at 2009 World Gourmet Summit in Tokyo

Chef Luis Aguilar Represents USA at 2009 World Gourmet Summit in Tokyo

Congratulations to Chef Luis Aguilar, The Dancing Gourmet, chosen by World Gourmet Summit, representing USA in Tokyo this fall.

What has this to do with Film Production? Chef Luis and I are Producing a movie together. Go Luis!

Chef Luis Aguilar, The Dancing Gourmet

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Film Production - Double Feature

Film Production - Double Feature

One of my favorite movies is "The Magic Christian." Peter Sellers is Sir Guy Grand, the Richest Man In The World. Ringo Starr is his adopted son, Youngman.

Together, Peter and Ringo wreak havoc on British society, with briefcases full of cash and a rich sense of justice. They bribe others into outrageous, insane, and bizarre behavior. Just because.

Here's "The Magic Christian" trailer:

Insanely great supporting cast. Lawrence Harvey, Richard Attenborough, Christopher Lee, Raquel Welch, various Monty Python players, various Beatles, various Goons, oh it's a rich dish, in every spoonful.

Fabulous script, from Terry Southern's novel. Much is changed from Terry's book (Not set in Portland, Oregon for one thing). Wonderful, truly wonderful. A certain R. Polanski is serenaded by a lovely lady.

Even a great movie needs to be promoted, these things don't sell themselves, you know. Here's Ringo, guesting on "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In," from NBC in Beautiful Downtown Burbank.

Nowhere near the same league, but somewhat the same idea, this is "The Magic Christian Continued," sort of. Improv troupe stages a bizarre mirror incident on a NYC train. Reactions and reflections are great! Enjoy.

"The Magic Christian"

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Friday, May 01, 2009

Klingon Translator Celebrates 20th Anniversary


John Halvorson, a Hollywood screenwriter, started a Star Trek movies fan club in Seattle in 1979. That club died when John moved to Michigan.

In 1989, John formed another club, The Klingon Assault Group (KAG), based on the "bad guys" of the Star Trek movies franchise, the Klingon Empire. That club is still going strong, 20 years later.

The Klingon Assault Group (KAG) officially celebrates its 20th Anniversary this year at MARCON (The Midwest's Premiere Fantasy & Science Fiction Convention) May 22nd - 24th 2009 (Memorial Day Weekend) The MARCON convention will be held at Hyatt Regency Hotel, 350 North High Street, Columbus, Ohio USA.

Between 200 and 300 fans, dressed as Klingons will seize the Hyatt Regency Hotel. That makes Marcon the largest gathering of Klingons ever.

KAG is headed these days by the fearsome "Thought Admiral Kerla," who is actually Carol Nye, an Earth woman from Hamilton, Ohio.

Now, in Hollywood, John dresses up after-hours as a Klingon, named "Thought Admiral Kris," (pictured) complete with uniform, headpiece and wig, for Star Trek movies and science-fiction conventions. "It's fun," John says.

In various Star Trek movies and tv shows, Klingons are a pretty serious-minded bunch. It is official policy that Klingons don't have fun - ever. However, John Halvorson disagrees.

What do Klingons generally do for fun? "Feasting, drinking, head-butting, and fighting."

Klingons have changed over the years, and John prefers the early era Klingons, before there was peace between the Federation and the Klingon Empire. John says, "Playing the Antagonist is so much more fun."

Halvorson, is quite an active Klingon, too. He's not only the club's Founder, but his alter-ego is a Klingon Translator, Thought Admiral Kris, Commanding a Klingon star ship, the "IKV Dark Sun."

John will be on hand at the MARCON event, dressed as his Klingon alter ego, and Sam Longoria, a Hollywood Movie Producer, will take time off to put on his own Klingon headpiece and makeup to play Khaytel, The Klingon Promoter.

These days, Halvorson and Longoria run a Hollywood Klingon fan group, "The Imperial Trade Mission (ITM)."

The Mission has meetings in Hollywood, and is working to get Michael Dorn, the Actor who played "Worf," on "Star Trek: The Next Generation," a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Michael Dorn played the Klingon "Worf," who grew up in Federation Space, through a number of STAR TREK movies and tv. Mr. Dorn's portrayal sparked much new interest in Klingons.

John Halvorson has two grown-up kids. What do they think of Dad's Klingon getup? "They're okay with it -- usually." laughs John.


ITM Contact
John Halvorson,

ITM Twitter

ITM Blog

KAG Online

KAG Contact
Carol Nye,

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Film Production - LA Location Shooting Lowest On Record

Film Production - LA Location Shooting Lowest On Record

According to the Associated Press story, the number of movie and tv film productions shooting in the City of Los Angeles, California is now at an all-time low.

This breaks the all-time low
that was established last December 2008.

This year, there are 3 productions scheduled to shoot in LA.
Last year, there were 165.
The year before, there were 430.

C'mon people! This is Hollywood CA USA. The Entertainment Capital of the world. It's sunny, we have all the talent, and there are girls in bikinis.

Who's our only real competition? Various Europeans, and a bunch of frostbitten Englishmen in some former colonies. Oh, and a billion Indians, and about as many Chinese. Never mind.

There are a lot of them, and they are really, really smart.
But we have nowhere else to go, and we are really, really cool.

Sunglasses on! Baggy shorts! Caps on backwards! Dude.

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Saturday, February 21, 2009

2009 Oscars - Sam's Oscar Report 2009

2009 Oscars - Film Production - Sam's Oscar Report 2009

Sam's 2009 Oscar Report is available here.

© 2009 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Filmmaking - Independent Film Palace

Filmmaking - Independent Film Palace

Sixty years is a long time for a business, and a movie house
that's lasted over half a century is out of the ordinary, these days.

Here's the story of a theatre that decided the run-of-the-studio
films weren't cutting it, and branched out into "art house" cinema.

What they discovered may surprise you. As a former theatre owner, all I can say is "Yep." Gotta love the movie biz.

© 2008 Sam Longoria, All Rights Reserved