As I put on Facebook the other day, I'm soooo close to have some AMAZING news to share with y'all, it makes me want to wee with excitement! But at the same time - this cursed film of ours has a funny way of biting you in the arse when you least expect it… so I'll stay schtum until the paperwork is signed!
In the meantime, as Steve Miller (and Seal) would say, time keeps on slipping/ into the future and the day of our release keeps getting closer and closer and closer. We have a press release just about ready to go (we'll probably share it here first - coz we're like that) and everything will be revealed there (or should that be here?).
Anyway - enough - I'm even confusing myself now. Over the weekend, we were supposed to be having our cast and crew screening - but as ever - events conspired against us (I really must've been a git in my past life!) and so instead we decided to start some real world marketing and PR. My mate Steve Wraith runs the Number 9 Bar at The Cosmic Ballroom (no not fake Shearers) every home match day and he kindly gave us the opportunity to leaflet the crowd before the Cardiff game.
He also said that rather than just leafleting we'd be better doing a wee talk on the microphone before the host, Joe Allon, interviewed the main attraction ex-Newcastle United striker Malcolm MacDonald! Pob and I nominated (ganged up on) James and made him do the little talk… You can see him in the photo above with Joe Allon and Supermac - he did okay, but he and I really need to work on our public speaking - lots of ums and erms - and let's face it, I bottled it!
As soon as James left the stage we had to jump in the car and fly up to The Parks Sports Centre in North Shields, where the 3rd Annual Screen-Con event was taking place. We actually got there in time, but they were running late, which gave us the opportunity to have a wander around the exhibition space and see what was going on. I got to meet David Warner (who is a completely legendary actor) and to say I was star-struck doesn't come close.
James got to have his photo taken outside the TARDIS from Doctor Who and with KITT from Knightrider. Meanwhile Pob got to fulfil a lifelong dream by punching a Dalek.
Anyway after surveying the room and handing out a few leaflets we decided to "pull" our scheduled Q and A - as the crowd was about as un-Stagg Do as you could imagine. Vicki, one of the organisers, had told me that it was a family event - but even so, I was unprepared for quite how many young children were there… And somehow promoting our tale of titties, beer and drugs felt horribly inappropriate. I mean a stag do is generally not exactly suitable content for a 10 year old. I'm many things but a corrupter of young children isn't one of them!
So all in all it was a mixed bag - we got to soft launch in front of some Newcastle United fans and legends and then we got to bottle doing a Q and A in front of some lovely sci-fi fans. And Pob got to punch a Dalek. This promotional lark is hard work, man!
Sorry I’ve been gone for so long - 14 months or so I reckon… so what’s shaking people? I really must apologise again for going radio silent for sooo long and I’d really struggle to explain what happened. Safe to say, we ran out of money - came close to raising investment twice, only to be disappointed at the final minute - and then as John Lennon said “life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans”. In other words while we’ve been scheming ways to get this film finished - 14 months went by and a shitload happened.
Anyway so sorry for being so crap people. We haven’t forgotten and we haven’t quit - it’s just that 2013 was a total clusterfuck of a year… We even discovered there’s a new Irish film (shot last year) - remarkably like ours called The Stag (I know - WTAF) that’s coming out in mid March. All I can say is DON’T GO AND SEE IT, especially not thinking it’s ours… Remember ours is authentic Geordie cinema - not Irish. And really sweary. Really, really sweary in fact. These delays could help us out though - on February 24th, 2014 the BBFC’s new certification guidelines kicked in; meaning we might yet get a 15 certificate!
So enough preamble and daft slavvering on - let’s do an update of where we are up to:
The grade is just about there - thanks Fantomeline (Steve, you ARE a trooper).
The bits of VFX that The Kid (aka Chris Nicholls) was undertaking have been finessed by our DoP, Richy Reay - without the graft of Chris though we’d’ve been stuffed ages ago.
Richy Reay has also created a couple of other VFX spots for us AND a really FANTASTIC opening credits sequence - seriously he’s a man of many talents!
Next up: the man, the legend, Aris has undertaken the mammoth task of sound post-production. Not an easy feat when you consider that we have 3 different sound recordists on the film! Anyway GIVE THE MAN A MEDAL - he’s cracking on with it.
Last Friday we had our first ADR session - with Sir Billy of Fellows (The Judge) at The East Wing Studio in Byker. It was a great success thanks to the skills of both Bill and ADR Supremo of the North East: Rich McCoull… Now how’s that for a cracking name???
FINALLY: I will be updating frequently over the next few weeks as we hurtle towards our release date (TBA ASAP) and the poster (created by the immensely talented Mark Jobson) will be available for your delectation shortly.
Thanks for not quitting on us.
Zahra, James and the Stagg Do team. x
Yesterday we shot the credits sequence for the film, and once again by all accounts a laugh was had by everyone on the shoot. We started out in Deep Nightclub in Whitley Bay, and really massive thanks must go to Johnny and all the people there for giving us the run of the place... Also thanks to Sarah Tennick, our second unit make up and art department queen for putting us in touch with the people at Deep. Our crew for this shoot was teensy weensy and somehow this enabled us to crack through a ton of stuff quite quickly. Tina Frank was back helping out the art and production departments, Aris handled sound-recording and Richy Reay DoP'd and op'ed which seemed to work well. Clooney (Nic Pringle) rounded off the team and was his usual versatile self. James and I made up the rest - so you can see when I say teensy weensy I'm not exaggerating in any way!
Another crap photograph by me
There's probably two things you can tell from the pictures - I am a totally crap photographer and the scenes yesterday were all about a hen do. As someone who has only every been on one hen do I had to do a far amount of asking around to help with this scene - as it happens my mate Stephanie who plays Elizabeth in the film is in her own words "the Hen Do Queen" so most of this research involved trawling through her many hen do albums on Facebook - LOL!
After Deep we had one more shot to get - of the hens outside, mid pub crawl. We decided in a rather impromptu fashion to shoot this on the Newcastle Quayside. We'd just completed the first take when two security guards asked us to move on... Who knew that the section near Malmaison and La Tasca was private property? Ho hum. We got the shot and you can't tell where it is - so that's all that matters. It's only the third time in 10 years of shooting that we've been asked to bugger off - and it's always been by private security guards! What is it with these over-zealous uniform wearers that makes them want to shunt filmmakers on? Nevermind - like I said - we got the shot!
Not by me (by Simon Herdman)
With the wrap on that sequence it means we have only one little bit of the film left to shoot - the opening of the movie - a flashback sequence. This is proving a bit of a mare to cast - I mean where the hell can I find two kids who look like Pob and Staggy as kids??? ===>
So if you know anyone who knows anyone who may have access to two kids who look like these two reprobates then please do drop us an e-mail info AT fnafilms DOT co DOT uk
In the meantime - keep coming back here for updates and if you like what you see please spread the word! We will soon be at picture lock and then comes the fun of the grade and sound mix; once these are completed we will be doing a few screenings to test the water and see if this film has any appeal beyond the North east of England.
Thanks once again to everyone who helped yesterday, especially the girls who showed up to be the hens (Jo Dutton, Sophie Blacklock and Naomi Mayfield), Therase Neve (Charlotte), Stephanie Gray (Elizabeth) and the wonderful Will Stevenson who played "the entertainment".
Finally a special thanks to Jamie at Picture Canning North and Ashley at Pinball Films.
Garbuttelli is up here at the moment, so instead of emailing project files back and forth we are actually all able to spend time in the edit together.
It's very gratifying to see the film take shape and once again James and I are grateful to everyone who has helped us get this far.
Will try our best to keep this busy during the shoot and post-production.