House of Hugs Productions

Julia Radochia's blog for her films, film festivals, and film in general, among other things...

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Location: Arlington, Massachusetts, United States

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Little Pen Lost on Vimeo



I have finally released Little Pen Lost online.  I'm having problems with the embed code on my website so I wanted to put it here to make it easier to find.

I hope you'll watch it, and if you feel like it, give it a rating on IMDB.  Thank you!

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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A Little Lost


Poster by Rose Kowalski

I've been working on a post about the making of "Little Pen Lost" and have been feeling kind of "eh" about it.  It's not that I don't have anything to say and not that I didn't enjoy the experience or love working with everyone.  But it's not like I feel like I really made a filmy-film.  I felt like I wrote and filmed a skit with really talented actors in it.  It serves well as a showcase for them.

The exception to the talented actors would be myself.  I had to act in it, because of a last minute drop out.  I think highly of the work Alison Wachtler, Zele Avradopoulos and Julio Robles in this film but but my comments above had nothing to do with my own acting.

Oh, and there's other kind of talent showcased in the film as well (music, cinematography and something else).  The only issues I have with anything around it is myself.

Actually, it isn't even the film -- it's where I am creatively.  Before doing the film I was working on a lot of scripts, many featurette to feature length.  I was feeling good about finishing some drafts and felt that I needed to keep working on those.  I was concerned that if I filmed something it would keep me away from writing.

I was right.  I haven't been able to do get back into writing that much.  But I'm still glad I did the film.   Really.  I needed that experience because if I get back into making longer films again (and by longer I mean 15 minutes even) I'm not going to feel good with 2007 being the last time I did any kind of real film production.  It just feels better to have done something more recently and to have worked on my directing skills.

So I did the film and it's gotten in some festivals (and won an award, too).  I'm really happy about that.  And in a way it's nice to feel like I did what I wanted to do with it and soon I'll put it online.  But I think it's thrown me for a loop with writing.  Or maybe I was entering that loop anyway and I needed the film to keep me creative.  Either way, I'm still in a weird place with my other scripts, not sure what to focus on.

I think I'm feeling "eh" about this post, too.  But I'll publish it.  (You can see I did.)  I'm just recording where I am.  At some point I hope my recorder tunes back towards a creative stream.  And maybe writing this will help me to.

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Friday, January 10, 2014

Two Festival Acceptances...

...and only one of them is for Little Pen Lost, which was accepted to the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest in Polson, MT and will screen on Sunday, January 26th at the 12:30pm screening.  I'm happy about any festival acceptance but I'm always a little extra excited when it's to a festival to which I have had absolutely no connection whatsoever, meaning I know they didn't feel any particular tug to include the film because they've screened another film of mine, or I'm a local, etc.

I'm actually not submitting Little Pen Lost to many more festivals, because of the money and time it involves.  I'd rather put my energy into my writing, or even possibly filming another short, than exhaust myself in pushing a film that was just a little exercise to reactivate my dormant filmmaking muscles.  I feel a little weird saying this as someone may take it as demeaning to the talent involved.  I have nothing but respect for my talented cast and crew -- thanks to them the film is getting in festivals.  But I do think that this piece serves better as a showcase for the actors than as a film itself.  It's really more of a filmed skit than a film.  I think it's cute and entertaining, otherwise I wouldn't send it anywhere at all.  I wouldn't plan to put it online if I didn't think it was good.  But I feel if I were to push it much more would be like dwelling on the past.  And that's why I'm more excited about the other festival acceptance...

...which is for my short (30 page) screenplay, Susan and the Company Picnic.  It is an official selection of the Houston Comedy Film Festival, which takes place on January 30th and 31st in Houston, TX.


The original script was a finalist in the 2011 Broad Humor Film Festival but I made changes since then and thought I might as well send it in to another screenplay competition.  I was really happy to have Susan be one of six nominated short screenplays (out of 44) and in a way it's more exciting for me because it points towards the future, making me think this screenplay is truly worthy of being filmed.  We're not in a place to do it yet, but it's nice to have something to make you look forward.

So thank you, Flathead Lake International Cinemafest and Houston Comedy Film Festival.  I'm honored that you selected my work (well, I mean "our work" when it comes to Little Pen Lost).


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Monday, September 30, 2013

Little Pen Wins Invitational Challenge

Little Pen Lost premiered at the Broad Humor Film Festival last Saturday, September 21st.   I was happy just to get a film done in time for the festival and happy that it was acknowledged in the world as a legitimate 5 minute film.

I feel I should apologize for saying that I didn't expect it to win an award.  (Doesn't everyone who wins an award say that?)  But I really wasn't thinking about it until I found myself scrolling down the awards list last week and at the very bottom there it was -- Little Pen Lost.

I know this doesn't make me special or a genius or anything, but it's nice to feel that something you did (along with many other talented people who deserve better than to be between parentheses) was recognized as good enough to win something.

Thank you, Broad Humor Film Festival, for the award, and for always inspiring me to do more.  Special thanks to Susan di Rende, the festival director, and Michelle Clay, who had to deal with our film getting to her at such a late hour.

And thank you again to all the people I mentioned in the post below, and also Lauren Duffy (who contributed greatly to two of the characters before production) and Jeremy Ward for doing such a perfect musical score.

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Filming Little Pen Lost


So we filmed Little Pen Lost a couple of weeks ago -- here's a photo.  I'm careful about the photos I put up as I don't like giving away too much of the film, even if it is just a silly four to five minute film.

I really not sure how well this film will turn out.  We had to film it in only a few hours and had the usual sound problems that accompany outdoor filming on practically no budget.  But my cast and crew were excellent and we had a lot of fun.  So thank you to Zele Avradopoulos, Alison Wachtler, Bill Millios, Julio Robles, Marc Vadeboncoeur, Stephen Radochia and Jeremy and Linnea Ward.

This is my first time filming anything in over five years.  So if anything this film serves in flexing my dormant filmmaker muscles.

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Sunday, July 14, 2013

June 23rd Screenplay Reading

From left to right, Alison Wachtler, Alyce Householter, myself, Stephen Radochia, Matt Rouillard, Zele Avradopoulos, Russ Gannon

A few weeks ago I held a table reading (ok, there really wasn't a table) for two of my short screenplays, Beat 'Em and Susan and the Company Picnic.  Unlike the reading I had for Jimmy's House of Hugs two years ago, I didn't really need feedback -- I had already gotten plenty.  Both Beat 'Em and Susan and the Company Picnic already were finalists in the Broad Humor Film Festival screenplay contest.  I had the reading just to finally hear the scripts and to be with actors again.

And what great actors to be with.  They all brought something special to the characters they read for.   I highly recommend them all.

I had questioned whether I should even do this reading.  Did I really need it?  Was it just to have something to post on Facebook (and this blog)?  Would it detract from my writing, which is something I feel I really need to focus on?  Because even just putting together a reading like this takes up my time and energy.  The week I was contacting people about doing it, I wasn't getting any writing done.

But I do think it was worth it.  It inspired me to write another short script.  And see that sun shining in on the top left of the photo -- the one that almost washes out Alison?  It's the perfect representation of the energy in the room -- just a lot of light beaming, bringing in good happy vibes.  Sometimes we need some good beaming and vibing and a little pat on the back.

So I'll keep this short, because now writing this blog post is keeping me from writing other stuff.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Spamments

OK, I know writing this post is rather futile, but in case this discourages anyone: I keep getting spam comments on my posts. I would love for them to stop. (I know -- ha.) But if I may be helpful to any spammers, you are wasting your time. Not only do I know buy any of what you're selling, I don't publish any of these comments, making your spam efforts completely wasted. (And I do recognize the latest attempts at making them seem personal, so don't bother with that, either.) So, please, stop cluttering my inbox with them. Real comments are still welcome, though.

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