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

Friday, October 26, 2007

Played

August, 2006 -- you know where...

Always looking for some kind of photo to represent my post, this was the best one I could find. It looks like I'm lost among the Las Vegas crowd.

I picked it, because, you see, I just got the biggest hosing I've ever gotten by anyone in the entertainment industry. What make this hosing on the larger side is that it was by someone with whom I worked before, who, I thought would never lie to me or leave me hanging in anyway.

Usually when I have similar stories, there's a long explanation to fully describe why it's so bad. This one is actually very simple. Almost three weeks ago, this person, a producer, offered me a role in his film (a paid role, too) that I accepted and thanked him for. He told me it would be filming one of three days last week and that he would get back to me with the exact schedule.

He never did. I wondered if something horrible happened in his life because I couldn't believe that he would have me hold my schedule, prepare for a role and then leave me hanging unless he had some really good excuse. Whatever happened, I assumed that filming must have been postponed.

It wasn't. I saw on his myspace pages that filming went on last week and that a certain horror star did the part that he had offered me.

Now, I still thought that this producer wasn't a bad guy -- but he did just do something crappy to me. So, on Monday, I sent him an email telling him I was hurt and angry that he never told me he didn't need me and that he went ahead and filmed with someone else without letting me know. (This was a short and contained email - not something scary emotional that would make someone afraid of me.) To be honest, I could have forgiven him for replacing me with a star -- if he told me about it right away. (It would have been a wee bit sh*tty to offer me a part and then take it away but I would have understood the reasons for it if this was someone who could sell the film.) What hurt was the blatant disrespect for me that he didn't feel like he had to tell me.

On top of everything, I truly believed that after sending him this email that he would call or email me to profusely apologize. I still believed that he was good and responsible enough to do that. It would have been a little too late, BUT, it would have been some saving grace for him.

OK, it's now been four full days since I sent the email. Even giving the benefit of the doubt that maybe he didn't get the email, you'd think that he would call and apologize to me anyway. After all, he must have noticed that, well, um, he didn't get back to me.

This was never an misunderstanding on my part. This producer sent me an email offering me the part and I called him to verify the information and accept the role. During the following week I sent him two follow up emails thanking him again for the role in this film. Finally, a week later, I left him a phone message because I had heard nothing from him and the filming dates were very close. He sent me one short email the following morning:

"My apologies. I will contact you soon."

But he didn't. If something had changed you would have thought he would say it right there and not keep me guessing. So, knowing him, and knowing that he simply would not screw me over, I kept my faith that I would hear from him and that I should keep preparing for the shoot.

What a dope I was. I now even think that he was trying to get the horror star for "my "role all along. He even told me when I called him that he had a few horror stars in this film and that he was trying to get this other woman for a part that would be written in for her. I actually thought to myself, hmmm, since my part was written for a woman in her 40s, that she would probably be better for it. Duh. She was. I was just the back up.

The stupid thing about it is how people make things worse for themselves by either lying or just simply failing to communicate. If he had asked me to be the back up I would have said yes (unless another paying job came through for sure, which was unlikely). Even if my suspicion isn't true, and things really did change in ways he hadn't expected, he could have made it all better by simply giving me a call.

I'm actually quite forgiving of people messing up. What I have a very hard time with, is people not taking responsibility, for disrespecting my time and effort, and for not being up front with me. What he did was cause me to not pursue other opportunities while also making me think I would have another $350 coming in this month. The money is the least of it, but still, he made me believe that I would be earning this check, which I really, really, really could have used. And heck, I was excited that I could tell my brother that I would be acting in a few scenes with an actor who was in the original Halloween.

That is why, as both an actor and a filmmaker, I am always up front with people about what my schedule is and what my intentions are. If I don't know something, I'm clear about it. If I can't promise something, I don't. And, if something changes along the way, my first priority is to let them know. I suppose I'm like this to a fault, because I probably have lost a few opportunities to people who promised everything. And often the manipulators (like I suppose this producer was, even though I admit I still have a hard time thinking of him that way) are the ones who cash in on the opportunities I have lost.

So, I'm not sure how my honesty is working for me so far. But I'll stick with it.


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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Old Man Dogs trailer


"Old Man Dogs", a film I acted in 11 years ago (released in 1997 by Back Lot Films) will be released on a 10th anniversary DVD very soon.

Working on this film was a very special experience for me and I've always meant to write a post on it, but I've been waiting for the DVD to come out.

I'll write more on it at another time. For now, check out the trailer!

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Friday, October 05, 2007

Distracted and Overwhelmed

My fried head
(I took this of myself in Springfield, IL with my manual
35mm camera. Eh, it was the best I could do.)

Today is my first day off in a while. I brought the car in for some work, went swimming and then have been doing laundry and such. I keep meaning to use these days to work on my films. I'm writing a script and working on a trailer that features clips of all my shorts. Plus I'm finally going to be laying a new voice over in for Happy at Home.

So my days off are meant for me to work on all those things. But here it is after 4, and I'm writing another post instead of writing my script. It doesn't help that I spent some time on Facebook. I hadn't heard of Facebook until very recently and now I find it's yet another thing to distract me. Don't get me wrong, though, I've already connected with a few people I haven't seen in years, which is great. It's just that I have my regular website to update (never mind that I still need to create a new one altogether), two myspace pages, a Linked In profile, Beanywood (though I'm avoiding that one right now -- it causes my computer to freeze), acting profiles, my You Tube page, my film pages and accounts on Withoutabox, my IMDB pages, this here blog, and now I find out that Facebook is the latest and greatest networking trend.

I spend time on these certainly to keep up with friends but most of it is for networking. I'm building my film making career and in order to do well I must make people interested in my films, and that requires letting people know what I'm up to. Of course there must be some balance because I do need to actually work on my films.

The internet is a necessity in networking but I wonder if it's so over saturated now that while you're a fool not to use it, it's not as effective as it once was. They say Dane Cook got popular over effectively using Myspace but that was at a time when not everyone was doing it. Now everyone is marketing themselves on it that I wonder how much time people spend paying attention to what others are doing when they're trying to get the word out over what they're doing. I can't pay attention to every bulletin in there. So I wonder how many people are really checking out mine.

There's got to be some new way to market. You still need to use the internet because if people hear about you they want to be able to find you on the web. I'm just not so sure it's now the best way to get people to hear about you -- other than when it's through actual word of mouth. We'll pay more attention to what our close friends tell us than all our myspace friends.

I'm just thinking out loud here.

Anyway, I'm starting to sense the futility in all this effort I put into networking online. The thought of keeping up with it all just overwhelms me. And it does distract me.

The wonderful thing about the internet is that it brings mass marketing to the regular people like me. But I wonder if I was really meant for these times. The internet makes everything move so fast. It keeps you in touch with people you might not have kept in touch with otherwise but then it gets to a point where you can't keep up. I find myself behind in emailing people back. Which brings up feelings of guilt and all that.

I think this affects everyone in such a way to a certain degree. I think it affects me more so. My process comes so much from within and when I have so many external sources signaling it takes me away from myself. I was thinking how I have to give myself some credit for getting anything done. When I was a kid, being alone in my room was never a punishment. It was where I would go into my fantasy world and create my stories. As I got older I found it harder and harder to complete anything, and I think this was due to my not being able to retreat as much as I really needed to.

I want to make people happy. But I find that in order to really create I have to shut the door to my room. Even after I do that it can take me hours, days even, for my mind to settle down after being in the world, being more social than I'm able to be. (I tell people that I really trained myself to be social when I was growing up. I very shy and was not a natural at making friends. But I noticed that I was different and saw that I had to improve myself.) Not that I don't love being with friends and family -- I really do. But if I'm to succeed at doing what I love, I have to find more time to myself.

I got better grades in college than I did in high school. I just realized last night that it was due to being away at college, in my own dorm room. (I did better the years I had my own room.) I didn't have many friends at all and I couldn't get into the whole drinking scene. The one thing I did that was social was go to the on campus chapel every Sunday for Mass. (The students there were more down to earth.) But other than that I locked myself in my room and studied.

I have a lot I want to get done this year before I turn forty. I'm putting myself on lock down.

If I'm ever slow to get back to you, please understand. My friends and family are on my mind very much, more than you may ever know. Even if you don't hear from me as much as you'd like, I'm sending you much happiness and will be in touch soon enough. I love my peeps very much.

OK, I have to go to my room now.

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  • Little Pen Post
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  • Sally's Dream House
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  • Like His Father
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  • Jeremy Ward's blog
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  • Back Lot Films, Inc.
  • Cara Downs' Blog
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