the awesome/terrifying freedom

out here, somewhere, figuring it all out.

looks good..

what i especially love about this new trailer for harry potter, is that all signs of cutseyness have been totally eviscerated. i like the 'adult' covers for the hp books - my only problem with it is that they, of course, just had to use trajan.. because..

which reminds me.. i did finish reading the first book (yes, i'm taking my dear sweet time, seeing as i probably have three years to catch up.. and i'd like to time out my finishing of the 6th book just before the release of the last one..) and i did enjoy it quite a lot. it really solidified just how terrible and unimaginative that first film was. i can't say it enough. chris columbus has no imagination or vision, and that film was a perfect example of what happens when someone with no talent tries to tell a story written by someone who does: mediocrity. i really think nothing irritates me more than lost potential. it could have been so good. at least they seem to be making up for it now.

it's hideous!

yikes.. yeah, it's not what i thought.. will continue to mess with the colors during the week..

new music:

been listening to more stuff by sia, which i like. also i really like the other stuff by arcade fire, sort of modest mouse meets coldplay.


i've been working on a giant new website for myself, one that, like, shows me off and stuff. it's pretty extensive, about 50 pages in total! i hope to get it up and running in the next couple weeks. in anticipation, i decided to try and redesign my blog.. still playing with the colors. they look good on my laptop, but i always discover that once i get to work, what once seemed understated comes out as garish on my work monitor.. eh. how does it look?

when september ends

have you seen the new greenday video? great performances by evan rachel wood and jamie bell - we all had our fingers crossed after billy elliott that he'd grow up hot. and yay greenday. who'd guess the group made famous singing about dookie and jerking off would ever get so unabashaedly political?

did you notice.. (six feet spoiler alert)

during the final sequence on the six feet finale.. that anthony turns out to be gay and has an asian boyfriend with him at claire's wedding? awesome.

despite the fact that the family obits are all posted on the official site, i still believe that this sequence was entirely claire's fantasy. ruth tells her 'i hope you are filled with hope..' claire drives off, and as the flash forwards roll, we continue to cut back to shots of claire driving - and as she drives faster, the clips move further and further into the future. claire imagines hopeful futures for all of them. only keith meets true tragedy, but still after he's much older and the kids have grown up.. and it allows david to be greeted by keith just before he dies. and claire hopefully imagines that she will reunite with ted at her mother's funeral..

god it's weird to think that, if all goes well, i probably won't die until about 2060-something. 2060! can you fucking imagine what the world will be in 2060!? imagine the difference between 1875 and 1960. now apply that to the current exponential advancement in technology. holy crap. holy fucking crap.

confutatis maledictis

short film #2 in the requiem project: what lies below is now complete.

the basement cryers

six feet under has been the new 'angels in america,' the new gold standard, a pinnacle in the art of television production (and thank you hbo for elevating television to a true art form). i've rarely been so moved. it ended with enough hope to offset the past two years of turmoil. and the final sequence was perfect - not a premonition, or a certainty, but a hope. or maybe it was a certainty - either way, extremely hopeful. and the scene between ruth and claire was the centerpiece of the finale, so stunningly executed. life is so short. before i know it, i'll feel my body start to fall apart, amazed that despite still feeling 24, my body can't keep up..

it's got me tempted to drive away myself. go somewhere else, do something else. we are filled with such potential, so much possiblity for greatness. i feel it in me sometimes and i doubt myself so much that i can feel my own gifts being squashed. why do i not choose to be great more often? because that's all it really is, isn't it? you just have to decide 'this will be the best thing i've ever done,' and if you can really truly make that decision, then that's what it'll be.

i want to create work that can stand with six feet under. i want to write/direct/make things that probe as deeply, that explore what it means to be human, that don't sugar coat, to craft something with exquisite detail, to remember my sense of humor, to find myself, who i really am, what i was meant to do, and to be the best version of myself that i can be.

i went to a wedding this weekend for my old friend O'rya, who i haven't seen in probably nine or ten years. and it was a reunion with many other junior high friends - 5 of the original 9 'basement cryers,' as we jokingly refer to ourselves.

8th or 9th grade.. i'm fuzzy now.. it happened on the way home from a trip to 'elitch's' (the big denver amusement park) at about 10pm in the back of (was it o'rya's family's car?).. i don't remember how the conversation became so dark, but during the trip we started talking about our lives, and one by one we confessed our secrets, our dramas, our problems - it was total breakfast club. after that night, we were changed. we walked through the halls with all of each other's secrets, and we'd all shared equally, so we knew we were safe. we would meet in jennifer hausle's basement several times after, and confess, cry, let go. yeah, it was pretty weird. i remember having anxiety that i wouldn't be able to cry when it came to be my turn, which is kind of fucked up, but what came out of it were the closest friends of my life.

i'd nearly forgotten about it until o'rya brought it up at the wedding. it was so deeply personal that we laugh about it now, like we were emotionally unstable children (which we were), but at the time, it was the most important thing in my life. i'm not sure who i might be if i hadn't had that outlet. have you seen 'heavenly creatures?' those two girls, that obsessively creative bond they shared - that was it. we didn't commit murder, though. we stopped at basement crying.

really, anyone i've ever cried with is pretty much part of this group. once you cry with someone, once you really share where you are, what you fear, and what you want - the bond with that person is never the same.

and the wedding was stunning. it felt like a merchant ivory movie.

well, at least until we were at the end of a dock at 3am while the bride's mother held the wedding dress so the bride could jump naked off the dock with the rest of the wedding party.


what is a wedding about really? is a wedding about the people getting married, or is it about the people around you, who you can bring together? i want to get married, absolutely. maybe not legally, yet, and certainly not extravagantly, but hell, when i meet that guy, you can bet i'm gonna want a big party, and i want all the friends, the basement cryers, everyone, to be there for it.


dudes, 'bareback mountain' looks SOO good. i mean 'brokeback mountain.'

cold wind

i'm really amazed at the music they find for six feet under. i just downloaded the song from the end of last week's episode, 'cold wind' by the arcade fire.

In the middle of the summer
im not sleeping
cold wind blowing
in the middle of the night they
try to find me but im still driving
if you're going to San Francisco
lay some flowers on the grave stone
theres music on the station and im just listening to cold wind whistling

ah, a little research reveals that the song was exclusively written and recorded for 'six feet under.' well, it worked brilliantly in the show, and it's a great song on its own as well.

holy crap. nate's smiling. that, more than his death, truly signifies the end. (sorry for the "spoiler," but it's everywhere now.)

i've got my box of kleenex ready for sunday night.

adrienne was in town this week, which was fantastic. i haven't seen her in 9 years, since we filmed the 'af1' movie you can see if you click the link to the right.

last night we shot a companion piece to go with 'where there is no path.' the footage looks great, and i can't wait to get it edited and finished. this one is set to 'confutatis' from mozart's requiem. my new goal is to make a funny short film set to each movement of the requiem. all the pieces will fit together in unexpected ways, and they will all be about people obsessed with something tiny or trivial..

the one hundred and nineteenth friend

who the hell are you? and why did you drop me on friendster? since i can't figure out who you were, you must not have meant very much to me in the first place, but still - who the hell are you?


it's on at 2am on fridays on mtv2. if you've got dvr, record it! or if you're up like i am, watch it!

it's the show that 'tv funhouse' on comedy central several years ago wanted to be - so clever, and wickedly biting, mostly from it's use of actual kids in a show that is so not for kids.

one of my favorite segments has a kid reporter in a trench coat with a microphone, 'on the beat.' the theme song? "kids on the beat, kids on the street, BEAT KIDS! BEAT KIDS," complete with a two fisted logo that has the words 'beat kids' tattooed on the knuckles.

each week, a new 'beat kid' goes to interview adults at some local spot. this week it was the horse race track. our plucky tot reporter says to an old man spectator,

kid:i can do an impression of you!
old man: really? i don't think so! i'm a lot older than you!
kid: no really i can.
old man: ok then, show me your impression of me.
kid: gamble gamble gamble die.

it will then cut to a sweet animation voiced by a little girl who would like to turn into a pony and ride on the back of a unicorn, and land on the rings of saturn. the animation continues on, morphing to illustrate her fantasy with no hint of irony. finally the screen bursts into sparkles when she says 'i like sparkles and porn.'

then we'll get a parody of the segments on sesame street where kids will provide voice-over for stock footage of various factories. at money press at the mint:

kid: this is the machine that taunts you for being poor.
(footage of stack of bills)
kid: that's what mommy degrades herself for!


wow, that was sure an unexpected twist. a perfectly modulated scene, building with dangerous quiet intensity to it's horrifying climax.. this was a tough episode - the setup for the finale. still brilliant, but clearly a bridge. all the stuff with nate was fantastic - and it's really great to see the characters get deeply philosophical again. when brenda and billy talk about how as they get older there are fewer people around them, and fewer people who 'get them,' because they become so honed by experience that fewer people can relate or understand. this episode also found a way to get political in ways that tie into the storyline, and have been developing logically - the opening death was one of the most harrowing. also, we learn that maggie actually does have a personality. that actress must have been so excited to actually get to drive the scene for once. can't wait to see what the final 75 minutes, written by alan ball, will hold.

inside buzz

my friend inside the industry has seen the director's cut of 'rent.'

..and apparently it works, stating that many parts of the show that didn't work, actually work quite well here, like 'santa fe,' an insufferable song.

yes, she said, it's glossy in that christopher columbus way, but it's also grittier than you'd expect from him, in some ways, his glossiness works with the show's idealism..

i remain skeptical, but at least the music will be good - if they didn't mess that up, it should be ok, right?

another one

been designing up a storm this summer..

goodbye barbara bel geddes

she was bonnie hunt before bonnie hunt was bonnie hunt. she co-starred in hitchcock's most mature and emotionally complicated film, vertigo, and she starred in one of the few 'alfred hitchcock presents' that hitch directed himself - the one with the woman who kills her husband with a frozen leg of lamb, and then serves it to the detectives investigating the case. she was on 'dallas' too, but i was never very interested in that.

saccharine and glib

ralph fiennes on

"I think probably the first two films were a little too saccharine and glib, even for Harry Potter fans."

thank you for being honest! saccharine. such a great word.

"Alfonso Cuaron lifted the whole filmmaking onto another level, and I think that Mike Newell is going to make a really strong film."

bodes well: mike newell made 'donnie brasco,' and the 4th film has also just been slapped with a pg-13!

bodes not so well: mike newell made 'mona lisa smile.'

notes with max from junior high.

yeah, i was a smart ass, even then.

the film we ended up making, or attempting to make, was 'the pyramid of pyra.' it probably could be entered in the experimental catergory, if we ever finished it. it bears a lot in common with the finer works of ed wood. stationary camera, one master wide shot, with no editing for closeups. it was about an adopted brother and sister who find a magical glass pyramid in their garage which transports them to the mythical world of pyra, ruled by the tyrant witch, vevelva, who must recover the pyramid from the kids in order to rule the universe.

it just might be the greatest story ever told.

google fucking earth

do you know how fucking cool this thing is?

if you're on a pc, go now and download it.

it smoothly navigates you between any two points on the planet, usually zooming you into images with high enough resolution to see your parent's car in the driveway. it also comtains data on buildings, terrain, and roads. here is my brownstone in brooklyn, as shown by google earth:

and this is pulled back a little further.. so you can really see where i am in relation to the rest of the city.

i suppose if you wanted to stalk me, you could come right up to my doorstep now, though really i'm just saving you the time it would take to type my name into zabasearch.

check out this example of the landscape data - i tried my best to place the google earth camera in the same spot that i took this picture:

and here's approximately the same location in google earth:

on the hbo website, in the fictional six feet under obituaries, it lists fisher and sons at 2302 w. 25th street, los angeles. i put in in google earth, and lo and behold:

another one

here's a poster for blood brothers i did - my attempt to get past the show's ultra cheesiness

you are so fucking brilliant, why are you not a bigger star?

sure sure, you've been in 83 movies and 72 tv spots, but still. you should be a household name.

did you know that joanna was the naked snake girl in 'blade runner'?

and she was dolores in 'who framed roger rabbit'

i watched both these movies a million times as a kid and didn't connect her to six feet under until the 3rd season.


this show has been a gift. it makes me want to work in television, it makes me want to try and make stuff like this continue to happen. it makes me want to write more, act more, do more.

as soon as i stop crying. god i'm such a pansy.

silence! final version

it's not actually the final version - i guess the 'lotion in the basket' line was 'too obscure,' so the real poster says 'the unauthorized parody of 'silence of the lambs.' c'mon! it's the fringe! it really should say 'it can smell your cunt!'

get your tickets - it's selling out!

everyone has aids

check out the brand new coke commercial!

oh. i mean, check out the expanded 'rent' trailer.

nice poster, though.

oh maggie

i've tried my darndest not to include any spoilers in this little diatribe..

you make me sick, you spineless, weak,'no nate, this is wr..,' slyly manipulative, all you can do is call people from cars while crying, lucky enough to be the focus of nate's destructive behavioral pattern of idolizing and idealizing anyone outside of the relationship, woman. but you don't offer anything other than being not brenda. brenda has charisma. you have none. and he wanted you for that, for being a blank slate to thrust himself into.

speaking of nate, he's no better. how did this show evolve from being so about nate's perspective, to being so far outside of it? he was the voice of the show, he entered a strange world and he was our guide through it, through brenda's crazy family, through his own crazy family, and we were with him all the way. and when we thought he might die at the end of the second season, it was harrowing. but for the past three years, the perspective has slowly shifted to david. he's now the one we relate to, who feels and thinks and speaks for the audience. brenda's been there too a bit - recognizing and calling out the insanity rather than participating in it.

and yet, feeling so alienated from nate makes last week's episode hit even harder. so much left undone. so much potential unmet.

the show deals so well with the messiness of death. my favorite opening death this year is the woman who went to all her friends and finally said all the things she'd wanted to say, that she'd kept inside for years, and then just when she'd learned to find herself, bam, dead. that three minute segment summed up the entire series. brilliant, brilliant, brilliant.

who are you now, zach?

zach is out of the 'love in action' camp. his message is ambiguous.

"Homosexuality is still a factor in my life--- it's not who I am, it never has been. Those of you who really know me, know that homosexuality was always there but it didn't run my life, and it will not now."

does this mean he's learned to 'act' straight - which the rules of the camp would certainly beat into you.. or does this mean he's emerged another 'success' story for the LIA organization?

if it's the latter.. it's terrifying. it's like a gay version of the sally jesse raphael 'send my kid to boot camp' episodes where slutty halter-top wearing teens re-emerge wearing pastel sweaters and carrying teddy bears.

fix you

that's my name in the coldplay language

i was 12 years old when the joshua tree came out, and hearing 'where the streets have no name' and 'with or without you' cracked me open. i thought it was the greatest music ever written.

i've been listening to coldplay's 'fix you' over and over. it gives me that same feeling. will they be around as long as u2? is it possible that x&y will be some 12 year old kid's joshua tree?

just finished this design for the upcoming fringe musical 'bronx express'

my earlier trip to the transit museum was for this project..

closing the door

i had a good hard cry afterwards.

will there ever be a show like this again?

at least there are 3 more episodes...

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  • 5: the man of genius

  • 4: blunders & absurdities

  • 3: conservative after dinner

  • 2: what lies below

  • 1: where there is no path

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