i must confess that working in the film business affords you incredible experiences and a vast diversity in your day to day interactions. one minute you are having drinks at the chateau with ryan gosling, the next a coffee with james deen. i've been able to hang out with larger than life figures like amarillo slim, the outlaw gambler as well as athletes, professors, painters, cops, you name it. and, of course, two artists in particular, bret ellis and paul schrader, whom i respect greatly and for good reason.
but honestly, working in hollywood is also a pride swallowing affair. you get dressed down by belligerent, erratic agents, blown off by studio execs who are only interested in their next franchise, suffer endless delays on projects you are emotionally invested in, withstand constant pressure to capitulate to crass commercialism, observe rampant nepotism and are subjected to the prevailing groupthink that can blunt really interesting voices. if you simply like compelling, artful stories and are motivated by the constituent parts of filmmaking -- the photography, the production design, the wardrobe, the sonic landscape -- then hollywood can be rough sledding. you don't always find fellow travelers. what you are sure to find is a whole obstructionist system. no point in dwelling on it, but hollywood shouldn't have a bad rap, it often does, and the reasons are often totally valid. but it need not.
i mean, we love film. it shouldn't be that hard. and i think you do too. so.
this is why kickstarter, e.g. YOU, have been such a wonderful, inspiring, important, revelatory process for us. not only are the financial resources crucial, but the community that has been established, the feedback we've gotten, the messages, the comments, the discourse on potential cast -- this is wildly useful stuff. paul, bret and myself, the entire canyons team, we all pay attention. and honestly, we would rather engage with and be responsive to people like yourselves who have expressed an interest in what is going on, then try to persuade and coax the machine to support what we are trying to accomplish. this changes the equation in the best possible way. in the past when i have had to attend an nrg recruited screening for a film i've produced and you listen to the feedback as mediated by the studio, you are wary and distrustful. it's like being forced to go to a dentist who tells you that you need a root canal when you feel no pain. this feedback is just the opposite. it's welcomed. you feel it comes in a straightforward way from people who care and have an informed opinion.
so, on behalf of paul and bret, we want to extend our deepest gratitude to all who backed us. phase one has been enormously successful. over 1000 backers -- awesome. we are now in the midst of active pre production and will be announcing all the casting decisions shortly. we want to keep everyone up to date and please feel free to check facebook for continuing updates as well as an imminent tumblr page. we are operating in a new media way in a spirit of transparency. we couldn't have asked for more considered, engaged support and for that we are appreciative.
we commence filming july 9th. onward!