Plan 9 from Seattle

As some of you know, and many undoubtedly do not, I was in my first play ever last March, a stage version of the Ed Wood epic Plan 9 from Outer Space.  Well, I went to the museum in Seattle and discovered an actual UFO from the actual movie.

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And I saw lots of musical instruments, and a few ukuleles amongst them even.

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And a vagina I mean facehugger

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And Mr. Stabby from Buffy!

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Someone who moves like you

Television has a huge impact on how we view the world and, perhaps more interestingly, how we view ourselves.  When Joe Biden said that Will & Grace had done more for gay marriage than anything else, it probably seemed like hyperbole, but the normalization of the Other often comes first in the form of simple inclusion.

Now, I want you to go read this essay about a woman who is autistic and discovered Abed Nadir.

And stories are a scary and messy business, full of magic and demons, taunting possibilities and rules-that-aren’t, things we can’t have and altogether far too many opportunities for a sad little girl’s heart to be ripped out of her chest, and Julia kept watching, every week. And you must understand that asking Julia to pick one Abed moment is like asking Abed to pick one reference.

You must understand that one story is infinitely bigger than zero, and it may still be very small and nowhere near enough, but it’s something.

If you don’t know who Abed is… your life is sad and you need to fix that by watching Community.

 

Dear White People: Watch This Trailer

Can we get a movie with, you know, characters in ‘em instead of stereotypes wrapped up in Christian dogma?

I realize that there is a huge fundraising effort going on here for the SSA, and I strongly encourage you to participate, but I would like to bring your attention to something else.  I am, admittedly, quite biased in favor of helping people get good scripts turned into films — because it’s good to help the arts and, more selfishly, in the hopes that this will somehow lead to someone making *my* atheist script into a film.  There are major minority representation issues in film and independent productions are often the only way to combat this.

It has been a long time since I’ve seen a trailer that managed to grab me as much as this one did, the actors are superb, and there are a couple very funny jokes.  Impressive for a film that hasn’t even been shot yet.

Remember when Black movies didn’t neccesarily star a dude in a fat suit and a wig? Or have major plot twists timed to Gospel numbers for no apparent reason? No? Damn…

Well believe it or not there was a time when “Black Art-House” was a thing. When movies like Do The Right ThingHollywood Shuffle, and Boyz In Da Hood were breaking box office records as well as making us laugh, cry, and think in ways movies hadn’t before.

The humble producers of DEAR WHITE PEOPLE, a satire about being a black face in a white place, long to bring those days back. But we can’t do it without you!

They also have a very funny tumblr, twitter feed, and facebook page.

And, if you’ll allow a brief indulgence, can we talk about how pretty this is?  This is a trailer shot specifically to be a trailer, which is to say, this is not cut from a larger movie — they shot this, probably on a very low budget, to sell the idea of the film.  With that low budget they’ve gotten a talented cast who all manage to come across as complex, even in a short trailer, and got a cinematographer, editor, and production designer who made almost every shot look professional.  Film is tricky when it comes to representation, it relies on stereotypes and visual shortcuts to tell stories efficiently and effectively.  It’s a shallow medium.  So can I just say that I now have a crush on basically every single cast-member who has a line in the trailer?

Plan 9 Live and Undead

I have mentioned this before on my blog, but I am going to talk about it again.  Because I’m damn excited, so you can deal with it.

Last night we had our first tech rehearsal for Plan 9, the live theatre production.  Wednesday, as in tomorrow yikes, is our preview show for special donors.  Then, the show runs Thursday through Saturday night.  If you’re in or near Columbia, SC, you should make an effort to attend.  It is insanely weird, funny, and fun.

This will be my acting debut.  The stage is not really my thing, I am definitely more of a film and TV person.  It’s so strange to me, because in multicam TV you’d get the script at the end of the week and then perform it live in front of a studio audience later that week.  Rehearsing for months is crazy!

So, I’ve been rehearsing for months, people had better come watch me.  I don’t ever do anything for months.  And I’m the makeup artist.  That’s a lot of work, I tell you, someone had better appreciate it.  Have some photos.

We are insane... ly awesome

Someday, I will be Endora, just you wait

Fett’s Vette and Sweden

Two seemingly unrelated things, right?  WRONG!

I am going to Sweden on Monday AND I’ve just recorded Fett’s Vette on the Ukulele.  I know.  It’s a plethora of goodness.  And it’s Tom Keane’s new favorite thing on the internet — if that doesn’t recommend it, I don’t know what could.

I want your money: Plan 9 from Outer Space ON STAGE!

In the land of insanely cool things that are happening that I am a part of, there is going to be a live stage production of Plan 9 from Outer Space, one of the best worst movies ever made.  AND YOU CAN HELP!

They are trying to raise funds for it on Kickstarter.  They’ve raised about $1500 so far, but would like to get double that to be able to make it as awesome as possible and pay the people who are participating.

Even more amusing is the fact that I’m going to be in it.  Which is great, considering my theatre experience in its entirety is “I’ve seen some plays”.  See my scene at 28:10!

If you can’t afford to donate, you can upvote the link on Reddit to help other people who might donate find it.  Although, why can’t you donate five dollars, man!

Harry Potter + Google = Love

As the resident Google fan, I am happy to report that there is a whole lot of interesting Google news this week.  It seems that Google doesn’t do news weeks in half measures.

First up is political news — both Google and Facebook have spent more money during this quarter on lobbyists than they have ever spent previously.  Both companies have had some run ins with the FTC and are now throwing money at theproblem.  Google is spending way more than Facebook, though — $2.06 million in the second quarter to Facebook’s $320,000.  For the first time ever, they even spent more than Microsoft!

To further their attempts to take over the internet, Google is also planning on offering a low-interest credit card to advertisers on AdWords.  It’ll be a MasterCard without an annual fee and a 8.99% APR, but can only be used for ads.  The idea is that small businesses can get some credit for big ad campaigns at holidays without having to have funds for it on hand.

Google is also offering a new feature in Gmail that allows you to use more than one line at a time.  The multi-call feature lets you put people on hold and pick up another call at the same time — a normal call waiting function that’s relatively new to the online phone services.  They actually are going to offer the full call waiting function, meaning that you get notified of incoming calls and can choose to answer and put people on hold and all that jazz, but you can only use two outgoing calls at a time.

Google+ continues to grow, gathering a fairly young demographic.  It’s currently the 42nd most visited social networking site in the US.  Google+ has grown by 821% since the week of July 2nd and has a much larger percentage of women than originally estimated, meaning that it’s probably not just engineers and internet nerds who are jumping on the bandwagon.  In an attempt to compete with Apple and Facebook, Google+ will be offering games and taking a much lower percentage of revenue from games — approximately 5% compared to the normal 30%.  Google also will host the games on their own servers, theoretically making them faster and less buggy.

Google will be shutting down Google Labs, a feature that allowed users to test run experimental features on different websites.  For example, the popular beer goggles that requires you to do simple math to access your email late at night on the weekends, to try to prevent drunk emailing.  They say that many of the features in Calendar or Gmail won’t be going away, but it’s unclear what exactly is going and staying.  The good news is that just because there will be no more labs doesn’t mean that the 20% rule is going away — Google employees are supposed to spend 20% of their work time on personal pet projects out of which many of the labs have emerged.

And finally, of personal interest to me, is Google’s announcement that it is teaming up with JK Rowlings Pottermore to make the Harry Potter books available through Google eBooks.  Google will also get exclusive payment rights for all Pottermore.com purchases, edging out PayPal and Amazon Payments.  With Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 set to be the first of the series to reach 1 billion, it seems that despite the fact that Harry Potter is about to be 15 years old, it’s still a major draw.

Originally Posted at SocialAxcess.com