Projector bulb update

I could have ordered this projector bulb from a number of places on line, but I thought I’d be a mensch and support a local business. So I called up the home theater specialist on the corner and asked them if they had a bulb in stock.

They did not, but said they could get one for me in a week.

That was eight weeks ago. During that time, I have actually gone to New York and shot a feature film and returned.

Now then. Based on my conversations with the knowledgeable, friendly guy on the other end of the line, I formed a mental picture of him in my head. I imagined him, for some reason, as an aging Venice Beach hippie type, I don’t know why, but I imagined him with long, thin blond hair in a pony tail and a perpetual three-day shadow. I imagined him coming to work in a muscle t with a Hawaiian shirt over it, and wearing yellow-tinted sunglasses indoors, and always chewing on a toothpick, and with a gold stud in one of his ears.

Again, I say, I don’t know why I imagined this, at all the other high-end video stores they have a bunch of smooth, well-groomed, oily young men who have no compunctions about selling you a $200 connection cord. Because this place looks more nuts-and-bolts from the outside, I guess, I imagined it was more like an auto-body shop or something.

Today, I was in the neighborhood so I thought I’d go in and say hi and ask what the hell happened to my projector bulb. The guy in my imagination was, of course, nowhere to be seen. Instead, there was a guy who bore and uncomfortable similarity to Nice Guy Eddie from Reservoir Dogs. The guy was a little chunky and had short, wavy hair and even walked like Nice Guy Eddie. He also did a little huffing thing when he walked. He didn’t seem that out of shape, but the huffing thing struck me as odd.

Anyway, no bulb. Nice Guy Eddie has to order from a head office, and the head office doesn’t return his phone calls, and anyway now he says it “normally” takes six to eight weeks for a part like that.

Normally, at this point I get angry and say something like “Then why did you tell me it was going to take a week?” But for some reason, because the guy looked like Nice Guy Eddie and I am still saddened by the passing of Chris Penn, I decided “Hey, I live in California now, I’m not supposed to get upset about that kind of thing.”

So there’s an ever-growing stack of DVDs on my “DVDs to watch” pile, and my apologies to my dozen or so readers.

In the meantime, I’ve just discovered that I can post drawings from my own collection on this here blog, so I thought I might start doing that. Here’s one now.  It’s called “The Two Cinemas”

click for readable view
hit counter html code


16 Responses to “Projector bulb update”
  1. eronanke says:

    Hate to say I Told You So on the ebay/online buying thing….

    So I won’t.

    I hope all becomes well soon.
    And I was really missing your updates, you know!

    • Todd says:

      Hate to say I Told You So on the ebay/online buying thing….

      Yeah, but when you mentioned that I had just read a whole big thing about how electronics dealers on the internet are always trying to rip people off. These guys I’m dealing with might be silly or incompetent, but I don’t think they’re dishonest. They don’t have my money yet, after all.

      • eronanke says:

        Ok, ok. 🙂
        You’re a model of patience.
        Do us a favor, though, and keep posting- we don’t mind hearing about things other than movies!

  2. ayrn says:

    I want my Total Recall Television Walls. Aren’t we long overdue for those? Then folks won’t be needing projector bulbs or costly cords anymore. The worst that’ll happen is sticking a fist through the wall when Paris Hilton comes on…or am I the only one that reacts that way?

  3. craigjclark says:

    The thing that always bothers me about that kind of arrangement is the fact that you know the people watching Pictures of People Talking will still get to hear the Exploding Buildings next door.

  4. monica_black says:

    but I thought I’d be a mensch and support a local business.
    And that is why I rarely ever shop at local businesses.

    Would “Pictures of People Talking” be a silent film?

    • Todd says:

      You mean because you don’t want to be a mensch or you don’t want to run the risk of bumping into me?

      “Pictures of people talking” was Hitchcock’s description of 95 percent of filmmaking. He thought it was a waste and a betrayal of the medium. Strangely enough, that’s changing these days. Most movies today are not pictures of people talking. And yet we look back fondly on a movie like, say, The Apartment and sigh in despair in anticipation of the next movie about car chases and exploding buildings.

      • monica_black says:

        You mean because you don’t want to be a mensch or you don’t want to run the risk of bumping into me?

        Considering you’re not in Iowa, it’s the fact that I don’t want to be a mensch. Also, I can never find what I want.

        Ah, how the movie industry has changed.

  5. urbaniak says:

    Nothing to be done.

  6. ghostgecko says:

    I’m gonna wait for Exploding Buildings 2: Now With CGI Dinosaurs.

    Speaking of art . . . I was thinking about that Caligari idea you had. Were you just going to go with CGI sets, or were you going to manipulate the actors’ images, too? And did you have any ideas as to what the look was going to be for each POV? Sorry if I’m being nosy, I just really grooved on that idea.

    • Todd says:

      The most important aspect of the idea, the one that appeals to me most, is to shoot the actors in front of green screens, then drop in backgrounds afterward. They wouldn’t even need to be cg backgrounds, they could be hand-painted backgrounds like in the original, with the style veering from photo-realist to expressionist to abstract as the psychosis of the character dictates.

      The main idea I had about differentiating between POVs was to give each POV a color tint, blue, red or yellow depending on the character. And not to make a point of it, but let the audience figure it out as the movie goes on.

      The nice thing about shooting like this is that I could probably shoot the actors on my own dime, then take the footage to investors, explain the concept, and have the backgrounds produced with whatever budget I could get.

      Unfortuneately, I’ve since learned that Tim Burton (who else) is currently developing a remake of Dr. Caligari. I have no idea what his plans are, how far along it is or whether the original is in the public domain (I think it is), but I need to concentrate on some other projects first before I figure out what to do with this.

      • ghostgecko says:

        Damn Tim Burton, then. I used to like his stuff quite a bit but what is up with the constant retread of ideas and other movies – movies that didn’t even require a remake? IMHO a movie shouldn’t be remade unless something new and interesting can be put into the concept, and “adding lots of CGI and Johnny Depp” does not count. Bleah. Anyways, whatever he’s doing is quite likely not to be very similar to what he’s thinking – I wouldn’t worry too much about that.

        That’s a good idea about getting the actor footage done first. It might cost quite a bit less than you think if you’re using flat art as the background, that might even be something you could do on your own dime if you find a artist who’s starving enough and skilled with something like Photoshop, where it would be pretty easy to manipulate the background images quickly.

        Do you have any particular artistic styles you’re thinking of? Francis Bacon or the Max Ernst collages would be an interesting start, and I saw an installation a few years back that faded photographs in and out of a huge interlinked collage. For example, a section with a woman’s flowing hair would dissolve thru a series of slides with tree roots, a satellite map of river, a picture of blood vessels, etc, very subtle but visually related. A bit hard to describe (obviously) but something like that would look absolutely amazing as a background like you’re talking about. Different parts of the bg image could change with the dialog and mood during a scene, give it extra/layered meanings, and so on.

        Anyways, if you’re not that into I’ll leave off – I just got super excited with the possibilities the idea had, esp. having liked Caligari for years.

        • Todd says:

          if you find a artist who’s starving enough and skilled with something like Photoshop

          Which is why I’m teaching myself Photoshop.

          • ghostgecko says:

            Photoshop is a great program with an extraordinarily stupid interface. Learning it is mostly a matter of sitting down with the damn thing and playing around. I took courses in it, but I’m still not exactly sure how curves are supposed to work. Ah well.

  7. toliverchap says:

    First you make the poster . . .

    then you make the picture. I like the drawings. There are after all only so many stories to tell and the people talking (I like to call them boring movies) and buildings (planes, trains, automobiles, boats, ships, and snakes on planes) exploding genres are pretty seminal to cinema.