Marketing Done Right: Deadpool

Yes, the trailers for Deadpool are nothing short of glorious. Seriously, I can not wait until February 12th! I am ridiculously excited. But it really is the other marketing that is making me super excited for the proper cinematic version of the Merc with a Mouth.

Take the following, for example:

Brilliant AND entertaining. Plus, they really are awesome PSAs. Everyone SHOULD be touching themselves.

Deadpool may actually make the Universe forgive Ryan Reynolds for the Green Lantern*.

*I still maintain it could have been a good flick. While Reynolds isn’t really Hal Jordan material (He has always been Wade Wilson to me – even after the steaming pile of crap that was X-Men Origins: Wolverine – totally not his fault, but I digress). GL just suffered from ABYSMAL editing.

…That Time I Met Cancer Man

In honour of the X-Files revival that starts tonight (!!), I give you this – one of my most prized possessions.

William B. Davis and I, circa 1999

That, my friends, is a 25 year old me that time that AvD and I met William B. Davis, everyone’s favourite Cigarette Smoking Man.  It was at MacEwan Hall Ballroom for a spoken word event circa February 1999. I have a vague recollection of him discussing science, physics and all sorts of smart things.  We had the opportunity for a meet-n-greet after.  He was so very KIND and SWEET. Nothing like his infamous character at all and thus, secured him as one of my favourites for all time.  He signed our tickets and took a photo with each of us.  I was so excited and nervous!

I have a shit eating grin in the photo. But in my head, all I could think was:

“OH MY GOD! CANCER MAN IS TOUCHING ME! CANCER MAN IS TOUCHING ME!”

It was amazing and he was amazing! And I can’t wait to see him in the revival!  I know AvD is excited about seeing her Duchovny in the suit. Me? I am all about Mr. William B. Davis! Can’t wait!

Farewell, Moffat!

Steven Moffat
Finally.

Steven Moffat is FINALLY leaving Doctor Who.

If you know me, you know that I think Steven Moffat is a fantastic writer, but an absolute shit show runner.  He has given the Whoiverse some of the BEST episodes ever written. Both in Who and in the science fiction genre as a whole. He gives Joss Whedon a run for his money. “Blink”, “The Silence in the Library”, “The Forest of the Dead” and “The Empty Child” are brilliant pieces of television.    He also introduced Captain Jack Harkness and River Song (who upon initial introduction was a fantastically wonderful character despite what happened to her in later seasons).    He was one of the strongest resources in the Who writer toolbox since the first season of the 2005 reboot.

After Russell T. Davies left and Moffat took over as show runner, well, things changed.  Now, yes, full disclosure, David Tennant‘s Ten is my Doctor and will always be my Doctor. So I adore anything that RTD gave us – even the schmalz-y ‘shippy stuff.  So when Moffat took over, well, Who was not really my Who anymore.  Yes, Matt Smith‘s Eleven was fantastic (and in my opinion, much darker than Peter Capaldi‘s Twelve*) and I loved Eleven almost as much as Ten. And because of Matt Smith’s portrayal of Eleven, I continued to persevere with Moffat’s Who.

But I dunno, things changed.  The storylines became unnecessarily confusing and convoluted, time was way too timey-wimey, a bit of misogyny started to rear its head, River Song was absolutely decimated as a character, Clara/The Impossible Girl was a wasted opportunity, and so on.  I even thought with the addition as Capaldi’s Twelve that things might improve, but instead it got worse. By the time, my viewing of the second episode of Season 8 had finished, I just could not support Moffat anymore. I continued to watch, but would complain after almost every episode.  It hurt my heart to be so annoyed and upset with a show that I loved so much. I was counting the episodes until he announced his departure.

And today he did.  After next season (which, unfortunately, won’t air until 2017), Moffat will depart and Chris Chibnall** will be taking over. I am ecstatic about this.  I loved both Broadchurch (gads, it was SO good) and Torchwood.  I think he will breathe much needed life into the series.  I can’t wait!

As for Moffat, he was an abysmal fit for Doctor Who, but his tenure running Sherlock has been nothing short of AMAZING.  “The Adominable Bride” was absolutely brilliant and the creative collective between himself, Mark Gatiss, Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman is GLORIOUS.  It just keeps getting better and better which is not something I could say about Doctor Who.  So now that he is stepping out of the TARDIS, I wait with bated breath for him to step into 221B Baker Street once more.

Unrelated, if they make that Labyrinth reboot that I have been hearing about all day, I will cut a bitch.

Heath, you are still missed. :(  I can’t believe its been eight years.

*Its a fact.  Tears of a clown and all that. Don’t try and argue with me. I will fight you.
**Though, Toby Whithouse would have been even MORE amazing.  But Chibnall is rad.

Uhm, Hai?

So yah, its been a while.

For the last few months of 2015, I was in a weird place. On one hand, things were really awesome on the theatre end of things.  Tommy was getting ready to move into the theatre.  Catch Me was cast and started rehearsals. I agreed to prop a proper play called She Kills Monsters about D&D that I am very excited about. I get to make some rad things and the play, itself, pretty much depicts me and my life when I was 22 or 23 years old.  We also decided on the 2016-2017 season for FRC.  It was pretty stellar couple of months on that front.

On the other hand, the remainder of 2015 had me in a really not-so-awesome place. I don’t really discuss mental health or depression or anything like that.  Not here and not really with anyone in my life. I just don’t. Its too private and too in-my-head. It’s too… well, my shit and not anyone else’s.   So I’m not going to change that particular behaviour now. All I will say is that there was a lot of really dark and ugly stuff in my head for the month of December and into the early part of January.  Now, most folks probably wouldn’t have noticed because I am a fucking amazing actress, a great faker, and stunning liar when it comes to putting on a happy face when I am actually in a seemingly endless pit of emotional despair. Still, as usual, I pulled (mostly) through.  I am too stubborn to be swallowed up by it for too long. Fact.

Now we are in a fairly shiny-and-new year, things are better. I am still out of work, but I have returned to school.   I am doing some academic upgrading through SAIT with a longer goal of returning to do a really-real program once I have improved some of my grades.  It’s a crazy awesome thing that happened on a whim at the end of December.  I just thought “Fuck it, why not?” and submitted my application.   Like I said, its crazy, but it is awesome! I am only two weeks into the semester and so far, so good.  I am taking English (which I love), Chemistry (which I think I love) and Math (which I am trying love).  I am learning things everyday and I could not be happier about it.  Learning is the BEST.  And honestly? It’s probably the main thing that yanked me out of my portable hole of angst.  So, its cool.

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So That Time I Blocked A Scene…

Yesterday, I attempted to block my first scene.  Ever.  It was a small scene with three actors. Thankfully, I was blessed with three very awesome and patient humans who really tried to make the experience fantastic and easy. I can’t even imagine trying to do it with other actors (thank you again, DR, BR and TK!).  And of course, JZ and LW were there to support me (you guys are my favourites!).  It was a great situation for a neophyte like me to be in.

Unfortunately, it did not go well as I expected hoped. Yes, I am harder on myself than I need to be, but I struggled with intention and insecurity. Then the scene just ended up looking so… boring.  But! JZ (as we had agreed before the rehearsal) jumped in to save a floundering me.  So all is certainly not lost, but the scene is definitely still a work in progress.

After rehearsal, I felt crushed (strong word, I know, but it fits). I let a whole shitstorm of insecurity and other self-condemning bullshit wreak havoc in my brain.  Yah, it was awesome. [eyeroll]

But now that I have had some time to think and stew about it, the rehearsal also didn’t go as bad as I originally thought. (Yes, JZ, JD and JER, I know, I know.)  It wasn’t great, but that is OK. I mean, I am learning, right?  The first time I drew a portrait, it looked like balls. And now I am a fucking superstar when it comes to my portrait work.  Maybe with some time, patience, listening and more learning, I will improve.  And perhaps, maybe, just maybe, I would be willing to try it again. (Who am I kidding? I will try it again. I am a masochist.) It really was a valuable learning experience for me.

In hindsight, the three things I took away from it:

  1. 1. All of the Directors I have worked with are/were Performers.  Like ALL of them.  I couldn’t even think of a single Director that I have worked with that didn’t also perform at some point.  This is a huge realization that I had in the shower this morning.  They have a very special insight into how this directing thing works because they have been on the opposite end and have a greater understanding of the Actor brain/process.  I am coming into this thing not truly understanding either so it will likely take me a lot longer to process and learn.
  2. 2. Come to rehearsal prepared. Overprepare if you have to. I thought I understood the scene and I thought I was prepared. But I really, really wasn’t. I should have taking much more time preparing and understanding what I wanted to get out of the scene.
  3. 3. Ask Questions and Pay Attention.  I am in a great situation where I am/will be the Assistant Director to two really awesome Directors and two even more awesome humans.   After yesterday, I didn’t really have a strategy for what I am doing as an Assistant Director. I pay attention in rehearsal, but I don’t ask questions when I don’t understand something or I don’t try to figure out where all of the ideas come from.  I need to be more engaged in the learning process.  Hell, maybe even a bit obnoxious. (You have been warned JZ and CB!) Learning is an active process – my artwork has taught me that time and time again – so I need to start being more active as a mentee.

But TL;DR…

I blocked my first scene, it sucked, but that’s ok. And I will probably do it again.

Tech Week of Show One… Done!

I have been a bit MIA over the last few weeks.  A lot has been going on. A lot of difficult things.  Getting ready to be unemployed as well as trying to get all of my shit together for Drood tech week. It was a classic case of Past!Kris fucking over Future!Kris.  She’s such an asshole. ;)

Tech week has come and gone. It was probably one of the toughest tech weeks that I have gone through in the last few years.  Very long hours and loads of stress.  But the Droods team is amazing and dedicated. Instead of cutting set pieces for time, we rallied and made shit work even if it meant staying at the theatre until 4 or 5 am on multiple days.  It was exhausting, but seeing the set in the space kind of made it worth it.  I am extraordinarily proud of the set that JZ and myself came up with – we collaborated really, really well – and even prouder of the folks that helped make this ridiculously ambitious thing a reality.  We have received many compliments on the set and that feels really awesome. Especially given where we were on Monday of tech week.  I would even go so far as to say that I am 95%* pleased with my contribution to the set. Crazy, right?

But, I will say this, as an artist, seeing something that gestated in your brain, then came out your fingers, then was made REALLY LARGE and put under a bunch of theatre lights for hundreds of people to see…. it is very surreal.

Awesome, but, surreal.

Now that Drood is in – you should buy tickets! – I can turn my attention to Tommy (first run of Act I tonight! Yay!) and Catch Me If You Can… and ya know, maybe find a job, clean my house, take a nap, or something.

*Only 95% because there is ALWAYS room for improvement. Otherwise, its all entropy and stagnation. I don’t give a shit who you are.

The X-Files Revival Trailer

The trailer for the X-Files revival dropped yesterday. Well, a longer one.

I finally watched it. And while I am not 100% sold on the revival, I have a tiny amount of excitement – if only for the words “We have a small problem” (chills!!!)  and that cigarette wielding hand.

So here’s the thing. I love the X-Files.  Well, 1990s X-Files.  I have seen every single episode of the original series a multitude of times.  I watched the original flick.  I faithfully watched very short-lived The Lone Gunmen series. One of my most prized possessions is a photo of myself with William B. Davis*. Hell, unlike a lot of folks, I even genuinely loved Agent John Doggett when Robert Patrick came on the show to replace Duchovny.

But when the show jumped the shark with the awful Mulder/Scully romance-y business… and that kid… It made me so angry.  Ask AvD.  I still rage when she brings up the X-Files.  I never, not-once ‘shipped Mulder/Scully and it annoyed (continues to annoy?) the piss out of me when other people did and when Chris Carter ended up doing it? Well, I was so MAD!

When the show ended, it was bittersweet.  I missed the show, but I had grown so disenchanted with the two lead characters (especially when Mulder came back) that I wasn’t sad to see it go.  And my annoyance was so powerful that I flat out REFUSED to see the flick that came out in 2008.  I figured it was a cash grab. And I, in fact, still haven’t seen it.

Now, I am slowly warming to the idea of a new series. Very slowly. Like tortoise pace.  And its not because I particularly care about Mulder and Scully – cuz I don’t. At all. Its more the other characters that I miss. With the promise of Cancer Man, Skinner and my Lone Gunmen making appearances (Uhm, Krycek? Please?), I am thawing on my No-X-Files reboot hardline and may actually watch it in January.

But I’ll tell you this…. one smoochy between Mulder and Scully? And we will be friends off again! ;)

*CSM and Krycek are my favourites and will always be my favourites. 

 

Uhm, Heathers the Musical..?!

heathers

It’s confessional time!

As I have mentioned before, I LOVE Heathers the film.  I will thunderdome anyone who says anything negative about it because it is so much a part of my existence (I am look at you, DR! ;) ) And I adore the music from the musical.  I am very excited to be a part of the production that Cappuccino Theatre is putting on early next year.  So, in spite of not seeing the stage production yet, there is already much love for this musical.

But then….

I started watching a bootleg version of the original stage production on the Youtubes.

Friends, I can not tell a lie. I am barely into Act I and I am BORED TO DEATH (no pun intended).  The characterizations are weird – especially Veronica. She is more of a bubblehead that I am comfortable with. The blocking and choreography are so boring (especially given the source material). And the stagecraft? Ugh, it is so visually dull and uninspiring.  I mean, they got the Heathers-Cubed and Veronica colour palette right, but that’s about it.

And don’t get me started on JD. Just don’t.

I feel bad saying that it is boring or anything negative – especially since the music is so amazing and its, well, Heathers.  But man. It hurts my brain and my soul.

On the flipside, this just means that our version is going to be FRICKING amazing in comparison.  Especially given who is on our team. Most of the people on the team couldn’t make an ugly, boring, or uninspiring show if their lives depended on it, so, yah, it will be rad.   That fills me with hope.

Because, that original production…. dang.

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Change on the Horizon

A couple of days ago, word finally arrived that I was getting laid off.  They are relocating my role to the corporate head office in Scottsdale, Arizona.  It’s something that I had been expecting on and off since about March so it came as no great surprise.  And the timing? Well, probably perfect. I have been unhappy in my position for a while, there was no room for growth and I needed a change. I have been doing the same thing for the last seven years.   This is the nudge I need.

So, while getting laid off is always kind of sucky, I am happy.  My severance package is acceptable, I don’t have to travel to train my replacement, and I am going to spend much of my remaining time working from home.  My last day is October 15th so I have just under a month to get all of my ducks in a row and figure out my next move.

And therein lies my problem.

I know I need a career change. Lately, I have been very unhappy doing what I am doing. The only reason that I haven’t left sooner is because of the stable pay cheque and it was safe.* But now that isn’t a safety net, I need to re-evaluate.   I know this will be an on-going process, but I think my current plan is threefold:

1. Find a job.  Obviously. Likely in a similar field/role that I am currently in.  This is short term to handle the human requirements – food, shelter, paying my credit card bills. I might even consider doing some temp/contract work.  Not sure.  Luckily, its just me that I have to worry about.

2. Education. I decided a while ago that becoming a Project Manager is probably a good idea.  With my small amount of experience producing shows, I think I could be a really good Project Manager. It isn’t industry dependent and you can make a decent living as a successful Project Manager.  But I lack formal education and experience.  There are certificate programs through SAIT, U of C or Mount Royal that I could do through Continuing Education.  However, this is entirely contingent on #1 – I have to pay for tuition/books somehow.  Thankfully, however, it is not contingent on a huge time commitment as most of the classes are workshop based. I could possibly have the certificate completed in a short couple of months. So there is that.

3. Art business. I would very much like to resurrect my art business. I have a very strong desire to be a creator and art maker who is in charge of my own creative destiny.  This one is a bit foggier. Mostly because I do not know what a resurrected art business would look like.  It is something that I need to consider, research and plan.  It would be a side business for sure. But planning on the front end will help eliminate headaches on the back end.  Taking some classes at ACAD probably wouldn’t be a bad thing either.  They have some certificate programs for Illustration and Graphic Design that I might be interested down the road. You can’t have too much education, right?

Now, I get it.  All three are kind of loosey-goosey – some more than others.  They are high level ideas that require a lot more thought and research before any of them are ready to be implemented.  But its good to start thinking about these things now.   The refinements can come later.

All I know is that this is just the first step in the on-going journey of trying to figure out what I wanna do when I grow up. Especially since apparently no one will pay me to play video games, watch flicks and oogle my Tom Hardy.

*The job market in Calgary isn’t awesome right now.