Hey buddy, you wanna make a movie?

he took her to a movie

when i was a bird via Compfight

I realize this is probably the worse possible day to announce this, since many of you will now doubt if it's true or not. Heck, one person in question might currently be wondering if this is some elaborate April Fool's prank on my part. Wouldn't that be funny? "Hey pal, let me toy with your dreams and aspirations for a bit."

Oh, but you guys are probably wondering what I'm even talking about.

A little while ago, I mentioned that I would be creating a feature-length documentary based on my summer Fringe tour, currently titled On the Fringe. We've been mad at work behind the scenes to get all this together. More announcements will be coming out in the following days, but in the meantime, I wanted to introduce you to the two crazy people coming along for the ride:

First up, there's Natalie Watson, my co-producer and an incredibly talented film editor who's a graduate of the British Columbia Institute of Technology Broadcasting Program. Natalie and I have been in pre-production for some time now and I am thrilled to have someone like her onboard.

Just check out her mad skillz with this Day in the Life project she did for her school and tell me you're not as excited as I am at the thought of this documentary.

Day in the Life Project - Jeff Gladstone from Natalie Watson on Vimeo.

Which brings me to the new guy on the team. Many of you might already know Cory Thibert as one of half of the fun and engaging May Can Theatre duo, but did you know he was also a talented filmmaker? His short films are currently getting rave reviews and making the rounds. Be sure to check out Stiff Quickies a fundraiser film festival for the Ottawa Fringe Festival and you'll know exactly what I mean. Cory is going to be directing the film as we travel across the country and I couldn't be happier. I also repeat, this is not a joke.

We're going to be making movie magic together. It's going to be an awesome summer.

The Evolution of a Show

2009 - The idea of a roller derby show  comes to mind. I start researching the sport, interview people involved and writing scenes. My show is nowhere near ready for Fringe so I decide to do something else. Something else bombs and I give up writing for a whole year. 2011 - Opportunity to be in the Ottawa Fringe Festival presents itself and I take it. I dust off the old scenes and start writing a show. It goes... not that well at first.

Uh... something something roller skates.

Regardless, it becomes an unquestionable success. And after Ottawa, I took all the feedback I got and wrote another draft for the Hamilton Fringe, where things also went well. Did one more performance in Ottawa that year with a few minor changes and that was that. As I needed money, I took a self-imposed break from the arts to work a few full-time jobs. I was not going to tour in 2012.

2012 - A roller derby lady in Swift Current, SK had heard about the show and wanted it for a theatre festival she curates. Barely any changes are made to the script. If it ain't broke don't fix it. I set up a successful Indiegogo campaign to take the show on a full cross-Canada tour in 2013.

2013 - I only get into two festivals - three after all was said and done. I decide to finally get a proper sound design for the show. There's a few more minor script rewrites with some Toronto dramaturgy help, but the main focus is on sound. Once more, the show does well, but I end the year with an unsettled feeling. I decide to tour again next year and apply to the big Canadian Fringe Festival lottery. I put in almost every city on the tour because I don't think I will actually win.

2014 - I win the lottery and start preparing for the biggest tour yet. I've hired a choreographer and we've changed the show's set design, but the unsettled feeling has returned. If it ain't broke don't fix it, but... Parts of the script just don't feel right anymore. I have a chat with my director and she agrees. I've grown up and, if I want to keep doing it, the show has to grow up too. In fact, this sums it up pretty well:

THE GAP by Ira Glass from frohlocke on Vimeo.

My taste is so high and, as good and fun as RDSMS has been, it's not as great as it could be. This is a scary thought. The show is a proven entity. It does well. If I leave it as is, I will have a good summer. It won't be a creatively fulfilling summer, but it will be a good, safe one.

But I didn't get into this business to be safe. So, I've decided to go back to the beginning and dig deeper. Will you like it? I hope so. In fact, I think you will because I'm still going to be a charming little presence on stage. But my goal is to be a truer one in both my writing and my performance.

Will I ever be satisfied? I don't know. I'd love to hear from other creators on that one. Are you ever done? Is a painting done when you finally hang it on a wall? Is a song complete just because it's been recorded? Is a writer ever satisfied when he or she has scribbled out the last page?

I, in the meantime, will go back to a writing exercise that my lovely creative partner has asked me to finish before our story meeting tonight. An exercise I have judiciously procrastinated on by doing my taxes and writing this blog post. Because when I know something is good for me, I'm going to put it off as long as I can.

Stay tuned...