WORLD PREMIERE: Sex, Drugs, & Film: The Rise and Fall of Danman Productions - Part II
Fifteen years after being shot, the sequel to Sex, Drugs, & Film is finally complete!
A LITTLE BACKGROUND FIRST...
Filmed simultaneously with Part One, it was supposed to have been edited directly afterward. But because of the limitations of ye olde reel-to-reel editing, the first one took months. I didn't have the time, patience, or stamina to go through that again, and so into storage the tapes went. I recall Matt N. being particularly pissed about it. (All better now, Matt?)
When I raided the vaults last month, no discovery was more exciting than a group of VHS tapes labeled "INTERVIEWS." Just as shocking was the ridiculous amount of documentation on the project: the original handwritten script, the revised typed script, exhaustive transcripts of the interviews, notes on editing and b-roll, and more. I'm a little bit in awe of how seriously I took all of this. I guess I'm still taking it seriously. Maybe I always will.
NOW, ON WITH THE SHOW!
This sequel centers upon The Godfathers: Part Two and how it was the downfall of Danman Productions. Whereas the first half was more about my cast's twisted web of relationships, this one is more about me. Oh, and the lethal cocktail of drugs, blackmail, sex, psychosis, chauvinism, paranoia, and vengeance that hastened my collapse.
Really, though, it's the other stuff in here that had me rolling. The security-camera video of me going ballistic. The blurred interview with "Employee X." Joe's directorial debut. Clips from my proposed Vietnam epic. A long-lost interview with my mom. There's enough here to delight me for another whole fifteen years.
This one was a team effort. I contacted my original narrator, Matt K., and begged him to bring his British accent out of retirement. He did. Then I contacted Tony and pleaded for him to read a relevant paragraph. I had it in one day. Far from the hellish ordeals of shooting the actual movies, this collaboration was peaceful. Not a single person (to my knowledge) got hurt.
I didn't cheat. I followed the script exactly. When it called for music, I chose a piece from the soundtrack to my feature film Ball of Wax. When it said the word INSANE was to be superimposed over my face, well, fine. What you see here is exactly what should have been made in 1995.
There's no way to explain what a joy it was for me to finish this. You get it, though, don't you? It was like going back in a time machine to change the past and finding out that, you know what? The past wasn't so bad. Let's leave it be.
(ABOVE: Deep thought found on the back of my transcript notes.)