Screening Day / Filmmaker Award Show

Saturday afternoon was the first screening of Gone Doggy Gone in San Diego.  The turnout was light, but the crowd was warm and enthusiastic.  Cinematographer Garrett O'Brien, Shaina Vorspan (who played Jill), Edward Winters (who played Devon), all joined Kasi and Brandon (and of course Laila) at the screening. The film looked great - sound was fantastic. I had only previewed it on my IPad so it was great to see it with a live audience on the big screen.  Nothing beats the experience of watching a movie in a theater.  It was nice to see it a second time in it's entirety.  I picked up on a number of things I hadn't notice the first go around.  I was starting to feel like an insider....Kate Conner (who played Kat) joined them after the screening.  She was planning to be at the Q&A after the film, but Los Angeles to San Diego traffic is brutal on Saturdays.  After a little down time in the VIP lounge and a quick dinner it was off to the Filmmakers Awards Show at the US Grant Hotel.  The event is typical with various honors and awards to the best films of the festival.  The US Grant's basement ballroom and the scripted format made for a much better show than in years past.  There was a nice rhythm to the night that had been missing poolside at the Palomar.  Even so, it was a big disappointment for the Gone Doggy Gone group. They were not included in any of the awards or recognitions. I think that ultimately surprised them.  I'm sure the fact that they had a photographer following them around for 3 days had set them up for something big.  I regret I may have contributed to their higher expectations.  I too was disappointment they didn't win, but not surprised.  I loved the film and thought it deserved recognition, but there were other filmmakers that seemed to be the darlings of the show.  Still, Kasi and Brandon made a number of connections while they were at the festival.  And they made a fantastic feature comedy, which is no small task. 

 The Star

The Star

 Edward (Devon) and his fiancee in the Gaslamp

Edward (Devon) and his fiancee in the Gaslamp

 Cast & Crew hanging out in the Gaslamp Quarter

Cast & Crew hanging out in the Gaslamp Quarter

 Laila making friends

Laila making friends

 Photo Op - Kasi and Brandon and their biggest fan

Photo Op - Kasi and Brandon and their biggest fan

 Movie Poster - Gone Doggy Gone

Movie Poster - Gone Doggy Gone

 Kasi and Brandon beginning the Q & A after the screening

Kasi and Brandon beginning the Q & A after the screening

 Cast & crew Q & A (L-R) Edward Winters, Kasi Brown, Brandon Walter, Garrett O'Brien, Shaina Vorspan and the moderator

Cast & crew Q & A (L-R) Edward Winters, Kasi Brown, Brandon Walter, Garrett O'Brien, Shaina Vorspan and the moderator

 Brandon hikes to the VIP Lounge

Brandon hikes to the VIP Lounge

 Post Screening in the VIP lounge

Post Screening in the VIP lounge

 Cast & Crew strolling down 5th Avenue under the Reading Theater marquee

Cast & Crew strolling down 5th Avenue under the Reading Theater marquee

 Shaina and the gang at the Filmmakers Awards

Shaina and the gang at the Filmmakers Awards

 Tired feet

Tired feet

 Taking it all in at the Filmmakers Award Show

Taking it all in at the Filmmakers Award Show

 A Toast....

A Toast....

Gone Doggy Gone / Friday at the San Diego Film Festival

Friday was pretty chill.  Lots of down time. Brandon and Kasi dealt with the nagging issue of syncing up their movie with the theater's projection system.   They had been less than successful getting that done on Thursday. They finally got with the projectionist at the Reading and were able to sort it out.  It was also party night!  Almost Famous party at the Tin Roof - mostly drinking, schmoozing, and playing life size Jenga....sorry, Tumbling Towers

 Missing Dog Posters

Missing Dog Posters

 Meeting development exec Mark Cartier

Meeting development exec Mark Cartier

 Something about a plane.....

Something about a plane.....

 Final transfer of the film to the theater

Final transfer of the film to the theater

 Brandon,  Edward Winters  and his fiance gather in the lobby of the Palomar

Brandon, Edward Winters and his fiance gather in the lobby of the Palomar

 On our way to the Almost Famous Party

On our way to the Almost Famous Party

 Strutting under the marquee lights of the Reading Gaslamp

Strutting under the marquee lights of the Reading Gaslamp

 Dos Corona

Dos Corona

 Kasi choosing carefully

Kasi choosing carefully

 I Heart Boobies!

I Heart Boobies!

 Kasi with the final pull.  Kasi and Brandon were honestly 2 of the best Jenga (tumbling towers) players I've ever seen!

Kasi with the final pull.  Kasi and Brandon were honestly 2 of the best Jenga (tumbling towers) players I've ever seen!

Follow the Filmmakers Thursday - 2014 San Diego Film Festival

For the last few years I've gone Behind the Scenes at the San Diego Film Festival.  This year, in order to keep it fresh, I decided to follow one of the filmmakers during their time at the festival.  Festival producer Stephanie Inscoe gave me a couple of movies to screen ahead of time so I could see who might make for an interesting follow.  I watched several films and wasn't too inspired until I saw Gone Doggy Gone.  It's a small indie film by Kasi Brown and Brandon Walter.  The premise is simple.  A childless couple with a dog they love "too much" and what happens when that dog disappears.  It's not an epic tale like the other films I watched tried to be.  It's just a well crafted comedy written, directed, and starring Brown and Walter

I knew through Stephanie that the 2 filmmakers would be in town for the festival.  She also said many of the cast and crew would be in attendance.  It sounded like a perfect fit.  My first contact with the Gone Doggy Gone folks was a couple of hours prior to the Night of the Stars event at the Museum of Contemporary Art in La Jolla.  So at the last minute I grabbed my cameras and met Kasi, Brandon and Laila (Kasi's real dog and co-star in the movie) at their hotel in the Gaslamp Quarter.  From there we headed out to La Jolla for their  debut at the festival. 

While they were not officially on the list of celebrities in attendance for the Red Carpet they made the most of it.  After all that's what an adorable Yorkshire terrier is for, right.  After a brief stint on the carpet they lined up with the rest of the VIPs and waited to enter the theater.  And waited....

 Kasi and Laila on our way to the Night of the Stars in La Jolla

Kasi and Laila on our way to the Night of the Stars in La Jolla

 On the road and a little FaceTime back home

On the road and a little FaceTime back home

 We've arrived at the Museum of Contemporary Art

We've arrived at the Museum of Contemporary Art

 Final check before the Red Carpet

Final check before the Red Carpet

 Laila waiting her turn for the Red Carpet

Laila waiting her turn for the Red Carpet

 Kasi, Brandon and Laila on the Red Carpet

Kasi, Brandon and Laila on the Red Carpet

 Dog Paparazzo

Dog Paparazzo

 In the theater, finally...!

In the theater, finally...!

Rogo Family Portrait

At the east end of the Waipio Valley, along a mile long stretch of black sand beach, at the base of a 1500 foot cliff, with waterfalls spilling into the ocean, in the late afternoon, the light is just so... it's the perfect time and space for a Rogo family portrait.