During the past few weeks a few things occurred that shaped the status of our beloved “The Campaigners” movie. The first being that we will have to delay the release of our film because of technical issues in post production. The second is that the movie “The Campaign” with Will Ferrell didn’t do well at the box office and we will not be able to really ride on the coat tails of their success. The latter does not hurt my feelings at all but it does worry me about the marketability of our movie. I am not sure if the industry won’t be afraid to actually release a movie like this. I am still really confident in our movie and I know that regardless of what happens when it gets released, who ever sees “The Campaigners” will love it!
We should have a teaser out pretty soon, and it will rock your socks off!
I like the idea of having a test screening. Which will do with the Kansas City Film Coalition in October. My co-writer Brad has been attending the meetings and getting contacts there. It’s a great group and will give us great feedback. I also want to have a test screening here in Chicago which our executive producer is getting contacts put together for us.
I am so anxious to get this done. The process is going slowly but…at least it’s going.
We will try and capitalize off Will Ferrel’s movie ” The Campaign” and use it to our advantage by embracing the similarities and not running from it. I think this is the best business decision as we show it as a take-off of that movie and not shy away from the movie.
I am really excited about the up coming few months and am a little nervous to see how this will appear on screen and how it is received.
Really anxious to get this project finished. I know it will be amazing once finished but there is still so much work to be done. I continually ask for guidance and strength on the project as in how to market it or what we need as far as post-production goes.
I got a job writing for a tv comedy show so that will help us out as far as networking goes. There is a lot of industry folks that will be a great asset to our film if they like our film.
Who knows how this movie will turn out…but it has been a learning process. : )
I am currently looking for music for the film which is fun but a little stressful. I have found myself looking for stuff with a banjo. I love the banjo sound and think that it will fit the movie. So far I haven’t had much luck. I am currently going through a crop of country western music…which I think is really perfect for the small town feel. We currently have a rocking band set up to play at our premiere party in October. It will be well rocking,.
Will Ferrell has the movie “The Campaign” movie coming out. Our movie was originally titled um “The Campaign”.we ended up changing it to “The Campaigners” because of his movie. I love Will Ferrell he is a funny talented guy. But for me he has turned into the Adam Sandler character where it seems all of his movies are the same(only funnier). I will be interested in seeing how similar our movies are. I love what we shot and will be proud of our movie. I can sit here and say “I wish I had their budget to make the movie” but I really don’t feel that. I am not sure the movie would have the charm it will have if we had a bigger budget.
So I just got back from Kansas City and had a really productive evening on Wednesday at Kansas City’s independent film maker’s coalition. Their website @ http://IFCKC.com. It was fun and I was so eager to share my experience with making the “The Campaigners”. I thought it was a lot better than the Chicago meet-up groups because they presented it like a meeting instead of just a hookup spot for filmmakers which is okay I guess. I just feel like I am playing beat the clock when I am talking to people at the meet-up because they actually TIME us. Lol.
But I was the first person to raise my hand when they asked for new people at the Kansas City Independent Filmmaker’s Coalition meeting on Wednesday. I went into my spiel about my film and was able to make the room full of people laugh as well. I am excited to be apart of the IFC through my co writer Brad.
Brad by the way did not want to get up and say he was new. He kept whispering to me “I am only a writer.” But I made him and now he will attend the meetings and be involved with them on a regular basis. Lol
The difference between me and Brad is hilarious as I come across as a fast talking politician compared to him barely able to mumble his information to strangers about the movie he helped write. But I am proud of him and glad he is going to be involved with the Independent Filmmaker’s Coalition of Kansas City. So just chill til the next episode.
I am finding it difficult to find stock footage where I don’t have to pay for it. It’s a fun challenge but also frustrating when I am trying to find just random stock footage. It always says royalty free and then they charge me. If its royalty free why are you charging me!!!
We just had our wrap party and I found it interesting how a few fellow actors came forward and said that when the production started they did not find the script funny and did not really “get it”. Once we started filming however I could tell that all changed as from day one there was a great chemistry on set. Which I believe elevated everybody’s performance…cast and crew. I am glad I didn’t know the actors feelings about the script at the time though.
I am also glad I had friends encouraging me from the start of the project. If I didn’t have that…I would not have the confidence to do the project.
Going into post production. I am so excited yet anxious to see how this will turn out when all is said and done. I had fun shooting it, the cast had fun and we all think it will be funny so right now I feel good about it. My only concern is that will people actually go to see it because as long as they see it I have no doubt they will like it!! It is ridiculous and I look we all act ridiculous in it. I really want the politicians around the country to view it as it’s the Spinal Tap of politics. Well like my Grand Pa always said ” I need a coke to get this hamburger taste out of my mouth” bye
From pre production to production God has blessed the process of making this movie in every way possible. From making the rain stop long enough to get exterior shots, to making it rain to allow us a few days to find locations for a few scenes. And for not having certain actors play roles that we originally casted allowing for the right actor to play the roles. I was never signed on to play Lucas, I was going to play Willard. But two weeks before filming my co-writer who was supposed to play Lucas came down with an illness so I had to step in. I thought at the time this will be a disaster. So we had to rearrange things and put Byron (who auditioned for a much smaller role) as Willard. Needless to say I thought Byron was perfect as Willard and I found my voice as Lucas and made it work. I had so much fun playing Lucas and I couldn’t imagine playing a different role or for that matter anyone else playing Willard other than Byron. He gave us the locations we needed when we needed it. The big concern I had coming into this project was getting the extras we needed for a lot of scenes. We were told we could only rely on the extras if we got any for a few hours. Well…the extras which we got a lot of…not only stayed for more than a few hours but we had so many of them return for multiple days!! I was dumbfounded : ). They told me they were all having so much fun on the set…that they wanted to come back. God just intervened on our behalf so much in this movie!! It was awesome!
Another Blog from the Mind of the Director Ryan McChesney
The one thing my actor friends continually said to me after we filmed their scenes is how good the crew was, headed by Melissa Clay as our Producer/Assistant Director, Bryan Sentiere as our Director of Photography, Anthony Mariotto on sound, John Polaris on lights!! They all rocked it and are responsible for it being such a smooth process! My favorite thing to do was crack the crew up on set…I tried doing that every scene, I would look off to the side and up my characterization to make them laugh. I figure if we can crack them up on set…it has to play well on film.
A blog from the mind of the director, Ryan McChesney.
My directing method is to cast funny people and let them be funny. To me %90 of directing is casting and for this movie we have had an amazing cast from the smallest part to the leads. It’s like playing on a unselfish sports team or a jazz band where every player makes the other player better by playing to their strengths. It’s that way with an ensemble comedy movie…every character is designed to make the other characters funnier by playing everything not for laughs but finding the humor in the situation. It’s like the old saying its funnier seeing a scene with a guy wearing a funny hat but doesn’t know it…than it is seeing a scene with a guy who knows he has a funny hat on. Most of the humor in “The Campaigners” comes from the desperation of the leads to make something of their lives and watching their reaction as their world falls apart around them. It is very character driven. Me, Neal and Byron play everything as serious as possible in chaotic situations which is where the film’s comedy comes from.
As you all know we have been filming an independent movie here in Chicago, we thought we had it all figured out, but of course with filmmaking you run into challenges, and in this case we needed a new title.
The name of the movie has officially been changed to “The Campaigners”. We would like to thank Will Ferrell, Zach Galafianakas and Jason Sudekis for also making a well-timed political comedy.
Big ups for Indie film right here and if you didn’t know our old name, even better!