Last weekend, I had the distinct pleasure of collaborating with a bunch of my friends on a film for this year’s L.A. 48-Hour Film Project. Specifically, I was assigned to the writing team for Hold For Plane’s submission, along with Lisa K. Wyatt (with whom I collaborated previously on Get a Clue, and Courtney Bell, who produced Rule #4, a film I also co-wrote for HFP. The Writers Room was rounded out by director Graydon Schlichter and D.P./Editor Travis Joe Dixon.

At 7:40pm on Friday the 3rd, we received our prompts. We had to include the following elements:

  • Character: Kip or Kim Wallace, Event Planner
  • Prop: A Ball
  • Line: “It’s not as easy as it looks.” OR “It is not as easy as it looks.”

Lisa was on-site at the kickoff event and drew our genre options out of a hat. We got Time Travel and Spy/Espionage. We decided to use both genres because we’re overachievers like that.

The team gathered around Courtney’s kitchen table, and we got to work

And then we proceeded to spend the next three hours beating our collective heads against the wall trying to come up with an espionage plot that didn’t create a world-ending paradox. Because time-travel has got to be one of the most difficult genres in which to tell a story.

We also had to figure out how to best incorporate our shooting location (studio/stage) and create interesting, fleshed-out characters with arcs that lasted somewhere between four to seven minutes, not including credits, for our incredibly talented cast (Heather Lynn, Kimberly Niccole, and Jenn).

However, once we figured out a plotline, everything fell into place, and the script was finished less than two hours later. Before I headed to Courtney and Jerad’s Friday night, Jenn told me to write her a good role. I think we delivered.

An unexpected obligation kept me away from studio/stage during the shoot on Saturday, but Sunday afternoon, I headed over to Travis’ apartment to help fix a technical problem with the flash drives we were going to use to deliver the film to the judges, and I wound up staying for most of the afternoon to represent the writers as Travis and Graydon finalized the cut. Then, Jenn and I had the pleasure of representing Hold For Plane as we submitted the final product to the judges.

So, what’s next? Well, if you’ve watched the trailer (above), or looked closely at the poster (also above), you may have noticed that there’s a screening planned for next Thursday, August 16th at 9:30pm at the Regal Cinemas at L.A. Live. That’s right, our little film is going to be shown on the big screen for one night only. Tickets are on sale now for $18 each. We’re a part of Screening Group D.

If you’re free that night and want to see some really fun, creative projects, I hope you’ll come on out and support HFP!

If you haven’t done one of these 48-hour film challenges before, they’re a blast. I highly recommend you try them. No matter what your discipline in the film industry, you can get some really quick and easy (and occasionally top-notch) demo reel material, and make some awesome memories in the process.

From what I understand, there’s another one of these coming up in September that HFP’s going to do, and then another one beyond that, in October or November. And apparently, I’m slated to act in one of them.

Hold on to your butts.