Thursday, August 8, 2013

Vicissitude at The Plaza Classic

            This past weekend went by in an instant as I hung out with family and friends back home in El Paso, TX/Juarez, Mexico, but more importantly, presented Vicissitude at the El Paso Plaza Classic Film Festival as part of their “Local Flavor” selection.

            The screening took place at the Museum of Art in downtown El Paso. It was nice to check out some of the very impressive pieces of art they had on display. A good number of people showed up to the El Paso Energy Auditorium at the museum to watch the documentary; it was nice to see so much support from close family and friends, some cast members, Kickstarter donors, as well as strangers (some who are now friends).

            Optimum Exposure TV, a start-up video and photography company, came out to photograph the event and do a short interview for their website and YouTube channel.

Interview in English

Interview in Spanish

            Sunday I had the opportunity to meet a few students who traveled from different cities of the United States to attend the festival. I was approached by my friend Oscar Garza, who is a writer for TheProspector and a Plaza Classic Film Club Facilitator, to talk to them about the process of making the documentary, some of the challenges, and many other things. He then invited me to watch The Third Man (1949) on beautiful 35mm at the Kendle Kidd Performance Hall. It would’ve been a sin to leave El Paso without catching a classic flick at the festival.

            It was a great weekend and the lack of sleep was totally worth it. Being home this past weekend for both business and pleasure made me realize I am blessed to have many individuals around me who support and love me, but push me to be the best I can be. Oprah once said, “Surround yourself with only people that are going to lift you higher.” I try to stand by those words on a consistent basis.

Ricardo Ramos Copyright 2013

Thursday, August 1, 2013

An Evening With "Lone Ranger" Crew Members

            Hello friends, I hope everyone’s doing well. I am actually feeling somewhat melancholic as I type this blogpost because I’m sitting at my last class at Full Sail University. Thanks to this master’s program, I started this blog and have been blessed to meet new people through here. I want to thank my 300 unique visitors and the over 4,000 people who have viewed my blog this past year. But anyway, as a 1st AD I worked with once said, “There’s no crying in film.”

            My topic for today is about a Q&A panel I attended a week ago at Full Sail. The event was hosted by “Women in Film & Television Florida” and featured three crewmembers from Disney’s The Lone Ranger. The panel consisted of Andrew Campbell (production assistant), Ann-Maree Hurley (make-up artist), and Todd Warren (stunt double for Johnny Depp).

            All three of them spoke to students and guests about how they got started in the industry, what other films they have worked on, and the overall experience working on the Jerry Bruckheimer film.

            They all agreed that one of the most challenging aspects of working on this film was shooting in the middle of the desert in Arizona under infernal conditions, as well as experiencing some sandstorms occasionally. The shoot took nine months to complete and took place in five different states. For Todd, he said the most challenging thing he had to do was a “yo-yo” stunt while riding a horse.

            The panel lasted a couple of hours, and of course, someone in the audience had to ask them towards the end what their thoughts on the box-office results are. For those of you who don’t know, the film hasn’t been doing too well considering that the budget was $215 million. However, it is still being released in other countries and I mean, most of a summer "blockbuster's" profit is made overseas. Ann-Maree has seen it five times and loves it more each time she sees it. They are all proud of the end product and encouraged the crowd to show some love and go see it. Based on everything I learned at this panel, I am definitely taking some time to go see it and I’m looking forward to it. If you have seen it, what are your thoughts on the film?