Ghosts With Shit Jobs

In 2040, the economic collapse of the west is complete and the east is in full ascendance. North Americans now do the undesirable jobs to cater to wealthy Asian and Indian markets. A Chinese documentary show called Window On the World focuses a compassionate eye on these unlucky enough to have been born in the slums of Toronto in a special report entitled ‘Ghosts With Shit Jobs’. Oscar is a digital janitor, and has to manually cover up logos for copyright reasons in the future’s answer to Google StreetView. Gary and Karen assemble robot baby dolls for the children of the wealthy in Asia. Anton and Toph are spider silk collectors. Serina is human spam and makes a living by mentioning brands in casual conversation.

Check out the trailer on the official site.

Jul 242012
 

I’m involved with the new Lo-fi Sci-fi 48 Hour Film Challenge that’s happening at the end of August. In my role as Creative Director I’ve programmed four Lo-fi Sci-fi Salons in the run-up to the Challenge.

Each Salon will be hosted by a different local filmmaker who will be showing some inspiring fantastical shorts and then sharing some tips from their experience making science fiction movies. There’ll be lots of time before and after to meet & drink with other lo-fi sci-fi enthusiasts.

  • July 30: I will be chatting with Louis Savy, Programmer for SCI-FI-LONDON, over Skype. S-F-L is a big inspiration, and we’ll be watching some of the best shorts from its long-running 48 hr Film Challenge.
  • Aug. 6: Matthew Nayman (“Blind Spot“) will be talking quick and dirty visual effects
  • Aug. 13: David Fernandes (“Re-Wire“) will be sharing tips on props and sets on the cheap
  • Aug. 20: the folks behind the upcoming feature A Brand New You

They’re happening Mondays at 7pm at the Monarch (12 Clinton St., Toronto). They’re free and open to the public — you don’t have to be signed up for the Challenge.

But you totally should! It’s a great way to collaborate with new people, try something too weird and experimental for a feature, and get something small and achievable in the can. Hot tip: if you check out the first Salon you’ll get a sense of what it’s about and still have time to get the Early Bird rate ($50/team til Aug 1st).

Jun 072012
 

Only now recovered from the Toronto Ghosts With Shit Jobs screening last week — we sold out the theatre and got a really nice response from people. Thanks to all the folks who came!

We showed trailers prior to the screening for our pals at Iron Sky, ByoLogic, Manborg and Rasputin’s Bastards, and afterwards Sean announced the Lo-fi Sci-fi 48hr Film Challenge and I showed off a brand-new GHOSTS USB Bracelet.

We’re excited about our next screening and Q&A: Saturday July 14th at 8pm at MIT in Boston. It’s a free screening and open to the public, and I’m doing a bunch of other game related stuff while I’m in town.

May 272012
 


It’s been a wild week! Our Kickstarter ended up raising $20,000 (quadruple what we asked for!) and we got the Best Feature award from the awesome Sci-Fi-London fest. The Grid also just posted a great article on the movie with a bunch of tips from me on low budget filmmaking — the writer really got the spirit of the thing, with phrases like “happiness is the only real currency exchanged on an all-volunteer set.”

Next week of course we have our North American premiere in Toronto. (We’re 2/3s full at this point, so you might want to pre-order tickets.) But the day before that is the party for the new issue of Spacing — the Disaster issue. Spacing is one of my favourite magazines both to read and to write for, and I’m delighted to reveal that I wrote a Ghosts With Shit Jobs-inspired spread in this issue — it’s a tour given by Anton Karrento of Toronto in 2040. Plus, the Karrento Brothers are going to be at the magazine launch party, combing the area for spider silk caches in the nooks and crannies of the Evergreen Brick Works. Spacing parties are always fun and the location’s amazing — come on out!

The little article below was a sidebar that didn’t end up in the spread, but I thought I’d post it here as an early taste. Continue reading »

May 142012
 

I’m not crazy about Blu-ray, so I started to think of alternative ways to deliver the 1080p version of the movie and came across these usb bracelets. When I started to think about what else you could put on it, I realized there was a connection to one of the ideas in the movie: that in 2025 the Cloud was repossessed. I like the idea that people can also use it to store their own locally owned data, as insurance against that day. Or even if nothing happens, for a time when you make the choice to get off the Cloud (or the grid) and find out that something you clicked I Agree to years ago limits that choice.

You can buy it here. (Sorry, only DVDs left now.) More thoughts below. Continue reading »