Friday, 15 November 2013

"Yiv Come This Far Sandy!" (More than 2-Year Blog Update)

In fairly disgraceful fashion, after a long hiatus of making sure this blog was updated on a regular basis, it is now nearer the end of 2013, of which I am to blame I'm afraid. This is me trying to correct that long silence. 

Our twitter feed has been continually updated over the last couple of years with general musings and our progress through the development of the project. Head on over to @TheJobofficial for all the latest and any expectant new news we may have to share. 

Ryan Jon Amey Henderson
Co-creator and Writer

Thursday, 17 November 2011

"Grass Roots" - The Story Thus Far.

Yesterday we received the best news of The JOB's last two years. If you don't know, follow the facebook link here and like our page. Believe me, you will not be disappointed. 

The glass is so full, it's over flowing. 

The void that has been present on the void has been filled on the Facebook page however, with very little to talk about, I have been focusing on the other projects I have had on the slate. Now, with the news that has come through, it feels like time to reflect on the story thus far.

Between myself, Ed and Adam including every one else, we have not felt so much elation over the recent news. 

Little did we know that we'd be in this kind of position when we all met in Borders on Buchanan Street (a store now defunct) to discuss a potential film project within he final weeks of that summer in 2009. Borders Costa became the recognizable safe haven where I would  I remember from the pages of notes I wrote down wet with the tears of laughter that permanently hurt me for the remainder of the day. Stories that were so pitch black dark, appealing to my own sense of humour, they had to be told / shown in one respect or another.

Designed as a feature film venture, Bourac (originally entitled Arc-Angels), was a 100-page script, taking a selection of the stories and giving it a sense of structure. More as an exercise for myself in long-form writing, we had organised a read-through, with a selection of actors and my own journalist friend, Mark, to hear how the script read. Potentially the best moment at that time that cemented it's future as a TV series. 

A year later, of writing, of filming and organising, we have found ourselves, with the guidance of some very special individuals, in the position of professionally producing the series. Beginning with the pilot obviously, we have developed the series into something far more formidable from the original scratchings of meeting everyone (namely Adam) for the first time.

I think, eventually, I will fill in all the gaps and tell the whole story from start to finish, including the many, many ventures we embarked on. For just now, this is our record of what's going on and what's going to happen. 

Two years down. 

... 

Looking forward to the rest.

Ryan Jon Amey Henderson
Co-creator / Writer

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

"Like A Bastard Lover..." (Projects Galore and Opportunites)

A while has been since the blog was updated and seeing this slight artistic block I am fighting, I am keeping myself busy with a further post in the blog. I am also being asked to bring in some updates, especially since the blog header looks sweet on an iPad (or so I'm told).

To tell you the truth, there is very little I can add about updates on the TV series. It's in the same place it was when last I blogged on this, where we were making strong progress, some new scenes written and more granted it more shape, however, I don't want to divulge too much. The newest addition to The JOB in terms of visuals is the mock title sequence I completed after about 2 weeks of on / off filming around town. 

The general consensus is that it's too flashy and diverts too much from the realistic, hard-edged, deliberately rough feel of the project; personally, I'd keep the last 5 seconds of the sequence to have for the opening, with no music. Also, in the title sequence below, it has no music due to the "desired" track, lacking any permissions. An option that still stands to an artist who would like to come on board to create "that music".



Tell us what you think and if you have anything to add, please get in touch.

I have always seen this blog as looking on the variety of other things I have going on; The JOB is the one thing that has influenced me enough to continue working hard in this industry at a moment, about two years ago, I would have given up and done something else. I'll always respect the people who got me involved in this and after trawling through a number of old e-mails (when the project was in it's birth as Bourac) it reinvigorated my love for film and TV and opened new doors and I am lucky enough to still be working with those individuals now. It's led towards the teaser being shot after a year hiatus behind the camera and led to a music video and further offers.

It's entitled the The JOB for a reason; it's more about the job we play at just living than the vocation itself. We tend to be owned by our vocation (whatever that may be) if we allow it to and to be honest, I have made my choices so I will allow what I do to own me like a bastard lover. For me, "the job" is being a writer and the aspirations I have to create different things as a Director and being involved as a Cinematographer. That is what I want to do; always have, always will.

Working in Film and TV is my first love and I have always wanted to pursue the more outlandish ideas I have floating around in my head. However, from writing and from collaborating on a variety of things, it makes sense to cast that net wider than it already is; sitting on my desktop, waiting. 

Unrelated to this, about a couple of years ago (as I won't mention the companies in question as I respect the time I spent working with them and the great people I met), I was working with a guy who owns a company doing camera operating and we'd come into an agreement to create a series of shorts. The principle being, to create shorts that "ticked the boxes" really, from a directorial and visual stand-point. The model for the success of this, previous, a company had done the same thing, using well-known faces and premium talent to create a series of films and fire them into festivals. From then, the company got a name for itself and it's fate was sealed into International recognition. 

Now I don't have the clout to do "exactly" that but with my own kit and whoever I can get involved on a low-budget with quick turn-overs and dipping into the same repertory of actors. At the moment of going back to implementing this model into the present-day situation, I stumbled upon this document I made up. I blacked out the parts that are of non-importance, especially as so much has changed in the last two years.

Certainly, I can see, even in the small dark patch of indecision by the end of 200, the sentiment of the time is exactly the same. Bar the slightly big-headed nature of the text (which at the time can be cited as 'confidence' or an 'over' variation of that) it's more or less the same I'm feeling right now.

Let's be honest, I could do this incredibly privately. I could just look amongst the group of friends I have and make these films. What I have found is that my absolute honesty on here, works more in favour with getting these things made. I have to write lists. I have to write blogs. I have to write scripts. I have to storyboard everything. If I didn't it would just fade into nothing. Plus, if I never get it done, maybe someone else can. 

There are projects that aren't part of this principle. 




Firstly, there is Grout, mentioned in the previous post and Sòmh, a Gaelic inspired animation about a world in peril and the sole lonely man who is trapped there trying to fix it, desperate for a change or a release. The film has been storyboarded and I'm currently working on the backgrounds. This however, will not be shot in one to two days.

Below is a list of the projects that have been rattling about for the last couple of years, looking to be made: 

1) TROPHY; (Realist / Social Drama) A story set to a 90's backdrop about losing those last moments of innocence and realising you're no longer young, after a night of drunken debauchery marks the end of the groups leading into adulthood. It is a coming of age story, highlighting the specific moment in life, you realise the barriers you had as a child, no longer stand.

2) CLANCY-PANTS; (Realist / Thriller) A group of 80's punks go out on a day trip and after a violent exchange, one character has to make a choice that could seal the rest of his life. After being released from Prison, Tommy spends his day out in the country, to soak up his new freedom. After a horrendous accident,

3) THE DAY MY CLOCK STOPPED; (Horror / Zombie) A man fights with his inner demons after the breakdown of his happy home with his girlfriend. A film centered on the break-down of a happy home, with the couple's first purchase as a house warming, it is illustrated emotionally, when the man is overcome by "beasts" he had created in his own head.

4) BLEED; (Comedy / Drama) A cheating boyfriend wakes up one morning after sleeping around with a nosebleed. Any potential of reconciling with her are soon quashed by the ferocity of the bleed in question. 

5) PYRRHIC; (Sci-fi / Drama) Based on the final scene from Shakespeare's Macbeth, two men contemplate Mother Nature's victory over human kind, after the female companion of pair is found dead. Based on horrendous natural disasters, they highlight the "hidden war".

6) HEAD-TAP; (Sci-fi / Drama) A junkie hires a man he meets on the internet to try out a new drug, by drilling directly into the cerebral lobe. A film about desperation and addiction but in accepting that sometimes, the way to deal with addiction is to let go completely.

Just a small selection of the films I have in mind. I have a few projects, unlike these new ones, that are worthy of a re-boot but I feel this is enough to look towards for just now. To any actors or potential crews, you can contact me on here, which links to my e-mail. To see previous works I have done, you can go to my YouTube page.

Co-Creator
Ryan Jon Amey

Monday, 6 June 2011

"The Great Un-great" (GROUT)

A slight detour from focusing on The JOB here but as a segway from that, I wanted to concentrate on some other stuff that has been occupying the fragments of my mind. It's a simple case that, since beginning this project, it has influenced everything that I do.

The great un-great refers to the majority of the people that interest me in life. They're not heroes, probably not saviors, probably not liked in general, have no social standing, fucking piss against trees during the day and are genuinely forgettable but when you do remember them, they remind of how good have it and that you should be blessed to be alive. They interest me. Those people you would unhappily spit on if they were on fire, have lives, have homes, have families, have stories and should never be lacking in any sponging in empathy.

GROUT is a 10 minute long story that focuses on two people who have made a choice, one whole-heartedly and the other reluctantly, trapping themselves in their home, to escape the cruelty of the world outside. Ironically, the only cruelty they witness (an allegory on life in general) is what they reap on themselves. When we come to focus on the story, it is nearing the end of their stay as one is becoming more sick and the other is desperate to escape. What keeps her trapped is the prospect of going outside after so long and the stigma of what she is being reflected from the harsh mirror Society will hold up to her. Her only friend in this situation is a unemployed, secluded and deformed man, whose main intent is to rescue her. Think Brothers Grimm doing Scottish Social Realism and you're halfway there. 

I might take the route many have taken successfully; going down for a Kickstarter or an IndieGoGo
but I can see, with even my relatively limited production knowledge and experience of pitching (even in business), without a genuine sense of good story (character, arcs, drama) I will need to have a good enough hook for people to want to purchase a piece of it. It's a reluctant choice but a very attractive one.


£2000? £200? Maybe just £20? Fuck, whatever gets the thing made I suppose.

If anyone is interested you can contact me. I'll be looking at all the potential crewing soon enough, but really need someone to help with the Producing. Let's see where this takes us.

Ryan Jon Amey
Director / Co-creator


Wednesday, 1 June 2011

"... One Night In Shite's-Ville..." (What's Happening?)

It's been a while...

Doubt I can use the same excuses as before but the project breathes, continues to breathe and makes it's steps towards a fruition of sorts. There's very little to divulge in terms in where we are just now. We've all been busy on all our various projects and ventures, with the other writers working actors and myself, a filmmaker and illustrator there you'll find the majority of the new work I have been occupied with, mainly with Edinburgh-based band, The Marvels and the new comic I am illustrating, DOGS, a political (and personal) story about the creation and development of war machines.

The video links to both the Vimeo and Youtube.


We've hit a momentous two-year working relationship; myself and the two other principal writers, Ed Corrie and Adam McNamara and since the Home teaser debuted earlier in the year, the project has been well-received within our small circle. Ideally, I would want more interest in it, which is why, over the next month, in the run-up to preparing, crewing and developing two short films, The Hunted and Grout, that I will naturally be looking for help on, I have been working on some The JOB specific projects.





It's no-one's guess that this project is very close to my heart (our hearts), a project that has bite and stamina that showcases the best that Scotland has to offer; in talent, in location and in spirit, telling some genuine (stuff you've read all before).

The plan for now is a handful of different projects to maintain a level of scope and appeal, certainly on the video channels and within the inter-linking of this blog to create visual references to back-up the project as a whole.



Below is a small list of what we're thinking.

Firstly, at the moment of conception for the project, we had written a small blurb over what the opening title sequence would look and run like. It was a simple paragraph that outlined a sequence of night traffic, shot out of focus and layered over a sequence of shots (illustrated to the side) shot during the day, detailing the areas, the home life, the car interior and the reveal of The JOB (police). 

Littered around are some of the inspirations of the last few days, shot on a Canon XM-2. As the raw footage, these images go further than just becoming the backbone of the opening title sequence but for the potential of the coming short film projects for The JOB; AtoB and new project Runner, a super-short. 

  It's a case of continuing to work on the handful of different projects to support the writing with actual visual reference. Either way, here's hoping that we can continue these projects over the coming weeks. I am three days already into the opening title sequence and am hoping to continue with on the same scope.

Ryan Jon Amey
Director / Co-creator


Sunday, 27 February 2011

"Keeeeeee-en..." (A New Update, New Script, Teaser, Audience and other things...)

Its probably only been about 3 weeks since I put up the Home teaser but it feels like a life time ago I wrote into this blog so here goes... For the intrigued and interested; 

A complete re-writing of the pilot script is happening right now, hopefully or last draft which is very exciting. It's a script that, if it plays out the way we want it to, will be the statement we wanted from the very beginning. There's not much else to say about this without showing actual progress, which isn't happening as we'd rather just work on the scripts to be honest...

Home, The JOB teaser has gone down incredibly well. Not the torrent of interest we had initially thought, but as pockets of interest began to emerge we could see it begin to take shape. The general opinions all round was that we had made an unpretentious peek into what the series is fundamentally about, which is incredibly positive. A genuine audience has been generated from the pool of friends and family who have spoken out about it. If you haven't seen it already here:



The JOB - Home from Ryan Jon Amey on Vimeo.


The real audience for us rests within the sofa-biders who don't mind sitting up till 11 waiting for shows like Road Wars on Sky Living. Te blind audience whose loving for mind-numbing TV surpasses the common urge to sleep and sensibility that comes attached to that. Alternatively, it will be an audience that likes clicking ON-Demand and catching it later, I don't know. It's hard to hinge an audience with the major concern not being, everyone sitting down in the right place at the right time to catch the 60 minutes we present. That 60 minutes is only 60 minutes.


Now they can pause, they can change and come back to it later, watch it online whilst blogging and chatting on puss-book. In this age, shows and programming are still staple, just how an audience receives and uses them is slightly different. I suppose now, audience demand and expanded technology have developed in this world of movement and convenience to produce a consistent sense of quality over any platform. It would have been inconceivable to watch HD videos on your phone 10 years ago. 

But it is this need for demand that keeps producers and creatives busy but anxious. I find myself thinking sometimes, "we'll get swallowed by the machine and spat back out again a masticated mess". There is so much going on, our main concern has been with the writing and the quality of the writing. Overall, your average Joe Lightly or Susie Nobody won't give two shits about the technology, they want entertained, intrigued or fascinated by what they watch. It's easier for us to make the program and let the program project what audience we initially projected watch it and when and how. The power has always been with the audience and will continue to, for obvious reason...  

-


Below however, I go into a diatribe, although related more to audience, more on  personal level...


People say (and as a phrase in general, I hate non-specifics) but people say, "everyone has one book in them...". I agreed that as a human being who thinks continuously, we have limits to how long we can pursue certain aspects that make us what we are, whether it be in the creative sense or otherwise. I tally this in with the general population who find no interest in what we would call "creative" yet I would say that painting your kitchen or totting up numbers a sense of creativity even though it uses the other side of your brain etc. No sense in belittling folk.

Be all and end all of it is, I am reaching the limits of what I think I am possible of achieving. Unfortunately, I need to live, feel like I achieved some 'thing' then get on with it, comfortable in the mind I did all I could. If things pick up, you never know, I might change my opinion on things.

I seem to have come a long way from the utterly blindly passionate film student of 6 years passed, whose love and respect for 'cinema' surpassed his arrogance and dedication to creating a singular vision only 'one' could tell, a view I don't uphold now. It is still respected, yes, inspired, yes, but all in the context that I would rather cater stories that are perfected for dramatic intensity to interest an audience.


I have picked my projects very carefully over the last couple of years, working around The JOB, that has been the primary concern which has real legs and has had well before the shooting of the teaser and has a personal aspect close to me and the rest of the writers that means there is more to it than just becoming "another TV show about coppers".

Since the turn of the year, I have concentrated on a couple of short projects, including whatever contractual obligations I still hold with bands for music videos and promos, but these projects hold the thematic concerns I have held onto since I started producing films since 2003. This does not include AtoB, The JOB short film, which comes under the banner or the overall project so doesn't really count with the projects outwith that. 

I have limited myself to help me produce them in a space of time and if they remain to be the last projects I ever make, then it's fine, I did what I set to achieve:

GROUT and Enders, which I have only referred to as a damning indightment of everything I have experienced thus far since returning to Edinburgh. A auto-biographical surrealist tale about my experiences since I returned home, taking the shape of an odd coming-of-age story: "Woulda' called it 'wankers' but seemed too literal a title" (in the comedic sense). More to come on these projects eventually, more in the form of art-work firstly: www.sayzoart.blogspot.com


-


We want The JOB to do well. I want The JOB to do well. I've spent too long on the scripts and the materials to not have at least looked at making the pilot in my lifetime, more for the fact that people are interested in seeing it. I want to do it, more than ever, to show people that we did. That could be 20 people or 20,000, I don't care, the fundamental basis of what we had for ourselves has now been, what do an audience want to see? 


Director / Co-Creator
Ryan Jon Amey

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

"I Didn't Join The JOB For This..." ('Home' Teaser)

The JOB - Home from Ryan Jon Amey on Vimeo.
 

© Ryan Jon Amey, The JOB, saYzo films, Jan 2011 


Cast and Crew

Starring Adam McNamara and Jenny Hulse, with the voice of Darran Lightbody

Director Ryan Jon Amey

Writers Adam McNamara and Ryan Jon Amey

Camera Operator Hamish Robb

Editor Omar Pookhan

Editing Consultant Steven Jalicy

Advisers and Additional Help Ed Corrie and Darran Lightbody


The final online publication of the teaser Home completed early this year for The JOB. Please rate and comment following the Vimeo link. 

I would like to thank everyone involved and in particular, Adam McIllwaine of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama for providing us with kit and support and special thanks to Jim for providing the blue lamp.


Ryan Jon Amey
Director / Co-creator

Monday, 24 January 2011

"I'm Still Breathing... But Thanks." (The Re-working of the Scripts and AtoB)

And so begins a period of ill-communication, but for very good reason...

Over the last few days there has been a heavy amount of planning over the project, with the due dates for the script work shopping being brought forward from March to now until it's completion. The permanent establishment of Glasgow becoming my home once again in the midst of this sudden spurt of work over the next couple of months will rear as an event this eventuality so this marks what will be the last of the big updates until we finish what is to be the short film. 

The biggest development has been in the progress in The JOB short film, entitled AtoB, an off-shoot from the stories of the TV series. It's a simple story set in Glasgow, inspired by the time after I finished University which was mostly documented with photos whilst I spent most of that time alone. The process of the short, transposing the key elements of the series into a succinct short film with a twist, convincing and genuine characters set to a contemporary soundtrack. An urban tale of the good of this world and who witness it's horrors. Thematically, it sticks very close to what we are exploring with The JOB.

The film is hoping to shoot in March, with the second draft of the script going through a brief motion of evaluation and approval. Once a decision has been reached, the planning will begin. This will the next big project I have written and directed since the viral and first short film of mine of 2011. I'm excited to get cracking on this, create what I feel are interesting and vibrant visuals with a real sense of capturing the realism that has inspired me from the beginnings of this project through my love of Social cinema, Neo-realism and particularly, the cinema of John Cassavetes. If anything, I want a showcase for a film that, part of this bigger series, that shows what we are capable of and what we still have to show.

















© Ryan Jon Amey, The JOB, AtoB Concept


So anyway, I thank everyone for the support that has been shown since the beginning of this project, as it has been the people who have shown such interest in wanting to see this come to fruition that have spurned us to carry this on. 

Up until March and we'll have more show, including the eventual publication of Home, now complete and showing very strong interest all-round. 


Ryan Jon Amey
(Director / Co-Creator)

Saturday, 15 January 2011

"The Beast Begins To Breath..." (A Belated New Year and What's to Follow)

Belated happy returns for the turning of the New Year and what is now being called "year of The JOB". Read whatever potential but completely unintentional religious connotation into that "speech-marked beauty" but it couldn't really be any truer. I think in more specific terms, it will be and has to be "true". 

The project is in a constant state of change, of evolutions, developments and continuous motions of elevated and deflated emotions. A project that, within itself, is a statement on the world I see around me. A friend of mine said "what we see and what we hear does mean we experience what we see and what we hear". But what is happening is that we have been talking a lot about The JOB but have you really seen anything yet? Bar the posters, the quick releases of the teaser for "Home" and the Facebook status updates, I would say, you have seen very little of what The JOB has to offer.

But one thing stands to debate; it's bite is about as profound as it's bark

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I have always seen these small things as the injections of the project; the little things that keep it alive. 


"Home", the viral we finished shooting last year, which was held up due to various technical and logistical issues come the end of the year is nearing completion (now) for publication end of January and with it's new titles, score and temp. pre-dubbed soundtrack, it's in a good place for a final release this month, with a potential temp. opinion release of as soon as next week. 

The off-shoot of this viral, specifically as much as it had excited the FUCK out of everyone at JOB HQ and really got the blood flowing within the creative group, it had shown one thing; the beast began to breath. We had decided on a further viral including the prospective cast which would be secured some mid-April entitled "Club" which has been put back due to the coming of "A to B", which has cropped up in the last week of so.   

"A to B", simply put, is The JOB short film. A condensed and easily digestible 5-minute short detailing a simple story set to a strong theme, shot in the style we have chosen for the series and showing off everyone's skills in cast and crew, acting much like a sizzler-reel; although dissimilar as it's not a collection of images / moments from a larger piece. This is looking to be shot come the Spring with a first draft already compiled and cast more or less secure. I'm hoping it's as diverse and as exciting as what we've written and I am genuinely looking forward to this. More of that to come in the coming months. 


But all this is secular to what is the actual goal; shooting the 'A- Shift' series' pilot. 

-

"Bourac", The JOB pilot is still looking to begin this year, however at this current juncture, at a creatively slow snail's pace, it has been injected with the promise of a strong cast, a visually dynamic and provocative cinematic quality hinged by an absolute passion to see it through to conclusion. I think the issue I might have with it is, after we begin I won't be able to stop until it's done. It's going to be a journey, long, hard, difficult, potentially self-destructive and exhausting but I've never known a single director who has not sacrificed something for the potential of what they wanted to say. I'm not a crash-test dummy, The JOB is not a car and we're not hitting brick walls but what I am trying to say is that I'll get this made; we'll get this made.

The script is strong; a real insight into a world we all know about and experience but would never associate specifically, but I am feeling (and always have since the birth of the beast) it's made it feel more human. But like we've always said, it's been the tag for the last two years:
















© Ryan Jon Amey, The JOB, Home Viral

Maybe you'll just find out.


Ryan Jon Amey
(Director / Co-Creator)

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

"Think You Know The Police?" ("Home" Viral Teaser, The Completion Of 'A' Shift Scripts and End Of The Year)

The be-all, end-all of this last portion of the November month, we've been busy... Very busy.


(c) The Job, Ryan Jon Amey. All Rights Reserved

"Home", the first in a series of viral adverts to be shot for the series, was completed over the weekend awaiting some eventual tweaks. The image is a teaser for the eventual published release of the trailer, hopefully come start-December. By this point, we are hoping to move onto one other viral entitled "Club", stylisitcally similar (dark visuals, dynamic flowing camera-work) but importantly, including what we would refer to as our 'considered' final cast. 



The whole series, our tag as it were refers to "Think You Know The Police?". With cop drama in general, the focus within the genre has been to concentrate on the job; what it's like to be a cop. Our focus subverst that common conception by looking at 'real' people who are cops. I think as a tag, it's a big slap in the face; like what you know thus far does not tell the whole picture. 




What we want, is to invite you to see more of the picture, whilst maintaining a profound sense of realism matched with a dramatic sense generated from the realism.


The Job: 'A' Shift, the initial first series, is looking at a completion within the script stage, for end of the year; to follow a series of workshops with the principal writing team, and our producer and myself as director going through each of the episodes to get the best possible drafts we can muster. I reckon this is a process, very much like our initial read-through from the feature draft of the script, that will highly enjoyable.

Now that time remains short and the end of the year approaches, we've decided to bat out as much footage for The Job as physically and as mentally possible for us. 


The time for us to do this now and with as much attention as we've had since we started this project 18 months ago, this could slowly be the time, with every single one of us involved, to make some daring and important decisions.

Certainly, from my own point of view, the time is now to prove what we all have to offer and thus far, it's looking pretty tremendous.

Thanks and keep showing your support.

Ryan Jon Amey
Director / Co-Writer

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

"I'm sure if I wanna' go, I'll find the door, cheers" (Development Hits It's First Year, The First Internet Viral and the Completion of Ep's 3 & 4)

The first new update in a while but well worth at this stage, some sort of clarification and excitement.

The Job has been going through a very real moment of drive. Before, we could always be comfortable in the fact that we were working to our own deadlines which never seemed to be a massive problemhowever, with a certain deadline looming, now has been the test of whether or not we can do this, organise it within a small period of time and have something that had a clarity and professionalism of an established production company.

Since the announcement that we would only have till the the 22nd to complete the first internet viral, Home, the week has been complete madness. The initial comfort in knowing that we would come out of this week with a final moving, emotional portrait that illustrates the essence of what The Job is created a massive buzz within the group. A real sense of excitement that things are moving forward. Obviously, once we've completed the advert, you'll be able to find the link to it once we feel it's ready for the dispersion into the cyberspace.

This is more so it doesn't get lost and is able to pinpoint an audience. Our research has always pointed towards a market for this kind of programming, a real interest in genuine drama; real characters, real worlds and a focus on an aspect of cop life we have never seen before. Audience is everything with TV, as with film also, but without a tapped audience. In specifics, a target audience that can catapult this drama, be interested in thisa drama and want to see this drama.

We have been following the Channel 4 documentary series Coppers. A perfect template that tells more about "the job" and the people who have to deal with it everyday than 100 hours of conversations of back stories. It illustrates perfectly, the attitude, the people, the humanistic aspects and the very essence of what we started over a year ago, yet set in Scotland. What we want to see is what happens when they get home, how their relationships are affected and what they become when they are, essentially, off duty. That is what The Job does.

So, we have the viral coming up end of this week, the completion of the final two episodes before the end of the year and whatever else we have in the pipeline before anything else changes really.

It's all very exciting. I hope you like what we're doing.

Director / Co-Writer
Ryan Henderson

Thursday, 7 October 2010

"Future? Fucked if I know what today holds..." (The Future Of The Job)

There was always a profound sense of what we wanted to achieve with The Job. Did we want to go as far as The Wire had done and focus on the criminals and the politicl side of society that creates a rounded and highly perceptive aspect of human life. It is hard at this early stage to pin down where this project will go eventually, as it is yet to, even with it's profund amount of interest, gone anywhere yet. That's not to say that is won't.

The dream aspect of doing this project is that it receives funding. We all have our own space in which to plan production and we are able to work on the project full time. The only other thing was to work on the project over a long period of time with whatever funding we had at our disposal, working within our own homes, whatever locations we could muster; a genuine peice of independent programme making. From the inital episodes we have written, a total of four for the first series, the development of the project would be in it's long life, introducing the different shifts.

The dream, as it will be called from on, is to walk into HMV one day and see The Job box-set, collecting A, B, C and D shifts, with the two one- off specials we have planned; the Christmas episode and the more mad-cap, surreal episode I have planned around my own view of criminals, neds, whatever you want to call them, however, I hate using the word neds.

With the case being close to completing the final two episodes of series 1, the progression has to spurn the further second shift, leading into the third and so on. I can honestly say, we're not going to be short of ideas for this.

Director / Co-Writer
Ryan Jon Amey

Monday, 20 September 2010

"... Now you realise, why it didnae work together eh?" (Marriage of Montage with Old-fashioned Storytelling)

I watched a film the other day (the name of which escapes me), where the for the first 5 minutes of the film I couldn't tell who I was rotting for in the story. I was blaming myself and thinking "I'm 25, things a re slowing down, I was never smart to begin with etc. etc." but then suddenly realised a number of things; the camera wouldn't stay still long enough for me to even focus my eyes on anything.

Apart from me resisting the urge to care for any character who I did finally focus on, the inherant boredom that proceeded completely killed it, stone dead, purely because there was no focus, the camera operator couldn't find a frame and the director couldn't peice together the story. Just an utter shambles. I'm saying this as an audience member and not a filmmaker. I know like anyone else, how hard the process is so the fact it was even in a cinema is achievement enough.

It brings up the whole cutting / time argument which I always found interesting and the advent of less structured cinematography.

The dawn of the MTV generation in the 90's, married with the forever dwindling attention spans of audiences in the last decade, has spawned a kind of overstylised kind of montage and imagery that attracts your attention by keeping your brain occupied by the speed of it as opposed to the clarity of what it is actually saying. You can conjure up notable directors like Michael Bay (although I quite like his films; The Rock, awesome) whose (5) second a cut has seen him hit billion dollar turnover's at the box office, yet very little critical  acclaim, which sometimes doesn't really matter when the money begins to roll into the pot. Music video sylings that erupt in a (2) minute video, maybe not tolerated so much in the course of a (2) hour film. I look at films like The Battle of Algiers or A Bout De Soufle or Shadows or The French Connection moving towards Traffic, when I refer to the slightly less structured sense of cinematography where the camera provides the sense of one watching events unfold as opposed to being structured for a significant dramatic effect, much how events unfold in reality. The camera holds a balettic sense of capturing the action to a tee, perfectly and within the confines of time within a single take. I look at Godard's Weekend or Altman's Short Cuts. The mark of a directors true talents unmasked and unhinged within the terrifying confines of a single take.  

It's the balance between style over storytelling. When the style dictates your storytelling and gets in the way of providing the audience with the information they need in order to engage with the story, is when you fundamentally turn the medium into video art, as opposed to entertainment. Controversially, contradicting my own filmic aesthetic, I would rather strive for the balance, something lovely to look at, which only cuts when it needs to or for effect, that tells a fascinating and engaging story.  

Engaging story is where it lies. It dictates everything. Dictates what you shoot, how you shoot and how decisions are made to visually advance the story so there is universal understanding from an audience. I guess, with The Job, what we have is story; just simple non-contrived story.

I am reaching the close date when I finished the orginal 100-page script end of last year, when the title was still working, there was four writers on the roster and everything got very exciting for us.

Only now, things are even more exciting, the number of people interested is increasing and you suddenly feel that what your doing is worth the years you will be spending on it.

I can only speak for myself but if people keep wanting it, I'll make sure it happens.

Ryan Jon Amey
(Director / Co-Writer)

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

"... Cannae Mind..." (Memory Over Imagery: Signatures)

I instantly think John Ford's The Searchers, Wayne framed within the door, a mere silhouette, a shadow of himself. Harry Lime sneaking out of the shadows in Carol Reed's The Third Man. Al Pacino staring down DeNiro in that cafe' scene in Heat. Chow-Yun Fat sliding a bannister in Woo's Hard Boiled. Chihiro on the train with no-face in Spirited Away. Timophy Spall letting go in Secrets and Lies. Book with Samual before he leaves the farm in Witness. Clooney with J-Lo, a snow ladden restaurant in Out Of Sight. Mifune pacing the town in Yojimbo. John Voight falling in love in Coming Home. Hackman as Doyle wanting to kick someone's ass in The French Connection. Wong-Kar Wai's Chungking Express. Patricia Arquette on a thunderbird's hood in Tony Scott's True Romance. Swatting up on your favourite sins in Fincher's Se7en. Coltraine gunning down Carlyle in a battle of minds in Cracker: To Be A Somebody....

A whole manner of cliche' book cover answers, but single frames that transcend decades of debate, analysis and influence and inspiration that I remember anyhow. Missing thousands of signature frames; a single image that epitomises a moment, from Citizen Kane, The Godfather, Seventh Seal, Drugstore Cowboy, Breakfast Club etc. etc.  

Images that tell stories and marry together to produce a reaction. In imagery, it is all about providing 'information'. Through the tools we use, whether is be a super 35mm arriflex camera or a DV-50, fill it in with diffed 300w or whack a 4 bank kinoflo on a stand, the principal is the exact same. We are providing as much information as we possibly can. Only in those magical moments, do we get the marriage right. I've strived for a time in the films I have made to produce frames that epitomise a moment, certainly within the constructs of the filmic structure. These are the frames that illicit a particular response, different from the manner of closes to wide converage we're all used to. I may be plucking this from the air, without much grounding, possibly slightly patronising to the number of people already practising film but I can count a number of times having to remind filmmakers, film is a 'visual' medium, with a whole manner of freedom and exploration to define a process, however mechanical, with an emotional stamp.

In the writing stages of this project I have been detached from making decisions towards the visual aspects of the project. The scripts themselves have a strong visual sense of storytelling, although structurally strong with a meanderring quality of realism. From it's beginnings I had already mapped signature frames that define the stortytelling, tell the story through images instead of ladelled through lacking intracies. This is why I think, dedicating years of our lives to something, would we not want something that felt like it had some thought put into it? With The Job, I'm covering every base so we can illicit those responses.

More to the point...

The Job: "Auld Cloutie" (Ep.3) is currently being written, initially mapped from the 100-page feature script I had completed almost a year before, this is the story of Ian and at the halfway point in the series, where things get incredibly bleak for our characters. At a stretch I am living with these guys, 10-12 hours a day, writing their lives into further complexity or, in some case, writing them away. Although more on that when we get to Ep. 5. We're essentially halfway through with the writing and so the marathon continues.

But thanks for the support thus far and stay put, things are about to get better.

Ryan Jon Amey
(Director / Co-Writer)

Monday, 30 August 2010

"As it Stands..." (An outlook on 21st Century Visuals and referring to Neo-Reailsm)

Continueing with the concept that would be a bi-weekly added blog, The Job, episode 1: Bourac has reached a working draft level, as of a week ago, with a reknowned positivity beyond what we could wanted or even realised.

Currently, I am working on the next 3 episodes independently as one continuous story as, with the concept and expert writing of The Wire, moments that are not focused on detail in some scenes are revisited in greater detail later on. A literary exploration that should go farther than dictating legislation or flaws within that legislation.
   
For example, the liklihood of several "crime scenes" only really boil down to one or two when all the elements are in place. A sense of contrast that depicts many aspects of life. Old and new. Life and death. Beginnings and endings. Everything will feel understated as some moments are never fulfilled to their summary conclusion, as in life, everything is on-going long after you stop watching, like an alternate reality pictured within the confines of a 3464 X 2310 (referring to information in relation to size) window at which we can shut the blinds on you at any times. What we can't see doesn't mean it does not carry on.

Much like Visconti's La Terra Trema, and many other Realist films of the Post-War era, the definition of realism was showing the moments that say, Hitchcock, would remove. I'm not saying we are likely to include an Italian maid washing a floor for 20 minutes, but the concept of retaining images that would more or less be removed for pacing purposes, remain in one form or another. With the luxury of a long running series, whose to say our characterisation needs to be exacting and precise. One thing about each of our lives is that it gets boring and banal sometimes. We struggle for some sort of acitvity to keep our minds occupied but more importantly, to keep us feeling alive, hence we struggle with pattern and monotony. We may be of the MTV generation but I reckon dulling audiences with fast-cutting, overgraded visuals, moves nothing forward. The power of TV is intense and exact, the gimmicks of tabloid TV aside, cinema has become a fairground ride, the best of films sneaking away into the darkness of tiny cinema screens, someone's had-graft, blood, tears and sleepless nights little recognised personal picture, to maybe be remembered. But with all good, it it usually only appreciated to it's potential long after the artist has passed from this world.


Stylistically, we will be following the general rule that story dictates everything, whilst the visuals should compliment the telling of the story. Nothing flashy, nothing too over-the-top, just simple understated storytelling with interesting, true to life (as the stories remain true themselves), characters, hinting at aspects of Scottish culture, scenary, beauty and ultimately, humanity and morality. Universally understood factors that transcend outwith the boundaries of our culture alone. Something that can be spoken out to many and understood fully by a few.

Director / Co-Writer
Ryan Jon Amey

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

"... Right, now here's the situation..."

The project has been on-going for the last year in script development, from the inspirations of the main contributing writers; Adam as an ex-copper and actor, myself as a filmmaker and the two other contributing writer-actors Ed Corrie and Darren Lightbody.
Inspired by American shows like The Wire, Cracker, The Shield, many other cop genre films and the unrealistic perception of the British police force from say, The Bill, we had wanted to produce something that changed that perception that we could all be a part of. We wanted a series about people who were cops; a series about cops without an emphasis on the dredgery of the crime.

The script had gone through an intense overhaul before the end of the year ending as a feature film draft at 100-pages long. Recently, we had held an actor read-through at our old University, The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow, of the current first draft to see how the script played out initially in its first stages which proved to be a massive success. From there we had collectively decided to go back to the original model of making it a 5-part TV serial. Now the project is being re-drafted with an eventual script date of mid-August for the first episode (pilot) with the remaining episodes being written in conjunction.

In the pipeline, whilst we concentrate on the writing, I have planned a number of adverts in the form of virals. The first as two cheap virals to be played online to gather interest and the second, a high-production value teaser trailer to illustrate the mood, tone and essence of the project.

The second ad has been dubbed the “Red-Tape” trailer that shows two plain-clothed officers waiting on a man let off on a DTO (drug treatment order) by the Judge.... The remainder of the trailer plays out with a final tagline that reads, “Think you know the police?”. The advert has been storyboarded and looking for a shoot date of end of September.

We are hoping to shoot on RED ONE; a format I have had previous experience with as a DoP and Director. In addition, there is a selection of photographers who are willing to come on board to shoot some initial promotional material and possibly some on-set photography at a later date. Also, a friend of mine, who writes for a Scottish film website, is wanting to do a piece on The Job for some added small publicity, once we have shot the trailer. In the mean time, I have produced paintings and drawings to conjure up the various cinematic frames that will signify The Job, like the image posted below.

We have been excited about this for a while and with the added encouragement of the people around us, we are determined to make this happen and do it extremely well. More than not, this project will be self-funded so we can attain the creative freedom we started with on this project, knowing fine well that particular high-powered involvement could bring the project to a place neither want to be or taken from us comepletely. Although skeptical, we can't ignore the the fact that things like that can happen but overall, we are working within an industry that should welcome projects like this.

At the end of the day we are hoping for something we are ultimately proud of but, as the main goal, have a product that can be sold, screened / televised and developed further as well as furthering our own careers in our chosen fields.
Keep yourself posted on the various updates that will spring on here. Most obvious one being, from today, that episode 1 "Bourac" has been fully written, with the remaining 4 episodes in first draft, hopefully, by the end of September.

Anyway, thanks again,

Ryan Henderson
Director / Co-Writer

Monday, 9 August 2010

"... the job's fucked..."

Welcome to The Job, an up and coming 5-part TV drama serial, looking to go into production mid-next year.

Real people, real stories but hardly any crime. Think of a drab realist Scottish drama, forget about The Bill, look at how people talk (the banter), realise that everything we're containing in this serial is true and inject it with a pace and energy matching that of an American TV series, to a soundtrack of break beats and down-tempo, humming to a style of Michael Mann and the Maysles Bros.

The brainchild of four people, our desire is to create something real, exiting, true and eventually established that we can ultimately be proud of but hopefully, entertains the fuck out of everyone.

Whether you've just stumbled on this or you've seen the Facebook group (http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/group.php?gid=247660129577&ref=mf) and wandered further down this rabbit hole, if you like the sound of it, stay tuned. The majority of the updates will appear on here first, including artwork, concept design, stills, recce's, trailers and more...

In the pipeline we have two viral adverts, a full trailer and promotional stills planned for the August / September period in conjunction with the continued development of the script. Anyone's interest should come directly to me either through here or by the Facebook group.  

Thanks for the, hopefully, continuing support.

Ryan Henderson
Director / Co-Writer