The screening in Echo Park was great and we’re two-for-two so far in L.A. We went down to the screening with Laura Blanco, our other gracious host, and met up with a chunk of buddies. Chepo and Harvey Sid Fisher were there, Austin expatriates Valerie Aiello and Barron Gunter were there, not to mention our new friends, Cynthia, Julio and many others. The crowd seemed to really like the movie, even to the point of a guy who looked a hell of a lot like Sweet Tooth walking up with his girlfriend afterwards and both of them telling me it was awesome. We were very pleased with the crowd’s reaction. I was pleased with their reaction to me, in particular. Later on, we went out to The Drawing Room and drank the night away.
Fuck. L.A. has been nice to us. Even the cops weren’t too dickish. The USC screening was kick ass and was packed almost entirely with strangers: students still in town for the summer, old farts who pack into free screenings, local freaks from the ghettos that surround the campus, etc. And they still loved the flick. That was nice.
Tonight, we screened at Echo Park Film Center. EPFC is a home-made looking film group that screens films, teaches classes and is totally badass. It reminds me of the old days of the Austin Cinemaker Co-op. Back when I was shooting a shitload of Super 8, the Cinemaker was a home base for a group of filmmakers and we had fun screenings and taught classes as well. So EPFC felt like home to me. On top of that, Eve, who runs the joint, was super-cool.
Aside from a few friends, this screening was packed with strangers. And the flick went over swell here too. In fact, the vibe was killer and the energy was ramped-up. Another notch in our el lay belt.
Julian Nitzberg, the filmmaker behind The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia (the doc about the crazy hicks in the Jesco White clan) came out and was digging some Total Badass action. We stood around and shot the bull for a bit. I have yet to see his doc, but it looks nuts. Another filmmaker and old Austin pal, Jay Duplass came out. Unfortunately, I told him the wrong time and he was there an hour early. Either way, go see his little movie called Cyrus. He can use all the help he can get. And it’s funny as fuck.
Ex-Austinite Baron Gunter apparently came out just to make sure the movie sucked. He needed to know that we were shit and that the movie was shit. He dropped five bucks to see with his own eyes that we were wasting his time and dragging the good name of Austin through the mud. But after the flick, he was sold. He fucking loved it and showered us with praise and even invited us to a motorcycle party chock full of babes in school girl uniforms. It was funny and refreshing to hear him admit that he came out to hate and he desperately wanted to hate the flick and us for making it. But once he saw it, was on board as a fan. Fuck yeah.
Earlier in the day, a friend who is a friend with one of the South Park boys had me swing by some DVDs of Total Badass and the cartoons I make called CrashToons (see them here: http://www.CrashToons.com). So I dumped some DVDs on Ted the intern. If you are a friend of the South Park boys, please make them watch my shit. So to speak.
After that, I ate some chow at Pho 86 in Chinatown, saw this cactus: