Thursday, November 19, 2009

Second fundraiser, Nov 27th!!

Me, my Mom & a Whistle's second fundraiser is Friday, Nov 27th at The Cajun Attic (349 Dahousie St, Ottawa)after 9pm. Advance tickets are only $5!!
NOTE: only the advance sales go towards the film, the door goes to the bar! So find me or Lisa and buy in advance.

The fantabulous Pat Patenaude will be performing again with his mix of Celtic/ Irish inspired drinking songs. He was a crowd fave at the last fundraiser as our closing act.

The last fundraiser at Busters Bar & Grill on Carling raised about $1500, and saw some very happy winners, including Corey Bombay who won tickets to a Sens game!

Sponsors of our last fundraiser included Beau's Beer, Absolute Comedy & Morrighan Films. Stay tuned to see who sponsors this one.

Dwayne Desveaux and his beautiful lady Jodi won tickets to Absolute Comedy!!

Future fundraisers are on the go for the new year!!

Monday, September 14, 2009


We're having a fundraiser to support local independent film!
September 22nd, 8pm to closing, @ Busters Bar&Grill, 2525 Carling Ave in Ottawa.
Only $10 at the door gets you a live show! Three different bands, from Irish drinking songs to Electronic rock, to hard edged and golden oldies! Plus raffles for Sens tickets, and prize packages from Beau's All Natural beer and Absolute Comedy.

Come early! Come often! Bring your friends!!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

We're getting close!

Well, we should be 2 weeks to principal photography, but it looks like it'll be pushed back due to scheduling conflicts. That's ok, gives me more time for fundraising!

We have several wonderful companies on board as corporate sponsors now. They're offering everything from free locations to deep discounts on essential services. They include Beau's All Natural Brewing (, Umi Cafe (, the Highlander Pub ( and others I'm still waiting for an approved agreement from. Pay these folks back for their generous support of indie film, EAT OR DRINK there! And mention why, show them that film involvement is a great way to build their business.

We're looking at having a couple of fundraising parties; one at a popular sports bar with live music, one at a comedy club! You'll want to go to both of these events, as there'll be prizes and such in the offing.

We're planning much more than just a film; we're doing a behind the scenes mini-doc, a CD of the soundtrack music, and several music videos with the fabulous bands involved in the film. You'll definitely get your money's worth on this DVD.

Now all we need is the last bit of money. We're taking donations (what's beneath your couch cushions is fine) at, of course, we'll take more than pocket change too. We're not too proud!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

You can actively support local Film-makers

Now it's easy to get involved in supporting local film-makers!

Thanks to Jith Paul, we have a quick link to donate to the film Me, my Mom, and a Whistle.

Now that emerging artists and small independents are competing for the same dwindling pool of government funding monies as Atom Egoyen, Norman Jewison, and David Cronenberg, we've decided to OPT OUT of the traditional funding model.

We're looking for cash donations from people who believe in independent film. While we're hoping to get $20+ per person, we'll take whatever you can find in your couch cushions! I figured that if everyone on the friends lists of the cast & crew donated $20 each, we could make this film, AND PAY EVERYBODY!

If we get enough, we'll reward thhe people who were so kind and supportive with a party & a screening!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

cash flow sheets and fund raising

I'm sitting in an empty office, in the rain, coffeeless.... sigh.

Who knew such a collaborative venture as film-making could be so lonely?

And I've sprained my brain on cash flow spreadsheets, and still can't find the missing $10k. Precisely $10,000. You'd think it would stand out.
But I've compared the budget and the spreadsheet until my head hurts, and nothing. It's probably in a formula somewhere.... sigh.....

At least I have proof positive that there is a "math center" in your brain. It's on the top, just to the right of the Brocha divide, and just where the top of your head starts to slope back into the back of your head. Ouch.

In the meantime, I may have a couple of new product placement deals, some cash investment, and a star. Things just keep getting better!

The previous post....

was meant to go in my homesteading blog ( and not here. Sorry for the confusion, but Me, my Mom, & a Whistle has no chickens in it. But it does have a chick or two, human ones.... sorry, bad pun.
I'll post something decent soon, I promise.

Friday, June 19, 2009

the 12 hour auditions over, now the hard part....

So, we had the call backs-chemistry test yesterday. 12 hours + 30 actors = few decisions. Sigh.....

It's an odd complaint, but so many of the actors were so good that we still haven't narrowed it down much. Some people did better than they did at their last audition, some did worse. A couple of choices seemed obvious, and we have first and second choices for several roles, but the leads are still wide open.

While the director was down from Toronto, we made a few other decisions as well; such as how far I can go to negotiate a deal before having to check with the other producers, how much I can "give away" to get the film made, and which distributor/ marketing firm we're interested in going with.

So, a good day. And a good place to take a weekend off, if you call planting tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, & many other veggies to be a day off!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Final auditions! (I hope)

So, the "final" auditions are tomorrow. My back is nervous, another 10 hours standing up filming auditions. At least I've been there often enough to find that jewel of a restaurant; cheap, but oh so good. It's a greek hole-in-the-wall place by the Parkdale Mkt. $7 buys a chicken pita, greek salad, and pop.

As for the auditions, it was really hard to whittle it down to a maximum of four contenders for each role. While some choices (to keep or let go) were obvious, some were really agonized over.

But it should be fun, and as we're testing for chemistry between the leads, it could be surprising.

While we may not have decided on yeses yet, those unfortunate enough not to be chosen, should be getting their no's next week.

The book rises again....

So, I finally heard from the publisher (they've had it for 50 weeks!) and they apologized for the delay. Gotta love British understatement. LOL

So, they love the story, they love the characters, they love the 'voice'. They hate the ending. :(

But, at least they're willing to work with me on it, in the fall. (next time we're both free to take on more work). So, I'm still on "the list" for Cutting Edge Books, and still listed on (under a pen name)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Audition Day 2: the dark comedy

So, while the auditions themselves were fabulous, the day started out as a nightmare... or a comedy, depending on perspective.

It started at 6am, it was cold, damp, dark.... shit, the power's off! No furnace to take the damp and chill off. Also no, shower, no brushing teeth, no flushing toilets, and OMG.... no coffee!!

"NO problem", says the director (who's staying in my guestroom. "We'll just leave early and stop at Tim Hortons on the way into town"! (Did I mention award nominated director? I really want him to be impressed with me and my professionalism.)

So, we head out into the pouring rain to race to Timmies. The local one has big bathrooms, we can wash our faces and brush our teeth! But the overnight rain has made the director's car sink ankle deep into the muddy yard. We're stuck.

No problem, there's three of us, two to push, one to steer. But no go. No move. Lots of mud on my leather trenchcoat, hands, and glasses though.

Called CAA. Wait for an hour, so much for leavng early and stopping at Timmies. Now we're calling people to tell them we'll be late, please wait for us. Standing outside the locked office, in the way, in the rain.... Should make for very happy to see us actors!

Tow truck arrives.... except, it's not a tow truck. It's a great huge flat-bed truck, trying to back into my driveway beside 2 cars (one stuck, one without keys) and a truck (also no keys at the house).

So, the truck backs onto the yard to reach the stuck car. The truck is much heavier than the car and... (can you see t coming?)... gets stuck in the mud.

So, we were lucky that the truck cab wasn't on the grass and was able to pull the back end out of the mud. But to do that, he had to move the truck so that it was directly crossing the street, blocking traffic in both directions.

This was unsafe, so he turned and backed up, and moved forward until he had most of the truck parked along the verge and the hind end in the driveway. Two problems, 1) the chain is too short to reach the car, and 2) he took out my mailbox! My poor battered and bruised mailbox is now firmly stuck under the truck, with its cement filled (200lb) milk jug wedged between the front and back wheels.

So, we drag it out, find extra chain to attach to the tow truck and eventually drag the car out to the nice, firm, hard-packed driveway. Without holding up too many cars as the truck is now at 90 degrees to the road. Again.

Then there was the small mix-up where the driver thought we were using my CAA card (because its my house) not the director's CAA card (because its his car) and got a bit testy about non-listed cars.

But everything was eventually cleared up and we were on our way, only an hour late, still no faces washed or teeth brushed or time to stop for coffee!

But fortunately, there was a coffee pot at the office, and eager actors to run and buy us breakfast while we made ourselves human in the office washrooms.

We also got caught up quite quickly, and saw some amazing auditions. So, all's well that ends well. Right?

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Busy last 2 weeks!

Well, I was reallyreally busy the last 2 weeks! We held auditions for Me, my Mom & a Whistle on the 20th and 21st. SEVENTY people showed up, making for two 15 hour days! I was astonished by how amazing some of the actors were. Non-union, practically unknown, and just freaking brilliant. This will lead to some very hard decisions!

Then I had to prepare and submit two applications for funding to make music videos by the 23rd. I'm producing music videos for two local bands "naked i" and "Mo Sayk", as a way of raising seed money for the film.
I'm also looking for 3-4 bands for the June 11th deadline, as we'd like to do as many as possible before we start principal photography on the film.

We are now about four months away and I NEED to get funding happening! I'm doing up a budget based on deferrels, but that'll entail a whole new repayment schedule. A woman's work is never done. Anybody have any money they don't need? Any at all? Anyone need a business loss for tax purposes? You can carry forward prior year earnings to cover it and lower your previous taxes. (at least I think you can. you used to be able to)

Then there's this week's deadline. Tomorrow I have a development application for CJOH to get a little money to write my next film. Or one of my next films.

Friday is also the deadline to notify the NFB that you intend to propose a project for the Aboriginal Film Development somethingorother. So I'm working on a film idea for that. It's real deadline is May 12th. Plenty of time! At least, these days it seems like plenty of time. LOL

Monday, April 13, 2009

Getting ready for auditions and meetings

Well, the auditions are in a week, and things are getting busy. 70 actors, meetings with the DOP, a band or three, the photographer, a couple of potential investors.... and that's just monday and tuesday!!

You can buy me a scotch now.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Me, at the Genie sign before the "meet the nominees" luncheon.

New photos!

Here I am at the Genie Brunch with Jason Daley(left) entrepreneur, marketing guy and film-maker! Talk about handy to know!

I also got to meet several people who are into local indie film production and even a couple of Genie Nominees. When you add in the french toast with crushed strawberries, bacon and fresh, hot croissants... $30 well spent, I think!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Genies Galore!

Paul Gross' Passchendaele wins six awards! Ce qu'il faut pour vivre/The Necessities of Life win four!
Kristen Booth wins best supporting actress for Young People F**king. I loved her acceptance speech! "I'm so fucking excited!" Then she pointed out that this was the only comedy winning an award at the Genies in years, and Canada doesn't have to be dark and depressing to be good.

Wendy Crewson presented both best actor & best actress, and used her moment in the spotlight to critisize Harper's cuts and to invite people to make their voices heard. She also joked about having an "after-party on the lawn of the PM's residence, she'd be the one standing on the overturned car, Sarah Polley would be handing out protest signs by the burning barrel." LOL

But Kristen's win gave me hope for my film. Traditionally, comedies are NOT well represented at awards functions, as they're not "serious" film. But her best supporting actress award (even if the clip they showed was a serious one, not a funny one) shows that comedies can be "serious business".

Friday, April 3, 2009

The Genies

The Genies are in Ottawa this weekend!! So, though I refuse to wear my harem pants, I'm off to a party tonight, brunch tomorrow with several nominees, and then of course, the Genies on TV!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Music and actorsand budgets, oh my!!

So, I have 60 slots for auditions, more or less, and 25 call-backs, leaving +/- 35 new faces.
So why do I only have 6 slots filled? Because no-one's getting back to me about the time they want to come in! Come-on guys, get with it, 2 twelve hour days are enough, I'm not auditioning forever!

On the other hand, listening to multitudinous songs for the soundtrack is kinda nice. I'll be forwarding the best on to the director, so if you're good, send me a MP3.

The less said about budgets the better!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The intro: Me, my Mom & a Whistle, the movie!

The start of a great thing!!
Ok, so now I'm starting active preproduction for "Me, my Mom, and a Whistle", script by Lisa Meuser (Muses Productions) and directed by Gemini Nominated Scott Eldridge.

As you might be able to tell, I'm pretty excited! This looks like it's going to be utterly amazing!

I've been putting together a fabulous package:
Lisa is a successful playwright, who's adapted the screenplay from her own sold out stage play of the same name.
I've gotten the rights to my favourite Good Lovelies' song (
and signed multi-award winning cinematographer Nena Toth.
I'm in negotiations with another band to get a song written for the opening credits.

We're currently preparing for 2 days of auditions, and already the quality of applications is stunning! At the risk of sounding like I appprove of the current econimic situation, hard times does seem to mean better actors applying for low budget indies, probably because the big funding entities are so nervous right now.

Check us out at ( And at ( and (

We're looking into as much private investment and as few government hoops as possible. With all the cuts to Arts funding that have been done, and more being discussed, as well as the ever-changing qualifications, it just seems so much easier to do without the big boys. Not to mention it's a chance for investors to make money off of what is bound to be a great comedy.

If you're interested in helping fund the development or getting your name in the credits, go to (
If you want to submit music for consideration for the soundtrack, go to (