Today marks the home stretch of L.A.'s 2008 48-Hour Film Project. Sean and Curtis are out in the editing suite in the back of the garage, honing the raw footage down to seven minutes and putting the final touches on the theme song. Yes, ladies and gentlement, this year's entry has its very own theme song, the title tune "Recipe for Danger."
Here's a brief overview of the 48HFP for those who are confused. The idea is that, on Friday evening, each participating team draws a genre from a hat; at the very last minute, all of the teams are given the same character, prop and line of dialogue that must be included in the finished film so that no one can start early. Then everyone rushes off to make a 4 to 7 minute film that must be completed (including music and credits) and turned in by 7:30 Sunday night. Sean and Curtis, co-founders of Biscuits & Gravy Productions, have been entering since 2003, and in 2005 and 2006 they won the L.A. branch of the competition, quite a feat as L.A. is considered the most competitive city that participates in the 48HFP; their 2006 winner, Doughboy, Beware!, was even shown out of competition at Cannes last year. What can I say? The boys are good.
This year the boys have decided to fly a little under the radar, so they had me enter the contest under the name Team You'll Eat It and Like It. They're not trying to fool anybody -- they just want to work without any extra pressure or expectations on them. I am the movie's nominal producer, and while I have preferred to take a casual, hands-off role, I actually have been a little more vocal than usual, expressing preferences for plot development, settings, and who gets to record the vocals for the theme song. I've also taken charge of the paperwork, which I hope won't prove to be a disaster.
The editing isn't done yet so I shouldn't say too much about the movie at this point. I will tell you that we drew "spy movie" as our genre. The required character is Ronda Donellson, a game host, the prop is 3 or more potatoes, and the line of dialogue is, "Leave it to me -- I'm a professional." Our climactic scene involves a big potato salad food fight, which necessitated draping my kitchen in a big tarp; you can see Tricia and Taylor smeared with the stuff in the picture above. Those gals were game! I think the battle fulfilled some disturbing fantasy of Curtis' that is best left unexplored.
I'll let you know how the final leg goes. The movie will be screened Wednesday night at the Laemmle Fairfax out near the Grove if you want to view the finished project for yourself.