Matt's Blog

PLEASE VOTE FOR OUR WEB SERIES!!!


Our new web series NOT SUITABLE FOR WORK (NSFW) is a semi-finalist for YouTube’s NextUp program. If NSFW wins we’ll receive funding to shoot more episodes and YouTube will promote the series. Please visit our voting page, all you need to do is give the video the thumb’s up!

Click here: NSFW- TUESDAY

Or copy/paste this link:

http://www.youtube.com/creators?x=nextup_ptRAVOJGijU

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!

New web series semi-finalist on YouTube

Check it out:

Our new web series “Not Suitable For Work (NSFW)” has been selected as a semi finalist in YouTube’s NextUp program. The winner receives cashola and all sorts of other great perks. If we win it means a ton more webisodes coming your way! Help us by going to YouTube’s Creator Page, choose the “NextUp” program and give NSFW_Tuesday the thumb’s up. Thanks!

Click on the pic above or here: YouTubeCreatorPage

MAN VS. and web series

After a looong hiatus, I am working on new webisodes of MAN VS. I think taking a fair amount of time off has been a good thing. It has allowed me to ruminate over MAN VS. and the series in general. I hit a wall about a year ago; we had been cranking out episode after episode, and frankly, I think I got burned out. We have been pumping out MAN VS. episodes for what feels like eons now, and we never took a break. Our last episode was MAN VS. SHINE, which now seems appropriate to be the episode which burned me out. MAN VS. SHINE doesn’t really fit the MAN VS. model. Floyd doesn’t foil Ted’s day in some way. Floyd does die, but that is only half the equation. MAN VS. SHINE was sort of a vanity project for me. I have always loved the film SHINE, and I have always been fascinated with the RACH 3. So it was a technical thrill for me to write this episode, then direct it in a way that tried to convincingly show Floyd actually playing the RACH 3, which if you ask any pianist is a technically-horrific piece to play. Sergei Rachmaninoff had unusually long fingers, so for him, the reach and demands of this piece weren’t as difficult as for someone who didn’t have the same physical attributes as far as fingers are concerned.

Anyway, it looks like the band is getting back together. I have been thinking a lot about MAN VS. lately, and I am having strong longings. I miss it. And some fun ideas are coming to mind. For example, I’ve been thinking about Floyd. He won $80,000 in the lottery. That’s how he funds his insane hobby of faking deaths. Well, I think his bank account must be nearly depleted by now. Sort of makes sense that he would have to see his accountant. What a great opportunity for a new episode, and what a great way to start off a new season. Floyd is out of money, he needs to see his accountant. I’ve also been thinking of MAN VS. KING’S SPEECH. Just the thought of it makes me laugh. And definitely MAN VS. PARANORMAL ACTIVITY.

On a side-note: My web guy, who manages my web sites, his name is Jimmy. I have given him the nickname “Snake Face.” Why? Because he has an elaborate snake tattoo on his face. (check out this interview with Jimmy for a fuller picture “Jimmy Interview“). He’s a little scary. He emailed me the other day and basically said that if I don’t start blogging, he’s going to break my knees. Since I know that Jimmy has done this to victims of his wrath, I am now going to start blogging. This site, MAN VS. FILMS DOT COM, is going to be all things MAN VS.

If you’re interested in hearing/reading about my other projects, and some random stuff, visit my other website, www.mattduggan.com

Stay tuned!

Cheers,
MD

Marc Hershon Hates People

Marc Hershon is hilarious; check out his blog and buy his book!

http://www.ihatepeople.biz/

I Hate People! by Jonathan Littman & Marc Hershon is published by the good folks at Little, Brown in New York. The elements we’ve started blogging about here and a whole lot more can be found between the covers.

MAN VS. Interview with Stephanie Bell, Ninja

Stephanie Bell

Stephanie Bell has an interesting background: At the tender age of two she was stolen from her home by the Yakuzi, who raised her to be an assassin. At age four she killed her captors, and then invited herself into the famous Ninja Academy, where she earned her degree in Ninja-ism. Then she killed everybody in the Academy. As she claims, “It was in self-defense.”

Besides being an internationally feared assassin who hates ninjas, Stephanie’s also an award-winning producer of film and theater in Los Angeles. She recently produced the short film The Winged Man, written by Academy-award nominated screenwriter Jose Rivera (The Motorcycle Diaries, Trade) for the prestigious AFI Directing Workshop for Women. Stephanie has produced for By the Woods Productions, The Annex Film Group, Soft Serve Pictures; and award-winning theatre companies EST-LA (managing director), Sacred Fools (Co-Artistic Director), and Theatre of NOTE, among others.

Man Vs. caught up with Stephanie while she was packing her suitcase for the upcoming Tournament of 1,000 Ninjas. Enjoy!

MV: So if we have this straight, you trained at the Ninja Academy, then you killed all of the Ninjas at the Academy. And now you’re headed off to the Tournament of 1,000 Ninjas? Don’t you think that’s kind of risky, like, maybe they’ll seek revenge?

SB: Crossing the street is risky, driving on the 405 is risky, Ninjas seeking revenge are easily dealt with. I have learned to live with a second pair of eyes in the back of my head, always anticipating that at any time, I could be forced to defend myself. I have learned to maintain a Zen state of mind when it comes to danger.

MV: Thank you for letting us live.

SB: My pleasure!

MV: So what are you up to? Any projects you want to give a shout-out? Plug?

SB: I’m working on setting up financing for a kickass screenplay by Man Vs. writer/director Matt Duggan called “The Devil of Appalachia.” It is going to be one of the best horror-thrillers ever made and I can’t wait to work with Matt on it. Basically, four experienced hikers on the Appalachian Trail become victim to a serial hunter who performs taxidermy on his female victims and leaves his male victims to die a slow death.

So if you know of anyone who is interested in bequeathing to this totally cool, totally scary project, send them my way and I’ll fill them in on the gory details!

MV: What if we dressed up Elmo in a Shinobi Shozoko (ninja uniform) alongside Gizmo (from The Gremlins), and outfitted them both with ninja warrior swords and accessories. Holding hands, these two little munchkins whistled happily as they skipped down the street, tossing flowers along the way. We imagine that would be a pretty darn cute sight. But with your predilection for killing all things ninja, what would you do?

SB: I may consider letting them do this for a few minutes, but really, who cares about cute? Although, considering one of my next projects is a children’s film (no, not “The Devil of Appalachia”!) I guess I can only join them as long as they don’t toss daisies – I hate daisies. And it is always a best practice to keep your enemies close to you.

MV: So you’ve produced the last five episodes of Man Vs.- Man Vs. Dragon (part 1 & 2); Man Vs. Horror and Man Vs. Pirates (part 1 & 2). Cool. What do you like about working on Man Vs.?

SB: The talent of the directors, writers, actors and really, the entire crew, is fantastic. Everyone gives 150% of themselves to these films and I am lucky to have worked with them. Actually, it isn’t work for me – it’s downright fun. Plus I get to practice my Ninja moves with all of them at one time – it keeps me in shape and prepared for that moment when one of the actual, wimpy Ninjas decide to go on the attack.

MV: Do you ever catch bullets in your teeth just for the hell of it?

SB: Only when shot at point blank range.

MV: If you had to choose one of the following to be your sidekick, who would it be: 1) A Werewolf who isn’t potty-trained and who only quotes Adam Sandler movies; 2) A V-Rex (as you’ll remember, a V-Rex is the off-spring of a T-Rex bred with a Vampire) who sings Boy George songs (only his lesser-known songs) all day and has a nasty smoking habit; or 3) Cory Feldman and Cory Haim as Siamese Twins who act out scenes from their 1989 film Dream A Little Dream. And no, you can’t explode into a rage and kill the Corys; you have select a,b or c. And no, you can’t kill us either.

Oh, and in case you didn’t see Dream A Little Dream here’s what Roger Ebert had to say: “Dream a Little Dream is an aggressively unwatchable movie.”

SB: Goll, they all sound like so much fun, I’m not sure I can choose just one – why not all of them? And really, what about my favorite Cory film – “The Lost Boys” – I mean, come ON – you just can’t discount that film – it’s a downright classic.

Vote For This Kick-ass Film

Robbies Withdrawal

Hello Friends!

A short film that I’m in has been selected as part of the Seattle
International On-line Film Festival! It’s called “Robbie’s Withdrawal.”
There are only 10 shorts competing. This is a HUGE honor for this film,
and we need your support. Please vote! This link will get you started!

http://myfestival.indieflix.com

You have to:
1) register to the site (it’s free)
2) download their screening software (free, and takes about 30 seconds)
HINT: once you’ve downloaded, go into the GridCast software on your
computer to complete the installation
3) watch & vote

It doesn’t take long at all and it’s easy!

Iron Man deleted scenes on The Movie Blog dot com

Here’s some great deleted scenes The Movie Blog managed to dig up from early drafts of IRON MAN:

http://www.themovieblog.com/2008/05/iron-man-deleted-scenes

There was another deleted scene that they missed. It shows STARK on the toilet after eating ten Burger King burgers. His robotic side-kick is wiping his butt with Charmin toilet paper, and gives it an extra squeeze to show how soft it is. (The toilet paper, not STARK’S butt). And then the robot sprays STARK with the fire extinguisher because it’s just so cute and we we’re expecting him to do it anyway because STARK keeps reprimanding him not to.

MAN VS. IRON MAN (and why you should boycott Burger King)

As you might know (or maybe you don’t because you don’t care) the Screen Actor’s Guild is currently in negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (“AMPTP”) for our Television and Theatrical contracts. These agreements represent over 1 billion dollars in annual earnings and cover all SAG television and theatrical motion pictures.

As a proud, card-carrying SAG member, I’ve been reading up on the emails that SAG sends out, but admittedly, I don’t pay too much attention. All I know is that the producers want to gyp the actors out of money in the new media. But a while back, I gave a cursory glance at Alan Rosenberg’s (he’s the president of SAG) List of SAG Priorities for the negotiations, and one bullet point jumped out at me:

PRODUCT INTEGRATION

• We [SAG] will address the alarming trend of “forced endorsement” which has taken product placement to the next level by requiring members to do uncompensated commercials embedded in scripted content.

***

In simple terms, this means that an actor shows up on set for his TV show and is handed his script. He turns to page five and rehearses his scene that involves some dramatic turn, like he learns his sister is a robot; or maybe he finds out his wife is cheating on him. But then he skims toward the bottom of the page and reads the action lines: “JED picks up a Coca-Cola bottle, twists off the cap to a refreshing shzzzzz and pop! Then drinks and says, “Nothing refreshes like a cold Coke.” Jed then turns to his friend and says, “Did I tell you Susan’s a robot? Yeah, I just found out yesterday. So weird.”

I rarely watch TV. No moral reason for this, it’s really just a matter of taste. Most of what’s on is crap. So I didn’t notice this trend of forced product placement into TV scripts that was outlined in the SAG List of Priorities.

But then my wife and I went to the Cinerama dome last night and saw IRON MAN. And guess what? About the middle of the way through act 1, our hero JOHN STARK is found in the desert, after escaping from the Afghan terrorists. Two U.S. helicopters hover above him as he collapses to his knees, thankful to be saved. Stark’s best buddy jumps out of the helicopter, runs over and delivers a sappy line. Next CUT-TO Stark walking off a huge military cargo plane back in the U.S. Stark turns to his assistant and says he wants two things: “a press conference and a classic American cheeseburger.”

A classic American Cheeseburger.

In the next scene, Stark gets out of his limousine wiping his mouth (because he just ate a classic American Cheeseburger) and then he holds his press conference. At the start of the press conference, he takes out another cheeseburger (I think he pulls it out of his jacket pocket), and now you clearly see from the wrapping that John Stark’s classic American cheeseburger of choice is Burger King.

I watched Robert Downey Jr. sell Burger King smack dab in the middle of IRON MAN.

This is a big deal. This really gets me pissed. Regardless whether or not I’m in SAG, I’m speaking now just as a film lover, someone who considers going to the movies an important part of his life. And now I’m being subjected to commercials during my movie?!

Remember the old days when they first introduced commercials before the film played, and remember how everybody was up in arms? They’re forcing commercials on us, we said. They have no right, we said. We are here precisely because we’re sick of all the commercials on TV, we said. Someone just farted, we said. Or maybe I just said that when I was at JAW 3 and there were a lot of old people in the theater.

It’s fist-shaking time. I hereby declare that with every opportunity I am boycotting Burger King. As a film-goer, Burger King ruined my movie experience by making John Stark wolf down their cheeseburger. As a member of SAG, Burger King ruined my movie-going experience because they made Robert Downey Jr.- a great, great actor who’s working his way back to us, babe- Burger King made him eat their damn cheeseburger. They made him film a commercial while filming the movie. I wish I could have seen Robert Downey Jr.’s face when he turned to that page of the script and read: “Stark PULLS out delicious cheeseburger from jacket pocket and takes savory bite.” But what’s Downey to do? The guy’s career is just swinging back into motion, he’s not going to ruffle feathers. At least not yet. Let’s hope now that he has some mojo going, he throws a good, old-school hissy-fit next time they try to force him to peddle fast food that’s responsible for this country’s obesity epidemic, which is exponentially increasing the cases of type 2 juvenile diabetes.

Boycott Burger King. Talk about this affront, this travesty and this slap in your face. Hate Burger King for grabbing you by the throat and saying, “What are you going to do, peon? We have the big bucks, not you. If we want you to watch Iron Man eat one of our hoof/ear/tongue and tail burgers, then that’s what’s gonna happen. Now sit back, watch your movie and shut up.”

Hate Burger King for their stupid-ass King mascot, who is just plain creepy. Remember the commercial where the King is in some guy’s bed? The regular Joe wakes up and there’s the King, sitting next to him, with his big, goofy and creepy perma-smile. And then the King offers him a nasty morning crud-croissant filled with lard and burger boogers. Every time I watched that commercial I desperately wanted the regular Joe to suddenly cold cock the King and start whooping on him while screaming, “Who the f*ck are you and what the f*ck are you doing in my bed?!” And just pulverize the King. Because, really, wouldn’t any normal person react that way if he woke up to some weird-looking, plastic-faced “King” sitting in bed next to him? A) How’d he get into my home; B) Why’s he wearing that ridiculous costume; C) What the hell does he want from me? Beat his ass down.

I’m starting my own campaign of action. I call it: “Negative Response Reaction”

NEGATIVE RESPONSE REACTION
- A forced commercial’s purpose is the same as any regular commercial: Place product, drive consumer buying. A NEGATIVE RESPONSE REACTION is the unintended consequence of a forced commercial. In a NRR, a negative emotion is evoked in the consumer, typically anger/hatred. This negative emotion creates in the consumer a sudden need to strike out against the product he was forced to view. The consumer employs grass-roots action in order to demote the product. The corporation is soon forced to take its King mascot to the backyard, shoot and bury.

Have you seen examples of forced product placement on TV shows? If so, tell me. I’d like to hear. And please, start practicing NRR freely and often!