Category: Resources

Casting Call on Sat. June 6

Posted by – May 20, 2009

Please forward to people you think might be into acting in the movie — if you’re posting, use this link:

…as it’s viewable by the public.

We’re in pre-production for a new lo-fi sci-fi movie called Ghosts With Shit Jobs. Involving many of the same people as our last one, Infest Wisely (imdb / official site), it’s also a no-budget, multi-director project written by me — but with approximately a million times more planning. We’re going to be starting shooting this summer.

In 2040, a generation of Torontonians have grown up after the economic collapse of the west. The movie consists of episodes of a documentary series popular in mainland China about the bad jobs some white people have — the plucky and resilient souls unlucky enough to be born into the slums of North America are both amusing and moving to the Chinese audience.

We’re doing auditions on Saturday, June 6, 12-4. If you’re in Toronto, please check out the roles we’re trying to fill — there’s a variety of ethnicities and ages.

We are looking for non-union actors for the following roles. If you have any questions or are interested in trying out email your details to and we’ll give you the details for the auditions on Saturday, June 6, 12-4pm in Parkdale, Toronto.

Oscar is a digital janitor in his 20s/30s, and has to manually cover up logos for copyright reasons in the future’s answer to Google StreetView maps. He doesn’t really know why he’s on a show about bad jobs, because he thinks his job is pretty great — he gets to see history come alive in front of his eyes, like the garbagemen who fancy themselves like archaeologists. But the long hours and loneliness are getting to him, especially since the death of his mother.

Gary and Karen are baby-makers in their 20s/30s. They assemble robot baby dolls for the children of the wealthy in Asia. They’re so indistinguishable from real babies that the crying, diapers and feeding of a half-dozen units at once is driving the couple a little crazy and straining their relationship. Both of them are hugely overqualified for the job, but while Gary has a reasonable ten-year plan, the more ambitious Karen would do anything to be making battlebots now.

Anton and Toph are silk collectors in their 20s. Twenty years ago a herd of gigantic spiders ran amok over the eastern seaboard after a genelab outbreak, leaving behind buildings swathed in spider web silk. Although highly toxic and difficult to collect, people like Anton and Toph risk their lives to get it — it’s worth its weight in gold as an ultrastrong building material. Anton, the enthusiastic and delusional older brother, loves the idea of becoming famous for collecting the Tower silk. Toph, the more intelligent younger brother who actually does the collecting, knows it’s a deathtrap.

Serina is human spam in her 20s/30s. She makes a living by mentioning brands and products in casual conversation, and is credited based on their status and wealth. Because of the life she’s chosen, she’s disconnected from friends and family but protected by a lipstick-sized tazer and her “people” in the Nigerian cartel. A chameleon and professionally skilled at reinvention, her good humour and friendliness is only skin deep — beneath it is a cold and ruthless survivor.

Other parts

  • the Documentarian, an Asian man (Mandarin speaking a plus)
  • the show host, an Asian woman (Mandarin speaking a plus)
  • Harry, a heavyset Caucasian in 40s/50s/60s
  • Tom, an alpha male office worker in his 20s/30s
  • Leo, a beta male office worker in his 20s/30s
  • Avinash, an east Indian male in his 30s/40s
  • Nat, a Caucasian male in his 20s/30s
  • Mr. Wilson, a Caucasian male in his 40s/50s
  • two eight year old boys
  • two Asian men, 30s-40s
  • a man in his 60s-70s

This is such an ambitious project that if you’re interested, I’m pretty sure we’ll find a part for you to play — it might be as a background extra or it might be as a Director of Photography, but you won’t know if you don’t get in touch!

Directors of Photography

Posted by – May 11, 2009

"i can't believe it's a cooking show"
I put a call out for DPs a while ago and at the moment i have four DPs that have contacted me back.  Two of them have mentioned that they are interested to work on the project, another one is a jim munroe fan, and there is one last one that just joined the races recently.

So the candidates are:  Chris Frampton, Christopher Giroux, Ioana Vasile, and Jacob Stein.

Christopher Giroux will be sending me his reel this friday (that’s what his e-mail said).

chris frampton’s site, ioana’s site, jacob’s

Ghosts with Masks

Posted by – April 30, 2009

With all of this fear-mongering going on about Bacon Lung… er, I mean Swine Flu, it’s good to see the creativity of human beings continuing to shine through. People in Mexico have begun to decorate their surgical masks, and it could make a great, cheap production design element. 

Here’s a photo gallery.

Remember, only you can kung-fu swine flu!

Slathered in Space Spider Silk

Posted by – April 15, 2009

Sanford, who’s offered to do a matte painting for the movie, just sent me the above concept drawing for a Toronto after the giant spiders have their way with it in 2025. Very cool.

As if that isn’t enough, he’s also been to Shanghai recently, and sent this collection of shots for possible references.

Poster Idea #1

Posted by – April 13, 2009

I’ve whipped up a potential poster idea which should get us started visually. It’s a first step, and will obviously grow and evolve as the project does. BTW, the chinese characters mean “work hard.”

Pre-Production Overdrive

Posted by – March 31, 2009

This Sunday we’re going to be shifting GWSJ to the next level.

Directors, can you please arrive at 11 with the following prepared, in order of importance:

  1. Read the script and pick 4 scenes you’d like to workshop, one from each of the main characters. Bring a copy of each of the scenes for the actors.
  2. Read the two contracts, as we’ll be signing them. Please email me in advance if you have questions are so I can research/edit as required.
  3. Watch some clips from This American Life (here and here) to get a sense of the cinematic style I’m thinking about, and this clip from the 7 Up series to see the interview style. (If you have time, both season 1 of This American Life and 49 Up (the latest in the 7 Up series) are available through vid stores and bit torrent.)

We’ll be starting with a script brainstorming at 11am. At 1pm the actors will be arriving for the workshopping session. We’ll be done by 4.

I’ll be in touch with everybody via email later this week with the location.

Cast and Crew Corral

Posted by – February 24, 2009

Ok, continuing the round-up… if there’s people who you think would be good to act in this movie in a speaking part capacity, now’s the time to ask them if they’re interested in possibly getting involved. I’m especially interested in:

  • people who aren’t in their 20s and 30s
  • people who aren’t white
  • people who are excited about the idea of lo-fi sci-fi or indie moviemaking

…but that’s not required. Neither is acting experience, and in fact we can’t use actors who are a member of the union (ACTRA) since no one is getting paid. We’re shooting in the summer.

Some roles that we’re looking to fill in the crew:

  • special effects and propmaster
  • music supervisor
  • design/promotions
  • documenter (of the filmmaking process)
  • wardrobe (clothes in 2040)
  • cinematographers

If you have any ideas leave a comment or shoot me an email by a week today!

Locations, Locations, Locations

Posted by – February 17, 2009

Yee-haw! It’s time for the first instalment of the Resource Corral, where we collectively brainstorm all the people, places and gear we can use for the movie.

This week I’d like people to think hard about potential locations for us to shoot the movie.

Interesting, atmospheric places. Weird places. Or just normal places we might be able to get access to.

Interiors might include apartments, houses, work places, of yours or your friends. Exteriors might include back yards, patios, rooftops.

Don’t worry about getting permission yet, we’re just brainstorming at this stage.

Link to photos if you have them, otherwise just describe them the best you can. Just respond to this on email or add a comment.

Chris has suggested:

  • A call centre with boardroom;
  • A Farm – includes a historic farmhouse. A barn with a section converted to a dance floor complete with mirrored dance ball. It is an old barn with big posts and beams and the sun shining through spaces in the boards. Has a pond and a forest area with X-mas trees.
  • a basement bike storage area – bike racks stores about 20 bikes


Posted by – December 18, 2008

A couple of super-talented illustrators and animators have offered to help with the movie — Michael Cho, a high-school pal Sanford, and Matt Hammill:

Interstitials might be one way to take advantage of this, but what about a low-rent Waking Life treatment? With the artist doodling faces over live actors faces?

I’m thinking the Doodlefaces are from the future — it’s an avatar-type thing for them. But it’s kind of hard to tell. They just start showing up, speaking mostly incomprehensibly, pointing and laughing at totally commonplace things — like we might do if we were dropped a few hundred years back and saw a pirate and started saying “aaarrrrr!” to the pirate’s befuddlement (but our companions hilarity).

“What happens in the 2000s, stays in the 2000s” is their attitude. They treat us like bit players to their starring roles, are totally irresponsible and create paradoxes and chain-reactions to amuse and annoy people back home.

Got Lights?

Posted by – December 15, 2008

We’re doing a lighting/sound skillshare this Sunday, and I’m looking at our lighting options. Ideally I’d like a kit so we can try 3-point lighting but if you have anything — or know folks who do — let me know via a comment or an email in the next day or two. I will rent from Trinity Square Video if nothing turns up, so the skillshare will happen regardless — let me know if you’d like to attend.