With Distribution Deal Set,
Blind Filmmaker Puts Finishing
Touches On Debut Feature
CAPE CORAL, FL: It's been a journey spanning nearly 5 years, cast and crew replacements, two hurricanes, four states and a suicide, but comic book writer-turned-director Joe Monks, with one distribution offer firmly in place, says the end is finally in sight...so to speak.
"We've had a zillion things go wrong," says Monks of his directorial debut, The Bunker. "Everything from reshoots to footage being ruined because someone clueless was standing next to our cameras with his cell phone on vibrate, to rescoring the entire film after receiving an offer for international distribution. I've had to dump a lot of dead weight along the way, but with the path finally clear, The Bunker should be out in 2011."
Monks, who lost his eyesight in 2002 to complications from diabetes (he's been a Type 1 diabetic since age 12), viewed the obstacles and distractions as opportunities to make the film stronger. "You learn a lot about the people around you when you're tackling a project like this. Something that's never been done before, something that's going to be groundbreaking. Either you fold and give up, or you find ways to make your film better. I wasn't about to let anything keep me from finishing the movie, the way I wanted it done. Not blindness, not diabetes, not sabotage from within. The rough cut got great festival reviews, our screener was well-received, and a cut without final sound design, film look or score secured us a distribution offer covering at least territories. Why would I let distractions derail me?"
To ensure the final cut is as good as it can possibly be, Monks has entered the uncharted waters of microfinancing, putting up a project on the popular Kickstarter.com website. "I've refused to cut corners," says Monks. "I'm blind.
I don't get another chance to make my first film. This one has to count. We're raising some additional funding to make sure everything's done right. The film look, the sound design, some ADR and re-recording, etc. What's left is largely cosmetic, so we've hired a post house equipped with the AVID system, which I think is going to be a substantial bonus in terms of production value. But it costs money, so we're going the microfunding route to put that together."
To view The Bunker project, please visit: Kickstarter.