04 February, 2010

Decision - Unanimous

Am I surprised by the responses we recieved from the cast and crew screening?  Well - yes.  I did expect that the balance of opinion would be positive.  I didn't expect the response to be as positive as it was.

When Jodie and I arrived at the theatre to start setting up she asked me if I was nervous.

"No.  This is the crowd that is destined to like this film.  They're going to like it."
"What if they don't?"
"Then there isn't much reason to get out of bed tomorrow morning."

As people arrived I was asked the same question numerous times, most significantly by Mike Jackson, our editor.  Mike was nervous.

It was at the party that the depth of people`s appreciation really became aparent.  Time after time I heard variations on the same sentiment - something to the tune of "I've worked on so many independent films.  They never turn out feeling like a real movie.  But I can't say that about this one."  It was a room full of proud people, and they deserved to be.  They all served us well each in their way.

Many of them have sent their sentiments to me to be added to the blog.  I've compiled them below. (With some editing for brevity, spoilers and irrelevant & personal comments.) I'm also taking the opportunity to draw your attention to a related blog post by Rebecca, our publicist.


Hi Kennedy:

I just can't get over what an amazing accomplishment Beast of Bottomless Lake is. Congratulations. Janet had made plans to take me out for my "birthday" dinner so we did that instead of the pub. We had a great time quoting lines and talking about the movie. I said to her, "boy, don't you think Keith would be pleased with that?" and she smiled a big smile and said, "yes, I do think so, absolutely."

I guess it was a film that appealed to my sense of humour, particularly as the story got rolling. There are so many gems: moments, great funny lines, wonderful scenes. I loved the beach party scene, the wedding scene on the boat, the cheesy "dramatic re-enactments", and David Nykl's reflective scene at the dock questioning what you do once you've achieved your dream. I got a huge kick out of the aboriginal character. I also have to say you were a standout in your performance. Not one false note, natural, at ease and fun to watch - especially cool that you managed this while wearing so many other hats.

Anyway, I'm gushing but I am seriously in awe. I hope you guys are all mighty proud. Thanks for a great afternoon at the movies!

All the best,

- Grace
Congratulations! It went really well and I am so proud of you for managing to finish something this monumental. There is a reason people just don't go out and make full length independent films.

You can be proud of just everything that folks have learned along the way. We have a saying in the project management world.... by the time you finish a project you are qualified to have started it in the first place.




LOVED it and had a blast this past weekend.

- Kenton
Thank you for inviting me to the crew and cast screening. I was happy to attend and really enjoyed seeing everyone again.

I really enjoyed the day and the movie. You guys did a terrific job putting it together.

Gordon May reminded me that he and I, after Craig was stumped about the missing leg of the Peg Leg Princess, asked if we could; that we had come up with something and could we help?

We came up with...

[NOTE: I've snipped out a significant spoiler here. Anyone who has seen the film should be able to identify what is being talked about from the details I've left.]

...not that Gordon and I are fishing for additional credits or anything.

I had fun and many adventures during my short stay in Vancouver. I think I even got a little buzz from second hand smoke walking down Robson Street.

Movie stars, Roger, the Skipper, the Professor and Leanne, all on Okanagan Lake. Awesome!

Thanks to Pat and Kevin and gang for getting me down to the pub, Red Truck Beer, and steering me in the opposite direction of the safe injection site on East Hastings. Instead I was directed towards the light in Gastown and back to my hotel room.

Let me know of any screening in the Okanagan.

Regards and thanks again.

Again cool and awesome. All good.

Enjoy the Olympics..

- Ted


Hi Craig and Kennedy,

Once again I have to say how impressed I am with The Beast! I had so much fun watching it and I look forward to seeing it again.

I hope you had a great time at the pub on Saturday and are able to get some rest and relaxation this week or sometime really soon. You deserve it.


- Janet


Good Morning Rebecca &Provost,

Congratulations on a fantastic film! The cast and crew "screening" was a lot of fun and I am very happy with the final result!!!

As the Production Designer and Props builder (and my husband supplied the picture vehicle - the Juanabees Van) it was great to see the items in play!

Thanks so much!

Kindest regards,

- Trish


Thanks again for the invite to Beast of Bottomless Lake. Love to talk to you guys when your time permits - to pick your brains, find out about the hurdles you had to overcome, etc.

- Tariq


Hey guys,

Great show today!!  I had to take off quickly afterward but I wanted to let you know I had a great time and was super proud of you both. The show looks and sounds awesome. Super glad to be there.

- Tallulah


Hi Kennedy and Craig,

I deliberately waited awhile before writing about seeing The Beast on the big screen to eliminate from my comments the euphoria of the moment – seeing everyone again, the swoop of the event itself. I hadn't intended to take quite this long to let the excitement settle.

Funny thing is, I think I’m going to say pretty much what I would have said then.

I was very, very pleased with the film! Right from the opening credits. I love interesting credits that fit the film you are about to see, and these credits settled me into the experience right from dimming of the lights. I was amazed at the cinematography and coverage. You’d think we had given the editor all the takes he could possibly wish for. What a fine job he did of weaving in and out of what he had. Wonderful!

The sound was excellent. I think sound is one of the main weaknesses of many low budget films. Not a problem here! And the music! Just wonderful.

As I read the script, both initially and as the filming progressed, I developed a sense of how I saw the story play out – how I would direct it, I suppose. To be honest, I would have down played the humour much more. In fact, I had moments during the filming when I was afraid we were going over the top to the point of de-grounding the story. Well, I needn’t have worried. The film has humour. It has pathos. Neither over-rides the other. Credit for that must be spread around; the writing, the directing, the performances, and once again the editing.

As I’m sure I’ve told you more than once, from the moment I first read Clive’s sides for the audition, I wanted to be part of this project. And that connection just grew and grew. How fortunate I was to be able to be involved in the physical processes of filming as well as acting in the film. How thrilling the result!

One of the amusing things about seeing the film was my reaction when a scene would come on that I hadn’t helped film. Hey – where did that come from? I never saw that before.

I’m so proud of those of you who have continued the post-photography work. As so many independent films do, it could have died in the can. But it didn’t and I have every faith that this film is going to find distribution and get seen.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

With admiration and gratitude,

- Gordon


And now my words back to all of you...

Thank you all.  The effect of your words and appreciation cannot be measured.  We could not have done it without all of you.

- Kennedy

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