The pressure of writing a blog post every week is already starting to get to me. All week, I stared at this very entry and waited from something to come forth, some spark of brilliance that all would find invaluable and share-worthy. And the screen remained blank. As the days passed, I began to blame Tyler more and more, because suddenly after 3 and a half years he decided to jump onto the blog train full force. A train, mind you, which I had been maintaining as best I could over that time and was more passionate about when I felt deep in the shit (see my last post about my ever evolving role as the project has progresses). But now, he was excited and, goddamn it, that means it must be done.
And that’s the way it is with everything we do as the Meyer Bros (aka Monkey Productions). There is a bizarre dynamic between the two of us that, despite our sometimes extreme differences, seems to be the very thing that helps us find the middle ground, the place where the film should be and feels right. And that’s when it hit me: write about that. Write about how we came to find ourselves making a bigfoot feature film, and how the two of us finally agreed what the hell that meant. So, yeah… here’s that.¹
The story begins in 2008. I don’t actually recall when the spark hit me, but it did. It might have been after seeing Iron Man, or maybe it was some of the recent indie films I had enjoyed, like Right Outside Your Door or Deadgirl. It may have been the fact that we had been tossing around numerous ideas to generate interest in and potentially raise money for another feature we wanted to shoot called Consumed, a period piece horror requiring real budgets, locations, actors, skill, talent, experience, balls. In other words, things we lacked.
Whatever it was, at sometime early that year I went to Tyler and said something to the effect of “Dude, we need to make a feature. Enough short films. We need to do this. Now. We can do this. Let’s do this.” which later got watered down to the phrase “DOIT” that I inspire all those around me with.
Rather than the unbridled, unjustified confidence and enthusiasm that I was displaying and hoping for in return, what I got was “Like what? Got any ideas?” I was stunned to silence by this logical nonsense. Ideas? What the hell? Did we have ideas when we did Adventure Barney or the Badness Halloween Special ’98? No! We just did it. And they we raging successes… with friends and family.
Okay, fine. I agreed. I suggested that we both go off and in 30 days return with our bestest ideas for a feature film that we could actually pull off. The criteria were simple: minimal locations (preferable single location), minimal number of characters, and thusly, minimal budget; ie, something we could self-finance. We both went to our respective caves and toiled over ideas, brainstorming until our brains ceased to function. Or at least one of us did. Thirty or so days later, we reconvened.
“So, what do you got?” I asked.
“I couldn’t really think of anything,” Tyler replied.
“Yeah. What do you have?”
“Other than an immense hatred of you right now?”
I then proceeded to tell him the half a dozen or so ideas that I had, which honestly were not any better than is nothing. Most of them he had heard before and all of them were merely concepts, ideas and not stories. And, more importantly, none of them ever came close to sparking Tyler’s interest, which is essential when you are in a partnership. But, not only that. The fact is I am primarily the writer and the more mainstream of the two of us. For me to find interest in a project, all it takes is for me to find the human hook, the element of human nature that I get to explore and connect with. For Tyler to get involved with a project, he really needs to have a more intimate connection with it, for lack of a better phrase. It’s as if the story is some part of him, an intimate revealing of some aspect of his personality, which can be unusual. If the idea doesn’t connect with him on that level, it isn’t going to happen, at least not with him directing.
However, I know these things about him and I use this knowledge. And I came prepared to our meeting. Prepared with an idea that in no way fit the criteria that we had said, and was for us the moviemaking equivalent of suggesting brain surgery after we had just learned CPR. At the bottom of the notebook I had jotted my ideas onto, I had written one word that had no chance in hell other than to grab his interest, but it was the only chance we had to move forward. If it didn’t work, nothing would and we’d be back where we started.
“Okay, how about this,” I said. “Bigfoot.”
And that was all I needed. I was going to write us a bigfoot movie that we could make. But it wouldn’t be quite that simple.
For one, it could not star Dustin Diamond, as much as Tyler may have wanted, because we do not know him. And secondly, we could not shoot in Lichtenstein, because of an incident on a European Metal message board where I said some bad things about Erben der Schöpfung, something about their album Twilight being the worst export from Lichtenstein ever and they should stick to what they know best like sausage casings. It was not well received by their royal family, who are big Erben der Schöpfung fans. I’m currently listed as an enemy of the state and I’m not permitted to enter their country for any reason, unless I bring chocolates. But I stand by my position. They will not break me.
[NOTE: That entire last paragraph is all bullshit and was for the followers of our Facebook page, whom Tyler promised in his teaser posts for this blog entry that I would touch on certain topics. Jackass.]
But more importantly, it turns out that each of us had different ideas as to what a bigfoot movie should be.
In The Beginning Part 2: That’s not a bigfoot movie. This is a bigfoot movie, I will discuss how our different sensibilities came to agreement on what the exact definition of “Bigfoot Movie” was without killing each other or giving up completely.
¹ It was brought to my attention that I may not have the full or accurate story. The person that told me this can bite me.