Thursday, March 26, 2009


Attic is a film written by David Galster and directed by Peter O'Connor. These two guys have a bucket load of talent and potential between them and it was a real honour to be asked to be in their film. And the end result is just lovely. It's the latest short film to be released by Young Irish Film Makers. Ross Costigan, David Thompson and myself play three bored wastrels who hang out in, well, an attic. Have a gander:

Attic (2009) from Young Irish Film Makers on Vimeo.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

80's Nite - April 3rd

I'm gonna do some shameless plugging for a good cause here. Eddie Brennan (Fred Bass on Vultures and master builder extraordinaire) is going to Uganda in June for two months and he's organising a fun filled 80's Nite on Friday 3rd of April in Cleeres on Parliament Street, Kilkenny.

This is also an excuse to show off the lovely poster by Paddy Dunne:

The night is described as 'an awesomely radical bitchin' and bodaciously tubular fresh, wicked and gnarly night of 1980s nostalgia to the max.'

There's no cover charge in the door and all donations are appreciated. The money raised will go towards the building of new schools and much needed facilities in Uganda.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Making Of A Trad Musician

The newest update to our Vultures development section is an article about how we created that Guinness supping trad musician, Pat Cairo.

Pat Cairo is one of my favourite characters in Vultures. Probably because of how much he smiles. He went through an awful lot of different guises and looks before we went with the final one that jumped out of a van in 'The Case Of The Poisoned Dates'. But as you can see, when it comes to The Clancy Brother's jumpers, there is just no beating that look.

The full article about how we came up with Pat Cairo and all its pictorial bits and bobs can be viewed on the website right here.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

I Heart Scott Pilgrim

I usually just blog about things I'm working on in the hope that people get interested in them and will maybe watch them / attend them / eat them. As opposed to blogging about stupid shit like (a. myself or (b. nothing. So this blog transcends all of that as it's something I'm so interested in that I want other people to be interested in. It's a comic book series called Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O'Malley and it is my favourite thing in the world. Ever.

I just finished Volume 5 which is entitled, Scott Pilgrim v The Universe. And it is fucking brilliant. I routinely carry these books around me and pretty much consistently re-read them. In short I'm obsessed.

I came across these books 4 years ago or so at a time when I had an idea for a film that I was hoping to write for Young Irish Film Makers. It was based on my experiences of going out with a girl and then finding out that a whole bunch of guys were infatuated with her and you just stepped right into the firing line. All different types of guys from different walks of life. And you gotta fight for that girl! And uh, then I came across Scott Pilgrim (which is about his attempts to fend off the league of 7 Evil Ex Boyfriends of Ramona Flowers) and pretty much cursed and nixed my idea. And I didn't fight either. 'Cos I'm just not an awesome ninja.

Incidentally, that initial idea of mine soon transmogrified itself into an idea for a film called The Suitors which was eventually written and directed by my good friend Stephen Colfer and it's coming out soon. So, hey, it wasn't all bad.

And I went off and read Scott Pilgrim instead. And spending year after year biding my time for news and updates on the next volume and grinding my teeth and getting really obsessive. And now Edgar Wright has a film coming out so the little book I obsessively protected and only whispered about in shrouded conversations with people, is gonna go off big style and everyone will love it.

And everyone should love it. 'Cos it's fucking brilliant. It's like every bit of action, comedy and romance I've ever wanted to read in anything ever. I only hope the film does it justice. And it better, cos I'm grinding my teeth and getting really obsessive about it.

Monday, March 9, 2009

The Incident Of The Wrapped Sitcom

After a year and a half of shooting, we wrapped Vultures on March 7th and I'm very pleased with what we've got in the can.

It's been a long haul. A lot of commitment, a lot of compromise but most importantly, a lot of fun. There were times when our ambitions vastly exceeded our budget and resources but with a lot of help from a lot of good people, we finally got it done. Now it's a weary sigh and a heavy heart and an eye on the next couple of months of post production and promotion. Tell people about it, go on. It has a website and everything.

The whole series has essentially been a big hobby for all of us. And at the end of it, looking back on the number of people who have worked on it, it's tantamount to a community project. With each shoot, we've got better and more proficient and we hope that's reflected in the last 3 episodes (more on that down the way). For the past 10 weeks everybody has been firing on all cylinders and we hope it represents the pinnacle of the work that everybody has put into this project. To them all, we tip our hats.

We are so proud and so thankful of the work that our entire cast and crew have put into this over the past year and a half. Without them, we would have been rightly screwed. Also, we are very grateful of the support from Young Irish Film Makers and Cartoon Saloon who have encouraged and supported us throughout this. Maybe they see in us the same young whippersnappers they once were, but the two organisations have been incredibly supportive and if we can continue to do work as they have done, we'll be happy campers indeed.

The Adventure Of The Hidden Microfilm' our fifth installment will make its bow online this spring. More details shall be leaked onto the interwebs in the coming weeks so keep an eye out.

Also, I can now finally and quite happily announce that there's not going to be 6 episodes in total. There's going to be 7. We lied. Well, not really. We just realised that to do justic to the story we needed more time to tell it and fuck it, we're doing it for free anyway so why not? The finale of Vultures will be a two part installment and both episodes will tie us up in a nice little package when they're released this summer. We know what the titles are, but we'll not divulge them just yet for slightly spoilerish reasons. So yeah, 'Tennyson Dies Of Cholera' and 'McGrain and Vultour Make A Porno' will be surfacing soon. Keep an eye on for all updates.

From a personal standpoint, I'd like to thank a couple of people in particular. Firstly, Alan Slattery helped me hatch the idea to him when we really had no idea of what it would become. Since then he has worked non stop to make Vultures into the best damn low budget sitcom he possibly can. You couldn't ask for a better producer and indeed, friend. Paddy Dunne has given this project his all ever since that day on a sweaty bus when I asked him if he'd be interested in writing this detective yoke with me. I've never had the pleasure of working so close with someone who's had such similar sensibilities. The writing part of the process has been my absolute favourite, a true pleasure. Ross Costigan has worked his wee white cotton socks off on Vultures since October and we're so grateful that he decided to put his life on hold for this. If it wasn't for Ross, it's very likely myself and Alan would have collapsed into a horrible multi-tasking mess before we got to the finish line so for that, we are eternally thankful.

And lastly, but not leastly, I'd like to thank David Thompson and Sean Hackett who have been on this project since it's conception. Back in 2006 they were the only two actors I knew who had enough screen experience, acting chops and the crucial ingredient, availability. Coupled with the convenience of myself, it made the best sense as our central trio and ever since then they have given up so much of their time to work on Vultures. If we didn't have the two of them, we wouldn't have had a show. Simple as that. They are toppers. On the last shoot, it just seemed like we achieved a level of fluidity as a trio, a really good working partnership and it's something I'd love to revisit at some stage. For now, I'll rest. Cheers. Cheers everyone.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Photographing Vultures

There's a lot of really lovely new photos from the fourth installment of Vultures gone online now over at the website. You can have a gander right here.

The photos for Vultures were intermittently handled by Ross Costigan for the first two episodes. Since 'The Mystery Of The Night Time Refuse' he came on board fully as on set photographer and the quality of the picture content has gone through the roof. His eye for character and detail is razor sharp and thus, the pictures have so much life to them. When you're filming something with so many heightened characters and scenarios, it's important that everything is crystal clear visually and Ross has brought that to his work as photographer and also as a director. He's an exceptionally talented photographer and like a lot of talented photographers, he's had to spend a long time making shit bands look good in shit locations with shit lighting (There's many exceptions to this rule on his website. See the promo stuff for Clive Barnes and The Lion's Mane for example). But if the Vultures shoot has done anything, it's given him opportunity to show off his bag of tricks with a shitload of different characters, locations and scenarios. There's an awful lot more of his stuff to come from the shoot for Episodes 5 & 6 and they're going to be fucking great, I promise. In the meantime, check out all his other pictorial delights here.

Here's a couple of my own favourites from Episode 4:

This photo I love, not so much for the Vulturesness of it all but rather for the fact that Ross made a lovely looking park look even lovelier. We shot this on a very crisp, cold November morning and the light was just perfect. A lovely shot, even with a man stalking a mad Russian woman in it. Lovely.

This is a perfect example of a picture summing up an entire scene. It's not the easiest thing to do but it's done to perfection here.

This is one of those shots that captures the sense of behind the scenes in a really lovely way. Just a few actors bantering. As opposed to men tinkering with lights for hours. The colours here came out lovely. And that's the main miracle of this picture. Our office is shit for lighting.

This picture of Janine Drew and Jim Vultour is one of my favourites basically because of the unholy alliance of the colours pink and brown. I'm glad we decided to put those two together because that colour scheme is not just the essence of these two characters but also of how mismatched they are. Disgusting for the eyes, really. But in a good way. Another lovely example of a picture that illustrates a scene.

If these pics tickle your fancy head on over to the Vultures website and check out some more.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Making Of A Chav Detective

The development section on the Vultures website is one that we haven't found time to give much love to. What with all the pre-production and production and post production. So the process of archiving and putting all our little background details up there for all to see has fallen behind.

Now as we're winding down the shoot, myself and Paddy have found time to get some of that stuff up there. The idea of the development section is to throw a little light on how our ultra low budget web comedy was conceived and how we, eh... developed it I guess. It might be of some interest to some folks as a background to the show but mostly, mostly, it allows us talk all kinds of shite and drop name on all our reference points.

First up is an article on how the character of Janine Drew came about and how we finally achieved the dream of a character in pink velour and boots 'with the fur'.

The article can be found in the Development section right here. Just do a bit of scrolling down first. It's still a work in progress.