Episode Forty-Eight: Icons Panel #2- Universal Dead

August 4, 2010 by cindy  
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The Icons event was held on Saturday, July 24th during Comic Con. Film Method conducted a total of four panels at the event. Here is the recording from the second panel of the day with Vernon Mortenson, Kelly Parks, Valerie Perez, and Gary Graham of Universal Dead. We will be releasing the recordings from these panels throughout the month of August.

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Universal Dead Website

Director Vernon Mortensen has led an amazing life.  The son of Christian Missionaries, he was born in Bangkok, Thailand and by the age of twelve, had traveled all over the world.   After finishing high school in the USA, he went on to serve as a US Navy SWCC (pronounced “swick”) commando in the Navy’s elite Special Boat Teams where much of what he did remains classified to this day.  His life has always been very eclectic and although always considering himself to be a filmmaker and businessman, he has also worked as an engineer, a photographer, a bodyguard, an emergency medical technician, a private investigator, a librarian, and as a substitute teacher for the inner-city schools of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Vernon is a master storyteller and filmmaker who applies his wealth of knowledge and experience to fuel his creativity.  As a writer, he has written screenplays, short stories, plays, novels, and essays in a variety of genres and subjects.  As a filmmaker, Vernon’s movies have been sold to markets all over the world and have been featured at many prestigious international film festivals.

Vernon is currently studying for his Doctor of Business Administration at Alliant International University’s Marshal Goldsmith School of Management.  He has a Master’s Degree in Professional Writing (Screenwriting) from the University of Southern California’s prestigious Professional Writing Program where he received an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Fellowship.  He has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film from the world renowned Art Center College of Design, as well as Bachelor of Science from New York State’s Excelsior College.  In 1999, Vernon was selected for a highly coveted Director’s Internship at the Los Angeles classical repertory theater, A Noise Within, where he studied under celebrated stage and theater director, Sabin Epstein.

 Shortly after graduating from USC in 2003, Vernon was recalled from the Naval Reserve to serve on active duty in the Special Boat Teams one last time. After completing his term of service, Vernon permanently retired from the United States Navy in 2008 and returned to filmmaking.

Writer Kelly Parks is the world’s only ex-CIA, Rocket Scientist, Stand-up Comic, Screenwriter! Kelly grew up in Wisconsin (mmmm… cheese) and spent his youth watching sci-fi and horror movies as well as gazing up at the heavens, wishing he could live among the stars. After high school, Kelly moved to Arizona to study Engineering Physics and one fateful day he met a recruiter from the CIA. Soon after, Kelly was recruited as an analyst into the CIA’s Space Systems Division (he highly recommends getting a Top Secret Clearance if you ever have the opportunity) where he and a few other hand picked scientists kept track of what the Russians were doing in space. Realizing that The Agency was never going to fulfill his dream of space travel, Kelly left public service and took a job in the private sector as an aerospace engineer specializing in Orbital Mechanics. These days Kelly writes screenplays and recently won 1st prize at the International Horror & Science Fiction Screenplay Competition. Kelly’s greatest writing honor came in 2007 when he was a semi-finalist for the prestigious Nicholl Fellowship, a feat rarely accomplished by a screenplay in the sci-fi/horror genre. In 2008, he became a partner in Unconventional Films and finished writing and directing the awesome comedy web series, The Crusader, and is now producing Universal Dead, a new horror/sci-fi web series that he also wrote.

Actor Valerie Perez – Besides appearing alongside D.B. Sweeney and Doug Jones in Universal Dead, Valerie currently stars in the online hit Paula Peril and the upcoming series Slice of Hollywood Life.  She has also made appearances on G4, Entourage, and The Military Channel.  You might have seen her photo work in Femme Fatale magazine and Geek Monthly or her likeness on comic book covers of popular Marvel and DC titles.  Last year she returned to the stage with the Road Theatre company under the direction of Lost’s Sam Anderson.  She has a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience and still does not know what she wants to do when she grows up.

Actor Gary Graham has had many TV and movie roles, including Vulcan Ambassador Soval in Star Trek: Enterprise and Detective Sikes in the TV series Alien Nation. He was also the star of the sci-fi classic Robot Jox. He is currently starring as Dr. David Macavoy in the new horror/sci-fi web series Universal Dead.

Film Method at Icons Event Sat, July 24

July 18, 2010 by cindy  
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Film Method will be apart of an exciting event at this week’s Comic Con in San Diego. The event will take place at the Horton Plaza Event Center and will feature iconic artists of our day from all facets of pop culture. The 30,000-square foot space will be divided into FOUR massive sections, all paying homage to pop culture including Music Concert, Film Screenings, Art Show, and Fashion Experience. The daytime portion will go from 11 am to 5 pm. Admission is $5.00 and open to all ages. The Nighttime portion is from 9 pm to 2 am and Admission is $15.00. The party is 21 & up only. For tickets and more information visit the website at www.westcoastclublife.com/icons or find Icons on Facebook.

Tales from the Con: Day 1

July 31, 2009 by cindy  
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July 31, 2009

The first day at Comic Con after not having attended for over 10 years was a bit eye opening. After arriving at the convention center promptly at 8:50am I realized that the line to get badges began at the road which was right next to the trolley stop and snaked all the way past the marina before heading down the length of the building and upstairs to the registration area. So I basically stepped  right off the trolley and into the badge line. I really didn’t know at that point where the line went, but I suspected it wasn’t going to be pretty. Luckily I had my handy dandy iPod and promptly put in the ear buds which provided me with hours of entertainment, which I needed. I think it was exactly two hours later when I arrived at the computer that spit out my sparkling Silver Pass…. aahhhh… it was a thing of beauty. My faithful friend Travis had been waiting in line since 6:30 that morning, first for his badge and then for a place in line for the Disney panel. Unfortunately for Travis, that was the same line that the Twilight fans were waiting in so it was very looooooong.

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Tales from the Con: Lost Part Two

July 29, 2009 by cindy  
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(continued) The lights dimmed and the famed image of the Lost horizon came up on the projector screen. Slowly all the Season 6 Lost characters faded onto the screen leaving a hole in the middle for a rear facing… John Locke! Woo hoo! Pure awesome. The lights came up and Damon and Carlton strode onto stage like the rock stars they are. They told us that since this is the last year for Lost at Comic Con that they wanted the day to be about fan appreciation. That’s something that’s always been so cool about being apart of the Lost fan base. The guys really care about the fans and go over and above expectations to give us as much cool content as they possibly can. Everything from video games to Oceanic airlines websites to a multitude of mobisodes with extra content for those viewers who will search for it. It’s always special and it’s always spectacular.

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Tales from the Con: Lost Part One

July 28, 2009 by cindy  
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July 28, 2009

This past weekend I attended the Comic Con convention for the first time in many years. I’ve decided to devote blog space on the Film Method site to this incredible Con as a special tribute this week in place of a regularly scheduled podcast recording. I’ll be blogging my Comic Con memoirs for the rest of the week so get ready for 5 awe-inspiring installments of the Tales from the Con.

I think the last time I was at Comic Con was in 1998. I was with my brother Brian, who happens to be a tremendous comic book artist, and he had a blast. I have never really been much of a comic book or sci-fi fan. That being said, I must admit that one of the most influential movie trilogies for me as a budding filmmaker and storyteller was the first Stars Wars movies and now I am a huge Lost fan, go figure.

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