My name is David Maddox and need some help to finish a film. Who am I, exactly, and why should you help me with this?
- I'm an actor/writer living in Los Angeles with a background in film.
- I've worked in various media my whole life both in front of the camera and behind it, in the creative and production side.
- This is a personal project that I would dearly love to finish.
Who Is Michael Half-Life?
Michael Half-Life is the super-hero identity of Michael Hafman, a milquetoast office worker, who may or may not be real, may or may not have super-powers, and enjoys dressing in contrast. He’s one of the many esoteric heroes I’ve created.
What Is This Film and Why Does It Exist?
In 1997, whilst still in film school at San Francisco State University, my first narrative film project featured my best friend in a short, stylized, silent, arty, Super 8mm film... of him running. It was a simple story of a hero versus a villain to save the world, and the black and white imagery looked pretty darn good in most scenes. I did get an A on the project.
A year later, I wanted to play around with the piece, so I decided to make it a dream sequence in a longer narrative. I wanted to shoot on 16mm, which I did, so this involved using my internship at the Film Arts Foundation in SF and their optical printer (basically, an old reflex-action Bolex camera mounted in from of an automated timer with a pull-down mechanism) to re-shoot, frame by frame, the original Super 8mm film onto the 16mm film. After that it was a matter of bringing the cast back, adding a ‘”love interest” into both the original and expanded version, and then shooting.
However, this was all in the days of flatbeds and hot glue splicing. Processing Negative Black and White film on my own was costly after everything was shot. I managed to cut together an Answer Print, but I realized I was going to have to save to get anywhere near finishing, hiring a negative cutter, scoring the piece on Mag Strip and... well, I'm probably getting too technical here, but I just didn't have the money for it.
So I put it aside... and time rolled by. SFSU replaced most of their equipment with video, then digital, and the film sat in a box, travelling with me when I move to LA.
But now technology is has reached such an accessible and available level that, not only can I get the negative film transferred at a reasonable price, but I can even edit, smooth out, and make the entire project a concrete narrative that’s distributable, post-able, and just plain accessible in a way that wasn’t possible when I started!!
Where The Money Goes
Your contributions will allow me to:
- Transfer the film from the original negative to a digital positive for editing
- Pay the original actors (whom I'm still friends with) to film additional, modern day scenes to bookend the narrative
- Compensate the professional artist who's designing the artwork for the film
- Make it worth the while for the composer who's working on a musical score for the silent portions of the film
- Purchase multiple DVD's and boxes for copies
- Provide entry fees to festivals I want to submit the film to
Other Ways You Can Help
If you can't contribute monetarily, I still would appreciate you getting the word out:
- Facebook and Tweet about it!
- Use Indiegogo share tools!
- Tell people who you think may care!
Let's Give Michael Half-Life His Day on Screen!