Silicone Valley

August 10, 2007

I’m on an airplane right now. Spiderman XXVII is playing silently on the overhead video screen and looks like it is being projected through 5 pairs of pantyhose. Just after takeoff flight attendants moved up the aisles asking, “Would you like an entertainment device? Would you care to use an entertainment device?” For a moment I thought they were offering vibrators to women. 

I just finished 3 days of press and promotion for Delirious in Los Angeles. The film opens there August 17. Gestation generously arranged for me to stay at the Collagen Gables Hotel and all the press was done there as well. I started with 3 phone interviews then went into a series of ‘roundtables’ with Alison Lohman. This is where you sit believe it or not at a round table with about 12 journalists. Some of them ask you questions. Some of them don’t say a word. Despite her apprehension about doing press Alison was very present and articulate. Gina Gershon came in for the day and did a slew of press by herself.

Then I did 15 TV interviews in about 45 minutes. They were all done in one room set up with a cameraman and a sound man. The poster of Delirious stood on an easel locked strategically behind the chair I sat in. The journalists came in one after the other with their pages of questions.

There were two other films having press days at the same time. Posters for their films leaned against the wall ready to be slipped into place when their “talent” came in. Each journalist was allotted 4 minutes. In the middle of each interview the cameraman would reach over and tap the journalist lightly on the shoulder. Even though I knew it was the signal for the journalist to start “wrapping it up” it always startled me as it seemed like the tap was intended to wake the person up.

From my position in the chair all I saw was a series of rapidly changing faces. One woman from a college web outlet stomped in, sat down and announced, “Hey, dude, we’re totally cutting edge and outside the box and just pushing the envelope so feel free, man. Feel free. Do whatever you want.”

I said, “Like what, take a leak in the corner?” She clapped her hands in delight. “Yeah, dude! Go for it totally go for it!” She seemed acutely disappointed when I didn’t.

The faces kept shifting. One older guy never looked up from his list of questions. At one point he asked, “So, why did you make this movie?” I said, “Nooky in the morning makes you sleepy.” He said, “I see. Now tell me, what’s your next project?”

Had a break around 5. Went back to my room, fell on the bed and immediately began hallucinating. Only then realized I hadn’t eaten anything since 9. I had a screening coming up at 7 so I went down to the outdoor restaurant and had a hamburger and a beer. The restaurant was spread around the hotel pool. Though the sun was drifting lower in the jelloblue sky it was still hot and a lot of people were spread out on lounges and standing in the water. Most of them appeared very young, very white and very devoted to ankle tattoos. The only people of any actual color were the Hispanic pool attendants spreading towels out on the lounges.

The beer went right to my head. Everything started looking dusty pink and gold. A young woman stood and walked slowly to the edge of the pool where she paused in a brilliant glare glinting off the water. She wore a thread of a white bikini, sunglasses and a fraying straw cowboy hat. She glanced down at her chest. Many other people did too. Exploding straight out from her toothpick thin body were breasts the size and consistency of bowling pins. When she took another step and tottered slightly I thought this was the reason; her breasts had caused her to lose her balance. But as she continued carefully down to the shallow end I saw she was wearing a pair of clear plastic high heels that gleamed in the sun as if they were glass.

The word-of-mouth screening of Delirious in Santa Monica was full. In fact there was some overflow that prompted streaming the film into an additional theater. Gina Gershon did the Q&A with me. The response from the audience was so direct and supportive I think it hit me like two or three martinis. People seemed not only to get the film, but also to be emotionally affected by it. One woman asked, “Did you wear those jeans out of respect for Toby tonight?”

My jeans had a huge hole in the knee. In the film Toby wears a pair of jeans with an almost identical hole. I almost fell on the floor laughing. I didn’t want this room full of complete strangers to leave.

Had a drink with some friends back at the Collagen Gables then halfway through my second beer I realized I was wasted. Staggered up to my room and crashed.

And now I’ve just been informed by a flight attendant over the PA that the “seat belt sign has been eliminated” and the plane is starting its descent into JFK. It will land around 11:45. With luck I’ll be home by 1:30. I start the NY press tomorrow at 10 am.

Hey Sarah,
been a little kkrraazzed the past few days. Don’t give up on the film opening near you. This film has struggled mightily and will continue to do so.
Yes, I will do a commentary. I enjoy them. There will also be a whole bunch of great extras on the DVD which should come out early next year: Steve Buscemi playing guitar and singing a song to his homeless boy, Michael Pitt, funny scenes cut for time etc.
Stay tuned.
Don’t you just love flying? But now that you mention it, I think it would be a lot more fun if entertainment devices were, in fact, vibrators.
Press sounds like a whirlwind. It’s funny because when you see the interviews on TV or whatever, everything looks to calm and calculated. Not at all like you’ve just sat through a dozen interviews in half an hour.
Delirious is not coming to theaters anywhere remotely near me. I’m really not surprised, but will look forward to the DVD release. Do you know anything about it? Will you be doing a commentary? Because you should do a commentary. 😉

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Independent Filmmaker & Musician