Filmmaker Justin McConnell Aims To Help You Survive The CLAPBOARD JUNGLE In New Doc

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Filmmaker Justin McConnell Aims To Help You Survive The CLAPBOARD JUNGLE In New Doc
My friend Justin McConnell makes movies. He does a bevy of other things in the film industry - acquisitions, editing, post-production, festival programming, and what have you - but he really likes making movies. But because he is an independent filmmaker this can sometimes prove to be quite challenging. 

The first time I ever wrote about a project of his that was nearing development was The Eternal back in 2008, which still has not been made. I do not like digging at old wounds and Justin has gone on to make The Collapsed and Skullworld and has been adapting the novel Kane by Douglas Borton to the big screen (Borton has since released his novel as an eBook under the pen-name Michael Prescott). But The Eternal still has not been made to this day. And Justin's story is not the only one. I know other independent filmmakers here in Toronto and around the world who are diligently working hard to get projects off the ground. And it is hard going. 

Which is why McConnell's next project, Clapboard Jungle: Surviving The Independent Film Business, may prove to be indispensable to independent filmmakers facing the same uphill battle. He has been quietly working away at the doc for a few months now -- I've been aware that he was working on 'something' since July -- and he is ready to announce it to the world. 

Although quietly in production since February 2014 (under the working title 'Slate & Game'), the new feature-length documentary Clapboard Jungle: Surviving the Independent Film Business was officially announced today. Directed by Justin McConnell (Skull World, Mark of Kane, The Collapsed), the film is intended as a survival guide for the modern independent filmmaker, following one person's journey as they navigate the business, and supported by interviews with dozens of notable personalities throughout the industry.

Production will continue until Fall 2015, with a targeted release of mid-2016. In total 56 interviews have been obtained so far, including Tom Holland (Child's Play, Fright Night), Dick Miller (Gremlins), John McNaughton (Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer), Brian Yuzna (Re-Animator), Todd Brown (producer, The Raid), Aaron Moorhead & Justin Benson (Spring), Tom Savini (legendary SFX artist), Sid Haig (The Devil's Rejects), Travis Stevens (producer, Starry Eyes), Corey Moosa (producer, Margin Call), Garrick Dion (producer, Nightcrawler), Noboru Iguchi (The Machine Girl), Brian Trenchard-Smith (Turkey Shoot), Steve Kostanski (Manborg), James Lorinz (Frankenhooker), George Mihalka (My Bloody Valentine), and dozens more.

So McConnell continues to work away at Clapboard Jungle while he does all those other things he does to survive in the independent film world. Darryl Shaw, another independent filmmaker friend of ours here in Toronto is co-producing Justin's project.

Justin has even threatened to interview me for some strange reason. It would mean a step up for me personally from from talking head on a DVD extra for season 4.5 of BSG to talking head in an actual feature. But who are we kidding? Destined for the cutting room floor am I. Especially when I am competing with the likes of our handsome lord and master, Todd Brown, for screen time. 
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