Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Super 8: A fun new format for you and your friends!

I think my obsession with Super 8 began in the early nineties when a small number of horror, cult and generally weirdo arty titles which originated on the format began to appear on home video. Of course today people know the work of Super 8 film himself, Nathan Schiff (Weasels Rip My Flesh, Long Island Cannibal Massacre, etc.) but I had no idea about his films then and I had a very vague idea about all those other cinema punk movements of Kern, Zedd, Jarman, etc. Later on I found some Kenneth Anger VHS titles for a buck at Camelot Records but that was much later on. No, it was really the S8 horror that did it for me, titles like Leif Jonker's Darkness and J.R. Bookwalter's Dead Next Door. On the more eclectic side of things I began to read about films like Nekromantik and Age of Insects in the"underground" section of Film Threat. On the magazine front there was of course that Chris Gore publication I just mentioned along with tiny little rags like Independent Video and even old issues of Cinemagic and Super-8 Filmmaker, two early eighties publications devoted to the Super 8 lifestyle.

So after I did all this reading I decided I wanted in on all this stuff. I began to rummage through garage sales like a lunatic, buying any crappy projector or camera I could find. I ended up with a number of cameras, three projectors, a screen and a viewer which I used only as a prop in FBN because I think most cheap viewer screens suck and are only good for their rewinds. Around this time I also found a gigantic stash of vintage kodak splice tape at this strange arts and crafts store in Burlington, Vermont but by the time I was ready to make this Frankenstein film nearly a decade and a half later all of this crap had broken down or had been extensively broken apart by one of my screwdrivers; also those projectors kept dying on me and instead of buying a new bulb it was just cheaper to find a newer one but it was nightmare for a while - my Monkey Wards projector died, then that Kodak one and then I finally discovered this DeJur El Dorado projector which is still holding up after many years of abuse. So after all these years I took that one projector that survived along with essentially the one Chinon camera which had survived and began to think about production on FBN.

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