Nut Bucket Films

I wrestled an alligator…Florida recap

In Uncategorized on March 29, 2011 at 9:11 am

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I am back in LA. Yup. Got here late Sunday night and have been a bit swamped with catching up. I didn’t want to sell the Florida trip short so I am gonna recap Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday we hit our final spring training game. Verlander was pitching for the Tigers and we matched up against the Phillies. It was a good day. 85 degrees and sunny and we were back in Lakeland.

Right when we got to the ballpark we notice a crowd gathered around what looked to be a dang alligator. It was! Crazy. It was a bunch of kids and me all trying to hold it. I got a pretty good pic with a little kid in the back ground who looked like he was about to shit himself. Only in Florida.

We won the game. The pitching was great and we won in the eighth with a two-run homer. I got some sweet pics of the players too. I just want to say a couple things about spring training baseball. You HAVE to go sometime if you are a baseball fan. The people are so cool. Older and laid back and knowledge for days. It is so intimate and the worst seats are better than some of the best at a real ballpark. Oh, and all the handicapped stalls in the bathrooms have their own sink. That holds true in all of Florida. And traffic lights take FOREVER.

So we finished the game and drove back to Tampa. Tonight was the big night. Florida premiere of CLOSING DOORS. We were playing at Cinebistro, a super classy theatre where you can eat and drink during the film and a great bar in the lobby where people dressed very nicely pre-party.

Another sold-out showing. So far with three screenings this month the response has been amazing. We were hands down the best film that night and I am not just saying that. It really feels good to show the project and have it enjoyed by an audience. The only effed up part of the whole thing was them announcing Justin’s name instead of mine for the film. WTF! How do you screw something like that up? Last year someone mispronounces my name at a festival. This year it’s the total wrong name. Get your shit together people. Two things you really should not screw up.

I wonder why we keep getting denied from the big festivals like SXSW and Sundance and Cleveland and Atlanta. I need to go and really see what they are showing. Lame-o. Cuz so far there has not been a ton of competition.

We hit the New World Brewery for the after party. It was a sweet local spot with live music and a cool little scene. Hung out with Shana a little more and said our thanks and were on our way.

We were starving so we found a hot dog stand in the middle of a parking lot by the hotel. Best dang dog I ever ate. There are many reasons for that. Turns out in the morning it might have been the worst.

We had one more thing to do for the festival on Sunday morning. A champagne brunch back at Cinebistro. I was looking forward to that! Eggs, bacon, brunch ya know?

They gave us frigging pasta! WTF! Not the food I was hoping for. And it was a panel on Florida filmmaking which probably would have been interesting except for this one guy talked for so long I wanted to stab myself in the eye. I really wanted the cheesecake for dessert so we toughed it out. Torture I tell you.

I keep dogging certain aspects of the Fest but over all it was sweet. I hung with Tom Berenger for a minute and a mob of teenage girls wanted photos with me after our screening. There’re two positives.

This is funny. Before we left for brunch I called the front desk. We wanted/needed a late check out. I said we were with the festival and had to run to a breakfast thing but would be back at 1pm and could we get a late checkout? She replied “yes we can give you til 1pm”. Great news. We were so tired and lazy we didn’t want to have to pack it up before brunch. A second later the phone rang. “Mr. Sarki, I didn’t realize you were friends of Don, you can have until 2pm”. Who the hell is Don? Justin said, “Shula”. Don Shula? The coach of the Dolphins? The guy that has a steakhouse in the hotel? That’s the only Don it could be. Sweet! Now please pay for our room Don. So freaking weird but we will take it.

I ran into the same person I sat next to on the flight on the way there on the way home. She asked me how the weekend was and I did the same. Both had a friggin’ blast. Thanks Florida, Shana, Justin, GIFF, Tigers, and most of all Don.

Upward and onward,
Lije

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