Nut Bucket Films

Clarity and Success

In Uncategorized on June 16, 2011 at 12:02 pm



CLOSING DOORS, here we come


view from the champagne cruise


THE CREW, Lije, Jai, Tyler, Matt, Joy, and Stacia


CLOSING DOORS, another sold out theatre. thanks LEAVE


“Now I know why you do what you do”, that’s what someone very special said to me this last weekend.  Words like help take it to the next level. I got to share this last weekend with some new friends, some old family, and some old friends.

I am going to forget about the business side of it, for now. Forget about the fact that we met some remarkable filmmakers and actors and were surrounded by such a high caliber of films.  Just gonna try to make it real.

This experience was more than that. It was an opportunity to meet some fantastic new people and share my film with them and them to share theirs’. And throughout that whole process party our asses off.

Not sure I know where to start. After a delayed flight we made it to Grand Rapids airport where we hopped on a bus to Saugatuck, MI. Right on the bus we all start chatting, Stacia, Joy, Matt, Pilaro, Kendall, Tyler and more. Instant connections and stories, right to a champagne cruise, followed by a bus ride to the Dunes Gay and Lesbian resort to check in. Oh and my girlfriend ended up driving the bus because she was the most capable. Do the math.

Here we go Shaggy!

First thing on the ferry, I met this guy, Mike Hagerty, and it turns out he produced the film Leave that we, Closing Doors, were opening for. Turns out Leave ends up being one of the hottest films at the festival. And it was. Very moving film starring Rick Gomez and Frank John Hughes. Leave ended up getting a third showing on Sunday, and so did Closing Doors. I met the programmer throughout the weekend and thanked her for such prime screening spots. Hagerty and I were in constant contact, locating each other for the next mixer or party, and I feel like I met a guy I will know for a long time. Thanks Mike!

That’s just a taste. It was like that the entire weekend. Meeting new person after person. People that we just won’t forget after four days of craziness.

Besides the people from the festival, I got to see my long time Uncle Bubba, Aunt Colleen, Uncle Tim, and Aunt Lori. I also got to see one of my best pals who came over from Detroit and let’s not forget my mother who came down from Traverse City. We definitely had some fun but the best part is hearing the solid things family can say about what you are doing. Your career, ya know? Sometimes I doubt if all the hard work I am doing means shit. Then you get to share it with people. This experience says it all.

Family came and left. We watched movies, reconnected, and partied. Except it was only Sunday and we had another day of the festival. I was out of gas. Seriously. This place was putting a hurt on me. But off to the pool again for another day mingling and getting loose.

I am not trying to make it sound like this festival was a giant party cuz it was. But I think the idea of it is this. It’s an opportunity to let the guard down. To let everyone get on a level playing field. To take away from all the typical festival bullshit where everyone is trying to meet someone to get something from them. Here it was like we were meeting each other to have a good time and just support good film and good people. Maybe I am wrong. I am not trying to force too much of an opinion, I am just trying to emphasize that when you put a bunch of talented people in a place like Waterfront, magic happens. Cheese. But true.

And other magic. Doing the “worm” on the dance floor at the closing party and singing “House of Pain” out loud. How do I remember those lyrics?

I have some quotes from the weekend that I put in my phone. Not sure who said them, I didn’t think of that at the time. And if I do know who said them, I am leaving them out.

“Let’s not talk about yesterday until next week”

“If you are gonna drowned and die, you wanna watch it”

“I’m a welder by profession, unless you need me to weld something”

“Great short film bro!”

Closing Doors was definitely the best short film at the festival, and in all honesty probably one of the best short films I’ve seen at that festival throughout the time I’ve been attending. Great Stuff! Now hurry up and make another one so you can come back to Saugatuck!”

“I didn’t know that a short film could have such a dramatic impact in such a short amount of time”

“I have a class A license, I can drive the bus”

“Heard you streaked?” “And got busted, but we’re doing it again tonight”

“F#$%in’ love nut bucket”

“I feel your passion for the film industry. My eyes have been opened”

“You are the spitting image of me, having fun, laughing, and usually getting anything I wanted…your mind is a very powerful tool, use it…appreciate what you have”

I am going to end on that one. Clarity. The whole weekend defines it. It also shows what has gotten me here and what has slowed me down. I needed this. It was truly a special moment and I am very glad I got to share it with each and every f#$%ing person that I did. And thanks to the #1 guest of the weekend. You know who you are.


Lije and NUT BUCKET FILMS (this name is defining itself, everyday)

Keep an eye out for some of these films I saw:

Moment of Truth (nice work Crowley and cast!), Vaccine (fantastic and eye-opening!), Leave (extremely well done guys!)

And some that I didn’t:

The Frankenstein Brothers, Cataplexy, The Cross-Stitch, Finding Jenua

And so many more from Waterfront HERE.

Special Thanks: Dana, Dori, and Hopwood Dupree, Derek, Edi, Kori, Christine, and Auston. You all really made our weekend. And thanks to everyone else that I missed.


check the Lake Michigan sweatshirt


my special guest



closing night party...says it all


love you Bubba



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