Hey folks, Harry here... Every now and again, fate steps in. Tonight was the big 20th Anniversary of the Austin Film Society PARTY. There's a 20th Anniversary book that they've printed up, that I took part in, by way of an article regarding Quentin Tarantino and the influence of his festivals (sponsored by the benevolent AFS) have had upon the local film scene, myself and the Alamo Drafthouse. As a result - I was essentially required to be on display. Mind you, nobody forced me to be there, and certainly I love the Austin Film Society - but... gigantic cocktail parties with tons and tons and tons of folks... there's a claustrophobic intensity that can occur at an event that's advertising free Bar-B-Que and Beer deep in the heart of Texas. I knew hundreds would attend... I swear it felt like thousands. And according to Rebecca of AFS - "Millions joined the Austin Film Society" tonight. So rah rah.
Had a bit of chatter with Richard Linklater about A SCANNER DARKLY - which he has a twinkle in his eyes when he talks about it, they're still finishing the animation and doing sound tweaks on it, but he seemed so enthused about his summer date for the film, I tried begging him to see the film. I was just about to offer head in an incredibly public place - when wouldn't ya know it, he got called to the mike to do some well-wishing to the Society members... He's also told me that FAST FOOD NATION is coming along great and at the same time he's working on the script for his next project - along with a Criterion Edition of DAZED & CONFUSED!!! That's the shit right there!
Honestly... I figured that was about all the news that I'd gather from this event. There's all types of film folks all around, and I'm sure there was news just waiting to be gathered, but I was consoling folks that were saddened at the passing of PEDAZO CHUNK, folks inquiring about my projects, fans of the site that wanted to chat - and then folks that had films in various stages of wanting to be in production, were in production or that had wrapped and happened to be in a handy viewable DVD state that was conveniently inserted in their back pocket. And that was fine, wonderful folks were met. Great time shared with all. I sipped my one glass of red wine and my water bottle and passed up the cake and bbq and beer - and hungered for my Yoplait. Heh.
So... I know... I said I had proof of the existence of GOD. Now, I know... it isn't a crown of bloodsoaked thorns that can raise the dead when placed on a cadaver's body. It isn't a stick that can cause the seas to part and the ground to harden. There was no burning bush with something on its mind. Rather... it's something far more spectacular.
This rather unassuming fellow approached me at the very end of this soiree, and he introduced himself and we began to talk about some of the documentaries he's produced and then in the small talk where I asked him from whence he found his beginnings - he tells a tale of being classmates with Dave Borthwick - the director of the magnificent THE SECRET ADVENTURES OF TOM THUMB, turns out this wonderful chap had shot the behind the scenes for this fantastic film, and my natural instinct says, "What's HE up to these days?" Honestly - I didn't expect an answer. Or something that I would literally lose my fucking mind for. But in the most low key, unexcited manner known to man - this apostle says:
"This is kinda funny, it's sort of an Austin project, he's in Bristol making a stop motion animated feature film adaptation of GILBERT SHELTON'S FABULOUS FURRY FREAK BROTHERS."
My heart skipped 7 beats. But in the beat of a hummingbird's wings, I began a line of aggressive questioning. I remember hearing something about Film Roman doing an animated FFFB film, but I also remember Shelton commenting that it was dead. He tells me that they just brought on Dave Alex Riddett to shoot the film (he's the genius that shot CHICKEN RUN and THE CURSE OF THE WERE-RABBIT as well as A CLOSE SHAVE and CREATURE COMFORTS!) At this point I begin vibrating my molecules so I could travel forward in time to see this work. More so - apparently Gilbert is literally working right along side them to make the film work. He tells me the stop motion models are utterly fantastic and wished he had them on his cel phone so he could show me, and at this point - rational thought is just not really with me. I trade contact info - ask him to be sure to tell Dave to send me some great stills and the scoop on the film as soon as humanly possible.
The party ended, and I came home. I was here... oh... a blink of an eye before I went searching for FABULOUS FURRY FREAK BROTHERS film information online. I found that the company making it is called CELLULOID DREAMS and that their website was Here and after decoding their Flash site, I discovered this glorious proof of the project's existence:
GRASS ROOTS: THE MOVIE - - - Adapted from the comics books THE FABULOUS FURRY FREAK BROTHERS by Gilbert Shelton By the director of THE MAGIC ROUNDABOUT & THE SECRET ADVENTURES OF TOM THUMB For once the Brothers find themselves with plenty of cash and some righteous weed. But this is no ordinary marijuana: it's been genetically modified as part of a sinister government plot to take over the dope market. When Norbert the Narc, secret agent and rock-jawed defender of the law, decency and the American way, accidentally hands some of the prototype weed to the Brothers and they discover its bizarre side-effects, the feds are soon hot on their trail and the boys have to leave town fast. Now is the time to fulfil their long cherished dream of retiring to grow marijuana in a remote spot in the country. But what is going on in the Secret Government Research Centre just the other side of the hill? Surely the Brothers can't have chosen to hide right next to the very place where the genetically modified 'product' is being tested... Can they?