HEADCASE: A LOOK INSIDE
This 12 part (5+ hour long) webseries was conceived as part of the indiegogo campaign for my debut feature film, Headcase. What started out with humble intentions eventually ballooned into an exhaustive and hilarious account of three novice filmmakers mounting an ambitious $50,000 feature film. It's an incredibly candid "soap opera" style series that features 30 interviews with the cast and crew, each providing their own unique perspective and valuable advice for other up and coming filmmakers.
- 2013 | 12 episodes | 300+ minutes
- Featuring interviews with Anthony Greene, Alex Jordan, Ken Simpson, Lara Amersey, Alex Dacev, Leon Bearman, Saffron Cassaday & more...
- Written, Produced, Directed & Edited by Ken Simpson
Reviews & Testimonials
"Epic and truly an inside look at low budget film making. If you make films or want to, this series is a must see!" - Soak Studios
"Save your money on film school and just watch these witty and insightful vids! Definitely a must watch for anyone starting their first feature production or otherwise." - Russell Challenger, Filmmaker
"This is, without a doubt, one of the best "Behind the Scenes" series I have ever seen. Every episode was both useful, insightful and most of all thoroughly enjoyable. I only wish I could have made it to the premiere of the film. Anyone involved in indie filmmaking MUST SEE THIS!!" - Steve McAleavy, Filmmaker/Editor
"Even having not seen the final piece, I loved every minute of Headcase: A Look Inside. Serving as a fantastic deconstruction of the to-dos and not-to-dos of ultra-low-budget film making, it's equal parts film school, online tutorial, and schadenfreude. It’s clear director Ken Simpson is an indie force of nature - a loaded gun ready to fire. Even if all you take away from this is 50k-is-just-not-enough-to-make-a-movie, it's more than worth your time. He's created an amazing document that'll both inspire, and send a chill down your indy-filmmaker spine." - Mike Roberts, Animator / Director
Renting / Purchasing
You can rent / purchase the entire 12 part series by clicking the image below:
Episode 1: A First Time For Everything
In this premiere episode, we introduce you to writer Anthony Greene, director Ken Simpson and producer Alex Jordan. We find out where they were in their lives just prior to starting Headcase, how it was that they all met, what made them commit to making this ambitious micro-budget feature film and why they settled on a budget of $50,000.
Episode #2: Auditioning, Casting, Rehearsing…Oh my!
With their core production team in place, Anthony, Ken and Alex enlisted the help of casting director Lara Amersey to conduct auditions. In this episode, they discuss the merits and potential pitfalls of using untested actors in lead roles as well as the surprising amount of luck and intuition that plays a part when casting for a non-union feature film. From novices and reluctant actors to hopeful stars and seasoned character performers, this episode introduces you to the principal cast of Headcase!
Episode #3: Advice for making a $50,000 film
“A novice filmmaker has $50,000 burning a hole in their pocket and they want to make a feature film, what's your advice to them?” That's the question we asked the cast and crew of Headcase to help any hapless, misguided poor souls who should want to follow in our footsteps! Seriously though, it is entirely possible to make an ambitious feature film for 50 grand and the advice of our team will enlighten, inspire and possibly even surprise you!
Episode #4: The Low Cost of High Production Value
What exactly is production value? Where does it come from and more importantly, how do you get it? Director Ken Simpson kicks off this episode with his opinion as to how easy it is to achieve and why it has virtually nothing to do with large production budgets or high-end gear. Other key crew members chime in and offer tips and tricks for maximizing what little money you might have for your film. As an adjunct to this episode, the cast and crew discuss their beliefs as to why Canadian films tend to look so…well, Canadian.
Episode #5: Leon & Zorro's War Stories
In one of the funniest episodes of our series, we catch up with two of the most popular Headcase cast members: Leon Bearman and Zorro. These two troopers put up with a hell of a lot while making our film and we've asked them to recount their most painful memories for your viewing pleasure!
Episode #6: Authorship / Ownership
Far be it from us to shy away from contentious subject matter! In this special round table episode, Headcase writer/financier/star Anthony Greene sits down with director Ken Simpson and producer Alex Jordan to discuss the controversial subject of “Authorship vs. Ownership” or as we like to phrase the question, “Just whose movie is this anyway?”
Episode #7: The Crew of Headcase
The title says it all! This episode focuses on the young men and women (many of whom had never been on a film set before) who really made Headcase… the crew! We also delve into the dreadful, infamous and (in retrospect) hilarious mishap that later became known as “The car tow day.”
Episode #8: The Director / Cinematographer Relationship
This episode gets dark and we're not just talking about the lighting! Director Ken Simpson and cinematographer Alex Dacev reveal their early frustrations while working as technicians in the Toronto film industry. We learn about the difficulties they faced individually at the outset of Headcase and how those growing pains ultimately matured into a flourishing, creative partnership.
Episode #9: The Editing & VFX of Headcase
In this “tutorial style” episode, Headcase director / editor Ken Simpson takes us through several problematic scenes where creative solutions in the editing suite allowed him to maintain a clear narrative structure. He also demonstrates how by learning the basics of tracking, rotoscoping and compositing he was able to accomplish over 130 visual effects shots for the film all by himself.
While this episode is very technical in its presentation, the core concepts Ken explores are invaluable for budding filmmakers eager to add new dimensions to their skill set.
Episode #10: The Sound of Headcase
In this special audio-only episode of our series, we cover everything relating to the sound of our $50,000 feature film. From on set acquisition to ADR, composing and sound mixing. We even discuss the tedious and complex task of sourcing and securing music licenses for very little money.
Episode #11: Selling Headcase PT.1
Headcase began production in April of 2008, and this episode fast forwards 4 years later to catch up with the filmmakers to find out where the film stands and where Anthony Greene, Ken Simpson and Alex Jordan are in their lives. As the three begin to enter the ever-changing world of marketing and distribution, Ken sits down for a conversation with fellow director Chris Power (Long Pigs) in hopes of gleaning some wisdom regarding the pitfalls that first time filmmakers face when selling their movie.