Four years ago, after filming had ended on the EL MUERTO movie, I knew it would be some time before the film would be ready to be seen. What with all the post-production involved, and lining up a distributor, etc.
Besides anxiously awaiting the completion of the film, I had a thought in my mind that I felt would come true. We would either get a national release of some sort, or at least hit the film festival circuit and then get a DVD release. We ended with latter, the film having been available on DVD since 07. But my thought was this: Once the film was made and then released to screens or DVD and/or cable, it would have made the same cycle every film makes. It gets made, it gets released, and then it is permanently 'out there'. Just look at YouTube for pretty much anything that's ever been recorded, whether it's a movie, cartoon, commercial or some type of filmed footage. Everything is out there in one way or another.
It's like putting a message in a bottle and tossing it into the ocean. Eventually down the line somebody finds it and opens the bottle and reads the message. They'll have some sort of response to whatever was written.
My thought regarding the movie was that once it's done and had it's run, we'll all move on to our next project. The cast and crew of EL MUERTO moved on to their next movie projects, I jumped back on the drawing board.
Well, some two years later, after the film's release on DVD, people are still finding that bottle, and luckily, through the internet, I can hear about it.
A week ago I came across a review for EL MUERTO on a blog called ROSCOE'S DREAMS AND RANDOM THOUGHTS. Roscoe just happened to catch it one night on TV and had a strong, favorable reaction to it. I really admire the passion that he had for the film. Thank you, Roscoe!
A few days ago I received an email from a High School student in Colorado. For his Spanish class, he was assigned a project where he has to choose a Mexican-American artist to profile. Turns out this student had seen my comic book work before ('fascinated by your drawings' he wrote) and wanted to do his report on me. I was more than happy to assist him, and flattered of course. Yesterday they actually watched EL MUERTO in his Spanish class, reporting that "We just finished watching the live action film today. I must say I was very entertained by it. Had a very dark side to it which kept the whole class engaged". Man, that's great to hear. I love how this happened in a Spanish class, too. I wrote him a couple of thoughts on some questions he sent me. Hopefully I'll find out how his report was received.
I bring these two instances up because they just occurred, and within days of each other. But they really demonstrate the 'message in a bottle' scenario I mentioned earlier. Mind you, I have read my share of opinions of people who weren't too happy with their experience watching the film!(Or judging it based only on seeing the trailer, or even just an image!). But a long time ago I finally trained myself to not let those negative comments affect me. Of course, it's my prerogative to let the positive opinions and experiences have an encouraging effect on me!
I'll look forward to the next time someone gets the Movie Muerto Message in the Bottle...