I've had the great pleasure of knowing Jim "Meats" Meier for a little over 15 years now. (If you don't know him by name yet, you owe it to yourself to check-out this phenomenal artist's work right this minute: Meats' Market). I hired him while I was working as the Art Director of a screen printing shop, and was blown away by his outrageous ability with the airbrush. I saw him latch onto Photoshop the minute we got a copy, and he's never looked back. The world of 3D opened up for him in a way few digital artists can claim, and his style is wholly unique. (Not to mention much admired -- reading some of his fan-boy posts even made me blush!!!)
Back in 1994, a local radio station ran a promotional contest for an upcoming concert with a band called White Zombie. You were to create a video no longer than 7 minutes, featuring the station's logo, the band's music ... and it was to be as gory as possible (the band, as its name implies, has a not-so-subtle penchant for all things macabre).
This came at a very opportune time: I had been developing some film projects and had been invited to pitch them to Roger Corman's studio, but lacked the fund-age to fly out to his offices in California ... and part of the grand prize in this video contest were 2 tickets to L.A. I had to do it!!! I have some experience in special effects make up, and (as mentioned previously on this blog) had developed a low-cost technique for quick (yet disturbingly realistic) blood-'n-guts using home-made play dough tinted with food coloring for fake 'skin' and Karo syrup-based fake 'blood.' (A Quick Side-Note: I had a couple of opportunities to show examples of my work to professional make up artists who were stunned to learn it was only play dough ... it looks terrific initially, but doesn't last long as it dries-out quickly and tends to slop-off when you move around too much -- you get what you pay for, right? Here's a quick example of a burn make up using the play dough & syrup trick:)
Back to the video contest ... there was only 1 discouraging fact: I heard about the contest on a Thursday evening, and the deadline was in only one week. To make matters worse, I had already committed to work all weekend long and was going on vacation the following Thursday, literally leaving me 3 days to do the entire thing.
Luckily for me, Jim and his entire house full of roommates were game to participate & willing to stay awake with me for 48 hours straight on Monday and Tuesday to shoot the video (when we weren't working). I edited the film all day Wednesday and then dropped it off on my way out of town on Thursday!!!
And guess what?
(Unfortunately, after using my plane tickets and nervously making my way to Mr. Corman's office with my portfolio clutched tightly in profusely sweating hands, I learned there had been a family emergency that morning and that he wouldn't be able to attend me ... sigh. I wound up pitching instead to some low-level wannabe who actually claimed that Corman -- "King Of The 'B' Horror Movies" -- was no longer making horror movies. Okay, yeah, right ...)
It's been 14 years, and Jim has been asking me recently if I had a copy of the film (entitled Crunch) somewhere he could watch it again (presumably for old times sake). Well Jimmy Z, here it is:
DISCLAIMER: As I mentioned above, the whole point of this video was to be as gory as possible, so if you don't like that kind of thing ... best not to watch it, all right?