New English Feature Film Idea Thanks to Amazon JP Experience

Konnichiwa Amazon JP

I believe it was the director Tom Gormican, who once said that focus on features enough and you just might end up in Japan. Of course I had no idea what that meant, while I was busy with That Awkward Moment and had no idea what a feature film was anyway. Then years later, I did end up in Japan giving a presentation about making films to a audience that didn’t know much English. Amongst the many, many fun trips I have had. Japan is right there on the golden book of mostly precious and even awkward moments in my life. In some ways, it was the pinnacle of my career which is now nothing but a shadow of the achievements I made back then. In a way that is a really good thing, because at least I can look back and think that those were the days. That’s the whole point of making movies, isn’t it. To which the answer goes – “Oh yeah.” and nothing more.

Sakura was blooming and the fresh spring air was in my head. Moving through the streets, thinking I was something big. Indeed I had finally made it and people were willing to listen to the famous ‘Renan‘ guy which was difficult to pronounce for the Japanese. Probably it had something to do with the fact that l and r are pronounced the same, which is some weird pronunciation I have no idea off up until today. Anyway, Japan is filled with big companies and one of them include the famous Amazon online franchise. This electronic commerce heaven there is simply known as Amazon Japan which came and took the country by storm. Being utterly American as I am, it simply woke up my curiosity. As well as having the huge funding that I did back then, making a huge purchases to my hotel room was definitely not a problem in any way. On the contrary, I felt like I was obligated to spend some because after all that ‘some’ that had been created was largely thanks to me. So I went on my laptop and typed and was astonished.

Of course my intial response also had something to do with the fact that the site was completely in Japanese. There was a button that said English on the page, but hitting it would do nothing. I thought that this is some kind of a curse for foreigners who want to come to the country to purchase all their wonderful goods. I wouldn’t have any of that and became even more determined to pass through this portal of strange Japanese goods. There must be something very precious hidden inside and that’s why I have difficulties accessing the website was what I thought at the time. But there is was, like a blessing from the sky: “Amazon JP English” it was titled and instructed me to make purchases with Amazon Japan in the most wonderful language of English. Well known amongst the Americans who can hardly speak if of course. Well, after finding the right link I was in and registered to the service. But then, the how to article further even guided me to translate the whole site, including product descriptions. Now this was wonderful and I couldn’t wait to get started before my meetings were due in central Tokyo.

This incident had the resources for another charming comedy as I started ordering anything that looked interesting. From technological gadgets that I had no idea what they did, to comic animation figurines. I ended up with a suitcase filled, of stuff that I was not so sure if I really wanted. It got me thinking about how modern society is filled with mindless consumerism and how Amazon is a huge part of that. Or wait a minute! Perhaps I was one of the very important parts in this puzzle, perhaps I was contributing to the fact that this world was full of useless stuff. Even better, I could make my next movie out of it, in classic comedy style but with a subject that touches us all dearly. It’s that empty feeling inside of us that wants to be filled with goods. Yet no matter how much you fill it with possessions, that feeling never goes away.

So it’s not just the evil construction of society but us who are acting out to a problem with the wrong solution. Which is not a permanent solution at any rate. It is something totally temporary and a loosing battle. This “loosing dilemma” would make a fantastic full length feature film, which of course could be filled with awkward moments. The ideas are just coming in, how I can turn this industry to work for ourselves. Helping ourselves help ourselves. Now that would be a dream and having mindlessly shopped at Amazon in Japan, I have first hand experience. And if it weren’t for the JP Amazon guide in English, I probably would never had this experience.

So whoever you ‘Elf‘ guy are, thanks so much for the brilliant idea!

Awkward regards,
Renan Leggo

Feel Free, Feel Awkward

Call it God

I know it’s a strange theme for a blog. But the movie taught me something precious about life, not just as an actor but a real human being. Can you feel those moments in life, when you have felt hugely embarrassed. Those moments are precious. Especially when they happened to you as a kid. I mean, you could say that a huge amount of people in this world are traumatized because they had so called awkward or bad experiences in their life. Stuff that you just want to forget and eventually end up burring deep in your mind.

Then you become an adult and wonder why you are such a looser. It must have been because you never forgave yourself for the ridiculous thing you did. Or much worse, the shit that others did to you. Either way it doesn’t matter, what matters is that you forgive those people, including yourself. It’s a huge feeling of freedom once you start to understand, such a simple and brilliant code of life. This is not mathematics, it’s just a fact that probably the vast majority of us are crazy. I feel like an onion, trying to peel myself within a horror story. Once all the layers are torn down, all is left is me. But then you realize that me is a word and there’s nothing left. Except something that’s a whole new surprise for you.

Call it enlightenment, call it god. You need to let go of your face to be truly free. And freedom of course is equal to happiness. That much math I will give you guys. I was never good at maths, but I was really good at fucking things up. All the spice of my career, my brilliance and that road or path that I still take every day to become a more free, a more versatile silly human being.

Respect to all of you mother fuckers,
Renan Leggo

Is The Golden Mask Dynasty Going to be a Movie

Awkward or not, life needs to be lived and experienced. Just like in the movies, like in Hollywood except, for real. A part of that realization, is to make things real. Yeah, not everyone can do these fun things but we need to get together with the folks that have nothing to do with movies in-order to make great movies. So that’s why good friends of mine in China have had a brilliant idea to make the Golden Mask Dynasty Show into a movie. Something that has been running in my mind for a long time now. Naturally, I am taking the opportunity of presenting this idea through Just Get Horizontal, just in-case it will take root.

As has been evident, I am a big fan of theatre and China has been a really refreshing ball game. And not just the awkward way, although those stories do suggest a lot of it. Going to all the amazing spectacles, there have been a handful that I though WOW. Those I have earlier mentioned on the blog, such as the Chaoyang Theater and the Shanghai Circus World venues. While they are stuff that you simply cannot miss on any trip to China, there is more. I have only uncovered a fraction of the vast range of shows that are offered. Not all of them are good but some of them are more than brilliant.

In the case of this golden mask story, I was impressed from the beginning. Without having much of a background for musical it was a totally new experience for me. Just like our movies, they shared common ground. This in itself was one of the most surprising things to me, having never even given thought to something “musical”. So at the end of the day, I ended up driving through the crowded streets of Beijing and managed to find the OCT Theatre. I was just absorbing all the dance, the choreography, stunts, effects and a beautiful story that was situated in an ancient Chinese dynasty.

It all seemed so familiar to me, as well as exotic. What was this feeling inside of me. It was that I wanted to make a movie out of it. Having the perfect story line and atmosphere for the big screen, the challenge was met. How to get the Chinese to collaborate in such a big project. These experiences are just a handful in the history of the Hollywood blockbusters. Perhaps, it was time to try again with something revolutionary.

So all the producers and idea-filled people who are reading this. Go to Beijing for your work trip or whatever. And head to the OCT Theatre venue and tell them: ‘One ticket for the Golden Mask Dynasty Show please”. And if you can make the extra effort, say that in Chinese! :)

See you next time awkward friends,
Renan Leggo

Now Showing, Awkward Film!

Film Collection

I could see a whole line of heads rolling as the movie started with a big slip of a banana and head crushed into the pavement. Yes, it was going to be one of those awkward movies, again. As for myself, I couldn’t be more exited. I had gathered a bunch of guys to watch a silly movie with much attention to laugh at my ass. If you know what I mean, probably you are a human being that actually lives on this earth.

But I do understand why some people have had enough and it’s not because of quality, it’s because of quantity. And quantity we have all had enough. Sometimes, it’s just crazy the amount of research you have to do about a movie to decide if it’s worth a watch or not. Where has the movie industry gone to! But there is a problem with the problem. And that is blaming movies that go into a category that have a lot of crap ones in that very category. And one of them is of course, comedy and “awkward stuff” that I love so much. If you just grab the first funny comedy movie from hollywood, you will most likely fail. Great precision and care has to be taken into entertaining your life with this stuff. You need memorable moments, with friends preferably.

If you take your friends to see a bad movie, maybe you will no longer have them in the end. And that would be a much more of an awkward moment than actually watching a film of that genre. Getting horizontal wont probably help you there either, unless the friend in question is female.

So what I am trying to say, that let’s stop naming people, and movies of that matter. Instead, let’s do the research and face the fact that it’s not going to be easy. That’s why we have film critics, of which most are probably not suitable anyway but. You know where I am going with this… to a point that has no end!

Let’s enjoy a good film guys. Once and for all.

Leggo R.

Chaoyang Theater Wins Shanghai VS Beijing Acrobatics

Acrobatic Act at Chaoyang Theater in Beijing

Who gets to go first. Me, me, me! This is what my friend shouted when we standing in front of the bullet train in Shanghai. Pretty much among the same lines as in the acrobatic show queue in Shanghai. Yes, obviously my good friend was very exited to ride one, as they claim that it crossed one of the largest train supported bridges in the world. Anyhow, it was time to say good bye to Shanghai at that time and we were still full of laughs. Always a good way to depart a place so you don’t start feeling sad about it or something. Kind of reminded me of what happened with the Rotten Tomatoes review of “That Awkward Moment”, which didn’t go all that well. But laughs saved us all, and now we look back at it that they did have some truth in it and we learn, and laugh even more.

I kind of was thinking to myself that there could not be any more awkward moments for us during the huge trip in China. But I was once yet again, wrong. This time we wanted to see the Beijing version of Chinese acrobatics known as the famous Chaoyang Theater. After a long and tired trip, we finally arrived to the hotel thinking we cannot make it in time to the show. But yet again, we were wrong as we managed to arrive in time after running around frantically around the Beijing subway system. Even up to this way, I really believe that this tired feeling really added up to the experience. While I was afraid I might fall asleep during the acrobatics, the case seemed to be quite the opposite. Shanghai was amazing in it’s own right, but Beijing still won and we think there is nothing more awesome that we can ever see period. With a little bit of exaggeration added, the show was also in that style where everything was pumped up so that heart beats would go up as well.

This time the stake was high, and the acrobatic feats were so stunning and crazy that we were afraid of their lives. With all respect this time none of the threw anything to the stage, or interrupted the performance in any way. Instead there was a bit of an awkward moment amongst the performers themselves. Yes, it involved balls and lots of hurting. The audience was hurting too, because one skilful guy on the stage had to be carried away for ball recovery. He was making an amazing balancing stunt, where you climb to huge heights with only one arm to use. It’s a bit difficult to explain, but we are still shaking our heads over it. Anyway, this man fell and hit his balls on a metal bar, making a huge sound. We really hope that he was alright afterwards, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he could loose to ability to breed. With all due respect, that was an amazingly amazing show with an even more amazing awkward moment. And for us of course, it made the spectacle even more spectacle-like and special. Beijing definitely won on that one! We are not sure if it’s because of the “little” accident, or just because of the show itself. Probably, a combination of both.

After we thought that we had seen it all, we were taking into a magical world of the silk hanging trick. Beautiful Chinese women and lots of them, hanging from the ceiling and making beautiful choreography. It proved to us, that Chaoyang Theater could manage all aspects of the performing arts very well. Obviously with tens of years of experience as one of the oldest acrobatic troupes in China, I was not that surprised about that. They did an excellent performance, which will carry it’s weight as a treasured memory in my life. Just too bad, that we couldn’t get a picture or video of the beautiful yet awkward moment that I explained.

Chaoyang Theater
36 North East Third Ring Road
Chaoyang District, Beijing

In town? Don’t miss it, we dare you to take the ball challenge! Check out their official site for more information. Btw. we would like to invite Tom Gormican to go to Beijing too.

Treasure Moments of Happy

Treasure Moments of Happy

Happiness is not Formulaic. It’s pulsating, and impossible to predict. Sometimes it may seem cruel, but all that crap that comes with on the road of achieving it, is not that bad. I mean, what is the worst thing that could happen. Yes, there is death but that’s not on the top of your worries is it. Worries are trivial, and I am not saying that people should stop having them. Rather accept them, including the awkward and make fun of yourself for being so useless. Little things are what this world is made of and people are so engaged in putting importance on the crappy moments that one forgets to treasure the happy ones.

Here is the clue, according to Tom Gormican at least. Each moment has to be treasured, because you never know which one of them is going to be the one. Going on with your life, selecting which ones you think are happy and not is going to limit you a lot. Truth is that happiness is something that can always be achieved in greater and funnier ways. That’s why you can never know the limit and why one needs to keep the gate open for the funny monster to come in.

The funny monster is another comedic image of the self image that we have of ourselves. Just think of the name, it’s ridiculous and you should be laughing already! If not, you cannot laugh at your self and miss one of the most amazing treasures in your life. Happiness baby, it’s all that and nothing more. I know you might think I sound like a douchebag but that’s exactly right! We should all become assholes so that we can laugh at each other, and enjoy the bloody time we have that’s limited on this planet.

But there is a flip side. Now that you have stopped worrying about small ridiculous things, such as awkward moments. It’s time to worry about your death! Muhahaha!

Get real,
Renan Leggo

Just get Awkward Moment in Circus World Shanghai

Picture of Shanghai Circus World Building

Extensively traveling in and around the globe, there have been many moments that just get awkward on a global scale. Of course, these are some of the most favourite and treasured moments there are. What better way to discover new countries and cultures than by embarrassing yourself. One such curious case that comes to mind, is from the beautiful city of Shanghai in China.

Ask you can see from the picture above this curious looking, yet beautiful building is the amazing Shanghai Circus World that is very famous throughout the country! As well as abroad as well judging from the huge flocks of tourists that go to see the show every day. Now that’s business, in the form of a ball theatre, splendor I might add!

The trip to Shanghai was not just some R-rated comedy. It was like a film of precious moments about three best friends who find themselves in a foreign culture, and subsequently creating loads of confusing situations. Perhaps lucky for us, there was no dating or relationships with Chinese women. However, there were some attempts that I am still laughing at to this day.

We wanted to see the famous FilmDistrict in Shanghai, instead we ended up going to see an acrobatic show at the Circus World. Well, not everything can go to plan and that is really better to keep things exiting and fresh! And fresh we were indeed, as we approached this odd ball shaped theatre building thinking that we were in for some kind of a tourist trap. No, this was an authentic show that makes your hair go up and ears fall off. We enjoyed every bit and were very much glued to the performance, especially when the beautiful Chinese ladies were hanging from the roof with threads of silk. That was beautiful and our dreams went far of a life of an acrobatic performer in China. But what were we thinking!

Soon enough, the most clumsy of us, Mr. Michael B. decided to step up from his seat and run down to the performance stage. I would have never thought that he made so far, but there was no security and no stopping him. For a while I thought that he would ruin the whole show, but not exactly. Although turns out that the audience did get a huge laugh as the somewhat surprised performers (and audience), took him to the show and made him try one of the tricks. It was a hat trick and not the type where you score four goals. He had to flip a hat in air, and land it perfectly on his head. Well, he had courage and balls to go in front of that huge audience and make a fool of himself. Yes, meaning that he did fail at the trick and the moment was extremely awkward! I wouldn’t have missed that for the life of me. And Michael would not have missed it either, no way.

The curious thing was, that his awkward moment made the acrobatic show feel even more amazing. In comparison to Michael’s poor performance, the skill of the real performers was so amazing that it was just unbelievable. What best was that this ridiculous drunken burst was to thank for it all. So I guess, it was not really that ridiculous after all.

If you are visiting Shanghai, ever, please go and watch the amazing Shanghai Circus World spectacle. You will not regret it, as long as you can just let go with the experience. Chinese acrobatics are surely the top of the world. As for the movie industry, I am not always so sure but could very well be that there is some good stuff worth looking for. Either way, there are loads of film theaters so should be alright.

The acrobatics you can find just by taking a subway to Circus World station. You can not miss this huge building!=)

Awkward greetings from Mr. Renan.

And a hello to all of our Chinese friends, including Show Shanghai Nightlife crew of course!

Rhythm of Verbal Humour

Laughing Kids

I really believe, that Tom Gormican is one of the most skilful writers and directors when it comes to verbal humour. It’s not just about making good jokes, it’s a lot about rhythm. Just like the heart beat in all of us humans, we need to have some kind of tide to grab on to and take us to the heights of.. well, comedy for example. Also the same applies to a lot of other movies. In comedy, it’s a little bit different however. For example, when creating those awkward moments, timing is extremely crucial for creating a big enough impact on the audience. It’s a mix of being obnoxious as well as clever amongst many other elements that throughout the scenes go up and down with elegance and manner.

When movies are lacking that rhythm, it is when often enough the comedy fails to penetrate. This “moment” when the laughter penetrates ones being is a non-stobable chain reaction, creating laughter within a huge mass of people.

Now, if you think of it in that way it’s easy to understand that there needs to be parts when the mood goes down too. After all, we don’t want to die from laughter, don’t we?!

Let’s make good movies,
Renan Leggo

PS. Feel free to ask me any questions if interested. Cheers!

Akward Leads to Understanding WD My Cloud Greatness

Do you know how many times I’ve had that moment, when you do something that you regret. Well, often you forget at some point. Yet, I think we should not. Because if you really put effort into thinking hard, and looking into the past.. you may easily realise that in fact you just might have learned a very valuable lesson in life. Which you may regret at that time, but will be soon forgotten.

Take for example, hardware. How many times have I completely destroyed some electric parts just because of plain ignorance and stupidity. In a recent movie, I saw a kid thinking that they could put water inside a computer in order to make it grow stronger and faster. While that kid might have be on to something, surely it did destroy the whole computer. Now, that’s an awkward moment! In fact, quite ridiculous and I ended up laughing pretty hard during not just that but in a lot of the scenes of the movie.

Talking about movies and screwing up. I recently bought a WD My Cloud to accommodate all the stuff I download. It’s actually a really cool device, better than any external HD with the idiotic USB connection. But I didn’t realise this before a few mishaps, of trying to use the thing over Wi-Fi which turned out possible. Just something you are too stubborn to admit that you screwed up. Well, luckily I bumped into this guide on fixing WD My Cloud Speed and whee, it couldn’t be faster!

Netgear Device

Yes, it’s this beauty that saved my awkward life. Netgear switch that channels data through a blazing fast Ethernet connection. I would really recommend it to anyone who is in problems of speed with this My Cloud device. Western Digital has become one of my favourites, because they just create really simple and efficient devices. If you are as dumb as me to not understand how they work, then it’s not their fault is it. So I just wanted to recommend it to everyone who might have a lot of movies to share. What I’ve learned is to never delete them because after a lot of years, that’s when you really want them to still exist. Maybe not till your death bed, but anyway.. you get the point!

I am now definitely up there in the “understanding” section of things.

Renan Leggo (Author).

Now Showing Official Stardom

Now Showing Official Stardom

You might have been somewhat wondering, what a cat is doing inside a cardboard box. Or likewise, now you could be thinking: is that bird looking at me. All those questions and more, will be hopefully processed in the awkward blog. And lastly but not leastly you may ask, why. It is all for the sake of stardom of course, the kind that we see in movies and other shows. It was gives us kicks and makes us laugh. It’s what we need to make us feel alive and kicking!

Yet, there is always an interesting contrast in things. Such as the bird, which is hiding and lurking behind it’s beautiful wings. In fact, I often feel humanity in that way. Everyone is beautiful, yet they are hiding that beauty within themselves.

Please, understand that the only way out is to feel awkward and let that feeling take you to stardom. No one is going to really notice you if you just do something well, or make effort. Everyones going to be very keen on what you are doing if you are embarrassed about it and try to hide it. Just one needs to put some emphasis, to go to extremes. Only so that we could laugh about it in the end.

These and many awkward subjects will be discussed in these writings. I know it will take some time to absorb all the information and “philosophy”. Yet if there would be one more advice I could give, it would be to not to think too much. Absorb my sweet words, and you’ll be on your way. Where? To stardom of course!

See you soon, dear, dear,
Renan Leggo (Author).