Film Reviews: Wednesday, October 22, 2008
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Movie Musical

Local musician Clancy Manuel learns the ropes of making movies.

By KRISTIAN LIN

Though her current project grows out of her work as a musician, Clancy Manuel is quick to say that Living Inside a Diamond isn’t a music video. She calls it a “music-movie,” and she has been filming it at prominent Fort Worth locations, including the Water Gardens, the Kimbell Art Museum, and the Cutting Edge Haunted House. A series of six musical interludes strung together with spoken dialogue, the film was intended to be a half-hour short but has grown into an hour. “I’d like to see it shown in IMAX,” Clancy said rather seriously, but she knows enough about the film business to know that the festival circuit is a more realistic goal.
The 36-year-old with an unusual name (“I think my dad just liked the name ‘Clancy’”) was born in Dallas and attended Mesquite High School. She moved to Fort Worth 15 years ago to pursue a career in making ambient techno music with her partner, Jean Christine Matthews, who’s known professionally as “holoJean” and is fully involved in the making of Living Inside a Diamond. Manuel, who had previously played some years in the band Captain Krunch, found Cowtown to be an aesthetically pleasing place. “I fell in love with Fort Worth’s architecture,” she recounted. “I hadn’t been to Fort Worth much while I was living over in Dallas, but I visited the Water Gardens when I was in ninth grade, and I was blown away.”
It’s been a slow and gradual process moving into filmmaking. “I did some photography in high school, but I didn’t want to leave music,” she explained. She had her first taste of multimedia a few years ago, when she and fellow musician Van Eric Martin collaborated on a musical piece called Perpetual Moments for Contemporary Dance/Fort Worth to perform to. She moved into making music videos that she plans on uploading to her MySpace page (www.myspace.com/clancyholojean). She describes herself and holoJean as big movie buffs, and she cites an unusual and eclectic list of favorite films: Hitchcock’s Spellbound, George Cukor’s A Star Is Born, Michael Anderson’s Logan’s Run, Ken Russell’s Tommy, and Sally Potter’s Orlando.
She briefly considered working on Claws, a horror short being filmed by director Laurence Maher at Cutting Edge this past summer at the same time she was there shooting footage for Living Inside a Diamond. The collaboration fell through because of scheduling difficulties, but the experience still taught her much about movie production. “My favorite job is editing,” she said. “Organization and being able to multitask is so important.”
Manuel’s also enthusiastic about Cutting Edge and its capabilities as a shooting location. “We’ve been using their holographic room for our film,” she said. “The sets they have built here are incredible, and the people are so nice. This could be a huge part of Fort Worth’s film scene.”
The shoot is proceeding piecemeal because the project is being funded out of pocket (a longtime job at Bistro Louise is Manuel’s source of steady income), but she hopes to have it out by next spring. A single from the film called “Love Is Womp Ohm” is also due to be released in multiple formats, with a music video available through iTunes. She hopes this will attract investors. In the meantime, she’s putting the same collaborative skills she picked up as a musician into her film work. “You have to accommodate all these other creative people,” she said. “I’m enjoying this.”


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