Monday, February 26th, 2007
Simple, comedic is how filmmaker Joel Schoenbach of Doosh Bag Productions describes his work. A former pool attendant, Schoenbach, now lives in Las Vegas where he pursues his dream of making films. To date, he has created more than a dozen shorts and doesn’t plan on stopping any time soon.
According to Schoenbach, it was a class project that first got him interested in making films. “In a psychology class we had an essay paper and video project to do for our midterm and I sucked at the paper but the video was a success even though it was in camera editing and stuff,” said Schoenbach. “But that’s what got me interested.”
While Schoenbach did go to film school at UNLV he feels that it left him unprepared and ignorant of the advanced methods of filmmaking that is used in Hollywood productions. What’s the best thing that he gained from film school? “It introduced me to the people I want to make movies with forever.”
Schoenbach says that his biggest directorial influence is Kevin Smith. “Most directors would have all this coverage for a short scene that has two people talking and I feel like it’s a waste of time,” said Schoenbach. “Kevin Smith would just put both of them in a medium shot and move on.”
When asked about his strengths as a filmmaker, Schoenbach shared what he has heard other people say about his productions. “People say my comedic timing is pretty strong. My simplicity that makes people concentrate on a story and not things like cool shots or cool lighting.”
Mistakes? Every filmmaking career is marred and at the same time enhanced by them, but one in particular sticks out in Schoenbach’s mind. “I needed a party scene for this movie and instead of getting extras I threw a real party,” said Schoenbach. “I invited all of my friends; bought 300 bucks worth of alcohol. Let’s put it this way: drunk friends plus camera equals big mistake.”
Schoenbach who describes himself as being more of a visual filmmaker enjoys the screenwriting phase of making a movie more than all of the other aspects. “Because that’s the main stage of the creative process and you don’t have to worry about the millions of dollars in budgets and the hell of production.”
Film festivals are a relatively new endeavor for Schoenbach. He has entered only one festival and won a couple of awards in a few 48 hour film competitions so far, but plans to begin submitting more of his shorts to film festivals. He also plans to make a feature length film when he feels that he is ready.