RANDOM PIC OF THE WEEK
While working on dubbing “Ersan Kuneri” to English, I fell in love with the costumes! Particularly this amazing shirt, which I’d like to have replicated someday if I can find the right fabrics. The cut and style of this shirt blows my mind! Gorgeous!
I’ve been humming this song for months, but I wasn’t able to share it with you until now. It’s from the soundtrack of the Turkish sitcom I’ve been working on called “Ersan Kuneri,” which was released on Netflix last Friday. The soundtrack was also released so as fast as I could, I bought this song from Ozkan Ugur called “Bir Bakman Lazim.” I can’t understand a single word he says, but the groove of this song is wonderful!
Tuesday the 10th – MUSCLE UP! – Roxy is 14 years old today! It’s amazing that she’s still going strong, as a collie’s expected lifespan is 10-13 years old. So Roxy’s not only in overtime, she’s in DOUBLE overtime! I’m so thankful! I walked her around a bit to rebuild some muscle. While I was gone in Palm Springs Roxy was too sedentary. She wasn’t getting her long walks every day and it really diminished her physicality somewhat. So I’m going to get her out to slowly rebuild her stamina. It was pretty windy out, so we didn’t walk around too much because otherwise my allergies would go berserk. Since I just received the digitized versions of some old home movies recently, I spent some time doing some editing on them for posting to various platforms. I figured posting a link to them would be a better way to get them seen by my relatives than actually snail mailing a DVD. I told my aunt about them and she asked me to bring a copy by when I visit Sioux Falls next. I explained to her that me being there physically wouldn’t be necessary, as I could have a copy in her hands in a few hours. So I uploaded them to a server and sent her the link. By that evening she was enjoying a blast from the past – all the way back to 1975! Ain’t technology great?! I had other catching up to do, since I had been gone the previous five days. I grabbed a short nap, got up later and did my nightly auditions, put a few new collectibles in my display cases, and built a little display stand out of armature wire for some new Batman sunglasses I bought while I was in Palm Springs. I got completely unpacked, made some hot dogs and watched a great episode of “Ghost Story” starring Melvyn Douglas as a creepy voo-doo grandpa, and a very young Jodie Foster as his granddaughter who couldn’t hear or speak. SCARY episode! Excellent!
Wednesday the 11th – CRAZY DAY! – It was time to put the Gran Torino back in the auxiliary parking space and swap it for my Mustang. But first I stopped at the gas station to fill her up before putting her back in storage. Because of the size of the tank on that car, and due to the current gas prices, the pumps are all programmed to stop at $85. Well, with a car like the Torino, that only got me about ¾ full. I asked the attendant if he could approve the full purchase for a complete tank and he just suggested that I do a second transaction to fill up with what I needed. So I tried to do a second transaction, but it declined my card. Soon, I got a text from my bank letting me know that somebody was trying to use my card fraudulently. Ugh. I remember this happening about 10 years ago when the gas prices were insane. Now I’ve got to call the bank and release the temporary hold on my card, and getting ahold of somebody at the bank is darn near impossible. So I drove off, not realizing that my gas cap was still on my bumper! Luckily some nice guy pulled up next to me at a stoplight and let me know! I replaced the gas cap and then I was unable to locate my house keys! I know I had them with me, but I couldn’t find them. Did I leave them at the gas station for some reason? I pulled over once again and searched the entire car. Come to find out they had been stuffed into an odd pocket in my black leather satchel. Ugh. My brain was still in vacation mode, I think. I put the Torino to bed, got back in the Mustang, and called my bank to unblock my card. Finally, it got resolved after I answered a few security questions. I went to It’s a Wrap to find a specific pair of pants for an upcoming appearance, but no luck. I went across the street to a great store called Junk For Joy and found not one, but TWO great pairs of pants for my purposes! I picked up my packages at my mailbox and headed home. I did some work around the house, and opened up a package of Funko Pop Renji boxes that arrived for me to sign for a private group signing I had agreed to. I fed the kids, rested a bit, and later did a little bit of coordination for a bit I’ll be doing for Monsterpalooza in a few weeks. It’s a surprise, so I can’t say much about it at this point. I recorded my nightly auditions, did a little writing, and prepped for a tech check that I’ll be doing on Thursday for the big “Invader Zim” virtual Meet & Greet we’re doing this Saturday. I started searching the airline websites to buy my tickets to Sioux Falls, SD for the upcoming Voices Against Cancer event in early July! Busy busy!
Thursday the 12th – 35 YEARS?! – One of the first friends I ever made when I moved to L.A in 1987 was my pal Gil. I hadn’t seen him in quite a while, but we got together for a quick tour of Planet Wallywood. I had to do a quick tech check for the “Invader Zim” virtual meet ‘n’ greet this Saturday, and when that was finished Gil and I hit Paty’s for lunch. It was fun catching up on all the crazy stuff that’s been going on, and we’re going to stay in touch more often now. I drove over to Alex in Wonderland’s studio to see how she was coming along with my Roosevelt Franklin replica Muppet. I asked for a few changes to the hair as it looked too “smooth.” She said she had combed the faux fur a bit, and I said that probably changed the look too much from the original, so I asked that we make another hairpiece. I requested that she neither cut it nor comb it, so it retains that wild Roosevelt Franklin look. We also talked about the Popeye and Mr. Magoo cutouts she’s making for me, and we sat down with a pantone book and chose the paint colors. I got home and met with my pal Chris Malmin for a writing session, and we ordered a pizza. I grabbed a quick nap, and then got up later to do my auditions and work around the house to prep for the maids. Hard to believe the weekend’s almost here already! And it’s gonna be a warm one! Since I started working on the English dub of the Turkish sitcom back in March, I made a point of following the sitcom’s creator on Twitter and Instagram. Though I can’t read the posts, the photos being posted of the show were amazing. The guy’s name is Cem Yilmaz and he’s Turkey’s top comic and star. He wrote, directed and starred in an 8 episode series for Netflix called “Ersan Kuneri.” I was asked if I would provide the English voice for the lead character by a casting company, and I’m so glad I accepted the opportunity. It was everything I love about comedy – a period piece set in 1981 with a heavy emphasis on parody. Since the series drops on Netflix May 13th, I am now able to publicize it. I bought some of the songs from the soundtrack on-line and I’m having fun watching all of the posts about the show! This is exciting! But I was BLOWN AWAY when Mr. Yilmax Tweeted out a short clip from the show IN ENGLISH! Apparently he likes the job we all did on the English dub! AMAZING!
Friday the 13th – LUCKY DAY! – All of the information was out about “Ersan Kuneri” and I was given the go-ahead by the production team to “Tweet at will” about my involvement in the show. I’m very proud of the job we did, as we not only got to dub a brilliant show, but we were given the opportunity to improvise and move some lines around to make it more relatable to an English-speaking audience. My maids arrived later in the afternoon to clean up, and then my Effects Guy Jim Ojala dropped by with a prosthetic piece he produced for a special thing I’m doing for the upcoming Monsterpalooza on June 3rd. While Jim was here, he brought his casting materials to cast one of Roxy’s paws at my request. This is something I wish I would have done with my dog Sassie but didn’t even think about it. Now that Roxy’s 14 years old, I’d like to have some sort of memento to think of her when she’s no longer around. At first Roxy wasn’t sure why Jim was touching her paw, but I was there to give Roxy a neck massage (her favorite!) and she went right to sleep! So Jim had no resistance at all and we got a great casting! My pal Dah Veed came by to have me sign some additional Renji Funko Pops from the signing I had done a few weeks ago. Then we hit Bob’s Big Boy for dinner. Since it was Classic Car Night it was packed, so we just made ourselves at home at the counter and had a beautiful meal! After we ate we came back to Planet Wallywood and I finished up signing the remaining 30 pieces I was committed to. I grabbed a short nap, and then got up later to do some things around the house to prepare for a fun Saturday!
Saturday the 14th – PRAISE FROM TWO MASTERS! – Without a doubt, this day was one of the best days I’ve had in a very long time. It started when I signed on to Twitter and saw that I had a Direct Message from Cem Yilmaz of “Ersan Kuneri.” He thanked me for my “amazing work” on the show and said I was “funny as hell.” I was totally blown away! We continued our DM conversation for a while, and he said his son was watching the English version of “Ersan Kuneri” and said “My son is watching it in English. He said it is better.” While I know we all worked hard on the dub, and we’re very proud of it, I think he was just being kind. But I appreciated his kind words. He asked that we keep in touch, and I wholeheartedly agreed! I made a friend in Turkey! COOL! To top it all off, I secured a piano player for my upcoming Monsterpalooza bit that I’ll be doing at the awards show on Saturday night! It’s my old pal David Joyce with whom I had performed many times at church! Then, one of the top make-up artists in the business came over to see the prosthetic piece that Jim Ojala produced, and talk about the make-up process he’ll be doing on me for Monsterpalooza. It’s all full circle! When I moved to L.A. in 1987 the first movie I worked on was “Return of the Living Dead; Part 2” – a movie where Kenny served as head make-up artist. I snapped a picture of him doing a make-up on one of the lead characters. It wasn’t until years later that I became aware of his name and legend, and realized it was Kenny in my photograph! I had seen him at Monsterpaloozas throughout the years, but it was after a taping of “The Tonight Show” that we officially got acquainted. He was there to do Harrison Ford’s make-up, as Harrison was a guest on the show that day. In the parking lot I saw Kenny and introduced myself. I told him about “Return of the Living Dead” and how I had snapshots from my time on the set. He said he’d love to see them and we exchanged numbers. I also told him that if he still had the zombie headpiece that I wore in his studio, I’d pay any price to have it in my collection. He said he’d definitely look. He phoned a few days later and said that most all of the original headpieces had gotten lost or stolen over the years, and he only had a few molds left of the original works. But of the 12 molds he still had left, one of them was the “Burt the Zombie” character that I wore in the film! He said he’d make a replica for me and drop it by. Within a few weeks his assistant arrived at my house with an amazing replica mask, but when I whipped out my checkbook he refused to take any money stating that it was a gift from Kenny. I was BLOWN away! Occasionally I see him around town, and most recently I saw him at the Smoke House where we chatted for quite a while. So to have Kenny doing my make-up for this event is another amazing full circle event for me! When he, his wife Karen and their assistant Kris saw Planet Wallywood they were blown away. We started telling stories and having a great time, but they were on a time crunch so he promised to come back at a later date so we could hang out, I could give them the tour, and he’d sign my Wally Wall Of Fame in the Chaney Room. What a fantastic day! Then I drove over to Michael’s to pick up the framed “Art of the Muppets” poster which turned out amazingly well! I got a tasty sandwich at Togo’s, and then got some grocery items. I came home to put them away, and then rested for a bit. It was a whirlwind of a day! I did work around the house, made my traditional Saturday Night Super Saint Salad and watched an episode of “The Saint” before bed!
Sunday the 15th – SHE TOOK THE LONG WAY! – When I got back from my Palm Springs trip my dog Roxy wasn’t moving very well. It’s most likely because she wasn’t taken on her lengthy evening walks to maintain her muscle mass. So I’ve been slowly-but-surely getting her back into training. And after only a few days of resuming our walks she’s doing VERY well! In fact, during our late-night stroll through the complex on Saturday night/Sunday morning she took the LONG way! I always give her the choice which path she wants to take, and like a champ she headed down the long way to the center of the complex. I was SO happy! Later in the day my pal Sara came over so we could go shopping for a delicious Sloppy Joe dinner. I hadn’t had them in a while because she’s been busy, but I also invited my friends Edi and Chris to enjoy them as well. Midwestern-style Sloppy Joes with barbecue chips and Pepsi – really brings back those South Dakota memories! I did a few random things the rest of the night, including distressing a t-shirt for a thing I’m putting together for Monsterpalooza. I wish I could tell you more, but it’s all so secretive at this point! Stay tuned!
And how was YOUR week??!!
PIX FROM THE WEEK
With temps around 95 degrees this past weekend, it was time to embrace an old friend!
I took this on Roxy’s 14th birthday. It’s amazing to see how she’s still doing very well in her advanced age!