Musings & Thoughts for Saturday, April 3, 2021, or: Update on Popcorn Sky Productions’ New Film Project

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on

Hello, Dear Reader. It’s late afternoon on Saturday, April 3, 2021. Here in New Hometown, Florida the temperature is 73˚F (23˚C) under mostly cloudy skies. With the wind blowing from the east-northeast at 13 MPH (20 KM/H) and humidity at 39%, the feels-like temperature is 73˚F (23˚C). We are at the forecast high temperature, and the day has been breezy. Tonight, we can expect clear skies. The low will be 50˚F (10˚C).

This weekend we reached our first milestone – of many – in Popcorn Sky Production’s GoFundMe campaign, Popcorn Sky’s next film by Alex Diaz-GranadosAn anonymous donor chipped in $41 to round out our first $500. Last week, two of my friends from my Epinions days donated (between them) $140. So before our anonymous supporter made a donation on April 2, we had $459 in the GoFundMe.

So far, the folks who own Popcorn Sky Productions – my friend Juan Carlos Hernandez and his wife Adria – have been working on the budget, and they tell me that for the project we have in mind the budget is estimated at (and this is a lowball figure, mind you) $50,000. This includes, among other things:

  • Compensation for the director
  • Compensation for the screenwriter – basically, me
  • Compensation for the producers – of which I happen to be one
  • Compensation for the cast
  • Travel (including transportation and lodging) funds so we can film and work in New York and Florida
  • Budget to pay for music (we can’t, obviously, just use any music we can find on YouTube or our CD collections!)
  • Compensation for the crew

So far, Juan, Adria, their son Anthony, our other collaborators, and me have been making short films with piddling budgets and posting them on YouTube where anyone can watch them for free. And in many ways, it has worked out okay for everyone involved. I, especially, have been blessed with the opportunity to write and/or co-write four shorts, starting with A Simple Ad (2019), which was followed by Clown 345 (2019), Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss (2020), and El Grande de Corona (2020).

My first-ever produced screenplay
I contributed the middle segment.
My tip of the hat to All in the Family.
My contribution to this one was modest.

But, in all honesty, while it is fine and dandy to create art for art’s sake, it’s time to take the training wheels off, so to speak, and make what some folks might call “a real movie.” You know, a film with a running time of at least 90 minutes and with a bigger view of the world than a small New York City apartment or whatever sets Juan and Adria can find to shoot at without going broke.

And, as I noted above, making such a movie can’t be done at no cost to the makers.

Hence…the GoFundMe campaign.

Some of you reading this have already donated, and everyone on the team, including Juan, Adria, AJ, and me are eternally grateful. We couldn’t have reached the “first $500” mark without your help.

But, as I said before, the estimated budget is $50,000. So, yep…we’re at $500…$49,500 to go.

So, here’s the deal. If you haven’t donated yet to the campaign, please consider it. You don’t have to make a huge contribution that will screw up your monthly budget, especially at a time of a global pandemic and economic insecurity. It can be a $10 donation, if that’s what you can afford to give. And if you can’t afford to donate, please consider telling your film-loving fans who might be in a position to be part of the Popcorn Sky project that we’re all working on.

As Juan and Adria say in their pitch to future donors:

Popcorn Sky has produced films for the last 20 years, such as The Cave (short), Waking Up In Astoria, Statico, A Simple Ad (short), Clown 345, Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss, and most recently a short comedy program called El Grande de Corona.  We are happy that Alex will be joining us for the first time as Associate Producer.

We believe in this campaign.  We believe in Alex’s story because he writes with compassion, conviction, and with a wonderful sense of humor.
Thank you so much for your support!  In thanks, we will make sure everyone who donated gets a copy of the final project!

So, if you can spread the word or even chip in a few bucks, we would really appreciate it.

See you at the movies!

Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

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