Homecoming

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The Short Football Movie That Hits You Like a Feature
Theatrical / DVD Release – July 2, 2010
2011 Buffalo Niagara Film Festival 

‘Homecoming’ tells the story of Carl Connor, an aging high school football coach in the twilight of his career. Over the course of his legendary run at Riverside High, Coach Connor has won every title and championship the game has to offer. In his later years, however, he has started to fall out of touch with the younger generation. Following another miserable start to the 2009 season, he now looks more forward to resigning more than anything else.

BUT! He soon learns of the Board of Education’s plans to cut the team the following year due to “budgeting issues”. Connor must rally the town, the team, and himself… to put together the first winning season in years and save the football program for the future generations of the school.

DVDs and Blu-Rays on sale now. Trailers can be seen on the ‘FILMMAKER’ top page and a few clips can be seen here:

Written, Produced, Directed, and Edited
BRENDAN NAGLE

Director of Photography
ADAM SCHONBERG

Thesis Advisor
JACK BECK

Coach – Carl Connor
MICHAEL DUGAN

Daughter – Emily Connor
ALLIE SMITH

Superintendent – Jim Anderson
JEFF MOON

Quarterback – Billy Maxwell
BRENDAN NAGLE

Board President
JIM TOEPPER

 

This was my senior thesis from the Rochester Institute of Technology’s School of Film and Animation, Class of 2010. Someday I’ll write a book about all of our misadventures along the way making this, but for now, one story shall suffice:

Second Week of fall semester.  Nobody has anything to do this early in the year, so I figured one of those nights would be perfect to shoot the football game and sidelines scenes.  On top of that, there was actually a film crew in from Los Angeles working on a low-budget (although still a few millon opposed to my few thousand) fiction feature about the life of Matt Hamill, an NTID (sub-college of RIT) graduate who went on to become a successful deaf UFC Fighter. Tuesday afternoon, they had their wrestling match scene to shoot indoors.  Wednesday night, I had my football game.

GUESS WHO HAD MORE EXTRAS?!  So after shooting for five straight hours with about 100k worth of equipment, a fully padded football team on the sideline, SAG actor in from Buffalo, and 100+ extras in the stands; I went to bed thinking that I’d topped Hollywood.  The next morning I woke up to review the footage, only to see that it was all shot at 60 frames per second (slow motion) and was totally useless.  Camera glitched.  Hence the slow-mo shot of Connor towards the end.

Ironically, it was the best thing that could have happened to the project, as I was able to re-cast characters, change the script, and we improved on the lighting set-up.  Best glass of lemonade I’d ever had.  Moral of the story… don’t ever give up or settle for anything less than the absolute best.


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