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By HENRY P. RALEIGH
ART TIMES online Feb 2010

Henry Raleigh's unmad film

Who can forget the astonishing success of “the Blair Witch Project” in 1999 –a blurry black and white, low-budget movie that was little better than the first effort of a freshman student in film school?  Well, here’s another one for you – knocked out in seven days at a cost of $11,000, “Paranormal Activity”, by my last count in mid-November, pulled in nearly 83 million and going strong. It’s a story to thrill the hearts of all would-be filmmakers. The movie was originally purchased by Dream Works with the intention of sending it straight to DVD as a warm-up for a really high class remake. Now most would be perfectly satisfied to take home a $239,000 profit for a week’s work but, as is the custom nowadays, the trailer for “Paranormal Activity” went on the internet and surprisingly became an instant cult hit, attracting more visitors than did the piano playing cat. Cleverly, the little horror movie, without any theatrical release, played at midnight scream showings in 33 cities where it packed them in. “Paranormal Activity” was headed for the big time.
            I am particularly excited and encouraged by all this. You see, my own 16mm., “-----/-----” (it still bears that mysterious title), has been packed away in a box somewhere in a dampish basement and the time is ripe to get it out of there and begin raking in the bucks. Back in 1972 I didn’t have the advantage of spreading my film all over cyberspace whipping up intense enthusiasm. I figure it is just as absorbing as watching a cat randomly pounding on piano keys and a good deal more intellectually stimulating given that my film has something to do with the Fibonacci Series (exactly what escapes me at the moment).  Its true “----/-----” is not a horror film per se still once you get into the Fibonacci business (whatever it is – look, it was 37 years ago) it could be scary. I mean the title itself, “-----/-----”, certainly hints at heaven knows what.
            I will give notice here that should Dream Works like to offer $350,000 for my film I’m willing to accept the offer. I will, though, need an advance on this to have the final print made. For the record I too spent about a week in the making of “-----/-----” and total costs through the work print $375.23. (Dream Works: I will hold off sending a trailer through cyberspace until I hear from you).

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