Tuesday, 27 October 2009

The first post

I woke up this morning in a proper state. In a month I am getting on a Virgin flight to Las Vegas with my brother Tom to try and find his absolute hero Lars Ulrich, the drummer in Metallica. If I had a penny for every time I've heard Tom say, "Wanna meet him Kate, wanna meet Lars", I'd be able to pay for a new eardrum to replace the one he's worn thin with his incessant pleading. Obviously this is going to be hard, Metallica are the biggest metal band in the world - although I read the other day Metallica bothered to meet a 90 year old female fan, so hey, it's not impossible.

But there's a couple of extra challenges. First, Tom has Fragile X, meaning he is learning disabled (the old fashioned among you might prefer the words mentally handicapped; the ones who deserve a good kicking would probably use the word 'retard'). He lives in a quiet residential care home with about 20 other learning disabled folk. His speech is pretty hard to understand and, well, Tom's a complex character. Hopefully one day you'll get to meet him.

I am in a proper state not because of Tom though, christ no. I'm in a flap because I get in flaps easily, and because I've decided this Mission to Lars should be a film. It's going to teach me a lot about Tom; I'll admit it's really easy to dismiss, overcompensate and kind of ignore a brother with a learning disability. It's time I confronted that shit in my psyche and grew on from it. I also think it'll be very entertaining. Tom has some very funny character traits. Tom is a pisstaker, and once you cut through his disability and see the man on the other side, he's a dude. My other brother, Will, is going to be one of the cameramen, he's a dude as well. Between the two of them I am fairly sure they will put me in my place. (Which will probably be cleaning the toilet in the RV.)

The Mission to Lars is a true gonzo, rock n roll roadtrip. Obviously no TV company wanted to touch us. So we thought, sod it, let's make a fuckin' movie man.

Dealing with professional feedback ("She [me] just isn't big enough to carry a TV programme about this...if it was Stephen Fry maybe..."), raising money, arguing with my brother Will, keeping up the promises to Tom, while searching for pennies down the back of the sofa to fund it, and generally doing all the things one needs to do to make a film is pretty, no very, hairy.

I'm trying to raise enough money to make a low budget feature film. So far we have about £12,000, a sixth of what we need. None of us have got any money or property we can put in, so me and my mates are having to find investors. (Thank God for mates, they're being fantastic) We're issuing shares in the film.

I always think if all else fails, have a party so two days before we leave on 28th November I'm having a rave for 500 people with ETA, we'll give half the money to the learning disability charity Mencap and put the rest towards production costs.

Whole thing's quite challenging, that's for sure. Especially on those mornings when you wake up feeling like a useless little worm.

I'll keep talking to myself here, I think it'll help. I get so scared sometimes, and I can't ring my Mum because I don't want to freak her that her three kids are embarking on a period of low budget mayhem. I know everything will be cool.

I'll throw up some pictures to try and bring us all alive.

Love from the Spicer crew on a Mission to Lars xx

1 comment:

Rebecca Woodhead said...


Want to help. Sent you a tweet. You won't remember this but you were really sweet to me when I first started writing in the 90s. Remember you called me The Terrier - can't remember what I did to earn that but you were laughing when you said it. Oh bugger. Just remembered what I did. Never mind.

Went into business but I'm back to writing again. Penniless but determined. Anyhoo never forgot how nice you were to me and I have some contacts who might be able to help. Amazing chaps. Could help move things along v quick.

Get in touch.