STARSEED FILMS – A Metaphysical Film Company
Future Projects in Development:
The story of a scientist, engineer and visionary who set out to
change the world during a time when it did not want to be changed.
THE STAR KING
The story of a mysterious “god-king” who travels back to ancient Egypt
to preserve an ancient knowledge and save humanity from spiritual decline.
A young man battles his own mind to discover the truth about UFOs, Crop Circles,
Government Conspiracies, Extraterrestrial Gods and World Domination.
A love story set in the backdrop of ancient Atlantis.
THE SKY GODS Part 1 (The Colony)
The legend of Extra-terrestrial giants with advanced technology who colonize the Earth
thousands of years ago.
The story of a master alchemist who attains immortality and works for generations toward the gradual enlightenment of mankind. This is the story of the lives of Saint Germain. Screenplays are being accepted.
The Making of 3 Magic Words – The Filmmaker’s Story
Michael Perlin became interested in filmmaking at a young age when he received a fortune cookie that said, “One of the great pleasures in life is doing what others say you cannot do”. Every filmmaker has their story about how they made the impossible happen and cut corners each step of the way with giant obstacles in their path. Michael went against all odds to become the first metaphysical filmmaker in Hollywood. His story is about how he made something out of nothing. All he had was an idea, a dream; and he had no idea how it was going to manifest into reality. He was living in Dallas Texas, fresh out of college, with an economics degree. He was waiting tables at Macaroni Grill. His metaphysical studies kept him detached from his mundane job. He absorbed everything he could find on metaphysics, spirituality, eastern and western philosophy, world religions and mysticism.
The world that was going on around him just didn’t seem to make any sense. People were still fighting wars over land, race and religion. Nobody seemed to care that this was still going on. It was as if people just accepted things the way they were and wanted to stay oblivious to what was happening on the planet as a whole. Michael never accepted this as the reality that he was going to live in and wanted to do something about it and try to make a difference. Everyone’s focus was on sports, violence on TV, getting drunk, and killing people overseas. While deep into his metaphysical studies, he started to see a pattern – that there may even be a solution to the problem. There were just so many spiritual ideas and teachings out there that seemed to be saying the same thing but in many different ways, and he saw this as part of the problem. So he set out to find a common spiritual theme that tied it all together. He decided that if he found it, he would re-package it into a language for the common man and bring it to the world. He just didn’t know what it was. He wrote his first screenplay, “Skeptic”, as it defined who he was before his research in metaphysics that started him on his path.
When he began his studies into metaphysics in 1992 there was no internet. He had to physically go to libraries or visit the local used bookstores to find information. In the New-Age section, he came across a book that he didn’t notice before. It was a goldish yellow book with a magical genie lamp on the cover. The pages were falling out of the binding and there was a huge piece of tape holding the book together. The book was called “ Three Magic Words” by U.S. Andersen (which later became Michael’s inspiration for the movie). He bought the book for two dollars and took it home. After reading the book, he discovered the answer he was seeking. It was the common theme he had been searching for, and it was so simple.
He told his Dad that he was going to move to LA and pursue a screenwriting career. Dad said, “Absolutely not”. “Do you know how hard it is to make it in Hollywood?”…Do you know how many people try and fail?”, Michael remembered the fortune cookie that he received when he was 10 years old. So he went against the odds without Dad’s support. He began a road trip with his friend Scott and paid for the trip from Texas to California on bounced checks and a borrowed gas card. When he arrived in Los Angeles he lived out of his car and showered at the beach while living off of 99-cent whoppers at Burger King. Finally, he landed a temp job serving food for a catering service to pay for a small apartment. He began writing his next screenplay. He took a job at a metaphysical bookshop in Venice, where he absorbed even more subjects in the realm of metaphysics. He spent six years going in and out of desk jobs until he decided to go back to school for editing, motion graphics and filmmaking at Santa Monica Community College while he worked full time as a multi-media coordinator for the Hollywood Film Institute.
Michael finished two more screenplays, “The Star King” — an Ancient Egyptian time travel story and “Atlantis”, a love story set in the backdrop of ancient Atlantis. He still held on strongly to his dream to somehow bring the common spiritual theme he discovered to the masses. He pitched his stories around Hollywood but could not sell anything or get an agent. They all told him “This genre is not commercial”. Then finally he landed his first job in post-production and started editing and learning from hands-on experience. That’s when he realized that 2003 was a little too early for metaphysical filmmaking. Hollywood didn’t want this stuff. When he realized that no one wanted to risk producing anything, “metaphysical” he used his credit cards to buy up his own equipment and attended many spiritual gatherings, drum circles, ceremonies, gurus and holistic events where he shot whatever he could, using a simple Sony DV camera. The digital world was changing exponentially by the day, so keeping up with the technology was a difficult task. When HD video became a reality he quickly learned that what used to be a rich man’s game now anyone could do with a prosumer HD camera.
He teamed up with his friend, Maura Hoffman and told her that he wanted to make a movie with the special message he discovered. She said, “Well, I happen to know all the people who know that message and I can get them for you!”. Together, Maura and Michael contacted the individuals who had the most impact on people’s lives.
They brought in an actor friend and his daughter to play the lead and Michael wrote the screenplay based on their story. For the next 4 months he shot them in various settings around Los Angeles and had only 5 more scenes to shoot before the actor and his daughter pulled out of the project for reasons still unknown. Michael was soon fired from his job for borrowing the film equipment too frequently and used the free time to re-write the screenplay to account for the missing scenes but the script never recovered. While living on unemployment, he searched for the funding to hire a full crew and re-make the film.
Starting out with no money, no support, and little experience- People told him “No”. “You can’t do that” “It’s impossible.” “Give it a rest” “you need to pursue a REAL career”. Comments like these gave him the fuel to carry on, making him stronger and more determined. After shooting all the interviews he spent every day for three more months transcribing each one at a coffee shop in Burbank. He began editing the pieces together on a 15 inch Sony Vaio laptop using Sony Vegas editing software. He literally had to take an ice pack out of the freezer to set it under the laptop so it would stay cool while it rendered the rough cut for 3 days. The first cut of the film was a disaster. Another year passed and the film was at a dead end. He knew that he had to get a professional on the project or it would never manifest. Finally, from a friend’s referral he met a Cinematographer who was interested in re-making the entire project. He agreed to re-shoot, re-edit, re-score, color correct and compose the music at a very low fee. But money was still a problem. Michael approached his family. Dad and Grandpa were not risk takers. They had to see a return on their investment. They told him they would consider investing $25,000 if he came up with a business plan.
Michael spent the next two weeks, staying up all night working on a business plan. Grandpa took a look at it and said, “Well, it’s very well written, but I just don’t see how this genre is very commercial.” There was that word again! So, it was back to having nothing and no method of getting the project made. Michael paid the DP $1,000 for a not-so-great trailer that he had to re-edit himself which he then put on Youtube. A guest in the film, Gudni Gudnason, saw the trailer and generously came through with the remaining funds that were needed to remake the film. Because of time constraints, casting the narrator was done on facebook a day before the shoot. Michael, the DP and the Narrator drove out to Joshua Tree the following day to shoot all the narrations in the beautiful backdrop of the California mountains. The plan was interrupted by pouring rain on the final day of production. The sun was setting and it seemed that all hope was lost. The narrator mentioned that he was the caretaker at a Twin Palms Retreat Center. He suggested to continue the shoot inside the homes, but unfortunately, no lights were brought for a night shoot. Every lamp they could find was brought into the scene and they had to figure it all out without extension cords. Michael had to use a cheap teleprompter that went too fast. So for the next nine hours he sat on the floor controlling the speed of the thing by hand to the pace of the narrator’s voice as he spoke in the obscure ambient light of antique lamps.
Michael had to wear practically every hat you can wear in filmmaking since he had little to no money. He tackled editing, animation, titles, graphics, cinematography, sound, color correction and all aspects of production. While working full time jobs, 3 Magic Words was made in four years, on weekends, with less than a skeleton crew. After finishing the film he quit his job, sold his furniture, moved out of his apartment and bought an RV to take the film on the road. Homeless and out of money, he spent his days at Starbucks editing the final director’s cut of the movie on a MacBook Pro to meet the deliverable requirements and land a distribution deal. The old saying is true, “If you want something done right, do it yourself”
In April of 2010, the film had its big Hollywood Premiere at the Harmony Gold Theater. The theater sold out 400 seats the day before the event. Soon after, the movie was picked up by a major distributor and released in over 100 million homes. If you have a dream, go for it. Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t achieve it. Don’t let anybody tell you who you are supposed to be or what you are supposed to be doing with your life. You are the only one who knows that. Listen to your heart and your own intuition; it will never let you down. Remember the fortune cookie, “One of the greatest pleasures in life is doing what other people say you cannot do.” …and you will accomplish your dreams. – Michael Perlin