In the summer of 2019, Dr Abbey Masahiro was at the big steampunk gathering in Lincoln. For a whole host of reasons, we weren’t. Tom had one of his moments (not unlike the stuff he gets up to on Facebook) and arranged to get a copy to Dr Abbey via the fabulous Lyssa Lopez Wain (who we later killed in this blog post).
Much to our delight, Dr Abbey was rather taken with Hopeless, Maine and started talking to us about what we do, and might do. The film project had been languishing on a back burner for some time at this point because none of us knew how to proceed.
As luck would have it, cameraman Gregg O’Neill was at an event with Dr Abbey a few weeks later and it gave them a chance to talk about all things film. There was a conversation about the Blind Fisherman project. Then, later in autumn, Dr Abbey took some Hopeless Maine posters and books to the Tokyo Film Festival to see if there might be a potential market for us. People involved with film festivals around the world had a look at us, and the response was positive.
It lit a fire under us, simply. Dr Abbey cast a spell on the project and we knew we were willing to invest a lot more energy and resources to make it work. The whole tone of the conversation changed, from largely daydreaming to entirely serious. We started thinking a lot more seriously about what and who would be needed to make it work, and everything stepped up a gear.