Dedicated To Filmmaker Joseph Strickland
The Creative Efforts of Joseph Strickland: Projects
• Vital Vision Productions, 1985:
Vital Vision Productions Was Founded In 1985 In Chicago, Illinois By Joseph Strickland. It Is A Film And Video Production Company. Strickland Is The Executive Producer And Director Of This Company Which Focuses On Acquiring Scripts And Developing Projects In-House.
• The EPIDEMIC (Original Screenplay), 1985:
The EPIDEMIC Was An Original Screenplay Written By Joseph Strickland In Response To The AIDS Epidemic In The U.S.. It Was Originally Commissioned To Be Produced As A Feature Film.
• Innovative Music, 1987 - 1989:
Innovative Music Was A Music Video/Cable TV Program Which Joseph Strickland Founded. He Produced And Directed All Of The Concert Videos Which Featured Well-Known And Up-And-Coming Musical Acts. The Music Genres Spanned From R&B, Jazz, Blues, Rock And Pop.
• Chicago Access Network (CAN), 1987 - 1989:
Joseph Strickland Began His Entry Into Television By Producing And Directing Music Videos, As Well As Talk Shows And Live Events That Were Featured On Chicago Access Network.
• Daily Mass (Short Film), 1989:
Joseph Strickland Co-Wrote And Co-Directed This Short Film With A Local Independent Filmmaker Named Tim O'Neill. The Project Was Showcased In The 24th Chicago International Film Festival. And Legendary Film Critic, The Late Roger Ebert, Commented That The Student Film Showed 'Promising Talent.' Both Strickland And O'Neill Met As Students Attending Columbia College of Chicago.
• First Asian Human Services Festival, 1989:
Joseph Strickland Produced The First Asian Festival In 1989 For Chicago Access Network Television (CAN - TV) Ch. 19. The Special Television Program Splendidly Captured The Cuisine, Dances, Songs, And Culture Of Asia's Vast Contribution Held In The Chicago Event, Which Included Over (30) Countries From Around The World.
• Jade Monkey King (Theater Production), 1994:
Joseph Strickland Worked As The Lighting Designer For The Theatrical Production Of The Famed Story Of "Jade Monkey King". The Production Featured Actress And Miss Illinois 1994, Chuti Tiu - Which Marked Her Entry Into The Entertainment Industry. The Staged Production Was Presented At Chicago's Roosevelt University.
• Simon Public Relations, 1996:
During The Production Of The Feature Film Dual Mania, Joseph Strickland Had Hired The Public Relations Firm, Nancy A. Simon, PRX, To Handle All The Publicity In The Making Of The Production. Ms. Simon Also Mediated Between Third Parties During The Pre-Production Process By Engaging Many Angel Investors Who Became Involved In The Making Of This Psychological Thriller.
• Dual Mania (Feature Film)
The Film Is A Psychological Thriller Dealing With The Dual Persona A Young Man Possesses And Attempts To Conceal Throughout His Ongoing Sessions With His Therapist.
• The 32nd Chicago International Film Festival, 1996:
Joseph Strickland Was Invited To Be A Judge On The Feature Film Panel In The 32nd Chicago International Film Festival. Films Highlighted That Year Included: "Twilight of the Golds," "Slingblade," "The Fugitive," etc .
• The 14th Annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival, 1997:
Joseph Strickland Was Invited To Be A Judge On The Adult Jury Panel In The 14th Annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival. His Invitation Had Been Personally Extended By Former Chicago First Lady, The Late Maggie Daley.
• The 15th Annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival, 1998:
Filmmaker Joseph Strickland Was Invited To Return As A Judge On The Adult Jury Panel In The 15th Annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival. Some Of The Highlighted Films That Had Been Awarded Were: "The Island on Bird Street," "Hands Up," And "Bavel's Book."
The Creative Efforts of Joseph Strickland: Memberships
• Independent Film Project/Midwest, Chicago:
Joseph Strickland Became A Member Of The Independent Film Project/Midwest (IFP) In 1987. It Is A Film/Video Production Center That Helps Support Independent Filmmakers In The Midwest Region - From Production Facilities And Discounts And Screenings To Providing Access To Film And Video Production Crew Members, etc.
• Black Filmmaker Foundation, New York:
Joseph Strickland Was A Member Of The Black Filmmaker Foundation, New York, From 1994 - 1997.
The BFF Offered It's Members Access To Independent Film Screenings By African-American Filmmakers, VIP Tickets To In-Person Events And Its Membership Newsletter.
• Writer's Guild of America, Los Angeles:
Joseph Strickland Joined The WGA West Coast Branch In 1995. Membership Benefits Included: Lists Of Major And Independent Studios, Agency Contacts, Film Producer Reps, Magazine Subscriptions And Screenwriting Tools, Such As: Final Draft, Editing Software, etc.
• American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP):
Joseph Strickland Joined ASCAP In 1999. The American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers Is The World Leader In Advocacy And Service For Songwriters, Composers And Music Publishers.
• The Harry Fox Agency (HFA):
Joseph Strickland Joined The Harry Fox Agency In 2001. The HFA Represents Music Publishers, As A Provider Of Licensing Services In The U.S. For The Music Industry.
Interviews and Quotes
"The prosecutor came to the conclusion that he had an abnormal childhood, sort of the 'Silence of the Lambs' theory..."
— Joseph Strickland on the Jeffrey Dahmer trial.
SCREEN Magazine interview, December 6, 1993
"When I speak of directors, I speak of the legendary ones. Alfred Hitchcock and Stanley Kubrick are just two of my greatest influences as a filmmaker."
— Joseph Strickland
In an interview with Earl Calloway at the Chicago Defender on October 3, 1996
"I am impressed by the work and influence of Spike Lee on the film industry, as well as by that of Carl Franklin, who is a significant individual and very unique."
— Joseph Strickland
Chicago Defender, October 9, 1996
"As a psychological suspense thriller, I wanted to depict 'Dual Mania' in the dark, brooding style of a 1930's thriller, but with a modern twist from current trends and culture, architecture and music.
The independent feature film is underlined with a tense and original Jazz score, and the film moves swiftly and logically towards an unexpected ending..."
— Joseph Strickland
Original press release, June 7, 2000
"The style is quite surrealistic. It reminds me of books by Maurice Sendak, but the symbolism is Japanese."
— Joseph Strickland on the Japanese animated film, Bavel's Book, directed by Kōji Yamamura.
The Chicago Tribune, October 9, 1998
Joseph Strickland and Cat Ellington: The Early Years
I Met Joe In 1992 While We Were Both Working For A Marketing Research Firm In The John Hancock Building. Our New Friendship Had Been An Instant One, And It Continued To Blossom Over The Next Year, Until I Left The 'Big John' To Take Another Job In The Spring Of 1993.
Because I Believed In Keeping Work In It's Place And My Personal Life In It's Place, I'd Never Offered Joe My Phone Number. But In The Summer Of 1993, While I Had Been Seated On The Red Line El Heading Home From Work, I Spotted Joe On The El Platform At The Berwyn Ave. Stop On Chicago's Northside, And Quickly Got Up To Exit The Train Car Before The Automatic Doors Closed - Calling Out To Him. (Smiling At The Memory) He Had Been Wearing A Dracula T-Shirt. DRACULA Had Been Expected To Be A Blockbuster That Summer, And He, Strickland, Had Been Supporting The Film.
On That Day, We Were Reunited. And THAT Time, We Exchanged Numbers.
Over The Next Week, We Spoke Often By Phone - Just Getting To Know One Another On A More Personal Level. And It Had Been During One Of Our Conversations That I'd Made Him Aware Of My Songwriting Aspirations. Well, To My Surprise, He'd Informed Me That He Was Drafting His First Major (Feature Film) Screenplay, And Asked If I Would Be Interested In Reading It. After Telling Him That I Would Be, We Made A Dinner Date.
On The Night Of Our Date (He Cooked For Me At His Place), I Got Started On Reading The Screenplay Titled Dual Mania, While He'd Gone Into The Kitchen To Hook Up The Grub.
Over The Next Week, I Would Read It Thrice More. It Was That Good.
Well, As The Days Passed Into Weeks, The Weeks Into Months, And The Months Into The First Full Year Of Our New Relationship, Joe Strickland And I Had Formed Quite A Bond - Our Both Being Creative Artists Contributing Heavily To It. We Were All Over Our Native Chicagoland: Lakefront Walks, Art Galleries And Museums Dates, Bi-Weekly Pig-Outs At Tedino's On N. Sheridan Rd. (Tedino's Was Our Spot!), Weekly Pig-Outs At Cheng's Under The El On Bryn Mawr Ave., Looong Walks Along Both South And North Michigan Ave., Wabash Ave. (One Of My Favorite Strips In All Of Chicago), State Street, That Great Street, Marine Drive, Roosevelt Rd., And So On.
We Ate Like Dogs And Drank Like Fish At Edwardo's On Printer's Row, And Practically Lived At Buckingham Fountain During The Summer.
There Hadn't Been Too Many Of Chicago's Finest Eateries And Various Establishments That We Didn't Often Frequent. And When We Didn't Feel Like Going Out (Which Was Rare), We Ordered In.
Strickland Began To Take Me To Some Of Our City's Most Well-Known Movie Theaters, Where He Knew Nearly Everyone Employed Within Them. And I Was Introduced To Quite A Few Of His Friends, Including Theater Owners, Among His Acquaintances In Chicago's Film Community. And I Have To Honestly Say That There Was NEVER A Time Where We Walked Into One Movie Theater In The City Of Chicago And Had To Pay For Anything. Not Ever. Joe Strickland's Money Had Been No Good In Any Of Chicago's Movie Houses; They All Knew Him. And When We Showed Up, The Ticket Agents In The Box Offices Would Just Wave The 'Go Ahead On In' Gesture At Us.
We Helped Ourselves To The Concessions Too—Free Of Charge. We Never Had To Pay For Anything In The Movie Houses - Nachos, Popcorn, Juice, Dots, Raisinettes, You Name It - All On The Movie Theaters.
I Had Been In Awe Of Strickland's Influence In The Chicago Film Community. I Mean, I Knew That He'd Written The EPIDEMIC, And That He'd Co-Written And Co-Directed DAILY MASS, Which, By The Way, Had Been A Hit In The 24th Chicago International Film Festival, Not To Mention Given A Thumbs-Up By The Late, Great Roger Ebert, But This Movie House Pull Had Me In Awe.
I Couldn't Believe My Eyes When Joe Went Behind The Concession Counter At The Burnham Theater (We Had Been There To See The Client), And Filled The Largest Popcorn Bucket With Freshly Popped Popcorn, Buttered And Salted It, Then Handed It To Me. I Was Too Through.
I Was LMAO Waaay Before The Phrase Became A Popular Acronym In Today's Culture.
On A Few Occasions, He'd Taken Me To See Movies Where We Were Permitted To Watch Them From The Projectionist's Booth. Normally NOBODY, Save The Projectionist, Is Ever Allowed Inside Of The Projectionist's Booth. But Joe Strickland Had Been. And Myself Too, Because I Was On His Arm.
That's How It Was. We Cruised On Through 1993/94.
We Were In The Middle Of Getting Dual Mania Together. Strickland Had Had An Office On Wacker Drive, And It Had Been Within That Office Where He'd Begun The Initial Casting Process. It Had Also Been Within That Same Office Where He'd Been Interviewed By Barry Rice For SCREEN Magazine.
We Were Dealing With Camera And Other Equipment Rentals, Astro Labs, Locations, etc. And We Were Pulling It Together. There Were Many Rough Times And There Were Many Good Times, But It Was Coming Together - From The Script To The Live Work.
I Began To Work On Some Of The Music For DM's Soundtrack, Matching Melodies To The Mood Of The Psychological Suspense Thriller And It's Characters. Piece By Piece, We Were Getting It Together.
We Wore All Black On Our Wedding Day When Strickland Took Me To Wife On New Year's Eve Day, 1994, In A City Hall Union. We Were Happy Newlyweds, But We'd Taken A Pass On A Honeymoon. And Our Wedding Cake Was A Store Bought Pepperidge Farm Vanilla Three-Layer. We Didn't Have Any Fancy Wedding, Honeymoon, Or Tiered Cake Money. Every Discretionary Dollar We Had Went Towards Getting Dual Mania Made. Our Motto Was: 'We Can Go On A Fancy Honeymoon After We Have This "Baby."'
One Day In The Summer Of 1995, We Were Out On A Date, And Headed To The Lincolnwood Theater Where Joe Had More Of His Closest Friends In Authority (i.e. The Beautiful Maggie Santiago), As We Had Been There To See Tarantino's Pulp Fiction. Well, Just Like In Times Past, We Were Given Free Access To The Premises, And Our Concessions Were On The House.
Now I Knew, As We Sat Watching The Screen From The Audience, That Based On 'Misirlou' Being The Soundtrack To The Opening Credits, I Was Going To Love The Film Pulp Fiction. And I Did. I Truly Enjoyed It.
When We Saw Bitter Moon At The Bucktown Theater, We Watched It From The Projectionist's Booth. And The Same Thing Went For Speed At The McClurg Court Theater.
To Wrap It Up, No Pun, I Was Learning About A World That I'd Previously Had Absolutely No Interest Whatsoever In - That Being The Film Business . . . Picture Business . . . Movie Business . . . Motion Picture Industry . . . Whatever One Prefers To Call It. Film And The Art Of Film Making Had Rather Bored Me. Now I'm Not Talking About Motion Pictures In General, Because I Love Movies And I Love Watching Them, But Rather The Film Making Process Itself.
See, I'm A Music Woman. And Music Is My Fiercest Passion Where The Creative Arts Are Concerned. But Film And The Art Of Film Making Is The Fiercest Passion In The Creative Arts Of The Man That I Married.
And Because Of Him, Film, In It's Very Art Form, Became A Part Of Me And My Life Also. I Have Learned To Respect It, Admire It, And Truly Love It. And I Am Grateful To Now Be A Member Of It's Professional Culture And Community.
Thank You Again, Baby, For The Fun-Filled Experience.
• Note: For Information On Joseph Strickland's Filmography, Please Consult His IMDb Page.