James and I are in full “we’re going to Cannes” mode trying to nail down final details and work before we take off next Monday (ah!). This trip is being made possible by some great partners – Airbnb, Lucid Absinthe, and Bourbon Columbia.  As I wrote in my last post, Airbnb invited us to participate in their “Live there.” campaign (which just so happened to have a focus in France) and in exchange for posting our experiences daily on social they’ve helped with our flights and some Airbnb housing credits. Lucid Absinthe and Bourbon Columbia are proudly displaying their logos on cups that will be serving the Sazerac during two tasting events in the American Pavilion, which is also a huge help with funding our trip. A million thanks to these great companies! Be sure to follow me and James on Instagram for play-by-plays: @thejenwestquest and @iamjamesmartin. We will be posting A LOT.

We will be in Paris from May 9 – 13, Cassis from 13 – 15, Cannes 15 – 20, then finally Amsterdam 20 – 23.

We are all set with Electric Bleau pitch materials, as well as for a new project that we’ve started developing called The City Cocktail Series. It’s an expansion on The New Orleans Sazerac with an additional five cocktail profiles all under the umbrella of a unique city in the United States. James has been working hard on the lookbook and it’s finally all ready to go. A series like this could potentially find a home in all sorts of ways – streaming, TV, web, etc. It’s fun to have two very different projects to pitch, both equally strong and thought out.

Electric Bleau is moving along great. My original hope was to film this summer, which was a very ambitious goal to have (but could have been possible). That window is no longer an option, but I’m honestly kind of relieved. I still feel very strongly that we will film this year, and if nothing else, find full funding. 2016 will be the year that Electric Bleau gets the green light. I know it in my bones. There are many benefits to waiting too, even if we had found funding in time. With every passing month the project becomes stronger by way of team, marketing, opportunities and script. In this development phase we are really getting to make a stamp on the world while putting it on the radar of some big folks. Basically we are getting a grand opportunity to set it up for success by giving it a little more time.

James and I are really excited to spend our time in Cannes with Vero and Clint. Vero’s film Bottomless was also a selection of the Emerging Filmmaker Showcase (that I also produced), which just makes the whole thing even more extraordinary. We will be sharing a flat that’s about a 28 minute walk from the Cannes Film Festival (aka a great distance to walk off cheese and wine in). It also looks promising that our dear friend Jeff Hallman will also be in attendance from Germany, as he is one of our stars in The New Orleans Sazerac.

Someone gave us some great advice – don’t put too many expectations for professional meetings on our Cannes experience. It’s going to be a busy trip with a million people all around, and we should just be grateful that we are there. We should enjoy every second of just being at Cannes. If we score a few meetings, then that’s the cherry on top. If nothing else we plan to network the shit out of it.

Other things in life – families are good, pets are happy, house is wonderful and Eldon the Bus is almost a real live boy. I am so looking forward to when we can travel around in the Eldon… I just feel like it’s going to be a new layer of freedom. We are going to start introducing him to the cats soon so they can become comfortable with being on it. Cilantro already loves being on the bus. I’m really happy that we decided to take this project on. Cheers to James for leading the charge!


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