I used to really dread fathers day. As some of you probably know my dad was a very important figure in my life and he passed away awhile back. My Dad was only person in my family that inspire me to follow my dreams and I’d like to share a little bit about him with you all.
My father was Frank Allen Calvert. He was kind of an old dad. He was 55 when I was 24. During the day he was a set dresser and a lead man for the film industry in Los Angeles. Basically David Duchovny character in Californication minus being a writer. Literally talked the same with very similar jokes etc. It was so awkward watching that show. I also really need to update his IMDB, he worked on over 40 films.
In between gigs he would often go off in secret and do covert missions for the military. He was a former Marine and a veteran from the Vietnam war. Which meant he wasn’t always around. So he would send postcards and we would exchange letters. I saved every single one.
Often during summer I would spend my vacation time with him on movie sets. Movies like Three kings and Jurassic Park are a couple of the films I was on set for as a kid. It was amazing and sometimes boring. Mostly boring when they were building the fake sets and I was stuck reading my comics. Not terrible. I remember meeting Elijah Wood and hanging out with him while he was on set of Radio flyer. We used to play a game where my father or I would throw candy in his onset classroom and he’d catch it before it hit the ground. When my Dad did Princess Diaries 2, he arranged for me to have lunch with Anne Hathaway once on set, she was really sweet and smart. For a couple years Richard Gere sent us Christmas gifts. Like Chinese medicine balls and stuff like that related to the Red Corner. A really nice guy. That’s pretty much all my famous encounters.
I used to read the movie scripts he had before they the film came out, it was so funny seeing how stories developed. Often times things in the script never made it to screen.
Eventually I wanted to start telling my own stories. I thought I wanted to do film school but discovered they started to teach game design. Games were important to me and I always thought they were one of the best storytelling mediums. My family wanted me to be a doctor or dentist. Two fields that I admire for the simple fact they help others but I wanted to help people in a different way. My father was the only one to support me. He helped me with my first apartment deposit and would send me Safeway gift cards to buy food. I was barely eating when in school.
I did art school for almost two years not really learning anything. The program was so new being taught by noobs. Then by pure chance I was inserted into the world of start ups helping grow Disqus. I decided to take a chance and do it. When I made the decision to leave school my Dad sent me this.
I think he knew I was onto something and just wanted to support me with my dreams. He was a good man and I strive to be as good as him. That’s a little about my old man and some of the crazy things I was able to do because of him. I miss him every day.