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The Proposal to screen at the Landshut Short Film Festival

We’re happy to announce that after it’s successful premiere at the SITGES Film Festival late last year, our retro action short The Proposal (film that I wrote and co produced) will be screening at the Landshut Short Film Festival on March 22nd in Munich, Germany! Congrats to all involved!

The film is Directed by Ben Whimpey (producer of Quanta and Arrowhead), Produced by Antonio Raiola, Edited by Elizna van der Walt while the Juzzy Kane was the DP.  The Music is by Dmitri Golovko. It also stars Kahli Williams (Neighbors), action star Paul Allica (Trigonal) and actor/stuntman Lincoln Barros (The Wheel).

Synopsis: When gun for hire and all around tough customer Mason Stone (Marc Natoli) takes his long time girlfriend Emma (Kahli Williams) out on the town with the intent of popping the big question, he finds his proposal plans rudely interrupted by a group of highly skilled assassins who are after him. What’s a man to do in this kind of situation? Only one thing: kick butt.

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My 2018 in short and my top personal moments!

“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised.” James 1:12

Ahhh 2018… good f-ing riddance. I had an inkling that the year was gonna be a tough one when it started out with a knock on the door from the police after New Years Eve, telling me that a family member was found near death in a snow bank, and if she would have been there 20 minutes longer, she would have died  due to hypothermia. Thankfully she was saved but I was sadly right – 2018 was gonna be an endurance test of epic proportions.

Still found solace in nature.

What followed was pretty much a relentless beat down. Sickness in the family, health ailments of my own (knee, arm, foot problems) hence keeping me out of the gym and stopping me from hiking/climbing (which are the ways that I stay sane), then there was a cancer scare (which wound up being a false diagnosis but the stress it brought to my life was silly), then a family member was arrested by the cops and taken away, then my grandma died… the fun (sarcasm) just wouldn’t stop.

The cherry on top was that I got swindled real good business wise and lost out on a considerable amount of coin and I’m still dealing with it (lawyers, police and such). I knew the risk going in, but when it fell through, it hurt my pockets and acted as a domino affect in terms of affecting the purchase of my new house. Looking back at that biz misstep, I’m not sure what’s worse – being ripped off or my ego taking a hit – but what can you do except learn from your mistakes and not repeat them.

Was awesome getting back out in the wild and battling the elements.

On the upside, the year wasn’t a total loss. I wound beating my injuries just in time for winter and got back out there. And although I didn’t travel as much as I usually do, I did wind up taking a couple of a key trips. And after much struggling, I did get my house and that was for me a huge win. I come from a low-income family, was raised in apartments the bulk of my life and was always told that we were born to live with very little and to accept it. I never did. So for me to get this house – which is everything I’ve always wanted (in the wildness, big, with a spa, a pool and close to the mountains) was a huge accomplishment and the fact that it was not made easy, an even bigger one.

Am not alone in loving our new house. 🙂

Moreover two films that I’m attached to moved forward. The horror film Woodland Grey wrapped filming (am a producer on it) and the short film The Proposal (am a producer on  it and wrote it) got to premiere at the Sitges FIlm Festival and got rave reviews. This was also the year of Marc Natoli (whom I had met on The Siege set last year). I traveled to the UK, Barcelona and Sitges with the lad and he then came down to stay at my home to hustle (that prick is still here) and now we got great things lined up. It’s a blessing to meet a guy that works as hard as I do, that can keep up with me on every front, that I can learn from fighting wise and that’s also as easy going as I am. A new brother!

Finally my passion project HERETIC made some major headway over the course of the year. I couldn’t be happier with the people I have onboard (love working with Producer Asko Akopyan) and I’m beyond excited to see how it all unfolds in 2019. The ducks are lined up. Lets bring her home! With that, here are my Top 6 fav moments of 2018.

Against all odds I got my new house. My dream house. And I guess the victory is all that much sweeter because it was a fight and a half to get it. Every obstacle you can think of was tossed my way, but I persevered and won. Highlight of my year!
Took a trip to London, England with my bro Marc Natoli. Saw the Templar sights, met some cool people (Rachel!!!) and partied a little too hard but hey, all part of the fun.
Visited Barcelona Spain with Marc Natoli. Had an epic meet-up with my brother Mike Hostench, one that we will all remember for a while…lol, got to explore the city further (yes, more Templar sights) and see old friends (Gonz!). Good times!
Last time I acted was in The Siege of Robin Hood (which I also produced), so it was nice to get a random gig in Broken Trust, playing yet another scumbag. I had forgotten how it felt to just be on set as an actor. Was almost like a vacation.
Visited Pittsburgh with my bro Berge Garabedian and went to an old school arcade convention. Retro video games + drinks + all we can can play = great times!
Our short film The Proposal premiered at the Sitges Film Festival. The film played well and made way for new opportunities and it was awesome to catch up with old and dear friends (Mike and Sarah Hostench, Greg Nicotero…) and meet new ones.  Once again Sitges was simply a blast on all fronts!

BONUS:

Got to shake Chuck Norris hand and exchange a “God bless” – nough said.

So all in all, although 2018 just kept bombarding me with vicious sucker punches, I take pride in the fact that I not only took the hits and never quit, but I also managed to pull off of some wins throughout the beat down. I have a lot set up for 2019, am excited for the year as I am wiser, more hardened (who knew that was possible) and as persistent as ever. My gut tells me that 2019 will be the year of winning. So here we go again! Happy New Year! One more more round! Go get it!

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No Man’s Ridge round 2! Eric Red’s Bigfoot film to stomp skulls in 2019!

Writer/Director/Producer Eric Red and I have been working on our no-holds-barred action/horror movie NO MAN’S RIDGE for a while now and 2019 will be the year!

We’ve managed to raise some financing and we now aim to launch a crowdfunding campaign in mid 2019 to gap the missing funds and make the ultimate Bigfoot movie!

Here’s our crew so far! Producer and Special Makeup Effects Supervisor: Robert Kurtzman (The Haunting of Hill House and From Dusk Till Dawn). – Producer and Special Makeup Effects Designer: Steve Johnson (Ghostbusters, Bad Moon). John Fallon (The Shelter, Heretic) and Meredith Red also Produce while Berge Garabedian is Executive Producer on the picture.

And the cast at this stage is: Actor/Stuntman Nick Principe (Laid to Rest series) Actor and Martial Arts expert Marc Natoli (The Proposal) as Jack and John Fallon (SAW II) as Ray.

The Synopsis: A helicopter soars over the forests in the remote Wyoming wilderness of No Man’s Ridge area. Inside are five heavily armed and formidable hunters all dressed in militarized camouflage fatigues and face paint. They have state-of-the-art high-powered rifles, heavy caliber handguns, crossbows and hunting gear. The extreme hunters are there to bag a Bigfoot— the ultimate hunt for the ultimate trophy. The hunters wear hat cams with compact high-resolution HD cameras to record the hunt. They also have gun cams for their rifle barrels, bow cams and portable trail cameras to put on trees. In the far reaches of the wilds, the people are dropped from the hovering chopper by cable into deep forest, fifty miles from civilization. When the five hunters see an actual giant Bigfoot walking through the woods a half-mile away, it seems like the creature doesn’t have a chance—but it’s the other way around.

You can follow the films progress on FACEBOOK, TWITTER and INSTAGRAM.

 

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The Shelter now available to watch for free on Tubi TV!


If there’s one thing that I learned via making The Shelter is that a film stays with you for a long time when you’re the director and head producer on it. The flick was released at the end of 2016 and here I am still talking about it!

On that, you can now watch The Shelter for free on Tubi TV (expect some Ads during your watch though – which is not ideal). Shut the lights, pump up the volume and pour yourself a stiff drink (you’ll need it) and check it out here! https://tubitv.com/movies/435624/the_shelter

Or you can get the DVD here or watch it on VOD Ad free here!

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Ode to 80’s action The Proposal gets a trailer! Feature film version a possibility?


Our ode to 80’s action The Proposal now has a trailer! Check it out below!

On a  side note, although I had written off doing a feature length version of the short – the solid reception it got via its Sitges premiere and the critics, got interest from some big players – and when money talks – you know the rest – so we’re exploring all avenues at the moment. Lets see what the Movie Gods have in store for us. Who knows?

And for everybody that’s asking me where they can see the short; I hope to have an answer for you sooner than late. The Proposal stars Marc Natoli and Kahli Williams. it was Directed by Ben Whimpey, Produced by Antonio Raiola and Written By and Co Produced by yours truly.

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Bruise Productions Inc. looking for “fight themed” screenplay!

Hey all, we are presently actively searching for a FINISHED “fight themed” (can be Boxing which would be ideal, but can also be MMA, Kickboxing etc.) screenplay for development. We need something that is character driven and with a male lead. Something with heart and grit – a drama with fight scenes – not the other way around. Think more Rocky and less Bloodsport. If you’re a screenwriter and you have something of the sort, send us your logline/synopsis HERE. Thank you and God bless!

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Sitges Film Fest premiere done! The Proposal reviews kick in!

Marc Natoli and I were at the Sitges Film Festival to premiere the retro action short film The Proposal (beautifully Directed by Ben Whimpey and Produced by Antonio Raiola). Marc was producer, fight choreographer and lead actor on it while and I wrote and co produced the thing.

The main reason I got onboard The Proposal was to introduce newcomer Marc Natoli to an international film audience/industry. The man can act, has 25 years of martial arts experience under his belt, has the right mindset and is a certified 3rd Degree Bruce Lee instructor. And what better place to break Natoli in the biz on a high level than the Sitges Film Festival!

I am happy to report that The Proposal was well received and it achieved what I wanted it to achieve. Now to build off it! In fact, Natoli and I presently have an action feature in development, so stay tuned on that! A huge thank you to the Sitges Film festival for their support. Still the best festival in the world. Here are some of the Proposal reviews that surfaced after Sitges!

Sitges Red Carpet

THE ACTION ELITE
“Once Natoli is on screen you know he will be capable of bringing the pain to all comers… and he doesn’t disappoint.”

“I’ve always been a fan of John Fallon’s writing as he hearkens back to the Grindhouse/Exploitation days in his movies like Deaden or American Muscle however, The Proposal almost feels more accessible for the casual viewer and fans of old-school action fare.”

“The Proposal left me hungry for more and I would love to see it with a bigger budget and longer runtime but as it stands Marc Natoli is one to watch.”

-FULL REVIEW HERE

ACTION FLIX.COM:
“Marc Natoli takes center stage for the first time and with it, he announces himself as the new contender in on screen martial arts action.”

“Ben Whimpey, keeps everything moving at a brisk pace and never lets anything lag from beginning to end. If he can do this with 12 minutes then he should definitely be allowed to helm a bigger action spectacle. “

“Producer and writer John Fallon’s script is chock full of awesome action one liners.”

FULL REVIEW HERE

FILMESETAL.COM
“The Proposal’s production values feel very high budget. All the great qualities are there. The action scenes are top notch (better than a bunch of movies and Netflix shows – cough Iron Fist cough.), the comedy is there. All around great writing. 

Fallon was able to pack a lot into so little. That takes a lot of mastery. This script could easily be turned into a game, a full-length movie (I could see a franchise being born from that), or a kick-ass series. The director, Ben Whimpey was able to get what Fallon crafted and shot it beautifully. “

“Natoli is poised for greatness, an action star in the making!”

FULL REVIEW HERE

FILM COMBAT SYNDICATE
“The fight scenery isn’t too far off and neither are some of the quips and one-liners that will give you a chuckle in between.

“Narrating between select scenes for the suited affect, Natoli delivers both in fine form, particularly having serviced the fight choreography.”

“It puts Natoli on the map for all of us to be aware of!”

FULL REVIEW HERE

WE CAME FROM THE BASEMENT
“This is a slick little movie that has the look and feel of a larger production. The camera work and production values are top notch, as are the performances. “

“Natoli is a martial arts expert, and it shows. The fights are fluid, but not too showy. They look real, and painful, and are a lot of fun to watch.”

“Fallon’s script hits all the right notes, taking a 90-minute concept and making it work in a short amount of time. “

FULL REVIEW HERE

ARROW IN THE HEAD
“The film is all about sporting an 80’s action vibe and I dug the hell out of all the details. THE PROPOSAL knows (for the most part) just why those films were as badass, charming, and enduring as they were. This quick flick doesn’t forget to sport a sense of humor, and the subgenre-required after-kill punchlines and puns are right on for this kind of film.”

“Marc Natoli as our main hero, Mason Stone, is just right for the part; brimming with muscle for days, the man handles the action with ease. But being that this is equal parts 80’s action throw-down and light romantic comedy, Natoli also handles the charm, and comedic touches, with just the right amount of pizzazz. Kahli Williams is beyond gorgeous and possesses more than her fair share of acting skills to boot”

FULL REVIEW HERE

Presenting The Proposal before a packed house.
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Horror film Woodland Grey now in Production!

The elevated horror film WOODLAND GREY is now in Production in Montreal, Canada. Award Winning director Adam Reider (Remain Calm) helms the picture from a screenplay written by Reider and Jesse Toufexis.

The film stars Jenny Raven (Jack Ryan), Ryan Blakely (The Expanse) and screen icon Art Hindle (Black Christmas). It is produced by Francesco Giannini (The Flare), Tamara Dupuis (Marjorie) and yours truly.

On set with producer Frank Giannani.

Synopsis: When an older man living alone in the woods saves the life of a young woman, they are forced to coexist. Chaos ensues when the woman makes a terrifying discovery in the woods behind the man’s home and unleashes something truly haunting.

You can follow the production on:

FacebookInstagram Twitter

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80’s-90’s action film homage The Proposal has World Premiere at the Sitges Film Festival!

Od ton80’s-90’s  action short film THE PROPOSAL (which I wrote and co-produced) will be having its world premiere at the prestigious Sitges Film Festival (see its page here) in Catalonia Spain.

It will screen at the Tramuntana Meliá Sitges Theatre on October 10, 2018 at 4:00PM. You can get your tickets here! Star, producer and martial arts expert Marc Natoli and myself will be in attendance to support the picture. My Sitges friends better be there, belly well fed with beer, ready to have a good time! 😉

The film is Directed by Ben Whimpey (producer of Quanta and Arrowhead), Produced by Antonio Raiola, Edited by Elizna van der Walt while the Juzzy Kane was the DP.  The Music is by Dmitri Golovko. It also stars Kahli Williams (Neighbors), action star Paul Allica (Trigonal) and actor/stuntman Lincoln Barros (The Wheel).

Synopsis: When gun for hire and all around tough customer Mason Stone (Marc Natoli) takes his long time girlfriend Emma (Kahli Williams) out on the town with the intent of popping the big question, he finds his proposal plans rudely interrupted by a group of highly skilled assassins who are after him. What’s a man to do in this kind of situation? Only one thing: kick butt.

Natoli Productions, ARR Productions, Indimax Productions and Bruise Productions are behind the film.

You can follow the production via the Official Instagram page here:
https://www.instagram.com/proposal_film/

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My episode of Broken Trust, new interview and The Proposal wraps!

Hey all! A couple of updates to share!

-The episode of Broken Trust episode I starred in (Home Protection) on Investigation Discovery recently aired!  If you missed it like I did, you can also check it out on Direct TV! Was fun to play yet another “mentally unbalanced” character. Compared to writing, producing or directing – acting is a holiday for me 🙂

Had a nice little chat with Matt’s Movie Reviews.net about The Shelter now that everybody can see it around the world. Give it a listen HERE! Probably the last time I’ll talk about the film in the press. Yet again you can watch The Shelter on VOD here: https://goo.gl/24eGsz 7 and on DVD here: https://goo.gl/5hAkNr

Last but certainly not least the action short that I wrote The Proposal just wrapped today! It stars actor/martial artist Marc Natoli (who also produced) and actress Kahli Williams, is directed by Ben Whimpey while Antonio Raiola was lead producer. Find out more about the film HERE! We got a big announcement in our back pocket in terms of the film’s first screening, so stay tuned! You’re not done hearing about The Proposal! That’s it for now, back to work!

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