I’ll speak for myself here; with its long takes/classical directing style and old school cinematography (by the great Ken Kelsch); ERIC RED’s 100 FEETstarring Famke Janssen, Ed Westwick, Bobby Cannavale and yours truly as Jimmy was always meant to be a big screen experience. Alas, the movie was finished when the film market collapsed and distribution as we knew it went tits up, hence it wound up straight to TV then DVD.
On that I am elated to report that Writer/Director and my compadre ERIC RED will be hosting a double bill 35MM screening of 100 FEET (and his classic BODY PARTS) at Alamo Drafthouse in Denver, Colorado on Thursday October 27th 2016 (GET THE INFO AND TICKETS HERE)! So many of you will get the opportunity to witness it on the big screen, the way it was meant to be seen in the first place.
I look back at 100 FEET with much fondness as it was a first for me on many levels.
1- I played against type (nervous/insecure tech dude)
2- Finally got to be in an Eric Red film, which was along term goal of mine.
3- I acted alongside two acting powerhouses (Janssen and Cannavale). My cherry got popped!
4- I had to deliver an “exposition laced” quasi monologue (I basically set up the rules of the movie) and make it sound “organic”. Never had to that before (or since). To this day I remember my lines
5- Learned so much watching Eric Red at work. I’m a better director today for it.
It was also on that set that I met Michael Pare (who wound up being the lead in my directorial debut The Shelter), visited Eastern Europe for the first time (the flick was shot in Budapest) and also learned the hard way that downing a Coca Cola is not the best thing to do right before acting in a scene (duh) being that one needs to be relaxed to act, Coke did not “relax” me…lol!
To celebrate the film’s big screen showing, I decided to dig up some obscure BEHIND THE SCENES shots from the film for y’all! Tap them below! 100 FEET goes full circle. I am happy!
Looking back at 2015, all I remember off hand are two things: 1- Greg Plitt died out of no where on January 17 of 2015 (a man who helped me get back on track via his site/videos years ago. His passing prompted me to go back to his site and once again he helped a lot this year) and my film THE SHELTER, which took over the bulk of my thoughts and efforts. The film resulted in some positive things like cool festival runs, positive reviews, meeting new people, making new contacts and new opportunities arising.
Work hard – play hard. Always.
It also came with its fair share of hardships (that I will go into when all is said and done some day – I may write a book ) and some trial by fire i.e. gaining further knowledge as to the current state of the film market through my mistakes. Shelter aside, I actually had to look back at my 2015 pictures to remind me of what else I did that year and yeah, I had yet another groovy year of doing what makes me happy: training, nature, my friends, traveling and challenging myself.
Top of my head here are some of my favorite personal moments of 2015!
Tackled one of the biggest mountains I have ever scaled. What a rush. I want more!
My dad got hit with larynx cancer early this year. I was sure he was a goner, but the man fought (respect) and with the help of our support, he prevailed. Happy to still have him around.
In Paris, France with the Dead Shadows cast/crew for an autograph session. It was so cool to see everybody again, to be in Paris, a city that I love, and to spend time with the Cholewa clan aka awesome people.
The Shelter had its world premiere at Frightfest in the UK and we got lots of solid reviews out of it. It was a great moment to share with exec producer/buddy Berge Garabedian, Seeing old friends (Richard Cosgrove!) and drinking Trooper Ale were also big pluses :)
Spent even more time at the lake house. Can’t go wrong when your time is all about nature, training, reading, exploring, writing and the water.
Although the Sitges Film Festival The Shelter screening didn’t go as well as I wanted it to for varied reasons (image problems on our DCP being one of them), I got to hang with my brother Mike Hostench, hit some fly parties, appreciated the setting once again, had fun with Rurik Salle and met new great peeps like Julien Seri and Pascal Sid. VIVA SITGES!
Eric Red and I worked on the same set together for the first time time since 100 Feet. This time I did second unit directing/camera work and took on set pics. Without going into details; the war that was this set solidified my brotherhood with Eric. And for that and the experience – I was grateful…
Streamlining The Shelter, which is a film that addresses spirituality or lack of, has been responsible for an evolution in my own spiritual path. Hence after Sitges, I spend a week in Barcelona with my bro Gonzalo. We wound up having a pilgrimage of sorts and I found it very rewarding.
I was very happy to see The Shelter screen at the prestigious A Night of Horror Film Festival in Australia. The crowd dug it and star Michael Pare won a career achievement award for his work in the film. Twas a good ending for The Shelter in 2015
At Greg Plitt’s place of death. It was very important for me to pay respect. He inspired/motivated me so much all year, it was the least I could do. It took hours to find the exact spot of his passing. Was worth it. RIP Legend.
In terms of negatives, I’m not one to dwell on those cause, well, what will that achieve? Nothing. I’ll just say that the odd energy around The Shelter gave me a run for my patience, maximum effort often led to maximum frustrations as opposed to results and knives stabbed in my back here and a severe “misjudgement of character on my part” there should be noted… nothing new at this point, people are people. Lastly, my 14 year old dog is on her way out (going deaf, blind and very old) it’s coming and I am bracing myself… such is life.
My dog Toby can’t swim alone anymore…she’s too old. I still have her work-out though. Use it or lose it.
I feel very positive in terms of 2016 though (just got back from a stay in the wilderness – that always sets me right)! The Shelter will screen at a handful of Festivals and will lock distribution, am pumped to get my next film The Prize off the ground, I’m starting boxing again (after dealing with a stubborn tennis elbow in 2015 that got in my way, I finally healed it), I’ll be part of handful of exciting projects (as a writer and actor), already have some traveling on the horizon, mother nature is always in my plans and I will focus on awakening by creative side again, specially when it comes to writing for myself. Producing The Shelter in 2015 kind of numbed by creative juices, I won’t let that happen this year. That’s it in a nutshell! Welcome to 2016 people! I leave you with my 2016 National Anthem:
I am happy to announce that I am now attached as a producer to Eric Red’s next film No Man’s Ridge; a terrific project that deliverers the goods on all counts. No Man’s Ridge is about:
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.
This will be the DEFINITIVE Bigfoot movie. More news on the film soon!
Writer/Director Eric Red recently put out some goods from a film he’s gearing up called NO MAN’S RIDGE and you can see them here! The flick is a found-footage movie that follows a group of extreme hunters who go out in the wild to nab the most prestigious trophy of them all: Bigfoot. As you can see by John Gallagher’s scary creature design – this Bigfoot ain’t the cuddling kind! The film is presently in development and yes I have a role in it. I play one of the hunters, a French Quebec dude by the name of Raymond. Check out the sizzle reel they made to pitch the project below! Can’t wait for this one to happen, it’s a fantastic script! Mean spirited, action packed and gory as hell. My kind of movie!
If there’s one movie I was involved in (I play Jimmy in the flick) that got a bum rap in terms of distribution, it was Eric Red’s 100 FEET. Its a superior, old school, ghost story that deserved MUCH better than what it got. And no I am not just saying that cause I am in it and cause Red is my amigo. I am saying it cause I fucking mean it. Now, a never seen before behind the scenes look at the film was recently released, check it out below. 100 FEET stars Famke Janssen, Bobby Cannavale and Mike Pare. An ideal movie to rent on Halloween.
Am back from LA and I accomplished what I set out to do. First and foremost I went there to heal my noggin; after a 6 months bout with health issues, I got the physical part under control; LA was to gap the psychological part, trauma if you will. Yup, I was still shook up before I left, I’m not anymore. Finally!
Another goal of mine was to meet up with some old and new film industry pals. Although I didn’t get to see everybody I wanted while there (sorry to those I couldn’t hang with), I did my best. Special shout out goes out to my good bud Donny Brousard who came down for a weekend (always nice 2 see that mofo) and to the Christian Sesma/Paul Sloan crew.Was great to finally meet those dudes in person, they reminded of my boys at home, no bull, down to earth and ready to rumble – I respected that.
With Donny B.
Finally I went there to explore the film industry, see what’s going on and got pretty much what I expected to get. There’s no money in Hollywood right now, every producer I met as to my projects had the same spiel: “You got money, distribution or stars attached?” – hey man, If I had that, I wouldn’t need you . In terms of finished products, there is a demand, but buyers want shit for free or for chump change. I give it two years till the infra structure is reset and money starts circulating more. This year’s AFM should be another bust…fuck… that. But am not discouraged, am working on something tight here, a horror project that I am inches away from finishing and that I will be directing. Moreover, Eric Red and I are cooking something as well and we’re stubborn mofos and won’t exit the kitchen till the cake rises.
With Eric Red.
Any negatives on this trip? Well I did learn the hard way that doing tequila shots while on a diet is a bad fucking idea but hey what can you do, I’m only human, I fuck up… so its get over it and get on with it as a good bud of mine always says.Also got the sad sack 411 on TRANCE (a script I wrote that got shot and has been in limbo ever since) from varied sources – finally know what’s going down with that fucking flick… but that’s another story, one that I will delve in deeply in due time, specially in light of recent developments.
With Sesma and Sloan
All in all my LA trip was a groovy one. Loved Santa Monica, loved Malibu (jogged by Emilio “Bill the Kid” Estevez’ house :), loved the parties, loved the strip and loved having time and room to write, write, write. Big thanks to Eric Red and his lovely wife Meredith for putting up with my shit for a month. Although my return home started with a middle finger up (there was a flood in my place, fried my PC and printer…sigh) am still feeling positive about being back and in tackling the second half of the year. I got new answers, hence a fresh outlook; onward and forward!
The fine ghost film I was part of ERIC RED’S 100 FEET will spook DVD shelves on October 20, but you can pre order it here if ya want.
The flick stars Famke Janssen, Michael Pare and Bobby Cannavale and in it I play a cop named Jimmy, I call him “Captain Exposition” cause that’s why he’s there, to lay down the rules of the film for the lead character and for the audience. A great project to be a part of. Why it didn’t go theatrical is still beyond me.