Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Jared Mobarak Reviews WE JUST WANT TO PLAY

wejustwanttoplay01

REVIEW: WE JUST WANT TO PLAY [2013]

Score: 4/10 | ★ ½

Rating: NR | Runtime: 17 minutes | Release Date: May 4th, 2013 (US)
Studio: Matt Freund Media / Team 3 Productions
Director(s): James Cappadoro
Writer(s): Frank De Rosa
“You can never turn a profit in a market this saturated”
To view a collegiate short film with a critical eye—this being the filmmakers’ Quinnipiac University senior capstone project—is a tough thing to do when outside of the educational setting and not necessarily privy to the time and effort put forth like a teacher in charge. It’s easy to simply dismiss amateurish performances and hamfisted scripting as lapses in quality without looking at the big picture of where everyone is coming from. We Just Want to Play isn’t going to be showing at local multiplexes nor is it aspiring for awards; it’s the result of a group of students working hard to create something of which they can be proud.
Written by Frank De Rosa and directed by James Cappadoro, this short comedy homage to National Lampoon’s Animal House wears its shortcomings on its sleeve out of necessity and not laziness. You use what you have at your disposal and have a great time doing it—something the outtakes prove true for this group. The downside to this is that one finds it difficult to really see true intention when the delivery mechanism is obviously tainted by inexperience and a lack of options. To watch college kids speak their lines with even the slightest amount of stiffness can be distracting to the jokes, the meaning, and ultimately the words themselves.
The film is a fun update of material that takes Animal House’s soon-to-be-shutdown frat house of eccentrics and turns it into a Ruckland University rugby team playing beyond their talents. A bunch of sex-crazed stoners the school would surely love to prevent from representing them on a national level, these men have unceremoniously found their way into the championship. Unfortunately for them, however, Artistic Director Dickerman (Timothy J. Cox playing his usual snide and smarmy authoritarian) is unimpressed and desperately hoping to strip them of their scholarships to most likely put towards the golf team his son Tim (Andrew Gill) captains. Facing an advisory board vote on whether they’ll remain a school fixture, it’s only a matter of time before their final nail is hammered in.
Responsible Glen (Lars Lee) and depraved miscreant Ray (Trevor Williams) look to rally the team together by joining an Olympiad event with prize money to get them to the title game regardless, but nothing seems to go right. This is especially true for guys filming half naked women in hopes of internet notoriety with no qualms about piling white plumes of cocaine on their basement bar. It’s college debauchery at its finest with the good girls needing to escape (Alexandra Bartley’s Whitney) and the reasonable guys still very much complicit in the lewd acts. The co-ed lifestyle depicted is one of contemporary hooligans raised on stories of consequence-free debauchery with little but the endearing nature of their unity to rally around.
Sadly, comedic tropes like zany sports announcers not-so-subtly breaking the fourth wall and freeze-frame heavy exposition seem a hair off. Would more seasoned acting have rendered it more effective? Maybe. Does the ambition to tell a story with so many characters diminish as a result? No. You have to credit these guys for going all in and making a professional looking work despite obvious limitations. Talent is noticeably apparent behind the scenes even if the cast lacks the authenticity necessary to truly see past artifice. But it feels like a college film because it is a college film. While seeing it as more than a welcome beginning for its creators might be misguided, it’s definitely a fun accomplishment as an exercise towards those means.

Final Version of CHOOSING SIDES

Choosing Sides from Lee Loechler on Vimeo.

Auditions / Projects Coming Up For NYU Summer Film Workshop

Today, I heard from 3 young directors who are participating in the NYU Summer Film Workshop. This is how I worked met and worked with director Daniel Lachman on THE LITTLE MAGICIAN a few years back. Usually, these projects are short, half day film shoots that give actors a chance to work with young filmmakers about to start their freshman year at NYU. 

I had such a fun time working on the project a few years back that I submitted to a few projects today and snagged a role (or several) in SHOES, for Drew Gannon and Scott Schuler, which is a comedy about Dave; a doorman in an interdimensional void, all he wants is some new shoes. I will be playing several, different comedic roles. The shoot is on Sunday morning, so that will be fun. 


While speaking with Drew, he also informed me about another project, also shooting on Sunday. Still waiting on the details on that project.


Tomorrow, I'll be meeting with director Sophie Peters-Wilson, to discuss her project THE DIVORCE, about a young girl who sorts through her families memories after finding out about her parents divorce, ultimately realizing that the divorce is for the better. I will be reading for the role of a father. 


All of these could be a lot of fun. 



Smithwhick's Audition Yesterday

I can't really say how yesterday's audition went because, well, I was never called in. I reported to the audition site on 19th Street a few minutes before my call time, checked in and then waited for close to 40 minutes, while no one called me in. So, after 40 minutes of waiting, I left.

I'm more irritated with American Talent Management for sending me on this audition, for a role I never had a snowball's chance in hell of getting. Smithwhick's was looking for big Irish bruiser types. Did ATM look at my reel? Resume? My face? If they had bothered to look at any of these items, they would see that I wouldn't have been the right fit for a big bruiser type.

Makes me wonder if they know what they're doing.

Movies Quotes and More Reviews TROUBLE

http://www.moviequotesandmore.com/trouble-2013-movie-review.html

Trouble (2013) Movie Review

by Parissa Janaraghi


Character Study with Touches of Humor


It's hard to give a full explanation of what Trouble is about as it's more of a short character study than a story that has a beginning, middle and ending. This 12 minute short was created as a senior thesis, written and directed by Daniel Witkin. It's about a boy, Isaac, who is in an academy for juvenile delinquents and life in there is tough for him as he's being bullied by a much tougher looking boy, Greg (Max Carpenter) and at the same time the academy's Headmaster (Timothy J. Cox), has them doing play acting exercises where they are telling each other the correct way to solve their problems, but of course as soon as the class is over Greg carries on bullying Isaac. It gets so bad for Isaac that he attempts to escape but this fails until he hatches a plan to escape during the academy's annual Christmas dance.

As the subject of the story is not an easy one to convey, Witkin has chosen to tell it in a dramedy fashion with slight touches of humor sprinkled throughout the film as we follow Isaac in his daily life in the academy and the way he handles the bullying and to finally managing to pull off his escape plan. The actors all give solid performances, the parts that really stood out for me and lightened the mood of the film were the 'wooden fake acting' scenes, in which Isaac and Greg are reading the lines the Headmaster had given them during class with the Headmaster watching and urging them on pompously. Also, the last scene in which we see Isaac's escape plan come into fruition stands out, as again a difficult moment is handled with a comedic touch as we literally see Isaac having the last laugh.

Trouble is not a perfect short and not an easy subject matter to watch but Witkin has managed to make an uneasy subject watchable by its light touches of humor and cleverness. As a film debut this is definitely a promising start.

5/10

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Audition For A Smithwhick's Commercial Today

Got a call last evening from American Talent Management about an audition for a Smithwhick's Beer commercial. The audition is today in Manhattan. The casting people are looking for an Irish bruiser type. Yeah, we'll see how this goes.

Monday, July 29, 2013

CHOOSING SIDES Is Online!

Here's the comedy short CHOOSING SIDES, directed by Lee Loechler, written by Yael Green and featuring Rachel Lynn Jackson and Max Abe Plush.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

MOVING MOUNTAINS Shoot Yesterday

Yesterday's shoot was pleasant and fast paced. Director Kyle Schickner ran a relaxed set and kept things moving at a quick pace. We knocked out my scene as manager Lawrence Delan is just a couple of hours. It was a pleasure working with actresses Laura DiSiena (as Sienna, the teenager who becomes an overnight sensation) and Heather Tait as Siena's fame driven mother. We filmed the scene several times and Kyle was pretty confident that he got what he needed. It'll likely be some time before I see this, as they will be heading out to Los Angeles to film a scene for the series shortly.

It was a pleasure to be involved with MOVING MOUNTAINS. Thanks to Kyle and the entire cast and crew.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Always Watch Good Movies On MALLAS, MA

Here's a mini review, available for viewing on Facebook, of MALLAS, MA, from the film blog Always Watch Good Movies. You can view it here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Always-Watch-Good-Movies/462492480442061


MALLAS, MA (USA, 2013) //short-film//
Sean Meehan

Sean Meehan's fifth short film is an 8-minute funny ride into the world of ghosts, where a couple of paranormal investigators will try to find some unusual activity in a supposed haunted basement.
The film creates an interesting mood, combining perfectly the camera work, sharp photography by Rick Macomber, and penetrating original score handled by Cesar Suarez. Another positive aspect was the performances by Timothy J.Cox and Maria Natapov. 

Disarming in its simplicity, “Mallas, MA” was an agreeable surprise that shows the talent of those involved in it. The film was part of the Boston's 48 Hour Film Project, ending up with the audience award in its respective group.

You can find more about the film and the 48 Hour Film Project by clicking the links below:
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2986672/
http://www.48hourfilm.com/en/boston/

Some New Photos from THE 39 STEPS




Thursday, July 25, 2013

Swan Song

I haven't said much about Swan Song as of late because, well, there hasn't been anything to say about it.

Back in early April, I received the footage from the March 16th shoot for the IndieGoGo campaign. It wasn't fully edited...not yet perfect, which was fine and to be expected, but what I saw did give me an idea of where the project was heading and to be honest, after watching the footage several times, I wasn't too thrilled with what I saw. I won't get into too many specifics, but I will say that after the viewings, I came to the conclusion that Swan Song just wouldn't come out the way I envisioned if the project moved forward. At this point, I'm 100% certain that the project is not going to happen anytime soon and you know what, I'm fine with it. If it's not going to be what I envisioned, I'd rather the film not be made.

On the positive side, I will say that both Jeff Moffitt and Dan Berkey were marvelous and again, I wish to thank them for their work. I am saddened that the film will not come to life, but as I always say, there are always other projects.

Lines, Lines, Lines

Last night, I tackled the final 4 pages of my scene in MOVING MOUNTAINS. Now I'll run them all in my head a thousand times.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Cinema-Crazed Reviews MALLAS, MA

I don't think this critic realized that the film was written, shot and edited in 48 hours. Happy for the nice remarks about Sean (richly deserved) though.  

http://cinemacrazed.wordpress.com/2013/07/24/mallas-ma-2013/

Mallas, MA (2013)
     
 
One of the major highlights of “Mallas, MA” is the immense direction from director Sean Meehan. “Mallas, MA” feels like a feature length film busting from the seams of its short film trappings, and while the film itself is fine, I wanted more. Surely, the idea of ghost hunters getting more than they bargained for has been done, but there could be a real unique turn here about crises of conscience and respecting the dead, in the end. “Mallas, MA” benefits from the incredible direction from Sean Meehan who just has a clear visual idea of what he wants this film to be.
 
It’s whimsical and comical but slightly spooky to boot. The opening scene features a large tracking shot of an entire town panning over to the title sequence that literally made me mutter “Whoa” aloud. Meehan has a great eye for whimsy and the supernatural, and the Fix It In Post team concoct a decent short film. Tim Cox and Maria Natapov play two con artists who make their money off of traveling to towns across the country and finding ghosts for an obscene charge. When they stumble upon a young Asian girl in an attic during one of their routine con jobs, they use her to help them create their own haunting. What “Mallas, MA” suffers in is the story, which often feels hasty while much of the character actions are inexplicable and baffling. Did the hunters know that this girl was a ghost? Did they eventually realize it? If they’re con artists wouldn’t finding a ghost help solidify their credibility? Did they honestly believe she was just a young girl in spite of her ability to go from place to place in seconds flat?
 
Were they just con men or ghost hunters who conned people? The film itself it quite decent but falls apart when you begin to ask questions about character motivations and actions involving the plot. This all culminates in to an ending that never really spoke to me nor did it explain much at all. If they knew this girl was a ghost why weren’t they scared? And why did con man Brian suddenly have a change of heart deciding to out himself as a con man on live TV? Did this ghost reveal something about herself that made him consider other people’s feelings? Why did she oblige them in taking pictures initially? “Mallas, MA” has potential to be an excellent short film, but it tends to really show the chinks in its armor in regards to much of what occurs once we reach the middle of the movie.
 
That said, “Mallas, MA” has a very unique and excellent visual style that I appreciated. I hope to see more from director Meehan in the future.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Gorilla Film Magazine Reviews MALLAS, MA

http://gorillafilmmagazine.com/2013/07/23/mallas-ma/

Mallas, MA

By Robert Gould – July 23, 2013

“They don’t have to be good…” paranormal investigator Maria reassures partner-in-crime Brian Higgins “Just spooky”.

She’s referring to the ‘data’ the two must acquire while investigating an alleged scene of supernatural activity, but she could just as easily be laying down the gauntlet for director Sean Meehan. With less than eight minutes to impress, can Mallas, MA hope to succeed on both counts? Well, when dealing with the type of light, family-friendly horror that Meehan has strived for with this winsome effort, the two traits are rarely mutually exclusive. Meehan’s flair for crafting subtly tense sequences pays homage to his chosen genre, while solid performances and a well-intentioned script add a credible slant.

A sweeping aerial shot of suburbia signals the director’s Poltergeist-aping aesthetic. Maria and Brian are revealed to be cynical con-artists from almost the very beginning, but Meehan doesn’t judge, instead allowing his characters to breathe and soak up the gently unnerving atmosphere of their customer’s supposedly haunted basement. There they bicker, gather whatever objects they believe can be palmed off as definitive proof of the afterlife, and encounter Sydney, a mute but playful young girl. As she takes part in the duo’s carefully staged photos, Sydney exhibits a striking talent, drawing an unexpected crisis of faith from one of her observers.

The score alternates between wary and fantastical, but rarely imposes, supporting the film’s airy tone. DoP Rick Macomber isn’t adverse to bright, primary colours, with even the dingy, basement-set scenes imbued with a refreshing, cerulean hue. Meehan also scores points for setting much of the action in broad daylight, all while maintaining the film’s mysterious allure. Amusing minor players, including a sidelined myth-debunker sporting a bejeweled beehive, add further dimensions to this colourful world.

The fact that Mallas, MA was put together in only forty-eight hours (as part of the Boston 48 Hour Film Project) is echoed by Maria and Brian’s own deadline: an evening talk show appearance where their discoveries must be shared. It’s a neat example of being self-referential without being self-indulgent, as a genuinely surprising outcome sees Meehan begin to forge his own path as a director, not just merely honouring those who went before.

Reaction to MALLAS, MA

I have to say that the reaction to MALLAS, MA, so far, has been outstanding. People really dig the film and I couldn't be more pleased. Mark Bell's reaction from Film Threat yesterday was especially right on the money, in my opinion.

Everyone involved with the film has a lot to be proud of.



MOVING MOUNTAINS This Saturday

Last night, I started work on lines for Saturday's MOVING MOUNTAINS shoot. Got 4 pages down. 4 more to go.

My call is 9:30 on Saturday morning, but I'll be catching an early train, as I will be heading to Dover, NJ, which is 90 minutes out of the city.

The scene itself should be pretty easy. Dialogue heavy, yes, but if I get the lines down as comfortably as I can, than a large portion of my job is already done.

Looking forward to this shoot. It should be a blast.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Film Threat Reviews MALLAS, MA

http://www.filmthreat.com/reviews/69409/

MALLAS, MA

3 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 8 minutes
Click to Expand Credits:
Brian (Timothy J. Cox) and Maria (Maria Natapov) are paranormal investigators, brought in to check out reports of a haunting at Eddie’s (Eddie Nason) house. A couple of dubious means, and intentions, Brian and Maria don’t expect to find much of anything, though it’d be better for their wallet if they did. Which is why, when they are surprised by the arrival of a young girl (Uatchet Jin Juch and Nekhebet Kum Juch) in the basement, they convince her to pose for a series of “evidence” photos.

Sean Meehan’s short film, Mallas, MA, is a pleasant paranormal fairy tale, reminiscent in tone to the gentler moments of Beetlejuice. Its story is playful and straightforward, tackling the world of paranormal investigations with an eye that is both cynical and endearing at the same time, giving emotional depth that might otherwise not exist had the film been executed in a more bombastic fashion. This ghost story has heart.

One of the most remarkable aspects of this short is that it was made as part of the 2013 Boston 48 Hour Film Project, meaning it was conceived, filmed and finished within 48 hours. Which is spectacular, because this looks like a film that took much more time and effort to create than simply a two day span. That said, however, it also explains some aspects where the film stumbles.

For one, the narrative itself could’ve used a little more massaging. When certain elements are revealed in the film’s final act, they feel like forced character development. My guess is that is precisely what is going on, to keep within the rules, or within the resources, of the 48 hour competition. The result is that, by my interpretation of the short, what should’ve been a more powerful moment comes off more as puzzling than otherwise. It makes sense when you really think about it, and the emotional depth I mentioned earlier exists, but its impact is diluted.

Again, though, for a film made within 48 hours, Mallas, MA raises the bar as far as what type of quality we should be expecting from these competitions, because it’s a quality short whether you know about its production or not. Beyond the fact that the film looks gorgeous, and the acting is solid, it also has a ridiculously impressive moving camera shot in the opening, that rises up from a shot of our paranormal investigators’ car to reveal the entire town. I’m not easily impressed, but how did they get that shot? Crane? Digital chicanery? Model of a town? Regardless, it’s just one example of how the short succeeds above and beyond the limitations of its production.


This film was submitted for review through our Submission for Review system. If you have a film you’d like us to see, and we aren’t already looking into it on our own, you too can utilize this service.

Posted on July 22, 2013 in Reviews by

Read more: http://www.filmthreat.com/reviews/69409/#ixzz2Zo9lVh1a

Film Threat Reviews WE JUST WANT TO PLAY

http://www.filmthreat.com/reviews/69408/

WE JUST WANT TO PLAY

2 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 17 minutes
Click to Expand Credits:
The Ruckland University Rugby Team is being dissolved, and team captain Glen (Lars Lee) is out to save it. Sure, his team parties hard and has a questionable reputation around campus, but is that enough to get the team eliminated by evil Athletic Director Dickerson (Timothy J. Cox)? With time running out before the hearing on the team’s fate, Glen tries to cope with his insane roommate Ray (Trevor Williams), recover from his recent break-up with girlfriend Whitney (Alexandra Bartley) and figure out what to do to make sure that Ruckland U’s rugby team can live to scrum another day.

We Just Want To Play shows that the filmmakers involved know how to craft an idea along the same narrative structure of an Animal House or PCU (with some added athletic underdog bits of Meatballs or Dodgeball thrown in for good measure), but can’t execute it in a way that makes their film a worthy imitation. The pieces are all there: rowdy, rebellious students looked down on by their stuffy and stuck-up rivals, a collegiate establishment out to punish these rebellious cads and an underdog attempt at redemption in the face of unfair persecution. It has obviously worked in many other films, enough so that the formula is as obvious as it is, so why doesn’t it work here?

Mainly because you just don’t care about anyone on screen. It is so formulaic, you’re only really paying attention to Glen, for example, because he’s the one narrating. The dramatic stakes are low (it’s not like anyone is getting expelled, their rugby team is just being dissolved), the overall logic is strained and the attempts at laughs are weak at best. The bones for a crazy college underdog comedy full of hilarious hijinks are there, but the meat is lacking proper flavor.

All that said, the acting is fine, even though the characters aren’t given much character to work with. It’s a student film, out of Quinnipiac University, and while it looks and sounds like its resources were limited, there actually aren’t many technical hiccups. The audio mix, including the work with the soundtrack, is far better than average for similar fare. This one falls apart almost entirely on narrative, the rest of the components are actually pretty competent.

The best thing that can be said for We Just Want To Play is that at least it’s short (though even under twenty minutes, it still feels long). While the filmmakers didn’t achieve a positive result with the film, the knowledge of the narrative formula and the structure to make a film like this shows that at least there was more going on here than turning a camera on and acting silly. The technical proficiency in other areas of production also backs that sentiment up. It didn’t work for me overall, but I can understand what was being attempted, and filmmaking skills are present, if needing more time and experience.

This film was submitted for review through our Submission for Review system. If you have a film you’d like us to see, and we aren’t already looking into it on our own, you too can utilize this service.

Posted on July 22, 2013 in Reviews by

Read more: http://www.filmthreat.com/reviews/69408/#ixzz2Zo9K1XyX

CHOOSING SIDES Shoot

Yesterday's shoot was a lot of fun. Fast paced, professional and very smooth overall. That's the way you do it and director Lee Loechler and screenwriter Yael Green are to be commended for running a tight ship. Both Lee and Yael were a delight to work with, as were actress Rachel Lynn Jackson and actor Max Plush.

Lee hopes to edit this fast. This project is the first in what he and Yael hope to a be start of several projects, so it's nice to be involved in the early stages of the development of a new company.

If you wish to see samples of Lee's impressive work, please visit his website: http://leeloechler.com/

Thanks to Lee, Yael, Rachel and Max for the pleasure of the time spent working on this project.



Blog Review of MALLAS, MA

http://bobafett1138.blogspot.com/2013/07/mallas-ma-2013-directed-by-sean-meehan.html

Mallas, MA (2013) Directed by Sean Meehan

After having seen many bad horror flicks lately, it was kind of refreshing and good to see a genre movie that wasn't taking itself seriously for a change!

This is a pretty amusing short and granted that it's not really a full blown horror movie but it still plays around with many of the familiar genre ingredients and clichés. It foremost is still a comedy though and I'm happy it is! It makes the movie a pleasant one to watch and the story a good- and more engaging one to follow.

It also helps a lot that the short has some good and likable characters in it. Even though you of course know nothing about them, you still feel that you get what the characters are all about, in terms of personalities and dynamics. They are all portrayed pretty well, by this short its actors.

It's also definitely a good looking short. Despite the fact that it was shot and put together in 48 hours, it looks and feels like a very professional production, that took much longer to make. It has some good cinematography, good editing, a nice little musical score and it uses some good and effective settings.

Reason why the short got done in 48 hours is because it was part of a 48 hour film competition. It actually won the audience choice award and it's not hard to see why. This is a real crowed pleaser, with its fun tone, nimble storytelling, likable characters and overall professional look and feeling.

It's of course not a perfect short (maybe it's a bit too predictable and not all of the developments work out equally well) or one that's going to absolutely blow your mind but it simply is a very well done and perhaps even more importantly, a very amusing short to watch, that's definitely worth checking out!

7/10

Movie Quotes and More Review of MALLAS, MA

http://www.moviequotesandmore.com/mallas-ma-2013-movie-review.html

Mallas, MA (2013) Movie Review

by Parissa Janaraghi



Imaginative and Humorous


Mallas, MA is an inventive short film directed by Sean Meehan with a production value that makes it hard to believe that it was made in 48 hours. Starring Timothy J. Cox as Brian and Maria Natapov as Maria, the story is a humorous and engaging eight-minute short about a superstitious New England small town that hire two paranormal investigators, who in reality are con artists, to determine if the town really is haunted. The film opens impressively, especially with the aerial shot above the town, and introduces us immediately to the two likeable con artists, Brian and Maria. It draws us in as we follow the two crooks to a resident's house they are pretending to investigate after which they happen to come upon a mysterious young mute girl sitting in the corner of a dirty basement. The crooked pair then decide to use the girl and take pictures of her 'pretending' to be a ghost, they are so focused on their con that they don't see that the girl being able impossibly move and pose wherever they want her. The film then gives us a fun twist ending which was handled pleasingly.

Even though the ending is easily guessable, it doesn't detract from this short being an entertaining and comical film to watch. The two leads are strong and make their con artist characters likeable. The story was well thought out and executed with a good choice of location which is well shown off in the good use of cinematography, and the score was especially good as it set the tone of the film.

Overall, this is a fun imaginative engaging short that although has a predictable storyline does work as a comedy with a very professional looking production. I especially liked the little funny credit scene which was a nice little touch and ended it on a laugh.

7/10

Check out the film for yourself:












Friday, July 19, 2013

CHOOSING SIDES Cast

I've just learned that my wife, Ellen, in CHOOSING SIDES will be played by Rachel Lynn Jackson, who I worked with a few months back on the ServiceRunner.com spec commercial. Very nice and very professional. Here's her headshot



And her website: http://www.rachellynnjackson.com/

Mikey, my son in the film, will be played by Max Plush. Here's a photo of Max


Looking forward to working with both Rachel and Max.

CHOOSING SIDES On Sunday Morning

My call for Sunday is 10am and my travel isn't bad at all...to the Central Park West area, near the famous Dakota Building. Not bad at all.

I'm really looking forward to this.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sketch Comedy Project

Way back on December 12th, I shot a brief scene as Martin Scorcheesi (a parody of guess who?) in a comedy sketch about Gruce Stringcheese (another parody. Guess who?). It was an interview and I just riffed, trying to capture that manic Scorsese energy as much as possible.

I referenced the shoot in this original post from December. 12th: http://everymanactor.blogspot.com/2012/12/tonights-shoot.html

It was a lot of fun and the people I worked with were very nice. I dropped director James Benson and email yesterday to check the status of the project and the good news is that this particular sketch is coming together and should be finished by September.

I'll be real curious to see it, as I don't remember a thing I did the night we shot the interviews.

Lines, Lines, Lines

I worked on lines for CHOOSING SIDES last night and they came pretty easily. Now, I'm just drilling them over and over and over.

I'll start work on lines for MOVING MOUNTAINS at the start of next week.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cast In Short CHOOSING SIDES. Shoots This Sunday

I have just been cast in the comedic short CHOOSING SIDES for directors Lee Loechler and Yael Green.

Here's the synopsis: A dinner conversation goes sour when the topic turns to religion. Will 12-year-old Mikey choose to be Catholic like his father or Jewish like his mother?

I'll be playing the Dad, who has some really funny lines, so I couldn't resist.

The shoot is this coming Sunday, so I intend to get cracking on lines tonight.

Great Quote From Character Actor Stephen Tobolowsky

 
 

The very best character actors are made of equal parts discipline and madness, and the fact that our faces are more familiar than our names is not our curse, but our blessing. The character actor's goal, after all, is not to earn the adulation of the public; it is to give lives to a hundred nameless spirits who make us laugh or cry, who are both familiar and new, who show us that their journey is our journey, and who, like everyone in the audience, never get to kiss Renée Zellweger.

Cast In Web Series MOVING MOUNTAINS

Last night, I spoke with writer / director Kyle Schickner about the role of talent manager Lawrence Delan in MOVING MOUNTAINS last night and he offered me the role, which I'm very excited about. Kyle has written a marvelous script, filled with a lot of humor and heart.

MOVING MOUNTAINS is a 6 episode web series that will revolve around 14 year old, Sienna and how her life changes after a youtube video of her singing goes viral.

My shooting date is July 27th.

More details to come.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Up For A Dad Role In A Comedic Online Video

Just got off the phone with a casting person about a comedic online video for a ''nationally recognized brand'' that will be shooting in NJ at the end of the month. If cast, I'll be playing a goofy Dad.

Typecast again.

I'm in the running...now it's the waiting game.

Joe Ibrahim - Possible New Project

Last week, I meet with HEART SHAPED BOX director and fellow high school alum, Joe Ibrahim, to catch up and to discuss a new project. I won't spill anything as of yet, since it's in the very early stages, but it could be a lot of fun.

Stay tuned.

Another Article On Director Dan Kowalski and GREG'S GUARDIAN ANGEL

http://commack.patch.com/groups/arts-and-entertainment/p/commack-native-screening-movie-at-li-film-expo

Commack Native Screening Short Movie at LI Film Expo

Dan Kowalski's short comedy, “Greg’s Guardian Angel,” will shown Thursday.

Commack native Dan Kowalski, will show his latest short comedy film, “Greg’s Guardian Angel,” at the Long Island Film Expo Thursday at the Bellmore Movie Theater at 2:30 p.m.

In addition to being shown at the 2013 Long Island Film Expo, it has also been accepted into the 30th Annual Long Island Film Festival and the Diamond Film Festival. Kowalski’s film was also part of the Paterson Falls Film Festival. 

According to a press release, 'Greg's Guardian Angel' is a comedic short film that tells the story of how a man's life is forever changed by his guardian angel... because it gets ruined.

It was co-produced in 2012 by Phalanx Video Productions, of which Kowalski is the founder, owner and main director, and All Things Random Productions. The project was directed by Dan Kowalski and written by Dan Conrad. It stars Greg Vorob as Greg and Elmer Santos as his incompetent Guardian Angel.

Kowalski mainly produces commercials, but also directs short films, web series (Marty and Doug’s New Religion, Howdy Stranger Comedy, and the upcoming Power Time Show), and music videos.
He grew up in Commack, and is graduate of Commack High School’s Class of 2002. He currently lives in Jersey City with his wife and daughter.

For more information about the film, visit www.PhalanxVideoProductions.com, www.DanKowalski.com, and www.GregsGuardianAngel.com.

The Jersey Journal On Director Dan Kowalski and GREG'S GUARDIAN ANGEL

http://www.nj.com/jjournal-news/index.ssf/2013/07/jersey_city_filmmakers_new_com.html

Jersey City filmmaker's new comedy short set for Long Island Film Expo this week

By Paige Morris/The Jersey Journal on July 16, 2013

dan kowalski.JPGJersey City filmmaker Dan Kowalski's new comedy will screen at the Long Island Film Expo this Thursday.
 
Jersey City filmmaker Dan Kowalski’s new comedy will screen at the Long Island Film Expo this Thursday.
 
The family-friendly short “Greg’s Guardian Angel,” directed by Kowalski, was shot mostly in Hudson County, with scenes spanning West New York and Jersey City as well as Bergen County’s Midland Park.
 
The film stars Greg Vorob as “Greg,” a man whose life is uprooted by his incompetent guardian angel, played by Elmer Santos.
 
“Before I met them, Greg Vorob and (co-writer) Dan Conrad were putting together sketch comedy for the web,” Kowalski said. “This was one of the sketches they wrote and never produced.”
 
When Kowalski overheard the pair discussing the sketch, he instantly saw its production potential.
 
“Every single one of the actors is somebody I’ve worked with before,” he said, and some of the faces might be familiar to audiences as well.
 
Jack Moran, Jr. – who’s worked as an extra on “30 Rock” and “Boardwalk Empire” – plays Greg’s boss in the movie. Indie film veteran Timothy J. Cox also has a supporting role.
 
Kowalski said the filming was “a lot of fun” and believes working as a director in Jersey City gave him and his team some unique advantages.
 
“We’re right across the river from New York at a time when New York has surpassed even LA in terms of video production,” he said. “Lots of opportunities are here.”
 
Kowalski is currently working on commercial projects and web comedy series at his production company, Phalanx Video Productions. He is also writing a feature-length film.
 
“Greg’s Guardian Angel” makes its Long Island Film Expo debut Thursday at 2:30 p.m. at the Bellmore Movie Theater in Bellmore, N.Y. The film will then make its way to the Long Island Film Festival and the Diamond Film Festival.

MOVING MOUNTAINS Web Series

I was sent the script for the MOVING MOUNTAINS Web Series this morning. Looking forward to giving that a read.

Director Kyle Schickner will also be contacting me to discuss the role of Lawrence Delan, the fast talking, if not exactly trustworthy, talent agent/manager.

Audition for Web Series JAKE DOES STUFF

On July 20th, I will be auditioning for a guest role on the new web series JAKE DOES STUFF, from director Alex Caputo and the team of 221 Productions.

Here's the synopsis: After having his first auto-biography shot down, a writer decides to convert his passive life style into an active one by forcing himself into ridiculously unusual situations in order to become a published author.

I will be reading for the amusing role of Mr. Walsh, Jake's boss; a nervous guy who abuses anti-depressants in order to fire Jake without feeling guilty.

We'll see what happens.

Monday, July 15, 2013

CATFISH 3.0 / MOVING MOUNTAINS Web Series'

Last week, I submitted videos for two web series that being produced by the same company, FenceSitter Films. One was titled CATFISH 3.0 and the other was called MOVING MOUNTAINS. 

Both projects will be shooting in Morristown, NJ.

In CATFISH, I read for the role of a kind father, while in MOVING MOUNTAINS, I read for a manipulative talent agent.

I received word yesterday that director Kyle Schickner liked my take on the agent, so they may use me for the part, but I'm waiting for a call from Kyle, who wants to discuss the role with me.

The sides I read were fun, so it would be great to be a part of the project.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Rogue Cinema Review of MALLAS, MA


http://www.roguecinema.com/article3825.html
 
Film Reviews: Mallas, MA (2013) - By Cary Conley
Posted on Tuesday, July 02, 2013 @ 07:58:06 Mountain Daylight Time by Duane



Mallas, Massachusetts is a very superstitious New England hamlet. Many of the residents seem to think they have paranormal visitors in town. So in order to find out once and for all whether or not the town has some ghostly residents, the good people of Mallas hire a medium and two "paranormal investigators"--in reality con artists--to explore the area and determine if the town really is haunted.

The film opens with the two crooks, Brian and Maria, (Timothy J. Cox and Maria Natapov) knocking on one of the resident's doors and being directed to the basement, supposedly the site of several ghostly occurrences. The pair wander around aimlessly, cracking jokes and trying to devise a plan when Maria is startled to find a pretty, young girl sitting in the corner of the dank basement. She seems happy enough and is willing to answer questions with a nod of the head but seems quiet and very shy, preferring not to speak. Brian decides to really put one over on the town so he has Maria take pictures of the little girl peeking around corners and from behind various pieces of junk in the basement. The little girl never speaks but is game to have her picture taken, and seems to know where Brian wants her to pose even before he tells her. He'll have an idea, look up, and there the mute darling is, exactly where he wanted her to be. She even accompanies Brian and Maria to the local talk show where they plan to announce their "scientific findings".

But will Brian and Maria go through with their shenanigans, bilking the good townsfolk of Mallas from their hard-earned money? Will they be discovered before they can finish pulling the wool over the collective eyes of the entire town? And just who is this mysterious girl who doesn't seem to have an attachment to anyone in town? You must watch Mallas, MA in order to find the answers to these questions.

Filmed earlier this year, Mallas, MA is a gently humorous and ironic eight-minute short directed by Sean Meehan. There is a fun little Twilight Zone-like twist at the end, the perfect payoff for our two pranksters. The two leads are quite strong and do a fine job as they bumble around attempting to set the town of Mallas up for a hard fall. The cinematography is quite good; I especially enjoyed the title sequence as the camera sweeps over the gorgeous New England landscape filled with brightly-colored Cape Cod-style houses. Director of photography Rick Macomber is to be commended for this terrific shot as well as for the entirety of the film.

Mallas, MA is a fun little film that is very enjoyable. It should come as no surprise that the film won the Audience Choice Award at the 2013 Boston 48 Hour Film Project. The film is available for viewing at http://vimeo.com/68377568.



Tuesday, July 02, 2013 @ 07:58:06 Mountain Daylight Time Film Reviews |

Jared Mobarak Reviews MALLAS, MA

mallasma01

REVIEW: Mallas, MA [2013]

“Believe me, it’s worth it”
Created as part of the 48 Hour Film Project’s 2013 installment in Boston, Sean Meehan’s Mallas, MA had four stipulations: his team Fix It In Post had the genre of “Buddy Film” and were made to use a character named Brian or Bonnie Higgins, a net as a prop, and the line of dialogue above. From there the sky was the limit for Meehan and his cowriters Daniel Berube and Todd Mahoney, the idea of a superstitious town and the pair of con artists sifting through becoming the premise with which to build upon.

Starring Timothy J. Cox as Brian and Maria Natapov as Maria, the paranormal activity ruse at play is discovered early on while watching the former ensure his “ghost detector” made the appropriate noises to fool their gullible clientele and the latter on the phone with a television show requesting visual proof of their findings. An impressive crane shot above the town later—an impressive feat considering the project’s constraints of limited budget and time—brings them to Eddie’s (Eddie Nason) home for the duo’s latest reading.

But as they look around for something to pass as a sort of ectoplasmic remnant of the great beyond, a fantastic stroke of luck occurs in the appearance of a young girl more than willing to partake in a little make-believe. Directing her while Maria snaps images on her phone, Brian is tickled by their new friend’s enjoyment in posing wherever he asks her to go. So focused on the con, however, he doesn’t see the sheer impossibility of this girl’s movements going from his side to exactly where he needs her to be in the split second it takes for the camera to pan over.

Meehan and company have crafted a fun bit of comedy dealing with the human conscience and its ability to be so shortsighted in its corruption that it can’t discern when the lies have turned to truth. The supernatural aspect is beautifully orchestrated by the simplest of tricks—divulged via an image right before the credits—just as the main cast rises to the occasion with enough jovial cynicism to accept the change of heart that arrives at the end for Higgins. Think an eight-minute cousin to Terry Gilliam’s The Brothers Grimm set in present day for free.

I may need to watch it again to find out exactly where the net comes into play—unless of course it’s simply the device Cox’s Higgins uses to “ensnare” the readings of his fictitious apparitions—and the ultimate admittance of truth may arrive more abruptly than desired, but Mallas, MA results in an inventive short with the kind of production value that makes it hard to believe only two days were needed to go from start to finish. Unsurprisingly, the film went on to win the Audience Choice Award for its grouping—a well-deserved accolade.

Mallas, MA 7/10 | ★ ★ ★

Watch it for yourself on Vimeo.

Saturday, July 06, 2013

LINDA LETHORN AND THE MUSIC BOX News

Meg Skaff's film LINDA LETHORN AND THE MUSIC BOX was a part of the Portland Oregon Women's Film Festival. It was screened in the festival back on March 8th.

http://powfest.com/2013-2/linda-lethorn-the-musicbox/

Congrats to Meg and to everyone involved in the film.

Friday, July 05, 2013

Brian Dennehy as Willy Loman in DEATH OF A SALESMAN

One of the best live performances that I have ever seen...the amazing Brian Dennehy in his award winning turn as Willy Loman in DEATH OF A SALESMAN.

GREG'S GUARDIAN ANGEL News

Visit the link below for a story on GREG'S GUARDIAN ANGEL

http://www.jerseycityindependent.com/2013/06/25/comedic-short-about-incompetent-guardian-angel-heading-to-film-fest/

PAUL IN HIS CAR is now online!

Here's PAUL IN HIS CAR, from All Things Random

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Rogue Cinema Review of DARK ROMANCE




Film Reviews: Dark Romance (2013) - By Cary Conley
Posted on Tuesday, July 02, 2013 @ 07:59:55 Mountain Daylight Time by Duan


Tim Cooper (Timothy J. Cox) is a veteran advertising executive with a kind heart. He works with Cam (Cameron Rankin) who is a young, up-and-coming ad exec with a bit of a snobby attitude. Tim and Cam share a sweet, innocent secretary named Tiffany (Tiffany Browne-Tavarez) who has an obvious crush on Tim. Soon Tim begins to receive cards and flowers from a secret admirer. As Tim and Cam puzzle over exactly who this secret admirer may be, the gifts take a dark turn with a mysterious package sent to Tim that contains a finger and a snippet of prose from Shakespeare. Tim is obviously upset by the turn of events but Cam tells him to forget about it and move on. But while Cam is able to brush off this weird event and leave the office, Tim stays late to ponder this latest "gift" and try to pull himself together. He asks Tiffany to brew some fresh coffee before she leaves the office but she spikes the drink with a drug so she can unveil her master plan after hours at the office.

According to IMDb, this is writer/director Matthew Mohler's first filmmaking foray, done for $500 for the 48 Hour Film Project. Mohler seems to be a proficient film director, even including some unique and interesting film angles and shots. One particular example is a shot from inside the bottom of a manila envelope supposedly containing the severed appendage. While the shot isn't difficult--just remove the bottom of a manila envelope and attach it to the camera, then have the actors look down towards the camera--it is a unique shot that focuses the attention on the character's shocked expressions as they view the contents of the envelope. Another nice shot occurs when Tim is stressing over the mysterious envelope. Mohler begins the shot off-kilter and slowly tilts the camera from one side to the other. The net effect is similar to a boat rolling in the ocean and really helps the viewer to understand Tim's feelings of anxiousness. The actors are all solid as well, with veteran Timothy J. Cox leading the way as the older man with an unwanted admirer.

 
The major flaw in this 8-minute short is in the writing (co-written by Ross Mahler). From the opening scene it is clear that Tiffany is head-over-heels in love with Tim, so the identity of the secret admirer is never really hidden from us, removing any potential mystery from this plot point. In fact, it's so obvious that Tiffany is the admirer it was hard for me to identify with Tim and Cam as they attempted to solve the mystery of the secret admirer. I was also disappointed in Cam's reaction to the discovery of the severed digit contained within the envelope. While Tim was genuinely shocked, Cam's reaction was quite blasé, a very unrealistic reaction in my opinion. At this point any reasonable person would contact the police, but neither of the men do so; Tim just sits in anguish at his desk while Cam insists he should just ignore the finger.

Aside from a couple of plot inconsistencies I enjoyed the film, and I particularly enjoyed the hilarious and inspired closing line by Cam. It's tongue-in-cheek and decidedly black humor, but it's a classic line and the film is worth watching simply for this final remark.

Dark Romance has just been released online. For more information about the film, the IMDb site is http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2986682 and to view the film go to http://vimeo.com/67556332.