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Over this past summer, my friend Wes filmed his senior thesis for SCAD.   As I have mentioned before, I met Wes during my first SCAD film “Sharp”.  He had asked during a project in between if I would like to be in his film.  Without hesitation, I said yes!  He told me it was a film noir-esque with some comedy.  I thought it was a great idea.  I asked him if I would be the private eye and he said no.  He wanted me as one of the thugs working for “the Boss”.  I didn’t really care what he wanted me to do, I was just happy to be a part of his film.

We went over the script and I had brought up a line that I thought fit in with my character and he loved it.  I asked him if we could put it in there and he had to check with the script writer.  He did, and she said it would be fine.  I can’t say the whole line, but I can tell you I mention that “there are two types of people in this world…..” it gets a little profane after that.  Anyway. filming took place over 4 days.

Even though I was not a lead, I was on set for most of the filming, as I love being on the set and watching the behind the scenes.  Wes’ parents catered the set and they did an amazing  job!  For the budget they were on, it was amazing.  At the same time I was an extra on CBGB and I said this then, and I’ll say it now- in direct proportion to the size of the 2 sets, Doug and Marianne did as awesome as major film caterer.  I couldn’t stop going on about how great the food they made was.  It was certainly one of, if not, the best catered sets I have been on yet.

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Most of the filming was done in a warehouse where it was over 100 degrees.  Thankfully, as on any set, there was plenty of water for everyone.  I have to say the crew Wes put together was nothing other than patient and professional.  Wes as a director, was very organized and knew what he wanted. He was very patient in working with the actors, especially in that heat.  It didn’t really bother me, I like the heat.  But then again, I wasn’t in a suit ;)  The chemistry between the actors was also excellent.  I hadn’t met anyone of the actors before this and again, I have maintained a friendship with some of them.

There was a joke one of the guys wanted me to play on the 1st Assistant Director.  We checked with Wes and he said it was cool.  I pretended to flip out and ask why everything was taking so long and could we please just finish up!  I got into it with Wes and then he couldn’t hold back laughing and I laughed and look over at the 1st AD.  He didn’t like it.  He told me sit down and get back to work. I got a little nervous about that and later I went to apologize and he was cool.  He was definitely a great sport about the whole thing.  He never saw it coming and the crew members who didn’t know about it, thought it was real.  The looks on some of their faces were awesome.

“Ace in the Hole”  is about a private detective who is kind of not all there.  He has trouble solving cases and when an old flame hires him to find her cat, he witnesses a crime.  He got on the case instantly and finds their hideout.  In doing so he solves the greatest case of his career.  Their is some humor, their is some drama and there is some fun.  As I mentioned earlier I was not a lead in this film, but I am very involved.  I got to do some voice over work for the trailer which is posted below and you can watch.  I also get to play on the soundtrack which we are recording this week.  I am very proud of this film and proud of my friend for pulling off this great film.  I am also grateful for the opportunity to have such a big part on this film.   If you live in the Savannah area, “Ace in the Hole”  will be premiering at the SCAD showcase on November 15th 2012, at the Trustees Theater on Broughton St.   See you there!

http://vimeo.com/52043103?action=share

This was the first SCAD film I was in.  I was working in Johnson Square, when a young man named Joseph, came up to me and said ‘You have the look I want for my film. Have you ever acted before?”  I said, “No, but I am willing to give it a try.”  So, we exchanged information and he called me a couple of days later.

I was pretty excited about doing this, I was playing a mobster  named Micheal, who slapped everyone around.  I really had no idea what to expect but I didn’t care.  It was the first time I was going to act in a film.  It was for Joseph’s Senior Thesis for SCAD.  It was here, that I discovered there is a lot of waiting around.  It took a lot of time to set up the shots and several takes from different angles.  (As a side note, with the SCAD films I have done, and most recently being on the set of CBGB, what these students do is every bit as impressive as the pros.  That is just my opinion.)  Of course, mistakes were made and there had to be retakes for that as well.  Being that this was my first time, I really paid attention to everything that was going on. I did what Joseph directed me to do, and everything seemed to go pretty good. I had a lot of questions, most had nothing to do with what I was doing, but about the process.  These students answered every one of them.  Egos are pretty low and I thought that was cool.  I can, however, see how professional actors can get an ego.  Even on these short films, “the talent” eats first at every meal, they are tended to, and not supposed to help with moving any equipment.  If one isn’t careful, one can find him/herself spoiled quickly.

We shot this film over the period of two weekends and it went very smooth. (Again, this is my opinion).   It is about a woman, played by Amanda Woods, who is the daughter of the Mob Boss and plays her boyfriend, played by Daniel Hamer,  against me to kill me.  Yes, I die on the film but I will not give the spoiler alert.  When it is posted on Vimeo, I will put a link to it here.  Since February, when we did this film, I have had the pleasure and the privilege to work with these students on several projects.  Joesph Raines directed this film and he and the crew really had their act together.  Wes Nelson was the camera man, Nikita Carpenter Jr. was the Director of Photography and Ben Muratet was the 1st Assistant Director.  We became fast friends during this production, which is why I get to work with them often. Melissa Martinez did the make up on my neck, and did an incredible job!  Most of these guys will be helping me with my first music video later on this summer.  A project I am really looking forward to.  All of them are very professional on set and stand up guys off set.  Of course, there are a lot of other people who were involved and props go to all of them. Soon they will be gone and off chasing their dreams and I wish them all the best.  It is my hope that we will stay in touch and keep up with the goings on and continue to inspire and be there for each other.

 

 

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