Juggling is pandemic in the film word: whether it’s survival jobs and auditions, casting and crewing up or scheduling shoots and appearances--there are always numerous balls in the air that need attention at any one time. Since the objects in the air are always changing, the more experienced and practiced you are, the better you’ll fare unscathed and without dropping a ball. Or a bowling pin. Or a flaming chainsaw.
My latest juggling act was the best kind you could want: I had several films that wanted me to shoot in the same month. But, since two of the roles were exceptionally meaty, so I would need to be on set for a good amount of time in both cases. Hence, it took a lot of communication to keep all parties aware of available shoot dates as they emerged. It was stressful, partly just because of the situation, but also because I wanted to take on the stress and keep it off the production folks. But it was also welcome stress, because the end goal—if achieved, meant I could play all three roles and make all three directors happy.
The first role was the easiest to work out, as it was the smallest. My scenes could all be shot in a single day. The film, on the other hand, is massive: writer/director BlakeFitzpatrick’s ABADDON is an epic sci-fi/action yarn about a bounty hunter and her convict lover freeing a society from the reign of a repressive theocratic police state. And it’s a nice cameo: the ubiquitous Charles Chudabala and I play prisoners who are saved by the heroes and then return the favor by aiding them in the revolution.
The next role in the mix is as the harried husband of Felissa Rose (of Sleepaway Camp) in Michael S. Rodriguez’ new horror flick THE DEADLY KIND. It’s a crazy twist on the cabin-in-the-woods genre: instead of teenagers, the leads are all adult…instead of cookie-cutter characters, the people are all multi-layered individuals…and instead of a single killer, there’s a slew of psychotic children. I play Marty—a whiny, but sympathetic man whose bristly relationship with his harpy wife becomes the least of his worries. And he adds a touch of comic relief to the proceedings as well.
Lastly, I’ll be playing a suspiciously odd caretaker named Harold in Adam Steigert’s new monster movie FANG. The film follows two punks who, after a robbery turned murder, hide in a distant relative's house only to find more horror, carnage…and ferociously inhuman creatures. The fun thing about Harold is you never know what he’s about. He’s creepy one minute, then conciliatory and solicitous the next. You never know what side he’s on, so you can never be sure about him. And considering the horrors that emerge all around, that unknown element only adds to the tension. The film also stars sexy scream queen Melantha Blackthorne, which makes the project even more exciting.
All of these films wanted me to shoot in June, so juggling began. Though it was a bit of a nail-biter in the beginning, things worked out when one shoot moved to July, solving everything. So I’m happy to report I’ll be shooting all three films—and survived the proverbial circus act without a single chainsaw scratch!
Barnum would be proud!
For more on ABADDON, click here.