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He’s the man behind the 2005 movie “The Mangler: Reborn”, based on King’s novell The Mangler.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Matt Cunningham: Matt Cunningham, writer/director. I have been writing for quite some time. My first film Decampitated was a comedy-horror film that just got turned into comic book form through Devil’s Due comics in a Troma Graphic novel. I am working on several new projects for television and feature film – mostly family and comedy.

SKSM: How come you picked The Mangler to develop into another sequel? What is it in the story that you like so much?

Matt Cunningham: The film actually picked us – ha ha. I was working with the Executive Producer at the time and he came to me and asked if we would be interested in writing/directing the sequel that he bought the rights to. So of course, when an opportunity is put out there like that – you have to take it. I really like the idea of a machine having a life of it’s own. Something inanimate that could actually come to life and go after you. That’s pretty scary. Could you imagine if your toaster just attacked you while making toast. Takes breakfast to another level.

SKSM: When did you make The Mangler; Reborn? Can you tell me a little about the production? How much did it cost? How long did it take to film it?

Matt Cunningham: The film was shot in a seedy area of Los Angeles in 2005. The film was made for the price of two brand new BMW’s! and we shot the film in a scary ten days. Yes, that is not a typo. Ten days.

SKSM: You wrote and directed The Mangler Reborn with Erik Gardner, why two directors?

Matt Cunningham: Erik and I were working as a team at the time trying to set up a few other projects. This one just hit and we went full steam ahead. It wasn’t really a creative choice to use both of us, it just worked out that way.

SKSM: Do you have any plans for making more movies based on Stephen King’s stories? If you could pick – at least – one story to shoot, which one would it be and why?

Matt Cunningham: Right now, I don’t have any plans to do more King movies. Honestly one of my favorite books by Mr. King is his book on writing. It is a fantastic book! I love it. However, if I could make a movie around him, I would love to do the story of a young Stephen King as a kid and how his world around him changed him. As if he saw a lot of these scary visions growing up and it sculpted him into who he is today. Like some sort of Roald Dahl story with Stephen King as the protaganist.

SKSM: Are there things cut out of the movie that you miss now?

Matt Cunningham: Ha ha, I wish there was footage on the cutting room floor! That would of been great. What you see in the film is what we shot. We were on such a tight schedule that we didn’t have time to shoot extraneous material – although we had a couple endings in mind. We also had a few scenes that would of been shot different and more stylistic. Time is not a filmakers friend in low budget.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when you made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Matt Cunningham: Hadley’s house in the film is a notorious adult film house in LA. A lot of adult films get shot there and we had many visits from the police thinking that we were shooting adult films. But when they found out it was a horror film they left us alone. We heard that neighbors would see naked people out on the lawn and other crazy stories like that. The owner of the house, well, I could blog for days on that guy.

SKSM: What do you think about of the first and second movies of The Mangler?

Matt Cunningham: I remember seeing the first one in the theater and thinking it was fun, but not really scary. The second one – hmmm… not a big fan.

SKSM: Why can we only viewing The Mangler Reborn on DVD and not at the theatre?

Matt Cunningham: The deal was for the film to be a DVD release through Lions Gate. There was never a thought of it going theatrical.

SKSM: Did you have any personal contact with King during the making of the movie? Has he seen it (and if so, what did he think about it)?

Matt Cunningham: Unfortunately, we did not get to speak to King about the film. And I am not sure if he has seen it. It would be intersting to see what he thinks. We took his story and added a little twist to it – trying to stay true to his style of creepiness and the idea of losing yourself (or Hadley losing himself in this case).

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Matt Cunningham: I appreciate the opportunity to speak about the film and the fact that it is being recognized on your site. That means a lot. Thanks to everyone for reading. Thanks Bernd, for everything. (imdb.com)

 


He played in Natalie Mooallem’s Dollar Baby All That You Love as Alfie Zimmer.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Brad Holbrook: I’m a New York City actor/journalist (not a common combination!). I’ve spent most of my adult life as a TV news anchorman, here in NYC and in several other cities around the US. Currently I anchor a weekly half hour program for BusinessWeek, a show that focuses on consumer issues like investing, spending, and earning money. But I’ve spent much of the last four years getting back to an acting career that I put on hold shortly after graduation from college. In addition to “All That You Love“, I’ve appeared in Jonathan Demme’s remake of “The Manchurian Candidate” with Denzel Washington, Leib Shriver and Meryl Streep, as well as several network television dramas. I’ve done lots of theater, too. New York’s theater life is vibrant, to say the least. My latest production is a play written by former Czech Republic president Vaclav Havel in 1968. It’s a French farce kind of thing, lots of mayhem, doors opening and closing, etc. We did the play in November 2006 for the NYC Havel Festival, in which all of his plays were performed over a six week period. He came to one of our performances, and we all got to meet him. A big thrill! We were invited to re-stage the play in Baltimore, Maryland to open the season for The Theatre Project there in October 2007. It’s a demanding play. My character only leaves the stage for an instant at a time, and immediately returns. Visit http://web.mac.com/bradholbrook for more about what I’m up to!

SKSM: How did you become involved in All That You Love?

Brad Holbrook: I was invited to audition.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Brad Holbrook: –

SKSM: You worked with Natalie Mooallem on this film, how was that?

Brad Holbrook: Natalie is a force of nature. She is extremely creative and enthusiastic. And a sweetheart. I’m a tennis fanatic, and so is Natalie! We’ve corresponded about the various tournaments going on around the world.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Brad Holbrook: Movie shoots are always an exercise in crisis management. For one scene we had “borrowed” a deli in a New Jersey town to use as a set. After we shot the scene from one angle, the deli owner decided he didn’t want us there any longer. He had started to notice that his customers were having difficulty buying stuff, and he didn’t want to lose any more business. The producers and Natalie pleaded with the man for a while. We only needed to shoot for a few minutes more, but we got kicked out anyway. So we ended up borrowing another deli to shoot the rest of the scene from the angle of the cashier’s perspective. So what we ended up with is a scene between Alfie and the cashier shot in two entirely different locations! I don’t think you can tell in the film, although once you know what happened you might be able to spot a small inconsistency or two.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Brad Holbrook: I’ve seen Natalie and a few of the crew at screenings. She wants to enter the film in festivals and so forth, so I look forward to possible reunions.

SKSM: What did you do after All That You Love?

Brad Holbrook: I’ve done some theatre, including that Havel play. I’ve also shot a bunch of videos for websites. That is a booming market for actors! The Onion News Network is an off-shoot of The Onion newspaper, a parody of the day’s events, and is hilarious. I play a network morning show host alongside a drop dead gorgeous co-host (Tracy Toth), and neither of us (our characters that is!) have a clue about how brutally cruel we are being to our guests. I think it’s very funny. These segments will be added to the Onion’s website soon, and then through the Fall of 2007.

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Brad Holbrook: I have to admit that Carrie scared the bejeezus out of me, the film with Sissy Spacek. I loved that. I’ve only read a few of his novels, but I’ve seen many of his films. My son is a big fan.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Brad Holbrook: Thanks for the interest! I hope you get to see Natalie’s adaptation of All That You Love, and that you enjoy watching it as much as we did making it. (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0390023/)

She played in Nick Wauters‘ Dollar Baby Rainy Season as Laura Stanton.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Leigh Rose: I am 70 years old. I was born in Pidgeon Roost Holler, West Virginia. My father was a coal miner who went blind from the carbide in the mine-lamps and was sent to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland by the John L. Lewis Mine Worker’s Union for surgery. My family then moved to New Castle, Delaware and my mother got work as a parachute maker for the World War 11 , war effort. I was a homemaker for 33 years, I was married to a psychiatrist/lawyer who died in an airplane crash in 1992. I was a stay-at-home-mom and raised three daughters. In 1994 I decided to pursue my lifelong hidden desire to be an actor. I do a lot of commercials, TV, feature films, and stage plays. I’m happy to say my income is in the 6 figure range. I do volunteer work in my spare time.

SKSM: How did you become involved in Rainy Season?

Leigh Rose: My agent sent me on the audition for Rainy Season.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Leigh Rose: Although I had to sudition, I felt that the part had been written for me.

SKSM: You worked with Nick Wauters on this film, how was that?

Leigh Rose: Working with Nick was a breeze. He allowed the actors a lot of freedom. He is an actor’s dream director.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Leigh Rose: We filmed Rainy Season in a very remote location. If you know Los Angeles, you’ll wonder about that. I was miles from any inhabited areas. I think it was originally the old Columbia Ranch. And it was really eerie. Of course the whole frog think was hysterical. They used some live trained frogs and computer generated the rest. Yes, we laughed a lot.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Leigh Rose: Two of the leads, the husband & wife are from Canada and I’ve spoken on the phone to them. I got an e-mail from Nic just a few weeks ago. He is preparing to shoot a new movie.

SKSM: What did you do after Rainy Season?

Leigh Rose: My latest work has been on the tv shows, Monk, Entourage & ER. I’ve made 15 movies, shorts, etc. and I presently have a Coke commercial and a Verizon running. And I’ve done three stage shows. (imdb.com)

SKSM: If you lived in a town like Willow, and you knew about the toads, would you stay?

Leigh Rose: Yes, I would stay in Willow if I knew about the frogs. I would build a house that could withstand the onslaught. And when I eventually “croak” no one would probably notice with all the croaking frogs. LOL

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Leigh Rose: I have been a fan of Stephen Kings for 25 years. And I love everything he’s ever done, except of course getting hit by that handicapped man in the van. That accident was so Stephen King. I mean like the guy who hit him eventually suicided. I tear up whenever I think of the pain he suffered from this negligent driver.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Leigh Rose: Thank you for giving me the opportunity to express myself.

She played in Shawn Lealos‘ Dollar Baby I Know What You Need as Elizabeth.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Megan Harwick: I’m an actress I’ve been acting for years and years. Also know a little bit behind the camera as I graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a film degree and currently I work for a production company that produces mostly documentaries.

SKSM: How did you become involved in I Know What You Need?

Megan Harwick: Think I just saw the posting in some random place on the internet and showed up at the audition. It was something to do during the summer time. There really aren’t many auditions to go to in Oklahoma and I rarely go to any. This particular audition was in Norman, where I was going to college and it all fit in with my schedule.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Megan Harwick: I auditioned.

SKSM: You worked with Shawn Lealos on this film, how was that?

Megan Harwick: Shawn was really nice and seemed very enthusiastic about the whole thing.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Megan Harwick: I hated the woods scene there were too many bugs and it was itchy and ucky.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Megan Harwick: No I really don’t. I haven’t even seen the finished project I think Shawn works on several of these things.

SKSM: What did you do after I Know What You Need?

Megan Harwick: I appeared in several other commercials for Oklahoma. I decided to stop doing Independent films here that don’t pay or pay that much because I don’t appreciate the way I’ve been treated at these things. It sucks when I have to bring my boyfriend because the guys on the crew are making sexual remarks and dis-respecting me…Here it just seems like it is mostly kids with cameras that think they are big shots and they are quasi Gods that deserve to be worshipped…for me I just want to act I need an outlet because I’m crazy but also I am a very nice girl and deserve to be treated better than that….I’ve just been doing anything that pays because I know I will be treated like an adult and mostly a lady if they are paying…also I’ve been vacationing, painting, and ballroom dancing. I might be leaving to LA next week as I was given a temporary job offer with a production company out there.

SKSM: Voodoo is an important part of the story. Do you believe in it, or did you have personal experience with voodoo?

Megan Harwick: Hmm..If I did believe in voodoo I’m sure it would be real. There is so much about this world we don’t know…and I believe we can create things into existence after all the human mind is not a completely discovered thing.

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Megan Harwick: Oh wow King is a genius I loved loved shawshank redemption, stand by me, MISERY was so great too. I don’t know him or very well of him but can imagine it could be horrifying to be a horror genius as he is…Torture to dream his dreams or see the world the way he does. And so in a way if the way I imagine him is true…I feel sorry for him but am thankful for him and the fact he shares his vivid imagination–his mind with us…I’m grateful to him, my world is filled with make-believe fairies and haha princes you know? Stephen King presents a completely different world in comparison to the way I see it and he has helped me grow.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Megan Harwick: Ciao and I wish everyone the best of luck!

She played in Dave Brock‘s Dollar Baby The Road Virus Heads North as Judy Michaud.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Sylvia Hutson: My name is Sylvia D. Hutson, I originate from Ireland and came to America in
1985, I have lived in Germany, England, Puerto Rico and love to travel. I have two kids, Jon who is 26 and Jessica who is 18. I am now running a talent agency in Virginia where I live, and absolutely love it. I have a website www.hutsontalentagency.com. Check it out.

SKSM: How did you become involved in The Road Virus Heads North?

Sylvia Hutson: There is a showbusiness magazine called Backstage and I read about the audition in there.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Sylvia Hutson: The audition was in New York, so I sent in my headshot and resume and the producer called me on the Tuesday and asked if I could be in New York on the Friday for the audition. I had never been to New York, but said sure. I got a friend of mine to go with me and we made it a road trip. So off we went and I did the audition on the Friday and they called me that evening and asked if I could do a callback. Then on the Sunday I came back to Virginia and about three weeks later they called me and said I had the part.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Sylvia Hutson: The entire process was Special. When I flew to Athens where we shot the movie, the first evening was probably the funniest, they dyed my hair black and put highlights in it and we spilled some on the floor at the hotel, so we had to quickly try to get the dye off the carpet. Then they put long red fake nails on me and had me try on the costumes, which were loud colors, big funky jewelry and very funny.

SKSM: You worked with Dave Brock on this film, how was that?

Sylvia Hutson: Dave Brock was an amazing director, he knew exactly what he wanted, gave wonderful directions and treated the entire cast with so much respect, I would work with him again in a heart beat.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Sylvia Hutson: Yes I still hear from Dave now and again and Vicente who was the producer.

SKSM: What did you do after The Road Virus Heads North?

Sylvia Hutson: I came home to Virginia and continued on the acting path. One of the local television stations did a special interview with me about my experience.

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Sylvia Hutson: Yes I have always been a huge fan of Stephen King I have all his books and when there is a movie on of his I either buy it or tape it. That is the reason I replied to the audition notice because it was Stephen King.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Sylvia Hutson: If you are in the movie business keep working hard, strive for the best, never ever give up your dreams, if you put your mind and soul to what you dream off, it can be achieved. Live Well, Laugh Much, Love Often.

And lastly my motto which I live by from Robert Hughes is;
The Greater the Artist,
The Greater the Doubt
Perfect confidence is granted to the
less talented as a consolation prize

Thank you
Sincerely
Sylvia D. Hutson

 

He played in Brian Berkowitz’s Dollar Baby Sorry, Right Number as Bill.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Darrin Stevens: Well, I started my acting career in the ealy 90’s down in Miami, FL. doing theatre, Shakespeare fesivals, performance art projects, and short films for University of Miami film department. Currently I live in Wilmington, NC (also known
as Hollywood East or Wilmywood) where I work as a decorative concrete installer. I am also the Technical Director for a theatre company called Big Dawg Productions and I audition as much as possible for film and television. As well I do some stand-up comedy from time to time and most recently just finished filming the first season of a new police drama podcast called Port City PD (www.portcitypd.com) in which I play Detective Murphy.

SKSM: How did you become involved in Sorry, Right Number?

Darrin Stevens: I had to audition like everyone else. I had auditioned for AMVF productions on other projects but had
not landed anything with them until this. I read for the lead and one other male supporting role and wound up with the lead role.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Darrin Stevens: Well, if it was written for me I certainly didn’t know anything about.

SKSM: You worked with Brian Berkowitz on this film, how was that?

Darrin Stevens: Working with Brian was somewhat of a welcomed challenge. All directors work differently and at their own pace so the more directors you work with the more rounded and versatile you become as an actor. Brian allowed me to play Bill as I saw fit and then through rehersing would give notes and direction on how he saw it should be played. But he gave me plenty of breathing room and
was easy to get along with.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Darrin Stevens: Nothing out of the ordinary happened that I can recall. However, It was really great working with the crew at AMVF Productions. They are all good people and everyone got along great. Lots of laughs in between takes.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Darrin Stevens: Occasionally I run into Bo Buckley and Eric Holloway. In fact, about a year ago I got to help them film a trailer for a feature length film they are trying to get off the ground called ‘Savage’. I got to play a fireman that gets eaten by bigfoot. Matt Mosher was on that shoot and he also did my most recent headshots. I also run in to Barbara Weetman sometimes.

SKSM: What did you do after Sorry, Right Number?

Darrin Stevens: I worked a few times on NBC’s flop called ‘Surface’ and a few times on WB’s ‘One Tree Hill’. I’ve managed to
work on a few local commercials as well. My biggest highlight has been working on the podcast series Port City PD. Take the time to check out the show online. So far the show has had well over a million downloads and has been seen in over 80 countries. Its really well produced and no one on the internet is producing anything like it. It just got greenlighted for season 2 and I am excited to be
part of it.

SKSM: Have you seen the original Tales From The Darkside episode, and what do you think of it?

Darrin Stevens: Sorry to say I have not. I try not see things if I am going to be playing the same role as someone else. I once played the role of Petruchio in Taming of the Shrew for the Durango Shakespeare Festival and I had rented the movie version
with Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor and during performances I had picked up some of Burtons mannerism. I found it difficult to shake those things off and I really wanted role to be more of my own.

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Darrin Stevens: I have been a fan of Stephen King since I was a teenager. I have read just about all of his work and
am amazed that he is still able to put out strong, original stories.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Darrin Stevens: Thanks to all who have taken the time to listen to me babble on about myself. Thanks for watching Sorry Right Number and I hope you enjoyed it. And please check out Port City PD at www.portcitypd.com and finally thank you Bernd for asking me to interview, I’ve really enjoyed it.

 

He played in Nick Wauters‘ Dollar Baby Rainy Season as Henry Eden.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Oto Brezina: I came to the scene of film industry about ten years ago. My original dream to be somebody, like a film director or actor, was born in my native Czechoslovakia many years back. Very unfavorable atmosphere was not allowing me pursue my dreams there and I decided to leave and come to States. From the onset I needed to generate some income . Real estate and lending was very attractive at that time. But after almost twenty years of chasing properties, loans and drowning in paperwork I quit and turn away from all that. I was at my crossroad and the beginning of a new life. In the beginning I was working as extra in major motion pictures, that gradually grew in getting small speaking roles for independent film companies. I knew I am on the right track; the roles became more frequent and challenging. Here I am ten years later as a character actor and my time is fully taken by this glamorous enterprise.

SKSM: How did you become involved in Rainy Season?

Oto Brezina: I passed through regular routine to find an acting role. Responding to a casting call published in a industry periodicals for a role of Henry Eden and submitting my headshot and resume to the production company. It was for a short film based on Stephen Kings story. And I thought it would be cool to play Henry in suspense movie at this point of my career.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Oto Brezina: When I received a call to read for this character my heart beat jumped northbound. This was a supporting role I really wanted in my early stage of career. Henry is a prolific old timer and a proprietor of mercantile store owner in the hamlet of Willow. He carries the profound mystery of rainy days in this part of the world. From hundreds of applicants a handful of actors were selected for the role. After the audition I had a good feeling ; I my heart I felt I nailed it – as we say. Truly, few days later a call came , that I got the part. Independent movie makers very seldom -if at all- write and tailor suit the part for a particular actor. This is almost exclusivity of Hollywood studios.

SKSM: You worked with Nick Wauters on this film, how was that?

Oto Brezina: Working with Nick Wauters was as a breeze in the park. I have to bring up his easy going side in directing , detailed executing of the storyline with players. Following the scrip to the point we can call a precise scheduling of the scene. The actor does not feel restrained; he is allowed to express himself. I never experienced heightened tension among the cast or crew members during the shooting. They worked well in their respected functions.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Oto Brezina: I think the funniest part during my shoot was my costar. The four legged canine – my friendly pet in the scene suppose to be at my feet, while I was relaxing in the reclining chair at the store door. He is taking his routine nap in the sun drenched afternoon. Only few seconds later his attention was diverted to his master and trainer and he took off and left the set. Camera still rolling. Each time he just stood up and left the scene aiming to his bowl of water. No commands, or sweet talk would make him to stay put and this was very funny. From many takes the editor spliced few feet of having his presence noticeable in the scene.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Oto Brezina: After the initial show to cast and crew members and being in contact with Nick during the film festivals period, when Rainy Season was screened, our contact has faded away also because I was more involved in all phases of new projects.

SKSM: What did you do after Rainy Season?

Oto Brezina: Very simple answer: I worked! Frankly, with the completion of Rainy Season I got more immersed in acting as ever before. I was getting more auditions and have captured more interesting roles of different genre and character from which I can conclude, that I became a character actor. The last five years after Rainy Season are my most productive and I filed to my credit more than 120 completed projects in features, shorts, commercials , music videos and in a small way theatrical productions. imdb.com

SKSM: If you lived in a town like Willow, and you knew about the toads, would you stay?

Oto Brezina: Rainy Season was filmed on location in the Paramount Ranch, situated in the hills outside Los Angeles. This was the best place for the small hamlet of Willow in the middle of nowhere. Would have I lived there myself and knowing the secrecy surrounding this place, where the viciou , killing toads, instead of rain are dropping, I would have had run away by any means possible. I do not want to be shredded to pieces by these monsters !

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Oto Brezina: Yes, I am his fan. Why, he is the most productive and unpredictable in his novels writer of all times. Many times the following idea flashes my mind : if I could have similar brain, I could easily memorize lines, monologues, dialogues, improv of extreme volumes on any subject with only one reading! I have not read any of his major works for lack of time.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Oto Brezina: Without love and true dedication to this muse, I would not be at the spot, I am right now. I am anxiously waiting for the moment, I can show – off in a major, big budget motion picture hit of a Hollywood studio!

He played in Nicholas Mariani‘s Dollar Baby The Man In The Black Suit as Man in the Black Suit.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

John Viener: I am an actor and a writer, and sometimes, when I’m really motivated, I’m a director, too. I have been writing on the cartoon show “Family Guy” for several years and have been shooting short films in my spare time.

SKSM: How did you become involved for The Man in the Black Suit?

John Viener: Nick Mariani saw a film that I co-wrote and acted in that appeared in the Sundance Film Festival. He said that he had a Stephen King movie that he was working on and he’d be in touch.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

John Viener: He asked me to audition on tape, which I did and then he cast me.

SKSM: You worked with Nicholas Mariani on this film, how was that?

John Viener: Nick was very easy to work with. He’s got a good sense of humor and I was impressed that someone so young (he was just out of college) seemed to have a handle on the whole filmmaking process. He seemed very confident in what he wanted and had been thorough in terms of preparing for the shoot, so everything went smoothly. At least it looked that way to me.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

John Viener: There is a scene where I have to bite into a dead fish. We didn’t have a prop for that so a local guy on set caught some fish in the nearby stream. Although I love sushi, putting my mouth on a scaly, dead fish was a new experience for me. Especially as the takes went on. We go through it, but I wasn’t man enough to really take a big chunk out of it.

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

John Viener: I still talk to Nick occasionally. He gives me grief about not writing more feature films.

SKSM: What did you do after The Man in the Black Suit?

John Viener: I stayed in Los Angeles and started to focus less on acting and more on writing.

SKSM: A theme in the movie is the fear of death… what do you fear?

John Viener: I fear everything. I’m afraid of failure and I’m afraid of success. I’m afraid of dying alone and I’m afraid of being with one woman for the rest of my life. In general, I’m neurotic, so I try to focus it into my work. On the work side, my fear is that every job I do will be my last.

SKSM: Are you (or where you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

John Viener: I read “Misery”, “Night Shift”, “Firestarted” and “Pet Sematary” in grade school and high school. However, I stopped reading his work after I couldn’t finish “It.” So, I had not read “The Man In The Black Suit” until right before we shot. Most recently I read his non-fiction book on writing, which I enjoyed. He’s very good at what he does, but I feel like I’ve already given him a fair portion of my brain space, so I’ve been focusing on other authors.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

John Viener: I appreciate that you took the time to track me down for this interview. I hope that the people who have seen the movie enjoyed it. I’ve only seen it in my house, and though I clapped very loudly, it would have been nice to experience the movie in a theater. And to all my fans, I would like to say, “Wow, I didn’t know I had any fans. Thanks.”

Title: Nightmares & dreamscapes (2006)
Runtime: 45′
Director: Various
Cast: Robert Mammone, Kodi Simt-McPhee, Tom Berenger, William H. Macy, Richard Thomas…

 

He played in Mark Steensland’s (from a suggestion by Stephen King) Lovecraft’s Pillow as Martin Hale.

SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?

Shannon Solo: I’m an actor, an entertainer really. I host a radio show, do TV weather, write and perform music also.

SKSM: How did you become involved in Lovecraft’s Pillow?

Shannon Solo: I worked with Mark (Steensland) on ‘Sucker‘ and really enjoyed the experience so I happily agreed to do ‘Pillow’.

SKSM: Did you have to audition for the part or was it written directly for you?

Shannon Solo: The story was a suggestion by Stephen King and I was honored Mark thought of me for the part.

SKSM: You worked with Mark Steensland on this film, how was that?

Shannon Solo: As I mentioned, he’s awesome to work with, professional and precise.

SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when they made the movie that you would like to tell me about?

Shannon Solo: Mark on the roof hanging a pawn shop sign he made himself and working the dolly he also made that came together as a great shot!

SKSM: Do you still have any contact with the crew/cast from that time? If so with who?

Shannon Solo: In this area at some point you always run into people you’ve worked with before yes.

SKSM: What did you do after Lovecraft’s Pillow?

Shannon Solo: I have a couple projects lined up so far for this year.

SKSM: Do you think Stephen Kings idea was worked out as he intended?

Shannon Solo: I’m not going to pretend to go inside the mind of Mr. King haha.
It’s always difficult to transfer Stephen’s work to film, but I will say Mark did a wonderful job and I’m sure Stephen King would approve.

SKSM: Are you (or were you) a fan of Stephen King’s work?

Shannon Solo: Yes I’m a fan.

SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?

Shannon Solo: I appreciate you taking the time to promote the work of a dedicated
group of filmmakers!

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