Concert Review: Joe Bonamassa

Joe Bonamassa
Thursday, November 16th, 2017
State Theater, Ithaca, NY

Our score: 3 out of 5 stars

Guitar virtuoso and area native Joe Bonamassa brought his smoking brand of blues to the bustling college town of Ithaca, NY on November 16th performing to a near capacity crowd inside the historic 1,600 seat venue where JB and company let the music do the talking.

The guitarist and his band took the stage promptly at 8pm without the aid of an opening act as on this night it would be all JB. The band quickly got down to business opening up the set with “The Train” and quickly moving on to tracks such as “Blues Desperation” and “How Deep This River Runs” all of which earned the group large rounds of applause. As the set progressed further into the evening Bonamassa and company began to stretch their legs with covers of Albert King’s “I Get Evil” and “Angel of Mercy” and Led Zeppelins “Boogie With Stu” and “How Many More Times” which would close out the night’s performance. The front-man provided little to no banter between he and the crowd aside from band introductions which gave a nod to the stellar backing band which currently consists of drummer Anton Fig, bassist Michael Rhodes, keyboardist Reese Wynan’s and several other impressive players.

At times I did find the veteran blues player to be a bit cold and stand offish to the crowd and to his band however it did not seem to put a damper on the night’s festivities. Before the last note rang out it was clear that everyone within the two level theater seemed to be having a great time and enjoyed every minute of the night’s performance. The tour runs through mid December so there is still plenty of time to catch of these great performances.

Set List:
1.) The Train
2.) Mountain Climbing
3.) Blues of Desperation
4.) No Good Place for the Lonely
5.) How Deep This River Runs
6.) Breaking Up Someone’s Home
7.) I Get Evil
8.) Angel of Mercy
9.) Slow Train
10.) Driving Towards the Daylight
11.) Boogie with Stu
12.) Last Kiss
13.) How Many More Times

Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Kids Love & Family Expo is September 12 & 13, 2015 at Museum of Discovery and Science

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL – September 3, 2015 – The Museum of Discovery and Science announced today that it will host the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Kids Love & Family Expo for the second year in a row on September 12 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and September 13, 2015 from noon to 5 p.m. It will be a fun-filled family-themed weekend event produced by Entercom South Florida 101.5 LITE-FM, Magic 102.7, 790 AM The Ticket and the new 104.3 FM The Shark.

The Kids Love & Family Expo is a celebrity-filled extravaganza with everything that KIDS LOVE! With over 75+ interactive activities and exhibits for kids, the Museum of Discovery and Science is already something that KIDS LOVE! And while the kids are having fun, parents will discover the latest and greatest in products and services to make their busy lives healthier, easier, and more enjoyable from more than 50 sponsors & exhibitors!!!

Visitors will get a chance to meet celebrities, such as TV’s Lea Black from the Real Housewives of Miami and Genevieve Goings from Choo-Choo Soul on Disney, Jr. Plus, a special appearance from Kid KJ “Lil’ Monster Truck Jam and Ride”. Take a ride in a real monster truck, watch Kid KJ demonstrate monster truck tricks, and get an up close look at the monster trucks in Kid KJ’s & The Mighty Monsters collection! Don’t forget to bring your camera as there will be appearances from favorite your storybook characters – Madeline, Curious George and Clifford the Big Red Dog – on the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Storytelling Stage throughout the Kids Love & Family Expo!
Museum President/CEO Kim Cavendish stated, “The Kids Love and Family Expo is truly a treat for the entire family. Costume characters, local exhibitors, dancing and prizes highlight this special two-day event. Plus, visitors will get to explore the hundreds of interactive exhibits that the Museum has to offer. Come one, come all.”

To learn more about the Kids Love and Family Expo, visit: http://tinyurl.com/kidsexpo15
Kids Love and Family Expo 2014 Photos: http://tinyurl.com/kidsandfam

 

ABOUT THE MUSEUM OF DISCOVERY AND SCIENCE

The mission of the Museum of Discovery and Science is to provide experiential pathways to lifelong learning in science for children and adults through exhibits, programs and films. Founded in 1976 as The Discovery Center, the nonprofit facility serves approximately 400,000 visitors annually. Major operational support for the Museum is provided through generous support by Leadership Guild members including: JM Family Enterprises, Inc., Broward Health, Sun Sentinel and Wells Fargo.

The Museum is open seven days a week, 365 days a year with extended IMAX® hours on most evenings. Exhibit only admission prices are $14 adults; $13 seniors; $12 children 2 to 12. Children under 2 are free. The Museum of Discovery and Science is at 401 SW Second Street, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33312. For more information call 954.467.MODS (6637) or www.mods.org

Linkin Park’s Joe Hahn talks about directing the film “Mall”

Photo Credit: Brandon Cox

Joe Hahn is probably best known as member of the multi-platinum selling rock group Linkin Park. However Joe is an accomplished music video director who recently made the jump to feature film directing. Hahn’s first full length film titled “Mall” is an adaption of the Eric Bogosian book of the same name. The film stars Vincent D’Onofrio, Gina Gershon and Cameron Monaghan and is currently available via Netflix. Media Mikes had the chance to speak with Joe recently about the film and his move to directing full lengths.

Adam Lawton: Can you give us some background on how you got involved with this project?
Joe Hahn: I had come across the script through a mutual friend who was a producer on the film. They worked with Vincent who was working on this project with Eric Bogosian who wrote the book the film is based on. He also was the writer on one of Oliver Stone’s early films titled “Talk Radio” and a bunch of other great things. I think Eric has a very punk rock perspective of Americana. When I read the script I loved it and really thought it was great. I then went and read the book and loved that as well. I liked how the screenplay made since of what was going on in the book without being a carbon copy. I couldn’t put it down and I had all these ideas running through my head. I called my friend up and told him this was perfect and that I knew how to do the film and that it would be very easy for me to do.

AL: Were you able to be free with your direction or did you stay more to the original script?
JH: I definitely stuck to the essence of the script. I think the visual interpretation was my thing. Every person you meet and work with on a film project acts as collaboration. Everyone who touches it is part of the process. There is always added development that each person brings to the table. We all worked together from day one. The templates were all there in screenplay. We did however have to make some tweaks along the way just to have things make a little more sense. It’s all about fine tuning the process.

AL: What do you feel is the defining characteristic of this film that showcases you as the director?
JH: Film is a great way to get someone’s attention for 90 minutes or so. With a full length film you can really get into the details of the story and its characters. With a lot of the music videos and short form things I have done you have to get in and get out as quickly as possible. There is something that is exciting about full length film experience where people can unwind and enjoy themselves. I am a fan of films and the experience so that’s something I want to try and carry over with these long form projects.

AL: Did you notice any major differences when you first started working on this film having come from working mostly on shorts?
JH: I think on the creative side a full length is just a longer version of everything that goes in to a short or music video. With a full length you often have multiple story lines happening and a variety character dynamics. You have to figure out how to make all of that fit in with how the film is written. I think when something is really well written you can use that as your master template and then the details come along to help make sense of everything. The biggest difficult I think in all of this is the logistics portion of things. The creative stuff is the fun part and something that comes naturally for me. The business side of things is where it becomes difficult for me. There’s just so much going on and so many different people involved on that front that it can be hard at times.

AL: When it came time to edit the film how did that process work for you?
JH: We did do some rearranging during the editing process. We also did a bit of voice over work as well. We actually came back later and did a majority of that after shooting was completed. After seeing the first cut of the film I felt that the films main character was Jeff played by Cameron Monaghan. We see his experiences as the film progresses and you start to wonder if what’s happening could or could not be in Jeff’s imagination. As you watch this character you sort of see how he reacts in certain situations and it makes you wonder.

AL: Looking back on the finished product. What are your feelings towards it and is directing something you would do again?
JH: There are certain moments where things feel perfect. Being creative through music, art and film has a very Zen like feeling for me. I can totally dive into projects and enjoy myself while working with people I can challenge. The whole process is very enjoyable. I am fortunate enough to where I can do different things and I hope to be able to keep doing the things I love as time goes on.

Joseph Russo talks about playing Joe Pesci in Clint Eastwood’s “Jersey Boys”

I’m sure it sounded easy for Joseph Russo. Cast in his first major feature film role, the actor portrays a name familiar to movie fans all over the world: Joe Pesci. That’s right, long before he was asking how funny we thought he was (and winning an Oscar to boot), Joe Pesci was a New Jersey boy who dreamed of being a singer (he actually released an album in 1968, “Little Joe Sure Can Sing,” billed as “Joe Ritchie.”

Joey Russo has worked a lot since his debut in 2010, appearing in such television shows as “Bones,” “How I Met Your Mother” and “Parks and Recreation.” He even has a little “Jersey” on his resume’, starring in 2012’s television film “Jersey Shore Shark Attack.” This week he opens in “Jersey Boys,” director Clint Eastwood’s film version of the Tony-award winning Broadway hit. While promoting the film Russo sat down with me and talked about…..

Mike Smith: How did you get involved in “Jersey Boys?”
Joseph Russo: I got a phone call from my manager saying they were looking for an actor to play a young Joe Pesci. I went in and read for the casting director. Then I started to hear that I was on Clint’s short list…then I was on top of his short list….then I was his choice….and I found out a few weeks later that the part was actually mine.

MS: Did you know before you went in to read for the part that Joe Pesci had a musical background?
JR: Once I got the audition I did some research because I had no clue how he was attached to this story. Once I got word that I was seriously being considered for the role I really took the opportunity to piece together a time-line of his life from then until now to really understand how he was a part of that group.

MS: Playing a real-life person, especially someone as well known as Joe Pesci….did you have to reign in your performance at all so that you weren’t doing a caricature? I did notice in one scene you ask “Funny how?” about something and then in another you do a “ok, ok, ok” riff.
JR: I’m so glad you picked up on that. My main thing was that I didn’t want to make him a caricature. That was my goal when I went in to audition. Should I change my voice or not? I didn’t see the Broadway musical because I wanted to create something that was totally my own. I wanted to make him a real guy and at the same time earn the right to play a character like Joe Pesci. What I wanted to do was sprinkle a little Pesci-isms in each of my scenes. Show a little “Casino.” Show a little “Goodfellas.” Show a little Leo Getz (the “Lethal Weapon” series). I wanted to find a way to portray Joe Pesci from age 16 to 26. Because really, the first time the public saw him in “Raging Bull” he was close to 40. So I came up with the idea that everything Joe Pesci has done as an actor in his later life was drawn from something that was inside him when he was younger. Maybe at one time he did say “ok, ok, ok.” Maybe he did ask “I’m funny how.” I wanted to pay homage to a real guy. That was my main focus…paying homage.

MS: Once you got the role were you able to seek Joe Pesci out and maybe get some insight into his life and experiences back then?
JR: Once I got the role I immediately tried to get in touch with him. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to. My next avenue was to call up Tommy Devito. (NOTE: Devito was one of the founding members of the Four Seasons and, according to “Jersey Boys,” now works for Joe Pesci. Ironically, Tommy Devito is also the name of the character that Pesci plays in “Goodfellas”). I talked to Tommy and he gave me a lot of insight into how Joe was back then. He was a clown, always joking around and making everybody laugh. I also worked hand in hand with my acting coach and mentor, Jocelyn Jones, and she really, really helped walk my way through finding out who this guy was in this time period….what was going on in society during this time period…and coming up with my own guy based on that. It was really great. Jocelyn was phenomenal in helping to walk me through that.

MS: Did Clint give you a lot of lee-way with your performance?
JR: Yes, that was the great thing about it. I really didn’t know what to expect. I felt that I had won the right to do this role. I had done all of the prep work. The hours and hours of research, prep work and rehearsal. I knew I had won this right but then again, when I showed up on set, I was a little nervous because I didn’t know if he would let me play it as I wanted to play it. And he did. More so, really. He really let me take the role and make it my own. Even the day when I said “Funny, how?” I just threw that in there. We were rehearsing the scene and I thought how great it would be if Clint started laughing because we came up with that. We were shooting the master shot for the scene and I said “Funny how?” and the script supervisor said “I don’t see where that is in the script.” The camera operator told him “you’re not gonna find it in the script.” We all look at Clint and he smiles and says, “that’s genius!” He let us know we could run with our performances. If he felt something wasn’t right he would tell us. It was a great collaboration on set. It was nice to have that freedom.

Blu-ray Review “Joe”

Actors: Nicolas Cage, Tye Sheridan, Ronnie Gene Blevins, Gary Poulter
Director: David Gordon Green
Rated: R (Restricted)
Studio: Lions Gate
Release Date: June 17, 2014
Run Time: 117 minutes

Film: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Everyone gives Nicolas Cage a hard time but I think the guy is amazing. “Joe” is no question of his best recent roles. It is powerful and very intense. This is the old Nicolas Cage. He is back! Director David Gordon Green has done indie films like 2000’s “George Washington” to big comedies like “Pineapple Express”, but it is nice to him him get back to his indie roots. Tye Sheridan broke out big after his role in Jeff Nichols’ “Mud” and this just continues the trend. This film got no attention in theaters, which is a shame since it deserves it. I highly recommend it!

Synopsis: Nicolas Cage delivers an intensely powerful performance as Joe, an ex-con with a hair-trigger temper who is trying to stay out of trouble, making an honest yet meager life for himself, and the unlikeliest of role models. But when he meets a troubled 15-year old homeless boy (Sheridan) in need of help from a violent and destitute father, Joe is faced with the heart-breaking choice of redemption or ruin.

Lions Gate is releasing this film as a combo pack with Blu-ray and Ultraviolet Digital Copy included. The 1080p transfer is very impressive. Green’s eye for picking out amazing shots have always been impressive. It is also complemented by the amazing visuals shot by Tim Orr. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track is also very effective. The special features are a nice bonus as well. There are two featurettes “The Making of Joe” and “The Long Gravel Drive: The Origins of Joe” and some deleted scenes. Lastly there is a solid audio commentary track with director David Gordon Green, composer David Wingo and actor Brian D. Mays.

Celebrate “G.I. Joe” 50th Anniversary and Enter to Win a T-Shirt [ENDED]

Media Mikes is teaming up with TVStoreOnline.com to giveaway some great official T-shirt’s to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of “G.I. Joe”. If you would like to enter for your chance to win one of these great prizes, please leave us a comment below or send us an email with your favorite G.I. Joe character. This giveaway will remain open until June 20th at Noon, Eastern Time. This is open to our readers in US and Canada only. One entry per person, per household. All other entries will be considered invalid. Media Mikes will randomly select winners. Winners will be alerted via email.

Yo Joe! You, too, can be a Real American Hero wearing this heather gray 100% cotton t-shirt. You know you want to relive those memories of the classic ’80s action cartoons and knowing is half the battle! Order today, or Cobra wins

3D Blu-ray Review “G.I. Joe: Retaliation 3D”

Actors: Channing Tatum, Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Willis, Ray Stevenson, Adrianne Palicki, Ray Park
Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Studio: Paramount
Release Date: July 30, 2013
Run Time: 110 minutes

Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
3D: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

I am an 80′s kid and I have and always will be a fan of “G.I. Joe”. The first film “G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra” was fun but a bit of a mess. “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is a nice improvement, yet far from perfect. It is jam-packed with non-stop action and some great visuals. One problem that I had with the first film was how cartoony it looked. This film is must more realistic and the way they should have done “G.I. Joe” from the beginning. If you’ve seen the trailers then you will know that action stars Dwayne Johnson and Bruce Willis have joined the team and help to rescue this franchise. They both deliver in terms of amping up this film to a higher profile. Most importantly, they ditched Marlon Waynes from the first one, which was the worst casting ever. If you are looking for a fun and action-packed time, then check this sequel out. I am sure that we have not seen the end of this franchise. GO JOE!

“G.I. Joe: Retaliation” focuses around the team not only fighting their mortal enemy COBRA, but they are forced to contend with threats from within the government that jeopardize their very existence. The G.I. Joes get framed by Zartan, who disguises as the Commander in Chief (Jonathan Pryce), of stealing nuclear warheads. Due to this the elimination of the Joe’s are put in place by the fake president and it is up to Roadblock (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson), Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki), Flint (D.J. Cotrona), Snake Eyes (Ray Park) and Jinx (Elodie Yung) to fight the Cobra Commander and put a holt on his plans for world domination.

Paramount is releasing this film as a Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combo pack with an UltraViolet. In addition, this release will include a limited time offer to receive a FREE set of high-quality, collectible personalized dog tags. This film was delayed so it can be post-converted to 3D in order to follow the trend of recent releases. I would like to say that it works for the film but it is really doesn’t. There isn’t really much depth or wow factor added to film with this aspect. The 3D isn’t the worst that I have ever seen but it is not the best either. As much as it pains me to the say, the 2D version is actually much more clearer and is the preferred way to enjoy this film fully. Despite the 3D, the 1080p transfer is super clear and works well with non-stop action. When it comes to audio tracks, “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” will literally knock you on your ass with its Dolby TrueHD 7.1 track. It sounds amazing, period.

All of the special features appear on the 2D Blu-ray, there are no 3D extras here. First up we have an audio commentary track with director John M. Chu and producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura, which delivers tons of great information about the production. Next up we have “G.I. Joe: Declassified”, which is an eight part series of featurettes. “Mission Briefing” looks into the production and design with director Jon M. Chu. “Deployment” takes us through the military aspect of the film with Military Advisor and ex Navy SEAL Harry Humphries. “Two Ninjas” looks into the Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes role in the film. “The Desert Attack” looks into filming the film’s critical sequence. ”Cobra Strikes” looks into the Cobra’s look and sets for his evilness. “The Lone Soldiers” looks into the history behind the series”. “The Monastery” looks into the creating the huge Storm Shadow-Snake Eyes fight. “Fort Sumter” talks about shooting at Fort Pike. Lastly there are three short deleted scenes.

“G.I. Joe: Retaliation” Bursts Onto Blu-ray™, Blu-ray 3D™ and DVD July 30, 2013

DWAYNE JOHNSON, CHANNING TATUM & BRUCE WILLIS STAR IN THE EXPLOSIVE GLOBAL HIT 

G.I. JOE: RETALIATION 

Thrill-Packed Blockbuster Bursts Onto Blu-ray™, Blu-ray 3D™ and DVD July 30, 2013

Fans Can Be the First to Own the Action Extravaganza on Digital July 16th  

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (June 4, 2013) –  Called “a stunning, high-flying, super-charged blast of fun” (Shawn Edwards, FOX-TV), the $355+ million worldwide blockbuster  G.I. JOE: RETALIATION explodes onto Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD and On Demand July 30, 2013 from Paramount Home Media Distribution.  Based on Hasbro’s popular G.I. JOE brand, the film will be available on Digital two weeks early on July 16th.  “Born to play a G.I. JOE” (Scott Bowles, USA Today), Dwayne Johnson embodies ROADBLOCK and he and Channing Tatum “are a match made in action flick heaven” (James Oster, JoBlo.com) in this “cool ride” (Richard Corliss, Time) that is “awesome times 10!” (Shawn Edwards, FOX-TV).  From Paramount Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures, G.I. JOE: RETALIATION also stars action legend Bruce Willis as the original G.I. JOE, as well as Adrianne Palicki, D.J. Cotrona and Jonathan Pryce.  In director Jon M. Chu’s heart-pounding thrill ride, the  G.I. JOE team not only faces off against its mortal enemy COBRA, it is also forced to contend with threats from within the government that jeopardize its very existence.

The G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Blu-ray/DVD combo pack with UltraViolet™ comes fully loaded with declassified special features that take viewers behind the lines to explore the action and the characters, what it took to bring the film to life and more. The film will also be available in a Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combo pack or as a single disc DVD.

In addition, both the Blu-ray/DVD and Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD combos include a limited time offer to receive a FREE set of personalized dog tags.  Consumers can visit a dedicated website and enter their unique code along with personal information to receive their own high-quality, collectible dog tags (see insert for complete details).

The Blu-ray releases available for purchase will be enabled with UltraViolet, a new way to collect, access and enjoy movies.  With UltraViolet, consumers can add movies to their digital collection in the cloud, and then stream or download them – reliably and securely – to a variety of devices.

G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack

The G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Blu-ray is presented in 1080p high definition with English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, Portuguese 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles.  The DVD in the combo pack is presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 TVs with English 5.1 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles.  The combo pack includes access to a digital copy of the film as well as the following:

Blu-ray

  • Feature film in high definition
  • Commentary by director Jon M. Chu and producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura
  • Special Features

o   Mission Briefing—A look at pre-production, previsualization, storyboards and more.

o   Deployment— As filming begins we take a closer look at the stunts, costumes and more.

o   Two Ninjas—Focus on two G.I. JOE favorites, SNAKE EYES and JINX, and the filming of the Dojo sequence.

o   The Desert Attack—An in-depth look at the filming of this pivotal action sequence.

o   COBRA Strikes—Highlights of the villains featured in the film.

o   The Lone Soldiers—Behind-the-scenes as ROADBLOCK, FLINT and LADY JAYE go on the run.

o   The Monastery—An examination of the Himalayan escape sequence.

o   Fort Sumter—An all-access view of the epic climax.

  • Deleted Scenes

DVD

  • Feature film in standard definition

 

G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack

The G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Blu-ray 3D combo pack includes all of the above, as well as the film in high definition and 3D on a disc presented in 1080p high definition with English 7.1 Dolby TrueHD, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, Portuguese 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles.

G.I. JOE: RETALIATION Single-Disc DVD

The single-disc DVD is presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 TVs with English 5.1 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English Audio Description and English, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles.  The disc includes the feature film in standard definition.

Todd Tucker talks about working make-up effects for "G.I. Joe: Retaliation" and The Smurfs 2"

Todd Tucker is the owner of special make-up effects studio, Illusion Industries. He has worked on films like “Hannibal”, “Pirates of the Caribbean  The Curse of the Black Pearl” to TV shows like “Soutland” and “Hannah Montana”. 2013 is a very busy year for him with seven projects aiming to be released including “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” and The Smurfs 2″.  Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Todd about these projects and what we can expect.

Mike Gencarelli: Let’s breakdown your projects for 2013, first let’s chat about your role working on “G.I. Joe: Retaliation”?
Todd Tucker: Unfortunately with this film, I can’t tell you exactly what we did yet but I can describe our experience. What I can say about “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is that I think the fans are really going to dig what we did on this one. We did a number of different aspects including character looks etc. The first film was cool but it felt a little too much like a video game. It was very CG heavy. Jon Chu, the director, really made this film look like it was happening. Everything is very practical and it feels like you are really experiencing what you are seeing, as oppose to playing a game. The actors are really good at locking in their characters and not making it cheesy. I think this film is going to be very cool and also visually off-the-charts.

MG: Tell us about your work on “The Smurfs 2” and how does it compare from the first film?
TT: It cool since right when I started Illusion Industries, we got called to work on “The Smurfs” and we designed and created the look for Hank Azaria. We made all the appliances. He has a fake nose, dentures, ears, eyebrows and hair. So he looks pretty different. For the first movie, I wasn’t able to be on set. We created everything, did the make-up tests and then handed it off to somebody else. For “The Smurfs 2”, I got to go to Montreal and worked on Hank Azaria’s make-up for the whole show. It was interesting since we started to used the same nose and ears from the first film but Hank had lost some weight and was a little more buffed out. So we had to go in and re-sculpt the nose and downscale it a little bit to adjust for the look. For that point on, we had to just maintain him daily. He is just such a great actor and perfect for the role. He really brought it to life for sure.

MG: We go from action to animation to drama, tell us about your role in “The Iceman”?
TT: Originally we were going to do all sorts of character age make-ups for this film but then we found out it was not going to help the film. We then created all these period looks. We made all the wigs, mustaches and hairpieces. We did a few things on the lead actor, Michael Shannon, for the film. I can tell you this, I saw it at the Toronto Film Festival and I am not a big mafia movie fan but this movie is intense and the performances are great. I was very proud to have my name at the end of this movie.

MG: If you had to choose out of these three films above, which was the biggest challenge?
TT: The most challenging was “G.I. Joe: Retaliation”. We have our main studio here in Burbank but I also have another in New Orleans. The only problem is for “G.I. Joe: Retaliation”, the build was kind of big and they wanted us to relocate everyone to our Burbank studio to there. So we had to all relocate and move into a haunted house for three months [laughs]. So that was a fun but also a challenge. But it was a really cool project to work.

MG: Can you give us an idea about your work on “Fright Night 2”?
TT: The DP on the film I co-wrote and directed “Monster Mutt” is also the DP on “Fright Night 2”. They were filming the movie in Bulgaria around Christmas time last year. They were going through some changes and need us to come up with a creature design for the finale scene. So two of my guys here put it together very quickly and traveled it down. I think it is going to be very cool.

MG: With the films mentioned above and TV shows like “Southland”; do you enjoy the variety of genres?
TT: The thing that is cool is that all different movies and TV shows that we have coming out this year are ranging all across the board. We have family, horror, action, drama and TV shows. We occasionally work on “Sons of Anarchy” and do a lot for the Disney Channel. We are also working currently on Conan O’Brien’s show doing these zombie skits. So yeah, we really like to dapple in all the different genres.

MG: Tell us what else you got planned for 2013?
TT: This year alone in 2013, we have seven films coming out. We got “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” and “The Smurfs 2”. We just finished “Fright Night 2”. we did a movie called “Deadlock Pass”, which was shot in Russia by Renny Harlin. Just did a film called “The East”, which I saw at Sundance and it was a really great flick. Also did a movie called “Fort Bliss”, which is a drama. We are still also doing some TV with Disney Channel. We also have an in-house production company that we produce, direct and come up with in-house projects. We did a family film that I mentioned called “Monster Mutt”, which just came out on DirecTV, iTunes and Vudu this month. It is also available on Walmart.com, Target.com and Amazon.com. So that is doing pretty well. We also have two in-house projects that I am directing this year. One of them is an action/horror film and the other is a very dark fantasy. We are looking forward to that.

Blu-ray Review “Killer Joe: Unrated Director’s Cut”

Actors: Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch, Thomas Haden Church, Juno Temple, Gina Gershon
Directors: William Friedkin
Rated: Unrated
Studio: Lionsgate
Release Date: December 21, 2012
Run Time: 102 minutes

Film: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars

“Killer Joe” received some controversy behind it when it was released in theaters with its NC-17 rating. But controversy is nothing new to the Academy Award-winning director, William Friedkin, known best for “The Exorcist” and “The French Connection”. This dark comedy is based on the play by Pulitzer and Tony Award winner Tracy Letts and it converts well to the screen. I wasn’t sure what to expect at first but “Killer Joe” is a real surprise hit of the year. It packs some amazing performance from Matthew McConaughey, which was both ferrous and yet funny. The genre of a dark comedy is always a hard line to walk well, “Killer Joe” may not be for everyone.  But if you enjoy Friedkin then I would definitely recommend checking this unique film out.

Official Synopsis: When 22-year-old Chris (Emile Hirsch) finds himself in debt to a drug lord, he hires a hit man to dispatch his mother, whose $50,000 life insurance policy benefits his sister Dottie (Juno Temple). Chris finds Joe Cooper (Matthew McConaughey), a creepy, crazy Dallas cop who moonlights as a contract killer. When Chris can’t pay Joe upfront, Jose sets his sight on Dottie as collateral for the job. The contract killer and his hostage develop an unusual bond. Like from a modern-day, twisted fairytale, “Killer Joe” Cooper becomes the prince to Dottie’s Cinderella.

The Blu-ray presentation comes with a sharp 1080p transfer and DTS-HD MA 5.1 audio track.  BOth not ground-breaking but very clear and sharp. Since this film was released NC-17 in theaters, the film arrives on Blu-ray in this Unrated Director’s Cut.  There will also be an R-rated DVD version released but I prefer the director’s vision of the film.  The Unrated Director’s Cut will also feature an exclusive audio commentary track from director William Friedkin, highly recommended. The rest of the special features are decent but not spectacular. There is a featurette called “Southern Fried Hospitality: From Stage to Screen”, takes us through from the beginning.  Besides that there is some footage from SXSW including a Q&A with Cast and an intro by William Friedkin.  Wrapping up, there is the Red Band Theatrical Trailer included.

The Art of Joe Alves, Production Designer of “Jaws” and “Close Encounters,” Now Available to Fans

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With almost six decades in the film business, it would be hard for Joe Alves to pick his favorite project. Alves, an Oscar nominated and BAFTA award winning production designer, is responsible for the look of such classic films as “Jaws,” “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” “Escape From New York” and many others. Recently Alves decided to offer to fans the opportunity to purchase autographed copies of some of his story boards from “Jaws” at his new site – www.joealvesmovieart.com

Alves is also offering an exclusive autographed compilation of some of his conceptions for “Close Encounters” as well as a composite of his visions of the ID from “Forbidden Planet,” one of the first Hollywood features Mr. Alves worked on.

With this year marking the 35th Anniversary of “Close Encounters” please take a moment to revisit my interview with Mr. Alves in which he discusses his amazing career.

Mr. Alves has graciously provided Media Mikes readers a chance to win an autographed “Jaws” illustration of their choice. All you have to do is let us know your favorite scene from “Jaws.” One random winner will be picked from all comments and that winner will be notified by email. Contest ends at Midnight EST on December 16.

Adam Green and Joe Lynch talk about FEARnet’s “Holliston” and Season 2 plans!

Adam Green and Joe Lynch are the masterminds behind the hit FEARnet sitcom “Holliston”. The first season of the show has just recently been released on Blu-ray and DVD and Media Mikes had the chance to talk with the guys about their favorite moments and what we can expect from season two.

Adam Lawton: Can you give us some back ground on how you were able to get Dee Snider and Dave Brockie involved with the show?
Adam Green: I have had a very long friendship with Dee Snyder. I actually came up with the Lance Rocket character when I was DJing at the Rainbow Bar and Grill on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. The place is a heavy metal hang out but it’s also like a time capsule where guys in there 50’s and 60’s don’t realize the 80’s are over. It’s hilarious but sad at the same time. The design of “Holliston” is that every character has a dream beyond what their day job is. When I approached everyone about 4 years ago Dee was the only one who was going to be playing a fictitious character. The rest of us would play similar versions of our real selves. Dee was a little apprehensive about the role. He told me that he was never anything like this guy but a lot people thought he was because of Twisted Sister’s imagery.  He had spent the last 20 years trying to redefine himself and now we wanted him to play this role. Thankfully after he read the script he thought it was funny and that it would give him a chance to poke fun at that whole stigma. Dee is having a blast. With Dave aka Oderus I have known for 13 years that there was going to be an imaginary alien in my closet that gives me advice. I have been a lifelong Gwar fan and have hoped it would be him. Thankfully this show took so long to get made I was at a point to where I could reach out to anyone I wanted. The guys were aware of me and Dave was a very quick yes.
Joe Lynch: It is so crazy that both of those guys are in it. Being an instant fan of Gwar from the first time I saw them and having known Dee from when my Dad used to ride bikes with him is just awesome. I am very glad the show happened when it did as Adam was able to say this is the cast I want.

AL: Where there any reservations about signing to FEARnet due to their limited coverage?
AG: That is what really made the show possible. This show had been developed for a major network at one point over its 13 year process. When it was in development at the major network the first draft of the show came out and it wasn’t even my show anymore. If I had gone with that version of the show I would have only been doing it for the money. With Fear net coming in to existence and being a startup network has given us the opportunity to become the flag ship show. Creatively we could do exactly what we wanted. There were some limitations due to just getting started and not being on every provider but, most people these days don’t watch a show when it actually airs. They watch it afterwards on DVD or Netflix. We got in on the ground level and are very important to them as we are their first original show. So far we are their only originally show. We have their undivided attention. They make those shows with us which is a great experience. I don’t think it would be the way it is anywhere else. We look at Fear net still getting their footing as a positive thing.

AL: Is there a moment from season one that sticks out for you both as a highlight?
JL: It is hard to pick just one moment. The first episode for me was definitely a highlight. This was the first time that we got to see ourselves in this format. There is something completely surreal about seeing yourself in a sitcom. There’s this very strange moment where you think “oh my god I’m on a TV show”. It’s a shock and awe moment. When you watch that first episode we start in the Movie Crypt and end in the Holliston Grill. To see that all happen and having to myself drink all those black coffees is something I will never forget. Watching that arc from episode 1 to episode 6 which features a ton of guest stars was really great.
AG: We didn’t shoot the episodes in order. In fact the pilot was one of the final episodes we shot. We did that because I never want to shoot the beginning of the movie first. That’s the time when people are still finding their footing. We shot the “Candy Man” episode first which featured Tony Todd. It’s funny when we read reviews where they are talking about the pilot and how we are just finding our way but by episode 3/4 we are hitting our stride. That’s not true. That is the audience hitting their stride. The first two or three episodes you watch you are still getting in to it and becoming attached to the characters. Shooting that pilot with the show being so autobiographical was tough at times. The scene where I first see Cory and her new boyfriend was a very emotional scene for me as it was real and I had to keep doing it over and over. Everyone loved it and thought it was great but I was just dying inside. I will never forget that.

AL:Special guest-wise, who can we be watching for in season two?
AG: Kane Hodder and Daniel Harris will both be back in season 2. We also have David Naughton from “American Werewolf in London” and James Gunn the director of “Slither. Sid Haig will also make an appearance this season. There will be a lot of guests. We have been very lucky to have people like Derek Meers and everyone else involved again this season. We really wanted people who you saw in season 1 come back as it feels natural being “Holliston” has a small town setting. It’s something very natural. When an audience likes a certain character you want to try and keep them around. Even Cory’s boyfriend will be back. People just love him. There are some names we are holding back on purpose as we want there to be some surprises.

AL: Has there been a specific air date scheduled for season two?
AG: We know that it will probably air around the same time as season 1 did last year. We haven’t heard the actual date yet however it will most likely be spring time. My guess would be May or June. There will be 10 episodes as well as a Christmas episode which will air in December. What’s great about the Christmas special is it’s not your average stand alone hour special. It really acts as the connective tissue between season one and two. A lot of really big shit goes down between characters that set up things in season 2. We are really excited for this episode. I am editing it now and I think it will air in either the second or third week of December.

AL: Do either of you have any updates on “Killer Pizza” or “Knights of Badassdom”?
AG: As of now I am only the writer on “Killer Pizza”. It is a big studio movie meaning that things move incredibly slow. The writing process was a solid two years. A lot of that time was spent waiting for contracts and re-writes. I am now done with my contractual commitments to the script and it has been submitted to MGM. I haven’t heard anything either way but I wouldn’t expect to this soon. Hopefully something happens with the movie as I would love to see it get made. It is a really fun movie.
JL: That is kind of the same thing with “Knights of Badassdom”. My work is done so now it comes down to the people financing the film. I have heard the film will be out sometime next year. I have my fingers crossed just like everyone else.

AL: Can you tell us a little about “Everly”?
JL: Right now we are doing a lot of prepping and casting. The film is a really ambitious thriller that is completely different from the things we have done before. This is something that I have kind of always wanted to do. I co-wrote the film and we hope to start shooting in January. Things have been a little tough because of casting and other commitments. I also didn’t want this to get in the way of the work on “Holliston”.

AL: Any other projects you guys would like to mention?
AG: We are just about finished with post on “Hatchet III”. I have not heard the release date yet. The intention was to have it out in America by early 2013. Recently in an effort to help stop pirating distributors have started coordinating release dates worldwide so that may hold things up a bit. Until the talks are done between all of the people distributing the film I won’t know an exact release date. I will also be continuing my work on a documentary with artist Alex Pardee titled “Digging up the Marrow”. That has been sort of a side project the past year or so but I hope to be able to free up some more time to get that film completed. There also a few other things Joe and I are in talk to work on but we can’t say anything just yet about those.

Joe Turkel talks about Stanley Kubrick, “The Shining” & “Blade Runner”

Joe Turkel is known best for his role of Lloyd the Bartender in “The Shining”.  Joe also played the iconic role of Dr. Eldon Tyrell in Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner”.  Media Mikes had a rare chance to chat with this amazing actor, courtesy of C & V Promotions, to discuss his iconic roles and tell some great stories.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about how you originally get invovled with Stanley Kubrick on “The Shining”?
Joe Turkel: That was the third picture I did with Stanley Kubrick. He first saw me in a little picture I did called “Man Crazy”. He liked the work I did and said he would like to use me in a picture he did called “The Killing” in 1956. He said it was a little role but he had something better coming up. Little did I know then but he was talking about “Paths of Glory”. He changed my life.

MG: Having worked twice before with Kubrick; did his style change over 20 years later on “The Shining”?
JT: He took a lot of time then but a lot of time on “The Shining”. He had a lot of attority and he wasn’t afraid to use that attority. Like with “Eyes Wide Shut”, he had a rule that anyone like producers or related to the film will not be permitted on the set. He just had this attority.

MG: How did you prepare for this unique role of Lloyd the Bartender in “The Shining”?
JT: It was just another part for me. I approached it like I would any other and that was it.

MG: How was it working with Jack Nicholson?
JT: Jack Nicholson is just the greatest. I’ll tell you a story about Jack. I am responisble for his career. In 1961 he has just come out from the East Coast and I had been there for ten years. He was broke most of the time. One day I was at the race track with a friend of mine and I hit a daily double for $4,400 dollars. Now that is a lot of money in those days. As I was getting the money settled, my friend saw Jack and I told him what just happened. Kenny, my friend, told me he owed Jack $800 bucks. So I told him to pay him and I gave him the money. Jack said to me “You know something Turkel, I was going to go back to New York but it is too fucking cold. I will take this money and it will get me through the winter.” But during the winter, he got lucky got a role and the rest is history.

MG: With a role that is consists of two scenes, how can you reflect on the impact they had on the film?
JT: I was suprised they had such an impact. Stanley and I were talking on set about how good it was and I told him “Stanley, thanks but I don’t want to wait 25 years between pictures”. We were both New Yorkers so we had this special bond. He told me we would work together again but that was the last time I saw him.

 

MG: Since the films are so different; did the productions of “The Shining” and “Blade Runner” differ much?
JT: Ridley Scott three times during my filming and asked me how I thought Stanley Kubrick would approach certain scenes. He was completely enamored with his work. Steven Spielberg said he was “the grandmaster of filmmaking”. So for Ridley Scott to come over and ask me for suggestion it was amazing.

MG: How did you prepare for the such an iconic character, Dr. Eldon Tyrell?
JT: Well I mad it that way [laughs]. I played it that way. It was a nice role and I did well. I have had better roles. I have had worse roles. Everything I have done has been unique from the fucking ruler of the world to a bartender. They were all crazy. I also like to do
comedy, which I have done over years in television.

MG: How do you feel about Ridley Scottworking on a sequel after all these years?
It is not going to be as good as the first. Sequels never are. The first one is always the one looked at.

MG: What do you like most about meeting your fans at conventions?
JT: It’s amazing. Just amazing. They are so gratitous. They are so happy to meet me. When I did a Q&A, the house was completely packed. They were asking questions about Kubrick and “Blade Runner”. I was taking pictures at the bar in full costume as Lloyd The Bartender from “The Shining”, so that was really cool as well.

Joe Maddalena talks about Season 2 of Syfy’s “Hollywood Treasure”

Joe Maddalena, who is owner of Profiles in History, the world’s largest auctioneer of original movie, television, science fiction, fantasy, and pop culture collectibles, returned Tuesday May 22nd at 10:00pm for season two of “Hollywood Treasure” on Syfy. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Joe about season two of “Hollywood Treasure” and what we can expect.

Mike Gencarelli: In season one and you dealt with a lot of like collectible items and whatnot. I was reading that this season you’re going to be working with the house from “American Horror Story”. Can you tell us a little bit about that and how it differs for you?
Joe Maddalena: What’s interesting is that as a company, we’re trying to expand our reach into all areas of things that have to do with television and motion pictures, and this opportunity came along. We got a phone call from a guy, and he said, hey, I have some things from “American Horror Story”. It’d be cool to get some props, and lo and behold, we met this man, and we ended up at the “American Horror Story” house. The actual house is here in Los Angeles, and it was kind of surreal, because I had no idea. And I’m walking up to it, and it was really eerie, because you’re in the house. I mean, you’re in the rooms. I mean, you’re in the basement. You’re thinking of people hanging themselves, and all this crazy stuff going on. And it’s really cool because this was like a 17,000 square foot mansion, and it’s just another side of our business that we’re pursuing, is we’re going after these properties now, because they have such a value besides being a house. So being an “American Horror Story” fan, it was the coolest thing I’ve ever walked through in my entire life, to go through that house. And it was scary. I mean, being in the basement – they turned the lights off; you wanted to run out of there!

MG: What would you say is your biggest challenge both juggling, running your business, Profiles in History, and also filming a reality show?
JM: I really want people to understand that I’m trying to paint a picture on the show that’s real, I mean, that it’s like that this is kind of like really what we do so they get an idea, because people are always like, well, where do you get this stuff? How do you find it? How do you authenticate it? So we’re trying to answer those questions and give you slivers of like, a business and obviously in a sense for television, but that’s the biggest challenge is to accurately depict what we do in a way that the viewers are going to, enjoy it, and that’s my biggest, task, is to make sure we put something out there that they’re going to really like.

MG: Can you talk a bit about how you were finally able to get access to the ruby slippers?
JM: I’m writing a book and my son asked me a question a couple years ago, and he goes, so, is there anything, in the book that is kind of like your weak spot? And I said, well, I’ll probably never have a pair of ruby slippers. And I didn’t think in my career I’d ever be able to sell a pair. I just thought it would just never happen. I didn’t think another pair would ever change hands. I was lucky that within six months I sold Debbie Reynolds’ Arabians for $700,000, then the, obviously the Samuels pair, six months after that. And it’s kind of surreal now looking back that two pairs have gone through my hands. It’s – they’re kind of like – it’s surreal because it’s hard to believe that these things A, came up for sale, and that you can own them. I mean it’s I personally think the most iconic prop in the world.

MG: With an item like the ruby slippers, at what point do they become too hard of a sell, despite their legacy?
JM: I just think its all timing. I mean, the other day somebody paid $100 million for Munch’s scream. I mean, I just think day to day, it’s what’s happening in the world. Buyers are in one mode then they’re in another mode. I just think a lot of it’s timing. I mean, I don’t think – there’s no value. When you buy $100 million painting, it’s like you can’t take it tomorrow and trade it for some building in Manhattan. You’re going to have to go through a whole process to sell it, right? I just think a lot of its timing, and a lot of people understanding the slippers I think because there are multiple pairs might have confused people. A lot of things go into it.

MG: So now that you’ve found your holy grail being, the ruby slippers, have you moved on to a new holy grail? Is there something new that you’re dying to find?
JM: Well, the ultimate thing, yes, there’s always another one. The ultimate thing would be Maria the robot from Metropolis. Now there’s all these legends behind that. In Metropolis, Maria burns, but there’s got to be more than one, so that would be like the next one. If you could surface that, it’d be pretty big.

MG: What’s the most valuable item you’ve ever sold?
The dress from The Seven Year Itch that we sold for Debbie Reynolds, which was $5 ½ million. So Debbie’s collection definitely was the highlight of anything we’ve ever sold. I mean, her material was the best that’s ever been put out in the market, and the prices – her first sale grossed $23 million, so for 500 items, pretty substantial.

MG: Can you tell us about your journey to Middle Earth featuring Sean Astin?
JM: Sean Astin is a neighbor. He lives close by, and a friend. We’re selling a large collection belonging to the Dryer family, and in that collection was this amazing map of Middle Earth. And I thought Sean, knowing his interest obviously in that part of the world, would enjoy seeing the map. So it was actually Tolkein’s copy, so he came by and we kind of had a little trip down memory lane and we learned interesting things. He went from the Shire to Mordor on what happened, and it was an interesting response, because he said well, we’re making this movie, Elijah and I figuring we’re going to have all this time together, a year and a half, and at the end we’re going to do this epic climax, throwing the ring in, in the mountain, and by the time we get there, we’ll be ready. And what happened was we were filming and there was a giant flood, and the set got wiped away, and they came in and said well, we’re going to film the climax instead, and this is very early in the process, and Sean’s like, I – we can’t do that. We’re not ready. And they’re like, you’re ready. So – and they literally – it was just like amazing insight into his world, his character. It was fascinating to meet him and kind of learn about that world.

MG: Is there anything that you own personally from a movie that you would never be willing to give up?
JM: Yes. I mean, I have a lot of things. Ihe thing I would never give up that’s from a television show, when my son was about six I had an auction and I had one of – Buck Rogers’ sidekick was Tweaky. He had a little robot, and I had a Tweaky in my auction and my son was about the same size. He was a little bit smaller, and (Felix Hiller) showed up, who wore the costume in the TV show, and we met (Felix), and my son thought this was the coolest thing in the world, you know? And we became friends with (Felix) and then (Felix) later sold my son – well, me for my son, his Tweaky costume with Theopolis around his neck. I’m looking at it. It’s six feet from my desk. It’s the holy grail of our family. It’s like the only thing – it’ll go to – he’ll take it to his grave. It’s like, it’s just such a sentimental thing among us, it’s like we’d never sell it. I collect things that are sentimentally important to me. It’s more about like I was lucky. I worked for ABC all of season six for “Lost”. I was in Hawaii during the entire shooting of the final season. I have such amazing memories of that production, but what I kept were things that were like, important to me, I mean, nothing of any value to anybody else, but to me it’s just all about the memory of being involved. That’s what I enjoy the most.

MG: It seems the horror genre is filled with some of the most hardcore collectors.
JM: Absolutely. I think horror is probably consistently always been number one with starting in 19 – the 20s, 1930, ’31, Frankenstein, Dracula. I think we’re infatuated with vampires, and I think obviously, look how popular they are now. I think the supernatural, ghosts and vampires and ghouls, just fascinates us. I think that the macabre – people just, like the dark side. They want to be a vampire, so I think that that’s just – it’s just – and because the material is dark in its creation, I think that it’s just kind of gravitates toward that world.

MG: I know you mentioned in the new episodes that – you said something about people are more after props than costume pieces. Why is that?
JM: Let’s see. Okay. Costumes are big and they’re a challenge to display, okay? So textiles are fragile, by nature, so they have to be – they can’t be in the sunlight. They have lots of things that will affect them over time if they’re not properly preserved or displayed. Props, pretty rugged. I mean they’re more manageable in size. They’re three dimensional. They’d kind of cooler looking. It’s just, people just want props. I mean, they’re just – there’s always a challenge with a costume, but when you get like the Maltese falcon and you hold it in your hands, it’s an object. the ruby slippers are an object. So those are the kinds of things – I just did the Captain America auction for Marvel, in April in Chicago. We had like the shields. They’re really cool because they’re objects. The costumes are nice, but when you get into like Thor’s hammer, Captain America’s shield or Iron Man’s helmet, they’re really cool.

MG: What other highlights can we expect from this upcoming season?
JM: This season’s going to be really fun. It’s the biggest things that I’m excited about is we used to be two back-to-back half hours. Now we’re one one-hour, so we’re able to tell much better stories, where in the past, we’d have to get in and out of a scene in three minutes. Now we’re able to invest like 10 or 12 minutes in a story, where you’re going to get a lot more information, a lot more access, learn a lot more about my world. I think it’s much better television, but American Horror Story – we have a great segment on The Hunger Games. I mean, The Hunger Games is going to be – we’ve got a great 12 minutes of Hunger Games. Whitney Houston, The Bodyguard – I mean, there’s going to be a lot of surprises, I mean, a lot of contemporary things, and we’re going to take you to places, Planet of the Apes, I mean, things that are just – there’s something for everybody. It is a really good diverse group. Vampires, Greg Cannon, who’s one of the judges of Face-Off, he did a Gary Oldman’s Bram Stoker Dracula. We sold his Dracula collection. Ve Neill is on the show. We sold her makeup collection, and she did some of the most important make-up appliances in Hollywood history, so a lot of cool things.

Interview wtih Papa Joe Aviance

Papa Joe Aviance is a dance music performer best known for performance with Lulu on the track “Last Night a DJ Saved My Life”. His current song is working its way up Billboard Dance charts. Media Mikes had a chance recently to speak with Papa Joe about his music and future plans.

Adam Lawton: What made you first want to get into music?
Papa Joe Aviance: I have been passionate about music all of my life. I grew up playing the violin and I was also in the marching band. Music is something I have been around all of my life. When I first experienced club music it was like church for me. Feeling the grooves and beats was very magical and I fell in love with it. Music in general is something that I just really love!

AL: How was it getting to work with Lulu on “Last Night a DJ Saved My Life”?
PJA: Amazing! I had danced to her tracks many times in the clubs and to have the opportunity to work with her was a blessing in disguise. My demo had been sent to Kult records and that day was the same day the originally rapper on the track was fired. They liked my voice and if would mind doing the rap on the track. Next thing I know its number 6 on the Billboard dance charts.

AL: When you were working on the track did you think it was going to be as big as it turned out?
PJA: Not at all. When it did get as big as it did I saw myself on the video and I knew I had to change my appearance. I knew I just couldn’t look like I did. I remember going to a local sports bar and hearing that song on the juke box. I just couldn’t believe it. From there I really got the motivation to lose a bunch of weight and was the next big thing to happen to me after that song was released.

AL: Can you tell us about your new track titled “Live For Life”?
PJA: I had Willy Sanjuan at a music conference about a year and a half ago. I was there promoting “Last Night a DJ Saved My Life”. He and I had been communicating through email and through the process of my weight loss I started writing this track. We recorded and submitted it and now it’s being promoted everywhere. I am really happy and proud of the track. This really is my very first solo track.

AL: How was it going into the studio by yourself for the first time?
PJA: It was fun and exciting. I love being in the studio and getting to brainstorm material. This new track is kind of about being passionate and doing what you love.

AL: Can you tell us about Papa Joe Network Productions?
PJA: That sort of came into play about 2 years ago. I had helped with some things on the “Last Night a DJ Saved My Life” video. During my weight loss journey I decided to document it. From there I started working on other projects besides my own. I like trying to help people get their message out.

AL: Do you have any other upcoming projects?
PJA: I am currently working with a few charities right now filming their events. Besides filming for those groups I am also involved heavily as a member. Next year I am planning to do a Walk Across America tour. I am planning to visit 10-15 cities to promote not only my new song but a healthy and active lifestyle. I plan to document the whole thing and submit it to festivals when it’s all done.

For more info on Papa Joe Aviance you can go to his website @ www.joejoenow.com and you can view some of his production work at www.youtube.com/papajoeaviance