MovieMikes’ “$#*! My Dad Says” Interview Series

In case you do not know “$#*! My Dad Says” started as a Twitter feed authored by Justin Halpern and it just consisted of quotes made by his father, Sam. Luckily, CBS was the first studio to produce a show based on a twitter feed and today we have one of the funniest shows new show on television.

The show stars William Shatner as Ed Goodson, Jonathan Sadowski as his son Henry, Will Sasso plays his other son, Vince and Nicole Sullivan plays Vince’s wife Bonnie. Ever since the pilot, the show has improved with each episode and that is rare for a show definitely a first year show.

Movie Mikes has been able to interview this show’s fantastic cast. You can check out the interviews below.  If you have not checked out this show, support it and let’s keep our fingers crossed for season two!!


Jonathan Sadowski

Official premise for show via Wikipedia:
“Ed is a very opinionated 72-year-old who has been divorced three times. His two adult sons, Henry and Vince, are accustomed to his unsolicited and often politically incorrect rants. When Henry, a struggling writer and blogger, can no longer afford his rent, he is forced to move back in with Ed, which creates new issues in their tricky father-son relationship. As weeks go by Henry is unable to find a job as a writer, mostly due to the lack of good material. He finally lands a job, when during his interview Ed interrupts with an irrational phone call that sparks the interest of the eccentric editor conducting the interview. Henry is ultimately hired, but is forced to continue living with Ed in order to be able to continue to write about his father’s unsolicited rants, hence the title “$#*! My Dad Says”.”

<p style=”text-align: center;”><strong>$#*! MY DAD SAYS CAST INTERVIEWS:</strong></p>
<table class=”tblInterviews” border=”0″ cellspacing=”0″ cellpadding=”0″ width=”100″>
<td><a href=”/2011/02/interview-with-jonathan-sadowski/”><img src=”/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/jonathan_sadowski.jpg” alt=”” hspace=”7″ width=”100″ height=”100″ /></a><a href=”/2011/02/interview-with-jonathan-sadowski/”>Jonathan Sadowski</a></div>
<td><a href=”/2011/02/interview-with-nicole-sullivan/”><img src=”/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/nicolesullivan1-300×269.jpg” alt=”” hspace=”7″ width=”100″ height=”100″ /></a></p>
<div><a href=”/2011/02/interview-with-nicole-sullivan/”>Nicole Sullivan</a></div>
<td><a href=”/2011/02/interview-with-will-sasso/”><img src=”/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/will_sasso.jpg” alt=”” hspace=”7″ width=”100″ height=”100″ /></a></p>
<div><a href=”/2011/02/interview-with-will-sasso/”>Will Sasso</a></div>

Interview with Roddy Pipper

Roddy Piper aka “Hot Rod” started a pro wrestling career at the age of 15.  He would go on to become one of the biggest wrestling figures of the eighties and early nineties. During this time Roddy also began appearing in movies. Roddy’s role in John Carpenter’s “They Live” ushered in a new era of bubble gum chewing and ass kicking. Movie Mikes had a chance to talk with Roddy about his film and wrestling career as well as his up and coming one man stand up show.

Click here to purchase “They Live” DVD

Adam Lawton: What made you decide to bridge into acting from wrestling?
Roddy Piper: John Carpenter had expressed an interest in working with me as he was a big wrestling fan. John actually used to write for wrestling magazines. John had asked if he could have dinner with me prior to Wrestle Mania 3. I had no idea who he was and I was kind of busy with the 93,000 people who were waiting to see me fight, so I really wasn’t interested. We did however end up having dinner and even though the conversation was more “can you pass the butter” John asked me to star in his next film and I said sure. Can you pass some more roll’s (Laughs). Acting came the same way wrestling had. I didn’t know what wrestling was until I was in my first match. Once I got into the creative process of acting I really loved it.

AL: How was it working with John Carpenter on set?
RP: The shoot its self was extremely difficult. At that time, I was the first professional wrestler to star in a major motion picture. I seemed to get a lot of jealously from the movie industry and I think John got torn in the middle of all that. I still don’t really understand it to this day. I think they thought I was just another jock trying to make a movie. I was very sincere about what I was doing. I had taken some acting classes and I took my work very serious and with a lot of respect. I think in the long run that paid off. The one thing that sticks out is that John had wanted the longest fight scene in cinema history. He matches me up with Keith David who is a wonderful man but he’s like a 220lbs. dancer who hits like Larry Holmes and doesn’t even know it. We worked for about three weeks prior to that scene being shot and we didn’t use any stuntmen, so it was much more demanding. That scene which, I think is still the longest in cinema history.  It was voted one of the top film fights in history. The fight is between two friends and it really revolutionized the idea of the fight.  In order to fit the film, there were a couple points in the fight which showed that it was actually a fight between two friends making it different.

AL: How did you get involved with “Always Sunny in Philadelphia”?
RP: (Laughs) They are great people. I received a call by one of the people involved with the show.   They wanted to know if I would be interested in being on the show and playing a wrestling character. I think they had said that Kevin Nash had also been contacted about the role, so I went down and met with the casting people. I saw the script and ended up taking the role. It was really fun and they allowed me to improvise a couple of my lines which was great. They are really great people!

AL: How was it working with Danny De Vito?
RP: I actually had met Danny at Wrestle Mania 1 and you can see this meeting on YouTube. (Laughs) I didn’t even remember this at first but I went back and looked at me bursting into this interview Danny was having. This was the first thing he reminded me of when I met him on set. He did it though in the most kind way. He is a wonderful guy.

AL: If you had to pick one of your film roles as a favorite what would it be?
RP: I haven’t done it yet. I really don’t think that I have done a role in the movie industry that I have liked yet. I am very tough to please. I would love to remake something along the lines of “Boy’s Town” or “Of Mice and Men.” I always am cast in the “meat head” type of role or action hero. That’s ok and I am very grateful but it doesn’t allow me to show the depth of what I can do. When I was doing “Always Sunny in Philadelphia” during one of the scenes I asked to add a line.  I threw in something about my characters family that was very simple but after they yelled cut everyone got real quiet and they noticed a real dark moment for my character. There are a lot of things that haven’t been tapped for the artist Roddy Piper. I want to be able to do the art. Recently I have been doing stand-up at a few clubs in Los Angeles. It’s actually more story telling that comedy however it’s a different form of art for me as is wrestling and acting. I just really want to do something opposite of the tough guy.

AL: How did the idea for “Piper’s Pit” come about?
RP: I was in a bar in St. Louis with Vince McMahon and during that time the wrestling talent was so great.  There was so much of it that everyone was competing against each other to show off. They did this by usually wrestling some guy named Pete the Flower Guy or something like that (Laughs) who was a part time wrestler and they would just destroy the guy. We were watching this on TV at this bar and I told Vince to give me a bow tie, a microphone and five weeks and if at the end of the five weeks the idea didn’t work I would leave. I didn’t even have a concept or anything just the bow tie and a microphone. So the next TV event, I showed up for they had the “Piper’s Pit” set all ready to go. No one told me it was going to be there. I didn’t even know what guests were going to be on until the last minute. My first guest was a guy by the name of Frankie Williams. Frankie was one of the guys that was always getting beat and also was the only Puerto Rican guy I knew who had freckles (Laughs). I still at this point had no idea what to do but I knew I had to do something. I decided to ask Frankie where he was from. He says in the thickest Puerto Rican accent that he’s from Columbus, Ohio. We were off and running after that. That is also when the phrase “Just when you think you have got all the answers…I change the questions” started also.  Everything was completely unscripted and we just went with it.

AL: Any great story from when you were on the road with wrestling?
RP: (Laughs) Good Lord! I used to hang around a lot with Rick Flair to my detriment (Laughs). I love that guy but he always seemed to have a tough time keeping his clothes on. I don’t know why but every time we got on an airplane we would no sooner take off and Rick would go to the bathroom and come out wearing only his nature boy robe! The next thing you know he is serving drinks to the other passengers and dancing while certain things were showing! One time the plane made an emergency landing because of this and I was the one who ended up getting arrested! He did this on every plane and always asked me what I thought. I said “I don’t care Rick! I am just trying to stay out of jail.”

AL: Do you have any upcoming projects we can be watching for?
RP: I was approached recently to do a reality show. I am not sure right now if I want to do television or cinema. I have also been working the past six months or so on doing a Broadway show. It’s going to be a one man show. There has been a lot of interest in it. I would also like to take it on the road and tour around the world.

Click here to purchase “They Live” DVD

For up to date info on Roddy you can go to

Interview with Tamala Jones

Tamala Jones has appeared in numerous movies and television series but is known best for her role of Lanie Parish on ABC’s hit show “Castle”. Tamala is one of the sweetest people I have ever interviewed and even gave me some killer cold tips.  Movie Mikes was lucky enough to chat with her during busy shooting schedule about her character and how much she loves working on “Castle”.

Click here to purchase “Castle” DVD’s & Blu-Ray’s

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about how you got the role of Lanie Parish on “Castle”?
Tamala Jones: I was definitely looking for a change in the type of roles I was taking and my manager and agent agreed with me. We decided I should start stepping outside of the box and start auditioning for characters that maybe aren’t necessarily African American written. We met with the casting director of “Castle” and they agreed for me to come and audition for Lanie. I was literally was the only African American actress there. It was one line to delivers [laughs] and I got it. The role was only for a guest star with a possible recurring part. when the show got picked up, it was right in the middle of pilot season.  I was auditioning and testing for a different pilot at the time. My team called ABC and asked them if they wanted to bringing me back on the show. They called back and offered me a role as a series regular.

MG: Tell us about your experience playing that character?
TJ: I have a great time playing Lanie. It is very challenging to learn all the medical terminology, which I love though. I have a really great time learning them as well as learning her. I also am lucky to be able to hang out with everyone on the set. I love the people I work with.

MG: Tell us about your new relationship on the show with co-star Jon Huertas?
TJ: Jon is the one that made this thing happen.  The whole Lanie and Esposito thing is his idea. He has been campaigning this since last season and it finally happened. We were just shooting the ‘morning after’ scene and Jon was just so nervous. He wanted to know if I was covered up properly and if I was comfortable. He was the one with the skimpier outfit than I was. I had underwear on and pasties covering. Jon’s butt cheeks where out [laughs]. He was a little nervous but we had a good time… a lot of laughs. They are going to play with the relationship a little bit here and there. They are not going to make it so strong, which is what I like about the writers and producers on “Castle”. They will give you something and then they’ll take it back a little bit. Then give you little bits at a time to keep you intrigued and wanting more. I think that is really smart. You will see little things here and there…a little slip up at work, just little stuff.

MG: What is it like working with such a great cast?
TJ: Oh my God. I have the best gift from God working on this show. I wasn’t supposed to be a season regular and now I am. I am surrounded by not just great actors but the crew, producers and the writers. We are all a really big family and we all love each other. You walk on that set and it just not work for us. We really are a unit. We do special things for each other all the time, not because we have to but because we want to. We worry about each other. I make cookies for them. It is such a great atmosphere to be apart of. I am humbly happy and totally blessed to be involved with these people.

MG: What has been your favorite episode to work on to date?
TJ: I love the Halloween episode. That is my favorite. I loved how there was so many things going on in that episode. We all ended up at Castle’s lot partying and the one person we didn’t think was going to dress up, she threw you for a loop. It was brilliant. The episode touched on the addiction on vampires and werewolves that people are having. It goes along with the whole “True Blood” and “Twilight” scene. It was fun to be a part of that for a quick second.

MG: How does working on “Castle” compare for you than working on other TV series for you?
TJ: I had fun working on my other shows but they were half hour comedies. I grew up doing that,like working on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” as a guest star. Most of the series regular shows I have had were mostly half hour comedies. This show was really a challenge for me to come in and work these long hours like we are shooting a movie year round. Trying to get this medical stuff down and really be married to the work. But…I really liked it a lot. I felt like I could do it in my sleep. I was working but I was actually learning things. I felt like I was in medical school with the all information I am gaining. It is great to always learn new things. I am really having a great time with “Castle”. That is the different between the other shows and “Castle”, I wasn’t learning anything. I was just going to work and having fun it was a party. Still here I am having fun but there is a serious time for our show as well as the laughter. It really helps us achieve greatness and it is a great feeling. I hope this show last a very long time.

MG: “Castle” just got renewed for season 4, are you shocked that the show is still going so strong season after season?
TJ: That was the best news ever. Usually you have to wait till March, April, May or even June to find out if you are coming back. We went in that day [screaming] “Ahhhh we’re coming back”. I just love it. I am not shocked at all. I am just happy I am stuck right in the middle of it. They love us on ABC and it is just a great feeling. When you hear me get excited it is real because I never take anything for granted.

Click here to purchase “Castle” DVD’s & Blu-Ray’s

Interview with Callan McAuliffe

Callan McAuliffe is an Australian actor who recently had his American film debut in the Rob Reiner directed “Flipped”.  Movie Mikes had a chance to talk with Callan to discuss his role and what he has planned for the future.

Click here to purchase “Flipped” merchandise

Mike Gencarelli: “Flipped” is your American film debut, tell us about your experience?
Callan McAuliffe: It is awesome to be in an American film. I have done things in Australia, like commercials and things like that but I have never been in a feature film. It was also my first American audition which was insanely nerve wreaking. I did five auditions and they I auditioned with Madeline (Carroll). Rob (Reiner) thought I was right for the role. Originally people were saying that I shouldn’t do it because I am Australian and the money issue would have been tough, plus I didn’t have a visa. Rob really pushed though and tried to get me in the film. I thought it was amazing. As soon as I got on set it was a fantastic experience. Everyone was so fantastic. Rob Reiner knew exactly what he wanted. He knew how to tell you if it was bad and if it was good. I think he also has most of the same people working with him on all of his films. Everyone knew each other really well. Because the set had a lot of kids, Rob tried to keep it as kid friendly as possible. Rob has this swear jar and you had pay $20 dollars if you swore on set. We sort of kept the swearing on the set to a minimum. I ended up owing nothing.  I did my swearing off set [laughs]. I think I was owed a couple of hundred dollars though for not telling on people for when they swore in front of me. If they swore in front of me I said “Can I have $10 dollars of the $20 dollars you are not going to put in the pot and I won’t tell on you.”

Mike Gencarelli: How did you get the role of Bryce Loski in “Flipped”?
Callan McAuliffe: Like I said, I did some acting prior. I was recommended to my American manager, Nicholas Bogner at Affirmative Entertainment.  Before I met him, he sent me an audition for “Flipped”. I taped it and sent it back over. We didn’t think think a lot of about it.  I figured it was my first American audition. Then we went over to meet him and found out I got a call back. So while I was there I did like four more auditions for the film.

Mike Gencarelli: Where you a fan of the novel by Wendlin Van Draanen?
Callan McAuliffe: I never heard of it or read it prior to getting the role. Out of respect I actually did read it. I really enjoyed it. It is not the particular genre that I like but it was really good. I read the novel and the script at the same time while on the plane heading to the set.

MG: What is your particular genre?
CM: I am really in fiction and the sort of stuff that doesn’t happen in real life. You can experience things in real life. I like the fantasy, sci-fi and that sort of stuff.

MG: How did you feel the character was between the book and the film?
CM: They had written the character very close to how he was in the book. Everything stayed pretty true. There are always going to be things different for example in the “Harry Potter” and “The Lord of the Rings” series. You can’t always translate everything. I think that due to the simplicity of the novel and the film, they were able to able to translate most of the stuff. It stays really true to the book.

MG: Can you tell us about your role in “I Am Number Role”?
CM: I cannot say too much but I can say my name in Sam and it is an “alien-ey” action film. It is a good contrast from “Flipped”. It is directed by D.J. Caruso. Steven Spielberg and Michael Bay are producers, which is fantastic. It was a thrill to work on. It’s also got Alex Pettyfer from “Strombreaker” and “Beastly”. It’s got Teresa Palmer who is also Australian, so that is awesome. So its got two Australians in the film. It’s also has Dianna Agron and Timothy Olyphant. Really great line of cast.

MG: How was it like working with Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg on your second role?
CM: I have met either of them yet [eagerly]. They are doing all the cool stuff behind the scenes. D.J. Caruso was really cool to work with.

Click here to purchase “Flipped” merchandise

Teaser for our Exclusive Video Interview with Drew Struzan

We are obviously huge fans of movies here at but the directors, actors and other crew always get the recognition. But how about the guy that creates those amazing posters. MovieMikes had a chance to schedule an exclusive sit down interview with legendary poster artist Drew Struzan to discuss his work, his upcoming documentary and his new book.

Not only did we get to interview Drew Struzan, we filmed the whole thing, thanks to our West Side correspondent, Jon Donahue and his crew. While we are hard at work editing and polishing up the interview. Check out our teaser to get a taste of what is to come. The interview will be posted on Sept.14th, which is also the launch of Drew Struzan’s new book.

Also check out Drew Struzan’s website to see some of his amazing work.

You can also click here to purchase Drew’s new book “The Art of Drew Struzan” and his other books.

Interview with Louis Herthum

Louis Herthum plays the protective father in this summer’s horror film “The Last Exorcism”.  Louis is also currently co-starring in the television show “The Gates”.  Movie Mikes has the chance to talk with Louis about his role in “The Last Exorcism” and his experience during the filming.

Click here to purchase “The Last Exorcism” DVD or Blu-Ray

Mike Gencarelli: Tell me about your role in “The Last Exorcism”?
Louis Herthum: The character I play is a father whose lost his wife a couple of years before the film takes place.  He notices some very peculiar behavior coming from his daughter.  He contacts this reverend who, he understands, performs Exorcisms.  My character feels that is what is needed to deal with his daughter.  He’s a fundamentalist Christian.  He doesn’t believe that much in the outside world.  Ever since his wife died he’s been home schooling his daughter.  He’s very protective of her.  He doesn’t believe in modern medicine because eight doctors failed to save his wife.  I don’t want to give too much away but when the reverend comes out he tells him that she needs to have an Exorcism.  My character is pretty persistent in the treatment he thinks his daughter needs and it tends to go against what the reverend thinks.  He’s a pretty stern guy but it’s all about his daughter.  It’s all about his daughter and the saving of her soul.

Mike Gencarelli: When got the role how did you prepare? Did you look at other films that dealt with Exorcism?
Louis Herthum: Well, I had seen “The Exorcist” in high school.  And it really freaked me out because I was born and raised a Catholic.  You know, in schools they taught us about God and the Devil.  So seeing the Exorcism scene in “The Exorcist”…it freaked me out!  But it really got me interested in the subject.  I read the book after I saw the movie.  And I started reading about other Exorcisms.  And then one night I had a dream that I was possessed and it freaked me out so bad that I quit reading the books.  So I didn’t do a lot of research as far as watching other films but I did do a lot of research about the type of character I was playing.  Fundamentalist.  Christian.  Blinders.  Bible.  And I don’t want to make that sound derogatory.  Plus I had some friends who were very religious and I went and talked to them.  And I would jot down passages in the Bible that I thought were pertinent to the film. So the majority of my research was about the type of person I was playing.

Mike Gencarelli: Was there anything spooky or creepy happenings during the shoot?
Louis Herthum: The creepiest thing that happened to me was…the girl who plays my daughter was not on the set that day and I was in the back yard getting ready to shoot a scene that they would film through the house window.  All of the crew was inside on the lower floor.  The upstairs was empty and dark but I could see a faint light coming through a window.  The curtains were slightly sheer and open in the middle.  I had a walkie talkie so they could cue me when they were rolling and I looked up towards the window and I saw a figure in the window.  I’ve got goosebumps now just saying this.  And it looked like the girl who was playing my daughter.  She had on a bloody dress and it was moving eerily and dancing and I was like “what the f*** is this?” (laughs)  So I get on the walkie to our head production assistant who we called Darkness.  I’m like, “Darkness, go to two” So he goes upstairs and I ask him who is upstairs?  He asks me what I mean and I ask again “Who is upstairs?”  “Nobody.”  I tell him that SOMEBODY is upstairs in the window dancing in Nell’s dress and he says, “I don’t think so.”  So I tell him to get outside.  And when he comes out he tells me that he couldn’t tell me on the radio that they were getting ready to pull a prank on another actor who had a scene upstairs.  It was one of the costume girls in the dress.  The scene had the actor go upstairs and look out the window to see me outside.  So the girl pops out dressed like Nell and they scare the hell out of him!  That was the creepiest moment for me because I didn’t know they were doing it.  But other than that there wasn’t a lot of scary stuff happening.

MG: Did the movie actually scare you when you saw it at LA Film Festival?
LH: Yeah it did.  In all honesty it did.  When you’re making a film, as an actor you have such a completely different viewpoint.  You’re doing your takes but there’s no music.  No editing.  The other elements that come into play are not there.  I jumped several times because I had no idea what was coming.  And that’s a credit to Daniel (Stamm) and his editors.  And of course the people around me are jumping and screaming as well so that adds to your reaction.  There were certainly some surprises there.

MG: “The Last Exorcism” has received a PG-13 rating which usually sets off a red flag for horror fans.  How do you feel about this?
LH: I’ll be honest with you, I’m not a huge horror fan.  But being an actor who has done a few…in fact this will be the biggest one…it doesn’t concern me.  In fact, I was talking to Eli Roth about it and he felt it would be better for us because we’ll get a wider group of people that can see it.  Plus, we can advertise it on television before 11:00.  Plus we may pull in some fundamentalist Christians, who I think if they see the film they might actually like it the way they liked “The Exorcist.”  And for the same reasons.  I was reading some comments on the Internet and I found out that the people who were worried about it, after seeing the screening, found they had nothing to worry about at all.  To me, it’s such a smart movie…much different than your typical slasher horror movie.  I don’t think it’s going to be an issue at all.  In fact I read a comment from someone who had seen the film but didn’t know we had already gotten the PG 13 rating.  And they wrote “I hear they’re going after a PG 13 rating.  I doubt they’ll get it.”  And this was after seeing the film.

MG: Did you get a chance to work with Eli Roth during the shoot?
LH: I didn’t meet Eli during the shoot because he was busy shooting “Inglorious Basterds” so I didn’t meet him until post production.  I can’t say enough about that guy.  They type of genre’ he does…horror…extremely violent…this guy is extremely intelligent.  He’s the nicest guy in the world.  About as nice and personable as anyone you’ll meet.  I mean if you met him and didn’t know who he was you’d think, “wow, what a cool guy.”  He has a very clear vision about this genre’.  Not only the “Hostel” films and “Cabin Fever.”  He was very hands on in the making of this film and the final product.  I believe…I truly believe that he has created something different in this genre’.  He’s a really, really intelligent and smart guy.  I think he will continue to surprise us in the years to come.  Because it’s so clear that he’s very excited about this business.  It’s such a joy to see him get excited about this.

Click here to purchase “The Last Exorcism” DVD or Blu-Ray

MG: Tell about what you got planned for the future?
LH: Well, currently I’m a recurring character on a TV show called “The Gates.”  It’s exciting and fun.  It’s a thrill to be a part of the whole vampire world, though I play a werewolf.  Right now I’m back in L.A.  I’ve been working a lot.  I’ve got a film coming out called “Seconds Apart.”  It’s a part of the “After Dark” series.  Right now I’m taking meetings.  I’ve been offered a role in a film that I haven’t read yet where I’ll play a serial killer.  I’m not sure if I want to go there (laughs).  But life’s good.  I’m keeping busy.

Interview with Iris Bahr

Iris Bahr is featured in this summer’s horror film “The Last Exorcism”.  She plays a filmmaker by the name of Iris.  Iris also has her own TV series “Svetlana” on HDNet and has written two books.  Movie Mikes had a chance to talk with Iris about her role in “The Last Exorcism” and her amazing career to date.

Click here to purchase “The Last Exorcism” DVD or Blu-Ray

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about your role in “The Last Exorcism”, you play the character Iris coincidentally?
Iris Bahr: I’m a documentary filmmaker that has been hired by Cotton Marcus to follow him around and depict his work. I don’t want to give away too much! I always try to answer in little snippets if it’s related to plot.

Mike Gencarelli: What was it like working on the set of the movie anything creepy or spooky happen like the cursed set of 1973’s “The Exorcist”?
Iris Bahr: We shot on this really old plantation so there is definitely a vibe in that space that can’t be denied to be honest with you. We had really long night shoots which were actually pretty creepy. This is unrelated to the filming but at one point the caretaker of the place had a farm nearby and one night at midnight he tells us he has a cow that’s about to give birth. If it doesn’t give birth it’s going to die. So I went and assisted in the calf’s birth, which was pretty amazing. When it was over he looked at me and said “in all my years I’ve never seen a city girl stand in shit so deep!” (laughs) I was standing right near the cows butt and when a cow gives birth a lot of stuff comes out that’s not really related to the birth. It was a pretty amazing experience. We got the calf out and later on they named the calf “Cotton.”

Mike Gencarelli: “The Last Exorcism” has received a PG-13 rating, instantly that sets off a red flag for horror fans, how do you feel about this?
Iris Bahr: I’ve got to be totally honest, I haven’t seen the final product yet. But I think the best thrillers…the best horror films…are the ones where you don’t have to see a lot to get freaked out. That’s the mastery of it. The suspense…the tension…what you’re not seeing. Of course who knows how the M.P.A.A. rates movies. There could be a lot of stuff on screen and you’ll ask yourself “how did this get a PG 13 rating?” You never know. But I’ve talked to people who’ve seen it and they say it’s super, super scary.

MG: How do you think fans are going to react to this movie? Is it going to scare the crap out of them?
IB: If I got scared filming it they’re going to be scared seeing it.

MG: Tell us about “The Poughkeepsie Tapes“.
IB: It’s a psychological thriller that’s extremely disturbing. I saw it at the Tribeca Film Festival. I met the filmmakers at a film festival in Boulder, Colorado where we both had films being shown. The movie is extremely terrifying. It concerns tapes that are found after the fact in a big investigation…a very cinema verite’kind of thing that’s done really, really well.

MG: Tell me about your TV series “Svetlana” which recently premiered? What was it like to take on so many roles?
IB: Svetlana is a character I created a few years ago. She’s a Russian whore “slash” political consultant. She’s a whore to some celebrities and political figures. I shot the pilot on my own dime. Then Mark Cuban saw it and bought twelve episodes. So I wrote, directed, starred in and executive produced twelve episodes, each one about 22 minutes long. And we’ve got some amazing actors in it…Thomas Lennon from “Reno 911”… Richard Schiff from “The West Wing”…we really put an amazing cast together. And because it’s a comedy, I play the three daughters who work for me who are also prostitutes in the brothel, which is called “The Saint Petersburg House of Discreet Pleasure.” Not to toot my own horn here but it’s pretty freakin’ funny! It’s more about the family life with a little bit about the customers who come in. It’s about how the Russian madame handles daily life. Her husband is kind of a loser. It will air on HD Net every Thursday and Saturday at midnight on the east coast, 9 p.m. Pacific. There’s a PG rated version and an MA (mature). I always recommend that people see the MA one. And if you want to catch the pilot it’s on the Funny or Die web site. It’s been a great experience.

MG: Besides acting, you really have an amazing back story can you tell us a little about it?
IB: I was born in the Bronx. I lived there until I was about twelve. And then I moved to Israel with my mom. I did two years in the army. Then I traveled through Asia for six months. I was still a virgin and I attempted to lose my virginity in Asia. And that’s what my first book is about. It’s a memoir called “Dork Whore.” I just wrote a follow up called “Sluts in Fleece” which is coming out in Germany. My books are best sellers in Germany but I can’t answer why. I’m like David Hasselhoff, only I’m a woman who’s Jewish. I mean I’ve sold a million copies there…me and Harry Potter are on the best seller list on Amazon. They commissioned the second book and I wrote it for them. It’s coming out in German and then hopefully it will sell here. And we’re also making “Dork Whore” into a movie. I had a one woman show in New York that ran for a couple of years. It actually won the Lucille Lortel Award for Best Solo Show. I play eleven characters who gather in a café in Tel Aviv right before a suicide bomber enters. Each character dies in stage in front of you so you go through the explosion eleven times. It’s really an intense show. It has a lot of humor in it too. It did really well. I traveled with it all over the world and it had an amazing run.

MG: What else do you have lined up for the future?
I have a film called “Fair Game,” which is directed by Doug Liman who did “The Bourne Identity” and “Swingers.” It’s the story of Valerie Plame, the C.I.A. agent who was outed. It stars Naomi Watts and Sean Penn and I have a small role in it. It’s a film about the disintegration of their marriage after the scandal as opposed to a political thriller.

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Interview with The Chiodo Bros.

Stephen, Charles & Edward Chiodo make up the The Chiodo Bros., they are most known for their work on “Killer Klowns from Outer Space” but have also worked on many other projects that you have seen like “Elf” and “Team America: World Police”. Movie Mikes spoke to the brothers about their career and of course the long awaited sequel to “Killer Klowns”.

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Mike Gencarelli: How did you guys end up starting working together and starting Chiodo Bros. Productions? Have you always wanted to do it?
Charlie Chiodo: Before we had a movie camera, we used to watch monster movies from the 50’s. As brothers we always played together. We used to play with our toy dinosaurs, and spent all of our time playing with puppets, doing puppet shows and planning monster movies. There were no production manuals on how to do it. We read through Famous Monsters magazine and found out about people like Ray Harryhausen and Willis O’Brien and how they did animation. We figured out they filmed it one frame at a time but the 8mm camera our parents bought us didn’t have a one frame adjustment. We used that to make our first movies. We were basically self taught and learned through trial and error. When we moved to Los Angeles we built our facility and had a real shop to work in. Our passion was to build things, create characters and tell new and exciting stories. That’s what we’ve been doing for nearly 30 years.

Mike Gencarelli: Where did you guys get the idea for “Killer Klowns from Outer Space”?
Stephen Chiodo: We were driving the car at night down a long dark road and I was trying to come up with the scariest thing I could imagine. I thought about looking out the window and seeing a car pull up along side us with a smiling clown leering at me. I thought that was the most terrifying image. Then we thought, what if the clown wasn’t in a car? If it was floating along with us and wasn’t in a car, then the clown must be from outer space.

Mike Gencarelli: I recently spoke with Grant Cramer and he discussed “Killer Klowns 2” with me, what can you tell us about it?
Edward Chiodo: They let him out of prison? [Laughs]
Stephen Chiodo: What he said is true. We have all put together a screenplay and we are out there shopping it right now. After all these years we have been trying to decide whether to make a sequel or a remake. We settled on a combination of both.
Edward Chiodo: It is a “re-quel”.

MG: How do you feel about the fans devotion to the “Killer Klowns” after over 20 years?
Charlie: I didn’t know that there was such a large a fan base out there and that the film would have the effect that it has had. We had no idea that little film we made would reach such a large audience.
Stephen: I am really surprised. I think we tapped in to some kind of nerve within the audience. I am really pleased that we created a new monster icon. You have Frankenstein, Wolf Man and the classic monsters. We forever have changed the image of clowns. We made them scary and from out of this world.

MG: Stephen, after “Killer Klowns” what was the reason why you haven’t directed another feature film?
Stephen: Yeah, my career really went into the toilet after that movie. [Laughs] We had a couple of projects in the works after Klowns but none of them took off. Since then I have directed some pilots for Showtime, CNN and a lot of television. I directed some episodes for “Land of the Lost” and produced and directed our “Sea Monkeys” TV show. I am afraid most of the feature films concepts we came up with haven’t been able to get off the ground.
Charlie: That is really what is interesting about the industry it doesn’t matter how large your fan base is. What matters is how well it did at the box office and how well the merchandising did. Financing the next project is based on how much money was generated by the last project.
Stephen: I think if Transworld was behind the property and marketed it better we would have seen a “Killer Klowns 2” and a much more vibrant producing/directing career from the Chiodo Bros. We gave them a great franchise and they blew it.
Edward: We were still happy we were able to make our first movie. It put us on the map and helped start our own production company.

MG: Tell me about some of the other projects you have worked on?
Edward: One my favorites was “Team America: World Police,” working with Matt and Trey was a great experience. It was a great film.
Stephen: We also really enjoyed our experience with Jon Favreau on “Elf.” It was fun creating the stop-motion characters and being part of a “classic” holiday feature.

MG: Out of all the areas you focus? on, stop-motion, puppetry and props & miniatures, do each of you guys have a favorite role?
Stephen: We don’t really focus on one technique in particular. We create characters bring them to life with whatever means are best. Sometimes we use stop-motion, sometimes masks, make-up, puppets or animatronic costumes. Sometimes it might even be CGI. We chose the best technique to make a character come alive.

MG: How do you feel about how CGI has taken over in films?
Charlie: We work with it. We take our traditional techniques, add the digital to it and have the best of both worlds.
Stephen: The computer is a great tool. We shoot our animation digitally now and use computers to put it all together in post. For us it’s all about traditional stop motion done with some of the new tools. I think audiences are now leaning toward the more tangible look and feel of traditional puppet and classic rubber effects.
Edward: If you really embrace the technology, it is a good way to bring characters to life. We still prefer something tangible on set, which the actors can interact with.

MG: Tell me about your work on the upcoming film “Dinner with Schmucks”?
Stephen: Yep, we worked with Jay Roach on “Dinner with Schmucks” which comes out in July. We are doing specialty props, dioramas and set pieces.

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Interview with Tom Woodruff Jr.

Tom Woodruff Jr. is one of the founding members of Amalgamated Dynamics along with Alec Gillis. He is an Academy Award Winner for Best Visual Effects in 1992’s “Death Becomes Her”. He has worked films ranging from “Aliens” to “The Santa Clause” to “Spider-Man” and pretty much every other movie made in the last 25 years. Movie Mikes has the chance to talk to Tom to discuss his career and what is in store for the future.

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Mike Gencarelli: Your first movie was with Charles Band’s Full Moon, called Metalstorm 3D? Tell me about that experience?
Tom Woodruff Jr.: Yes that is right.  Everything about it was great for me because it was my first film.  I was finally able to do what I set out to do since I was a kid.  I moved across country from Pennsylvania to Los Angeles.  It was a lot of hard work but it was so cool, finally being able to work in an effects shop.  Back then everything we did in this field was all encompassing.   There wasn’t the degree of specialization that we have today for example.  I went in and by the end of “Metalstorm”, I was able to do mold work, sculpting, apply prosthetic makeup, foam work, on set color application work and puppetry.  In that short period of time, I was turned on to so many different aspects of what we do in this field.  It was an incredible working experience packed into a very short period of time.

Mike Gencarelli: How did you actually get involved with SFX and makeup?
Tom Woodruff Jr.: When I moved to Los Angeles, I had a small portfolio of things I had done on my own like some masks, models, and sculptures.  When I got out to Los Angeles, I knew a couple of people.  I had corresponded quite a bit with John Chambers back when I was a kid.  I was such a “Planet of the Apes” fan.  During High School, in the summer I would travel out to Los Angeles and meet people.  John Chambers would take me around to meet people like Stan Winston and Tom Burman and a bunch of other established makeup artists.  I was at least armed with a few names and numbers who I could show my work and try and get work.  I just kept at it for a better part of six months.

Mike Gencarelli: You’ve worked on the Alien series, what was your favorite film to work on?
Tom Woodruff Jr.: I think my favorite was “Alien 3” for a combination of reasons.  That was an early film that Alec (Gillis) and I did on own.  On “Aliens”, the Cameron movie, we were part of Stan Winston’s team.  Stan was amazing and inspiring to work with but with “Alien 3” it was our own show.  It was also the first time I wore the Alien costume.  We really had a chance to work on screen a lot and work quite a bit with Sigourney (Weaver) in the scenes.  Just being around David Fincher was a huge experience just to see that level of filmmaking from a guy that young.  It was also a bit intimidating because David was way ahead of the curve and if anyone was going to find something that wasn’t working it would be him.

MG: What do you enjoy more working in the film or on the film?
TW: I honestly do not separate it too much because to me it is one continuous process.  Alex and I really take pride in that we design and build these characters.  We also follow them through to the very end in which we are on set, either me inside of the creature and Alex outside puppeteering or both of us outside.  It becomes a very personal statement in these characters that we build that we hold on so much of them until the very end.

MG: You played some of the most memorable creatures, The Gilman in “The Monster Squad”, “Pumpkinhead” to name a few, what has been your favorite?
TW: I go back and forth, I love the Alien but it really wasn’t my character.  Pumpkinhead was great because that was a whole new thing.  We got to design and create “Pumpkinhead” and Stan was directing.  We were on set and it was on the best experiences I’ve ever had.  We were so integrated with the project.  I still think though my favorite is the Gilman from “The Monster Squad”.  As a kid, I was always such a fan of the old Universal creature movies.  Even the lousy ones like “The Creature Walks Among Us”, it is still cool.  The only thing that would have made it better was if we did a 1:1 copy of what the original creature looked like in the 50’s for “The Monster Squad”.  The creature we had was so cool though.  It was such a great character to play.  The scenes of me coming out of the water and the ones in the middle of town were great.

MGi: How do you feel with all the CGI taking over?  Do you think creatures will be around forever?
TW: That is a question that has been going on since the early 90’s, mostly around the time of the first “Jurassic Park”.  I feel like the question has been answered many times over the years.  The birth of the CG realm had the effect of bringing us more work for quite a few years.  It was making possible the idea of being able to do movies like “Jurassic Park” or “Starship Troopers”.  Not that it couldn’t be done without CGI but the advent of CGI (and good CGI) made it more of a good consideration for studios to embark on big projects like these.  But ironically, I am not slamming CG in any way I am trying to restore balance.  So many people think that, “Oh CGI, that is what made “Jurassic Park” come to life”.  That is not entirely true, if you look at the screen time between digital dinosaurs and Stan Winston’s animatronic dinosaurs.  The animatronic dinosaurs have more screen time.  They also have as much of an impact as the CGI.  The CGI was new, sweet and sexy.  It shows up on the cover of Newsweek and became the buzz word.  Hollywood functions as an industry on very short term descriptive phrases for what people do in movies.  We have to make sure that people do not forget how important practical effects are.  What we have seen most recently is a much wider embrace and return to old school effects or some people say organic effects.

MG: Tell me about the upcoming remake of “The Thing” and your involvement?
TW: The only thing I can tell you is, YES we are involved.  We get to do some great creature still and it is a huge challenge.  John Carpenter’s movie was such a groundbreaking film in the world of creature effects.  At the time practical creature effects was really all there was.  It is a huge act to follow and it is a really challenging.  It is further magnified that we have so precious little time to be able to design and create what needs to get done for the screen.  We looked it up and Rob (Bottin) from the original had a year and a half to conceive and create the effects.  We have about four and a half months in comparison.  It has been non-stop, going crazy in the shop.

MG: What else do you have planned for the future?
TW: “The Thing” is our main priority right now but like I said it has been non-stop since we started.  We are concentrating all of our energy in this project.  It is keeping us hustling.

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Interview with Doug Jones

Doug Jones is one of the busiest actor’s in Hollywood. He has played so many amazing characters just over the last few years such as Abe Sabien in “Hellboy” series, Silver Surfer in “Fantastic Four 2”, Fauno/Pale Guy in “Pan Labyrinth”. Movie Mikes was able to ask Doug a few questions, thanks to Derek Maki at Coolwaters Productions for setting that up.

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Mike Gencarelli: Your characters are usually covered in makeup or costume, i.e. Abe Sapien in the “Hellboy” series or as Fauno/Pale Man in “Pan’s Labryinth”, what is the most challenging part of that?
Doug Jones: Exactly what you might think it would be …. Extra heat, weight, and a long time in the make-up application every day, making my days very long and something special to endure as an athlete as well as an actor. But the happy side of all this is that I have worked with the most brilliant and talented make-up artists in the world, and I’ve been able to play such beautiful characters from other worlds that I could never portray with my own face.

Mike Gencarelli: Throughout all the characters you have played, which one is your favorite?
Doug Jones: I love all my characters, as I get to know them very well before the camera rolls. Pan, the Faun from “Pan’s Labyrinth” is right up there at the top, along with the stoic and powerful Silver Surfer, but I’d have to say my very favorite character thus far is Abe Sapien from the “Hellboy” movies. I love him with all of his intellect, his innocent charm, his clairvoyant power, and his fantasy fish-man hybrid beauty.

Mike Gencarelli: You’ve done a bit of television work and scored an Emmy nomination for “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, how do you feel TV differs from movies? Which do you enjoy more?
Doug Jones: Both are fun and challenging in their own ways, but I think I prefer feature films, simply because they usually have more time and money than the shorter production schedules of a TV episode. This gives the director and actors a little more freedom to create, even though Joss Whedon pulled off an enormous creative feat with that ‘Hush’ episode of “Buffy.”

MG: When playing all these great characters, do you ever find yourself improving your role, or do you just go with the flow?
DJ: It is any actor’s job to search out every possibility in playing a character. Just coasting with the flow would do your character a mis-service. So yes, especially if something doesn’t feel quite right, I find myself often wanting one more take when filming, just to uncover what’s been missing. A good director always helps us find these moments, too, and I have been so blessed to work with some of the top directors in the movie business.

MG: Tell me a little about your upcoming French film, “Gainsbourg (Vie héroïque)”, What type of character do you play?
DJ: I play a fantasy character in this real-life biography of famous French singer/songwriter Serge Gainsbourg. I am his alter-ego named ‘La Gueule’ (Ugly Face) that only Serge can see and talk to in the film. Calling him an alter ego or thinking about him and the real Serge as sort of a “Jeckle & Hyde” team were ways to get me close to the right space. But the best motivation for me was to think of ‘La Gueule’ as an extension of Gainsbourg’s personality. That other personality we are all capable of having that carries us to our extremes. ‘La Gueule’ was the extreme creativity of Gainsbourg, the extreme business smarts, the extreme anger, the extreme playful boy within. I had the privilege of playing all the facets of Gainsbourg that made him famous and beloved by millions, yet also corrupted his morals. I was his artistic muse, yet at the same time, I was everything he hated about himself. The same love / hate relationship I have with myself in real life.

MG: As an actor, when did you say to yourself “Wow I think I hit it big”?
DJ: Thank you so much for thinking I would have a reason to say that to myself, but those are words I have never spoken. Sometimes I still feel like an insecure little boy from Indiana who just wants people to like him. Disappearing into all my characters is such an escape from those insecurities. I have so much to learn and more years of filmmaking in me, so I never want to feel like I’ve hit it big until I’m retired or dead. Then I will have a chance to look back and thank God for blessing me with a very interesting career that many dream of …. including me.

MG: What would be your dream project to work on or make?
DJ: I have already done many dream jobs, so I wouldn’t feel at all cheated out of my dream job if it all ended today. However, I would jump at the chance to play a benevolent white-winged angel …. who sings …. how’s that for specific!?

MG: These might be rumors but I read that you might be involved with a few high profile movies over the next few years: “The Dark Knight” sequel as Riddler, “The Hobbit Pt.1 & 2”, “Silver Surfer” spinoff and “Frankenstein” remake. Any of these true?
DJ: The Riddler was purely rumor on my IMDB page that has since been taken down, but if and when they do get to casting for this movie, and if the Riddler is indeed in it, I wouldn’t hate the idea of playing him. As for “The Hobbit” movies, no actors have been contracted yet, as Peter Jackson said in a recent interview. I have been rumored for two years now, and no one has ever denied these rumors, nor has anyone confirmed them. So we wait patiently together on this one. A “Silver Surfer” movie has been talked about, but enough time has passed that I’m not holding my breath on this one, even though my option for two more movies as the Silver Surfer still has another year and a half. Another call I wouldn’t hate to get. And lastly …. Guillermo del Toro’s “Frankenstein.” This film would fit into that “dream role” category, especially with Guillermo writing and directing. He has told the press in other interviews that this would not be a remake, but his own adaptation of Mary Shelley’s novel, with the illustrated version’s artwork by Bernie Wrightson inspiring his desire to have me play the monster. Of course Guillermo is tied up with the “Hobbit” films for the next few years, so “Frankenstein” will be waiting for at least five years. Let’s hope this comes true!

Thanks again to Coolwaters Productions for setting up this interview, check them out they have one of the best client lists around.

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Interview with JT Petty

JT Petty started his career out of film school with a small $6K horror movie titled, “Soft for Digging”, went on to make “Mimic 3: Sentinel” and “The Burrowers”. He is recently planned to direct the remake of “Faces of Death”. Movie Mikes has known JT for years and got a chance to ask him some questions about his career and what next.

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Mike Gencarelli: Who/What has inspired you in the industry to pursue your current path?
JT Petty: I always assumed I would be making movies. My earliest memories are of my writing stories or making movies. I was probably 11 or 12 when I first saw Psycho and that was eye-opening. The monster movies always got me. Invasion of the Body Snatcher scared the shit out of me. I never saw Hitchcock’s Vertigo and decided then I needed to make moving. It was always there.

Mike Gencarelli: Your first film, “Soft for Digging”, cost only $6,000 to make, what were the challenges in getting it released?
JT Petty: It never really got a good release. It was out in theaters for a little while, very limited. It had some video deal but the people that put it out six years ago did a terrible job. They spelled the lead actors name wrong on the front of the box. There were typos on it. It drove me crazy. The DVD itself was a mess. It has an over-modulated commentary track and the sound was pretty shitty. The movie has been as pirated as anything else and I rely on that as my sort of distributing network.

Mike Gencarelli: For a film with virtually no dialogue, “Soft for Digging”, tells a very intense story so well, how did you come up with it?
JT Petty: It is a funny story. I was watching a lot of “The Road Warrior” at the time, which is one of my favorite movies. It was ’97 and we got our hand on a DVD player. We were amazed by how easy it was to watch “The Road Warrior” in Dutch or in another language. “The Road Warrior” in Dutch is the exact same movie as it is in English. You can come to that movie without knowing anything about it and not understand any of the dialogue. You can know easily exactly who everyone is, what their relationships are and how the story goes. It got me thinking about how you can tell me a movie without dialogue, which led me to the horror genre. I thought if I stuck to those conventions I didn’t have to work that much about the exposition and tell the story visually.

MG: After directing “Soft for Digging”, you directed “Mimic 3: Sentinel”, how was the transition to a big studio film?
JP: It was crazy, “Soft for Digging” was me and six friends in the woods. There was no money involved and weren’t a lot of second takes. It was practice, practice, practice and then we shot it once since it was on 16MM. It makes me feel like an old man, kids today are making independent films. You can buy a $500 video camera that will shoot high definition video and looks pretty good. Film is so expensive. So on “Mimic” suddenly we had 110 people that needed things to do. If I wanted to set someone on fire, we could hire someone who is good on getting set on fire. We had a little bit a CG in there. It was also really good we had professional actors. I was shocked that Amanda Plummer and Lance Hendrickson wanted to be in “Mimic 3”. Working with people like that was a huge education. It was a fun time.

MG: Tell us about “S&Man”, do you think it will ever be released?
JP: I hope so. It had some legal trouble. The company that produced it went out of business and lost a bunch of the label paper work. I have been going back and tracking down all of the rights. The rights holders are often hermetic weirdos in the middle of New Jersey. It takes as much detective work to get it back. We just cleared all that up and will able to get a disc out at the end of this year or beginning of next. It makes me sad though, it is a movie about the difference between documentary and fiction. It plays with a lot of the “Paranormal Activity and “District 9” ideas, which was more relevant three years ago. Now it is going to sneak out on DVD in 2011.

MG: What was it like working on “The Burrowers”? Was it hard shooting the film based in 1800s and set in desert?
JP: Yeah it was hard but really fun. It was like a normal movie shoot, you always have to kill yourself. It was definitely an example of not having enough money though. Lionsgate always had that film on a straight to video budget. I wanted to do rubber creatures and was trying to avoid CG. I shot with real horses and tried to be really faithful to the actual design facts of the period. All that meant though is we had to do it in a ridiculously short amount of time. We shot it in about 22 days, which for all exterior, nights, horses and rubber monsters shoots is nightmarish. On the other hand, I am hanging out shooting guns with Clancy Brown. It is hard to complain about that.

MG: You’ve written two Batman & three Splinter Cell video games, how did you get that gig? Any more planned?
JP: It happened sort of by chance. When I was just out of school and I was trying to save up money to edit “Soft for Digging”. I kept working twelve hour days and then editing for six hours and then sleep for four hours and doing the same thing again. Basically I went into a video game company looking for a day job. They also had an opening for a screenwriter so I applied for that. I guess around 1999/2000 was when the PS2 was just coming out. It was the first time there was enough memory to have dialogue in a video game. There was about four years then when I was the only English language screenwriter at Ubisoft. During that time I had done “Batman: Vengeance” and “Batman Begins”. I also made “Splinter Cell”, “Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow”, “Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory”. I am working on another game now called, “Homefront”. I am sharing screenwriting credit with John Milius and it sort of like “Red Dawn” type shooter. There is also an original license that Electronic Arts owns, in which am helping out with and getting off the ground.

MG: Is there any word on the “Splinter Movie”?
JP: Not that I know of. I wrote a couple of draft a few years ago when Peter Berg was trying to do it. Since then I think it’s been sold around a few times and I have no idea where it is now.

MG: Tell me about your “Faces of Death” planned remake?
JP: Supposedly, it has not been greenlit yet. We got a script and everyone loves it. We got a bunch of stuff in play just need to actually get it moving forward. It is definitely the movie I would most like to make next. This is funny because I have some pretty negative opinions about remakes in general. It is tough. Everyone in Hollywood is saying how hard it is to get something off the ground. “Faces of Death” seems like an obvious no brainer.

MG: What else do you have planned for the future?
JP: I am working on adaptation for Takashi Shimizu, who created “The Grudge”. I am sketching out a pilot that a friend and I just sold to HBO a couple weeks ago. Basically just staying busy!

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Interview with Julia Ling

Julia Ling is currently returning to NBC’s Chuck on May 10, 2010. She stars as Anna Wu, who left the show after Season 2. Julia is also featured in this year’s Sundance film “High School”. Movie Mikes had a chance talk to Julia and she tells us that “Chuck’s” Anna is back and has a few surprises to bring with her.

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Mike Gencarelli: You majored in chemical engineering, have you always wanted to act?
Julia Ling: I have always loved performing. I started when I was three playing the piano, dancing, singing and drawing. I just never knew I could make a living out of it. I started doing it on the side as a hobby. I kept on booking things. So that’s also when I was studying chemical engineering. I was very torn at the time. I started calling up a lot of engineers and asked them what it was like doing their job. After that I pursued acting instead [laughs].

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us about you role on NBC’s “Chuck”, do you enjoy playing Anna Wu?
Julia Ling: I love Anna. She kicks ass. She embodies what women like and is a display of female empowerment. She wears wild makeup, short skirts and lots of jewelry. It is so much fun. Although outside the show, I cannot wear that stuff out around town without consequences. It is great, I love playing her.

Mike Gencarelli: Are you excited about your return to “Chuck”, tell us about that?
Julia Ling: I am so excited. I am very eager to hear what the fans thinks as well when they watch it. Anna has been down in Hawaii, so she has a little sexy tan going when she returns. She has some score to settle with Morgan. His character has been changing a lot in season three. Anna is coming back and going to have a really big surprise.

MG: You started your own production company, Silver Rose Entertainment? Tell me about that?
JL: I started a little production company. I have some stories I want to tell. Hopefully I will be able to tell them appropriately someday. Part of being creative, is being able to tell stories. I eventually want to write, produce and direct.

MG: How do you find starring in TV different from movies?
JL: Movies are a lot more slowly paced. With “Chuck”, we get our script and film the entire scene over the next eight days. When we filmed my upcoming movie “High School”, we took like two pages and filmed over five days. With TV, you are filming eight pages in one day. I like doing both, but with movies I am able to travel more. I just finished the TV show, “The Deep End” and that is filming in Texas. It was much fun.

MG: What are your passions besides acting?
JL: Last year, I went on a USO tour. I absolutely love our military. It was really interesting. Plus I got to fire a shotgun. There is actually a video of me up on YouTube or my Facebook of me firing the shotgun. I love singing, dancing, painting, horseback riding and playing role playing games. I love even the outdoorsy stuff, like backpacking. I just did a 40-mile backpacking trip earlier this year. There is nothing like getting out there and appreciating nature. We saw fresh mountain lion paw prints and heard them purring in the night and it was amazing.

MG: We read something about you starring in a 3D zombie mermaid horror movie? What can you tell us about that?
JL: That is just in negotiations right now. It will be starring Bai Ling. There is nothing much to talk about yet. It looks really cool though, hopefully it will happen soon.

MG: Do you have anything else exciting planned for the future besides “Chuck”?
JL: I have another film called “Dynamite Swine”; it is a comedy about gambling. There is another one called “High School”, which starring Adrien Brody and Michael Chiklis. It was directed by John Stalberg, who co-wrote it with “The Grudge’s” Stephen Susco. “High School” was actually top 25 at Sundance this year. It is pretty hilarious. It is getting great review and it is a story of a school that gets HIGH. Everyone in the movie does a lot of getting high, including me. I have also been training hard in martial arts and in ballet. So just a lot of stuff going on.

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