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VOL. 4, ISSUE 1 | December 2012 /January 2013 EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Micah Haley CREATIVE DIRECTOR Erin Theriot MANAGING EDITOR Alexandra Fraioli EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS Jenny Bravo, Jillian Aubin GRAPHIC ARTIST Burton Chatelain, Jr. DESIGN ASSISTANT Alanna Scurlock DIRECTOR OF SALES Gene Jones
hile planning for this issue, I was stunned how many features being released in theaters in an eight week window had strong connections to Louisiana. Usually four or five in a two-month period is the norm, but this holiday season, eleven films are slated for release. From rom coms like Lay the Favorite to actioners like Bullet to the Head and award season hopefuls like Django Unchained, the volume of work pouring out of Louisiana onto silver screens across the globe is truly amazing. We felt this was a good sign that a new column was needed. Entitled simply Coming Soon, we’ve gathered the vitals on all eleven films, and along with essential info like release dates and cast lists, we’ve included information on where the
film was shot, and which Louisiana actors to look out for. Most of these flicks were filmed close by, but a few of them feature our friends to major roles, like Gangster Squad, which stars Louisiana natives Anthony Mackie and James Hebert. Next up: you need to join us for New Year’s Eve. For the second year, Scene Magazine will be ushering 2013 with our favorite friends from film and music. If you haven’t been to a Scene party, they are bigger and better than you have imagined. They are truly premier events with open bars, complimentary food, live music and the best crowd in Louisiana. For tickets and information about Scene’s NYE 2013, visit www.scenelouisiana.com/tickets.
MICAH HALEY EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
SALES Brinkley Maginnis, Sean Beauvais COVER PHOTO Jean-Paul Aussenard CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Anne Marie Fox, Phil Bray, Frank Masi, Glen Wilson, Richard Foreman, Jr., Suzi Hanover, Lorey Sebastian, Melinda Sue Gordon, Dale Robinette, Saeed Adyani, Andrew Cooper, Justin Lubin, Wilson Webb, Barry Wetcher, Jack English, Anthony Fiorin, John P. Johnson, Craig Mulcahy, Caitlin Barry, Bruce Bermelin, Ron Phillips, Steven Teagle, Whitney Huet, Charlotte Cox, Carol Gayle, Jessi Arnold, Kelli Binnings, Mark St. James CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Jenny Bravo, AJ Buckley, James Napper, III, Ainsley Beeman, Katianna Bear, Susan Ross, Jacob Peterman Scene Magazine At Raleigh Studios Baton Rouge 10000 Celtic Drive • Suite 201 • Baton Rouge, LA 70809 225-361-0701 At Second Line Stages 800 Richard St. • Suite 222 • New Orleans, LA 70130 504-224-2221 email@example.com • www.scenelouisiana.com Published By Louisiana Entertainment Publishers LLC CEO, Andre Champagne President, AJ Buckley Vice President, Micah Haley Display Advertising: Call Scene Magazine for a current rate card or visit www.scenelouisiana.com All submitted materials become the property of Louisiana Entertainment Publishers LLC. For subscriptions or more information visit our website www.scenelouisiana.com Copyright @ 2012 Louisiana Entertainment Publishers. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be used for solicitation or copied by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying or recording by any information storage or retrieval system, without the express written permission of the publisher.
8 | December 2012 /January 2013
CONTENTS ON THE COVER
BEFORE THE SCENE
ABOVE THE LINE
Luis Guzmán is the Aztec Warrior
Find out which of your favorite faces is filming in Louisiana A Conversation with Hill Harper What to Watch
True Blood’s Sam Trammell
MUSIC / SOUND SPEED
Voodoo Experience in Review
FASHION / THE RED CARPET 68 Winter Faces
ON THE SCENE
Notable News and Celebrities on the Scene
IN THE MIX Filmmaker Kenny Morrison
New Orleans Film Festival 2012 Scene Magazine and NOFF present A Film Fest Affair
LETTERS OF THE LAW
10 | December 2012 /January 2013
SCENE ON MATTHEW McCONAUGHEY The Paperboy
Louisiana regulars MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY and director Lee Daniels recently teamed up in the racy, raw and sure-to-drop-your-jaw drama, The Paperboy. In a recent string of divergent performances from his steady stream of rom coms, McConaughey has been pushing the envelope in The Paperboy, Killer Joe and HBO’s Eastbound and Down. His next project brings him back to the Crescent City in an equally challenging choice of roles. The Dallas Buyer’s Club is now filming in New Orleans.
Matthew McConaughey as Ward Jansen photo by Anne Marie Fox
Jennifer Garner as Cindy Green photo by Phil Bray
The Odd Life of Timothy Green Andy Serkis as Caesar
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Some of JENNIFER GARNER’s latest and greatest films have depicted her as a victim of infertility, including this year’s The Odd Life of Timothy Green, which brings to life a child from the earth. In a role originally created for Hilary Swank (who dropped out earlier this year), Garner will play Dr. Eve Saks in the upcoming flick The Dallas Buyer’s Club, filming in New Orleans now.
Best known for an obsession with his Precious, ANDY SERKIS endeared and creeped us out as greasy Gollum in The Lord of the Rings franchise. Keeping with his frequent choice of creepy critter films, Serkis will reprise his role in the sequel to the prequel of Plant of the Apes, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, set to be released mid 2014. He will lead the pack once again as super smart ape leader Caesar.
MORE SCENE ON
SCENE ON CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Captain Von Trapp shows no signs of slowing down, even as he approaches his mideighties. In recent years, which have included his performance in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER is busier than ever. His next project, Elsa & Fred, is an atypical film set to shoot in New Orleans through early 2013.
Christopher Plummer as Mikael Blomkvist photo courtesy Sony Pictures
Sylvester Stallone as Barney Ross photo by Frank Masi
SYLVESTER STALLONE The Expendables 2 Robert De Niro as Jack Byrnes photo by Glen Wilson
ROBERT DE NIRO Little Fockers
ROBERT DE NIROâ€™s performances in the Meet the Parents franchise left audiences uncomfortably in stitches as they watched a young man become acquainted with his in-laws. The latest film in the series, Little Fockers, brought the laughs to a new level, when sonin-law Greg and daughter Pam have children. In a very different role from the powerful patriarch Jack Byrnes, De Niro hits the ring one last time as a boxer in the upcoming Grudge Match, slated to hit theaters in 2014. 14 | December 2012 /January 2013
SYLVESTER STALLONE is the aging authority on kicking ass and taking names. In the recent summer blockbuster The Expendables 2, Stallone assembled perhaps the biggest, baddest, most boss ensemble of all time, joined by Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, JeanClaude Van Damme, Jason Statham, Chuck Norris, Jet Li and Terry Crews. Stalloneâ€™s next project brings him back to the Bayou State in early 2013 as he and Robert De Niro battle it out in Grudge Match.
MORE SCENE ON
New Orleans • Elmwood • Baton Rouge • Shreveport Hollywood • Santa Monica • Miami Oldboy Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters TwelveYears a Slave 2 Guns Olympus Has Fallen The Butler The Host The Hot Flashes Spring Breakers Barefoot Schism Iceman Dog Fight Contraband Looper Cogan’s Trade Playing the Field Alien Tornado Medallion 21 Jump Street
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The Lucky One The Somnambulist The Promised Land: A Swamp Pop Journey Father of Invention Snatched Pregnancy Pact Beauty & the Briefcase Mandrake Monsterwolf Scream of the Banshee Cigarettes et bas Nylons The Mechanic Skateland I Love You Phillip Morris Wolvesbayne The Dunwich Horror Quantum Apocalypse Sinners and Saints Front of the Class
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SCENE ON GUY PEARCE Lawless
Although virtually unrecognizable, GUY PEARCE recently appeared in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus as founder and CEO of Weyland Corp, Peter Weyland. He also approached iconic villain status as sadistic prohi enforcer Charlie Rakes in director John Hillcoat’s prohibition era drama Lawless. In the versatile actor’s most recent project, Hateship, Friendship, he is featured as a potential love interest opposite Kristen Wiig.
Guy Pearce as Charlie Rakes photo by Richard Foreman, Jr.
Kristen Wiig as Annie Walker photo by Suzi Hanover
KRISTEN WIIG Bridesmaids Hailee Steinfeld as Mattie Ross photo by Lorey Sebastian
HAILEE STEINFELD True Grit
The 2011 remake of 1969’s True Grit made quite an immediate impression, earning several Oscar nominations for its all-star cast, and launched the career of budding young actress HAILEE STEINFELD. The film proved to be Steinfeld’s big break, garnering her an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Playing another feisty teenager, Steinfeld recently wrapped filming Hateship, Friendship in which she stars as a wild child under the care of a nanny (Kristen Wiig). 16 | December 2012 /January 2013
One of today’s most lauded comedians, KRISTEN WIIG both wrote and starred in the crowd-pleasing, chart-topping comedy Bridesmaids. The film was nominated for two Academy Awards and grossed nearly $300 million worldwide. Her current project, based on a book of short stories by Alice Munro, Hateship, Friendship recently wrapped in Louisiana. Wiig stars as an old maid opposite Guy Pearce.
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by AJ Buckley
HILL HARPER Hill Harper is a veteran actor best known as Dr. Sheldon Hawkes on CBS’s CSI:NY. He has also appeared in Get On The Bus, He Got Game, The Skulls and The Visit. He has also written four New York Times bestsellers, Letters to a Younger Brother, Letters to a Younger Sister, The Conversation and The Wealth Cure: Putting Money in Its Place.
What made you want to become an actor? I played high school football and went to college to play football. During my freshman year, I took a theatre class because it fit my schedule, and I absolutely loved it. Later, I went to Harvard Law School, and I expected to graduate and take a job as a lawyer and pay off my student loans. But I had already fallen in love with acting.
What was your biggest fear? I was afraid of not accomplishing something. I didn’t know where to start, and there was a lot of fear around all that uncertainty. I think a lot of us out there, we love something, but then we’re not sure, “Well, how can I actually make a living out of that? Can I make a living at this thing that I love? And if so, in what way can I do that?” It’s good to have mentors and guides. But in my case in the beginning of my career, I didn’t have anybody like that.
What was your lowest point? When I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. I was shooting a movie in Atlanta called For Colored Girls with Tyler Perry. I have a friend who is a surgeon in Atlanta. I shadowed him when he was a resident in L.A. because I was going to play a resident surgeon on a new series for CBS called City of Angels. I woke up one morning and I couldn’t swallow. I knew something was wrong. So I called him. He walked me around, and he took me to the oncology department, they did a fine needle biopsy that was ultrasound guided. They stuck my neck sixteen times with the needles and put it on slides and said, “Come back in a week.” I was able to get my voice back and able to shoot, and went back to the hospital a week later. And I immediately knew that something was really wrong. The week before, we were laughing and joking with the nurses. This time, they were all very serious. And I knew at that second from the way that they greeted me, the level of seriousness, I knew something was really wrong. I was diagnosed with cancer. We ended up sending out to pathology to get a second opinion, and the second opinion was even worse. They were like, “You need to have surgery even quicker than they recommended.” And the reason why it was very scary for me was because my father had died of cancer in 2000. Thinking about my own mortality, I hadn’t achieved some of the goals that I set out for. I think about my goals in life, and I think there’s four things: I want to have a positive impact, I want 18 | December 2012 /January 2013
to leave a positive legacy that goes beyond me. And then while I’m here, love and serve. And if I can do those four things then I know that I’ve done it, and I don’t think that I’ve done those four things enough. So it really was scary for me and it really was something that was a low moment, but, in a way, an empowering moment.
What kept you from walking away? I was very scared because what happens is your vocal nerves wrap around your thyroid, and one of the potential complications of the surgery is if they accidentally damage your vocal nerves then you’re hoarse. Or worse still, you can’t speak, which would end my career. And I was very afraid about that, and that’s why I was very careful to pick the best surgeon and talk it through. One of the things that I love has come out of my non-profit foundation and my books are my speaking engagements across the country. I get to speak to young people and I get to hopefully empower and motivate them. My motivational speaking tours are something that I’ve come to love, and I was so afraid that if I had lost my voice that my career would be over, but also my speaking engagements would be over as well. I didn’t want that to happen.
What did you have to walk away from? There was a time in my career that I made a mistake by walking away. I was doing a successful play in New York, and I had been nominated for an Independent Spirit Award, a best acting award for a movie called The Visit. And I had been told that I was going to be the lead in this movie with Eminem that went on to become 8 Mile. But in doing that, I had to go to Detroit to do my screen test with Eminem. But when you do a play in New York, it’s eight shows a week and you can’t just leave. I got caught up in this idea. People were saying, “Oh, if you do this, you’re going to be a movie star. You’ll be this.” You start to believe the hype around you, and I made the mistake of leaving the play. I thought for my career, and I believed some advice my representatives gave me. I left the show and I shouldn’t have left the show. I should have stayed with the show through the end of the run. An understudy took over the role and didn’t have a lot of preparation. So all those people that paid for tickets after I left probably didn’t see the quality of show that they deserved to see. What’s crazy is that the first day I was supposed to work with Eminem, 9/11 happened. And obviously, everything got topsy-turvy. I ended up not being in that movie and I’ve always looked back on that. If you make a commitment to something, even though what seems to be a better opportunity may present itself, don’t walk away. Fulfill your commitment and then you can leave with your head high. And it took that lesson - and it was a pretty heartbreaking lesson in my career - to learn that. And it’s something that I regret walking away from.
Who has been your closest ally? My grandfathers, on both sides. Even though they aren’t alive anymore, I still attempt to live my life in a way that honors their legacy. My grandfather on my mother’s side, his name was Harold Hill. He was a pharmacist in small town Seneca, South Carolina, who served the black
community during segregation and the Civil Rights Movement. African Americans couldn’t go to Walgreens and Rexall. They’d go to his pharmacy. And I would hear stories from him about how if they needed prescription drugs but couldn’t afford them - if they were sick and needed medicine - he would trade potatoes or chickens for his prescription medicine. And he really was in service of the community. My grandfather on my father’s side, Harry Harper, Sr., was a doctor in a small town in Iowa. I remember there would always be different people at our breakfast table or dinner table, people that may not have a place to go. One morning, there was a strange man who looked a little gruff at the breakfast table. This was when I was very young. I asked my grandmother, “Who is that guy?” And she said, “He just got out of prison. He didn’t have a place to go, so your grandfather is letting him stay here and do some work.” In 2007, it was the Iowa Caucuses for the Democratic Presidential Nomination. And President Obama and I have been friends for over twenty years. We went to Harvard Law School together. I was asked to go work Iowa for the campaign. Since I was born there, they knew I had a lot of roots there. At one of the events, they advertised that I would be there speaking. An older gentleman who had to be in his eighties came up to me. His hands were full of calluses. You could tell he was a man who had worked his entire life. He shook my hand and said, “Hey do you remember me? My name’s Henry.” I said, “Hi Henry.” He said, “I came down to see you.” I said, “Ok, hello.” He said, “You don’t remember me, do you?” I said, “Sir, I don’t. Have we met?” He said, “Your grandfather took me in after I got out of prison and gave me a job, and I’ll always be indebted to him and your family. We met those summers when you would visit the farm, before he died. I saw your name in the paper that you were going to be here, and I wanted to come and say hello.” And I tell you, man, I get emotional just talking about it now. When you treat people well, you create legacy of your behavior, it’s transferred generation to generation and people’s lives can really be changed. I’m flawed, I make a lot of mistakes myself, I mess up and I probably don’t live up to everything they expected, but I am attempting to do my best at that.
What were you doing the morning before the audition that changed your life? Spike Lee hired me for the film Get on the Bus. I was an actor who didn’t have a lot of credits, and there was no real reason for him to put me in his film. I went in to do the audition, and I was acting my heart out and I could kind of see Spike Lee in my peripheral vision and he kinda looked at his watch, and then at his phone. I was thinking in my head, “Oh God, he must hate me.” And then it was over. And I got the job. Being in Get on the Bus was such a life changer not just for the credit, but the fact that for most of the movie, I sat next to and listened to Ossie Davis and Spike Lee.
What were some words that kept you going? Two big words I go back to all the time are “believe” and “destiny.” I also put up big words like promise, faith, hope, dreams, goals, happiness, possibility. But believe and destiny have always been really big for me.
How have you changed? Hopefully, I’ve learned that, artistically, we build bodies of work, and hopefully I can take it easy on myself. I used to really beat myself up a lot about a scene if it didn’t go right. As actors, we don’t
BEFORE THE SCENE
HILL HARPER have control over the way it’s edited, or whether it ends up in the movie. I’ve just learned to hopefully take it easy on myself a little bit more, say, “It’s ok,” and then relax a little bit more in my work.
What words do you have to inspire others? There is nothing that you cannot do. The people who have created impact and legacy in this world in a positive way are people that believed that they could achieve anything. And that’s what we need. Follow your heart, no matter what. S A partner in Scene Magazine and the president of Louisiana Entertainment Publishers, AJ has starred for the last eight years as Adam Ross on the hit TV show CSI:NY, now on Friday nights at 8pm on CBS. Originally from Dublin and raised in Vancouver, he has spent the past twelve years in Los Angeles acting, writing and directing. He is currently in pre-production in Louisiana on North of Hell, in which he will star and produce. Find out more on Twitter at @AJohnBuckley and at www.ajbuckley.net. www.scenelouisiana.com | 19
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KILLING THEM SOFTLY Friday, Nov. 30
Rated: R • Run Time: 97 minutes Director: Andrew Dominik Written and directed by Andrew Dominik in the heart of New Orleans, Killing Them Softly is an American crime drama. Starring Brad Pitt, the movie is based on the 1974 novel Cogan’s Trade by George V. Higgins. Killing Them Softly follows professional enforcer Jackie Cogan (Pitt), who investigates a heist that occurs during a high stakes, mob-protected poker game that has resulted in the collapse of the local
criminal economy. Will Jackie Cogan successfully track them down and restore order? Witness the hunt in theaters on November 30 to find out. The film also features Scoot McNairy (Monsters), Ben Mendelsohn (Animal Kingdom), Ray Liotta (Goodfellas), Richard Jenkins (The Visitor), James Gandolfini (The Sopranos), Vincent Curatola, Max Casella and Sam Shepard.
photo by Melinda Sue Gordon
Out on her own, Beth journeys to New York through the sordid world of sports betting, where she finds herself working for an unctuous bookie who’s bad news. Dink’s luck begins to run out as Beth lands on the wrong side of the law. The all-star cast includes Bruce Willis as Dink Heimowitz, Catherine Zeta-Jones as Tulip, Rebecca Hall as Beth Raymer, Joshua Jackson, Vince Vaughn, Laura Prepon, John Carroll Lynch, Corbin Bernsen and Frank Grillo. Prior to its theatrical release, Lay the Favorite is now available for rental via On Demand.
photo by Frank Masi
himself on the bench in his personal life. In an effort to redeem his weak past performance, he returns home and is coaxed into coaching his son’s soccer team. While attempting to take on the roles of father and coach, George is faced with the challenge of not falling in love with his son’s mother, Stacie (Biel), all the while interacting with attractive and tenacious soccer moms in pursuit of one thing: him.
photo by Dale Robinette
LAY THE FAVORITE Friday, Dec. 7
Rated: R • Run Time: 94 minutes Director: Stephen Frears Directed by Stephen Fears and filmed in New Orleans, Lay the Favorite is a 2012 American comedy starring Bruce Willis and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Based on Beth Raymer’s memoir of the same title, the film follows a young Las Vegas cocktail waitress named Beth, who falls in love with a sports gambler named Dink (Willis). Much to Dink’s surprise, he finds Beth has an impeccable mind for numbers, solidifying her as his good luck charm. But Dink’s beautiful wife Tulip (Zeta-Jones) is outraged, eventually leaving him with no choice but to relieve Beth of her duties.
PLAYING FOR KEEPS Friday, Dec. 7
Rated: PG-13 • Run Time: 95 minutes Director: Gabriele Muccino Shot in Shreveport under the working title Playing the Field, this comedy’s all-star line up features Gerard Butler with Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Judy Greer and Dennis Quaid. Directed by Gabriele Muccino, the director of The Pursuit of Happyness, Playing for Keeps follows a charming former professional soccer star named George (Butler), who finds
MORE COMING SOON 22 | December 2012 /January 2013
COMING SOON SO UNDERCOVER Friday, Dec. 7
Rated: PG-13 • Running Time: 94 minutes Director: Tom Vaughan So Undercover is an upcoming 2012 action comedy shot in New Orleans at Tulane University and directed by Tom Vaughan. The movie is set to be released in February 2013, starring Miley Cyrus, Jeremy Piven, Josh Bowman, Kelly Osbourn and Megan Park. A private investigator named Molly (Cyrus) chooses to leave high school to work with her father, a former police officer. However, life unexpectedly changes when an FBI agent approaches her to go undercover in the one place they’re unable to infiltrate: a university
sorority. Molly’s mission is to protect the life of sorority sister Alex Patrone whose father plans to testify against very dangerous people. With a complete makeover and multiple suspects on her list, Molly must traverse the chaos of a sorority sister’s social life only to discover that everyone is not who they appear to be, herself included. The cast also includes Mike O’Malley as Sam, Eloise Mumford as Sasha, Lauren McKnight as Alex, Autumn Reeser as Bizzy and Matthew Settle as Professor Talloway.
photo by Saeed Adyani
ON THE ROAD Friday, Dec. 7
Rated: R • Running Time: 124 minutes Director: Walter Salles Jack Kerouac’s famous novel On the Road finally hits the big screen. Filmed in Louisiana and directed by Walter Salles, the film is the famous beatnik story of young aspiring New York writer Sal Paradise (Sam Riley), whose life is upset by the arrival of the ever-so-charming ex-con Dean Moriarty (Garrett Hedlund) and his intrepid, witty and seductive girlfriend Marylou, played by The Twilight Saga’s Kristen Stewart.
Classically compatible Sal and Dean are determined not to get locked into a constricted lifestyle. Cutting all ties, the two friends and Marylou take to the road in search of freedom and… wait for it… themselves. Among the faces they meet along the way are Amy Adams, Tom Sturridge, Danny Morgan, Alice Braga, Elisabeth Moss, Kristen Dunst and Viggo Mortensen.
DJANGO UNCHAINED Tuesday, Dec. 25
Rated: R • Running Time: 141 minutes Director: Quentin Tarantino Django Unchained is the highly anticipated new film from writer/director Quentin Tarantino starring Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington and Samuel Jackson. Scheduled to release on December 25 and filmed in the heart of New Orleans at Second Line Stages, Django Unchained is set in and inspired by the sordid history of the Deep South. The film follows Django (Foxx), a man enslaved in the South. He is desperate for freedom and longs for his wife Broomhilda (Washington), who has
been imprisoned by the dapper but merciless plantation owner Calvin Candie (DiCaprio). Dr. King Schultz (Waltz), a bounty hunter who poses as a dentist, frees Django from his malicious masters during a slave auction. This gives him the option of traveling crosscountry in order to hunt down a brutal band of blood thirsty murderers. If successful, Django will be liberated from slavery and reunited with his wife. Expect copious amounts of Tarantino’s signature cinema swagger.
photo by Andrew Cooper
MORE COMING SOON 24 | December 2012 /January 2013
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COMING SOON TEXAS CHAINSAW 3-D Friday, Jan. 4
Rated: R • Running Time: 95 minutes Director: John Luessenhop Picking up exactly where the terrifying 1974 original left off, Texas Chainsaw 3D continues the legendary story of the homicidal Sawyer family in Newt, Texas, where for decades people have vanished without a trace. Filmed in Shreveport at Camp Minden Military Base, director John Lussenhop creates an entire experience in 3D by using Red Epic cameras. Alexandra Daddario plays a young woman named Heather who, years later and hundreds of miles away from the original massacre, learns that she has inherited a Texas estate from a grandmother she unknowingly had.
While embarking on a road trip with friends to discover her roots, Heather learns she is the sole owner of an extravagant yet secluded Victorian mansion (a set designed to be an exact replica of the house where the original film was shot). Not so fast though, Heather’s recent and unexpected fortune proves costly as terror awaits her in the mansion’s damp cellars. Will Leatherface still be lurking in the shadows? Hold on to your popcorn and find out for yourself when the film opens wide on January 4, 2013. The cast includes Alexandra Daddario,
photo by Justin Lubin
Trey Songz, Tania Raymonde, Keram MalickiSanchez, Shaun Sipos, Thom Barry, Burt Hartman, Scott Eastwood, and Dan Yeager as Leatherface. To get a more in depth look at Texas Chainsaw 3D, check out Scene’s interview with Shaun Sipos at www.scenelouisiana.com.
GANGSTER SQUAD Tuesday, Jan. 11
Rated: R • Running Time: 113 minutes Director: Ruben Fleischer Gangster Squad is a crime film directed by Ruben Fleischer, starring Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Nick Nolte, Emma Stone, Sean Penn and Louisiana natives Anthony Mackie and James Hebert. Set in a town run by heartless, Brooklyn-born mob king Mickey Cohen (Penn), this throwback actioner tells the long history of LAPD’s hard fight to keep East Coast Mafia types out of Los Angeles in the ‘40s and ‘50s. Cohen reaps the ill-gotten gains from drugs, guns and girls your mother warned you
about, including every wire bet placed west of Chicago. With protection provided by his own paid goons, as well as the police and the politicians under his heel, Mickey Cohen intimidates even the most brave, street-savvy cop. However, he may have overlooked one unknown crew of LAPD outsiders led by Sgt. John O’Mara (Josh Brolin) and Jerry Wooters (Ryan Gosling.) The determined duo bands together to terminate Cohen’s fraudulent empire. Originally set to be released September 7, the
photo by Wilson Webb
film was bumped to a January 11, 2013 by Warner Bros Pictures in the wake of the 2012 Aurora shooting because of a closely related scene. Check out this colorful retelling of events as the LAPD takes back their aspiring city from one of the most dangerous mafia bosses of all time.
BROKEN CITY Tuesday, Jan. 18
Rated: R • Running Time: N/A Director: Allen Hughes In a Broken City with rampant injustice, Mark Wahlberg plays an ex-cop named Billy Taggart, who seeks redemption and revenge after being double-crossed and then framed by the city’s most powerful figure, Mayor Nicholas Hostetler (Russell Crowe). Billy’s relentless pursuit of justice coupled with his streetwise toughness produces an unstoppable force as he trails Emily Barlow (Catherine Zeta-Jones), the wife of New York
City’s mayor. This American crime drama, directed by Allen Hughes, reveals an even larger scandal than imagined as Billy becomes more than an ex-cop on a mission for justice. He becomes Mayor Hostetler’s worst nightmare. Shooting of Broken City began in November 2011 in New York City - where the film is set - and later continued in New Orleans and other locations in Louisiana. Broken City opens wide on January 18, 2013.
photo by Barry Wetcher
MORE COMING SOON 26 | December 2012 /January 2013
COMING SOON PARKER
Friday, Jan. 25
Rated: R • Running Time: N/A Director: Taylor Hackford Parker is a 2013 American crime thriller directed by Taylor Hackford, based on Donald E. Westlake’s novel Flashfire. The film stars action staple Jason Statham and Jennifer Lopez. Parker (Statham), a professional thief, lives by a unique personal code of ethics: don’t steal from people who can’t afford it and don’t hurt people who don’t deserve it. Parker’s crew, however, double-crosses him on his latest heist, stealing all of his stash and leaving him for dead. Determined to make sure they regret it, Parker tracks them down to Palm Beach, Florida, playground of the rich and famous, where the crew is
planning their biggest score ever. Donning the disguise of a rich Texan, Parker takes on an unlikely partner named Leslie, played by the lovely Jennifer Lopez. While she’s short on cash, Leslie is full of ambition and her jaw dropping looks only hint at the savvy insider that she really is. Together, Parker and Leslie formulate a plan to hijack the score, take everyone down and escape clean. In addition to Jason Statham and Jennifer Lopez, cast members include Michael Chiklis, Nick Nolte and character actor extraordinaire Clifton Collins Jr. Parker opens wide in theaters on January 25, 2013.
photo by Jack English
BULLET TO THE HEAD Friday, Feb. 1
Rated: R • Running Time: 97 minutes Director: Walter Hill Bullet to the Head is a 2013 action film directed by Walter Hill and based upon Alexis Nolent’s French graphic novel Du Plomb Dans La Tete. The film stars Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang (Fast Five), Sarah Shahi (Showtime’s The L Word), Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra), Christian Slater (Breaking In), John Seda (Treme), Weronika Rosati (Luck) and Khal Drogo himself, Jason Momoa.
Filmed in New Orleans under the working title Headshot, Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a New Orleans hitman who forms an unlikely alliance with Washington D.C. detective Taylor Kwan. The two team up to bring down the killer of their former partners. Will the number of headshots in this movie rival Black Ops 2? Watch the drama unfold Feb 1, 2013 as Bullet to the Head opens in theaters. photo by Frank Masi
28 | December 2012 /January 2013
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Sam Trammell behind the scenes of White Rabbit
photo by Anthony Fiorin
SAM TRAMMELL CHASES THE WHITE RABBIT by Jenny Bravo
nown nationwide as Bon Temps bar owner Sam Merlotte on HBO’s True Blood, Sam Trammell’s not faking it. “I actually lived in New Orleans twice. I was born there, lived there for a year, then moved to Texas and North Dakota,” he remembers. “Then, back to New Orleans for pre-school, kindergarten and first grade.” While back on set now filming True Blood in Los Angeles, Trammell recently wrapped filming the new movie White Rabbit in Louisiana. “I’m the only person from Louisiana on the show, and I feel very connected to the show because of that. I just feel like I know it. Even thought I didn’t grow up my whole life in Louisiana, most of my relatives did, and I’ve been around them my whole life. I know the people.” On True Blood, Trammell plays a cranky bar owner with a shape-shifting problem. “The whole series is based on books that Charlaine Harris wrote and Sam Merlotte is a character in 30 | December 2012 /January 2013
those books. It’s funny because I’ll travel around the country meeting fans, and a lot of the fans will tell me that I seem like the person that’s in the books,” he says. “That’s always nice.” “The casting was pretty straightforward,” recalls Trammell, who at the time had seen success on the stage, but was unknown to film and television fans. “I went in to audition for Sam Merlotte and they decided they liked me for the part and wanted to cast me. I met Alan Ball before the test. I read with him and he gave me some notes on the character, just little, tiny things. Then, you go in front of all the executives at HBO - the way you do if you’re going to be a regular on any television series - and then you audition. You also sign your contract. It’s kind of nerve racking. But I was fortunate enough to get the part.” Trammell’s latest project also filmed in Louisiana. Produced by Shaun Sanghani and Jacky Lee Morgan, White Rabbit is
Sam Trammell as Sam Merlotte in True Blood photo by John P. Johnson www.scenelouisiana.com | 31
FILM | a dark film filled with subversive comedy. It stars Trammell as the father of Harlon, a teenager played by The Descendents star Nick Krause, whose character suffers from visions of a white rabbit he hunted as a child. “I think it will be pretty controversial. It’s just that it’s a tough subject. It’s about this kid who has a really tough childhood, and he doesn’t really fit in at school. His father is a very stern man. He’s very strict. He’s an alcoholic and he’s also got a drug problem. He smokes meth. He’s just very hard on his son. He wants his son to be like him, a hunter. And the son has a tough experience where [he and his father go hunting] and he shoots this rabbit but he only injures it. And it kind of haunts him for the rest of his life. He starts having hallucinations. He’s very into comic book characters and comic books. I play an oldfashioned guy and to me, it’s weird. I make him tear it down, and he starts seeing the comic book characters in hallucinations and also, a white rabbit. There are definitely some twists and turns. It’s definitely a dark story, but it’s got some really nice humor in it as well.” When asked about his hunting skills, Trammell replied, “My dad was a duck hunter. He doesn’t really hunt much anymore. A lot of my family were duck hunters, I grew up in Louisiana! I did a little hunting too. I’m not a gun owner now so I did have to brush up a little bit. But it wasn’t foreign to me at all.” Trammell is now best known for his on-screen personas, but his real start was on stage. “I went to Brown University in Rhode Island. I wasn’t doing any acting at all. I was kind of interested in it, but I was intimidated by the theater department at Brown. But I auditioned for a play my last semester of college and just loved it so much that I decided to forget about my graduate school ideas and just move to New York.” Though now busy with projects on the big and small screens, Trammell doesn’t plan on abandoning the stage forever. “When I do go back to the stage, obviously you have to have your voice in shape. It’s a whole different thing, performing live for people that are far away from you as opposed to performing to a mic and a close up, where you just have to whisper or talk in regular voice. When I don’t do theater for a while and then go back, I always remember how scary it is, going out and doing performances in front of people. It always comes back to me, but I’m sure it’ll be a bit of a culture shock, if you will, when I return to the stage.” When he’s not working, Sam Trammell supports the Surfrider Foundation. “They basically clean up beaches,” he explains. “They do a lot of water testing to see how much pollution is there and try to clean up the water. They’re a great foundation.” White Rabbit is currently in post-production with an expected 2013 release date, and the new season of True Blood will also return next year. Find out more about the Surfrider Foundation at www.surfrider.org. S 32 | December 2012 /January 2013
Trammell with fellow True Blood star Anna Paquin
Sam Merlotte (Trammell) offers Tara (Rutina Wesley) a drink
photo by John P. Johnson
photo by John P. Johnson
Trammell with producer Shaun Sanghani, co-star Nick Krause and director Tim McCann on the set of White Rabbit photo by Anthony Fiorin
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The Paperboy Marquis at the Joy Theatre
THE NEW ORLEANS
FILM FESTIVAL GROWS AND GROWS by Katianna Bear
n the opening night of the 23rd Annual New Orleans Film Festival, executive director Jolene Pinder stood on stage at the newly restored Joy Theatre in awe. She humbly thanked the sponsors, filmmakers and supporters for making a great success possible. Every seat in the house was filled with cheering audience members anxious for the premiere of Oscar-nominated director Lee Daniels’ The Paperboy, a provocative and sexually-charged story of crime and prejudice starring Matthew McConaughey, Nicole Kidman, Zac Efron, David Oyelowo, John Cusack and Macy Gray. The audience applause heightened as Pinder acknowledged the New Orleans Film Festival’s record
34 | December 2012 /January 2013
Opening night at the Joy Theatre
photos by Craig Mulcahy
high achievement of 1,250 film submissions from around the world, a staggering 40% increase from the year prior. “We have never hosted an opening night in such a large venue and, of course, we were a little nervous about filling a space for 550+ people,” says Pinder. “When I stood onstage before the crowd, I just couldn’t believe how many people had come out to kick off the film festival. I saw a lot of familiar faces. I saw filmmakers wearing their Mardi Gras bead lanyards. It was just amazing.” This year was a milestone for the NOFF as it has gained worldwide recognition as a prominent platform celebrating excellence in both the business and art of filmmaking. Scene hosted “A Film Fest Affair” at Second Line Stages, the single largest event of the New Orleans Film Festival. Partygoers wrapped around the side of the building, anxiously awaiting the approval of Scene’s enforcer of a strict yet humorous dress code. Women were informed to leave their bump-its, Cheetos spray tan and Norts — that’s Nike shorts — at home, while fellows were reminded that tattoo-inspired brands such as Affliction or Ed Hardy were no longer (if ever) trendy nor acceptable. Walking into the event was a true red carpet experience. Cameras flashed and fashion forward reporters interviewed partygoers about their outfit of choice. Much of the cast and crew of Spike Lee’s remake of Oldboy, including Spike Lee himself, were in attendance. Also present were actor Omar Benson Miller of Homefront and producers Shaun Sanghani and Jacky Lee Morgan. The party brought actors, actresses, filmmakers and film-lovers from around to world to mingle and celebrate in anticipation of the week’s events, creating a great opportunity to get to know the talent behind the scenes of NOFF as well as those involved in productions www.scenelouisiana.com | 35
filming locally. The successful turnout and energy from the Scene party resonated throughout the entire week of the film festival. The citywide slate of film events was spread out over eleven different locations in the New Orleans area, with free panels and conversations open to the public. Pinder was especially excited about one new program, “Let’s Geaux to the Movies.” “It brings high-school aged youth from around the city to attend films at the festival and participate in Q&As with directors,” she says. “We had never done this before and with the help of our incredible education coordinator, we suddenly had hundreds of kids buzzing around the CAC, watching films in the theater and interacting with Cinema Reset, an exhibit created in conjunction with the CAC. It was unforgettable.” Panels included information on film distribution, modern animation, a Beasts of the Southern Wild case study, new frontiers in post-production, funding for indie films, People Say Project and queer film lectures. “I personally attended many of the panels and they were always lively, full and informative,” says Pinder. “It felt different, like our local film industry was really seeing the festival’s potential for connection and learning. In general, it really felt like local and visiting industry folks were truly seeing NOFF as a great place to see great films and to network. James Franco snuck into a screening of the documentary Hollywood Hair! Perhaps the greatest sign of growth was the 36 | December 2012 /January 2013
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sheer number of filmmakers and jurors who came from all over the world -- we had 175+ visiting filmmakers and twenty-two of our twenty-four jurors attended the festival this year. These numbers are unprecedented and from all accounts, both filmmakers and jurors really appreciated the spirit of the New Orleans Film Festival. We want to be known as a festival that cares deeply for accepted filmmakers.” The NOFF also chose six free screenings that they believed had such impact, they needed to be shared with the largest possible audience. The NOFF gave out an astounding $48,000 to films and filmmakers this year, dispersed to thirty-six films made by Louisiana locals, seventeen films about Louisiana and forty-two films made in Louisiana. A private brunch and awards ceremony to congratulate and honor all of the filmmakers in the NOFF was sponsored by film industry logistics company Hollywood Trucks. In its second year, “Pitch Perfect” offered Southern film students the opportunity to convince judges to believe in their dream projects. The students practiced the art of pitching in a competition broken off into two rounds: documentary and narrative. Prominent film professionals including Will French, Angela Tucker, Lois Vossen, Danny Bigel and Millennium Films producer Diego Martinez served as judges and offered their professional expertise to students. The judges then chose winners from each session and awarded them with $500 toward their production, along with an academic version of Movie Magic Budgeting & Scheduling software. Also in their second year were “Keeping Score” and “OUTakes.” “Keeping Score” honors New Orleans’ most beloved treasure by offering six films focused on music. Prior to each show, the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation sponsored a live musical performance for the audience to enjoy. “OUTakes” served the best contemporary LGBT-themed films that gave real and insightful perspective into LGBT life. “OUTakes” members were extremely active in NOFF this year with fourteen out of twenty filmmakers present for Q&As and conversation following each film. 38 | December 2012 /January 2013
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However, program director Clint Bowie said some films were not for everyone. “There were a number of films at NOFF that split audiences this year (including Four, The Paperboy, Patron Saints), but none as much as Compliance, which screened four times, the most of any festival film. And it also yielded the highest number of walk-outs. Based on true events, the film centers around a nineteenyear-old fast food employee who has been accused of stealing by someone on the phone claiming to be a police officer— and is then forced by her supervisor to undergo a series of humiliating ordeals. It’s definitely a film that makes the audience squirm and tests viewers’ sensibilities.” Women in the film industry made quite an impact this year as ten out of fifteen directors were female. A celebratory happy hour open to all women in the film industry was held in honor of their achievements. Well known as a place for New 40 | December 2012 /January 2013
Orleanian film aficionados to gather, the New Orleans Film Festival is quickly growing to reflect the growth of the film industry in Louisiana. The New Orleans Film Society has created an atmosphere for Louisiana natives and film professionals to mix. As for the upcoming year, there’s more than just the 2013 festival to interest the film faithful. “We have a lot on tap. We’re a lead partner on the Social Change Film Festival, a traveling festival that hits New Orleans November 28 through December 2. We also have Film-O-Rama, our spring showcase of independent and foreign films, and of course, we always have weekly screenings in the meantime,” says Pinder. “I’m looking forward to growing our reputation as a major contender on the film festival circuit. After the MovieMaker nod and this year’s fest, it definitely feels like we’re on our way.” To join the New Orleans Film Society, check out www.neworleansfilmsociety.org. S
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scene 50 YEARS OF BATMAN AT LSU by Susan Ross photos by Caitlin Barry
o promote the release of The Dark Knight Rises on DVD, Warner Bros brought six iterations of Batman’s luxury vehicle of choice to the campus of Louisiana State University. The Batmobiles were on display as tens of thousands walked the Baton Rouge campus before the LSU Tigers took the field that night against #1 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide. Cloistered underneath a blow-up Bat Cave were vehicles featured in the campy 1966 Batman television series that starred Adam West, Michael Keaton’s Batmobile from Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman and it’s sequel, Batman Returns. Val Kilmer’s wheels from 1995’s Batman Forever, George Clooney’s wheels from 1997’s Batman & Robin were also on site, along with The Tumbler, the version driven by Christian Bale in Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. S
JAMES FRANCO GOES GUCCI by Susan Ross
he super-talented, smokin’ hot James Franco. One of the busiest and most beautiful guys in show business. While he’s not making movies in Louisiana – the most recent including The End of the World with fellow thesps Emma Watson, Jonah Hill, Seth Rogen and Jason Segal and Homefront with Jason Statham and Winona Ryder - Franco is busy working on countless other projects, including hosting gigs at Saturday Night Live and The 83rd Academy Awards alongside Anne Hathaway. More recently, Franco was named as the face for Gucci men’s fragrance line, bringing him back to the Crescent City to shoot a short film to be projected in two Gucci stores as well as on the Gucci website. Franco shot the short to launch a new Gucci store, but don’t be fooled: this is no
ordinary commercial. In keeping with its New Orleans location, the storyline involves burlesque performers, dancers and is chock full of religious undertones. The story draws on the classic battle of good versus evil. Franco, who also directed the short, struggles in battle with his inner self as he is lured by both purity and sin. One of his many temptations in the short is New Orleanian model and actress Sonja Ray (right). The Fabulous Franco pulls off Gucci’s classic elegance with a contemporary flair. Many of his previous advertisement for the line features the alluring actor in perfectly tailored suits for Gucci’s Made to Measure service which allows consumers to personalize suits with fabric, cut and finishes. Others feature him in a simple tee shirt. It’s easy to see: the man can pull off anything and still look flawless. S
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CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN RESOLES NEW ORLEANS by Alexandra Fraioli
sk almost any girl about her dream shoes and the answer will be the same across the board - the iconic and much coveted red-bottom heels from premier designer Christian Louboutin. Some may gawk at the price for something that’s essentially a barrier between your feet and the sidewalk, but when you wear Loubs, you aren’t wearing shoes. You are wearing a work of art. The French designer makes time in his busy schedule to connect with those who don his creations and to hear their stories and suggestions for future pieces. Only participating in three or so visits per year in the United States, Mr. Louboutin recently visited Saks Fifth Avenue at Canal Place in New Orleans to meet and greet fans. It’s easy to see why he - being both French and an artist - would choose New Orleans. The culture, the cuisine and the people are unlike anywhere else in the world. Patiently waiting to meet and greet, fans were served champagne during their queue. Others drove up to thirteen hours for a chance to meet the genius behind these shoes. One young fan even skipped a day of school to have her first pair of Loubs signed. Louboutin signed pairs of shoes during his event in New Orleans, marking his insignia on the bottom of the right shoe only. As fans approached the man, who was reportedly under more security than the White House, Louboutin greeted them and started working
on a personalized design at the bottom of the trademarked red bottom sole. Each signature was truly a unique work of art. He crafted the design while visiting with his patrons, which included Lauren Kern of film industry payroll company Cast & Crew. S
SHANE HARPER MAKES THE ROUNDS WHILE IN TOWN FOR GOD’S NOT DEAD by Alexandra Fraioli
hen asked about their school day, students at The Dunham School in Baton Rouge were able to say, “I met a Disney star!” The multi-talented Disney kid Shane Harper is a recurring character on the hit show Good Luck Charlie, where he plays Spencer Walsh, the love interest of Teddy Duncan (Bridgit Mendler). Sadly disappointing for the girls of Dunham, Harper and Mendler are an item in real life. A singer, dancer, actor and musician, Shane Harper can do it all and do it well. Harper released his first studio album, selftitled Shane Harper, earlier this year. He also plays both the acoustic guitar and the piano. A natural vocalist, he had his early singing career with his church choir and also participated in community theatre and competitive dance as a youngster. Oh, and he has a black belt in karate. Yeah, I can do all that too. Harper’s current project, God’s Not Dead, is a Christianbased feature length film shooting in the Capital City. Pure Flix Entertainment is producing the film, set to be released in 2013. Co-starring with Harper is Hercules himself, Kevin Sorbo, and Harper stars as college student Josh Wheaton whose college professor former Superman Dean Cain. The film also includes a cameo by tests his faith during a philosophy course. This theme echoes the multiple Grammy-nominated Christian rock band Newsboys, throughout the film, as Christians views are challenged by others. whose single “God’s Not Dead” inspired the title of the film. S
MORE SCENE EXTRAS ON P.54 44 | December 2012 /January 2013
ABOVE THE LINE
GUZMÁN is The Aztec Warrior
by Micah Haley
veteran actor, Luis Guzmán has appeared in nearly eighty films and television shows, including Boogie Nights, Magnolia
and Punch-Drunk Love for director Paul Thomas Anderson and
Out of Sight, The Limey and Traffic for director Stephen Soderbergh. In 2006, he filmed Cleaner in Shreveport, Louisiana, where he befriended casting director Brinkley Maginnis, who now works for Scene Magazine. After previously filming Dreamer and Runaway Jury in New Orleans and the cult hit Waiting in Covington, Guzmán returned to New Orleans to star in Aztec Warrior, director Scott Sanders’ much-anticipated follow-up to Black Dynamite. On a hot, rainy afternoon, we discussed the making of Aztec Warrior, filming in New Orleans and how to stage a legendary April Fools’ Day prank.
46 | December 2012 /January 2013
ABOVE THE LINE
Luis Guzmรกn in Arthur
photo by Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros www.scenelouisiana.com | 47
ABOVE THE LINE Micah: You have worked numerous times with two of my favorite directors, Paul Thomas Anderson and Steven Soderbergh. What attracts you to working with them as an actor?
It’s a superhero kind of movie in a different way. And it’s funny. This is like a real crossover kind of movie. This is not a movie that’s being made just for Latin audiences. This is a movie that’s just going to capture the market across the board. Again, it’s a fun Luis: Paul is a very passionate story. It’s cool. One of my favorite writer. He has an amazing talent all-time shows that I used to for writing, and he’s a wonderful enjoy watching was Reno 911! It storyteller. As far as I’m concerned, was the stupidest show I’ve ever he’s a visionary of what I consider seen but it was funny. I really dug “big time” independent film. He their comedy because there was puts great crews together. You can’t so much improv in it. And I get to possibly do a great film without play a lot with improv here. I kind having a great crew. They really go of enhance everything that’s going hand in hand. I give him my biggest Guzmán with Adam Sandler in Punch-Drunk Love on. We were shooting a scene one props as far as his writing. Every photo by Bruce Bermelin day and there was this actor who movie that he’s directed, he wrote, and they’ve all been exceptional. was actually sitting in for the other actor. They actually asked him to For Boogie Nights, a few of the actors were nominated for Academy memorize the lines, and like on the second take he got like a dozen lines. Awards. I think Tom Cruise was nominated for an Academy Award He got up to the second line and he totally like blanked out. And for for Magnolia. Adam Sandler was nominated [for a Golden Globe] for me that’s opening a door. I just went through the whole scene without Punch Drunk Love. And of course Daniel Day Lewis won the Academy him saying a word and I made it work. They said, “OMG,” you know? Award for There Will Be Blood. That in itself just says a lot about his work. In this movie, I have blended two scenes together. I go up to Steve Soderbergh is an exceptional talent, especially when it comes to the director and say, “I’m just doing that just to save you that set getting behind the camera. He shoots his films. He’s a DP, editor, director. up for later. Maybe save you that cash so we can just keep moving He’s the full package, and a really easy-going guy. They are two different on. ” I’ve had a great time. We have a great cast. We have some really kinds of directors, of course, but exceptionally talented in what they do. famous actors and comedians from Mexico in this movie. My Micah: In Traffic, you play a law enforcement officer named sidekick Squinkle (pronounced skwink-lay), his name in Mexico Ray Castro, who insists on telling jokes to a drug trafficker while is Octagoncito. “Little Octagon.” He happens to be a professional undercover. I have to admit I’ve stolen the hurricane joke, and wrestler. He does not speak a word of English and I have worked with him diligently to translate everything so he understands what he is repeated it numerous times. saying in English. My biggest lesson to him was to not act… just be yourself. Because the script in itself, all the lines and situations, is funny. Brinkley: I don’t remember that joke.
Luis: Why are most hurricanes named after women? Most hurricanes
Micah: As a professional athlete, has he reciprocated by helping
Micah: Tell me about your new film, Aztec Warrior.
Luis: Well, I became Bruce Lee in three days. If there was a crash course
are named after women because when they come, they come wet and wild. But when they leave, they take your house and your car.
Luis: This is a comedy. It came to me two years ago. When I first
read it, I was pretty blown away by it because it was so funny and so original. It took them a while to get it together, and they finally got it together. Scott Sanders, who did such an incredible job doing this little movie called Black Dynamite, is directing this. And basically I play this wrestler, this lucha libre wrestler from Mexico, who was disgraced by his archrival in a match and ended up taking off his mask. And when you take off a wrestler’s mask, he “loses all his powers.” Spring ahead two years later. My sidekick-loyal-midget-friend has been looking for me. He finds me in my beat up car full of nothing but bottles of mezcal. He tries to get me back into the game. I don’t want to get back in the game, I’m done. But he’s really insistent and he sets me up with all these fights. I end up meeting this girl who runs a tire shop. Her family is being harassed by a neighborhood gang. I come to their rescue.
48 | December 2012 /January 2013
you learn the ropes as a wrestler? Helped with the physical part of your role?
in how to become a tenth degree black belt, I did it. In three days. I wouldn’t count on it to save your life, but enough to let you at least run halfway down the block. Then you’re on your own. If they catch up to you then, my man, yeah… let’s not even go there.
Micah: I’d be so afraid I wouldn’t be able to run three blocks. Luis: You better hope there’s a crack in the sidewalk that they trip over. Micah: The show has required a lot of physical preparation, though? Luis: I didn’t do any physical preparation outside of three days prior to the start of shooting. I had to learn some fight sequence stuff, but that’s it.
Micah: Are you a fan of wrestling in general? Were you vaguely
ABOVE THE LINE
Guzmán with Vanessa Hudgens in Journey 2: The Mysterious Island
photo by Ron Phillips/Warner Bros
familiar with what they were teaching?
Luis: When I was a kid, I loved wrestling. And then I had the biggest letdown
in my life when I found out it wasn’t real. I thought wrestling was real. I thought they were like beating the s*** out of each other. I thought the blood was real, I thought everything was real. Then, one of my boys explained to me, “No, dude, that’s not real.” And then I said, “Really?” Then my boy goes, “Bro, think about it. Who could take a beating like that and walk away from it?” I was like, “Really??” But you know, I think the best acting that is done is by soccer players. You ever watch a soccer match? You ever see when those guys fall down and they look like their legs have been broken in three pieces? Then five minutes later, they jump up and they start running around and stuff like that. That’s damn good acting! I think it’s overtaken wrestling. I think in my next superhero movie, I’m going to come back as a soccer player.
Brinkley: So this is maybe an easier role for you because you’re an actor. And that’s all wrestlers do anyway, is act.
Luis: I want you to know, Brinkley: I work really hard to not act. I had a
wrestling scene, and it’s like this: I put my arm out and the guy goes in the neck. It’s all trick photography. The guy falls down and I’m like the champ and stuff.
Micah: I ran in to Terry Crews a few days ago at a coffee shop. He
mentioned to me that he was in town working on Aztec Warrior, too.
Luis: Yeah, I did a scene with him. He could break me in two
seconds. But lucky for me, the script called for me to break him.
Micah: You’ve done a bunch of movies in Louisiana. Is there
anything that you enjoy coming back to New Orleans? Is there anything that you miss from Shreveport?
Luis: I think the best thing about Shreveport was Brinkley. We had a
really great crew of people, great actors you know. It was like really cool. It’s good to come back to New Orleans ‘cause I’m not from here. I shot here the year that Katrina hit. We were here in the spring after that shooting Dreamer. This is my first time back and it’s just interesting to see pockets of places that haven’t come back [after the hurricane]. I think the city as a whole has come back but you have some stuff here that hasn’t. But it’s hot here, man. It’s really hot and humid, but I’m just happy to be here. Again we have a great crew of people, a great cast and I’m having fun. www.scenelouisiana.com | 49
ABOVE THE LINE Micah: The film industry has
been an awesome thing for New Orleans in particular because right after the hurricane, there were big studio movies that came in. Tony Scott’s film Déjà Vu came in like a month and a half or two months after the storm. It was at the end of the year. And that put the stamp of approval on the city, letting the industry writ large know that it was possible to continue making movies in New Orleans. It helped bring a lot of people back very early and put them to work.
Luis: You bring in all these crews,
all these actors, all this equipment. You need houses, apartments and hotels that are rented. People spend their money here. That creates its own economy and it puts a lot of people here to work. I have some people in my crew here who say, “Look man I just wrapped a movie at five in the morning Saturday and I was working on your movie at nine on Monday morning.” In L.A., they don’t make that many movies anymore. L.A. is more of a TV town now. This is the new Hollywood. New Orleans is picking up the slack. Like I said, it’s good for the city. It’s good for the people here.
Micah: Prior to Katrina, you
Guzmán with Dane Cook in Waiting
line.” I’m like, “F*** you, man. Who the f*** do you think you are?” And everybody was like, “Oh, s***.” So then he goes, “Okay everybody, do your lines. Please don’t be a jerk and do his line.” I say, “Who the f*** are you calling a jerk? Do you know who I am? Do you know who I work with? This is what, your first movie, you little piece of s***? F*** you man! I’ll kick your ass!” Justin Long is like, “This guy was like my best friend this morning.” Ryan Reynolds is like, “Oh s***, oh s***.” Anna Faris is about to cry. You’ve gotta understand: we’re all in a small space, you know? And Rob said, “You know Luis? You know what!?” And I go, “You know what!? Why don’t you come outside so I can kick your ass right now? Come outside!” So I go outside and he follows me. We walk out the door. We were rolling on the floor. And the only guy that knew was the guy with the video camera. The producers are coming in, trying to diffuse it. Rob and I go out the door. We are rolling, we’re like pissing ourselves we’re laughing so hard!
Micah: That is hilarious. How was McKittrick as an actor? Was he convincing?
Luis: Oh yeah, he was great! So
he and I, we come back in and starred in Waiting, which Raddimus (Guzmán) prepares to demonstrate “the batwing” in Waiting we go, “April Fools!” And it was shot on the Northshore photo by Steven Teagle such a load lifted off everybody’s in Covington. It has become a cult favorite, especially shoulders. It’s in the outtakes on the DVD. When you can get other in the service industry. Was it as fun to shoot as it looks? actors at what they do as a craft, it’s great. They say, “Man, that was the best acting lesson I ever had in my life.” They were blown away. Luis: I had such a great time shooting that movie. My fondest memory of that movie was the joke that the director [Rob McKittrick] and I played on the cast. What happened was, [in the movie] a guy had problems Micah: The fun you guys had making it definitely comes across on going to the bathroom, and in one scene everybody’s in the bathroom. screen. It’s such a fun, quotable movie. When we were setting up that scene, it happened to have been April Fools’ Day. So the director and I were trying to figure out all day how Luis: Dude! You know how many times I’ll be walking down the street we were going to get the cast. We’re going back and forth and then we and [I’ll get approached about it]? I was in Vancouver a couple years back, realized, “Oh s*** we have that scene with everybody in the bathroom.” up at the ski resort that they have there. I’m walking with these two guys So we set it up. He comes in and he’s telling everybody what he and we’re talking. Across the street a guy yells, “Hey Luis! Batwing!” I wants them to do. He comes up to me and is like, “Oh, by the way I don’t even look because it’s like, I know what’s up, so I keep walking. The changed your line. I want you to say this.” I respond, “No, no, no, no, two guys that were with me, they stopped to look and they go, “Holy shit! no. I really like that line. Dude, I spent my whole lunchtime trying to Do you see what that guy just did?” I said, “Come on guys. We gotta go. memorize that line. Now you’re going to take it away from me?” Then Come on!” I never even looked. They didn’t know why. And I explained the director goes, “No, Luis. I really want you to do that line. Do this new to them, people just do crazy shit around me. Pretty amazing. 50 | December 2012 /January 2013
ABOVE THE LINE
Guzmรกn with Dakota Fanning in Dreamer
photo by Chris Buchinsky www.scenelouisiana.com | 51
ABOVE THE LINE Micah: It’s such a fun movie
to go back and watch now because almost all the actors in it have come back to the state to work on other projects. It just had such an amazing cast. Ryan Reynolds came back and did Green Lantern a couple years ago. Now you’re coming back.
Luis: Everybody comes back. There’s an industry here.
Micah: It’s been fun. It’s
kept me here. I would have definitely moved to Los Angeles if it hadn’t been for the film industry here.
Guzmán in Still Waiting
Luis: It’s been great. And like I said, if you guys could just
turn down the thermostat a little bit it would be even greater.
Micah: Have you been here in the spring or the fall? Luis: I’ve always shot here in the spring or fall, and this is my
first time shooting here in the summer. And it’ll be my last time shooting here in the summer. After today, we’ve got two more weeks and that’s it. It’s very ambitious. But because we use [a camera that] doesn’t require all that much lighting, it’s really helpful.
Micah: Have you had a chance to go hear some music? Or has this one just been all work and fight training?
Luis: Pretty much all work. I work every day. I’m just about in every
single scene. So I leave here, get something to eat, read my script, take a shower, read my script, fall asleep, wake up, read my script and come to work. That’s pretty much my routine. I gotta make it all look good and beautiful. Make it look fun at the end of the day. I’ve had my moments where I’ve been so exhausted I can barely go over my script. And then it’s like I feel like I’m slipping a little bit because I’ve got to learn everything. And I get there and I go over it, and I pull it out... take a couple of deep breaths and go for it. Micah: Just from our conversation here, it sounds like you have an appreciation for what’s written on the page. I would suggest that is not necessarily the case with some actors.
Luis: Absolutely. We won’t name names. There’s a great line in the
script where I come up against my old chauffer that I left behind in Mexico. In order to make ends meet, he became a wrestler, and he went by the name of Cockroach. So he confronts me because now he’s working for my archenemy. He goes, “You know why they call me Cockroach?” And I go, “Yeah. Because when they turn down the lights, you s*** yourself and you run under the refrigerator. That’s
52 | December 2012 /January 2013
what cockroaches f****** do.” I envision that when I do that, it’s really just the delivery of it. We haven’t shot that scene yet. The thing is, I throw so much stuff in here just to spice it up a little bit. Not too much, cause you don’t really want to do overkill, ever. I also have this great scene with Terry Crews. I run into my motel room and my sidekick midget is gone and there’s blood all over the walls. And they spell “R-E-D-R-U.” Redru. And so he gives me this whole speech, and I go, “Enough! Now prepare to die.” Then I say, “But before we do that, I want to ask you: I noticed you have a lot of Aztec Warrior merchandise here. And you have the very expensive but rare Aztec Warrior lunch box which goes on Mexico. com for 600 dollars, which by the way I collect all royalties from.” I threw all that stuff in there. It’s just the transition from “prepare to die!” Then it’s like, “By the way…” The tone is really sincere. That sincerity makes it so comical. A lot of that happens in this movie.
Micah: And the director gives you the freedom to do that? Luis: Oh yeah. We had a discussion yesterday. He said, “Dude,
this movie is turning out to be a whole lot different than what I envisioned. What you do and stuff and the magic that you put into it just really pumps it up even more.” Again, I’m not doing things to be ridiculous, to be slapsticky about it. I’m just really putting in a sincere performance that becomes really hysterical. Where my midget friend finds me, I go “Hey Squinkle, I’m sorry I ran out on you the other day.” The other day was two years ago. [laughs] That’s like the first thing I tell him when he finds me. He’s walking around with a photograph of me and he’s showing it to people before he finds me. And in the photograph, it’s a picture of me running away from paparazzi. “Have you seen this guy?” Like, “Yeah, that’s him in the car!” How can you know when he’s blocking his face? So you know, there’s like all these little funny really cool things.
Micah: Do you know what you’re doing next? Luis: I want to hide under a rock. Micah: Well, don’t hide for too long. We want to see you back here soon! S
Luis Guzmán’s next film is The Last Stand. Also starring Arnold Schwarzeneggar in his first lead role since leaving the California governor’s office, the film opens on January 18, 2013.
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fter Metallica’s tour de force on Saturday night at the Voodoo Experience, Scene held its annual invitationonly Halloween party at Maison Montagut in the French Quarter. Presented by Pelican Ice and the newly formed charity pub crawl NOLA Zombie, the exclusive party featured professional makeup effects by Illusion Industries. The Academy Award-winning company recently made its makeup appliances available to the public at www.illusiontransfers.com. S
Singer/songwriter Brooke Waggoner, Tessa Rowe and Laura Rockett
“Zombie Fat Amy” inspired by the film Pitch Perfect
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Actor Hunter Burke as Sheriff Rick Grimes from The Walking Dead
Aaron and Rachel Bayham
MORE SCENE HALLOWEEN 2012 www.scenelouisiana.com | 54
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Illusion Industriesâ€™ Adam Walls applies makeup to a zombie
The Zen Lunatic
56 | December 2012 /January 2013
Connor Manning as daredevil Evel Knievel
VOODOO MUSIC + ART EXPERIENCE 2012 by Charlotte Cox and Carol Gayle
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Held over Halloween weekend, the costumes of the Voodoo Experience are eagerly anticipated every year.
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ith winter in full swing, makeup artist Eric Vosburg and hair stylist Phoenix Rose offer advice on looking your best at cocktail parties in the cold and Scene’s New Year’s Eve party.
makeup: Eric Vosburg hair: Phoenix Rose models: Laura Flannery, Olivia Montgomery, Vanessa Barnfather
68 | December 2012 /January 2013
“Because there is less humidity, winter is great for straight hair. I started this look by using a thermal protectant (in this case, Kenra Blow Dry Spray, my favorite), lightly sprayed all over the hair. I then sectioned the hair and flat ironed it completely straight. Be sure to leave or add volume at the crown. Braids were added along the perimeter to spice things up a bit.”
“I really wanted to give Vanessa a fun but wearable look for a night out on the town. A smoky eye really brought the focus to this native South African’s stunning blue eyes. I applied MAC eye shadow in soft brown ($15 at maccosmetics.com) in Vanessa’s crease. By applying a color that is slightly darker than your skin, it helps the black eye shadow to blend effortlessly into your skin, preventing any harsh lines. Then I applied
Stila’s eye shadow in ebony to the whole lid. Next, I lined the eyes with L’Oréal’s Infallible eyeliner in carbon black ($8.48). To add a bit more fun to a basic smoky eye, I applied MAC’s Stars ‘N Rockets eye shadow ($15 at maccosmetics.com) to the lid and inner tear duct of the eyes. I then finished with Kevyn Aucoin’s lip gloss in Alurabliss ($27 at Make Me Up on Magazine Street). This blue-based lip gloss really helps tie the look together.” www.scenelouisiana.com | 69
Winter faces PHOENIX ROSE
“This is a style that will stand up against time and activity and still look great. The key to this is pin curls. These curls were achieved with a flat iron, but a curling iron will work just as well. Start by curling the hair in sections all over and pinning the curls while they are still warm, allowing them to cool, or set. Remove the pins and finger-comb the curls into place. Finish with a flexible hold hair spray. Be careful not to over spray the curls or you will lose movement. This look is great for winter weather when the wind tends to blow harder, because even if the curls loosen and the hair gets a bit windblown, you still have volume and shape.”
“Laura really imbodies the beauty and power of a 1940s starlet and I really wanted to bring that out in her with a powerful and seductive burgundy red lip, perfected skin and ‘come hither’ lashes. Red lips are always a timeless look that works for any occasion, but for the winter’s months, I like the idea of playing with darker reds, such as burgundy, ox blood or wine colors. For Laura’s makeup, I used Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Lip waterproof lipliner pencil in burgundy 9C and MAC’s lipstick in Viva Glam 1 ($15 at maccosmetics.com). A tip to help your red lips last all day is to fill in your lips with a lipliner and apply one coat of lipstick. Then blot and reapply your lipstick and blot again. This will make sure your lipstick has a strong base to last through anyone’s busy day! To add a bit more drama to this look, try adding half lashes just on the outer corner of the eyes and then apply a generous amount of mascara to the lashes. This will help the fake half-lashes blend in seamlessly with the real lashes. One of my favorite mascaras to use is L’Oreal voluminous carbon black mascara ($7.99 at loreal.com). Here, I applied Kevyn Aucoin’s Sensual Skin Enhancer in SX 4 ($45 at Make Me Up on Magazine Street in New Orleans) with a flat top brusher brush to give an airbrushed look to the skin. You may notice when wearing a strong lip that you might need a bit more blush to balance out the face. So don’t be afraid of applying a bit more blush than you normally would.” 70 | December 2012 /January 2013
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“Adding texture is always a quick, easy way to ‘dress up’ shoulder length hair. I recommend using a clipless wand to curl random sections. This will give your hair dimension without sacrificing length.”
72 | December 2012 /January 2013
“Olivia has really amazing eyes and I wanted to exaggerate their shape. The inspiration for this look came from the early 1960s, when the eyes became a strong focal point and the lips shifted from dark and bright reds to more subdued light pinks and flesh tones. I wanted to really evoke the feeling of the ‘60s but make it accessible for the every day person.”
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Winter faces PHOENIX ROSE
“Here, I wanted to show an easy transition from ‘play to night’ for midlength hair. The hair was brushed back into a ponytail and secured. From there, the already-curled, or textured, ends were sectioned, wound around my fingers, and loosely pinned into place in a random fashion. If the hair is too short to put in a ponytail, gather the hair to a central location and pin into place. Be sure to spray any flyaways for a sleek and effortless finish.”
“With makeup, it is really easy to change to whole look and feel with just a simple shift in colors. For Olivia’s second look, I applied a different shade of lipstick and shifted it from a nude lip to a soft pink. I applied MAC’s lipstick in Angel ($15 at maccosmetics.com). I also added a bit more blush in Kevyn Aucoin’s powder blush in Dolline ($37 at Make Me Up on Magazine Street). This really helps to warm up the face and give a beautiful flush look to the skin.”
“I wanted to make Laura’s already-curled hair more elegant. The curls already had a light mist of a flexible-hold hair spray (Sebastian Zero Gravity), which made it easy to manipulate. I chose to go with a mermaid braid because it would allow me to keep volume and movement in the hair. The braid was secured at the neck with a rubber band and then pulled apart for a loose, flowing effect. The curls at the ends were finger-pulled apart and lightly misted again with hair spray. Lastly, the curls were pulled to one side and rested over the shoulder.”
“This is a simple, everyday makeup look, focusing on enhancing the skin’s naturally beautiful and glowing complexion. First, I applied Young Blood’s Mineral Primer ($41 at ybskin.com) to prep the skin. I then applied Kevyn Aucoin’s Sensual Skin Enhancer in SX 4 ($45 at Make Me Up on Magazine Street). To add that beautiful, dewy glow to her skin, I applied MAC’s Cream Color base in Perl ($18.50 at maccosmetics.com). Then, I applied a bit of Kevyn Aucoin’s Creamy Moist Glow in Tansoleil ($24 at Make Me Up) to the apples of the cheeks to give a flush to the skin. To finish off this look, you can apply a coat of L’oreal’s Voluminous Carbon Black mascara ($7.99) and any shear coral or pink lipgloss.”
74 | December 2012 /January 2013
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I am making an independent film and I would really like to use a certain well-known song that I believe ties into the plot very well. What would be the most cost-effective and legally sensible way to do this? The simple answer is licensing. For those that are not familiar with licensing, a license is a legal mechanism for an intellectual property owner to grant authority for a specific use of their intellectual property. The license only represents a right for a specific use of the intellectual property and does not involve any transfer of ownership. Something else to be aware of in this type of situation is that there exist two separate and distinct copyrights within a recorded song. One copyright exists for the underlying musical composition, or the music and lyrics of the song. This copyright is usually owned by a music publishing company and/or the songwriter. The other copyright exists for the recordation of the song, which is typically owned by the recording company. Given that you would like to use a particular song for your film, that leaves you with two options. You can secure the appropriate licenses for a particular preexisting recording of the song. Or, you can hire another band to record a version of the song to be used within your film and secure the necessary licenses under this option. Now, it is appropriate to look into what are the requisite licenses under these options. The first essential license is a synchronization license, or sync license. The sync license grants the licensee the right to bundle the music together in timed relation with visual images or motion pictures to create an audiovisual work. This license must be acquired from the copyright owner in the musical work (usually a music publisher) and is typically licensed on a flat fee basis. The sync license is required for the use of any song that is not a new composition or in the public domain. The next indispensable license is known as the videogram license. This license is also negotiated with the music publisher,
76 | December 2012 /January 2013
and is used to allow the producer to make and sell videotape and DVD copies of the film containing the musical composition. In practice, this license is often merged into the sync license agreement in a separate clause for the videogram license. Also required is a performance license. This license allows the producer to show the film in all the other available mediums while satisfying public performance protections under copyright law. In the U.S. you do not need a performance license to show your movie in theaters, and most television stations will have a blanket license with music publishers for such performances, however you should obtain this type of license for viewings in foreign countries that might have dissimilar public performance protections, as well as those times when the film may be shown at public venues without any blanket license. Lastly, should you desire to use a particular preexisting recording of the song you will need to obtain a master use license from the record company that owns that version of the desired song. Simply put, this license allows you to use the master recording of your desired song in your film. When deciding whether to use a particular preexisting version or a newly recorded version of the desired song, the producer must weigh the costs associated with the process of recording the new version against the costs associated with obtaining a master use license for the preexisting recording of the song. Additionally, there are concerns with royalty rates should the song be included on a soundtrack in the future that must also be considered. No matter what the ultimate decision is, procuring the necessary licenses is the key. When these issues arise, a producer should consult an experienced entertainment attorney. S
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IN THE MIX
KENNY MORRISON’S Twisted Fiction by Jacob Peterman
ost people think advertising is deceitful. For me, it’s like cinema,” says Kenny Morrison, a filmmaker and veteran commercial director. “It is cinema. It’s an art. It’s a craft. It’s something that I apply all the rules of cinema to. And I try to always improve those skills.” “I’ve always liked to try different things. I get bored quickly so if I do too much of the same thing, I want a change,” says Morrison. “I have tried desperately [as a director] to remain a generalist because in the commercial business, they want to pigeonhole you. I’ve been lucky that I’ve had a healthy career and I’ve been able to work all over the globe on a number of really big brands. I did the Wrigley’s Doublemint twin commercials back in the day. I shot the Downy commercials with the Downy bottle falling into softness. Miller beer, AT&T, Advil. Many of the big brands.” A native of Louisiana, Morrison’s work over the courtesy of Twisted Fiction last several decades has carried him all over the map. “When the revolution took place in the Eastern Bloc countries back in [the early 1990s], they started bringing in American directors to do Proctor and Gamble-type work. I was shooting commercials in Prague, going to Warsaw to do casting and having meetings in London. I shot a lot in Spain anyway because I have production contacts there. I did BMW in Spain. We did European work and I've shot in Canada a lot, and Asia. And we used to shoot in Mexico all the time before the peso crashed.” Born in New Orleans, Morrison became interested in filmmaking while in high school, learning by shooting film on a Super 8 camera. After attending college, he knew he wanted to work in film, and hoped to direct features one day. “I got sidetracked,” Morrison remembers. “I worked on a feature, the sequel to The Legend of Boggy Creek. It was called Return to Boggy Creek. Dawn Wells was the star, Mary Ann from Gilligan’s Island. I worked on that film, worked on some documentaries and then I went to work for this production company that did all kinds of things, including commercials.” After literally shooting all over the world, Morrison is spending more time in the city of his birth as it experiences explosive growth. “I love shooting here. I’ve always thought of New Orleans as the most photogenic city in America. And I have shot in most cities in America. I enjoy shooting on location here because there is an architectural diversity that most people might not be aware of. And there’s a sense of character that looks good on film,” he says. “I’m
78 | December 2012 /January 2013
always trying to find new ways to photograph the city. I feel like I know New Orleans in a way a lot of people don’t because I was born here and I’ve lived here all my life, and I’ve been kind of looking at it in different ways. I think that New Orleans has layers. The fun part is getting under those layers and in between those layers.” “My local company is Twisted Fiction,” says Morrison. “The subline is ‘A narrative way of thinking.’ I like the idea that there’s a story behind everything. We tend to converse in stories. We tend to think in stories. We tend to put a storyline behind someone we meet on the street. If you’re just standing on the street corner watching people go by, it’s kind of interesting to give them a narrative. It’s funny how I don’t imagine myself as being in advertising, per se. I think of myself as a craftsman. I make films. They’re minifilms, they’re little mini epics. More goes into each second of a 30-second commercial than any second of a feature film for sure.” “As a director I could choose to live anywhere because I work everywhere,” he says. “But at my company, we work to try and bring business to New Orleans and Louisiana because we love shooting here and the tax credits are a big incentive to help get our clients to come here to shoot.” Morrison is also affiliated with Nola Pictures, which has offices in New York and a network of creative and production support throughout the world. “We have full production support, multiple directors of different niches. We have some European directors. We have agreements with service companies in Europe, in South America, in Canada, in South Africa, et cetera. It’s a global nexus and we’re always trying to bring that to bear on New Orleans. I choose to live here, and we try to take advantage of that global connectivity and bring work here.” While Morrison now finds many of the comforts of filmmaking in Los Angeles or New York available in his hometown, he remembers the not-distant past when this was not the case very well. “I remember the days where if one movie shot in Louisiana a year, that was a big deal. We used to talk about getting a studio built in Louisiana somewhere in New Orleans. It was always a pipe dream. It’s almost like waking up out of a dream now because Hollywood has come here. For the first part of my career we would bring all these national brands here, and it was like shooting on a deserted island. If you needed a lens that you did not have on shoot day, you were out of luck. If a camera broke, you were out of luck.
IN THE MIX
photo by Kelli Binnings
We brought in everything, usually from L.A. and New York. We had to bring in crew a lot of times. To this day, I still always have two cameras on set because it’s ingrained in me. Whether you’re shooting two cameras or not, you’ve got to have two cameras because what if one breaks? Though now, you can go across town and pick up anything you want.” In addition to continuing his commercial work, Morrison continues to hone his craft as a still courtesy of Twisted Fiction photographer. “My first love when I was young was still photography. I started out as a still photographer but quickly went into motion. It’s still a love of mine,” he says. “I like doing fashion and beauty a lot because it embodies the things that I hold dear when it comes to photography, which is the sense of design. And there is that element of fashion and of beauty. There’s the light element and the vibe, all the aspects of storytelling.” While doing a music video for an Irish singer/songwriter who
was about to make his debut to American audiences on The Late Show with David Letterman, Morrison was introduced to another band of Irishmen. “I recently did a book with U2 for their new album, No Line on the Horizon. One day that band, I tell ya, is gonna hit it big,” he jokes. “That’s what I told them. I said, ‘I’m here to make you guys famous.’ I got to hang out with Bono in Europe at his house in France and watched them record the album. I went to the concert and the after party. It was an incredible experience." Morrison’s company also does documentaries. “I did six short pieces for HBO right after Katrina that were six individual little [vignettes]. It’s a broad cross-section of people here who have been affected greatly by Katrina,” he says. “They had the premiere out in Vegas when Robin Williams, Whoopi Goldberg and Billy Crystal did Comic Relief for HBO.” Though his identity is as a commercial director, Morrison www.scenelouisiana.com | 79
IN THE MIX
photo by Kelli Binnings
still thinks about features. “Commercials suit me because the turnaround is three weeks as opposed to three years on a feature. But I still want to make a movie, I still want to do a feature,” he says. “I love science fiction and I love art house films and I like good, characterdriven pieces. So it would have all those elements. I am a big fan of originality. If I could make a film, however small, if it had a modicum of originality in it, I would be very satisfied as a filmmaker. I think of movies like The City of Lost Children and courtesy of Twisted Fiction Delicatessen. Everything about those films just reeks of originality.” “I’m a cinematographer and I work very quickly, so my film doesn't have to be expensive,” says Morrison, who is currently writing what he hopes will be his debut feature directorial effort. “I’m not really that interested in doing a big effects film or an action film. I’m not one of these people who wants to just be on 80 | December 2012 /January 2013
a film set, because I do that a lot. I want to make a film that means something to me. That’s been the most difficult part of writing a film: I have too many stories to tell.” “I think if I’m on my death bed and I haven’t made a feature film, that regret that will stand out and loom large over my life,” he confesses. “Hopefully it won’t matter at that point. Because I’ll have seen the light and realized there are bigger and better things to concern myself with. The truth of the matter is, as a filmmaker - and as someone who got in the business to make a movie, but got sidetracked by a very lucrative, nice career making television commercials and travelling around the world – I want to tell bigger stories. I keep coming back to the notion of telling stories.” For more information on the work of Kenny Morrison and his company Twisted Fiction, visit www.twistedfiction.tv. S
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ON THE SCENE
Scene Magazine & the New Orleans Film Festival present
A FILM FEST AFFAIR 2012
photos by Mark St. James and Whitney Huet
As the New Orleans Film Festival continues to grow in prestige and size, so does “A Film Fest Affair,” the single largest event of the week-long fest. Surrounded by sets from Spike Lee’s remake of Oldboy, festivalgoers and filmmakers once again gathered within the walls of SECOND LINE STAGES for Scene Magazine’s nowannual soirée.
Familiar faces around the crowd included director SPIKE LEE and much of the cast and crew of Oldboy, and actor OMAR BENSON MILLER, who was in town filming Homefront.
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ON THE SCENE
The cool fall night was filled with the electric soul rock sounds of THE HONORABLE SOUTH, led by the beautiful Ms. Charm Taylor, and DJ BRIAN BOYLES.
www.scenelouisiana.com | 83
ON THE SCENE
Scene Magazine & the New Orleans Film Festival present
A FILM FEST AFFAIR 2012
photos by Mark St. James and Whitney Huet
FORD FUSION, the festivalâ€™s marquee sponsor, offered two interactive opportunities to experience the environmentally conscious car, newly redesigned for 2013. The first, set up at the entrance to the party, offered patrons an opportunity to skip the line by hopping in a 2013 Fusion for an interview. The second presentation was a 2013 Fusion set against a green screen, allowing cameras on site to comp in party patrons to driving locations throughout the world.
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ON THE SCENE
www.scenelouisiana.com | 85
ON THE SCENE
Scene Magazine & the New Orleans Film Festival present
A FILM FEST AFFAIR 2012
photos by Mark St. James and Whitney Huet
The disaster recovery experts at the nonprofit CAN-DO.ORG offered insight into their international operation. 86 | December 2012 /January 2013
ON THE SCENE
Scene Magazine & the New Orleans Film Festival present
A FILM FEST AFFAIR 2012
photos by Mark St. James and Whitney Huet
NOLA ZOMBIE littered the red carpet with the walking dead. Benefitting the Louisiana SPCA, the newly formed organization brings together fans of dogs and the dead alike for pub crawls that will raise awareness of both the SPCAâ€™s work and the coming zombie apocalypse.
88 | December 2012 /January 2013
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ON THE SCENE
Scene Magazine & the New Orleans Film Festival present
A FILM FEST AFFAIR 2012
photos by Mark St. James and Whitney Huet
Producer Shaun Sanghani
90 | December 2012 /January 2013
THE UNSCENE Film School Redux This phantom hand nearly two years ago wrote of the need for greater strides in higher education. Though there have been some improvements to be sure, the state of need is greater still. As the recession rages in California, film professionals who want to work continue to find hope in Louisiana. In only a few short years, film in Louisiana has gone from experiment to permanent. And the prospect of constant work is increasingly enough for many to migrate. But for every film professional migrating south, future film hopefuls consider going to USC, NYU and Full Sail. A close assessment of their Louisiana options for an entertainment education reveals that local film schools better prepare students to be film critics than filmmakers. Though film criticism has historically been a valuable artistic contribution, the proliferation of online film critics and review aggregators such as Rotten Tomatoes have reduced the real world value of film criticism as a career. Soon-to-be college students are heading west in hopes of better preparing themselves for a career in film. They may return home to Louisiana in four years, better prepared to climb the ladder. But their tuition will be left in Los Angeles. There is no sector in Louisiana growing with the same ferocity as entertainment. There is no industry as attractive to the young minds we have historically lost to other states. With such substantial State investment in entertainment, educators have a duty to meet demand. - The UnScene Writer Submit tips to email@example.com. Anonymity guaranteed.
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Published on Dec 18, 2012