Quitting A Hollywood Job To Make Movies – Adam William Ward [FULL INTERVIEW]


Film Courage: Adam you came here in 2006? Filmmaker/Actor, Adam William Ward: Yes, I came
to Los Angeles in 2006. Yes my first day actually in town I got hired at
DreamWorks in post-production. My brother got me a job there so like day one I
like walked up the universal I was looking for DreamWorks then and then
like I went over to the right gate finally and they left me and I met the
head of post-production at DreamWorks Marsh Marc Graziano at the time and I
told them you know I want to make a filmmaker and all this kind of stuff and
they needed help at the time and he was like you know what you want to work here
for a while we need a little extra help and I was like it was like a 20 minute
conversation and then he hired me and I worked there for a couple months on
disturbia which was shooting at the time and then Indiana Jones is in
pre-production and then he also had what I said called it’s a movie with Ben
Stiller it’s a cone under Coen Brothers a the Farley Brothers yeah I was a
Farley Brothers movie and they did that movie too but anyway I was running
dailies and doing all kinds of stuff like day one and so it was kind of crazy
I just remember like in 1989 Ford Taurus running dailies around town like I had
the 35 millimeter projected film in my car
for Eddie Murphy’s raw and so I was like day 1 and I’m delivering this raw
footage you know of the 35 millimeter I’m like how they trust me already –
like deliver this footage like if this got lost you know they would never have
that 35 millimeter again so that was it was very interesting that was day one
for me and so I worked there for a while and then from there I ended up working
for Todd Phillips who did hangover road trip starts getting hot all those movies
and I I worked in the front office for them doing mostly script coverage so
like I did notes on hangover before hangover ever came out and yeah I was I
was like heavily pushing to cut one of the scenes in the movie they
cutting it later I don’t know if it was because of me or not but I was uh I
loved the script like they really want to do a different movie at the time and
I was just like what about hangover hangover every day I was I was so stoked
about hangover because it was such a Rijal script at the time it’s kind of
like a murder mystery comedy you know and I’d the time no one had ever done it
and obviously the movie was huge so a lot of people liked it so so you’d been
in town one day yes I was my first day in town and my brother got me a meeting
with Mike Rossi owner the head of post-production and it was just supposed
to be a general meeting and so I met in and talked with him and we talked for 20
30 minutes and he knew that I was new to town and he was just a really nice guy
and it was like we need help around here do you want to work here it was my
birthday too actually so I know it was October 18th 9 2006 so I know exactly
what day was so yeah and so you sorry you’d come from Hawaii or you’d come
from Pennsylvania I came from Hawaii I went to college in hpu Hawaii Pacific
University and yeah I came here to try to make it in show business so so you’ve
been in you’d been in LA 24 hours what was it like because I hear Hawaii
everybody’s very relaxed and it’s just a totally different culture then how was
that it’s very different but when you first get here it’s just so much
excitement you know like I think when you first get that to Hollywood in Los
Angeles you’re like there’s just this energy that like your dreams could come
true and like any turn of a corner you know you can meet somebody that could
give you a film as an actor or as a director or everyone around you is is so
important to you you know you don’t know who you’re talking to half the time and
so there’s just an excitement to it and later on I mean I still love the city
but it’s it’s very much a different feeling in a way of now that I’ve made
my my first feature while I got wasted it’s very much like I have a different
point of view of not so much like who are you and what can you you know I used
somebody can make my dreams come true I kind of have the feeling of like you
have to do it yourself you have to make it yourself and just
make it happen so it’s very different in that way and aside from your brother
putting in a good word for you what do you think help sort of seal the deal
because that helps but then that doesn’t know it gets people in the door doesn’t
always get the people a job or able to keep the job what do you think I think
you know I see it’s funny because a lot of people come here with a lot of
confidence come to Los Angeles and come to Hollywood with tons of confidence and
slowly and slowly I see that beating out of a lot of people you know they get
become people’s assistants so they whatever they do they get beaten down
like you’re not so special you’re not good whatever but I I’ve always just had
undeniable confidence and I think when you talk to people and you have such
confidence maybe they scratch their head and go
maybe you’re right or you know but you’ve got to have that confidence in
yourself and and the fact that you won’t give up or and I’ve always had that I’ve
always had like you say I can’t this can’t be done watch me do it
I’m gonna do it anyway so and that’s that’s been true with mario whole career
really i mean while he got wasted there was people that told me what the film
they said listen we shot while he got wasted for 70 grand by the way i look so
it looks like a studio movie we shot over 70 grand and there was people that
you know first i remember our first ad told me is to listen the script great
but you can’t do this okay you you way over your head you don’t have enough
money you have 38 locations you want to shoot in 22 days you can’t do this and I
just said well you’re not the right guy for the job
you know I’m doing this this is gonna get done and and we did do it we’d shot
38 locations in 22 days and it was very hard but we did it and I never gave up
and even though some people around me wanted to give up at times we we did not
give up and we got it done what do you think he told you that because I don’t
think that was possible in his brain to do that I don’t think and so many people
want to make films you know but then when you get in the thick of making a
film it’s very hard I mean I was sleeping two hours maybe three hours a
day for a whole month straight you’re
basically kind of killing yourself you know and I was acting in the film so you
know the makeup artist is like I can’t make you look like you’d looked on day
one because you’re killing yourself and it’s showing up on camera
you know the makeup can only do so much so it’s yeah you can’t have give up in
your head cannot happen at all it can’t be a possibility or you will give up in
this town like people that come here and say that I’m gonna give it a year and my
acting career you know or whatever I’m gonna give it a year and see where I’m
at know if you have a back-up plan you’re gonna fail there’s no backup plan
like there’s no possibility of everything else you need to constantly
be moving forward and thinking about how I’m going to achieve this goal and and
that’s all that that or you’ll fail or you’ll give up so you know if it takes
30 years I have no backup plan that’s all that there is so that’s that’s kind
of the personality you gotta have and the mentality you have to have what keeps you here now in Los Angeles
good question um I love the city and I’ve been lucky enough that I came here
my brother lived here but now pretty much my whole family has moved here so
now I have family here so it’s a little different my sister’s here my younger
sister and my parents are in Palm Desert so it’s not far so family in a way would
keep me here no matter what but I love Los Angeles it’s such a sprawled out
city there’s all these different pockets of cool things to do or hikes or
whatever so and the weather is beautiful so you know I don’t try to promote it I
know I never try to get more people to move here because so many people move
here already so but a lot of people move back back home yeah a lot of people give
up too and move away but because of the weather I feel like a lot of people move
to Los Angeles in general sure but no I I’m in the mecca of
moviemaking in the United States I mean that’s where Los Angeles is so I don’t
know what kind of trials and tribulations you’d have if you were in
Atlanta or somewhere else maybe there there’s enough people that I wouldn’t
you know you have enough film people but here I mean in my phone I have 10 DPS I
can call directors of photography Rian calling they own a camera in an amine so
it’s like here there’s so many people that are making films there’s so many
people to own cameras it’s really saturated so to get a project off the
ground off the ground it’s a lot easier to get it off the ground as to where in
middle of America do you know anyone that owns a red camera or Aria Alexa or
any of these kind of cameras it’s probably really hard to find somebody
that owned was owns one in like Nebraska or something so here you’re in a bar you
probably somebody in the bar why don’t your camera I mean it’s just so it’s so
saturated in that way so hopefully they’re sober enough to operate it but
yeah but do you have a goal list like do you have a certain amount of things that
you know by this date I want to have them completed I mean I want to make 30
movies in my life it’s whatever inspires me really I mean
I have in my phone I have ideas for movies that go on and on I mean I must
have 20 or 30 ideas for features some are fleshed out and some are really raw
just a one or two sentences but I also have a TV show like I did so I came here
and I work for DreamWorks and then worked for todd phillips and then I
realized it’s funny because I realized that people around me had want to be
directors or they want to be some position in film and they weren’t doing
it yet and I was like how long have you worked here and oh I’ve been doing this
11 years but I want to be a film director and I was like so I could be
you in 11 years I was like yeah I got a stop so what I left Todd Phillips his
office I was like I want to act interact so I went to acting school and I started
acting in every possible thing I could I did 11 short films in 2009 and then I
was a lead in three independent feature films in 2010 and when I saw the
independent feature films I realized they weren’t good enough and I thought
to myself I have to get behind the camera if I really want to make my
dreams come true and I always planned on getting behind the camera anyway
eventually but it just kind of pushed me to do it sooner so I thought I was just
gonna produce an act and so I put I managed to raise the money together to
shoot a TV pilot and I was gonna produce we had a director and everybody the
director pulled out and it was his script so I told the money people hold
on I’ll write something else and we can shoot that so I ended up writing three
guys in a couch which is a TV pilot that I wrote and and ended up directing
because I couldn’t find the director everybody couldn’t see the vision that I
had so I ended up directing it too so I acted and directed and wrote it and we
shot it in 2011 it’s actually on Amazon Prime you can go watch it on Amazon
Prime and it’s for free on there and it’s a 20-minute pilot it’s a comedy
pilot I kind of I love Seinfeld growing up and so it was kind of nice
version of Seinfeld you know my best version of it I guess that I could do
and it’s just about three guys trying to rent out their couch for to make rent so
I mean the whole episode just couch interviews they’re interviewing people
to rent the couch so that was the pilot episode and I have god I have in my
phone like 50 episodes of that show I just kept writing ideas for that show in
that Jo Jo so hopefully I do another show and use all those ideas eventually
but I did that TV pilot was the first thing I ever directed and then I ended
up from that pilot someone at Fox saw it and Fox called me and it was like hey it
was a subsidiary of Fox but it’s on the Fox lot called me and it was like hey
we’d really like to develop a new show with you like this was really good for
your first thing so let’s let’s develop something else so I came in every week
for like eight or nine months developing new ideas with them for new shows and
eventually settling on a show called parole officers which is about a guy who
gets arrested and he gets to parole officers that are gonna help him change
his life background but he gets he got falsely arrested for drugs so he really
has no problem with drugs and the two parole officers are completely crazy
that take over his life and just totally destroyed even more so we shot that into
that well hold on rewind Fox ended up scheduling it for me to do a table read
they were like we’re gonna give me a million dollar budget to do the pilot
all this kind of stuff and then they ended up pulling the plug and so the day
before the table read they were like we have something similar now we’re not
going to shoot this anymore what they did not know is every time I
would come in with a script or an idea we’re not an idea but a script I was
copy writing it so I are I knew that I owned the copyright on the show so okay
you have something similar but you’re not gonna steal my idea so I was like
heartbroken for a while I mean it’s hard to get over was eight or nine months you
know of me my friends and everyone I’m doing a show
with foxy didn’t read so for me it was like it was very heartbroken when it
didn’t happen but then I was like you know what I’m gonna shoot myself
so three guys on our couch we shot for five grand at the time on the red
cameras so this I actually ended up shooting for five grand as well it’s a
27 minute pilot that’s also on Amazon Prime now parole officers and so I ended
up raising the money independently and we shot that TV pilot as well in 2013
and then from there there was I ended up directing two short films for friends
and then it was like it’s time to do a feature so that’s when Wally got wasted
got made so I’m hoping we can go back to when you worked at Todd Phillips’s
office and at what point did you have that like wow I could be this person
here or this person here and they seemed happy with their job maybe not maybe
they are but I don’t want to have that be me how did you like what can you kind
of take us through how long before you left I think in the beginning I think in
the beginning it was just so exciting to be there I mean like Angelina Jolie
would come in the office you know like Angelina Jolie was in the hallway and
I’m like oh there’s a pretty girl in the hallway and then she’s standing out
there for a while I’m like maybe this woman’s lost you know I’ll go out there
she was pregnant at the time this pregnant woman’s in the hallway like
maybe she’s lost so I went in the hallway I’m like hey you okay like you
lost and of course once I get in the hallway I’m like oh I’m talking to
Angelina Jolie she’s like no I’m just waiting I’m gonna go into a meeting
upstairs and I just wanted a moment by myself and I was like okay no problem
you know I walked back in the office she’s right on the other side of the
class to me you know and there’s no one else around
so of course I’m like oh you know Angelina Jolie is here on the computer
you know telling the office and then like the guy played Hellboy at the time
he was coming in the office like and I met so many people coming in the office
that we’re making movies and actors and so in the beginning it was just so
exciting to be there you know on the post side of things I never would meet
movie stars I mean I met Steven Spielberg in that but I wouldn’t meet
like Angelina Jolie at DreamWorks at post-production they just don’t go there
but there was just so exciting I think it took a while for the Excite
– we’re off because I was doing script coverage on like three scripts a day
they would expect three scripts a day for me to read and do coverage on them
and and I’m a slow reader – so it wasn’t easy flurry but constantly trying to
break it down and write a you know a one-page synopsis of the whole movie and
and greenlight it or not greenlight it like if you didn’t get through me the
people above me never read it so that’s how it would work so if I don’t like
your script the person above me doesn’t like the script it’s never gonna read
the script you know and then on top of that it was just kind of crazy to me in
a way because these people have agents their managers they’re up but if you
don’t get through the guy at the front desk you don’t get to Scott Budnick at
the time where Todd Phillips or anyone else so I’m literally like
green-lighting someone’s life or not but if I send it up the ladder and it’s not
good my now I’m not considered a very good script coverage guy so you’re bone
my own ass is on the line so it was very interesting at the time I think it took
three months before the excitement of it all war of everything kind of wore off
and I started asking more questions you know and Todd Phillips assistant at the
time was his assistant for like nine years and I found out he was a film
director and I saw some commercials he shot and some other stuff and he was
like yeah I want to be a film director and I was like but you’ve been his
assistant for nine years like clearly he’s not gonna help you make a film you
know so he’s not gonna help me make a film I gotta go make a film out on my
own so that’s kind of the epiphany that I had that no one here if you’re not
doing the job that you’re supposed to be doing they can’t see like something I’ve
learned in Hollywood since I’ve been here people don’t see potential it’s not
something that they see it’s either you’ve done it or you haven’t done it
it’s very rare that someone can see potential of what you’ve done
like there’s no excuses it’s like you’ve even they’re made in a phenomenal movie
or you’ve made a mediocre movie and then they think you’re gonna always make a
mediocre movie so or I guess in any position that you’ve done they could
they don’t see potential like oh you had a really good moment here or there or
your budget you didn’t have enough money they don’t see the excuses it’s either
it’s good enough or it’s not why do you think that is do you think it’s because
there’s just everything goes too fast and there’s too much money on the line
they don’t have time to like nurture something or I think it might have been
different back in the day they might have nurtured people more back in the
day I mean like all the studio’s now are corporate I mean like Viacom you know
like all these big companies owned the studios it’s not really owned by an
individual anymore back in the day paramount was it
paramount I think was owned by a guy that would go to all the premieres with
a lion I mean it was one person’s decision and a few people belong and I
think in was that the 90s or something I mean all the studio’s got bought up by
big corporate companies everything’s powered by money so since everything is
powered by money are you gonna take a chance on someone who’s already
delivered or someone who has potential I mean if your ass is on the line you’re
gonna go with the safe bet so part of me understands that but I think also it
takes a very special person to see potential you know I don’t think
everyone can see potential it’s about is that it’s almost a rare skill compared
to have the talent like only some people are very very talented some people only
have that one gift of seeing talent – and half the people that I meet that are
at the top still they don’t have that gift like they shove 20 40 million
dollars in advertising on a movie in the movie Maibaum well somebody else might
have been able to see that it was gonna bomb but they couldn’t see it but they
have the title of the head of the studio or whatever so it’s just interesting to
see how certain things happen and I know people in positions that tell me all
kinds of stories were you know I’m like really I saw the trailer – that I have
no idea what that movie’s about and it’s a two minute trailer like if I don’t
know what your movies about at all and it’s a two minute trailer it’s a really
bad sign you know and you’re putting 40 million dollars in advertising that
blows my mind but anyway can we go back to your script
reading days first off what qualify someone as a script reader like how do
you how do they know you’re ready to be doing coverage it’s so funny nothing
nothing qualified me at all I got the job and they started shoving scripts in
my hand I had no qualifications for that whatsoever and that’s the truth I got
better as I went like I’m sure my first synopsis was kind of like what the hell
is this but I’m doing three a day so eventually
I’m getting better and better and better and that’s the thing too like nothing
nothing qualifies you in this industry like if you want to make films if you
want to act whatever you want to do there’s no qualification people were
like it’s not like every other job and so but at the same time the problem is
the whole world doesn’t it is the same when it comes to experience that’s the
difference it’s not the same as a qualification as oh I went to Harvard ah
oh of course you’re qualified to do this job or not and it’s more about oh you’ve
done 15 movies I’ve seen that you have the qualifications in the way that I put
a camera on you and you’re not going to get nervous you know I mean you’re gonna
deliver and and all that kind of stuff it’s very different in that way and
really the people I see succeed other people that never give up and keep keep
learning and getting better and better and better and and it’s very rare to see
that because certain people get to a certain age and then when I have babies
they want to do certain things and certain things are pulling them in
different directions and you know it’s very hard to keep trying to do the same
thing if you haven’t hit the ideal of what you you know imagine but a lot of
people come here and say I’ll give it a year like I said before but it’s like
would you if you wanted to be the CEO of Apple would you give it a year because
that’s what this is if you’re like the lead in the TV show you’re a CEO of that
company now you’re the face of that TV show everyone is putting millions of
dollars behind you so you better be good really good you know and have no work
your way up and and and you know be the CEO of that company because that’s what
you are at that point so that’s you know and the same thing with the director in
a movie like if you they give you 20 or 40 million dollars or 100 million
dollars to make a movie I mean the money speaks for itself you’re a CEO of that
company you’re completely in charge of making
that a good movie or a bad movie at that point so it takes time to get that good
and to get people to believe in you you know so you didn’t have like sort of the
qualifications that you thought you would have had to have been a script
reader or you were just surprised that they entrusted you um it was it was
mind-blowing to me because before that point we would me and my brothers
writing scripts back in Oregon when I had no connections whatsoever and we
would meet a guy that could get it to somebody else I was now on the other
side of it all reading the scripts and I realized when I was writing him they
were handing it to the intern that has absolutely no qualifications it might
just not like my script no you then mostly everyone reading a script has no
qualifications whatsoever they read it then if they like it because of their
opinion it goes up the ladder with someone else who has more experience
than what else has more experience and eventually maybe someone who really can
look at a script and dissect the whole thing but you have to get through all
these other layers of people that really don’t know what they’re doing so you
better it better be so good that they read it and are just so intrigued by it
but it also can just be you ran into the right people they’ll write three people
that loved your script or loved your idea or whatever so no mostly everyone
reading a script has no qualifications in the beginning at a studio so the
bottom layer people have no qualifications and so would you ever
stop reading a script or you had your job was to read it all the way through
were you doing three scripts a day so I mean if I read and it’s just horrible
the first 20 pages I’m gonna try to sum up the script the best way possible I’ll
go read the last 15 pages and most of the people in the office would tell me
that they say like somebody in there I remember was like just read the first
ten in the last ten decide if you like it and then you might read it but
otherwise that’s all the matters like if it’s not good they’re like get rid of it
you know so yeah so I ended up doing that some times and I felt bad for
people you know but if it was bad it was bad you know I mean that’s the thing
like when you have a stack next to you this 20 scripts am I really gonna not
everyone’s gonna get an opportunity so first 20 pages there’s no bad the whole
thing has to be amazing so the first 20 pages are bad will then
your scripts done it’s not gonna get to the next level so and actually now that
I’ve made a film distribution companies tell me like that first 10 minutes of
your movie better be amazing like because people will turn it off on these
streaming platforms so you better put a lot of your budget in that first 10
minutes have a chase see and have a gun scene have whatever captures them high
drama you know something to drag that audience in and capture them you know
because everybody’s attention span is so short nowadays so yeah and then what was
coverage like if you even if it was just the first ten in the last ten how much
like what are you filling up on a piece of paper of coverage what was it like so
I wouldn’t actually write on the script I would just write a one-page synopsis
and try to basically make an outline of the script really if you did coverage on
your own script you’d be saving people a lot of time to be honest with you
because Hollywood people want your movie in one sense and then if they’re
intrigued by the one sentence they’ll want to read a paragraph so if you write
one sentence it sums up your movie great then write a paragraph that sums up your
movie great then have a one-page synopsis that sums up your movie better
and then have the script and if you handed that to somebody they would love
you to death because and you can master getting each one of those great because
otherwise the interns gonna run white write your one-page synopsis when you
could have done it yourself in a way or your one-liner or your one paragraph or
whatever so that’s kind of how it is and so then you got the hangover it landed
on your desk or someone else already loved hangover I didn’t I didn’t green
liked hangover they already had hangover they liked hangover that was one of the
two scripts that they were developing at the time and they were like it was that
and another script called manwich and when they were like these are our two
movies that were gonna make check them out eventually but at the time all the
excitement was over the man which movie’s not over the hangover
and that was the next movie they’re gonna make next not hangover and I was
constantly like and maybe Todd always knew he’s gonna do hangover I don’t know
I wasn’t really talking to Todd that much I mean he came in the office and
once in a blue moon you know Scott Budnick was his partner at the time and
so I had a lot more interaction with him and for me when I read it it was just
you know it was very funny and it was it was a page-turner because it’s a murder
mystery they’re trying to find their friend so it was all solid it was good
and someone else actually wrote that script and then Todd and his partner
rewrote that script so they didn’t actually write the first draft of it so
and they went on I think to do some other movies and stuff but yeah so then
eventually you saw that you could become that guy or that girl and you’d be
making a nice living but you wouldn’t be doing exactly what you want to do did
you plan to get out or was it one day where you just throw a bunch of papers
up in the air and walked out I what happened no no I mean I was only at each
place for like three months anyway and both of the places I mean both places it
was it was kind of a short-term thing anyway so it wasn’t like I had to go
home leaving it was kind of like wow the time is up that you were supposed to be
here anyway so that was nice in a way it didn’t I didn’t get promoted you know I
mean like oh yeah it’s very hard for people to turn down money when you first
get here so a lot of these people it was like oh I know I mean 50,000 oh now I
got a hundred thousand now you got two hundred thousand I’m making three
hundred thousand a year I have a wife how am I supposed to leave this job you
don’t I mean your money dependent on that job and I’m lucky that an offer me
position because I might have tried to embrace it you know which a lot of
people do embrace their nine-to-five jobs and give up on their dreams and I’m
lucky that I was raised by my father and and my mom and my dad always instilled
in me you can do anything you want to do you just have to go for it and not take
no for an answer so that’s that’s kind of my mentality with life you got it to
go do it did you see that in him and my dad my dad actually was a musician back
in the day and he he was almost the lead singer of Aerosmith when I
Smith aegyo was having drug problems and stuff and there was a guy named Arthur
man basically that put a contract in front of my dad and was like I want you
to perform in every club bar stage from here to China and my dad had
unfortunately him my mom was pregnant at the time and he was he decided to and he
had a real job and so he gave it up and he became a family man really and the
the same contract Arthur man gave it to Bon Jovi so Bon
Jovi ended up becoming Pancho via my dad ended up being a debt and and shortly
after unfortunately my dad got in a bad car accident and so he ended up being a
stay home dad and my mom worked and so my house is very reversed I guess in the
80s of the more people the mom stayed home well my dad was the stay of dad so
it was very different in that way and kind of crazy though cuz he trained my
sister how to sing and so my sister is easy ward she’s a big-time singer and so
you know the next generation still made it as a singer she signed to Hollywood
Records which is Disney and she’s working on her third album now so it
kind of he passed up his music dream but she accomplished it so it’s kind of nice
to see that full circle for him you know so did you see the Jim Carrey
documentary which one I saw one where he did the man on the moon he’s on about
that one yeah and he type ritty sure he talks about his dad I think his dad was
he did talk about his dad yeah I remember his dad so his dad gave up his
dreams to be a comedian in the Jim Carrey documentary and he did the 9 to 5
and then the 9 to 5 that was the steady job laid him off so he realized at that
point that there was no safe bet and that is true man it’s completely true I
see that all the time with people that they really hold onto their nine-to-five
job but nothing’s guaranteed nothing’s guaranteed so it’s like you gotta take
chances you gotta you know that but that’s life people you know you gotta
make mistakes too and that’s why a lot of people I know so many filmmakers that
aren’t willing to do their first feature because they’re too scared to make a
mistake you know it’s like no you got to make it
if you fail you fail or if you make a movie that’s not the best you can do
great learn from it and make another film but I know more than one director
that is phenomenal that has never done a feature you know and I’ve known them for
ten years you know do you think it’s the money aspect I could see why that would
be scary but what do you think it is I think people have all kinds of excuses
you know I mean I think money is kind of usually the number one excuse I don’t
have enough money or I can’t get enough money to make the the feature but well I
mean what are you doing to try to get the money you know there’s that aspect
it a lot of them go I don’t have the right script and I’m not a script writer
you know a lot of that kind of stuff and that’s one of the reasons of while I got
wasted it was like Seth my writing partner seth Himes basically he wrote a
script and he came to me and I didn’t really particularly like it I liked the
first 20 pages and I was like the first 20 pages was slightly similar to while
he got wasted and I was like I thought I really thought the movie was gonna go in
this direction because in the first three pages it’s about three guys that
accidentally killed somebody and then the movie will win a totally different
direction and I was like I really thought you were gonna kind of reamp
weekend at Bernie’s and put hangover together and kind of do this like new
kind of comedy movie because that’s what we ended up doing and he was like no and
after he was heartbroken for a while because I I told him my honest opinion
he came back and was like well let’s write the idea that you have and so that
was like 2014 and so we were living together at the time we were roommates
and I laid out the whole movie in one night with him and I came up with the
structure of it and then he didn’t and we didn’t end up writing it he ended up
moving out later and then like six months later he came back and he wrote a
first draft and like a day or two because he’s a very fast writer and
there was like one scene in the first draft which was the drive-thru scene in
the movie that was phenomenal and which was great because I could literally he
did my outline though so it had the correct outline but it just wasn’t as
good as it needed to be yet but it was nice because I always try to stick on
the positive because any artist is very sensitive usually and so I was like
listen this is phenomenal but the drive through scene is amazing and the whole
movie needs to be as good the drive-thru scene so we need to do
rewrites so then we did then we’d ended up doing rewrites for about eight or
nine months to a year on the script and and getting it to where we thought it
was strong and then we ended up trying to get you know I had enough connections
in Hollywood that I was trying to send it to anybody that could help me make it
at the time which is where mostly every filmmaker
ends up dying because they’re trying to hand their project to somebody else to
help make it and that’s usually fallen on dead ears so we did that and there
was one studios talking about making it and some other stuff it was just talk
and eventually I said you know what we can’t keep doing this I got I let’s just
do it ourselves you know so we ended up raising the money ourselves selling
units to the movie for a certain dollar amount you owned a percentage of the
movie and I was gonna sell units to anybody I could sell units to I sold
them to doctors I sold them to dentists I sold them to somebody in France I sold
them to somebody in Mississippi I sold them anywhere I could sell them and talk
to people and you know talking to people and convince them to hand me a check is
never easy but I always tell people I’m one of the luckiest people you ever meet
and people seem to like me and trust me so I’m lucky in that aspect but I
delivered I delivered the movie like I promised I would so we raised the money
took like a year maybe a year and a half to raise the money some not all the
money we wanted to but 70 grand well 70 grand yes but Seth my partner
actually was coming up with 40 of that probably so we only raised like 30 of it
and unfortunately Seth was in a bad business deal and I actually did not
know that so I was like we have the 70 grand we can start so I did all the
casting in the movie already I found all the locations we found I found 38
locations for free in Los Angeles it’s like unheard of right how do you do
that meeting well we have drive-throughs we have grocery stores we have festered
restaurants we have nightclubs it took time you know and I didn’t want to put
dates down for the film until I found locations and found all my actors did
not want to have a date because I was working every day on it any
I didn’t need a time to like push me I was working on it every day so I didn’t
put a date down for the film yet but I would every location we needed I would
go out there and it was a fast-food restaurant I’d walk into every fast-food
restaurant I could and be like hey can we use this space to shoot you know I
can I speak to the manager and talk to them chains basically would all turn me
down it’s a corporate decision so I learned very quickly I need to find
mom-and-pop places mom and pop grocery stores mom about fast food places
basically I need to be able to talk to the person that’s making the decision
and not have a million you know lines to get to who I need to talk to and it was
just convincing people with passion really and it was my first feature my
butt was on the line and I think they saw how much excitement I had and a lot
of people just agreed to help me and and then sometimes it was a connection
through somebody else and you know at the grocery store was a connection
through Seth it was a friend of his from college who knew somebody who owned a
grocery store and they gave us permission to shoot there and then we
went there on the day and they didn’t know who we were
you know somebody didn’t even tell him but they saw the camera in the crew and
they were excited and they ended up letting a shoot there I don’t even know
if we need a permission to shoot there because they didn’t know who we were and
we shot the grocery store when it was open so it was like well my actors were
joking and that we have up a 35 minute documentary on YouTube actually people
can type in wall-e got wasted behind the scenes and or pop right up it’s the 35
minute a little documentary about how we made the film but one of the actors in
the documentary is like live theater you know because there’s homeless people
walking by there’s regular people walking by in the middle of the shot
when we’re shooting you know but we made it work you know and yeah so just
convincing every location to let us shoot there and some of these locations
would back out the day before because it would be like like the fast-food
restaurant was like I need to come there tomorrow night between said oh you’d
come after you closed we closed ten I said okay he said well how long
you need to be here he’s thinking I need to be there like an hour you know no we
need to shoot until the Sun comes up like I need as much time as possible so
normally we’ll try to shoot 12 hours but I have the Sun so we’ll shoot from 10
p.m. to a 5 a.m. and he’s like oh I have to stay or two or five hey it happens
like he immediately was like I don’t want to do this anymore and I was like
listen you you can’t bail on me like if you bail on me I have nothing I’m
completely screwed so I would convince him to stay basically and that’s that
would happen a lot so you know rewind all the way back to Seth getting that
money stolen from him I that happened so I thought we were shooting the movie for
70 grand and and to rewind Seth had a business Seth was gonna put in 40 grand
stole that 40 grand so he didn’t know until the first day of shooting so
basically the whole first day of shooting you see photos and videos of
him and he’s you could see he’s like having a nervous breakdown it’s like
eyes like half open and you know because he has to us to tell me that he lost all
that money and so we have our first day of shooting and we finally get back
because he moved back into my apartment to shoot the movie and he comes in my
room after like 14 hours of shooting of the day and he goes he just completely
is like is destroyed and he’s like I lost all the money we haven’t shut the
movie down and I was like Seth I got to tell you there’s nothing in the world
that can stop me from shooting this movie at this point like no we’re not
gonna stop I used a 30 grand and we’ll put the rest on credit cards
me and you will open credit cards I’m gonna finish the movie put everything we
possibly can on credit cards but we will not stop the movie and he would here in
my room was like we’re gonna shut down the movie I’m gonna move from away from
Los Angeles and I’m done with this dream I’m never gonna do it again and I was
like no you’re gonna finish your dream and ever gonna drive forward and I
wouldn’t let him quit I was like we have to do this and so that’s what we did we
put the rest of the movie on put 40 grand or something on credit cards and
30 grand we used to pay the crew and the people we needed to pay it and we
finished it so yeah you would said 30 feature films is one of your goals
um that’s in my head I know that I want to do a lot of movies III don’t have a
set at 30 and my you know I say that to people so they understand that I’m doing
this for the rest of my life and I’m gonna make a lot of movies and I think
it’ll get easier and easier so eventually I might make a movie a year
you know I mean but it’s one of my team around me and my finance ears and all
these kinds of things are moving faster you know now it’ll be it’ll be in the
beginning it’ll be less movies because it’s harder to make a movie now you know
it’s harder to raise the money it’s harder to you know find the right crew
and all that kind of stuff but as I make more and more things there’s certain
crew members that I’m like yeah I’ll use him every time as long as he’s available
you know I’m gonna use the same script supervisor I want to use the same you
know gaffer I want to use whatever so you you get a team going on as you make
more and more things and that’s part of the learning too you know because when
you’re on a movie everyone’s sleep-deprived you know I
mean everyone’s it’s rough it’s it’s a rough situations everybody’s underpaid
and overworked so you see people’s true colors some
people lose it some people get angry some people curse and you really don’t
want it affects the movie you know you really don’t want negativity on a set it
spreads like wildfire I’ve been in enough movies to know
once someone person starts complaining other people start complaining and then
they start making in front of the movie and then the whole thing goes shitty so
I try to get rid of negativity on my set and hopefully I can fire the person or
get rid of them if it’s my movie and just get rid of them because it’s like
well if you don’t want to be here you should just go you know and replace them
I had to replace had to kick one person off my set and I’ve only had to fire one
person in my career so I’m lucky that way but I try to vet people pretty well
but sometimes when you’re in the middle of it too it’s very hard to get rid of
somebody you know in the middle of making a movie try you know if you’re in
the middle of a war you can’t exactly replace the guy shooting the gun next
year if he’s bad so you just got a good role with it sometimes but then you
won’t use that person again you’d use somebody else because keeping your cool
and having a positive attitude is so so important well and there’s a lot of
people that love to in the quote vein of good advice tell
you things and you’re never sure what their angle is there’s a lot of agendas
here and so I think that I find it interesting that you had someone tell
you that you couldn’t do the film and they were just quote trying to be honest
with you and maybe they were but were you able to then kind of like brush that
off and keep going or is it kind of fuel you and chip on your shoulder a little
bit I think anyone who’s gonna make it in this industry like people telling you
you can’t do it has to be your fuel because you’re gonna hear that a lot if
you’re an actor if you’re director whatever position you are especially the
the more higher up creative positions people are gonna doubt you and if you
let that discourage you you’re not gonna get to where you need to be and even if
you believe some of the things they say you have to learn you have to admit to
yourself that you’re learning you’re always learning to get better you know I
mean I’ve seen interviews of Steven Spielberg he says he’s still learning
you know I mean so everybody’s learning as they go and take it easy on yourself
you know in my opinion you know while he got wasted people seem to love the movie
and they laugh a lot but is it the best movie I’m ever gonna make I hope not I
hope I get better and make even better movies you know and everything that I
learned on this movie I can take to the next movie you know so do you have a
barometer for when you think that you’ve quote-unquote made it that’s a good
question I think a lot of people have a really tough time with that too because
I even see interviews of big actors and stuff and they there’s the struggle is
so real they have so many years of not working or trying to get a job that even
when they become a movie star or a TV star
they’re constantly trying to take as much work as possible they don’t want to
turn anything down they’re scared to make a mistake because the moment you
turn something down you might not work for a year so I think everyone has a
struggle with trying to get where the pinnacle of where you want your career
to go I’m lucky because I I mean at this point in my career and I think for the
rest of my career I never I don’t know I would do this for free so
it’s a it’s a little different you know like a lot of people they hang on to
money or this and that and for me if I’m not motivated by the creativity of it I
don’t think I could do it I’ve turned down jobs already where people want to
pay me to direct things and I I don’t vibe with the material I I just can’t do
it and there’s something I’ve learned in my life in general if I’m not heartfelt
about something I can’t do it like you know in my life I try to get my I got my
real estate license and I did other things but without the passion I’m just
not effective compared to something I’m effective about you can’t stop me when
I’m creative and passionate about something but when I’m not it’s very
easy to stop me those is that you’re Libra scales you know I think that more
comes into play with my negotiating skills with people you know and and like
a lot of the movie was negotiating you know and the scales is like well what do
you want you know try to figure out what they want and if I can help them get
what they want either promise them that I’ll help them later or give to them
what they want now but what I don’t have right now is money so whatever I got to
do to get you to help me at the moment I will do but money I don’t have to give
to you so it has to be something else so you know and like you hire a DP but he’s
only DP TV shows or he’s only done this or that but he wants a feature you got
to find that person you know you got to find the people that they want what you
want and that’s the reason that they’re helping you you know you you know they
haven’t done a feature or whatever you know and same with actors you find a
really talented actor that hasn’t been a lead in a feature yet well he’s gonna
show up every day for free if he want him to because he’s doing his dream to
just like you’re doing your dream and that’s a problem for a lot of people
they go oh please help me and they go up to the people at the top and want them
to help you well these people are making a living they have no reason to take a
chance on you it’s the people that you’re left and the people to your right
that you need to depend on and build and grow together do you think that part of
making it is never feeling satisfied because then you’re you’re always
looking for that next thing and if you were complacent or content with
something you wouldn’t I think a lot of people I think happened that they have a
pinnacle of what they want in their head for me like I said I would do this for
free I love doing this so I would just keep doing it whether you know I
secretly I mean I gotta convince people to give me money to make movies
sometimes and I do and I I mean what I say when I think it’s gonna make money
but I would do it if I didn’t make a dollar so I love telling stories I love
seeing the reactions that people laughs I love you know I don’t want to always
do comedies but comedies are very rewarding because you know if it’s good
or bad if people because they’ll either laughing or they’re not so that’s one
thing about everything I’ve done so far has been mostly comedy that I’ve
everything that I’ve written and directed it’s been comedy and it’s very
easy in a theatre to know that they’re liking it or they’re not liking it so
it’s been interesting with while I got wasted did you have to do redo the first
10 minutes to appease the distributor or was it already sort of built in because
you knew that so while I got wasted actually we got offers from a lot of
distribution companies but you ended up self distributing so we actually are
self distributing the movie we don’t have a distributor I we went through an
aggregator to get on all the platforms right now we’re exclusively on Amazon
people can get it on Amazon read and buy it on Amazon I will go on iTunes I think
a video demand Vudu and a bunch of other platforms here in the next week or so I
believe and we just did it through an aggregator you pay an aggregator and
they put it on the platforms and because mostly all the distribution companies
that we talked to none of them were going to put any money in advertising
and I was like well what are you actually doing you know and they would
come up with things like oh you know all the big companies because we’re a
distribution company that you’ll get higher on the algorithms to be seen by
people and I’d be like well where’s the proof of that I mean like you’re telling
me this magical story of like oh I signed with you everyone’s gonna see my
movie on the platform compared to paying an aggregator to getting on there but
there was absolutely no proof to that it was just something that distributors
would say and I was like there’s no proof to it I can’t I can’t
drink the kool-aid in an event so that and you know we had we have money that
we’re putting in advertising so we’re doing that ourselves and also we
wouldn’t see now that we paid an aggregator we can see how you know from
the advertising who actually buys the movie on the platform well we can’t with
Amazon unfortunately their algorithms isn’t as good but on iTunes and some of
these others that we should be able to run an advertisement they can click on
the advertisement and then we can follow to see if they actually buy or rent it
but Amazon unfortunately can’t do that yet hopefully they fixed that but yeah
we decide not to go with the distributor and distributors would want they want
someone 20 percent someone 30 percent someone 40 percent and some of them I
mean that’s the thing if you’re an independent movie and you’re not going
to put any money in advertising and I put it any energy in the advertising
game no interest in it then some of these distribution companies are a good
option because they put 10 sometimes 20 thousand into getting you and all the
platforms and all the countries and all these kinds of things and you don’t have
to put out that 20 grand but if you want to bank in yourself which you know me
and Seth we’re talking about it’s like we’ve backed in ourselves every step of
the way here you know from making the movie ourselves to now distributing
ourselves we banked in ourselves so let’s just continue to do that and I
hustled my butt off to try to get the word out and get people to know about it
and we casted seven big social media people in the movie we have seven big
youtubers instagramers that would hopefully spread the word and they do
videos and stuff on it too so you have that as well but it’s exciting it’s all
it’s exciting getting the word out there and working on it and I see the numbers
come in every day you know there’s sometimes we have 150 people rendered by
the movie in one day and it’s like you know some some weeks it’s like that
every day and like wow on a Wednesday 140 people paid money to watch my movie
it’s insane to me it’s crazy and rewarding and exciting you know what are
some things you learned in the last five years that you wish you knew in the
first five years moved here some of the places that some
things have already said but number one is the banking yourself if you really
believe in yourself you have to bank in yourself and what that means is you
can’t depend on an external person to make your dreams happen if you want to
make them happen you go make them happen yourself now actors some actors are very
much independent of a studio or film maker if you’re not a filmmaker yourself
but even an actor in a way you could find the right director you could find
money people you could then produce and put a whole project together but it’s
the bank in yourself it’s to start learning and figure out what you need to
do and do it do it yourself we’ve Wally watt waist have we done completely
outside of the studio system and it would have never got made if I was I’d
still be scratching my head handing in descriptive people and even though
people love the script I still be handing it to people and even the people
that might want to make it they weren’t gonna make me the director who are you
so I had to do it to learn and to prove myself you know that’s another thing
that I’ve learned is people like I said people don’t see potential you have to
show them there I I’m the same person I was five or six years ago when I was
telling people you know I’m gonna be a film director they don’t really believe
me they don’t really know there’s so many people that say things in this town
now they treat me with totally different respect and they look at me like a
filmmakers so it’s very interesting in that way it’s like you know what you’re
going to do or what you’re capable of so go do it and show people don’t don’t
trust that they see it – they’re not gonna see it you have to show them what
would you say the people though that aren’t as confident with themselves
maybe they’re not confident with the way they look I mean you’re handsome man
you’re tall you present yourself well so it’s easy for me to see why people aside
from talent would want to believe in you but not everybody has that so what would
you say to people that don’t feel like they have it um it’s funny though cuz
I’m motivated mood that kind of goes into your motivation I’m actually
motivated by people not believing me in a way I mean I have a lot of support and
a lot my father and my mother and my family believe in me a lot but I’m
actually more motivated by people that tell me I can’t do something and I don’t
know I don’t know how healthy that is but that’s what it is and I think I
think ultimately if you’re not you have to start looking at yourself yeah then
the start of the work doesn’t start with with making films the work starts in ER
and then you need to go look at yourself analyze yourself and really build
yourself up maybe with positive reinforcement every morning metod maybe
meditation whatever it is build yourself up to believe the belief that you can do
it because without the belief I mean you’re not gonna do it you know if you
believe what people tell you you know I think everybody who’s ever done anything
amazing they were told they can’t do it and if they believe that they would
never would have done it so you know the fact that it’s never been done before it
just makes me excited that you know I’ll be the first you know how you know so
it’s more challenge when someone polite or not says no to you because then
rather than somebody who seems more like oh yeah that sounds great to you that’s
maybe not enough of a challenge I don’t look forward to it it’s not like I’m
like oh please tell me no but it’s kind of like I don’t know it’s you know it’s
a fire inside you or you tell me no and I’m like why do you want to get in my
way I’m gonna win you know no matter what so I’m gonna make this happen and
you know and I have good intentions with it I’m not I’m not trying to defeat
anybody but I have my goals and my dreams and and and my belief and it is
is you know you can’t your belief in you and what you want to do just can’t waver
it cannot and that’s the first place to work on if you don’t have that belief
you need to work on it and get it before you even take on the beast of a feature
or any dream you know that you have because I’m sure curing cancer the
people working on it right now they believe they’re gonna cure it no matter
what and you couldn’t tell them you couldn’t
Vin’s them that they weren’t gonna cure it even though they haven’t done it yet
but that’s the kind of belief that you need to have and determination to
accomplish your dreams no matter what they are since your time in Hollywood
what 2006 when have you been your most broke huh when I first got here I
actually slept in my car one night when I first got here I stay with my brother
for a while and his girlfriend at the time was tired of me being there and so
they were like you got to get out and so I slept in my car one night or two and
then I ended up staying with another friend for a while in the beginning yeah
I I’ve always been decent with saving money I’ve been lucky in that way so it
didn’t take long for me to get a job waiting tables and start saving up and
stuff but I’ve never been like $50,000 in credit card debt I said for making
the movie so I mean that was probably our brokest point was after we made the
movies by that’s the truth of it because we had $40,000 of credit card debt and
at that point I had already saved up I saved up 15 grand to put into the movie
so I already put my all my savings into the movie and we had 40 grand of credit
card debt so that was probably my brokest point is
after we made the movie but you don’t it was I never I never second-guessed at
once and I was proud and happy to do it so so you slept in your card you
remember what street with town that was that’s interesting huh where was I think
I was on El Segundo that’s why I live down in South Bay now and Redondo Beach
and I ended up sleeping in my car that first night at all my stuff at it it was
pretty crowded but I was 23 at the time so you could almost get away with it
nowadays I think I’d be like wake up you know once you hit your early thirties
you’re not quite the same anymore but yeah that was that was my hardest time
in LA and not knowing anybody other than my brother you know when I first moved
here I had no friends I didn’t know anybody and and eventually you start
kind of getting a family you know I was lucky I I did acting
school and so every you’re surrounded by people that are going through the exact
same thing that you’re going through starting out in LA and and so you kind
of become a family you know and so you get new friends that way and you know
all kinds of ways and it becomes it becomes your family here in Los Angeles
and I’m sure a lot of people have the same feeling when they come to LA they
kind of start a new family in a way because a lot of people come here not
knowing anybody one of the common themes you’ve talked about is on things not
going as planned my sense is you like to plan like to be organized I very much do
I don’t understand I was helping a friend recently plan a movie shoot and
he has all these things handwritten on a paper I’m like all right well let’s type
it out on the computer and get every single location and the address on on a
on a page and every single actor and you know every location we’re gonna shoot
what time of day and said why are we doing this and I’m like what do you mean
why are we doing this like you have all the information in your brain but you’re
gonna have a crew of you know 15 people maybe more maybe less but these people
they have to know what you’re thinking and you can’t always be the one telling
them it’s very easy to hand all this information so everybody already has it
all and when they forget it they just look at the piece of paper you know you
have to save that time so no everything’s about organization with the
whole thing and you have to organize to the last detail because when you get
there on the day it’s not gonna go how you planned and there’s always problems
that arise with Wally got wasted there was so many different problems that
arise I mean for one certain locations we couldn’t afford permits you know
certain places we had permits certain places we didn’t we got shut down one
day you know other days I’d convinced security guards and police officers to
let us keep shooting you know and all while he got wasted for starters I
convinced the crew from Teen Wolf the TV show to come over on my movie so I was
like all the same people who had worked together previously I’m the new guy
as the boss you know me so that was really interesting dynamic but they want
nothing to do with cops or security guards like if their union crew so if
they you know if they get any see a cop or a security guy they’re just stopped
working they don’t want anything to do with them they want no trouble no
nothing so it’s on me to fix those problems so I might be acting in the
scene and a security guard comes up and I’m like finishing the take real quick
and then turn and take care of my my problem over here and then hopefully
convince them and then come back and do my take or direct or whatever I’m doing
at the time so then the only place we got shut down
actually it was my apartment which is the funniest thing ever there was one
day we got shut down in my apartment and basically the this scene it’s the iconic
scene in the movie actually the first time they bring the body out in public
and it’s a slow-motion scene and they’re walking with the body and actually if
you look at Patrick who plays Mitch in the movie he looks left in the slow
motion scene and he’s looking at a woman who’s screaming at us going where’s your
permit I’m gonna shut you down and that’s why he’s looking left but it’s in
slow motion you barely you know you have no idea what he’s looking at he just
glances left that’s what he’s looking at some woman screaming at us telling us
you know where’s your permit and so I managed to get that take done
and then I went up to the woman was like hey I’m so sorry did somebody bother you
are we bothering you or how can I help you she was like I want to see your
permit and I was like okay well I just sent somebody to go get the permit so
why don’t we just I’m gonna shoot one more and then and then you know and then
I’m sure somebody be back to show you the permit she’s like I need to see now
I’m calling the cops and she has the phone right there and I’m like okay I
try my best you know so I was like guys were shutting it down everybody wanted
to kill her you know the crew they just set up all these giant lights and
everything the cast and I was like don’t talk to her don’t bother because I fully
know that we have to come back there three days later at that date and shoot
with cops and fake guns and all he does I can’t have the cops be called now
Brewer how the heck am I gonna shoot here in three days
so I’m like nowhere to speak to her just leave her alone
and then one of my actors said to it it was so funny while James Batson who
plays while he does a phenomenal job he goes way to destroy art how many passes
there assists fi day today because we were playing like a a silly comedy movie
but and then actually when we came back there three days later she did end up
calling the cops and luckily she didn’t do in the daytime so there’s a scene in
the movie where some dirty cops shoot somebody and that was in the daytime and
luckily were between the two buildings and no one called the cops because if a
cop came up and sauce with fake guns and police uniforms they probably were to
shut us down but the cops didn’t get there till nighttime and we saw the cop
come and he posts up about I don’t know 50 yards from my apartment on the street
just parks there and just watches and luckily at that point we were shooting
all the SUV car scenes so we would we brought this SUV between the two
buildings and we set up all the lights on the hood pointing inward and the
cameras on attached to the hood of the car and how are we gonna leave the cops
right there we can’t drive around with this stuff on there and nobody should do
that I’m not encouraging anyone to do this at all you should get a tow truck
and not drive a car with lights pointing at your face and a camera but we we had
to do it we had to do at that moment and so basically I got out of the car I
turned off all the lights I turned off the camera and luckily there’s no
streetlight right outside of my apartment so when we pulled out you
could only see the headlights of the car and I turned laughed them away from the
cop and we would drive down the street and then I’d get out and turn out all on
all the lights and turn on the camera and then we would just drive slowly on
these residential roads and shoot the scenes so or parking in a parking lot
and shoot the scenes if you couldn’t see out the windows so that’s what we did
and then we’d come back after 3040 minutes of shooting and drive faster and
not past the cop but close enough that he could see us but there was no
streetlights so he couldn’t I I’m assuming he couldn’t see the camera on
the hood and the lights and we managed to get away with the whole thing
so my luck coming into play once again so and then other days you know like we
shot at a casino and we had no business being at the casino we didn’t have
permits but I’m showing up with a you know three ton grip truck and and a crew
of 15-20 people they the nice part is were so big that people assume we must
have permission to be there because there’s no way you would come and try to
shoot there without permission and we’re shooting at the parking lot of the
casino and the two security guards come up and they’re like it was like a scene
out of super bed they’re like dude where’s your permit guys where’s you you
guys have a permit you know and my friend David Lee was helping with the
movie goes yeah we have a permit and then they laugh and they go because if
you do it we don’t give a shit haha and they laughed and then they left they
didn’t end up even looking at trying to look at a permit so which again luck
came into play there and another place a security the head of security came and
he came at the absolute wrong time they were because we were running next to
something it was slightly dangerous what we were doing and it should have never
been done in the first place but I was looking at the footage focused on the
camera and the first ad was trying to get more footage and she was she was
like yeah Ron run Ronald quit Louise in the movie one of my actors plays a dirty
cop run next to that moving object you know and he did and it’s not really safe
to do that and then the head of security comes up right as he’s doing that it’s
like the worst possible time he could come and and he was like whoa whoa what
are you guys doing here like this is not safe
you need a permit to be here and it took like 20-30 minutes to talk to him and
convince them to let us stay there and at the beginning he was totally against
it but I was like I saved up this is my life savings like I saved up all my
money and this is I’m shooting a big youtube video because the moment you say
a feature they assume you have money so I just told them how much a youtube
video and you can’t shut me down and it and you just please please please and
eventually after 20 minutes of hearing me sob and talk you know and be sweet
and nice because I was never mean you know he said fine you can shoot but
don’t don’t shoot there shoot you know you could shoot on the stairs which is
like doesn’t make any sense to me you could shoot on the stairs in the
parking lot well luckily and scheduling I knew the hardest place would shoot
would be where most of the pedestrians were so we shot that first and that’s
what he said you couldn’t shoot anymore well I already had all the footage I
needed up there so and only one more take I needed up there I figured we’d do
it last now that we got shut down and we shot the stairs in the parking lot next
and so I scheduled just perfect knowing that we had so much time and when to
show up with a crew that I showed up with you usually have some time if you
start shooting right away before people shut you down because they’re wondering
what you’re doing there and they don’t come up and shut you down right away and
I actually had a defense for that because the crew sees a security guard
at a cop they immediately don’t do anything so I would have sometimes I
would just go up to a cop or security guard and be like hey how you doing are
you having a good night yeah when do you get off oh that’s awesome
cool well have a great night you know and I would just walk away I would just
make small talk and walk away and the crew would see me talk to the security
guard or the cop and be like oh okay he’s squared everything we’re we’re good
when really in fact I just talked to him about their day and and was friendly but
see after I’m friendly too they assume I must be there because people that don’t
they’re not supposed to be whether they stay shy away they act like they’re
being sneaky no I just come up completely confront you’d be super nice
and walk away so they were like how do you know about this they’d a spy there’s
so other security Isaac do you know does the movie shooting here like well let’s
call the boss you know like and they’d call maybe their boss and they don’t
know and then they call their boss well meanwhile I already had an hour and a
half to shoot so I got some footage and so that’s a lot of part of the
scheduling is like you have to try to think of those kind of problems and
solve them so yeah that was and sometimes cops would just be like oh we
saw you’re shooting a movie if I have a lot of important equipment we’re just
keeping an eye on you and they would just watch us but I wasn’t in Hollywood
I was in Southbay so where I was in Pasadena or
somewhere where you know the cops if you do it in Hollywood you probably are
gonna get shut down and some places you definitely do get shut down I don’t
encourage people not to have a permit you know but we had to take the chance
because we just didn’t have the money so you know we go for it there’s a cave scene in the movie we go
to this gigantic we go to this gigantic cave in the movie and the ending scene
is like in there’s a big cave and so we found that location it’s a movie Ranch
like two hours north of Los Angeles and they were building the cave when we went
there two months earlier and I was like oh this is great they’re like you know
what they do is they dig a hole in the ground basically and so the walls of the
cave a real dirt but then they build the top of the cave over with construction
and then you know do dry mold or whatever make it look like dirt and then
they put lights in there so then you have total control in the cave to make
it look the way you want so I went two months earlier before shooting and paid
for the location and was like oh this is great we’re gonna be the first people
shooting in this giant beautiful cave and I’m super excited about it well the
day before shooting before we’re gonna go up there they tell us basically that
the cave is not finished the half the cave is finished and the other half is
not done at all so you know you can’t shoot here and I’m like we’re coming to
shoot there we have a contract I can’t not go there now so I was like I said
Seth my set times my partner my writing partner producing partner up there to
take pictures of it so I ended up having to shoot the scene facing one direction
because you can’t you have to face only one direction in that scene so every
every shot in that whole scene is facing one direction but you don’t know so I’m
talking to you behind you is the same wall that’s behind me we just lit it
different and so that was the solution to that problem is like we went up there
and I was like what am I gonna do I’m gonna just have to shoot everything one
direction so I had to keep in my head when people walk like what direction
they were and what direction we shot and and like the wall differently so the
cracks because it’s not a flat wall to make it look different and it was really
hard for my DP and the people around me to trust that I could do that in my head
you know but no one’s ever mentioned it no one has ever noticed that in that in
the movie so when you watch the movie it’s facing all one direction so yeah
which problems do you like figuring out more which is which is a better
challenge for you the problems that come up as a director
because most of them are out of your control they’re all external things or
as a screenwriter they’re really internal they’re about you cracking the
story somehow I mean they’re very different the nice part about the
screenwriting process for me and Seth is that we didn’t have a time limit you
know we didn’t have a you know some people have to write scripts for pay and
they have a time limit they have to rush through things we had enough time to
really figure out problems and also just do rewrites after rewrite after a
rewrite to try to get it right and sometimes you know like originally in
the original script in the movie while he got wasted we have dirty cops chasing
us because spoiler alert Wally Wally actually filmed them kill somebody so
then there’s his phone so they’re chasing us the whole movie trying to get
his phone back because he tried to blackmail them but he’s dead the whole
time they don’t know he’s dead so they’re chasing us trying to get that
phone and and in the writing originally those were mafia guys and it just didn’t
really work in the writing process and I think I just kind of obsessed that’s one
of the reasons why it’s hard for me to start a project it’s like once I’m in it
I’m obsessive and so I would obsess and obsess obsess trying to fix the problem
and I think in a dream actually I came up with them being dirty cops and then I
wake up in the morning and I like have the solution and I was like 30 cops
perfect back when we wrote it now it’s like of course 30 cops they’re
everywhere there’s all this footage of them killing people and all those kinds
of things back then we this is 2014 that I think there was like one incident of a
cop shooting a guy so wasn’t so prevalent as it is now so it was kind of
like I came up with the perfect idea now it’s kind of not I guess obvious through
a lot of people of the biggest villains would be dirty cops but back then it
wasn’t like that so I mean that’s how it tie it all
together and I came up with the dirty cops I also came up with the phone and
recording him because we needed we needed to move the story forward and
having people chase us and it was figuring out how do we do that
we have somebody chase us and why are they chasing us and all that kind of
stuff and so I came up with dirty cops were filmed doing a dirty deed and
they’re chasing us to get the evidence that was that was like the one of the
key elements of writing it it was like okay this can move the story forward so
but the problem is onset totally different because a very time restraint
you know it’s like we’re going and we’re shooting no matter what I can’t stop
this train so if a cave isn’t finished we have to fix it if the grip truck gets
a flat tire with our grip truck got a flat tire one day it was like well what
can we shoot without the lights because we don’t have lights right now you know
so there’s just all these kinds of problems you know that come up on the
day and you just have to fix them and you can’t there’s no time as a film
director like I’m asking I’m answering questions every single second of the day
as a director I’m also I was also acting in the film so I got to focus on my
lines and delivery and all that stuff and and helping actors but I’m still
answering questions do you want this do you want to wear this do you want her to
wear this blouse or this blouse what color do you want oh I want that one
do you like the lighting over here is this too dark to light I’m getting asked
a question almost every 60 seconds so you have to be fast when you ask me my
questions I don’t have time for you to give me a song and a dance about why
something’s wrong just tell me what’s wrong so we can fix it and I try not to
ever turn down ideas that people want to give ideas I just usually tell them okay
I have a plan for this so I’m gonna do what I planned and we’re gonna get to
that afterwards and if I don’t like it we’re not going to get to it but I don’t
have to tell you that you know I’ll just say we ran out of time but I don’t want
to ever turn any ideas down because that’s the moment people stop giving me
ideas and it needs to be a creative space for people to share ideas you know
and and speak their mind and do it in an appropriate way though because I do have
a limited time and I am doing certain things so if you’re the there’s
a certain time to give me an idea most of it hopefully in pre-production
I have table reads I have you know I try to get people together so they can be
part of the creative process so when we get on set you’re not like oh I have an
idea I’ve been wanting to tell you know you should have done that when we were
rehearsing you know I mean that’s why I do all that time and I go to every
single location with the DP and tell them every shot that I want to do and
the look that I want and as much as you can do ahead of time it really helps you
when you’re making the movie because the unforeseeable problems come up and if
you haven’t discussed the things you can discuss ahead of time you might not get
a chance to discuss them anymore you know as to where you could have settled
that out and pre-production on how it’s gonna get lit or you know I have a shot
list I know all my shots I know how we’re gonna put it together in my head
when we get there and sometimes there’s only one way when you go to editing to
put it together and when I edit the film I edit with an editor but I’m there
every single day every single frame every cut is usually me going no don’t
go back a millisecond you know because he hands it to him here and I needed his
hand out like I know exactly where I want to cut usually and I hear some
directors actually edit in camera I mean it’s so they hype that up I’m just like
it’s so not important nowadays it’s just funny it doesn’t matter he if he cut it
yeah you don’t have to cut it you might as well film for twenty more seconds
you’re not paying for film but anyways it’s another topic with while he got
wasted it sounds like it was it was a fun project with you and Seth and there
were no time constraints in the writing have you had a screenwriting project
where there was time constraint and what happened I’ve been lucky I haven’t had a
script that well no that’s not true at are actually three guys on a couch you
know we raised the money and so I had a month I had a month to write that script
actually so no very much I’ve had two time restraint it’s just really really
obsessing over it and really trying to get it good and three guys on a couch is
about three guys running out their couch and
mm-hmm and I had two story lines the one guy woke up and he has a girl that he
thinks he slept with in his room but he doesn’t really remember anything because
he drank too much and he’s trying to figure out like what this woman is doing
there but as soon as he slept with her and she’s cleaning and she’s doing all
this stuff he’s like man she’s like the best woman I’ve ever met like she’s
cleaning the bathroom after I’ve only slept with her once so he’s trying to
figure that out and she keeps appearing like she leaves the apartment is like
okay cool I’ll never see her again he comes home and she’s cooking what are
you doing in my apartment oh I’m just cooking us food you know and
I cleaned this and that he’s going home man Wow who is this woman but okay he’s
clueless at the same time we’re doing couch interviews trying to fill the
couch to make rent because we don’t have enough money for rent so I was in the
writing process I was like how do I connect these two stories and just
obsessing over it obsessing over because they need to be connected for it to be
good and so I eventually figured out okay this woman that he woke up and is
there he rented the couch out last night to this woman and he doesn’t remember so
they already have filled the couch the whole episode but they don’t realize it
so that’s other two storylines had tied together and so then I was like oh wow
that makes a lot of fun dialogue where she’s talking about renting the place
and he’s talking about sex and they’re totally on two different pages and so
he’s very confused by her answers to certain things because he’s totally
talking about something totally different so the writing restraints of
that was just I mean it has to be there’s in my brain there’s only one
good enough and so it’s trying to meet that bar and when you have a time
restraint it’s even more obsessive and you got to X out other things in your
life at the moment I can’t pick up my phone or I can’t do anything other than
this so it’s pure concentration what happened with that project we shot it we
ended up shooting three guys in a couch that was three guys in the couch it’s on
Amazon Prime you can watch on Amazon Prime just like parole officers and I
Amazon Prime as well for free and while he’s on Amazon for a purchase at the
moment and Durant but did someone else want you to come in and and make that
project or how did that work with it was kind of like the wheels were
already turning on three guys in a couch it was like we had a date already to
shoot it and so that’s the thing about raising money for any project people
didn’t tell you they have money but they don’t have money forever money just
doesn’t sit in someone’s bank account and that waiting for you to get around
to it so we raised the money to shoot a TV pilot and those people that had that
money I didn’t want it to go away so we already had shooting dates I didn’t want
to go hey listen we’re gonna shoot in January February March whatever when it
was December or whatever so I I knew that I wanted to stick to those dates
and it was my first time ever shooting anything so it was like all guns blazing
let’s do this you know I didn’t want to take any chances and since then too I’ve
learned that lesson over and over again you know someone comes up to me and goes
hey I have this money I really want to do a movie and I’m like I don’t have a
project yet that I want to do I’m not sure kind of stinks in a way cause it’s
like man I wish I had that paperwork in order and the project that I want to do
so I can take your money but I can’t take your money if I don’t know what I
want to do with it yet you know so that’s happened in at least two or three
times in my career where somebody has a certain dollar amount they’re like okay
I’d love to do something with you and I don’t have the project ready yet
you know and that’s a tough part with having not wanting to ever shoot
anything that I’m not passionate about you know that’s the problem with that
because if I’m not passionate about it I’m not going to shoot it I don’t want
to do it so your decision to be behind the camera as well I mean did you always
want to just be in front of the camera or that was just never part of the big
goal the big goal was just to make as many movies as you could I started out
as an actor actually so I grew up studying acting I would study
performances like Brando on the waterfront and and you know all the ones
I could watch you know my father and me shared that back when I was a kid
showing me performances and talking about acting and I always wanted to be
an actor and I’d actually I I tried out for a play when I was in sixth grade and
I didn’t get it apart my sister got the part in it and then I had extreme stage
fright when it came to auditioning and then I auditioned for a play I think
when I was a sophomore in high school and I didn’t get it either and then I
eventually auditioned for a play again when I was a junior in high school and
she took a chance on me because my auditioning skills weren’t that great
and I got the play and once I finally did it I kind of sword they ended up
naming an award after me my first year acting in the high school and they
handed out every year now called the a Ward award back at my little high school
glide high school and and then the next following year I got Best Actor you know
and I was competing against all these guys that were acting since they were
freshmen and I just kind of came in and did my thing but we would sell out every
night you know which was really cool 300 seater and most people I can say most
people one of the comments of the director she would do a speech to all
the actors and she came back one was still one of the best comments I’ve ever
gotten compliments I’ve gotten in my career she gave her the speech to all
the actors and then everybody left and she said Adam just do what you do you
know because a lot of people were out there just to see you and it was fun it
was fun times we were doing comedies and I felt like I get out of them eating out
of my hand you know just making them laugh and stuff and comedy always came
natural to me it’s one of the reasons why I’ve made comedy films now and I
think I’ve started I always wanted to direct to of course but it started with
a love for acting and then I think I started I went to directing sooner than
later because I realized that the auditions I were getting and weren’t
good enough to get to where I wanted to be so a lot of the directing I do now is
motivated by my acting in it and right now I’m actually hired to write a script
and direct a movie which I might not end up acting in but I do love directing but
I think a lot of my movies will be because I want to play this character so
I will then direct it and you know they kind of feed each other
motivations as a director and as an actor so sorry have you already written
the script I’m writing the script now it’s about a book called catch the white
tiger it’s a book that came out and the guy who wrote the book tonio Sally
wanted me really to do a movie and I said well I can’t make a movie without
script so then he hired me to write a script and ultimately wants to hire me
to direct the movie – which I think will be made in the next couple years I you
know I I don’t have a time restraint on it I just it’s when it’s right you know
we want to make a movie that’s it’s gonna be a biopic drama movie so it’s
gonna be a lot bigger than then Wally and we’re gonna go from the 60s 70s 80s
and so I mean it’s it’s gonna have a lot a lot of work and I think it’s gonna be
gonna shoot in Beirut and as well as in the United States so it’s gonna be a
huge undertaking and part of that is by not rushing and and first it’s making
the script what it needs to be because it could go in a lot of different
directions you know you have a lot of different morals and themes in a movie you know it could be inspiring or it
could be a drama and a downer I mean you can make it in so many different
directions on what you want to do so we have to make those choices and figure
out what’s the he has a 400 page book I have to make into a 120 page script or
whatever and what parts of his life do I leave out what parts of his life are
important for the story that we want to tell so it’s it’s it’s a very
interesting process that I’m just starting – we’re starting the outline
now and try to figure that stuff out it’s such a trick with biopics because
when they’re done right it’s amazing and then sometimes when they’re when they’re
rushed I know there’s been certain ones and I won’t say which ones but I wanted
so much for them to be good but that was so rushed and later we’re trying and I
saw and then there’s others that I don’t know where the magic is and that but
it’s just done in such a way where you could just you know you you feel like
you are living that life and so there’s a real I think my favorite bio pics are
the ones that you really get to know the
character and the motivations of what motivated him to do certain things I
feel like a lot of the biopics nowadays they kind of get away with just telling
you the facts and I kind of I feel like it’s a cop-out in a way I’m like what
motivated this person what to do the amazing things they did or terrible
things that they did what motivated them that’s what interests me as a film
viewer you know so hopefully we can achieve those kinds of things which are
an easy a lot of people they don’t know what motivates them you know but as
sometimes as an outsider you can see it so we’ll see you know I hope it’s a very
three-dimensional movie in that that it’s a character piece as well as
telling the facts of what happened in his life so when you were a script
reader did you have any biopics come on to you I don’t believe so I don’t
believe I ever read a biopic and that was very much in the 2000s biopics
winter like there and like now like everybody wants to do biopics which is
funny I didn’t see myself doing a biopic at all actually I I there’s a movie I
wrote already it’s already written called attachment theory and I saw me
shooting that next it’s about a guy a low-end mob guy who basically works for
his uncle and he collects money for people that owe money to his uncle who
works for the cartel but he’s very much like his uncle shields him from doing
anything really bad so he just kind of beats people up a little bit that was
the money it’s kind of like a Rocky character and but he needs money because
his dad’s needs a surgery and can’t really walk so he’s desperate need for
money so I had a meeting with his uncle and some of the heads of the cartel
basically he speaks out of turn because they need a guy to do a job and he’s
like I’ll do the job not knowing what the job is
so they hand him an address and he goes to East LA to to do this job he doesn’t
even know what he’s doing he goes in this abandoned house and they’ve
kidnapped a woman and he has to watch the woman for three days basically and
he watches the woman in this abandoned house and he ends up falling in love
with the girl and the problem is the kidnapping goes bad they’re gonna come
back and kill her so he has to make a choice either to save this woman’s life
and take on you know the cartel and everybody
that he knows or to kill the woman and so of course he he saves her and
everything starts going crazy from there but it’s already written I already have
it written and I want to shoot it and I will shoot it eventually I wrote it for
me – also to play that guy so but that’s it’s called attachment theory right now
but I have no idea what it eventually be called because I’m not completely sold
on that name but that’s the movie and I’ll get around to making that
eventually – would you recommend that most actors learn screenwriting
I think it’s an actor I think it’s important for you to learn as much as
you possibly can the more you can learn behind the camera stuff – it will help
you you know and it’s the same thing with directors actually um I hear so
many directors saying they were terrified of actors and I think to
myself what’s wrong with you taking acting classes start learning about that
craft because clearly you need to if they scare you and I think it’s the same
for actors though if you direct things if you know about things as an actor now
that I’m a filmmaker I mean if we were shooting this and I didn’t like the way
I deliver that line I would just say it again and then you could cut out the
first one I don’t even need to tell you to cut you know and so there’s all these
tricks you can learn as a director like there’s a lot of very talented actors
that I work with that they don’t understand that I can stop you wherever
I want to stop you if you stutter if you make it and point you know and change
the angle on somebody else for a split second and come back to you like you
don’t have to have an amazing take all the way through it means nothing to me
whether you killed it all the way through as long as you killed it if you
killed the first half of the take one time and completely bombed it the second
half and then we do a second take and you bomb the first half and then you
kill it the second half I’m good that’s all I need so that’s the thing to you as
an actor you should never cut yourself because maybe you did screw up but I
don’t care and neither does anybody else because we’re making films now we’re not
making theatre so we don’t need you to do it good all the way through and so it
there is an element that you should be learning as
some director about acting as an actor about the film directing and about
lighting and about everything else you should know you should know what lens
they’re putting on cuz you got to know your box you know is it a 50 millimeter
lens is it a 200 millimeter line like what is the what is the frame so what I
can do in the frame you know because if it’s an extreme closeup to there if
you’re dealing with the correct you know move top-of-the-line cameras your depth
of field is only so far so if I move forward like this I’m not a focus if I
move back I’m in focus these are all things you need to know but a lot of
that’s why experience comes into play because most actors learn from
experience things like you don’t learn how to be on a camera in an acting class
usually you know because what acting class has the lenses and has depth of
field and and all these can edit the scene together you know you don’t learn
that stuff so you have to learn it as you go as you as you perform your craft
and movies and TV and that kind of stuff itself as an actor have you ever sensed
that a director was fearful of you or intimidated you know I don’t know I
haven’t but maybe I was naive because when you’re an actor you’re very focused
on what you’re doing you know what I mean sometimes I’ve done in there was
one film I did it where I had a six-minute take you know and I didn’t
there’s no cutting you know he didn’t have the time to cut so he shot me all
in one angle for six minutes that’s six minutes of dialogue where I have to know
every word on that page and I want to kill it and kick ass and hit all the
moments that I’ve picked out in decisions I’ve picked out for that
character and how he feels about this line of that line it’s a lot of focus
you know and especially and when Wally got wasted I’m not really doing so much
of a character piece it’s not far from it’s not too hard for me to play that
character so I’m not juggling a lot of hats but when you’re you these Academy
award-winning actors they have an accent they have a limp they have their face
only moves in a certain way when they talk you know so it’s every single one
of those things takes focus and concentration and so
to worry about whether an actor’s fear for view is probably the last thing on
their brain they’re too focused on their performance and what’s going on with
them they’re you know they’re there if any other energy is on somebody else
it’s on their other actor because that’s who’s feeding them in the scene you know
if you don’t react to something in there on camera then now you’re not giving a
good performance you’re not listening correctly and listening if someone else
is on camera with you listening is so important and a lot of acting classes
they teach all you need to listen but that’s not necessarily true either
because you might be acting with a square or a checkmark on a wall and the
other actor might not even be there you know a lot of times in wall-e I didn’t
have time to I didn’t have time to let somebody act with me we had so much time
restraint sometimes I would give the actor acting with me a lot more time and
then I would give the actor with me a lot more time and then when it was my
turn to act I would just okay I’ll do it by myself
I just need the script supervisor give me my eyeline I picked my my line okay
this is my eyeline I’m just gonna act the whole scene like this and talk to
them like they’re there and then they’re not there and then the scripture
provider is gonna give me the other line as fast as he can deliver it and then
I’m gonna do mine the next line so we can speed up the whole process and if I
don’t like the way I live deliver my line I’m just gonna deliver it again and
we’re just gonna get through it as fast as possible which is upsetting in a way
because you don’t really give your best acting performance but I’m the director
first I’m an actor second in a way and
eventually hopefully as I get better and better I can take on more character
pieces that are harder on acting but I laugh at some people like you’re acting
so good because I think to myself god I’m cutting myself so short on these
sometimes give myself one take you know for you to compliment my acting is
extremely flattering in a way because I can’t wait to show people what I really
what kind of chops I have when I really start bite off something you know that
you can’t see me as and then if I prove that that’s a that’s the motivation of
an actor is to try to do something that you can’t see them doing and but then
convince you that they’re really that person that’s the fun
part of being an actor so in my opinion so how do you think making while I got
wasted helped you to move forward I think so while I got ways is my first
feature so to be moving forward on after it how does it help me move forward I
think it’s it’s it’s kind of amazing and I try to explain this to people but
until you’ve done a feature people don’t believe you can do a feature because so
many people have failed doing a feature so just a lot more doors open up in a
way you know people know that you’ve done it and if it’s at least half-decent
they think you can do it again you know and actually I think I’ve read something
that 99% of filmmakers make their first feature they never make a feature again
so that’s how many people try to do this and go I don’t want to do that again
this is horrible you know because you have to really love thumb that want to
do it because it is so hard you know like I said earlier it’s like two three
hours a night I slept on Wally and how many emergencies that would
happen or whatever and everything’s comes back on me so if you don’t like to
be a leader you’re not gonna like being a film director you know you have to
manage egos you have to manage you have to keep your cool under all
circumstances and at the same time make the right decisions you don’t want to
put anybody in danger you don’t want to you know your movies important but we’re
making a movie we’re not curing cancer so let’s not endanger anybody or do
anything that’s unsafe and after you’ve done your first feature it’s just a
totally different respect you get from people and opportunities open up way
more because now you’re a real filmmaker really I mean everybody kind of looks at
you like an amateur when you’re making short films but after you made a feature
you you’re in the pros I mean you are you’re competing once you
make a feature you’re competing with the Avengers you’re competing with all these
other movies there’s no scale of like oh that movie
no you’re competing with them all because the audience on Amazon can
choose Avengers that they can choose while I got wasted you know so you’re
competing with everybody and that’s why I take it easy on myself
because you know I didn’t have five hundred million dollars to make a movie
if we had 70 grand so the fact that I’m even competing with these movies and
some people are watching my movie I’m thrilled because there’s so much content
out there right now to watch so but you learn you know you learn and
opportunities they just open up they open up and you don’t know where they’re
gonna come from after you’ve done your first feature so you just got to do it
you got to do it you gotta take the chance you got to learn you got to fall
in your face and you got to go do it even if it never sees the light of day
at least you did it and do it again when did you read your first
screenwriting book in which which book oh my first one I think my first one was
actually save the cat which is a really good book and it was about outlining if
anybody wants to be a filmmaker I would suggest that book save the cat if you
want to be a filmmaker it lays out structure really well and now everything
doesn’t have to be formulaic but everything’s almost been done at this
point so I mean even when I’m making the movie now where I’m making a okay this
movie about the book catches the white tiger it’s about it’s a biopic so I go
and I watch all biopics and what what kind of biopic do want to make wolf of
Wall Street is very different than the founder you know I mean so the
blueprints there in a way you know so that helps you make a blueprint that
book and but I feel like books were helpful that’s a very helpful book but I
felt like watching movies was the most helpful for me you know like my brother
who’s my writing partner will send me scripts and be like here you know he
just sent me like three scripts yesterday of all these biopics I’d
rather watch the movies because I’m very much I know that a script can change so
much and compared to making the movie and so when you’re seeing it in the
movie it might be an improv it might would be whatever but that could still
be a script even maybe it wasn’t a script it could have been a script if
you would have wrote it that way so I kind of like watching the final product
more than reading the script in the sense of
learning when it comes to like Goodfellas reading the script or
watching the movie I’d rather watch the movie and analyze that then actually
read the script but my brother is the opposite so it just depends on what how
you learned and you can get your hands nowadays with the internet you get your
hands on so many scripts and so many things and learn so much you can read
the script for Goodfellas you know when I was a when I was young the kid you
know you could never get your hands on a script like that unless you went to it
like American film institution or one of these big film schools that have those
kind of scripts then you could read it and learn from it but nowadays I mean
people can learn so easily with the internet it’s just it’s a great thing if
you want to learn what three scripts did he send you
ah he sent me wolf of wallstreet I think he sent me founders and he sent me
Goodfellas that’s why I brought him all up so I think I opened wolf of
wallstreet and read the first couple of pages and I was like I don’t know watch
the movie but I don’t know if I’ll read it or not I know he’s read it but he’s
my writing partner so you know I would like to read him just for fun but I feel
like now’s the time that really for me I get more from a movie than a script
because I’m a filmmaker he’s a script writer so you know he’s
more of a script like he wants to just be a script writer when I brother
Charlie Ward me I want to be a filmmaker and an actor I don’t really I write
scripts out of necessity I don’t really want to write scripts it’s like I write
them because I don’t have a script you know and I’ve been blessed with the fact
that at least I know structure well and I get I’ve watched god I used to watch
two three movies I used to watch two three movies a day when I was a kid you
know we moved I moved from Philadelphia when I was a kid to Roseburg glide
Oregon when I was 12 years old and there was nothing to do I went from the mall
and the skating rink to like okay there’s a lot of trees around there’s
nothing to do the first neighbors like a mile away well I would just watch movies
like crazy you know so I’d watch two three movies a day half the time all my
free time was spent watching movies or outside running around
and they I’ve heard it before you gotta watch 10 you got to spend ten thousand
hours on your craft to really be a master at it
well I’ve easily watched you know over ten thousand hours of movies to gotten
to where I’ve gotten and honestly that’s what makes you an artist in a way
because if you have the things that used to shock me and impress me and intrigue
me when I was a kid watching movies are different than what they do now because
I’ve seen so many of them so it’s different you know you can think back to
the time of when it did but ultimately now I have so much more of a library in
my head of movies that now you’re competing with all those as to where if
I only saw seven movies this movie’s amazing but it’s only competing with six
but if you watch 10,000 hours or whatever now I’ve seen Godfather and the
Goodfellas in there they’re both mafia movies now they’re competing against
each other and so some people nowadays that they say oh I I this is my favorite
movie but they’ve never seen all these movies in the 70s and 80s and I’m
thinking well yeah but you don’t really you don’t know your craft
I mean you know you haven’t spent the time to watch all those movies and and
really learn your craft you know would you say Charlie’s good at one part of
screenwriting and you’re good at the other or I mean like how do you work
together with a partner how is that um with Seth it was different so Seth Himes
and me wrote while he got wasted Charlie is writing this new movie with me two
very different writing partners for me so Seth really wanted to put the words
on the page and so I would basically do the outline and then he would go off and
write by himself and then come bring it back to me and then I’d read it make all
these corrections on the page and be like the scene doesn’t hit this moment
it does I need this moment and this is like like as an example this is the low
of the movie like these guys have to turn on each other I need a good
monologue here of him turn on him and no hope you know and that was
one of the scenes that Seth couldn’t end up doing on his own but most of them I’d
give him notes and then he would go and make funny moments and do certain things
and he would change it and write it and then like the lo of the movie and while
he got wasted there on a cliffside overlooking all of Los Angeles he could
never get that scene so I was like okay I’ll write it so then I wrote that scene
and the jokes in it are mine but the jokes and the other scenes are his and
so we it’s nice to write in a group attached from a theory I wrote on my own
by myself but while he got wasted was with Seth and then there’s new ones with
my brother and my brother my brother and me Ben range scrim since I was scripts
since I was a child so we have very much shorthand with each other of like
thinking a lot of the same things and stuff like that but he as well doesn’t
it’s funny I have not found anybody that we’d like to write page words on the
page together it’s kind of like he goes off and writes I go off and write and we
come together it’s I I’ve yet to find somebody that likes to write in the room
together but that would be interesting it would be a dream come true in a way
it’d be fun and I’ve done that with my brother but parole officers we did
together but I acted out all the characters in the living room and he sat
there and would type so I’m like living the characters and saying what they
would say and then he’s like writing them down so it’s a very different
process with parole officers on that but most of them had people want to write
alone you know they want their creativity to you know quiet and all
that kind of stuff so I was just different I just feel like the scale of movies
back in the 70s and 80s are very different a lot of it has to do too with
the studio’s not wanting to take chances so much nowadays they back in the day
they would give you know a kid that did some impressive short film a whole
budget you know for a movie and he would get creative and do something but the
then they weren’t so hands-on and I feel like there are now but movies back in
the 70s and 80s they would do biopics that were three hours three and a half
hours four hours it doesn’t exist anymore you know as to where when you
sat down and watch the biopic back in the day and it was three and a half
hours long you felt like you lived a whole life you know as the way a biopic
in an hour and 40 minutes I’m like huh you know I didn’t I didn’t feel like I
really got to know the character you know as to where in a biopic if you see
him and a lot of is where they start compared to where they end and that very
much interests you it’s like maybe they start I remember Steven Spielberg’s
talking about some movie where a guy starts in the beginning the movie and he
has I think it’s Lawrence of Arabia he starts in the beginning and he has this
beautiful sword and his beautiful outfit and he’s so primped and proper and and
it’s so clean and by the end of the movie he’s so bloody and his image of
the world has completely changed and he’s a mess and that’s from start to
finish ideally that’s such a change in
character you know and bio biopic should be character pieces I like in our movie
the one I’m chewing I don’t know the name of it yet but the book is called
catch the white tiger he’s he starts the movie he’s selling in Lebanon he’s
selling jeans American jeans in Lebanon by the end he’s selling Lebanese food to
Americans in America so I mean like that full circle is very interesting to me
you know and also he’s a kid in the beginning and he’s in a grown adult at
the end but we’re figuring out it all the the elements of that that
gonna put into it but but my original point was just that biopic films back in
the day were such more epic 70s movies 80 there’s way more epic and had way
more freedom to make a movie that was longer than your typical below two hours
and a lot of it is because I feel like today’s society is so I remember I was
on a plane flight and I was watching a woman she was doing her homework
movie was playing on on her laptop and she was on her phone doing social media
all at the same time and I’m like but don’t you want to pause the movie I was
like I said excuse me are you watching a movie right now she says yeah yeah I’m
watching a movie I said it’s the first time you’ve ever watched it she said
yeah it’s the first time first time watching a movie and she’s doing her
homework and doing social media at the same time at the movies playing I’m like
what’s the point of watching a movie but that’s what that’s the kind of world we
grew up and now everybody’s attention span is even shorter you know so it’s
very interesting in that way you know people I think my brother told me some
film students he was sitting next to and they were like ah I saw The Godfather I
don’t really see what the big point is it wasn’t very good you know it’s
because their attention spans are so short which sad in a way because like
how he’s supposed to feel a movie unless you really get into it you know like
Silkwood sorry to interrupt but I don’t know if you saw that I remember seeing
that as okay yeah it’s pretty intense you have all kinds of movies you just
bring it over that I haven’t seen what actors oh think is it Meryl Streep and
Cher I want to say sorry if it’s wrong I know someone’s gonna write a call it’s
definitely someone I sounds like a movie I’d like to watch it’s it’s it’s intense
and it’s not necessarily a happy ending but it’s about a whistleblower at a
company and it’s some really moved on whistleblower company have I seen it I
don’t know trying to Rack my brain 10,000 hours if I spend more time
watching yeah but I have to check it out you know what I really love to do
actually I used to love to do this all the time is taken actor I’d go on IMDB
and then I’d watched their movie history in order
of every acting role they ever did and nowadays it’s way easier than back when
I was a kid you know I’d have to go to the library or whatever and luckily
Netflix was around at a certain point and you could just go to their library
that’s such a big library but I loved watching how they progressed as an actor
and I liked doing it for film directors too and watching from starting movie to
the next movie and seeing how much they learned and how they progressed as a
filmmaker as well as an actor yeah I think I remember having to go to
Blockbuster to and they had this like huge book there’s almost like a
dictionary and you’d have to like go through it and then try to like
cross-reference stuff and yeah that was my first job my first job was at
Blockbuster which one the one in Oregon yeah what an Oregon yeah and you’d have
your top picks or whatever and so my first I was at Blockbuster and I would
literally like I loved helping people discover new movies you know it’s like a
joy to me back then and you used to get the movies before they came down you
know before normal people got him that was thrilling for a week and then also
you I remember I could rent five movies a week and so that was like a one-way I
could you know watch so many movies it was great so right I always liked the
movies at Blockbuster that there weren’t 50 of them on the wall it was always
these obscure ones and it was a treasure it was it was really a challenge to try
to hunt through and find them you know so it wasn’t necessarily yeah that’s
gone now it’s it’s funny I missed that I did too
I still stand it’s funny because I’ll stand there people that know me well
I’ll stand on the remote on Netflix or whatever and I just like to look and I
spent 30 minutes looking and you know people like what we ever we gonna watch
anything I just like to look I missed that process at Blockbuster just looking
for movies you know and trying to find something new is is very fun for me so I
don’t know yeah I missed that too for a while I got wasted how did you post
casting notices was it on the major sites or before I even get into that
there was one thing I forgot to say earlier Tom because I was talking
earlier about my you know believing in yourself and all that kind of stuff my
dad was a very much a believer and telling me I can do anything that I want
to do in life actually he he wrote a book and he has a
child’s book that’s for sales called a little bedtime journey and I think he
can go to a little bedtime journey calm to get the book but it’s an empowering
hypnotherapist book for children actually where you like count down from
10 and it really makes them believe in themselves and he used to actually read
that book to me all the time when I was a child so just to plug that for him and
he’s such as you know everything that I am is because of him and my mother you
know for supporting me but so I had to plug that but also the casting process
for a while I got wasted so I ended up casting the whole movie myself we hired
we talked to more than one casting director actually and we had these big
casting directors that were gonna help cast the movie and they loved the script
they casted blackish the TV show and a whole bunch of other TV shows they
casted and they loved the script which was it’s always nice to hear people in
the industry high up go hey who wrote this script that’s so good you know that
was great to hear but ultimately their agent talking about of doing it so the
casting directors agent like who are they no they’re nobody special you know
so we ended up losing them eventually because they had to focus on casting
shows and making more money than we were gonna pay him so then we ended up
getting a casting director out of New York and had her go after names
ultimately you haven’t made a feature yet you know I mean me I haven’t made a
feature yet you’re nobody special so names
you got him Wow them with money we didn’t have mountain money so they’re
not dead probably didn’t even read the script so I just like oh please read the
script you’ll love it they by never did so ultimately I ended up casting the
whole movie by luckily I’ve been here long enough that I asked like the
producers owners and black the this producer here this director there hey
can you suggest people and I’d give them the breakdown and they’d send over 10 20
people in an email a lot nice enough to send over 10 20 people who they thought
would be good for the role and I did that and I asked acting schools and just
I mean searched high and low and had every single person do video auditions
and so it was interesting because I I didn’t do in-person ones I would do
the video ones and then I would maybe they are auditioned and they did decent
but they didn’t do that great or did what I want so then I’d call them and
give them coach them on how to do it better and then let them do it again and
so that’s how pretty much it took place but Patrick our lead Patrick Kavanagh I
saw him in a play that Alec so a common friend of ours put on and I saw him do a
play like six seven years before we even shot wall-e oh and I just never forgot
him he was just very talented in the play and he had a likability that I knew
was very charming and it was I thought very Michael J Fox ish now I don’t know
that he’s that in the film because we haven’t playing such a neurotic but he
has that quality has a very likable quality and so I wanted him to do it but
then we were going after names and he was like okay and I kept telling him
please audition do an audition tape for me and he said he would but he never got
around to it and I auditioned like 3040 people and then eventually he did it and
he nailed it and then we didn’t you know it was no question after his tape that
this was the guy that needed to do the pardon I think Patrick did such a great
job in the movie I’m really proud of his performance and then he’s the the lead
in the movie and I’m his counterpart and then the third lead is Erin Groban who
plays Geri in the movie and he’s very much the iconic stoner character that’s
not that smart and constantly doing the wrong things
you know at one point we get finally get rid of the body and he left his wallet
in the pocket you know so there’s like all these kinds of things and why did
you leave the wallet in the pocket oh I don’t like my wallet in my pocket it
gets all crunchy you know like just stupid stuff happen with him and that’s
very much a character that’s iconic in history I mean Jack Black played in an
Orange County and Sean Penn plated in was that high school movie Ridgemont
High yeah and so Erin did a great job and actually Erin did like a commercial
for Seth my partner when he was working for a company but Erin axe and
everything he possibly can he’s just a working actor and he doesn’t care what
it is and you know just going to act and so he had worked with him and like a
just uh not even him like a real acting job it was like talking to the camera I
believe and he’s like well I know this guy he might work and he had a big beard
at the time and I mean he did an audition tape there was moments where I
saw that it could work and so we found him eventually – and it was so hard to
find that role who’s the hardest five one of the hardest roles for me to cast
because people acting stoned is it’s just a very hard thing for
people to do like everybody I believe their acting I don’t believe that really
that person and so you got to find that person that you believe they’re not that
smarter you believe that they’re perma high basically so that was a hard thing
to do but he did I think you did a great job some people I find that people
either love or they hate him they’re either talking about how great
he did or they’re like I really believe that so it’s very much a love or hate
role but that’s any role in history so it’s oh it’s okay Melissa our leading
lady that was hard to find – because I was trying to find somebody who had that
kind of Cameron Diaz in the mask quality or Dumb and Dumber quality that was very
much laughy and fun and never took anybody too serious and it was really
hard to find actresses to do that because the lines they would always read
and it came off either a little bitchy or a little snobby or a little something
that I just didn’t like and Lissa actually lives in Nashville she doesn’t
live in LA and somebody suggested her for the movie and then I reached out to
her and I was like hey would you others for the movie she said yeah but I live
in Nashville you’d have to fly me out for the movie and so I was like oh gosh
and then ever you know the budget for that and and I was like fine you know
what you could just read for it you know did you make an audition tape and I’m
thinking she’ll probably bomb and then we don’t have to talk about the details
later and of course you did the audition tape but she absolutely killed it and
and then I was like gosh shucks sorry I found my I found my Lucy so we ended up
flying her out to do the part and stuff and then we had a lot we had a lot of
luck too with some amazing actors Alex soul who was in
American history acts and he’s in all kinds of movies back in the day he came
out of retirement for the movie and acted in the movie he kicks ass and a
very iconic Russian Roulette scene that people seem to love Larry Hanken came
out for the movie and he’s I mean he’s an icon in my opinion and how many great
movies he’s done from Escape from Alcatraz with Clint Eastwood you know I
mean he’s been around so long and he acts in so many things I managed to get
him in the movie and he did a great job we had Sally Kirkland in the movie who
won I mean she’s won a Golden Globe she’s got nominated for Academy Award
she came out and acted for us so I was just really lucky with my cast and I’m
sure I’m forgetting people that were phenomenal in the cast as well but I was
just really lucky that I found the right people for the roles that we did and I
pride myself on having good actors in the movie because we have to discover
talent you know because we don’t have enough money to get a name or somebody
who’s well known so I literally had to find people that were undervalued on
both sides in front of the camera and behind the camera you have to find
people that are undervalued for their skill at this moment in this time
because all the same people I pie couldn’t afford to hire now a couple
years later because now they are getting paid more to do behind the camera work
and in front of the camera work so do you have an interesting story about LAX
I’ll get to that rewind real quick because if you want celebrity stories
Alex soles part in the movie that his iconic role on the Russian Roulette
scene was actually written for JK Simmons oh well I met JK Simmons one of
the small jobs I had I was inspecting Tesla’s and yes and the company knew was
JK Simmons just one of the Academy Award at the time and so they’re like we know
you’re the movie guy and so I was like their number one person that go do this
kind of stuff and so I went and inspected his Tesla and it was like I
saw whiplash like two days before and I was like man I gotta I gotta take
advantage this opportunity I didn’t know how I was gonna take advantage of it but
I was like okay cool I’m gonna try to strike up a conversation and really try
connect with this person because that’s the that’s and that’s a word of advice
for people to like when you meet a celebrity or somebody that has clout try
to befriend them try to talk to them as a human being don’t try to get a photo
don’t try to even though you probably will end up getting a photo that’s fine
try to connect with them as a human being as to where don’t don’t start
acting stupid or I don’t know geek out on them too much because if you’re in
this field you’re gonna see them again probably and so really try to make a
connection with them so anyway I’m going there the day of I know I’m meeting JK
Simmons I know I’m inspecting his Tesla I show up and I’m like Hannah I really
really hope to connect with him I show up he’s like here’s my Tesla if you need
anything let me know and he walks inside I’m like oh my god I’m sitting there
inspecting the Tesla I can’t think about my job at all of
course he’s getting flying colors on the Tesla trading the Tesla but then he
basically came back out and he came back out and I was like he’s like are y’all
done I’m like yeah but we need to take the car for a drive and I came out put
this on the spot we don’t have to take it for a drive we need to take a drive
and I’m not comfortable driving your car so you should drive I think and I’ll
ride shotgun so I I got him in the car too I got him in the car to drive him I
was like we drove around a little bit and we were making small talk and as
soon as we get in the car I’m like I have to say I’m a little and I wanted to
make him laugh I gotta say I’m a little intimidated I just want watched whiplash
yesterday and just don’t want you to yell at me you know what I mean so I
that’s one of the reasons I didn’t want to drive you know so I got him to laugh
right away which was good and we drove around a bit and I was like why me I
should see what it does on the freeway you know like and I we ended up driving
around for 45 minutes and I kept talking to him about everything about how he
started in LA and everything that he’s done and all this kind of stuff and yeah
it’s very interesting to look back on it but I’d befriended and I ended up
actually shooting a video with him that day because I told him was my sister my
sister’s birthday was like in a couple weeks or something but I sell them my
sister’s birthday coming up is there any way we could do like a little skit where
I’m singing her I’ve talked to the camera I’m seeing her happy birthday and
then you interrupt me and go just hey do it again
you’re off-key just like the movie because I just saw the movie and he
agreed to do it we shot the video right there in it’s like driveway that day he
thought it was cool and it was for somebody’s birthday so he was such a
nice guy and then I told them I showed him the at the time I didn’t make it
Wally I had the trailer for parole officers
and I showed on the trailer for parole officers and he giggled and laughed at
that and then I was like I’m making I’m gonna make my first feature you know is
there any chance he might be able to you know stay in touch and maybe there’s a
roll in there maybe there’s not and he said yeah that’d be fun you know stay in
touch you know and I already had a cell phone number because of the gig and so
we wrote the role in the movie for JK Simmons that role was written for JK
Simmons and then JK Simmons was too busy to do it he it was off in Europe doing a
movie or whatever and and so we ended up having to find somebody to do that movie
and that’s how he found Alex soul who was a friend of Ronald Quigley and
Ronald Quigley who plays Skaggs in the movie suggested Alex oh I didn’t know
Alex was even an option I thought he was retired but apparently he sent him the
script and once he read that part he was in love with it and he was like I’ll
I’ll do whatever I have to do I’ll follow the perp to work I’ll follow the
file the paperwork with sag to get out and come back and do the movie so he
ended up doing it and yeah on on a plane flight actually i sat next to Jimmy
Schmitz and at the time I was very young I didn’t know what to do next you know I
just moved to LA I quit worked for Todd Phillips and and DreamWorks I knew I
wanted to act but I really had no idea how to get started
you know I had no idea how to get started with acting and so I asked Jimmy
Schmitz what to do and Jimmy Schmitz said you should go to this acting
teacher and take acting classes and so I went and
and I started acting school after that after meeting Jimmy Schmitz on a plane
and stuff there’s a lot of good ways for people to get educated out there on how
to make it as an actor there’s a book called cracking the acting code written
by Tasha V Simpson that’s a really great book that goes over I mean and she has
been in the industry so long she literally explains everything you need
to do from start to finish like and so educational and it’s funny because when
I first started out in in acting in LA people would charge you for
consultations like a hundred dollars for an hour you know and you sit down and
they tell you what you need to do and whatever and nowadays you just need to
go buy a book like cracking the acting code and it breaks it all down for you
and you can read it over and over again if you want but when I was and I’m sure
there was books then too you know what I mean
but people it’s funny because our industry so many people are making money
on the underbelly of it on acting classes and books and all these kinds of
things and so there’s so much knowledge out there and a good way but there’s
also so much knowledge out there in a bad way that you don’t know what what is
the good information and what’s the bad information and so that’s one of the
reasons why I say that book is it has a lot of value to it if you’re just
starting out or I think it has chapters to where even when you’re you know at a
higher level maybe you need to break through and you you need more knowledge
in that way as well so that’s important because I think so many books are geared
toward people just starting out but what about people that are actually having
continuous success and then who do you ask for help because I’m sure there’s so
many so many agendas and and yeah things people tell you yeah it’s so interesting
to me because like I didn’t know what a guest star was compared to a co I don’t
even can’t even think of the names now co-star role compared to a guest star
role you know I didn’t know what was the difference between a co-star role and a
guest star role you know man these are the kind of things that you learn the
book and you should know what the what all those things are you know you should
know out what you’re going out for and what sacrifices you know I learned like
once you going in for co-stars and you decide to go to guest stars you don’t go
back to audition for co-star so like there’s certain things like I had no
idea and I auditioned all the time but when you you know you read somebody
Kitaj review Simpsons she’s gone all the way up the levels to learn all those
kinds of things so you can get all that knowledge and that you just you don’t
know no not a lot of people want to help you when you get to those levels
yeah well it’s funny because in the beginning everyone was willing to help
you in and try to help you to get to where you need to be and a lot of people
helping actually have never been there I found that every acting teacher I ever
had had like a co-star role in a TV show one time or something you know and
they’re selling it to the to the ends of the wheels so the people at the top of
the ladder it’s very rare that they share their knowledge you know
especially on the business side of acting I mean the acting side a lot of
people will share but the crack in the acting code goes over everything you
know which is a great book you can get it at cracking the acting cracking
acting code calm you can get at Amazon you can get it locally here at Samuel
French the bookstore and Barnes and Nobles I think as well so you it’s a lot
of places you can find that are true if you just google it you get it on the
website or at Amazon easily but it’s rare that somebody shares their
knowledge when they’re up there at the top and about the business side of
acting which is very interesting as well as the craft so I find that with
everything to it’s funny how that that is its artists and people they feel very
lucky to be where they are and a lot of people that are naturally gifted they’re
terrified that they have a secret and they don’t want to tell everyone the
secret everybody can do what they do they don’t realize they’re naturally so
talented so they usually don’t want to share with other people or help people
get to where they are because usually there’s a self-worth there that they
don’t feel secure enough to help other people so you talked about like sharing
knowledge and and wanting to be generous and I think that’s great and I think
there are people that want to help I think the part that gets weird is some
of the takers there’s so many people that want like you tell me how to do it
so I can just just jump start up here and I don’t have to go through and pay
my dues so I think sometimes people are wary of that and that’s very
understandable mhm because there is that element here and then I hate to you know
throw a bucket of cold water on it but I think that’s speaking truthfully yeah
and so I think that might be sometimes why people pull back because they’re
like okay is this person they want my help but do they really want my they are
they really going to do what I tell them would help them or they are hoping I’m
gonna pull them up with me and all the time I spent now I’m expecting they’re
just gonna circumvent all that and come with you know I I totally understand
that I think it’s funny because a lot of people don’t want to pay their dues
we’re in a world of instant gratification when it comes to social
media when it comes to everything it’s instant gratification and the truth is
if you want to be an act if you want to be a film director it’s a career and it
takes time and I’ve seen the only people that I know that are successful in the
levels of like what they wanted to do they put fifteen years and working hard
I mean Roger V Simpson who wrote that books she didn’t work as an actress 15
years you know and and she’s finally now getting you know all the things she
wanted to get in it takes that much time my my sister she’s a big musicians easy
ward she you know she’s on her third album but her goal is to win a Grammy
you know I mean so it’s like it takes so much time to learn and to to get there
and so yeah people you get shortcuts by learning from other people absolutely if
you can learn from other people I think ego is a problem is the ways ego gets in
the with your greatest strengths and is your greatest weakness in this town you
need to have everything I was talking about us like a strong shell when people
doubt you but you can’t have the ego to think that you’re not learning you know
I’m saying so if you have this strength and belief in yourself that is great but
the moment you think you don’t need people or you don’t need to learn
something that ego is your worst enemy because you need to continue to learn
and continue to get better and that’s the belief you need to have is that
you’re gonna get there and that you’re gonna learn how to get there
not that you’re the the diamond that when you walk into town that you’re just
so shiny that everyone’s gonna love you because that doesn’t exist you might be
really good at acting in your small town in
and that now you’re here around people that look just like you and they’re just
as talented and have more experience so you better get the experience and the
only way for you to get that is to believe in yourself and to keep working
hard to get it so and that’s why I worked so hard on making while II got
wasted and I hope everyone enjoys watching it on Amazon and rents and
bison and please leave us a review we really need reviews on Amazon it really
helps the movie and you can also reach out to me if you want on social media
Adam William Ward on Instagram and I try to I try to respond to all the messages
that people give to me I don’t always get a chance so if I don’t I apologize
but if it’s reasonable I try to say thank you or if people have questions
answering back with the movie sometimes I get a lot sometimes you know some days
I get none so I’ll do my best Adam William Ward on Instagram so if
people want to friend me there you go

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