Thursday, April 28, 2016

ACTRESS SPOTLIGHT - ANNELISE NIELSEN







Daily Film Forum Exclusive::
From theater to film, and the new upcoming horror / thriller “The Samaritans” join us for A moment with rising star
Annelise Nielsen


DFF: Your new project, The Samaritans - what’s it about, and tell us about your character in it and how you want to bring it to life?

AN:
The Samaritans is about a group of four ambitious entrepreneurs who have been developing hot new apps together for a while. However, they have never met in the real world. Stumped on their newest project they decide to finally come together for an in person meeting, but something interrupts them. Suddenly pitted against each other, this “innocent” team finds they have more in common than they thought. The past is back to haunt them and they will either become each other’s saviors or executioners. 
Rosie, my character, is the copy writer of the project. With an intense focus on language, her quick wit pierces through any bullshit -pardon the term. But truly, she is a clinical observer, which makes her extremely adaptable. As copy writers change their rhetoric to fit their client, Rosie is able to fit to those around her, which could make her a dangerous chameleon. Her words become her reality, which in turn becomes her nightmare.  


DFF: How did the project come together in the first place, We heard many auditioned for the role of Rosie which you landed. How does if feel to be casted in a horror project?

AN: This is such an incredible opportunity and I just hope I can keep up - especially with it being a horror film - in this genre you fall behind you get killed!! But truly it is such an exciting script and story —I know its going to be a blast. 


DFF: Your theater credits are very impressive, how do you like going from theater to film?

AN: Going from theater to film is certainly a challenge, but one that simply requires taking the energy of the character and condensing it from that which can fill a huge auditorium to something that fits the range of the camera. It still requires so much play and awareness, but you can send all of that creativity right into the lens, which allows it to be much more intimate. I’m finding this film to be the best transition I could hope for as the horror genre  - and the Samaritans in particular - allows for some of the big emotions and kooky character work of theater to still exist.  


DFF: From “The Brink of Us”, “Closer”, “Spring Awakening” & “Seven Deadly Sins” what have you learned from your experiences on stage with such great productions?

AN: Theater has allowed me to find all of the characters within myself. With each new project I’ve had to find my truth within it - rather than putting a character on - you find a side of yourself that can allow that person to come through. And theater, even more so than film, allows you to find that side of yourself not only emotionally but physically and vocally. Finding fun physicality always brings the character to life for me and then its just a joy to play in that body in that new world.  I think through character work you find that there is a universal truth - something innately human that connects us all, which makes it easy to adapt and understand someone else's perspective. 


DFF: Doug Bollinger is the Director of The Samaritans. He has Directed & wrote films such as “Mail Order Bride” & “Waltzing Anna” has worked with Oscar Award Nominee Danny Aiello, Artie Lange, Vincent Pastore & Emmanuellle Chriqui. How does it feel to be under his direction in the horror / thriller The Samaritans?

AN: Through all of my nerves it is nice to know that I am in beyond capable hands. Doug is an incredible director because he also works as an actor. He can direct because he has that perspective and knows howthe crazy actor brain thinks. He brings his vision to life by setting an amazing example and falling completely into his work, and then brings his lucky cast on the journey with him. 


DFF: Along with Bollinger, Cory Green, a talented editor & cinematographer has had an Emmy nomination, Keith Collins is a multi award winning producer & actor seems like you couldn’t be in greater hands as far as production. How do you feel about joining the cast with them behind it?

AN: I am so blessed to be working with such wonderfully talented but also just wonderful people. The whole team is so gifted and experienced and I am certainly overwhelmed with fear of letting them down, but their talent is so great I know whatever I do will be elevated to an unparalleled level. Between the magic that Cory can piece together and the care with which Keith orchestrates a production, I think the final product will be unlike anything I’ve ever been a part of.  


DFF: We hear you are also a choreographer? Please share some details on it with us & any current news?

AN:
I am - all of that physical theater training and years of studying dance just couldn’t be kept bottled up. I love choreography because I think that sometimes there is an element to our experiences that words just can’t fully capture. For me to move and express physically targets something even deeper within a story. 
I am currently working with RealLive Theater and their production of “The Life and Death of Queen Margaret” that will be developed and performed this summer in Western Massachusetts. For updates check out reallivetheatre.net


DFF: Any future projects you'd like to share?

AN: I am also working with Palina Jonsdottir and Columbia University on August Strindberg’s “A Dream Play” which will be at the Schapiro Theater May 13th through the 15th. 


DFF: What can you tell us about the career of yours, what got you into acting, did you receive a formal education on the subject?

AN: Though I’m just starting in the world of film I have been acting and performing for as long as I can remember. Its always been a dream of mine but I started to truly understand the craft of it at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where I studied everything from Shakespeare and Commedia dell’arte to Viewpoints and Suzuki. Since moving to the city I have tried to expand my skills even further and have taken classes with the Upright Citizen’s Brigade and Sean McLeod. 


DFF: How would you describe yourself as an actor?

AN: I’d have to say I’m pretty goofy - I trend towards comedy but I think that’s because of a willingness to play in order to explore the range of the character and the world. I love to focus on the nuances of language - word choice can tell a lot about a person - and of course my forte is movement.
 


DFF: What Actors inspire you?

AN:
I am incredibly inspired by Carey Mulligan, Brie Larson, Tina Fey, and Amy Poehler — basically badass ladies that have created such incredible careers through what I think is an unbelievable understanding of what it is to be a woman - finding the delight, the devastation, and of course humor
of it all 


DFF: How about some of your personal favorite films to watch?

AN:
Some of my favorite films would have to be An Education, Never Let Me Go, Once, and for sure Hot Fuzz.   


DFF: Your website, Facebook, twitter or whatever else you’d like to shout out?

AN: Check out my website annelisen.com and follow me on Instagram @petitedane to check out some pictures from set


DFF: Anything else you’d like to mention or that I forgot to ask?

AN:
Can’t think of anything - think we covered it all


DFF: Thanks for the interview with us Annelise!

AN: Thank you!!


Tuesday, April 26, 2016

GirlFight: Model Kombat Enters Pre-Production

GirlFightMovie.com, LLC today announced its new feature film, GIRLFIGHT: MODEL KOMBAT, has now entered Pre-production.

The ultra-violent nightmare horror feature film where girls fight with brass knuckle, barb-wire, and glass fistfights to the death inside a brutal steel cage - all for a chance at a multi-million dollar contract with an international modeling agency and is inspired by true events.

The film has completely cast all major female roles and location scouting is on the way. An FX team has been established and further publication on these matters are pending.

GIRLFIGHT is expected to hit major theaters before being released by GirlFightMovie.com, LLC on Blu-ray/DVD, Amazon Prime, iTunes and Netflix.

Kelcey Coe serves as the film's Executive Producer.


GirlFight Synopsis
Inspired by true events, GIRLFIGHT empowers women by shattering through the glass ceiling, opening doors to an all-female ensemble featuring many models and actresses from various genres put into movie roles in this deadly martial arts mashup typically oriented to males.

Think You Want to be a Model... Think Again!

It's the annual Spring Break and mafia-controlled Buckeye City is looking to make a killing. Not only will the city be bustling with the cutest college coeds but Ohio's Next Top Model Fashion Show looks to award the best girl with a cash prize and contract into a state-wide agency.

Beat the Best... Or Die Like the Rest!

When the world's deadliest assassins, Russell Brown, and his wife, deadly yet sexy femme fatale and model wannabe Rachel, catch wind of this news, they capture the opportunity to lure the show's talent into a deadly bloodsport tournament by offering them a chance at a multi-million dollar contract with an international modeling agency.

How Bad Do You Want It?

Hungry for fortune and glory, the girls go all out in proving you have to beat the best... or die like the rest to be the best - from betrayal to literally tearing each other to shreds! Allegiances will be tested; alliances will be broken - no one can be trusted! Girls just want to fight like a girl throughout this elaborately caged model combat like never before imagined!

It's a Bloodsport... For Girls Only!

Brutal bare knuckle and brass knuckle boxing to bone-brunching fistfights with barb-wire and glass fuel this ultra-violent nightmare horror feature film from GirlFightMovie.com, LLC!

GIRL POWER... FEMINISTS UNITE!

GIRLFIGHT empowers women by shattering through the glass ceiling, opening doors to an all-female ensemble featuring many models and actresses from various genres put into movie roles in this deadly martial arts mashup typically oriented to males. Careful consideration and intricate detail was ensured to make sure the film portrays women in a positive light, respecting women as human beings and not objects. Women in the film do not share common gender-based roles - many times the women are actually in charge and the men are inferior to the women. They are often very strong, independent, and capable characters to which younger women can relate.

Although the premise of the film consists of brutal cage fights heavily filled with graphic, ultra-violence, where the characters fight to earn specific fortune and glory, it also encompasses reasons why these individual women are fighting. These reasons add to the character development and further enrich the story, based on real women stories matched against very tough obstacles - whether it involves kids or personal gain. The film does not objectify women - there is no sex or nudity, and, although under false pretenses, the women choose to be at this tournament - there is no kidnapping or even scenes of human trafficking. The profanity is mild than that found in an American highschool and the film is enriched with a strong story and morale, making it as appropriate for junior high and high school students as popular literature from The Odyssey to The Hunger Games. All of this makes the film both progressive and revolutionary, two components necessary to deliver such an inspiring message to an audience in today's ultra-violent rich popular culture.

Overall, the film examines the psychological conditions of women put under these stressful circumstances, giving them a powerful voice for recognition and acknowledgement, as symbols for strong and independent women rather than inferior humans to a male-dominated patriarch.

About Kelcey Coe
Kelcey Coe is an aspiring film-maker who has served as a production assistant on James E. Wilson, Don 'The Dragon' Wilson, and Cynthia Rothrock's The Martial Arts Kid (2015), an associate producer on Cody Knotts' Pro Wrestlers vs Zombies (2014) starring pro wrestling legends "Rowdy" Roddy Piper & "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan and art production assistant on Stewart Schill's Frank vs. God (2014). He has worked in different MMA aspects with Hollywood producer, actor, and worldwide kick boxer, Don "The Dragon" Wilson (Bloodfist 1-8) and the late Hollywood actor, fight choreographer, and stuntman Donnie Hair (Mortal Kombat). He resides in Ohio with his two cats - Spooky & Scrappy. He earned his associates degree two weeks after graduating high school and possesses a Masters of Business Administration from Franklin University in Columbus, Ohio.

The Teaser Trailer is available:
https://www.youtube.com/embed/deNx2XNMZhY

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Patrick Faucette Steps in a Pivotal Role in the Tupac Shakur Biopic “All Eyez on Me”

Morgan Creek Productions has wrapped the much-anticipated Tupac Shakur biopic All Eyez On Mefeaturing Patrick Faucette whose role was opposite the lead Demetrius Shipp Jr. (Tupac).

“I am very excited to be a part of the Tupac story,” said Faucette who was tapped by Director Benny Boom for the role of Oliver.  “I played the moderator at the 1993 Indiana Black Expo where Tupac gave a game-changing speech about thug life which is still circulating on the internet.”  The film, expected to be released later this year, chronicled the legendary rapper’s prolific life from his formative years to his tragic death.

Faucette, a native of Willingboro, New Jersey, has a recurring role on Tyler Perry’s “The Haves and Have Nots” as Tony Watson, who lobbied to take his estranged son Benny Young (Tyler Lepley) off life support to take his kidney. As a result, Faucette became a community advocate about the need for organ donors and kidney disease awareness. His TV credits include "The Office," "Southland," "Hot in Cleveland," and "Cougar Town."

Faucette is repped by Littman Talent Group, Eileen O'Farrell Personal Management, Clear Talent Group, and Platinum Star Public Relations.

“All Eyez on Me” is produced by James G Robinson, David Robinson and LT Hutton. Executive produced by Afeni Shakur and Michael I. Rachmil. Open Road is the domestic distributor. The screenplay was penned by Jeremy Haft and Ed Gonzalez.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Wounded Veterans featured in a NALIP Latino Lens short film directed by combat veteran

 Combat veteran Rebecca Murga has been awarded a grant from the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) Film Incubator to tell the fictitious story of a Colombian-born immigrant, who was wounded in the Afghanistan war.

The film follows a wounded warrior, played by real-life combat veteran and resident of San Antonio, Juan Amaris, on his first day home. It's the first time he sees his larger-than-life Colombian family after he is released from the hospital on Halloween night.

Juan Amar is originally from Cali, Colombia. He served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army deployed to Iraq where he was injured in theater on June 20, 2006. He was burned over 77% of his body and lost the use of both hands.

"The story is based on my experience interviewing soldiers in Afghanistan, as well as some of the documentary work I did at Brooke Army Medical Center, in San Antonio with wounded warriors," said Murga. "The audience will get a deeply authentic experience because the main character will be played by my dear friend, Juan. Given the topic of immigration in this country, I thought it was important to see the sacrifice of immigrants, and how they were effected by the war."

Juan recalled the day of the explosion, "When the fuel truck blew up, I just turned my face and that's why my face didn't get burned but my uniform I couldn't take it off. My T-shirt burned on top of my body." His motto today is "I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you... YOU are in charge of your attitude."

Announced at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival Latino Reels panel, the grant is funded by the Time Warner Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Also announced by NALIP, HBO would sign on to distribute the films on one of their digital platforms in an effort to increase diverse voices in filmmaking.

The NALIP film incubator, funded by the Time Warner Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, will provide contributions for pre-production, production, and postproduction tools, resources, and assets to support the four filmmakers in the program. NALIP will also consult with filmmakers on a viable distribution strategy to maximize exposure at the Latino Media Summit. In June, they will premiere the films in front of investors and producers, with the intent of getting the feature film funded.

Latino Lens, presented by NALIP and supported by a group of industry, media and organizational sponsors, is a new, exclusive incubation and media content production program designed to develop, nurture and produce a series of creative Latino projects. Serving simultaneously as a distribution model of Latino media screenings, festivals and speaker showcases, the Latino Lens program highlights Latino talent as producers, directors and writers.

"With Latino Lens, NALIP is thrilled to provide original production programming and support and promote Latino content creators and filmmakers. With the embarrassing and shameful lack of diversity seen yet again at this year's Oscars, NALIP focuses on actions that directly address this need for change within and without Hollywood's antiquated system," said Axel Caballero, Executive Director of NALIP.

About Filmmaker Rebecca Murga

Rebecca Murga, Army Reservist, is an award-winning filmmaker who works in Los Angeles as a writer and director. She produces and directs short films, commercials, and digital series in both English and Spanish. Currently serving as a Captain and Public Affairs Officer in the US Army Reserve, Rebecca has deployed to Iraq, Kuwait, and Afghanistan. She was a 2015 participant in the prestigious AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women. She is a recipient of the U.S. Army Keith L. Ware Award for excellence in broadcast journalism. Learn more at www.rebeccamurga.com.

About NALIP

The National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) seeks to inspire, promote, and advocate for Latino content creators in media. As an established non-profit organization, NALIP advances the development of Latino content creation through its programs focusing on narrative, documentary, TV, and digital formats. For more information, visit www.NALIP.org.

Learn more at www.onehalloweenthefilm.com.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

"Seeking Valentina," Nominated for 5 Awards at Bare Bones International Film and Music Festival

The thriller short garnered 5 award nominations, including Best  Thriller Short Film , from Bare Bones International Film and Music Festival,  the premier film festival in Oklanoma, and one of the oldest and most respected film festivals in the United States. Nominations were made offical on the Bare Bones web site on March 25,2016.

"Seeking Valentina," follows Benjamin (Ali Bavarian), an Iranian-American writer mourning the loss of his dead wife.  When Valentina (Kristin West), a mysterious and whimsical tenant comes to take up residence in his home and then abruptly disappears, it is for the audience to decide if Valentina is a ghost, a dream, a hallucination or a runaway.  The short was shot in three Southern California counties, over six days and with locations spanning 500 miles.  Seeking Valentina has garnered international attention due to its excellent casting, unique storytelling structure, production value and compelling themes. Bare Bones International Film and Music Festival nominated the film for four acting awards, reflecting its powerhouse ensemble cast. Seeking Valentina's four acting nominations include:  Kristin West(Rachel Dratch's Late Night Snack)  for Best Actress in a Short, Vida Ghaffari(Mind of Mencia)  for Best Supporting Actress in a Short, Srinivasa Kapavarapu(Outsourced)  and Armin Nasseri(Angry Black Women), both for Best Supporting Actor in a Short.  Nasseri said, "We are honored by the nominations for our actors.  Our cast really brought this challenging and engaging film to life."  Nasseri vigorously resisted stereotyping throughout his production, and cast many actors against type.

Regarding his film's recent success both in the U.S. and abroad, Nasseri says, "I am deeply humbled and honored that Seeking Valentina continues to touch such a diverse audience.  It is an honor to screen our film at Bare Bones International Film & Music Festival and I am humbled by the nominations.  Lead actress and producer Kristin West said, "We have received such a warm welcome already from Bare Bones-and we haven't even arrived there yet.  Bare Bones has a reputation for being a welcoming festival and their hospitality has already exceeded my wildest expectations."  Nasseri will also be a panelist on the Short Filmmakers Panel on Saturday, April 23rd, at 2:30 PM at the Roxy Theatre.  West is scheduled to moderate the Student Filmmakers Panel, Saturday, April 23rd, at 3:55 PM at the Muskogee Library.

The festival was created by filmmakers, screenwriters and actors and was created for filmmakers, screenwriters and actors who are involved in independent motion picture projects anywhere in the world.

Named one of the "25 Festivals worth the entry fee" by Moviemaker Magazine and named one of the "20 best festivals for new and emerging filmmakers." PBS included Bare Bones as one of the top 20 documentary festivals.   The Bare Bones Film Festival experience has long been touted as the "Friendliest Film Festival" by the many filmmakers who return year after year.

The festival will feature narrative and documentary features, short documentary, short narrative and student films, music videos, animation and live screenplay readings in it's competitive program.

The Bare Bones Film and Music Festival runs April 19-24 2016 at nine different venues. "Seeking Valentina" screens Friday April 22 at 7:45pm at The Roxy Theatre,220 W. Okmulgee St. Muskogee, OK 74401.

Seeking Valentina follows its run at Bare Bones International Film & Music Festival with an engagement at the Las Vegas Galaxy Film Awards on April 29 and a screening at Iranian Noor Film Festival later this summer, with more dates being announced.