Your new movie ReSet - in
a few words, what is it about?
movie is about a young college student named Danielle who gets kidnapped
by a disturbed man named Edgar. Edgar has serious issues with women
rejecting him and has been driven murderous by his inability to connect
with others. Danielle fortunately does have a magic artifact that allows
her to ďresetĒ and try different ways of escaping Edgarís fortified
What were your sources of inspiration when writing
genesis of this movie came to me from watching other thrillers and
thinking, would I survive, or would a person really survive that
situation? Being in the military for so long I find myself constantly
evaluating movies on a tactical level, like what are the advantages and
disadvantages. Looking at this situation, a young woman held hostage
by a serial killer in the middle of nowhere with no special training,
sheís totally going to die. So how do I let her die and still somehow
have a chance?
With a time loop being the centerpiece of ReSet,
how easy or hard is it not to not lose the plot in this loop as a writer?
And how much fun is it to write that many variations on the same scene?
I knew I was going to have very little money for this film so I wrote a
script that could be shot in a few locations with few actors but would
hopefully still be interesting. This plot allowed me to save effort on the
location and still have variety in terms of events. In many ways, once I
mapped out the logical progression of Danielleís character, the script
became easier to write because I could start each scene at the important
of the hardest things about writing is beginning the scene and ending the
scene. We walk into a room and talk and hang out for 20 minutes with the
family member in the room and then leave in real life but in a movie the
scene can only last a minute, and for me it can be so hard and time
consuming to write the character walking in and leaving the room and make
it feel organic. The time loop allowed me to skip to just the important
part of the scene.
can you tell us about
ReSet's approach to the
wanted to go for realism. This was the most realistic progression of
events that I could think of. Hopefully people canít find too many plot
holes in it.
ReSet being limited to
(mostly) just one location, what were some of your techniques to keep things
visually interesting throughout?
put a lot of thought into shot selection and how it would affect the
story. I figured that I would have to use the budget through the most
creative ways I could think of. I wanted to make different locations
visually different but still maintain continuity. If I had a bigger budget
I would have been able to have her destroying a lot more of the set.
A few words about your
overall directorial approach to your story at hand?
to squeeze every ounce of tension and drama from each second. Iím
particularly fond of the close up shots when Danielle realizing how
dangerous the situation is when she first wakes up in Edgarís house.
talk about ReSet's cast, and why
exactly these people?
were simply the best fit for the two main characters. I loved the height
difference between her and him, it really helped stack the deck against
her. The supporting actors were local. Ben Barlow and Alyssa Corella were so good and
they worked really well with each other.
What can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the
definitely learned a lot of lessons about how to manage a shoot. I feel
embarrassed to admit this but one of the biggest mistakes I made was
trying to house cast and crew in the shooting location. Fellow filmmakers,
Donít Do That! Things were starting to get a bit stressed towards the
end but overall everyone stayed motivated and brought it home. Also, the cinematographerís
brother is a really good cook. He cooked some meals
for the cast and crew.
Anything you can tell us about
audience and critical reception of
far more people like the movie than not which makes it worth having been
made. Hopefully the movie makes enough money to pay off the loans I took
to make it and I can make my next movie.
Any future projects you'd like to share?
am currently working on the production packet for my next feature. Once I
pay off ReSet
I will start raising funding for the next project. Iím
going to keep the plot tightly under wraps until itís time to advertise.
got you into filmmaking to begin with?
have these stories scratching around in my head and itís so important to
me to be able to make them so that they donít drive me crazy. Iíve
loved the way that movies have been able to make me feel and I hope to
create those feelings in others.
What can you tell
us about your filmwork prior to
is my first job as a filmmaker. I graduated from the New York Film Academy
in 2016. I wanted to get a job in the industry but unfortunately,
realistically, unless you know somebody you basically must be able to work
for free for a few years until you build enough contacts. I couldnít do
that, so I came back into the Army and decided to just self-finance.
How would you describe yourself as a director?
like the ability to manipulate reality, to create a whole universe from my
mind. Iím very active and hands on. I hate writing things or sitting
down. I love to act out scenes. Also, I slate all of my own shots.
who inspire you?
ones that inspire me right now are the ones that can do the best with the
lowest budget. Kevin Smith showed with Clerks that a great script can make
a microbudget film good. John Carpenter showed with Halloween that
meticulous direction can make a schlocky premise into a modern classic.
Robert Rodriguez showed with El Mariachi that you can make a compelling
action thriller with essentially film processing money if youíre a bit
Your favourite movies?
want to say that seeing Independence Day as a kid in the theaters really
solidified my desire to tell stories and feel the power of storytelling. I
will strongly defend that movie till my last day.
and of course, films you really deplore?
movies are bad because they are really badly made on a technical level,
some have ridiculous plot holes, some have characters who make baffling
decisions, some are offensive or ugly. But some movies are terrible simply
because there is nothing good about them. Mulan (2020) was the worst movie
I sat through that year because there was not one minute where anything
interesting happened, not one interesting character, not one quotable line
of dialogue, and not one visually arresting moment. I am not kidding, I
would rather watch Samurai
Cop, The Room, Battlefield
Earth, or Pluto Nash
than rewatch the live action Mulan.
movie's website, social media, whatever else?
else you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
my movie and all of your wildest dreams will come true!
for the interview!