Your upcoming featurette Masks - in a few words, what is it
about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?
was originally conceived as a stand alone short film by Charles
A. Christman III and was expanded into a three part series of shorts. It
centers on my character, Steve, who is a drug addict and also on Anthony
Horton's character of The Mask. The featurette delves into how both of
their lives intersect and are altered after The Mask attempts to kill
Steve. It's a psychological horror.
did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much of Roberto
Lombardi can we find in Steve?
I have a family member who
is a drug addict and I have experience working with law enforcement, so I
pulled from those experiences to create Steve. There's a bit of me mixed
in there in how Steve reacts to being threatened and how he deals with the
How did you get involved
with the project in the first place, and how did you end up on the
production side of things as well?
Anthony had worked with
Charles before and had already been cast as The Mask. He suggested me to
Charles for the Steve role. I read the script and fell in love with it!
During rehearsals for the first film, Charles asked me to get involved
with producing which led to me directing the second film (as Charles acted
in it) and helping to cast the second and third films. I also wrote the
"Crazy Kruck" murder scene, so I've worn a few hats on these
What were the major
challenges of bringing Masks
to life from a producer's point of
The only real challenge we had was scheduling and the
change of seasons. These films take place during winter and summer, so
just waiting for snow to melt causes a delay! Plus we had to factor in
actor and crew schedules to the equation during production and in post.
To what extent could you identify with Masks'
horror theme, and what can you tell us about the movie's approach to the
I think the core of these films and its two central
characters is self realization. The Mask is a family man who has dark
thoughts he can't come to grips with until one day his true purpose in
life becomes clear to him. Steve is wasting his life away on drugs, is an
opportunist and comes to realize his true addiction after his encounter
with The Mask. I can identify with the self realization aspect of the
has a late 70's to mid 80's approach to horror. Very
psychological and cerebral, yet scary in that you never know when the
right set of circumstances can make a person just "snap"...
Do talk about Masks' director Charles A.
Christman III for a bit, and what was your collaboration like?
is not only the director, but a writer and producer on this project. He
found all the locations also and has been the main coordinator of Masks
since 2013. He is extremely focused and dedicated to making his work the
very best it can be. He doesn't settle for anything less. From an actor's
standpoint, he is one of the most collaborative directors I've worked with
and welcomes an actor's perspective on their character. Plus, he's a
jokester on set! Shoot days were so much fun! Even though I directed the
second film, Charles really was in charge of piecing together and
directing the featurette with the help of the producers. I'm looking
forward to working with him again.
few words about your co-stars, and as a producer, did you have a hand in
any of the casting?
I worked with Anthony Horton, Walter
DeShields, Christian Chase, Jesus M. Villanueva and W. Keith Sgrillo on
other projects and not only are they talented and easy to work with, but
we're all really good friends. It's a gift to work with people you really
like. Everyone in our cast was great! I was responsible for casting
Christian Chase and Jesus M. Villanueva.
What can you tell us about the shoot as such,
and the on-set atmosphere?
Very focused on the work, but
fun! When you get a group of friends together on a film, you can't help
but tell war stories. It makes for an amazing filming experience. Even
some of the less comfortable scenes were made fun. We kept telling Charles
he needed more snow on his head because we just wanted him to put more
snow on his head! Not because he needed it! Stuff like that.
As far as I know, the film's
still in post production as we speak - so any idea yet when the movie
might be released onto the general public, however tentatively?
film will be completed in early June of 2017. At that point it will be
submitted into several film festivals. We're also looking into a venue in
Philadelphia for an official premiere and after it finishes it's festival
run we'll be looking into a home video release for the featurette as a
future projects beyond Masks
you'd like to share?
always have upcoming projects that I can't announce yet unfortuantely, but
other than Masks
in June I have a film called The Watcher of Park Ave
coming out in December. It's a crime drama/horror thriller that also
stars Amanda Wyss and Lisa Wilcox.
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
Facebook for Masks
and you can find me on all the usual social media (Facebook, IMDb,
Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube):
you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
think that just about covers everything for now! Hope to see you at
another festival sometime soon, Mike!
for the interview!
Thank you as well for covering Masks!