Your upcoming movie Happy Ending - in a few words, what is it
Phil Condit: Happy Ending
tells the story of what happens when an ALIEN
PREDATOR escapes from a top secret military base in the remote desert and
invades a nearby BORDELLO, forcing the working girls and their Johns to
fight for their lives and humanityís very survival
What were your inspirations when writing Happy
Ending? And why of all places a bordello?
Phil: I wanted to write a story that would be
fairly inexpensive to make, so if all the action could take place in a
single location, the production costs would be low. Next, a staple of low
budget horror movies are scantily clad women. Strip joints have been used
a lot but they are generally in population centers and harder to isolate.
But if my alien escapes from a Nevada Area 51 type military base that is
remote, near the bases are, you guessed it Ö Bordellos!
I also had watched an HBO series called Cat House
that took place in a bordello. I was very surprised to find out that the
ladies who worked there LOVED their jobs! They were not the drug-addicted
crack whores I often thought of as prostitutes. These were sharp, funny,
happy girls who love sex. And they were all a bunch of characters which is
exactly what I wanted for my film.
you all get involved in the project?
Cleve Hall (Monster Man
SFX Artist): How did I get involved in the
project? Phil came to me and said he needed a monster... showed me a rough
sketch... I said How Big? and When?!!
Potts (plays Sarge): Saw the audition notice. Wanted to meet
Phil & Maria Olsen [Maria
Olsen interview - click here]. So, I auditioned.
Dawna Lee Heising (plays Alice): I have a
television show called Eye on Entertainment and I interviewed Maria
last year about her amazing career. She mentioned Happy Ending
and said that Phil Condit wanted to talk to me. I had played a
cougar named Veronica in Phil and his daughter Emilyís really funny film
called Boner. Then I interviewed Phil at the 2013 Shriekfest
Film Festival and he said that he had written a role for me in Happy
Ending. Itís been a dream of mine to work with both Phil and
Maria as they are both such talented professionals, and I am very excited
to be playing Alice!
A Williams (plays Steve): Like any diligent actor, I spend copious hours
sifting through the breakdowns on the casting sites for the most amazing
roles. I submitted for the role of Steve on LA Casting. Soon after I had a
callback and NAILED IT. Fast forward to the now and here I am gearing up
for what I'm sure will my favorite role to date!
Erik A Williams
(plays Roxanne): It's a longish story. I actually met Maria at an
audition a few years ago. When I saw she was my audition partner, I knew I
had seen her face before. She was terrific and I definitely remembered her
from that experience. A little while later, I started seeing her posts on
social media through friends and thought, Wow, that's her! I forget if I
friended her or she friended me, but I had to mention our meeting and she
was so cool about it. Cut to a little later on and Maria had so much going
on and I submitted to audition for a reading for a future project, that is
still in the works, for her MOnsterworks66 production company. I was
totally impressed at the sheer amount of work she was doing and I was very
excited to audition again. Then the casting notice for Happy Ending came
up and the role of Roxanne just jumped out at me. I love horror and it
sounded so fun, I had to submit, even though it's not the type of role I
was going for usually. I can't really say why, but I just had a feeling
about Roxanne and Happy Ending, so I went for it with all I had. Things
seemed to go well and time went by, but instead of fretting about it, I
had faith. Then I got a call back and I was on cloud nine. I went in with
all guns blazing and I was amazed to find out that I had been cast.
Everything seemed to go so well and my feeling that this role was special
turned out to be vindicated. I just felt like I had been touched by a
little bit of destiny. Sounds corny, but it's true. So that's how I was
cast as Roxanne and I love it.
Slaughter (plays Rick): I came in for an audition and met the two
wonderful producers. They gave me the great opportunity to be Rick in this
De Mare (plays Cinnamon): I auditioned for the project, but I had
worked with Phil Condit for years prior as a model.
What can you tell
us about your respective characters, and what will you draw upon to bring
them to life?
Brad Potts: After being in the USMC more than 10 years,
I will have plenty to draw from. The rest is Government Classified.
IHTKYIIT. I'd havta kill ya, if I told.
Dawna: Alice is an ex-showgirl from Las Vegas, who
is now a prostitute at Madame Wangís. She switched to Madame
Wangís because the pay was so much higher and Madame Wang offers
benefits. I see Alice as a mother figure to the other girls and to the
young men who come to see her. She is also an expert with her
Samurai sword and at the card game Slap Jack. I love the outfit that
Phil picked for my character and am taking pole dancing classes every day
to lose a few pounds as the outfit is tiny and the leggings are really
tight. The script is SO funny Ė like Phil himself Ė and I
canít wait to meet the other cast members. Itís going to be a
really fun set and I know the film will win tons of awards, unless Phil
and Maria bring it straight to distribution. Then it will be a major
Erik: I've played some
pretty zany characters. Most of which appeared in my work with offensive
horror comedy team Hack Movies with auspicious titles like
Motherfuckers, CockHammer, and Nixon and Hogan Smoke
upon the roles I played with Hack
and combining what I see as a cross
between Shaggy from Scooby Doo and Barney Stinson from How I Met Your
Mother, I will bring to life a character that is perpetually horny,
hungry, and hankering for alien death!
don't know any other way to describe it, but Roxanne is such a big and
warm hearted character that I kind of just get out of her way and let the
ROOOOXXXXAAANNNNE flow. I think she's very strong and simple, but not
stupid woman, a person who loves her friends and would do anything to help
them, including going up against tentacled monsters from outer space.
She has huge appetites: for food, for love, and for sex and absolutely no
shame. She can't feel bad about who she is because no one ever got through
her tremendous confidence and ever shamed her for what she looks like or
what she does. She's beautiful and she knows it. If she wants a guy, she
can have him. Simple as that. I'm totally serious when I say I have very
little input and Roxanne is in charge. I'm just there to make Roxanne roar
Brad Slaughter: Rick
is a manís man, or at least tries to be. I think he tries too hard to
impress Candy and flounders because of it. I know how this feels myself
and can put that into action. I like Rick and I think I can put some great
work up on the screen.
is like no other. She sweet & innocently a little dense, but, don't
underestimate her either because she may just shock the hell out of you.
I've never played a character like Cinnamon before, so this will be
organically stepping into her skin for me.
Do talk about the rest of your key cast,
and why exactly these people?
OK. So I wrote a script peopled with a bunch of real characters. They were
sharply defined people. I just had to find actresses who embodied these
people. So we put out casting calls with the general physical
characteristics of the girls and that they had to be comfortable with
nudity which occurs in occasionally. We then auditioned until we found our
characters. And we assembled a kick ass cast!
leading lady of my last film, Empress Vampire, Ange Maya, did such a
spectacular job I knew I wanted to work with her again. I had heard of
ďhappy endingsĒ being associated with Asian massage parlors, so I made
Ange the Madam of ďMadam Wangís House of Happy EndingĒ.
I needed a kick-ass, drop-dead gorgeous leading lady who takes the fight
to the alien. So I came up with Candy. Candy had been a vice cop until she
found out just how much hookers got paid for doing something she loved and
without any commitments which she loathed. She jumped the fence and never
looked back. I was blown away when Jill Evyn read for Candy. She is the
embodiment of Candy and extremely DDG (drop dead gorgeous).
in the rest of the ladies is:
Rubenesque Hispanic foodie Roxanne, brought to giggly life by the
delightful Dolores Quintana.
was written as a high-energy, slightly ditzy youthful redhead, but when
Victoria De Mare auditioned, she played her as a cute, loveable, dumber
than a bag of doorknobs, hooker, and totally blew our minds.
Vegas showgirl Alice, played by Dawna Lee Heising in a role written
specifically for her (I had met her when she acted in my daughterís film
Boner and loved her to pieces).
the dominatrix, is played with particular glee by my co-producer and
extremely talented actress, Maria Olsen [Maria
Olsen interview - click here], who occasionally takes to
dominating me, which I find strangely enjoyable!
stunningly beautiful and more than a little vain role of Bridget was won
by the smoking hot Phedra Syndelle.
did I mention we have guys, too?
construction worker Rick has a heart on for Candy, who likes him too but
dreads commitments, is played by the equally hunky Brad Slaughter who
plays the perfect foil for Jillís Candy.
bud is the bone skinny, always hungry jokester, Steve, who finds his food
and love goddess in Roxanne, played to perfection by Erik A, Williams.
Rounding out the cast is Sarge from the military
base who came to life when Brad Potts auditioned for us. He knew exactly
the right blend of macho and humor we were looking for. Dominique is the
object of his affection and she dearly loves paddling him
You of course also have to
talk about your creature/the creature effects for a bit!
I wanted something that was otherworldly. As much as I love a man in a
suit, I wanted something else, I needed something else. This creature
would have to be able to hide effectively in a brothel. I recalled a comic
I read as a kid that had a hand on a long tentacle that would come out of
the sewers and grab people. That sounded like it could hide so I
incorporated that and gave it a multitude of other tentacles and a bulbous
amorphous body Ė of course, dripping with alien goo. The idea creeped me
out so hopefully it will have the same effect on our audience.
am a big fan of practical effects and canít watch films that are mostly
CGI, which is a shame since so many genre films are relying so heavily on
CGI these days. When I thought of practical effects I immediately thought
of Cleve Hall, the SyFy Channelís
Monster Man. It turned out he really
liked the concept and is chomping at the bit to do it.
What can you tell us
about your movie's intended look and feel, and also its brand of humour?
I personally like rich blacks, brilliant colors, and high contrast, all in
a dark, low key setting. I love lighting and plan to use a number of
tricks Iíve learned over the past, uh, shall we say ďfewĒ years? (52
to be precise).
humour is broad, over the top, and often physical in addition to clever
dialog. The timing is key to get humour right. Iíve seen so many lower
budget comedies that should have been funny Ė they had the right
set-ups, they had clever dialog Ė but they lacked the timing, so it just
lay there. I hope to not make that mistake and count on my years of being
a funny guy (non-professional) to make it work.
As far as I
know, you're presently still raising funds for Happy Ending - so
what can you tell us about your fundraising efforts?
Maria Olsen [Maria Olsen
interview - click here] is spearheading a fabulous crowd funding campaign. She flogged
me hard to get the media she wanted to promote the campaign and she is
brilliant for it. We have a visually lush campaign with beautiful and
funny stills of our actors, and videos in which they answer questions
about their character while in character. This gives the audience a good
idea of what the rest of the movie will feel like.
hope to raise 20% of our budget through crowd funding. That will make it
that much easier to secure equity financing. We have an executive producer
lined up to help out once we have that amount raised.
Update: presently you can support the movie by buying merchandise from
their store: http://happyendingmovie.com/store.html
your funds are raised, what's the schedule - and any idea when the film
might be released onto the general public yet?
the funds are raised, we will have approximately 2 to 3 weeks of final
preparations, followed by an 11 day shooting schedule. After that itís
into the editing bay we go and donít come out until itís complete.
That will probably take 9 months to a year to finish with the musical
score, a 5.1 surround track, and color corrected master.
future projects beyond Happy Ending?
Funny you should ask. I set one film aside to shoot Happy Ending first.
The title of that film is Girl Prey. Itís more of a mainstream film with
name stars and a slasher vibe, but with significant differences. The
logline is ďSix spring break coeds are kidnapped by a band of serial
killers and released onto a tropical island to be hunted for sport, but
itís never that simpleĒ. The not so simple part is that the girls
donít go down easy. They give as good as they get. It finally comes down
to one killer and one girl, but with a twist that sets this up with the
potential for a franchise. Another film is Spawn. A what happens when
Rosemaryís baby, who was raised in the Catholic church and has no idea
of his heritage, is seduced by the devilís daughter to finally produce
the Anti Christ. I also have an alien invasion story that is on a larger
scale than Happy Ending and a retelling of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde when a
scientist working on a transporter clones himself, but the clone has no
Brad Potts: Have 2 other features currently in
pre-pro. As well as several other projects. For example:
Dawna: Iím currently shooting a film with Steve
Oakley, Melanie Grunder and Domiziano Arcangeli called Natural Born
Filmmakers, and I hope to be working soon on a film called Carny
Girls with Jared Masters [Jared
Masters interview - click here]. In the future, Iíll be playing The
Snake Woman in Circus of Dread from legendary Australian filmmaker
Mark Savage and Faith Dowling in Lawrence Nelsonís You Found Me [Lawrence
W. Nelson II interview - click here].
Next year Iíll be playing the Outlaw Crego in Jezebeth 3: The
Guns of El Diablo and Iíll be in a SPECTACULAR series of films that I
canít talk about yet. Iím also playing Honora Turner in the
third story called Salvation of One in the feature film Book of
Choices from Chandra Gerson. Book of Choices is currently
filming. I will also be playing Michelle Willoughby in the upcoming
feature film Past Due, which will be directed by Robert Conrad and
star Eric Roberts, and Stella in the feature film Mouthpiece.
Erik: I will soon be
introducing the world to my Amish alter ego Jebediah as a series regular
in Amish Paradise the Web Series also starring many comedy
greats. I will also be playing the lead in the horror thriller
Feeding on Fear, which will be the first in a dark thrillogy called The
Breed coming soon from Midian Entertainment.
Dolores: A few
things: I have a film on the festival circuit currently called Lake Los
Angeles. It just won the awards for best feature, best actor, Roberto
Sanchez of 2Fast2Furious and Gang Related to list his most well known and
recent credits, and best cinematography by a fantastic cinematographer by
the name of Michael Gioulakis, who previously shot John Dies At The
It debuted at the Los Angeles Festival about a month ago and is just
starting its run. I play a prostitute in that one too. I've also been
working on a couple of projects with Craig McIntyre [Craig
McIntyre interview - click here], the director of The
Los Angeles Ripper. We shot a short for the Southern Sykos', the founders
of the PollyGrind film festival Chad Clinton Freeman and Jack Saint, found
footage anthology film, Paranoia Tapes, called Anarchy In LA and another
role in a movie Craig is also making called Future Punks. Both projects
also star a great actor named Randy Tobin [Randy
Tobin interview - click here], who was also the lead in the The
Los Angeles Ripper, which is out on streaming video and DVD through
Troma Entertainment. Do you notice that I seem to have a run of films where the
title includes the city Los Angeles? I have and It's totally cool. I also
work with Alone: An Existential Haunting, an interactive haunted
attraction that had its debut last year. We'll be at the Scare LA
convention this weekend and I will also be a part of Alone: 2014 this
Halloween. On the internet, I am a company member in the sketch comedy
webseries Starving In Hollywood, for Shameless Redhead
is run by Rebecca and Chris Honett. It's available on YouTube and is part
of the FullScreen network. It's chock full of offensive and political
humor and is hilarious and goes places most sketch comedy doesn't. Thank
you so much!
Brad Slaughter: There
is a film and a series that I'm in preliminary works for that I'm
producing. Can't give too many details, but a lot of great things on the
have many projects coming up such as horror/comedy Killjoy Psycho
Circus, horror/thriller 13 Girls, horror/comedy series My BFF
Satan, as well as gritty action feature CAB, where I'll be playing
a serial killer on a rampage!
movie's website, Facebook, IndieGoGo, whatever else?
Puppy Pictures website: http://sickpuppypictures.com/
else you are dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
Youíve rung me like a sponge! The only thing I can add is to encourage
people to support the projects they want to see and resist being
overwhelmed by requests for contributions. Itís amazing how just a few
dollars can make or break a film trying to get off the ground. So take
some of the money youíre saving on DVD rentals by subscribing to Netflix
and throw filmmakers a bone. Youíll be glad when you see the fruits of
thank you for the opportunity to share my projects and love of the genre
with your readers! Ė Phil Condit, SickPuppyPictures.com,
for the interview!