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Dec 20, 2004 at 07:00 PM

More coverage of the cult hit, with interviews of Executive Producer Jerry O'Sullivan.

Casey: What were your impressions being on what was officially your first movie set?
O'Sullivan: It was great to be part of a "group" of people making a movie. In the past the crew had been me, myself, and I. To hook up with these other people, who have mutual interests, made the experience that much more fun. On any given shot, we all had our own little duties. Whether it was spraying fog, dollying the camera or flickering a light (to simulate candlelight), everyone took their part seriously and did their best.
Casey: What did you think of working with Sasha Graham, someone who had an extensive experience with independent features?
O'Sullivan: What a doll. As soon as I met her, I had that "made a new friend today" feeling. She's one of the nicest people I've ever met. Very professional. If she flubbed a line, (which was few and far between), she would get so angry with herself, as if she was letting us down. Very impressed with her and her acting.
Casey: Yeah, great Jeff, you super-stud! Anyway, first day of the shoot, with all the extras &endash; what went through your head?
O'Sullivan: Aside from the fact it was 90 degrees in the shade, it stands out as maybe the coolest day of shooting. We had a lot of crew and probably 20-30 people who stood for hours in the heat just to be a zombie extra. My hat is off to them. The only kink in the day was that two local make-up people didn't show. so John Pinkerton (assisted by Jeff Meyer) had to bust his ass and do it all himself. His work looked great. There was such a distance between the make-up area and the shooting location that we had to communicate by walkie talkie. It felt like we were making a movie with a much higher budget.
Casey: When you met Ron Bonk, what did you think about all this info and details he was throwing past you?
O'Sullivan: By the time I met Ron, I had already talked to him by phone a couple times, and had seen CITY OF THE VAMPIRES and THE SANDMAN. Even though he doesn't like CITY I thought it was pretty good -- especially for a first effort. I was impressed with the box art and quality (lighting, photography etc..) of both films and the connections he had made in the B-biz. He impressed me as being a 'Doer' not a 'Talker'. I had complete confidence in him and the idea that whatever we made from that point would at least equal and more likely surpass those movies.
Casey: Tell me what did you think a movie could be made on s-vhs? Did you like the idea?
O'Sullivan: My past experience had always been with film, super 8 and some 16mm. I was always one of those people who would cover my ears and humm at the mention of video. However as we shot VSWEET, I quickly became a convert. Wireless mics, instant playback, not to mention the cost. Now I feel its the only way to go.
Casey: During the actual production, what struck you the most, or what sticks in your mind when you think back to it?
O'Sullivan: Probably the fact that making movies is so much work and yet we were having so much fun.
Casey: Were their any unforeseen mishapes, little adventures you didn't expect?
O'Sullivan: The only unforseen mishaps that come to mind is the scene where Jeff Forsyth's character is battling the Toxic Mutant Monster. Jeff hits him in the back with a stick-half of which bounces back and hits him in the eye! Also on the same scene, a drunk from a nearby bar, (who apparently heard Sasha's screams), wandered into the woods to our location. He stood there in silence just staring at all of us for about 5 minutes! He had that "I'm gonna start swinging any second " look about him! Finally he asked us what we were doing, we told him, and he stood there in silence for about another 5 mins, before turning and staggering back toward the bar. He was one creepy lookin' dude!
Casey: Did you feel at all inspired to make your own movie after working on VSWEET and seeing it done, right in front of you and for little money?
O'Sullivan: I had written GUT-PILE as a short many years earlier. It was always intended for film. VSWEET showed me that it could be "fleshed out", and shot on video, utilizing some of the same cast/crew at a cost that would not involve outside financing . Also Ron's knowledge of Distribution was something that I had never acquired.
Casey: Bob Licata, the other actors, the crew guys &endash; can you talk briefly about a few of them and what you observed?
O'Sullivan: Bob Licata was great. Very dedicated. An all around nice guy as well. Always on time and staying late-even when he had to get up early the next morning. The same can be said of Jeff Forsyth, Jason Wicks, Al Marshall, Jeff Meyer, John Pinkerton etc.. Theresa Constantine also did a great job and was a lot of fun. Actually, there is'nt anything bad I can really say about the shoot, ( except for a couple crew guys who came/went). The National Enquirer would have come away dissapointed.
Casey: What do you think Ron did best as a director? What impressed you?
O'Sullivan: That he stuck firmly to the shooting schedule. When you're "in charge", I think people can be tempted to say "ahh lets do that tomorrow", especially on a day when you run into a lot of difficulties. He proved that rehearsing often with the actors prior to shooting-will pay off when the camera rolls. Also he adapts easily to unforseen circumstances. Important at this level. Casey: Well Jerry, let's warp this up by telling the readers what are your future production plans?
O'Sullivan: Right now they are to finish GUT-PILE and get that released. Next I will Co-Produce a movie with Ron Bonk. A Sci-Fi flick to be directed by Jeff Forsyth. I will also serve as Producer for a couple projects that Ron has up his sleeve, which he will direct. My next "gig" as Writer/Director may be a short, which would be the main focus of a possible Halloween attraction to be located in Syracuse.Beyond that, two movies SPOOKHOUSE and MORGUE MONSTER are in the infant stages.
Casey: Best of luck to you!

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