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McCleery, Mick on The Alien Agenda PDF Print E-mail
Written by By Kevin Lindenmuth   
Apr 07, 2004 at 02:00 AM
Mick McCleery is a name firmly associated with the world of independent, low-budget productions. The star of such films as ADDICTED TO MURDER (Brimstone 1995), which had a widespread release in the U.S. through Blockbuster Video, and his own THE KILLING OF BOBBY GREENE, he is currently seen in the first installment of the ALIEN AGENDA series, OUT OF THE DARKNESS. At the October \'96 Chiller Convention where he was promoting his new endeavor, he managed to slip away to answer a few questions.
Q: It seems that you\'re usually cast as \"the loner\" in the films you\'ve been in. Are there any other roles you\'d specifically like to do?
Mccleery: Well, there are certainly a ton of roles I\'d like to sink my teeth into as an actor. Always playing \"The Loner\" character can cause me to start feeling like my acting career has hit a serious plateau. As far as dramatic roles that I\'m looking forward to doing, I\'m developing a script of my own called THE BODY, and if I can get this into production I would be playing a regular old guy, who with his friends gets into some serious trouble with the Mafia. Sort of a buddy movie, but not quite. I\'ve already promised myself, that if I do this film, I will not brood. NO BROODING! I know, I know, anyone who has seen me in a film expects me to brood at least once, but I\'m going to do my very best not to.
Q: Tell us a bit about your involvement in THE ALIEN AGENDA: OUT OF THE DARKNESS. Your segment, about a man who is on the run from the law for killing his family--when actually, his doppelganger did it--is very dark. What prompted you to tell this tale?
Mccleery: Well, actually it started as my senior thesis at Temple University. This was way back in 1991 and I wanted to pay homage to an old TV show I had been watching quite a bit of at the time. The show is THE FUGITIVE. No, not the movie with Harrison Ford! The old show from the early sixties with David Jansen. I had been watching the show religiously on the NJ Network since 1988 and wanted to make a movie that had a similar style and atmosphere as that show. In fact, if you look at my lead actor, John Collins, he looks and acts quite a bit like David Jansen did when he was in the original FUGITIVE. So I constructed a story about this man on the run, who is also searching for something, or someone that will end his run.
Q: How did you cast the movie? John Collins is perfect as the man on the run.
McCleery: Well, believe it or not, this was John Collin\'s very first acting role. Well, actually, he had played an extra in my 1989 feature, CROOKS, total screen time.. .30 seconds!. I met him while working in the produce section of a supermarket. He worked there as well, best damn lettuce spritzer in the Tri-State area! In fact, he is the guy who turned me on to the original FUGITIVE TV show. But if everyone must know -- forgive me, John Collins -- I think he is a little bit crazy. He thinks he is the \"Fugitive.\" I\'m not kidding, he has patterned his actions, his speech, his mannerisms, even his lifestyle after the FUGITIVE. Even now, if I want to find him it\'s very hard. Why? You ask. Because he is a man on the run! He is THE FUGITIVE! Hey, he may be insane, but it sure does work in the movie. He wasnt\' just acting -- He was living the part! Since then he has appeared in two more shorts of mine; THE SHOOTING, which is part of the TWISTED TALES anthology (currently being re-released with a video supplemental), and THE HEIST, which is part of my upcoming OF ANIMALS AND MEN: COMEDY FOR THE DERANGED! The other lead in LIMITED VISION was a guy that I had shared a number of acting classes in college with -- Marcus Zanders. Marcus was always one of the better actors in my classes and he played the part of Joey Potts very well. It is interesting to contrast the trained actor (Marcus Zanders) with the untrained actor (John Colins) in the film, though. I\'ve had as many people, if not more, tell me they thought John was the trained \"actor\" as people who thought Marcus was the trained \"actor\".
Q: You also have a role in THE ALIEN AGENDA as a man who can look back into the past. What can you tell us about your involvement?
McCleery: Well, as I mentioned, even I am getting bored with me playing the loner, brooding, sullen characters. And then Kevin Lindenmuth presents me with the part of this guy who, for all this guy knows, is the last person on earth. So I say to myself as an actor--\"How do I play this guy? And not as a loner who is brooding and sullen!: Well, what I decided to do is play him as angry. Real mad, with a big frigging chip on his shoulder about his situation. I tried to keep some of the anger under his surface, but always ready to emerge. I\'m not sure how it will translate to film... but if you see me in THE ALIEN AGENDA and I don\'t look angry.. .I am! I\'m just trying not to overact. How\'s that sound? I just hope it comes off on tape.
Q: What other projects are you involved in?
McCleery: Good question. I am continuing to work on my sketch comedy show, DON\'T WATCH THIS SHOW! at a snail\'s pace of one 1/2 hour episode a year! As I write this I am just finishing the editing of episode #3. Other projects in the works include the aforementioned OF ANIMALS AND MEN.. production is complete and I will hopefully begin post-production before 1997. I am also planning on re-editing an old movie of mine from 1989 called CROOKS and releasing it to a wider audience. It\'s a comedy and quite a bit of fun, and it has a ton of heart. A number of other features are swimming around in my head, and I\'m wondering which one to bring to the front burner as a next project. None has won out clearly over any of the others as of yet. Getting back to DON\'T WATCH THIS SHOW! we will begin shooting skits for episode #4 (titled DON\'T WATCH THIS SHOW! VERSUS RELIGION, A.K.A. THE CHRISTMAS SPECIAL) within the month. Look for it by the end of the year. C8

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