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By Christopher Stipp

The Archives, Right Here

Check out my other column, This Week In Trailers, at SlashFilm.com and follow me on TWITTER under the name: Stipp


other-f-word-dvdDocumentaries like this just remind me how much older I’m getting every day.

It used to be that the world was young and our musical heroes would stay in some kind of stasis for ad infinitum but as time rolled on some of these rock gods became dads. Such is the premise for a documentary that explores how anarchists had to conform, to some degree, to rules and Barbie dolls.

Looking at the lives of guys like Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers, Fat Mike from NOFX and how they’ve had to capitulate, to some degree, to societal norms you realize that no one is immune to the pull of wanting more for those you bring into the world. While we see that none of them have lost the ethos of what made their music compelling, it’s bizarre to see a softer side to these tough men.

The film is really a portrait of an artist as a working father. The pulls of life at home and life of the road is wonderfully captured, albeit at the expense of the mothers who are noticeably absent from a story that really could have benefited from the perspective of the ladies who keep things going once these working dads go off to earn a paycheck. And that’s really the pull once you get past that these men reproduced. Some of them are in the twilight of their careers while their kids still need shoes, still need food, still need money coming through the door.

In some ways, the movie is an ode to fatherhood from unlikely dads. It’s worth any man’s time to see how life can twist in ways that are unexpected but that is completely natural in every way.

About the film:

This revealing and touching film asks what happens when a generation’s ultimate anti-authoritarians – punk rockers – become society’s ultimate authorities – dads. With a large chorus of punk rock’s leading men - Blink-182’s Mark Hoppus, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea, Rise Against’s Tim McIlrath - THE OTHER F WORD follows Jim Lindberg, a 20-year veteran of the skate punk band Pennywise, on his hysterical and moving journey from belting his band’s anthem “F–k Authority,” to embracing his ultimately authoritarian role in mid-life: fatherhood.

Other dads featured in the film include skater Tony Hawk, Art Alexakis (Everclear), Mark Mothersbaugh (Devo), Tony Adolescent (The Adolescents), Fat Mike (NOFX), Lars Frederiksen (Rancid), and many others.


Feature length audio commentary with Jim Lindberg (Pennywise / The Black Pacific), Art Alexakis (Everclear), director Andrea Blaugrund Nevins, and producer Cristan Reilly

Outtakes - including Mark Mothersbaugh (Devo) and Dr. Drew

Acoustic performance outtakes of “Father of Mine” (Art Alexakis) and “Swing Life Away” (Tim McIlrath)

Post-screening Q&A at SXSW Film Festival premiere

Music videos by The Black Pacific: “Living With Ghosts” and “The System”

Original theatrical trailer

Top Ten of 2011 By Ray Schillaci

I had every intention of getting my best ten list out before the Oscar nominations, but I really wanted to be diligent and give serious consideration for all the films out there. All too often, small independents and early releases (Jan, Feb & March) get ignored and so many people miss the chance of seeing some great work. The Academy is no different; early releases and small independents are nearly invisible to them unless major studios back the films with big buck campaigns. Oscar has beaten me to the punch and they have recognized greatness, but I cannot help but feel they also missed the mark on several brilliant films. Below is some of the proof.

the_tree_of_life_movie_poster_011. The Tree of Life – Possibly the best picture of the year. Only one other film comes close and that’s my number “2″ choice. The Tree of Life transcends the ages and takes us places very few have ever gone before with a power that is both earth-shattering with its emotions and as soft as the wing of an angel brushing upon a newborn’s brow. Some may be turned off by director Terrence Malick’s story technique, but those who are more open-minded are in for a rare treat. Malick’s latest opus and reflection on life, grief and where we stand in the universe is by far the greatest achievement in the artist’s repertoire (Badlands, Day’s of Heaven, The Thin Red Line).

2. The Descendents – This could be the film to beat. Although not as ambitious as Malick’s film, Alexander Payne addresses many of the reflections of life on a much more laid back level which makes The Descendents far more accessible to an average audience. Director Payne delivers a beautiful poignant story of one man at odds with what life has dealt him and his family, and although living in near paradise and financially well off he is not immune to the adversity that life can throw at us. George Clooney delivers one of the most down to earth performances we’ve seen in years. The rest of the cast is wonderfully natural as well. Here is a film so bittersweet that it has us laughing, crying and being thought provoking in all of its 115 minutes. It is effortless in its storytelling and could easily win best adapted screenplay.

3. Hugo – Martin Scorsese has delivered pure art in a children’s tale that continually fascinates and warms our heart. He has somehow encompassed his love for film and nurtured it with a fond tale of humanity and humility regarding an orphan boy surviving in a train station, its inhabitants and a toy peddler’s secret. It is both a simple and complex tale. Director Scorsese walks a wonderful high wire act with a story that touches the mind as well as the heart.

4. Midnight in Paris – Put aside that this is the best Woody Allen film in the last ten years. Very few can match the man’s genius for storytelling and superb dialogue in any given year. With “Midnight in Paris,” Allen has delivered one of the greatest comic/cosmic fantasies and yet he remains down-to-earth in the end while winning us over with his vision of Paris, France, past and present. Owen Wilson gives a wonderfully subtle performance as our surrogate Allen-type character who visits Paris with his fetching fiancée, Rachel McAdams only to accidentally time travel and fall in love with a past that is not quite up to nostalgic expectations in the long run. The setting alone is meticulously recreated and Woody Allen’s original screenplay towers over all others for Oscar. Add this one to the pantheon of Woody Allen classics; Annie Hall, Manhattan and Hannah and her Sisters.

5. The Artist – I struggle with this one. Michel Hazanavicius’ movie is a student of films dream. But it does owe a lot to other great films of the past and their soundtracks. It’s hard not to have sour grapes over the (so-called) ingenuity when two of our most famous humorists, Mel Brooks (Silent Movie, ‘76) and Steve Martin (Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid, ‘82) delivered similar works that were merely discarded at the time as a neat little gimmick. Now all of Hollywood seems to be enlightened and clamoring to award the French director on his “silent movie” fairy tale of a Hollywood silent film star’s fall with the introduction of talkies. Actually, this idea was also addressed in the American classic, “Singing in the Rain”. In defense to this ode of love to film and Hollywood, “The Artist” and its cast has a unique charm that can easily win one over. Also, the entire production has been expertly crafted. From the cinematography, art direction, editing, costumes and the original score that was intricately weaved around the love theme from Alfred Hitchcock’s “Vertigo,” the film has ended up with 10 Oscar nominations. It is an inventively entertaining movie, but not the best film of the year. The dialogue could have been stronger.

6. The Help – A film that nearly wears its heart on its sleeve, but carefully avoids any hint of being maudlin. Instead, it is thought-provoking, informative and quite humorous tale told through the eyes of maids in a Southern town during the civil rights movement. All the performances are spot on and judging from the recognition by the Hollywood Foreign Press and others some of the actors could very well go on to win an Oscar.

drive-poster17. Drive – Is Nicholas Winding Refn the Rodney Dangerfield of directors? Can this guy, his cast and crew get any respect from the Academy? After wowing so many with “Bronson” and being a film festival darling, Refn delivers the coolest movie of 2011 and breathes new life into a story so many have done before. This sleek vehicular thriller reminds us of the top-notch classics from Peter Yates’ “Bullitt” to William Friedkin’s “To Live and Die in L.A.” The movie could have easily been another “Transporter,” but in Refn’s skilled hands “Drive” shifts its way into a classic cerebral fable that takes our breath away with one of the best ensemble casts of the year. Albert Brooks was not overlooked for an Academy nomination, he was robbed.

8. Rare Exports – As mentioned; so many attempted to capture the old Spielberg magic, including the maestro himself and fell terribly flat this year. This Norwegian entry not only recaptures that magic, but gives it a dark spin worthy of a classic Brothers Grimm tale involving the discovery of the “real” Santa Clause and the dangers behind him. It is by far the most original film I have seen since Tim Burton’s, “Nightmare before Christmas” and for that alone it should be on any top ten list.

9. I Saw the Devil – Think of the first time you saw “Taxi Driver” or “Raging Bull” and the powerful blow that fell on you with not only the raw emotion but the sheer audacity and artistry of the way the story was weaved together – that is “I Saw the Devil” in a nutshell. The tale of authority going beyond the call of duty and exacting revenge on the most evil person imaginable is harsh, brutal and magnificent all at once.

10. Thespians – Sure, there are other documentaries that are crying out to be heard, but I feel a special need to throw this very worthy film into the ten best lists. Without thespians, there would be no theater and frankly, no film either. It is an important film for the future of performing arts and an immensely entertaining one as well. Warren Skeels has brought to light the real world of high school teens participating in the Thespian Society and how it touches and changes so many lives. This is required and enjoyable viewing for all ages.

Special Mention:

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 – Okay, it’s no Lord of the Rings, but the ending to this highly successful franchise was a fitting climax that thrilled most fans and proved to be a well crafted fantasy filled with heart and soul.

Cyrus – one of the best voices for independent films since Harold and Maude. It is audacious in its storytelling with honest acting provided by a very gifted cast. Once again, John C. Riley bares his soul as a social inept sad sack being pushed back into the dating scene via his ex-wife only to find the (al)most perfect mate on his first and hilarious outing. The one hitch is the woman in question, Marisa Tomei (cute as ever), has a very dysfunctional and near obsessive relationship with her son that should have moved out on his own years ago. The man(ipulating)/boy is played by Jonah Hill, the fuse to John C. Riley’s fireworks. It’s an unsettling, disturbing and downright hysterical.

Beyond “Suspicion”: Interview with Director, David Dilley By Ray Schillaci

While at the Phoenix Film Festival 2011 I touted director, David Dilley’s crime thriller that was delicately laced with a “good taut human drama” entitled, “Suspicion”. Dilley’s film has received a release date and audiences will finally have a chance to see on the big screen an intense look into the last days of a nearly rehabilitated second rate mobster struggling with his humanity, mortality and how his decisions affect all those around him. There will be inevitable comparisons to “Pulp Fiction” and “The Sopranos” with its multi-layered story and its insightful look into the underworld and those that dabble with them, but, Dilley’s film stands on its own as an intriguing slice of the criminal life.

I had a chance to sit down with Dilley and discuss his film, the two lead actors that deliver very realistic performances and supporting actor, Carlos Larkin who chills us with his rendition of a cold blooded underworld figure. Dilley is fascinating and has a deep love for storytelling and film as an art form. His view on the world of independent filmmaking and major studio films is very entertaining, but he does not pit one against the other. He is more saddened by the missed opportunities of the majors (like me).

We both agree it’s an industry far more driven by dollars than art. We also touched on SOPA and PIPA, the legislation the major studios are pushing for, veiled under a concern to save jobs in Hollywood. We both agreed this is only a clever ruse, as Dilley put it, “to maximize revenue”. If the majors and the government were interested in saving American film industry jobs, they could easily start by placing a halt on the mass exodus of runaway production. The majors have consistently sought tax incentives in Canada, Mexico and even Romania leaving thousands of American film industry workers jobless. So, how does SOPA or PIPA help them? It doesn’t. Before continuing on with the interesting dialogue, I realized I had to hone us in on the purpose of our meeting; discussing the release of “Suspicion”.

61603_131277616920655_130686256979791_169319_449662_nRay Schillaci: Congratulations on your release date. For the benefit of all those other independent filmmakers out there; it’s been nearly a year since the Phoenix Film Festival, what has happened since then to get where you are now?

DILLEY: After the Phoenix Film Festival we screened it at Big Bear (Big Bear Lake Int’l Film Festival). We took the Jury Prize there. We were acquired for distribution mid-December and then a couple of weeks after that Harkins called me and said they wanted to give me a theatrical release. That limited theatrical release is March 2nd through the 9th and then around April 17th the movie will be available through Netflix, cable, VOD, streaming and all that stuff.

RS: How many film festivals did you play?

DILLEY: Just two.

RS: Just the two, Phoenix and Big Bear?

DILLEY: Yea, no need to do anything else.

RS: Wow. Just there are people out there that do a lot of film festivals…

DILLEY: So, when I made “Suspicion,” I was like…a lot of like true independent movies, those movies are made because they’re very geared toward film festivals. They have that look, the feel, like it’s a road trip, that kind of movie. With “Suspicion” I wanted to be like, this is a real movie. Life does not end when the film festival circuit ends, it’s going to have a lot of mass appeal. So just as long as we get into a couple of film festivals I’ll be happy, but it was never my intention for it to live in the festival world. My intention was to make a good story driven movie and if you do that, I think a lot of people will like it and a lot of people will see it.

RS: Talking with you, I understand where you’re coming from but I think when this goes to print you could raise the ire of some indie filmmakers and film festivals. Do you want to clarify what you mean by “Suspicion” being “a real movie” and you’re thought on film festivals?

DILLEY: Definitely. I am not putting down independent movies or film festivals. When I made “Suspicion” I wanted it to be a mainstream movie. It’s an ultra-low budget, independent movie, sure, but I wanted it to stand out in comparison to other “indie movies”. There are many indie movies that lean towards the concept of two characters taking a road trip to Mexico or a group of twenty-somethings sit around and talk about their relationship problems (generalizing). So with “Suspicion” I didn’t want to do that. I didn’t want to show another indie movie that we’ve all grown accustomed to.

The hope was, if I looked at the mafia and presented it in an original way, and then a lot of people would appreciate it. Let me add, film festivals are wonderful, they really are. And, what’s even more wonderful than going to one is winning a jury prize for best feature film as we did at Big Bear.

RS: So, if I’m getting what you are saying right; when you mentioned that you wanted your film to be a “real movie,” what you had hoped for was that “Suspicion” would appeal to an arthouse audience as well as a mainstream one. Similar to Nicholas Winding Refn’s “Drive”?

DILLEY: That’s right.

RS: Not that I’m comparing the two films. They are very different in story and style. “Suspicion” is your first feature and it is a far cry in subject matter from your short film, “The Diner” back in 2009. What made you tackle such a story and did you have influences?

DILLEY: I’m a guy. I like mafia movies. So that was my desire to do that. I had some people ask me, “Why a mafia movie as your first film?” Because most directors will make a romantic comedy or that kind of stuff. I think at the end of the day, I just don’t like romantic comedies. I like story driven movies and I’ve always liked mafia movies. Why not make my first movie a mafia movie?

Influences; I’ve seen a lot of mafia films. I’ve seen a lot of films in general and my philosophy is whatever type of movie that you’re doing, show that movie in a unique angle. If you just approach a mafia film, like every other mafia film out there, you’re never going to give your audience anything new. And, you should do that with whatever you do. I know with a lot of mafia films what works and what’s been overused. I didn’t want to prescribe to that. I wanted to show a different story that’s in a genre that’s over a hundred years old and if I can’t do that, then I will not make the movie because I don’t want to waste anybody’s time.

RS: The chemistry between your two leads, Brad Blaisdell and Suzanne May is very natural. How long did it take to find those two and realize they were the actors for those important roles?

DILLEY: First with Suzanne; I worked on a film with her called “Gentleman Broncos”. I worked on that film with her in 2008 and she and I are friends. She was actually in the short I did, “The Diner”. We had an open casting call and I told her about the film. I told her she should come out an audition for it. She did and she killed it and that’s where I picked up Suzanne for the Alicia role. Her audition was spot on. Brad we got through an open casting call and he did a really, really excellent job. But I was kind of concerned because I thought, okay I’ve seen Brad and I’ve seen Suzanne, but I haven’t seen them together yet. Then we had a couple of read throughs and I thought it was the right choice to make for both of them and it was just good stuff.

RS: I find it interesting that you went for very natural looking leads. You didn’t type cast. Brad, at first glance, does not look like the typical mafia guy we’re use to and Suzanne’s looks are played down. If this was studio casted you might have had a very Italian looking guy and possibly Megan Fox in tight shorts and a loose top. Did you intentionally go against type?

DILLEY: Right. My thing is when it comes to movies, I think the best kind of movies, for me personally, I don’t know what other people go for but you never know that. For me it’s like, when I watch a movie I’d rather, 9 times out 10, watch the movie and be like - these essentially are real people versus actors who are playing just a character. I think movies are a lot more powerful that way. When you see a movie and you’re like “wow,” that could be a real person that lives down the street versus some idiosyncrasy that no one would have. I think that kind of stuff is really overplayed. It has to be natural.

RS: So to reiterate, you casted against type.

carloslarkinDILLEY: Yea. I know why it’s done and all that stuff and for a lot of films it works, you know quite effectively. But I’d rather watch a movie that had real people than characters and that’s “Suspicion”.

RS: That reminds me; there were two films at the festival last year, one of them being yours, that had a little bit of a flavor of John Cassavetes. Did you ever see Cassavetes’ “Killing of a Chinese Bookie”?


RS: The reason I ask is because you have that bit of naturalness, almost as if some scenes were improvised (I’m referring to this in a good way). Were you trying to go for something like that?

DILLEY: After we cast everyone in the film, I sat down with all my actors and said, this is the story, this is my script, this is how I see things, but that being said you (the cast) are “the actors”. You’re bringing these characters to life. So, you’re free to explore and do anything you want to do to make these characters more real. I was like, if something doesn’t work, we’ll adjust then. But until we get to that point just have fun with it.

And, so like when you’re watching the film and you’ll see like they are not just sitting down and talking, especially Brad. Sometimes he is fidgeting and that kind of stuff and it just goes back to what I was saying that he just feels like more of a real person rather than a character. You would do that if you were talking with somebody. You would have some sort of movement. Yea, sometimes things were improvised and I would look at it and say, yea that’ll work.

RS: Like the little dance?

DILLEY: Yea. Brad has been on Broadway and off-Broadway and he can dance. In that scene, you know they are getting high and he’s an old hippie at heart and so he’s just dancing around in his apartment. Brad and I spoke about that dance for all of two seconds. He’s like, “I don’t think it’s choreographed.” And, I agreed. I told him, “You’re high and you’re 60, 61 and you have a 23 year-old girl, very attractive, very smart woman in your house, But at the same time there is nothing going on between the two of you. Even though you are a 61 year-old man, you might be like, yea I really wish something would happen, but there’s no way it ever would. So obviously you’re delighted to be around this person and you guys are high and you just reflect all that.

I think the only direction I gave him in that scene was like; you’re kinda like the dancing elephant in the room. You’re this big mafia guy and you want to have fun, but when you’re dancing, you’re kind of making a fool of yourself. It’s fun though.

RS: It’s a very nice, light moment and it’s funny because after I viewed the film again I realized I neglected to mention James Khoury’s haunting score. Please extend my apologies to him. His music really sets the tone from beginning to end. Did you have an idea right away, when you were doing the film, what kind of score would drive this film?

DILLEY: No, I mean the way I operate is I like giving people as little as direction as possible. I think that there’s a tendency in Hollywood that people, the directors especially, a lot of them micro-manage and so I think when you do that, like you’re not…if you’re hiring this person as your cinematographer, you’re hiring this person because you know that this person is really good at what they do, one. And two; they are a lot better at what they do than you can be at their job.

If you’re hiring these people to do whatever roles whether it is your composer, your cinematographer or your actors, you should give those people as much freedom as possible. Obviously, talk to them about what the movie is, the tone and all that stuff, but in terms of like being intrusive you shouldn’t do that.So, I sat down with James and told him this is obviously a mafia film, it’s dark and he had read the script. I asked him to give me some things that I can work with. Give me all the music on stems that way we can adjust and he agreed. There was some stuff we had to take out because it was a little bit too much, but that’s just how it works.

RS: It wasn’t grandiose and there was nothing that screamed out Italian about it. It was a very nice score. The first time I saw your film, you know what really struck me was a stand-out performance and I probably harp on it too much…

DILLEY: That’s good.

RS: That was Carlos Larkin. Tell me; was his audition a slam dunk? Where did you find him? As I’ve mentioned before, the guy resembles a young Peter Fonda and sounds like a cross between Nick Nolte and Kris Kristofferson. But when I met him, he was nothing of the sort.

headshot-suzanne-may-193x300DILLEY: Yeah, I know. So, my really good friend, Alex McCullough, helped me produce the film and Alex knew Carlos. They had worked on a couple of projects before and he was like, would you mind if this person auditioned? I said, no problem, absolutely. He came in for the open casting call and he read it and I looked at the tapes and I wasn’t sold. I talked to Alex and he was like, what do you mean? And, I told him I didn’t know. It seemed like he played it too nice and I told him to record himself again and let me see it. The second tape he sent in, he essentially invented that voice, that’s in the movie which is really cool. I was like, YEA. He says in the audition tape that he’s thinking like a Kris Kristofferson kind of thing. I’m watching this tape and it works!

RS: That was funny, because when I met him and I told Carlos exactly how I felt that he kind of channeled a combination of Kris Kristofferson and Nick Nolte, he was surprised that I was the first person to catch that.

DILLEY: It was just funny; he does a lot of voice work and that kind of stuff. He’s a number of characters on the World of Warcraft. I think he’s working on something else, but he really can’t talk about it because he signed an NDA agreement that’s two or three hundred pages, probably. He did a really good job. It was like what I said before; you should be as natural as possible. For me, at least, my favorite movies are when you watch a movie and say, this is a real person versus a character. I think really good actors can do that. That’s what makes movies so powerful for me. It’s like you’re telling a story, but you’re telling it with real people doing it. Carlos did an amazing job with that.

RS: As I mentioned before, you walked this tightrope with human drama and crime thriller. How hard was that? Did you ever find yourself shifting more towards one or the other?

DILLEY: No, because I wrote the script. I knew what the story was going to be, but I didn’t just want it to be a mafia film. You have to give your audience a new story. If you’re doing a mafia movie and mafia movies are as old as cinema, they’ve been around for over a century, so every type of mafia film has already been done. So if you don’t do it from a unique angle you are going to lose your audience. So it was not that difficult because I knew what kind of story I wanted to do going into it.

RS: Why the Arizona location when so many films of this kind take place in New York, New Jersey and Chicago? Was it the sense of relocation for criminals, since they have been known to be sent this way?

DILLEY: I’m from Arizona. My family moved out here when I was 9 and I consider myself a native. Phoenix is the 5th or 6th largest city in the United States. So, there is going to be an element of organized crime here. There always has been, there always will be. I t would have been really cool to film in New York. I’m not going to lie. It would have been really cool to film in Chicago. But it’s like; it goes back to telling an original story. Not all mafia movies have to be in Chicago or have to be in New York. There’s organized crime everywhere and there is also evidence of that in Phoenix. In the late 70s, early 80s journalists, honestly would turn their car on and like “Casino,” their car would explode. These people had put bombs under their cars. There is history here with that.

RS: Did you have any talks with any persons of interest…you know where I’m going with this?

DILLEY: (laughs) Yea. So funny thing is I had done a good amount of research and when we screened at Big Bear there was these people that were obviously retired. They had been retired for a number of years and one of the guys had seen the film introduced me to his friend and his friend use to be “involved,” in that line of work and he was like, “Haven’t seen it yet. I hope you didn’t mess it up” This is after we won the Jury Prize. The winners were going to screen their movies again. After he had seen it he was like, yea, I know a lot of people like that, and a lot of people like Daryl. That was just coincidental and really cool.

RS: So just with research alone you had your finger on that pulse.

DILLEY: Yes. Like I said before, mafia movies have been around for well over a century and you’ve watched a lot of them and you’re like if I’m going to do this I’m going to approach it from a unique angle and at the same time I have to do real research. Like what would happen. One of the things I found was a lot of people say you’re in the mafia until death. That’s not true. The mafia is and always has been an economic enterprise. If you’re involved in that line of work and you can’t do it anymore for whatever reason there are a number of people that will gladly take over that work load for you because it’s an economic endeavor. There wasn’t anything with Daryl where it was like; oh I left the family now I’m going to get killed. What happens in the movie is because of his relationship to this mafia boss but it never directly deals with how you dare leave the family.

bradblaisdellS: Many filmmakers have a tendency to get pigeonholed in a genre, but I think that would be hard to do with you since you’ve shown that you can handle drama as well as the down-and-dirty of a thriller. What do you see on the horizon? Do you have a desire to branch out in other genres?

DILLEY: Yes. I’m hopefully directing another movie in September or October. It’s a legal political type thriller. I have some meetings in the next two months. We’ll see if this movie materializes or not. But I have a good feeling it will. I always want to tell good story driven movies regardless whatever genre that is. I’m going to hopefully be able to do that.

RS: How does a filmmaker like you gain funding for such a project like “Suspicion” with its very independent film feel?

DILLEY: Obviously it’s not studio financed. You can’t go to a bank. It’s just like anything else, any sort of business now. A bank will not give you a loan unless you have some very serious collateral. So you end up talking to people you know that might want to do this. They might agree to finance it or a part of it and then you end up asking them if they know anybody else. That’s how independent movies get made nowadays and I think that’s how it should be.

RS: You live here in Arizona. How does that work for you with the buzz of the Industry primarily in L.A.?

DILLEY: I lived in Los Angeles for three years. When I was in Los Angeles I really wasn’t living there because I was working every place else. For the three years I worked, I was probably only living there for maybe five months. You don’t really have to be in L.A. as long as you have a good network and you always stay busy. If you do need to go to L.A. it’s a one hour flight (from Phoenix) or it’s about 5 to 6 hours by car. I go out to L.A. quite a bit for meetings and that kind of stuff. I think Phoenix is very uniquely positioned that you’re obviously outside of L.A. but you’re close enough you can come back for meetings and such. I don’t know. I think it’s very easy to get wrapped up in the whole scene in Los Angeles and a lot of people that move out there might have the best intentions in the world but very soon they get wrapped up in the lifestyle, the nightlife and everything else and then they’re not able to make movies. I like living in Phoenix because it’s removed from L.A. and if I do need to go out there, I can very easily.

RS: Do you have an agent?

DILLEY: No, not yet.

RS: Have you been contacted?

DILLEY: Yes, by UTA and CAA. And, one of my best friends, he actually works at Imagine Entertainment and if this next movie materializes there’s a good chance we will be able to bring that to Imagine. So, we’ll see. But again, that is down the road.

RS: Do you think Brad or Suzanne may have a part in that?

DILLEY: Yea, well my thing is like, obviously each movie has to be unique. So you couldn’t have this character play a lead in your other movie, but there is still room to bring these people over if there is a role for them.

RS: Is it fair to say that you’re pretty loyal?

DILLEY: Yea, I have my inner circle. That’s the great thing about film or any other sort of business venture. You’re always going to meet new people and you’re always going to find people who are hard working, very talented and you’ll always add to that group of people.

RS: You tend to see that not so much in big films, but with famous directors such as Quentin Tarantino and his use of Michael Madsen, Martin Scorsese using Robert DeNiro and Joe Pesci, all the way down to Sam Peckinpaw and his use of Warren Oates. So you’re like that.

DILLEY: It all depends on the project. If you’re doing a comedy, Brad might not be the best for that role. But if you can, you should.

RS: But you would definitely consider your editor, your cinematographer…

DILLEY: Oh absolutely.

RS: And, I have to tell you it’s beautifully done. I was watching it again. The editing, all the different shots very carefully thought out, a fine independent film.

DILLEY: Thank you. It was fun making it.

RS: I just want to make sure I have this right. The pending dates for the release you have March 2nd through the 9th at the Harkins Valley Art Theater on Mill Ave in Tempe.

DILLEY: Yes and Harkins about a year ago finished upgrading all their technology so all of their projectors are digital now. So we’re actually screening “Suspicion” on Blu-ray. There is a difference on the Blu-ray since we shot with the RED camera and we had prime lenses. The maximum resolution on a RED Camera is a 4K camera, so 4000×1080 and that’s maximum resolution which is fine for a forty foot screen.

RS: Could the run get extended?

DILLEY: It could. Harkins told me that if it does well for that week, they’ll give me another week but the definition of how well it does – you never know. Mid-April it will be available on Netflix, VOD, cable and we might get picked up in Los Angeles and New York for another theatrical release which would be kinda cool. You could say my movie was in the theater in these three states. Yea, that would be cool

RS: I will recommend to people that they see it in the theater. Somehow the story and the tension it provides always appears better on the big screen. Thank you very much for this interview.

DILLEY: You’re welcome and thank you.


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