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An Interview with Anthony Vander, Director of Amateur

by Mike Haberfelner

August 2017

Anthony Vander on (re)Search my Trash


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Your upcoming movie Amateur - in a few words, what is it about?


Amateur follows the week in a life of four boxers, in particular two protagonists whose relationship moves beyond the ropes. I’d describe it best as Creed meets Love and Basketball with a bit of extras. It's a coming of age tale of competition and young love.


With Amateur being set in the world of boxing - is that a sport at all dear to you?


I took up boxing six years ago. I was cast in play I did as a boxer so I had months of training and learning about the sport. I thought I was fit before I had my first boxing lesson but I realised that wasn’t the case. The sprints, the cardio, the pad and heavy bag work, not forgetting the sparring. I became slightly obsessed with the sport. I chose to take it a step further and fight white collar in front of five hundred people which was an experience.


Other sources of inspiration when writing Amateur?


There are a number of boxing films that were sources of inspiration such as Creed, Rocky and Girlfight to name a few. Personally the main inspiration for this film whilst writing was my experiences in boxing gyms and also documentaries about the sport. Counterpunch, a documentary I recently saw on Netflix was very insightful as it covered both the the amateurs and the pro ranks. Also Knockout Scoucers and a bunch of other documentaries and YouTube content.


So how are you planning to go about the boxing action in your film?


We are not going to overdramatise any of the action that takes place within the boxing ring. I want to try make the action as real as possible. There will definitely be a lot of movement in the film so you can expect a solid use of steady cam.


Do talk about the movie's intended overall look and feel!


In terms of the look of the film I really want the viewers to get an experience of the sacrifice and dedication these boxers put in the gym. The blood, sweat and tears they face on a day-to-day basis.

In terms of the feel of the movie I think the viewers will be taken on an energetic emotional rollercoaster. In some ways our film is an advert of how many lives boxing can save and also the gender inequality within sport. We won't hammer home anything though as I want the film to speak for itself.


Anything you can tell us about Amateur's projected cast yet?


We have such a multi-talented cast attached to this film which includes Edwin De La Renta (who has just finished playing supporting lead alongside Joel Kinahan, Clive Owen and Rosamund Pike in Three Seconds), Jordan Pitt (Montana, Stormhouse), Melanie Gayle (90 Minutes, Three Acts), Andre Fyffe (Macbeth), Gary Swan (Sweetboy) and Stephanie Siadatan (Casualty, The Hike). Our cast are training as we speak and are doing the necessary research to make sure their characters are fully rounded.


As far as I know, Amateur is still in its fundraising stages - so do talk about your campaign for a bit!


We decided to choose crowdfunding for our film as we believe it is the best way to communicate and build an audience for our film. Also the reality is we can only make this film the way we want it through a successful crowdfunding campaign. We have some amazing perks for our film from meeting the cast and crew on set to having a one-to-one boxing session. We’ll ensure our backers will be updated first on all news and media about our feature film.


Once the funds are raised, what's the schedule?


Our crowdfunding campaign ends in the middle of October. We aim to shoot the film in early November so it's a pretty quick turnaround, but we’ve already been working hard, rehearsing and also having production meetings. It’ll be around two week shoot so the actors will physically challenged and pushed to the limit, but our cast and crew are hundred percent dedicated and will do an incredible job.


Any idea when and where Amateur will be released onto the general public yet, however tentatively?


We are looking at a summer 2018 release. We plan to screen the film on the international festival circuit and create momentum and buzz around the film before selecting the right distributors to assist in our VOD, home video and theatrical release. My goal for Amateur is to get our film on Netflix or Amazon Prime.


Any future projects beyond Amateur?


Feeling lucky ?
Want to
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?

The links below
will take you
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Find Anthony Vander
at the amazons ...


Great Britain (a.k.a. the United Kingdom)

Germany (East AND West)

Looking for imports ?
Find Anthony Vander here ...

Your shop for all things Thai

Yes, I have a feature film Scales in post production, which I acted and produced. The film is looking great in the edit and will be do the festival circuit in early 2018. I’ll also be shooting a second season of webseries Casting Directors in late 2017. Joe Harvey (who wrote my debut film Sweetboy) has written an incredible second season.  


Your/your movie's website, Facebook, IndieGoGo, whatever else?


Crowdfunding page:





Anything else you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?


Just a huge thank you to you Michael for your continued support and this interview. It is hugely appreciated.

Also to people reading this interview please support our film. We have so many great perks on offer and this film is going to be something special. Huge thanks.


Thanks for the interview!


© by Mike Haberfelner

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and shall not be held responsible for
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Thanks for watching !!!



Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD