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An Interview with Bill Oberst jr, Star of Coyote

by Mike Haberfelner

December 2014

Films starring Bill Oberst jr on (re)Search my Trash


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Your new movie Coyote - in a few words, what is the film about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?


The official logline for Trevor Juenger's Coyote is "An insomniac writer's sleep-deprived hallucinations distort reality as paranoia drives him to extreme violence." My personal logline is "Man goes apeshit and drags you along with him."


Considering he's at times batshit crazy, what did you even draw upon to bring your character to life, and can we find any of Bill Oberst jr in your character Bill?


He is crazy, but only in a greater degree than the rest of us. This guy can't sleep. He has bad dreams. His imagination is more real to him than the real world. He lives in his head. As do we all. There is much of my nightmare world in Coyote's Bill. He is me at 3am.


How did you get involved with the project in the first place - and how and why did you end up on the producing side of things, too? And what were the challenges regarding production?


Trevor Juenger [Trevor Juenger interview - click here] and his producing partner, Carrie Juenger (who is also his wonderful wife and a filmmaker in her own right) were kind enough to give me that producing credit for helping out with various things, although I did no more than anyone else. On a micro-budget everybody works hard. Everybody pitches in.


I got involved with Coyote after I wrote a fan letter to Trevor Juenger. I'd seen some of his early work and thought him a raw genius, and I said so. Nine months later he sent me Coyote, with a note saying "I can't see anyone other than you in the role." I opened the file, intending to scan it and read it after supper. Two hours later my supper was cold and my head was spinning.


What can you tell us about Coyote's director Trevor Juenger [Trevor Juenger interview - click here], and what was your collaboration like?


Some reviewers have compared him to Lynch and Cronenberg, but I think of Juenger as possessing the spirit of Georges Méliès; he considers independent cinema a canvas to go wild on, creating worlds that exist only in the mind. His work isn't derivative and it isn't bound by the conventions of linear storytelling. That's the freedom of cinema! I think he has a big future.

When the rough cut of Coyote was finished, Trevor wrote me "People are going to hate this movie... you're completely immersed in mental illness as you watch it." That's Trevor Juenger. And I'd suggest that the key to his success with this strange little film is that he didn't care if people liked Coyote as long as they experienced it. That's art. There is power in not pandering.


Since Coyote is told pretty much exclusively from your character's perspective, what kind of a strain was it to carry the film almost solely on your shoulders?


Oh it wasn't a strain - actors are all professional masochists - but it was a responsibility. I learned my lines, turned off the phone and showed up for work. I trusted Trevor with the rest.


What can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?


We shot in St. Louis during a heat wave of 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 Celsius) or higher most days. The heat affected everything, including our brains. I think the state of semi-madness we operated in was very good for this movie. If there's an alchemy to making art (as opposed to product) it has to do with adverse experiences. We are made for the desert, not the easy chair.


Coyote's website, Facebook, whatever else?


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The Coyote IMDb page has trailer, awards, reviews, and some very cool behind the scenes trivia. The Amazon page is and Facebook is Wild Eye Releasing will have Coyote on many cable systems' On Demand Video, as well as online streaming, after the official release date of Dec 16.


Anything else you are dying to mention and I've merely forgotten to ask?


Yes, I'd like to ask your readers to consider leaving a review on IMDb or Amazon if they watch. And please be warned, Coyote is not for children. There's a reason it is unrated.


Thanks for the interview!


Truly my pleasure, Mike.


© by Mike Haberfelner

Legal note: (re)Search my Trash cannot
and shall not be held responsible for
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Thanks for watching !!!



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



Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...


Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!


Bauliche Angelegenheiten
ein Roman von
Michael Haberfelner


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