Your new movie The Fare -
in a few words, what is it about?
The Fare is a sci-fi/fantasy/mystery story and an homage to
sources of inspiration when writing The
is my homage to
Zone, one of my favorite TV shows of all
time. So that was definitely the heaviest influence. Other influences
include The X-Files,
Star Trek, and
Now what were the challenges of bringing The
Fare to the screen from a producer's point of view, and how
hands-on or hands-off have you been as a producer, especially since you're
also the writer and star of the movie?
had a limited budget and an extremely tight shooting schedule on this
film. The biggest challenge was to make sure we make our days and film
everything we needed. During pre and post production, I was a full time
producer. During production, on-set producer duties were taken over by
producer Kristin Starns and co-producer David Midell, so I could focus on
What can you tell
us about The Fare's
director D.C. Hamilton, and what was your collaboration like, in pre- and
post-production as well as on set? And since this is not the first time
you're working together, what can you tell us about your previous
collaborations, and how did you two first meet even?
and I met through mutual filmmaker colleagues about a decade ago. We have
since collaborated on 2 feature films and several shorts. We work well
together because we have similar tastes and sensibilities. DC's talents as
a director lie in his distinct and stunning visual style - as a writer, I
cannot ask for a more dedicated and talented director to bring my scripts
also play the lead in The Fare
- so what can you tell us about your character, what did you draw upon to
bring her to life, and have you written her with yourself in mind from the
is a woman who is equal parts melancholy and mysterious, and exuberant and
enthusiastic. She is a charming presence and she is immensely taken by her
handsome driver Harris. Their budding relationship is the heart of this
had always written the character for myself to play. I was an actor long
before I became a writer, so when I conceive a story with a role in it
appropriate for me, I write with the intention of performing the role.
What can you tell us about the rest of your
cast, and as writer-producer, how much of a say did you have or claim in
casting The Fare?
The Fare is a 2-hander performance wise. So during the production, my co-star
and I basically just played off each other's energy. The takes were long,
we only had 1-2 takes per setup, it was almost like performing scenes from
a play. It was great fun.
was no real casting process, I wrote Penny for myself, and Gino Anthony
Pesi was our only choice for Harris as he embodies that role exactly the
way I pictured it.
few words about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
only had 6 days to shoot the film, so the on-set atmosphere was one of
fast-paced excitement. We knew we were constantly against the clock, so
everyone gave 100% in order to make our days.
you can tell us about audience and critical reception of The
has played at 8 film festivals so far, both domestically and
internationally, and it's been a very humbling and exciting experience for
us. The audience response has been enthusiastic and warm and the critical
reception has been across-the-board positive. The reception of The Fare
has exceeded every expectation of mine and I am so grateful for that and
so proud of the work our amazing cast and crew has done.
Any future projects you'd like to share?
currently have several scripts I would love to develop, but my favorites
are a horror-comedy in the vain of Shaun of the
Dead, and a domestic
horror/thriller. I think audiences will have a great time at both films!
Hopefully The Fare
will connect with audiences and they will want to see
more from me, and that will open the door to more projects in the future.
got you into the filmworld in the first place, and did you receive any
formal training on the subject?
was a child actor from the age of 11. I appeared in several television
shows in my native country of China. From there, I studied at and
graduated from the UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television.
What can you tell us
about your filmwork prior to The
film school, I began my writing career, first writing for standup
comedians, then moving on to writing for an online sketch comedy show,
before finally becoming a feature screenwriter about 10 years ago. The Fare
is my second produced feature script. My first was 2016's The
Midnight Man. I have also done various rewrite work for other writers'
Going through your filmography, one can't
help but notice on most of your films you've served as actress as well as
writer and producer - why is that, and which aspect(s) of the filmmaking
process do you prefer, which could you do without?
been an actor for most of my life, it's the job I am most familiar with.
However, most actors don't get to create the characters they play. Once I
became interested in writing, I realized what a true thrill it is to
create a character from the ground up, to have ownership from inception to
completion. It's the part of the job I enjoy most. But I love everything
about filmmaking and there isn't a single part, pre production,
production, or post production, that I would do without. Some people say
the hardest part is the financing and fund raising process, and that's
what they wish they could forgo. But I believe the right to make a film is
earned, and if one cannot convince a financier that one's film is worth
investing in, then perhaps that film shouldn't be made... So enjoy the
process, all of it. Truly, it's a privilege just to be here.
filmmakers, actresses, whoever else who inspire you?
are so so many, but off the top of my head, I would say the most
influential inspirations of mine include: Aaron Sorkin, Joss Whedon, Shane
Black, Gene Roddenberry, Rod Sterling, James Cameron, James Gunn, Denis
Villeneuve, David Sandberg, Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, Tina Fey, Sarah
Silverman, and Nicole Kidman.
The Matrix, The Fugitive, Star Trek 2, Star Trek First
Contact, Galaxy Quest, Shaun of the
Dead, and the MCU. (I'm a populist when it comes to
... and of course, films you really
is not a word I would use on a narrative film. There are many things in
real life more deserving of that word and that feeling. When it comes to
movies, some are for me, some are very much not for me, but at the end of
the day, it's always some filmmaker's hard work, and it'll be for someone.
Personal taste-wise, I don't care for films that feel overly
self-indulgent on the filmmaker's part and don't take the audience's
experience into consideration.
Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
look for the handle @brinnakelly on Twitter and Instagram and Brinna Kelly
on Facebook if you want to find me.
Fare's social media handles are:
Anything else you're dying to mention and I have
merely forgotten to ask?
that I am very grateful to you for taking the time to talk to me and watch
the film. The Fare was a true passion project from start to finish and our only hope is
that it'll find the audience who will enjoy it!
Thanks for the interview!