Your new movie Dark
Specter - in a few words, what is it about?
tells the story of a great and powerful supervillain who,
while in the midsts of springing a trap for one of his greatest
adversaries, ends up having to confront his greatest nemesis, his own
obviously, Dark Specter
was influenced by superhero comics - a genre at all dear to you, and do
you consider yourself a comicbook geek?
I have a great
affection for the superhero genre, but I couldn’t really call myself a
comicbook geek anymore, it has been a long time since I have collected and
I’m not current on any of the storylines. I will still pick up a
graphic novel when it either strikes my fancy or is something I used to be
really into, for example I recently picked up all three of the current
deluxe hardcover Sandman collection… Ok, maybe I still am a comic geek.
These days, I am more into the Marvel movies and the
Other sources of
inspiration for Dark
Aside from the obvious comic book
connection with Dark Specter, a large inspiration was the Woody Allen and
Albert Brooks style of humor. I was also inspired by many a
conversation I had with me dear old mum.
How would you describe the brand of
humour of Dark Specter?
would say that it is an absurdist take with a twist of standard family
sitcom humor thrown in with just a twist of Yiddish for spice.
also play the title role in your movie - so have you at all written the
character with yourself in mind, and how much of Bruce Nachsin can we find
in Dark Specter?
Funny enough, quite a bit. To start,
the mother character is an exaggeration of my own mother who could walk
into a room and just by her presence take complete control of any given
situation. In my youth, she had a very dominating personality and
the gravity of such would warp the local reality around her to fit
whatever she wanted. It wasn’t done in an overbearing manner, it
was just her nature and people loved her even as it was happening.
The Dark Specter is a mama’s boy and that is me as well. Another
aspect of the Dark Specter that I feel reflects my actual life is how
there are times I have felt my abilities outstrip my current
opportunities. Like most people trying to make it in a field that
requires a high quotient of good fortune, I spend a lot of time trying to
just get by. And that getting by can also get in the way. The Dark
Specter could rule the world, but he also has to get his mother home by
8:30 and that holds him back a little, I have a large client base who
might be having a problem that I have to take care of, so my projects get
pushed back sometimes. It can be frustrating but that is part of the
life of an actor/producer.
What can you tell us about the rest of
your cast, and why exactly these people?
The mother was written specifically for
the woman who plays her. Dark Specter started life as part of a
sketch comedy revue I was part of. When I saw just how funny it was
onstage, I knew I wanted to film it and I desperately wanted Judy Nazametz
to reprise her role as the mother. I mean, she is an amazingly
talented actress who is comedic gold regardless to what she does.
She is also an amazing singer. I can’t love on her enough, she is
someone who should be a regular on a sitcom right now and it is beyond me
why this is not the case.
As far as the Spark goes, I held a casting
to find him. I saw about 40 people of varying degrees of talent,
some of them pretty good too. However Evan Judson won me over by having the
best understanding of the material not to mention one of the best reads.
In fact, there was a particular line that most of the people who
auditioned didn’t get the intention behind, Evan was the only one who
interpreted what I was trying to do with it. The line was: “Wait,
your name is Bertrand… as in Bertrand the Dark Specter?” He saw
that it was meant as an insult and he did that long laugh thing, which was
his creative choice. That moment, I knew he was the guy. He
also had a great friendly air about him that told me he wouldn’t be a
problem on set. That is very important when you are spending your own
Do talk about
the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
start I was fortunate to have a client who had a large warehouse that
could look like the kind of place a villain might break into and they were
willing to let me us it after hours for the shoot so that was a
great start. I try my best of have friendly and professional
atmosphere on my sets so I do my best to avoid working with people who
might be a detriment to that. I had previously worked with at least
6 of my crew before, most of them from back in the Under the Doghouse
days. I had a great producing partner who worked her ass off to make
sure things were running smoothly, even when they were not. We had a
few issues out of the gate with the costumes that required a bit of
patching up before we started. My poor producing partner Roe had to
keep gluing the Spark back together, including reattaching his cod piece
mid shoot, something that was both amazingly funny and embarrassing.
Aside from the costume stuff, the shoot ran smoothly. We had a good idea of
what we wanted so we kept to a good schedule once we got started. Everyone
was having a good time and it was easygoing. We shot a 14 hour day
on an overnight, which is rough but we got everything we needed. I
feed my people well and that makes them happy so they were willing to go the
extra mile for me. That’s why I feel good food and crafts is one
of the most important thing you can do when you are trying to shoot things
on a low budget. If you have great food and a friendly attitude,
people will work their asses off for you, but be skimpy and cheap, no
matter what the reason for that is and your crew will just want to leave
as fast as they can. Doesn’t mean they won’t be professional but they
won’t care and it can really affect the end result.
you can tell us about critical and audience reception so far?
far, everyone I’ve shown it to loves it. They find it smart, funny
and entertaining. I think most people don’t expect an
independently funded short like this to have the level of visual effect
and sound design that Dark
has. No one has given me any real
criticism on it. I personally think it is the best thing I have done
and it sets a very high bar for me to shoot for with my future projects.
we ever see more of Dark Specter ... and other future projects you'd like
Funny you should ask. When I wrote Dark
Specter, I was just writing a sketch however there are a lot of questions
that the short asks that I have been thinking very deeply about. I
am planning on writing and producing additional Dark Specter episodes that
will both tell an extended story and act as a series pitch. On top
of that, I have shot another short that is currently making its way
through the post production process, I don’t have an ETA on that one yet
but I’m hoping to have it done within the next few months. Beyond
that, I have a few other irons in the fire. I recently founded an
improv/sketch group called Bizarre Love Triangle that can be seen
performing around Los Angeles. We have plans that will include a
podcast, a YouTube channel and quite possibly our own web comic but these
are all things that will materialize in the upcoming year.
Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever
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Anything else you're dying to mention and I have
merely forgotten to ask?
Thank you for interviewing me.
To your readers, please come visit my channel, enjoy my comedy and
subscribe to see what I will be producing in the future.
Thanks for the interview!