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An Interview with Johnny J. Sullivan, Director of Moose on the Loose

by Mike Haberfelner

June 2012

Quick Links

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Your new film Moose on the Loose - in a few words, what is it about?


Johnny, a filmmaker and actor, has recently returned to Los Angeles from an adventure up in Canada. His friends are eagerly awaiting his return and are excited to learn about the details of the journey. A journey that has been wildly adventurous, and informative, while exploring moose on the loose in the most North easterly point of North America. Moose on the Loose captures the story of a majestic beast as a force to be reckoned with, while comedic overtures of one man’s journey in life are intermittently dispersed throughout the story.


In Moose on the Loose, you combine documentary and comedy - to ask quite bluntly, why, and how do these two genres gel?


Why not? Rather than a one tone documentary, Moose on the Loose is a documentary comprised of comedic and dramatic elements within the story. It was an approach used to stimulate interest and communicate awareness by creating a uniqueness about the delivery within the movie and subject matter – MOOSE ON THE LOOSE. Moose on the Loose is designed to entertain, engage, inform and enlighten the audience.


Shooting a documentary vs directing a comedy - which do you actually prefer, and why?


Researching the issues and shooting the actual interviewees were most informative and fun. However, directing a project such as Moose on the Loose with actors for scenes (comedic and dramatic) within the documentary project was hard work, stimulating, challenging and fun! Shooting and directing is challenging, rewarding and fun at the least. I have learned and had fun by directing various projects.


What were your initial inspirations when writing Moose on the Loose, and what got the project off the ground?


My father inspired me to write Moose on the Loose. Courage, creativity, focus and determination ignited the project.


Why a moose? Is that an animal you have a particular connection to?


Why not? It’s an animal that has been part of my life to one degree on another since I was a young boy.


Would you like about the trials and tribulations of filming the documentary parts of your movie for a bit?


There is a cast of 13 comprised of actors playing roles and interviewees playing themselves. A lot of work is involved from the beginning to the end.


The adventures from inception to completion through the phases from development, pre-production, production to post production were magnificent, phenomenal and a cohesive effort. From the origins of an idea, to the transformation of the idea into words, to finalizing the script, along with casting the talent, directing, producing and editing the project to a final deliverable were most stimulating and a growing experience. One that was cathartic and invigorating at the least.


The experience of my first feature, Moose on the Loose, solidified my passion for the entertainment industry. It is a beautiful foundation to which I can leverage, grow and learn from and bring added value to other projects. The journey to express feelings and tell a story to an audience is a phenomenal and paramount one. The project was a learning experience and an incredible journey, one that I will never forget!


In contrast, what was it like to film the comedy parts, and what can you tell us about the on-set atmosphere?


It was hard work, stimulating, challenging and fun at the least! The on-set atmosphere was that of hard hardworking professional actors. Call time was really early for the crew and cast, and there was some OT. It was a lot of hard work! For the United States Unit, we shot the scene at two locations in Hollywood. A small scene was shot in Colorado. For the Canadian Unit, some scenes were shot at several locations in Canada and the interviews were conducted in Canada.


You also play the lead in Moose on the Loose - what can you tell us about your character Johnny, how did you approach him, acting-wise, and to what extent did you base him on yourself?


I leveraged some real word life experiences and fictionalized some of the truth to bring my character it’s own identity.


A few words about the rest of your cast and crew?


It was a pleasure to work with the cast. They were very hard working and professional. I had the final decision in hiring all actors and crew.


The $64-question of course: When and where will Moose on the Loose be released onto the general public?


The Moose on the Loose-trailer is currently available at the following link:

The movie is currently being submitted to festivals. I plan to have the movie available to the public by or before end of Q4 2012.


You are currently also involved in post production of your movie The Rock, right? What can you tell us about that one yet?


At this point, the project The Rock started back in production at Miami Beach back in April / May 2012 and will continue in Los Angeles for periods in June / July of 2012.

It is a new media project and is currently back in production (webisodes 1-4 have been produced in 2010 and 2011, webisodes 5-11 are targeted for completion in 2012).

The Rock (webisode 1) storyline:

A mid-30s man is in search of his soul mate and living the Hollywood dream. While trying to find love, he encounters a beautiful young lady at a coffee shop and brings new meaning to coffee grinds. He encounters a comedy of errors while trying to find love.

The actors in this project (webisode one) are noted below. Other actors will be uploaded onto IMDb, and we will be casting additional actors in Los Angeles in early / mid June 2012.

Johnny J. Sullivan and

Janna VanHeertum

More updates to the project The Rock, cast and scope of the storyline, will be provided at a later date and time in 2012.

I would be happy to provide more information on the project The Rock at a later date.


Any other films of yours you'd like to talk about, any future projects?


A teaser for you and your audience - I am currently writing a horror movie too. I am very excited about it! I started writing it last summer back in Canada and it is still in development.

I have written several other scripts and may pull a few out of my back pocket in the near future for production purposes.


How would you describe your approach to filmmaking, and did you receive any formal education on the subject?


My approach is simple: First and foremost, everyone is a professional and deserves to be paid. I focus, plan, listen, communicate, collaborate and direct to the best of my ability.


I put forth an effort to create opportunities by leveraging the power of courage, determination, friendships, relationships, opportunities, flexibility, negotiation, business management skills, communication skills, patience and listening skills along with leveraging my expertise and life experiences from working in other industries and living in several countries. In addition, lots of hard work, long hours and a desire and passion for the project. I have formal training via three degrees and a certificate of training from the below. (B.A. Bachelor of Arts - Economics, B.Comm. (Co-op). Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing) and MBA - Master of Business Administration and completed film training at the Hollywood Film Institute.)


You also have an extensive background as a stage actor. What can you tell us about that aspect of your career, and how does acting on stage compare to acting in front of a camera?


In my opinion, acting on stage is more vocal and projection oriented and “live” with no second chances, whereas in front of the camera there is more range for adjustments of many sorts that may be made for a performance and scene completion. In addition, there is more than one take along with film editing and creativity.


What got you into acting in the first place, and what can you tell us about your training as an actor?


There was an interest in acting at an early age by performing in school plays, musicals and the school band. After graduating from high school and university, I acted on being an IT Consultant and IT Architect. After 15 years in the IT industry, I pursued a full time acting career, following my heart and passion, and moved to Los Angeles, California in 2009. Upon moving to Los Angeles, I had enrolled in numerous acting and improv courses. Please see IMDb link for credited work. 

Links for Johnny J. Sullivan:


Actors (or indeed actresses) who inspire you?


I have many, but to name just a small portion of my list and in no order...

Jack Nicholson, Tom Cruise, John Candy, Steve Martin, Matt Damon, John J. Sullivan, Alec Baldwin, Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Martin Sheen, Gordon Pinsent, Charlie Sheen, Johnny Depp, Dustin Hoffman, Jennifer Aniston, Robert Downey jr, Meryl Streep, Sissy Spacek.


Filmmakers who have influenced you?


I have many, but to name just a small portion of my list and in no order...

Clint Eastwood, Peter Strauss, Jerry Bruckheimer, J.J. Abrams, Quentin Tarantino, Dov S-S Simens, Harvey Weinstein.


Your favourite movies?


Top Gun, As Good as It Gets, Meet the Fockers, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Planes, Trains & Automobiles, Moose on the Loose, Dirty Harry, Donnie Brasco, Scarface, Pulp Fiction, Carrie, Rich Man, Poor Man, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Kramer vs. Kramer, A Whale for the Killing, The Bourne Identity (and sequels), Mission: Impossible (and sequels), The Way.


... and of course, films you really deplore?


I always try and find something positive – a takeaway from a movie.


Your website, Facebook, whatever else?


To support our project Moose on the Loose, please see the links below:

IMDb (plus trailer):

Official Movie Site:

Facebook ("like" it):


Johnny J. Sullivan:

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


I am originally from Canada. I hold dual citizenship, both Canadian and American.

This feature project, Moose on the Loose, was my directorial debut, and was most special to me and very dear to my heart. The project had its inception by a conversation between my father and I while driving in Newfoundland, Canada in the summer of 2010. He had helped me with the project on various levels. Unfortunately, my father passed on November 29, 2010, just prior to Hollywood production. This feature documentary/comedy within a documentary was inspired by actual events and is dedicated to the memory of my father.


Michael, I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to do an interview with you and provide my story to you and your audience. Thanks in advance to all of your audience and readers for showing support for our projects.


Johnny : )


Thanks for the interview!


© by Mike Haberfelner

Legal note: (re)Search my Trash cannot
and shall not be held responsible for
content of sites from a third party.

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
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Michael Haberfelner


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