Your new movie Airplane
vs Volcano - in a few words, what is it about?
It's about a commercial airliner that gets trapped within a ring of
erupting volcanoes. The pilots are dead and the plane is stuck on
auto-pilot in a constant loop. What do you do?
an airplane? Why a volcano? And what were your inspirations when writing
Haha. Well, the title didn't come from
us. That came from Asylum. All of their films are pre-sold with a title
and poster. This was no different. We originally passed on writing, but
when we found out no one could make it work longer than a scene, haha. So
we turned to each other and asked "How would we do it in our voice
and still enjoy it?" The more we talked the more we had fun with it.
Our main inspiration was we joked saying, "It's Speed, but in the
air!" Other inspirations derived from Tony Scott films and the
disaster films from the 70's. We even have some references to the original
What can you tell us about the
writing process as such, and what was your collaboration with your brother
The writing process from inception to shooting was 9
months. Most of it was waiting on notes, but my brother and I get along
very well with each other. That's not to say we aren't honest. If something
isn't working we'll let the other know. Not to mention having to write not
just for ourselves, but we have to get the approvals of 5 other opinions
(all of which have their own idea of what the film should be). It
can be challenging at times, but we try to remain patient. We look at
notes as a healthy challenge and ask ourselves, "How can I do this
note, but make something that we'll like too?" A lot of those times,
the film improves into a much better place than it was before.
vs Volcano being a disaster movie, is that a genre at all dear to
Who isn't in love with this genre? Especially the
classics like Airport '75, Earthquake, The Towering Inferno or
Poseidon Adventure. They're all crazy, but they present that
"What if?" question and ask "How would people act in a
situation like this?" It allows for some fun opportunities!
How would you describe your directorial approach to
your subject at hand - and how do you and your brother complement one another in the
We approached the film with one thing in
mind--don't stop moving! The energy needs to be high as well as the
intensity. There's always danger at every moment. Never are they out of
the woods. So we wanted constant tension and suspense on both the plane
and military base. My brother and I handle different areas of directing.
James handles the technical side and I handle the performance, however, we
do cross-over at times.
Do talk about the effects work on
vs Volcano for a bit, and how much creative influence did you have
on that aspect of your movie?
Biggest challenge is the VFX.
On a film that's Michael Bay expectations, but we're only given 100 VFX shots that's when we start to get a little creative. What was nice was the
VFX dept and our VFX supervisor Sasha Burrow were very excited to work on
this. We were as specific as we could be with what we wanted and they
delivered it in spades! We gotta hand it to these guys and gals, having
very little time to do these shots is impressive! Many people don't know
how insane The Asylum
is, but the VFX dept probably has a month to complete a film (if they're lucky). So there's no one else we respect more than our
Your movie being produced
by The Asylum
- what was your collaboration with the studio like, how big was their
influence on the finished product?
Collaborating with a
studio is very much like a marriage. Both partners have to hear each other
out and in this case let's say the studio is the wife in the relationship.
The saying "Happy wife, happy life" definitely comes into play.
You have to pick your battles. Not insinuating that our relationship was a
battlefield of course.
Your cast features
two quite stellar leads, Dean Cain and Robin Givens - so why exactly them,
how did you get them, and what was it like working with them?
studio handles the star casting and we have our fingers crossed.
Thankfully, we got Dean and Robin both of whom were absolutely amazing to
work with. Dean is awesome, hilarious, brought his pilot's knowledge to
the character and above all patient. Robin is the sweetest woman ever. You
could tell she was having a blast! After a take of spouting out all this
science-jargon she'll erupt into laughter. She even approached us and told
us how much she loved seeing us having fun! That made our week and then
talk about the rest of your cast for a bit, and why exactly these people?
cast was great! Couldn't have asked for a better cast! Lawrence
Hilton-Jacobs brought the intensity we wanted for Air Marshall Jim
Kirkland (reference to Cpt. Jim Kirk) and a sense of cool! This man
could've been (and was supposed to be) Shaft! Tamara Goodwin as Rita
nailed it! She came in on her first day and blew us away crying her eyes
out! Morgan West is fantastic as SPC. Tully. Just being around him
prompted everyone else to bring their A-Game! Definitely leading man
material! Matt Mercer as Landon is a guy who can naturally be funny (some
of my favorite lines are his), be heroic and bring on the drama! Love this
guy! Anthony Marks is a badass as Frank! The only guy with the balls to go
out onto to a wing of a plane and unclog an engine! There are so many to
point out. This film is overloaded with talent.
can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
on-set atmosphere was one word--fun. We always wanted to keep the set
easy-going, confrontational, and above all else--creative. Studies show
that being positive affects your environment. This was true for our set.
Everyone saw us having fun and wanted to vdo a top-notch job just to watch us
jump out of our chairs cheering! (happened on many occasions)
the film only about to be released - anything you can tell us about
audience and critical reception so far?
We, including the
cast, crew, VFX dept (true critics!), are enormously proud of this BIG
little film. We tried to entertain and have people hanging in suspense as
well as ground this crazy film with some humanity. I think people can
easily judge what we didn't do, in response I challenge them to judge us
on what this film did do.
projects you'd like to share?
Sure. James directed a film
solo while I was getting married back in December. It's an alien film
called, Age of Tomorrow, that is balls to the wall nuts! I looked at the 8
act and said, "Holy Christ, there's a major climax at the end of
every act!" That comes out June 10th to DVD and VOD! Recently,
we've departed from The Asylum
to work on other features. We just produced
our first feature under our production company, Dual Visions. The film is
titled, The Divine Tragedies
a.k.a. Blood Brothers. We have some great horror names in this one
like: Ken Foree (Dawn of the
Dead, Devil's Rejects), Barbara Crampton (Re-Animator,
You're Next), Sean Whalen (People Under the Stairs, Twister), and Lynn
Lowry (Shivers, The
Crazies). I encourage everyone to look us up on Facebook for all of the film's updates. We'll be taking the film to
festivals soon. Then, we have a few other projects in the works that we'll
write and direct.
What got you into
filmmaking in the first place?
Loving to watch movies is
the main suspect. Our films are mixes of the films we loved growing up.
There are still so many stories to tell.
What can you tell us
about your filmwork prior to Airplane
James comes from an editing background
and I come from a casting background. We've worked on nearly 20 features
at the studio. We wrote our first feature A House is not a Home that was
produced back in 2012. That paved the way to getting hired on Airplane
How would you describe yourselves as
We're fun, easy going, always laughing and
smiling, but we also have that dark side no one can see. No one, but us.
Filmmakers who inspire you?
Raimi # 1. Evil Dead is so damn inspiring! It has burned a permanent
impression in both of our minds. We have so many inspirations. But this is
the one worth mentioning.
Jaws, Indiana Jones, Halloween,
The Thing, Robocop, Conan the
Barbarian, Terminator, Tremors,
Deep Rising, and Nightmare on Elm Street to name a few.
... and of course, films you really
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
We always say you'll never know a movie's good
unless you've seen the bad ones. Our new favorite bad movie is Miami
Connection. Huge fans of the genius that is that film! The songs are
Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever
The Kondelik Brothers website http://www.thekondelikbrothers.com/
The Kondelik Brothers Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/TheKondelikBrothers
The Kondelik Brothers Twitter https://twitter.com/thekondelikbros
The Divine Tragedies Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/divinetragediesmovie
Anything else you are dying to tell us and I have
merely forgotten to ask?
Thanks for the interview!