Your new movie All
Over Again - in a few words, what is it about?
All Over Again
is a story about never letting go of passions and pursuing
poetry scene and open mic nights - are those at all circles you're moving
in in your private life, and your thoughts about them?
open mic night scenes are recreations of evenings I assisted running while
attending Chestnut Hill College, being involved with the poetry club,
along with the following three years after graduation where I traveled to
different cafťs, coffee shops, and small restaurants between Philadelphia
and New Jersey. Open mic nights were pretty incredible experiences,
especially if you found a few places where the audience was open and
sincere to all levels of performers. The atmosphere was very intimate and
interesting to see what the next performer would have on their mind to
discuss and watch the next musician play a new piece or cover.
All Over Again in
any way an autobiographical film, and to what extent could you identify
with your lead Luis?
film is semi-autobiographical as far as the open mic night coffee shop
scenes - Iíve participated reciting poetry in open mic nights since
college along with performing in the Bus Stop Music Cafť, where principle
photography for the film was shot. In reference to the character Luis -
his poetry is along my style I like to perform at the mic, but I took it a
step further with publishing a book, titled Perception in college - which
I feel is what the end goal for Luis would be.
(Other) sources of inspiration when
writing All Over Again?
always enjoyed music, especially blue grass folk music, ie. Bob Dylan, Dan
Fogelberg, Jimmy Webb, etc. When Joe Fuoco and I met in acting
classes he brought his guitar in and played a couple chords for us humming
melodies, and this moment helped gain inspiration for one direction in
telling the story.
also wrote all the poetry in All
Over Again - so do talk about Joseph McGovern the poet for a bit,
and how do you usually approach writing poetry?
always considered myself a poet first, I began writing poetry at the end
of my sophomore year of college as a form of therapy to help work through
the death of my cousin Michael. In time, through a few wonderful
professors' classes, including my own studies, I gained an appreciation for
poetry and learned how effective a tool it can be used to challenge
readers. In concerns of my approach to poetry - I donít have any direct
approach to writing; depends on the piece as a case by case basis: How
intricate do I want the piece to be, rhythm, will it rhyme, characters and
development, plot, etc. I donít really believe much in structure and a
particular form - for my personal work Iím aiming for two things: First
and most importantly - I donít want the reader to be told, I want them
to feel the words if theyíre right there experiencing the emotions and
message. Second, I want to break down barriers of forms and not be bound
in any way. Allen Ginsberg said it best, ďNot until after several hours
of writing do you get to the good stuff.Ē
you tell us about your directorial approach to your story at hand?
it comes to my approach for a project, while Iím writing the screenplay
Iím envisioning the film in its entirety - not particularly every minor
detail but the message as a whole. Storyboarding is minimal - most of the
time left to stick figures if the crew or actors need a visual. I
strongly encourage my actors to discuss every question they have no matter
how small - I coach them to become the character overtime through table
reads and rehearsals to the type of scenes. I try to remain as close to
the screenplay as possible but am always up to creating on the spot from
inspiration pertaining to the story and characters. The most important
aspect to being a creator is I want the film to be as real as possible, I
donít want the audience to be told the story but to feel the story. I
want the audience to feel the emotions conveyed, as if theyíre present
with the characters and they can put themselves in the characters shoes.
talk about your key cast, and why exactly those people?
I was taking acting classes, with Weist-Barron Ryan of Atlantic City, I
was scouting talent coming through the studio and in the classes I was
taking for my own projects. I met Joseph Fuoco (Greg) and David Andro (Luis) in
classes and audition sessions for the agents. Also, I did an open cast
call for actors around the area at their studio and this is how I met
Mahdid Shaji (Adam), and Constance Reshey (Victoria) was personally selected by the
owner of the studio after watching her auditions. I personally felt
everyone brought something to the table for me to work with and where
character development was needed I coached them months in advance prior to
shooting. When we were on set these principle actors brought a lot of
energy and enthusiasm, wanted to learn, and when they werenít acting
were eager to help with crew jobs to help move production along. That kind
of drive canít be taught - Iíll take that form any day over the best
talent because I can work with them to create my vision for the project.
few words about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
on-set atmosphere in the cafe was very relaxed. The owner, Vic Martison,
allowed us to come in after 8pm and film until we were finished for the
evening which provided an opportunity to take our time. Everyone in the
cast got along well. The shoot was very enjoyable.
$64-question of course, where can your movie be seen?
Over Again will be open to the public on Vimeo and possibly YouTube by
this winter due to the film is still on the festival circuit and needs to
remain private until completed.
you can tell us about audience and critical reception of All
So far when I attend film festival
screenings for All
Over Again the audience provides a positive reaction to it. I feel
it helps everyone can one way or another relate to the story and Gregory.
Critical reception have been between average to above average. There are
both critic reviews and audience reviews on the filmís IMDb page.
Any future projects you'd like to
have another short film, Hush - a little more on the controversial
side - completed, and Inside Jonathan Fox - pertaining to the morning
routine of Jonathan Fox who has OCD.
What got you into making movies in the first
place, and did you receive any formal training on the subject?
been passionate about movies since I was a child. Beginning with the
animations growing up watching mostly mainstream films, and
about my junior year of high school I began discovering independent film.
Coming from a mainstream family and finding indie films, I loved the risks
taken with the stories and characters. I didnít receive formal training
in regards to filmmaking. I taught myself how to write screenplays over a
five year period prior to writing All
Over Again and I figured out
how to produce a film, shoot on cinema cameras and do all post production
work with the exception of sound design and scoring, which my good friend
Matthew Amadio provides his talents.
can you tell us about your filmwork prior to All
Prior to All
Over Again I had two
failed attempts at creating two different short films, first one Before
youíre Lost was a romantic comedy which I did finish but didnít
come out as imagined. The second Stand Up was an anti-bully campaign
PSA short which unfortunately was lost in post production, mainly from
production errors and budgeting issues. After those two films didnít
turn out the way I wanted I went back to acting school and began writing
more short films, All
Over Again being one, while I received a
couple acting jobs in small independent films. I took up multiple jobs
after the acting slowed down and with the assistance from my executive
producers, together we began financing my current projects.
How would you describe yourself as a
As a creator Iím very meticulous. I know what I
want for my end vision and I will do everything I can to arrive as close
to perfection in my own perspective for the project. Most importantly
Iím fair working in my productions.
Filmmakers who inspire you?
Malick, Stanley Kubrick, David Lynch, Woody Allen, David Mamet, James
Cameron, Gus Van Sant, Lars von Trier, Sidney Lumet, Nicolas Winding Refn,
Steve McQueen, Panos Cosmatos, Richard Linklater, Yorgos Lanthimos, Darren
Aronofsky, David Fincher, Ang Lee, and many others have influenced me.
My absolute favorite film is Into the
Wild. Other films Iíve enjoyed: Tree of Life, Only God
Forgives, Beyond the Black Rainbow, Eyes Wide Shut, Tape,
My Own Private Idaho, Hunger, Elephant Man, The Deer Hunter,
The Lobster, Fight Club, Oleanna, Titanic, Match Point,
Total Eclipse, Taking
Woodstock, Nymphomaniac Vol. I & II, Before the Devil Knows
Youíre Dead, The
Fountain, The Boondock Saints, Boys Donít Cry, Good Will Hunting and way too many more.
... and of course, films you really
Aside from the majority of mainstream movies,
there is always some aspect to the creative process I can find enjoyable
even with films I might not connect with.
Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever
Filmmaking/writing Facebook fan page:
Over Again IMDb page:
Hush is up on IMDb with a trailer and production/BTS stills:
Anything else you're dying to mention and I have
merely forgotten to ask?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
If you watch the film a second
time and look a little deeper you will find more to the story, one
example: Different level experiences of poetry being recited. I felt this
was very important aspect to the story due to the Bus Stop Music Cafť was
not only a location but a character in the film. And with the different
levels of poetry being recited from beginners to professionals and in
between it shows this was not a typical open mic night coffee shop - the
audience encourages the performers to go on stage and are open to however
experienced they were. In my opinion, having gone to many open mic nights
and have been ďbooĒ off stage when I first began writing and
performing, working my way up to clapping and ovations - I wanted to
create a welcoming atmosphere and maybe it can help in the future for open
mic nights such as this to have people become more open and accepting to
performers and their stories.
Thanks for the interview!