Your new movie Attack
of the Killer Shrews! - in a few words, what is it about, and what
can you tell us about your character in it?
Itís a no budget love letter to 1950ís creature features while
being an unapologetically over-the-top satire of them. I play a slimy
literary agent that the shrews are inexplicably attracted toÖ
What did you
draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much Marcus
Ganci-Rotella can we find in Lewis?
I approached Lewis as
though in any other movie, he would have been the villain (albeit an
unsuccessful one), but unfortunately for him, a bunch of ravenous killer
rodents got in the way. I donít think there is too much of myself in him
really; I donít think Iím that slimy.
Honestly, how much
fun was it running from and fighting "Killer Shrews"?
extended chase sequence was a lot of fun, and it actually happened
organically. I was supposed to run and they were supposed to briefly chase
me, but when we shot he scene, Ken Cosentino (the director who was also the
cinematographer) and whoever was puppeteering the shrew kept chasing me so
I just kept running.
did you get involved with the project in the first place, and are creature
features in general something you're at all fond of?
turned a negative into a positive when funding fell through for another
movie that we were already knee deep in the pre-production stage of.
Instead of giving up, we went with plan B. We pooled our talents and
resources together along with a budget that even Roger Corman [Roger
Corman bio - click here] would scoff
at, and two weeks later, we had Attack
of the Killer Shrews!
As far as
creature features go, I grew up watching them with my grandfather. Nobody
else in our family was into that sort of thing, so they hold a special
place in my heart for that reason. I wish he could have seen our take on
the shrews, Iím sure he would have enjoyed laughing at my misfortune.
you actually seen the original The
Killer Shrews, and if so, your thoughts about that movie?
have seen the original several times; itís a product of its time. It is
enjoyable if for nothing else than the dogs and the puppets. To this day,
I would much rather watch a movie with practical FX, even less than
stellar practical FX than a CGI circle jerk. CGI has its place, but it
should be used to complement the practical stuff. When done right, it can
be magical; thereís a reason Jurassic Park still holds up nearly
twenty-five years later.
talk about your director Ken Cosentino, and what was your collaboration
with him like?
First, let me say that he will be thrilled
you spelt his last name correctly. The surprising frequency with which
people misspell it has become a running joke within our circle. Ken and I
have been friends for as long as I can remember.
bonded over our shared love for horror movies, and I have fond memories of
countless movie nights at his home. I like to think of myself as
the Bruce Campbell to his Sam Raimi, and by that I mean I may not always
be a lead, but Iím always around somewhere within his work.
You also had production duties on
of the Killer Shrews! - so what were the challenges there?
both playing the character and the production duties were difficult at
times for me, but luckily I have a good team surrounding me and we are
always there to pick up a little slack for one another when necessary.
can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
was definitely run-and-gun filmmaking. It was all very fast-paced. The
days were long and with little downtime besides our cherished lunch break.
Everybody was game for the challenge though, and we all had a lot of fun.
It was Hell sometimes, but once we were done, everybody was asking when we
were making the next one.
future projects you'd like to share?
We hope to do a sequel
of sorts, but that all depends on how successful this movie is. It will be
a continuation of the Shrewniverse with the surviving characters having to
combat a new monstrous threat. I wish I could say more, but until it is
official, that is all I can say.
What got you into
acting in the first place, and did you receive any formal education on the
As technology has improved, it has helped give the
little guys a shot at filmmaking, and is no longer seen as a strictly
Hollywood endeavor. I have no formal education, Iím just a guy who loves
all things cinema and is beyond thrilled to be involved in the independent
What can you tell us about your filmwork prior
to Attack of
the Killer Shrews!?
The first time I was on a film
set, I was an actor person (a nice way of saying an extra) for Troma
Films. I distinctly remember watching the Toxic Avenger movies when I was
probably way too young to be doing so, and to be on one of their sets and
meet Lloyd Kaufman felt unfathomable to me. Since then, I have had bit
parts in various projects as well as a few lead roles. Wolf House is
probably the most noteworthy; it is a found footage horror flick that was
recently released by Wild Eye Releasing. It is currently available at most
Walmart stores across the United States as well as on Amazon.
Quite a few of your movies
are of the horror variety - coincidence, or is this a genre you're at all
fond of, and why (not)?
It is a combination of things; I
love horror and it is also a genre that can be made with limited funds.
For better or for worse, it is why there are so many indie horror movies
How would you describe yourself
as an actor, and some of your techniques to bring your characters to life?
a good question. I have done different things to prepare for different
roles. If itís a sizeable role, I usually write out a brief biography of
the character. I come up with a backstory to help me understand why he is
the way he is. My character in Wolf House
for example had a pretty
involved backstory with many parallels to myself.
(and indeed actresses) who inspire you?
Iím a big fan of
Lon Chaney sr. I love how he brought so many different looks to his roles.
Too many actors are themselves first and the character second. A slightly
more recent example would be Gary Oldman.
with Lloyd Kaufman
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
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The links below
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Although there are certain genres I am more into
than others, I watch just about everything. This is an impossible question
for me to answer, and I have already taken up enough of your time.
... and of course, films you really deplore?
bad movies are one of my favorite genres. Troll 2 and
The Room are
probably my favorites. Iím weird when it comes to movies, I embrace some
truly crap films, but I also am a snob regarding others. The movies I
especially donít like are the ones where you know the people involved
could have done better and have no excuse for the end product.
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
DVDs of Attack
of the Killer Shrews!
can be purchased at
Itís also on Facebook at
I am part of White Lion Studios, LLC and we can be found on
you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
feel like I have talked too much already. Thanks for your time!
for the interview!