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An Interview with Roberto Lombardi, Star and Producer of Masks

by Mike Haberfelner

May 2017

Films starring Roberto Lombardi on (re)Search my Trash


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Your upcoming featurette Masks - in a few words, what is it about, and what can you tell us about your character in it?


Masks was originally conceived as a stand alone short film by Charles A. Christman III and was expanded into a three part series of shorts. It centers on my character, Steve, who is a drug addict and also on Anthony Horton's character of The Mask. The featurette delves into how both of their lives intersect and are altered after The Mask attempts to kill Steve. It's a psychological horror.


What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how much of Roberto Lombardi can we find in Steve?


I have a family member who is a drug addict and I have experience working with law enforcement, so I pulled from those experiences to create Steve. There's a bit of me mixed in there in how Steve reacts to being threatened and how he deals with the threat.


How did you get involved with the project in the first place, and how did you end up on the production side of things as well?


Anthony had worked with Charles before and had already been cast as The Mask. He suggested me to Charles for the Steve role. I read the script and fell in love with it! During rehearsals for the first film, Charles asked me to get involved with producing which led to me directing the second film (as Charles acted in it) and helping to cast the second and third films. I also wrote the "Crazy Kruck" murder scene, so I've worn a few hats on these films!


What were the major challenges of bringing Masks to life from a producer's point of view?


The only real challenge we had was scheduling and the change of seasons. These films take place during winter and summer, so just waiting for snow to melt causes a delay! Plus we had to factor in actor and crew schedules to the equation during production and in post.


To what extent could you identify with Masks' horror theme, and what can you tell us about the movie's approach to the genre?


I think the core of these films and its two central characters is self realization. The Mask is a family man who has dark thoughts he can't come to grips with until one day his true purpose in life becomes clear to him. Steve is wasting his life away on drugs, is an opportunist and comes to realize his true addiction after his encounter with The Mask. I can identify with the self realization aspect of the films. Masks has a late 70's to mid 80's approach to horror. Very psychological and cerebral, yet scary in that you never know when the right set of circumstances can make a person just "snap"...


Do talk about Masks' director Charles A. Christman III for a bit, and what was your collaboration like?


Charles is not only the director, but a writer and producer on this project. He found all the locations also and has been the main coordinator of Masks since 2013. He is extremely focused and dedicated to making his work the very best it can be. He doesn't settle for anything less. From an actor's standpoint, he is one of the most collaborative directors I've worked with and welcomes an actor's perspective on their character. Plus, he's a jokester on set! Shoot days were so much fun! Even though I directed the second film, Charles really was in charge of piecing together and directing the featurette with the help of the producers. I'm looking forward to working with him again.


A few words about your co-stars, and as a producer, did you have a hand in any of the casting?


I worked with Anthony Horton, Walter DeShields, Christian Chase, Jesus M. Villanueva and W. Keith Sgrillo on other projects and not only are they talented and easy to work with, but we're all really good friends. It's a gift to work with people you really like. Everyone in our cast was great! I was responsible for casting Christian Chase and Jesus M. Villanueva.


What can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?


Very focused on the work, but fun! When you get a group of friends together on a film, you can't help but tell war stories. It makes for an amazing filming experience. Even some of the less comfortable scenes were made fun. We kept telling Charles he needed more snow on his head because we just wanted him to put more snow on his head! Not because he needed it! Stuff like that.


As far as I know, the film's still in post production as we speak - so any idea yet when the movie might be released onto the general public, however tentatively?


The film will be completed in early June of 2017. At that point it will be submitted into several film festivals. We're also looking into a venue in Philadelphia for an official premiere and after it finishes it's festival run we'll be looking into a home video release for the featurette as a whole.


Any future projects beyond Masks you'd like to share?


I always have upcoming projects that I can't announce yet unfortuantely, but other than Masks in June I have a film called The Watcher of Park Ave coming out in December. It's a crime drama/horror thriller that also stars Amanda Wyss and Lisa Wilcox.


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


I think that just about covers everything for now! Hope to see you at another festival sometime soon, Mike!


Thanks for the interview!


Thank you as well for covering Masks!


© by Mike Haberfelner

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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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