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An Interview with Wesley Mellott, Director of Binge

by Mike Haberfelner

May 2016

Films directed by Wesley Mellott on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your new movie Binge - in a few words, what is it about?

 

Binge is a psychological thriller about an alcoholic's mental struggle with sobriety. In his newfound sobriety, he uncovers some deeply buried secrets that could tempt him into drinking again.

 

With Binge being about an alcoholic fighting for sobriety, is any of this at all based on your own experience (if you don't mind the rather personal question)? And to what extent can you identify with Max, actually?

 

I think that anyone that has went to college can identify some with Max! (haha) I wish that I could say that this was all made up, but I think that a lot of what happens in the film is based, in some way or another, on things that I have seen in reality. Not necessarily what I have personally experienced, but others around me as well.

 

Other sources of inspiration when writing Binge?

 

There are a lot of filmmakers and films that have inspired all of my works in some way. I think all of David Fincher's works and Stanley Kubrick's The Shining are several that probably had the most direct influence on this piece.

 

With Binge crossing several genres rather effortlessly, was that intended from the get-go, or did it just happen during writing?

 

It actually wasn't. This was actually first written as a 20-minute strict psychological thriller, but I kinda just fell in love with the plot and the main character that I couldn't stop developing his dramatic struggle.

 

What can you tell us about your directorial approach to your story at hand?

 

One of the biggest things that I try to do is stay out of the actor's way. For the first take, I'll just let them do their thing, since they've developed their characters and know the ins and outs. From there, if there's anything that I really feel needs adjusted, I'll have a quick discussion about what is or isn't working and we'll go from there. Also, since I shoot and edit my films as well, I don't have to waste a lot of time getting a lot of coverage of full scenes. I know the camera angles I want (unless something sporadically pops out at me), and I know where the edit points are.

 

Do talk about your key cast, and why exactly these people?

 

Pretty much all of the cast was filled by friends. The characters that played Max and Steve, Andrew Glessner and Derek Mentzer, are two of my best friends. We all grew up together, appreciate movies, and got into this endeavor together. My girlfriend of almost five years, Susan Chang, was interested in acting in the film as well, so we cast her as the Girl in White. The role of Miranda was the only role we actually auditioned outsiders for, and when Bex Etter auditioned, she absolutely blew me away. I saw her walk in the door, and I knew that was Miranda.

 

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

 

We're a bunch of jokesters (haha). Since we're shooting such heavy, dark material, the cast and crew really loves to joke around in-between takes or else we'd all be absolutely miserable. I know that there are probably professional actors that would hate this style of set, but I think it's crucial that we all have fun while we work or else I don't see the point in doing it.

 

The $64 question of course, where can Binge be seen?

 

You can rent or own Binge by visiting https://www.reelhouse.org/thinkingartentertainment/binge or by visiting our website (www.thinking-art-entertainment.com).  

 

Anything you can tell us about critical and audience reception of your movie?

 

We've had a lot of good word of mouth and were accepted into a variety of indie film festivals, as well as nominated for several awards. Andrew Glessner actually won the Best Actor award at the World Music and Independent Film Festival held in D.C. It was a great accomplishment, and I'm super proud of him and his work on this film. Honestly, I haven't heard too many bad things about the film, which is nice because I've seen the movie a million times now and I know where the mistakes are/what I need to improve on for other projects. I just want the audience to be able to enjoy the story and walk away hopefully thinking critically about what they've just seen.

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

We actually just released a 5-minute short entitled A Dinner (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7Rf1Xx5YgE)

And I'm finishing up post-work on a 20-minute short that we'll be releasing this summer entitled Dilemma. Also, we're in pre-production on a short crime drama titled Marbletown, as well as developing more ideas for regular content. I couldn't be more excited about the projects in our pipeline, and hope our audience continues to enjoy and find value in our work.

 

What got you into filmmaking in the first place, and did you receive any formal education on the subject?

 

I don't know if there's any one person that got me into filmmaking other than myself - as conceited as that sounds. I grew up watching movies and daydreaming, and it kind of just grew into an aspiration ever since my father would take me to the movies when I was a little kid. I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies from Penn State. While my degree made me study all kinds of media, my primary concentration was Film Studies under that major. I took a lot of film theory classes, studied and watched a lot of films, and wrote a lot of papers. It wasn't until I got out of school and was working on my first no-budget indie that I thought to myself "I could actually do this."

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Binge?

 

I wrote and directed a feature length film entitled Blind Circumstance. It's about two best friends who find themselves in the dumps financially and conspire to rob an underground poker game to solve their problems; but obviously, that doesn't quite work out for them (haha). This was basically my in-depth film school as it's where I learned that I was way over my head, and I really needed to organize, spend more time studying, and gain more experience.

 

How would you describe yourself as a director?

 

Friendly (haha). I'm really not a controlling director when it comes to the script. I let everyone know my expectations up front, and I like to treat everyone with respect. I want everyone to enjoy themselves on set and have fun doing what we all love, otherwise it makes the days that much longer.

 

Filmmakers who inspire you?

 

Martin Scorsese, David Fincher, Steven Spielberg, Dennis Villenueve, David Lynch are among my favorite directors, and Roger Deakins is the most inspirational cinematographer working today (give the man his Oscar!).

 

Your favourite movies?

 

Feeling lucky ?
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Find Wesley Mellott
at the amazons ...

USA  amazon.com

Great Britain (a.k.a. the United Kingdom)  amazon.co.uk

Germany (East AND West)  amazon.de

Looking for imports ?
Find Wesley Mellott here ...

Thailand  eThaiCD.com
Your shop for all things Thai

Something naughty ?
(Must be over 18 to go there !)

x-rated  find Wesley Mellott at adultvideouniverse.com

The Departed, Raging Bull, Taxi Driver, Saving Private Ryan, Se7en, Prisoners, No Country for Old Men.

 

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

 

Transformers, for sure!

 

Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?

 

www.Thinking-Art-Entertainment.com

facebook.com/ThinkingArtEntertainment

 

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

 

Like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/wtmpp28). We have a lot of exciting content coming out later this year, and I hope you all enjoy it!

 

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
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
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
ein Roman von
Michael Haberfelner

 

Jetzt kaufen bei
Lulu.com