WWE Superstar Brodus Clay reflects on No One Lives

WWE superstar Brodus Clay was stretching out ringside, banged up with 13 staples after taking a ladder to the head, when he was approached about his interest in a movie project affiliated with WWE Studios. For Clay, an avid movie buff, it was a one-sentence sell. The answer was yes; don’t need to know who’s in it and don’t need the synopsis. Yes. He was then informed he’d shortly be whisked away to LA for casting, which he assumed translated to something along the lines of auditions. Turns out it was a physical casting of a rubber mold for his body that he nun too subtly implies would be ravaged in the course of the film. In fact, he was rather startled, amused then ecstatic to hear that the script called for an elaborate cinematic death. And I sure don’t want to hear any “spoiler alert” protests from any of you; the movie’s titled No One Lives, so get over it.

Continue reading WWE Superstar Brodus Clay reflects on No One Lives

Death Metal in Angola. No, really.

Wilker Flores, Death Metal Angola

Documentarian Jeremy Xido never expected to find rock bands in Africa. He was in Angola for an entirely different reason, looking for footage to use on a different film. So when he bumped into a musician at a Huambo coffee shop and asked the guy what type of music he played, he was stunned to hear “Death Metal.”

“It totally blew my mind,” Xido recalls. “I told him he had to play for me.” The result was the film Death Metal Angola, which screens at this year’s Sarasota Film Festival. Continue reading Death Metal in Angola. No, really.

A Song Still Inside: Interview with Gregory Collins

Gregory Collins

One of the films holding its world premiere at the Sarasota Film Festival this year is A Song Still Inside, the story of a father juggling the role of actor/screenwriter and stay-at-home dad while watching his actress wife enjoy greater professional success. It should come as no surprise that writer-director Gregory Collins has children of his own, and drew inspiration from his own life.

“I think in retrospect, I started writing this the night my first daughter was born,” Collins told SRQ Backlot in an interview last week.

Continue reading A Song Still Inside: Interview with Gregory Collins

Sumner, Call, Clay To Attend SFF

Mickey Sumner

Frances Ha star and Sting offspring Mickey Sumner will attend the Sarasota Film Festival, organizers announced today. Read about Sumner other other newly announced stars in attendance past the jump. Continue reading Sumner, Call, Clay To Attend SFF

This is Normal: an interview with Director Derek Watson

Imagine waking up and instead of hopping in the shower or lazily walking to your sink to brush your teeth, you have to walk 2 or 3 kilometers to a lake where the contaminated water causes diarrheal disease. This is normal for Petranella, a mother of 8 and native of Zambia. This Is Normal, a short film directed by Derek Watson, explores the Global water crisis, where millions of humans don’t have access to clean water. I had the esteemed pleasure of interviewing Mr. Watson earlier today and learned a little more about the short film. Continue reading This is Normal: an interview with Director Derek Watson

Launching! SRQ Backlot’s Film Guide

In our never-ending quest to enhance the SRQ Backlot experience, we wanted to draw your attention today to a new feature we have been working on: the SRQ Backlot Film Guide.

It’s simple, really. Take your cursor and simply scroll over the “Films” menu located just below our header image. Here, you can either click on “All Films” to see a list of every film playing at the Sarasota Film Festival this year, or you can click on any feature film or shorts program and get a short description, as provided by the festival.

Why do you, the loyal Backlot reader, need this new feature? While we know many of you will be flipping through the physical guide provided by the festival or checking out SFF’s official webpage, we suspect our readers would like the convenience of having that info here as well. Our listing of films has been an extremely popular post on Backlot since we launched two years ago, and this provides you just a little more info.

But we also want to encourage feedback on the films. Perhaps some of you have already seen one of the films screening this year. Tell us about it. The Sarasota Film Festival ticket-buying audience wants to know what films best suit their taste, and feedback from our users can be a useful tool for that. So please, don’t just check on these movie summaries, tell us what you think of the films. Almost every film screens two times or more, so if you attend the first screening, come back here and tell us what your experience was like.

We want SRQ Backlot to serve not only as your primary source of information on the festival but as a community where cinephiles can talk about film. We hope this new feature provides for that. Enjoy.