Episode 033 – Producer Director Actor Brad Coolidge – Part 2

Filmmaker Brad Coolidge likes hockey

Filmmaker Brad Coolidge likes hockey

Here is part 2 of my interview with Brad Coolidge.

If you’ve ever thought you might want to direct a film, this is a great interview for you because my buddy Brad talks honestly about some of the challenges he faced as a first time director shooting a “creature feature.”

Sometimes the elements don’t cooperate, or your creature gets held up in customs and arrives late, or you don’t have enough days on the schedule.   There are so many obstacles awaiting you when you make a film.

Brad and his wife, Melissa, along with their producing partner, Todd Labarowski, make beautiful indie movies as well.  We talked about these in detail in part 1 of the interview, but here are the links again to those great films: What Maisie Knew, Prince AvalancheJoe,  The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Him AND Her, Manglehorn, and The World Made Straight.

Enjoy the interview.  Topics covered:

  • Back to our conversation in progress, El Chupacabra (1:25)
  • Setting the movie in Austin, paring down the budget, casting in NY, LA and locally (5:06)
  • Approaching go time, creature creation by Mario Torres, Jr. (7:22)
  • First day — driving scenes, Texas State University (9:50)
  • Relying on experienced crew, location scouting, spending a lot of time on the master (12:29)
  • Complication at the beginning of the first week (19:19)
  • Weather does not cooperate, steady cam (22:22)
  • Creature challenges, no time to rehearse (24:56)
  • Reworking, editing what’s in the can (33:00)
  • Inspiring the troupes, “Once more unto the breach!” (34:56)
  • A little about raising money (39:46)
  • Working on a script with Brad, Drilling Company connection (44:16)
  • Treating people well on a film set (46:37)

Episode 029 – David Marantz – Actor and Voice-Over Artist


David Marantz and Stephen Bittrich in the webseries OFF OFF.

Dave and I have been working on projects together for a while… in fact he is one of the stars and a co-producer of the webseries I created, Off Off.

But in this interview we concentrate on his newest triumph, Audio Book Narrator.  At this time of this interview he’s narrated 51 books on Audible.com.  (Check out his page!)


Dave Marantz at work narrating books

I should also mention that Dave is now starring as Malvolio in the Drilling Company’s Shakespeare in the Parking Lot production of Twelfth Night.  (I hear he’s quite fetching in yellow cross-garters.)

For more information about Dave, check out his website.

Topics covered in the interview:

  • Hi Dave! (2:18)
  • Our Drilling Company Theater roots (5:24)
  • The Whisper Room – Sound Booth (8:45)
  • Dave’s impulse to be in the arts (10:03)
  • His job helping lawyers take depositions (15:50)
  • The voice-over artist is born, Audible Books (19:25)
  • The first book, Raising Stony Mayhall, by Daryl Gregory (Audible’s “Zombie Book of the Year 2011) (23:38)
  • Literary porn and truck drivers (28:51)
  • A new Neal Asher project, science fiction writer (31:22)
  • Characters with unique voices, keeping characters straight, the job’s biggest challenges (38:12)
  • The engineer, the studio set up (45:00)
  • Recent book, Innovative State: How New Technologies Can Transform Government by Aneesh Chopra (49:50)
  • The money aspect of the job (52:45)
  • Being naked on stage, Take Me Out (56:00)
  • “Most interesting or bizarre or horrible audition story” (1:03:14)
  • Health Insurance story (1:09:53)
  • Shout out to the webseries Off Off (1:11:53)

Episode 024 – Jessi Blue Gormezano and Joe Jung – Project Theater and Our Bar NYC


Jessi_Blue_and_Joe_Jung_1Joe Jung and Jessi Blue Gormezano are a talented and adorable theater couple.  I was first introduced to their work with a production of the dark comedy, The Secretaries, produced by their NYC company, Project Theater.

And then when a production of my play Home of the Great Pecan was done at The Drilling Company, we were lucky enough to get Jessi in the lead for that fun Texas romp.

In 2009 they formed a site specific theater experience which has been going strong ever since called Our Bar, which is set – surprise! – in a bar.  It’s a great NYC experience where the audience feels like it’s literally in the middle of the show – and can drink and eat at the same time!  And there always seems to be live music afterwards often performed by the jug band, The Saltcracker Crazies.  So the party goes on well after the show!

Please enjoy my time with the very entertaining, Jessi and Joe.  And don’t miss Our Bar which is the first Wednesday of every month; the next show is called Stuck, and it’s on May 7th, 2014.

Topics covered in the interview:

  • Intro  (0:00)
  • Hello Jessi and Joe! The beginnings of Project: Theater (3:11)
  • Backing up in time, how the stars aligned and these kids met (8:43)
  • How I was introduced to Jessi and Joe during the run of The Secretaries by the Five Lesbian Brothers (15:04)
  • My Custom Van by Michael Ian Black (20:40)
  • Joe gets a great job in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (23:46)
  • The OurBarNYC experience, the jug band origin (31:50)
  • Jessi Blue in Home of the Great Pecan (45:25)
  • Jessi Blue, the writer emerges, Mark My Words (48:42)
  • Joe has very specific news on upcoming projects (50:15)
  • How to start a theater company (53:08)
  • “Bizarre, Interesting or Horrible Audition Stories” – Joe’s first (56:26)
  • Jessi’s audition story (1:08:21)

As usual my buddy Sal Clemente (of Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra) who wrote the podcast theme song, “Here We Go Again,” plays us out.  URO has a concert coming up.  Click the link to find out more!