Phil Vaglia will play "Henry." Phil was the Cinematographer for "Meter" as well as played the lead role in "Easy Mark." He wrote the script for "Mark" as well. It was based off a Talmage Powell story. As well as film, Phil wrote, starred, produced, and directed a hilarious internet sitcom entitled, "Phil TV." You can still check out all the episodes on his You Tube channel. Ol and I almost forgot, Phil also is a great musician. He used to be my boss and our collaboration began when I edited "Easy Mark." Phil was originally going to put as a producer, co-director for Jeopardy, but then things and elements kind of transformed for the best.
Phil’s Acting Reel
Mark Alton Rose will play "Captain Odem." If you keep up with me, you know Mark and he needs no introduction. Mark graduated from LR with a Bachelor in Theater. He’s been in several films and plays throughout his career. Since playing Charles in Meter, he’s appeared in feature films such as, ‘April Fools Day’ and ‘Harmony Ranch.’ He’s appeared in Sprint and Food Lion commercials and sometime way back when, this guy wrote a book entitled, ‘Especially for Christians.’ Ol and I almost forgot he was a voice personality on radio for many years…. Anything else?… Sure, but my fingers are starting to hurt. Mark was my original pick to play Henry, but Rick's story and vision of Henry, didn't match Mark's appearance or demeanor, (unless we had a tons of money to sink into makeup and prosthetics.) I took the liberty of changing Henry's appearance to a skinny, sleep deprivated, and pasty guy.
Mark from Meter
Then there was my promise to Rick to stay true to his story. I realized when I was writing the fictitious Captain Odem, (he does not appear in the story,) I was picturing Mark in a trench coat, slim tie, deep voice….
I made a decision and went back on my word to Mark. I called Mark and begged him for forgiveness and ask him if he had a problem changing roles. I sold him on the fact that Odem had as many lines as Henry and he only, (again for the second film in a row,) had to put up with me for one night as opposed to four. Mark graciously forgave me and accepted the role which meant I would lose Phil from the crew, but make a perfect “Henry” in Rick’s eyes.
When I was reading the story for the first time I did not envision Dana. The story is a Third Person Narration from Henry’s POV so you really never “saw” Dana close up. Then as I wrote the script I honestly still couldn’t envision her, (which is terrible considering it’s my movie.) In fact when I began drawing my storyboards, I had no idea what Dana was to look like, so all my boards misrepresent her completely. I thought small frame, glasses, great style, and athletic. That’s all.
As I began to really begin working on this film and getting in the mindset of doing it, a TV pilot contest came up that Freddy wanted to do with his, ‘Platters’ sitcom. A couple Sunday’s later we were shooting. I had seen almost all 10 actors’ headshots that were appearing in ‘Platters’ from the ‘Tag Along’ process but had not met any of them. The week before that Sunday, I had probably had one of the worst weeks recorded in 2007. I was working on two hours of sleep and no vision or prep on how I was going to shoot this pilot. So to make a long story short, (as I need to figure out how to do more often,) I didn’t talk nor get to know anybody in that room that day.
Christina Cupo was one of the girls who appeared in that sitcom. She was like the hippy-type, liberal, who didn’t believe in fighting and stayed on a yoga strict schedule. As I was editing Platters, I was like, “who is this girl?” I opened up the folder on my CPU that had all the old photo/headshots compiled from Tag Along and found her headshot. Her head shot looked completely different. Not in a feature kind of way but more attitude. In her headshot she’s beautiful, professional and confident. Then the girl she plays in Platters is cute, bubbly, and a little insecure. No makeup. No fancy pose and I was like, man… “There’s Dana!” Then I think, (I don’t remember exactly,) but I believe that night an email from Mark came through that read: “Hey, that Christina girl would be great to play Dana.” I had to smile. I emailed her and the rest is history.
Christina’s IMDB Page
With the switch around that took place Freddy got kind of screwed because he went from Odem to Newspaper Vendor, but then it came up that Freddy may not be in town when we shoot the film. So to mend the situation, I am writing a bit speaking role for a second Detective who walks up to Odem and gives him a little more information and if Freddy’s here, we’re going to shoot it. If not, we are going to keep the script the way it is.
As far as the other small roles in Jeopardy such as the Newspaper Vendor, Man in the Elevator, Dana’s Friend and the Detectives, it was always my idea to put different crew people in the small brief roles. If we can get Rick down from West Virginia, I wanted to have him be the Third Man in the Elevator, maybe have me be the Newspaper Vendor. We’ll burn that bridge when the time comes.
As far as Pre-Production goes…. I’m at a dead stop. The NC Film Commission, Mark and I are trying to find a replacement location for the key final scene. I haven’t made any additional big moves, awaiting the outcome. We may end up moving the whole shoot to Charlotte or Asheville depending. In between those times, I’m trying to finish storyboards and fake magazines.
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