Saturday, February 26, 2011

Exclusive Interview With Actor Jason Burkey.

TCWreviews’s Administrator and Editor in chief, Clifford Kiyabu, sits down with actor Jason Burkey for an exclusive interview! In the short few years that we at TCWreviews have been around doing what we do best, we’ve had the pleasure of interviewing an array of some of the indie scenes most interesting people, from writers and producers, to actors and directors. We have come a long way with every interviewee we encounter. And it is our most sincere pleasure to sit down with actor Jason Burkey and chat with him about all things in the performance art, including co-starring in a upcoming project entitled “The 10 Commandments of Chloe (2011)” starring Naama Kates and Directed by Princeton Holt.

Good day Jason and welcome to TCWreviews. In just the last few short years, we’ve had some magnificent talents in the very same spot as you right now and we’re pleased to have you as our next interviewee.

Jason: Thanks so much. Happy to be a part of it!

Clifford: Before we go into anything I think there’s an important question that I needed to ask you: With Super Bowl XLV being broadcast to a estimate 111 million people nationwide recently, I’m assuming you caught the game, so who’d you root for, Steelers or Packers?

Jason: Neither. I’m from Chicago so as a Bears fan I hated to see the Packers win, but to be honest it didn’t really matter either way. I was too busy eating mini hot dogs and chips...

Clifford: I feel you, man. Being a life long Cowboys fan I was not watching the game for the game but rather for the half time show and for the commercials! [Laughs]

Clifford: but back on point. I’ve heard a great many things about you, Jason. All good of course! After taking a look over your resume I must say, you’re quite the ambitious person, I mean between 2009 and now you’ve been involved with 8 different projects according to your IMDB. Is there more that isn’t listed?

Jason: Thank you, I appreciate that. Honestly, since I finally worked up the courage to start pursuing acting as a career a little over two years ago, I have been blown away by the opportunities that I’ve had. Doors have opened that I never thought would and I feel very blessed to have been able to work on some great projects with very talented people. There are a couple projects that aren’t listed on IMDB yet; one was an independent feature film I worked on with Chris Odom (the Director of Photography for “10 Commandments of Chloe”) and the other is a TV pilot I’ll be shooting in North Carolina called “Home”, which I’m excited to start working on.

Clifford: Television and feature films are two very different style of entertainment
mediums, which do you prefer more?

Jason: Yes, they are absolutely different in style but both are unique and fun in their own
way. Honestly, I’m not sure if I have a preference. What I love about doing
features is that most times you get to spend at least a month working on the
project, building a strong “family” with the cast and crew. That being said I’ve
always wanted to be a part of a TV show, especially if the show takes off
because then you’re spending even more time filming than you would a feature,
giving you the opportunity to build an even stronger “family” with everyone
working on an ongoing project that you all enjoy.

Clifford: Aside from being an actor, you’re also a writer?

Jason: Yes I suppose I am, but who isn’t? [Laughs] I write scripts for shorts and features on the side simply for the fun of it. I enjoy creating a story and characters out of nothing; that’s one of the coolest parts about the process. It’s kind of odd, but I find that most scripts I write, if not all, are romantic comedies. Not sure if there is some subconscious thing I’m not dealing with there, but I find those the most fun to write. When I’m finished writing, I usually submit a script to a competition just to see what happens. For instance, one of the shorts I wrote, “Date This”, won an online competition for Best Romantic Comedy and was nominated for Best Screenplay at the 2010 World Music and Independent Film Festival last year. Also, my first feature-length script, “Never Two Late”, was a Semi-Finalist in the 2010 Final Draft, Inc. Big Break Contest and Quarter-Finalist in the 2010 BlueCat Screenplay Competition.

Clifford: So it’s safe to say that writing is more of a hobby while acting is your true
Passion then? [Laughs]

Jason: That is absolutely safe to say, yes. [Laughs] Writing can be a lot of fun, but acting
has without a doubt been a passion of mine for most of my life.

Clifford: like most screenplays adapted into feature films, they eventually go
through re-writes and changes during the development stage. Would you have a
problem with another artist taking your works and changing it into their own?

Jason: That’s kind of a tough question. I think the answer is both yes and no. I realize
that a script might/will need to change in order to fit a director’s vision for a film
and that’s fine. I think a problem arises if the script is changed so much that the
most important goal or theme behind the original story is unrecognizable. There
needs to be a balance between “making the script your own” while maintaining
the integrity of the original.

Clifford: I’ve heard of actors having their own personal exercise routine of sort before stepping into a role, for some it’s physical, for others it a mental exercise. Do you do any sort of routine before going on set?

Jason: I wouldn’t consider myself a method actor in the least. That type of routine works great for some actors, for others it doesn’t. When approaching a role, I usually try to find something about that character that I can connect with on a personal level; whether that be a certain experience, relationship, conversation...anything that I can try to relate to. The one physical thing I do on set is right before filming a scene, I like to close my eyes and just picture my character; where he’s been and what he’s about to experience in the story. It helps me focus on the moment itself. However, as soon as the director yells “cut” I’m back to joking around and having fun with the rest of the cast and crew.

Clifford: What was it like Co-starring in “The 10 Commandments of Chloe”?

Jason: It was an amazing opportunity. Naama is such a talented actress, she made it easy to play off her and experiment with our scenes. I had already worked with a few of the other actors in the film, so it was good to see some familiar faces on set everyday. It was evident that everyone involved was dedicated to making this a solid film. Each person played their part perfectly, creating a really unique and enjoyable experience.

Clifford: What's the story behind 10 Commandments of Chloe?

Jason: The film follows this 20-something girl, Chloe, who risks everything to pursue her dream of being a musician in Nashville. She’s really a mysterious character who lives life by her own set of rules or “commandments” and follows them no matter what the circumstance or the consequence. She is soon introduced to other colorful characters who either help or hinder her from attaining her goal.

Clifford: What was it like playing the character "Brandon"?

Jason: I had a blast playing Brandon. He’s a bit more of an edgy character and that’s what I liked about him. Princeton gave us the freedom to completely build our characters from the ground up, which is such a cool opportunity for an actor. Honestly, I feel bad for Brandon. He is a fun-loving guy with a secret. He’s troubled and I think that’s part of what draws him to Chloe. She’s this big mystery to him and he’s determined to discover who she really is. There’s also this sense of jealousy there, because the passion he sees in Chloe he knows is missing in his own life.

Clifford: So would you say that Brandon’s attraction to Chloe is partly conflicted
by jealousy and envy?

Jason: Yes. I believe Brandon’s hesitations about Chloe and their entire relationship are
not simply because Chloe is this closed off, mystery girl, but rather he is unfairly
blaming her for inadvertently pointing out these shortcomings in himself. The
conflicts are more so things that he is dealing with inwardly; it does not change
the fact that he still really cares for Chloe and wants to pursue her.

Clifford: What aspect of the character you play that’s based off of your

Jason: That’s a good question. The main parallel I found between Brandon and myself was his absolute frustration with Chloe. I had a similar experience with a girl who I was genuinely trying to get to know, but no matter what I said or did I couldn’t figure her out. She was elusive and it made me mad so I gave up. When we were filming the big argument scene with Chloe, I was thinking to myself, “Where have I heard this before?” [Laughs]

Clifford: How’d you get involved with the project?

Jason: It was a fluke! I was hanging out at a friend’s house one night when my actress friend, Wendy Keeling, called me and said she was working on this film and they were still looking to fill the role of Brandon. She explained the story to me, I told her I was interested and the next night I was sitting down with Princeton and Naama in the back of a local coffee shop.

Clifford: I’ve heard that there’s a interesting story behind the first meeting you had with the project’s Director Princeton Holt and the film’s star Namma Kates. Care to elaborate?

Jason: Well I don’t know how interesting it was, but the meeting went great! We all sat around the table for at least an hour, getting to know each other while hashing out ideas for the characters and the story itself. I guess the interesting part about it was the spontaneity of the whole thing; I was cast a night or two before we started filming. I have a bad memory and am probably missing a crucial part of the story, aren’t I? Shoot...

Clifford: What was it like working on a improvisational project like this?

Jason: It was crazy, insane fun. Before this I had never worked on a project that was completely improvised so it scared me a bit, but more than anything I was excited for the challenge. Personally, I felt that this was some of the most raw, authentic acting I think I’ve done or been a part of. Because the whole thing was improvised, the conversations, the arguments and the situations felt so believable because we weren’t restricted by any lines of dialogue. We had the freedom to naturally discover where a scene could go and the effect it would have on the overall story and its characters. I would love to do another film like this one.

Clifford: I can only imagine what the feeling was like to leap into the unknown as you did doing a complete improv feature like this, but in the end it must have been a great
call seeing that you walked away with a new experience learned.

Jason: I agree. It was a little intimidating at first, but it was well worth it. I learned a lot
from an acting standpoint by working on this film and hope to carry some of that
into future projects.

Clifford: Seeing that a lot of improv was done for the project, did you and your Co-stars
have any time for bonding beforehand?

Jason: Because of the last-minute nature of the project we didn’t have much time for “cast bonding”, but the thing was, somehow we didn’t need it. Every actor knew their character so well that when the camera started rolling, everything fell into place. There was such a relaxed feeling on set that it made it easy for us to joke around and discuss our characters with one another before filming a scene. We had all just met each other, but there was a chemistry between the cast members that I believe is evident in the film.

Clifford: What are your thoughts on director Princeton Holt; cool dude or hard ass? Don’t worry he won’t know unless he’s reading this, then I suggest you deny everything! [Laughs]

Jason: Princeton Holt has that crazy ability to be both cool dude AND hard ass. Safe answer? [Laughs] Really though, the man is gifted. We had some good laughs while filming and I loved working with him. I hope we can collaborate on something again soon!

Clifford: In my experience, that pretty much sums it up for me when describing
Holt as a filmmaker. But to that very same respect, it’s what also makes him such
an interesting and uniquely talent in the indie scene, at least, in my opinion. But don’t
worry about the hard ass comment, we’ll just say I forced you to say it! *gives
sinister smile* [Laughs]

Jason: Sounds good to me!

Clifford: This next question is TCWreviews’ signature question so don’t feel
alarmed, you’re not the only one [Laughter]


Clifford: The term ‘For The Sake of Art’ has always been coined in the
entertainment industry for how far an actor/actress would be willing to go for,
well… the sake of art. So my question to you is; How far are you willing to go for
the sake of art in this industry?

Jason: I think about this a lot, actually. I believe that in their pursuit of this insane career, every actor should know ahead of time what the line is that they are or aren’t willing to cross. For me, there are definitely things that I won’t do because there are a set of morals and beliefs that I think are important to stick by and I don’t want to jeopardize who I am as a person and an actor just because someone said that I should give those things up “For The Sake of Art”. I believe that if an actor is not comfortable with doing a certain thing, then there are creative alternatives that can be explored that would still achieve the ultimate goal for the project without sacrificing anything unnecessary.

Clifford: We at TCWreviews announced to some of our readers recently that our
next interviewee was going to be you, and surprisingly got some feedback.
Would you mind answering a question by one of our anonymous readers?

Jason: Not at all, would be happy to!

Clifford: Alright! An anonymous reader asked “What was working with John Schneider like?”

Jason: It was an absolute privilege to work with John Schneider. The man knows his stuff! He's been in the business for so long, he's just a natural at what he does. The scenes I had with him were a lot of fun; he can be a jokester but also knows when it's time to get down to business. If I had the opportunity, I would love to work with him again.

And that concludes my interview with actor Jason G Burkey. Jason and I talked for a bit more and have continued to stay in touch, it was indeed a pleasure sitting down with such a talented individual such as himself, I can tell you now that judging by how well and professionally he handled himself in the interview, the guy has a bright chip on his shoulder and is no doubt going places. I would even dare to say that he is defiantly one to watch out for. Jason can next be seen in “The 10 Commandments of Chloe” starring Namma Kates and Directed by Princeton Holt and is due out this spring (2011). To learn more about Jason visit his official website at, or look him up on his official IMDB page or friend him on Facebook. To learn more about The 10 Commandments of Chloe check out it’s IMDB page or visit, or “Like” the official Facebook page. You can also follow Chloe by checking out her blog at

I’m Streaming Death: Taking a Look At New Webseries By Ron Purtee!

Indie web-projects have quickly become the new “in style” for getting your story told or your idea out there, and why not seeing most of these projects can be made on a micro budget and isn’t restricted by anyone on the medium, had someone say a few years ago that web-entertainment could become a real contender in the entertainment business you’d be cussed out for being a loony.

And with that being said I was greatly impressed with viewing the latest webisode of the new indie web series “The Social Media Massacre: Im Streaming Death” directed by Ron Purtee, and starring Heather Dorff and TCWreviews’ very own, Kelsey Zukowski. The web series is created by Twisted Central Productions and They Call Me Ron Productions. The story follows what can happen when bullying goes too far and things get settled live on the web!

What makes this series even more so startling and disturbing is that the concept behind it is very real and highly possible in our world today with bullying and cyber bullying being a hot topic in the news today. Heather Dorff plays a young woman named Samantha, the typical popular girl in school who wakes up tied to a chare being confounded by her assailant, Angela, played by Kelsey Zukowski, displays a heartless attitude towards her victim as she torments Samantha for her popularity and tortures and belittles her in her final moments before the highly disturbing climax ending which no doubt will have some feeling morbid over what they’ve just witnessed.

The show’s creator Ron Purtee had this to say about the project: The Social Media Massacre began with a short of the same name in late 2010, and grew into a critically acclaimed web anthology! said Purtee in a press release sent out this week. With that being said, the series has already received positive feedback by many movies sites for it’s originality and addictive story telling which is being praised for by such sites as Dread Central, and much more.

Though I’m not the worlds biggest fan for web series, I recognizes when to dish out credit when credit is due. And I’m impressed with how this series is turning out so far and both Heather and Kelsey preformed their parts very well. I am certainly looking forward to the next episode in this new web series as it has a very intriguing premise.

To learn more about the series and view it’s latest episode visit

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Review: Awoken (2010) [Review By Kelsey Zukowski]

Starring: Aaron Mathias, Edward Sheldon, Alex Odell
Written & Directed By: Casey Chan
Grade: D+

Awoken is a short film that follows a mourning husband, Owin (Mathias), who struggles with losing his wife. She’s in a coma and is now getting to the point where her body is giving up and she is slowly dying. Owin has been researching ways to communicate with coma patients while they are under; to try to reach them and guide them back. His research concludes that their brains are still functioning; they’re just living in another world rather than this one. Owin’s wife was a big believer in different realms. If she can’t come to his realm then he just might have to come to hers. With the help of another researcher who lost his wife, Dr. Albert Kane (Sheldon), he tries the impossible, unwilling to let his wife die.

The ending really frustrated me. It is extremely anti-climatic and the audience is left without ever having any type of satisfaction. Other things could have been cut down, but the essential ending is what should have been concentrated on more. We are given no clue as to what happens next in what should have been the climax. Even beyond that, what lied ahead of our character, one way or another, could have made for the most intriguing material. I’m assuming it wasn’t dealt with because they didn’t have the budget to pull off an “other realm” look, which is a shame.

At moments the film’s low budget shows. The effects are extremely cheesy and some of the acting is very over the top. Edward Sheldon was the worst case of this. His acting was atrocious, which distanced me from the film in the heavily emotional scenes he was in. It was just a reminder that none of this was real and he was simply playing a character, and a poor portrayal of one at that. Luckily, our lead, Aaron Mathias, dealt with the material far better. In fact, he’s probably the best thing this film has going for it. I believed his character and felt for him. He showed a good range and helped keep the audience involved when they might have been losing patience with the film.

Awoken is so melodramatic at times it’s hard to take it very seriously. It has an interesting enough premise, but once it finally gets to the more compelling material, it is quickly cut short. The over-the-top tone certainly doesn’t help. Aaron Mathias’ performance helps keep us there, with his character, but by the end of it, even he can’t override the lackluster content and production values.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Review: Death of The Dead (2011) [Reviewed By Clifford Kiyabu]

Directed by: Gary King
Written by: Bo Buckley
Genre: Comedy / Horror
MPAA: Not Rated
Released: 2011
Starring: Christina Rose, Jack Abele, William Lee, Michael Blaustein.

Plot: When a toxic chemical is accidentally released, a zombie outbreak plague a small town, when Wanda , a geeky young girl with her karate trainer finds out that a rival karate dojo has been infect with the virus turning them into Zombie Ninjas it’s up to Wanda and her overly perverted teacher to save the day before the infection spreads beyond containment.

Review: 6/10

The Story is about: Wanda is an uber-nerd with the coordination of a seizure victim. Her karate trainer is an aging pervert with a penchant for ball gags and various sex toys. When a bus from a rival karate school accidentally runs over a couple scientists dumping a toxic chemical down the sewer, the entire class is turned into high flying, flesh eating baddies! As they wreak havoc on the town turning others into zombie ninjas, Wanda and her instructor must save the planet with the help of a magic karate belt.

My Thoughts: A few years ago I had the pleasure of reviewing director Gary King’s début film, New York Lately (2009), from the start of the film I was instantly taken in by how wonderful his directing style was and how well he was able to captured the life and essence of the east cost lifestyle revolving around a group of individuals who‘s lives take hold of the viewer watching from star to finished. I spent the better part of writing my review for that film trying to figure out what I didn‘t like about the film, any shred of a fault would be suffice, but alas there was none great enough. His cinematography was visually captivating and I eagerly awaited to see what would he come up with next. I had heard he worked on various different projects other then his own but it was later on that I learned of a feature he was working called “Death of The Dead”, to which I found very interesting despite my not knowing much about the project other then it being a comedy of some kind (the title was also a dead giveaway to this) so without having any know-how on what to expect out of a title like that seeing that the filmmaker’s résumé paints a different story about him, one that reads “art-house” filmmaker! but I went into watching this film anyway putting aside all that I had originally thought about him and felt pretty optimistic about it too… but sadly if left me with somewhat mixed feelings with how the end result turned out.

I don’t like to pride myself as a parody buff but I am a fairly decent fan of the genre, and like all good fans I enjoy seeking out a good parody film if that makes any sense, but believe me when I say that there are ways to find the perfect parody if you look hard enough, along the journey of finding perfection you will indeed frequently come across the not so desirable ones in the process, you know, the unsavory comedies you wished you hadn‘t seen or for a lack of a better word, un-see. When I watched Death of The Dead which was directed by Gary King and is written by Bo Buckley, my first reaction to witnessing the first act of the film unfold was like watching what I like to call something that somewhat resemble something in line of if Aaron Seltzer and Jason Friedberg got together to write up a script that would be directed by Lloyd Kaufman as a Troma film, then, my boy Death of The Dead would seemingly be the end result (see where I‘m going with this? Though a Kaufman film isn‘t entirely a bad thing however) but I digress, let me elaborate as to why I feel this way. For a parody such as this to work there needs to be a sense of guidelines that keeps stability for the film and to properly set the jokes up in the right motion, of course the manner in which they are executed need to be timed just right as well or else it will face the inevitable fate of falling short. It doesn’t matter how ridiculous the plot is, or how cheesy the jokes are (the 1980 classic Airplane! Was complete proof of this being so), but what is impotent is to know when to go all in on the joke, and sadly it’s the timing where this films fails short on.

Much of the humor is presented of timed in my opinion and feels more juvenal then humorous, and what jokes that are delivered on key aren’t as comedic due to the joke not, as they say ‘going there’ enough, the film obviously wanted to be as explicitly raunchy as possible like any Troma themed film would want (the beginning locker room scene and the ball-nunchucks is evident of this) but didn’t quite take it all the way there, while some of the film’s aspects do in fact retain hard R rated atmospheric themes with a few decent mature attire humor and sexual themes such as adult sex toys and such featured in it, the problem with it not going there as previously mention is that if there was so much themed material featured in the film why wasn‘t some of it used at their disposal? One that easily comes to mind (Pardon my French) why wasn‘t there a dildo sword fight scene featured in it!?!?!. Because of lack of such usefulness of jokes like this makes a lot of the film come off feeling as if there was a lot being held back. leavening some of the film’s more humorous moments feeling as if it was conflicted between a age range war to gain a wider audience vs. going all out. But with that being said the film did in fact have it’s moments in which I managed to let off a chuckle here and there. There’s isn’t much of a solid plotline going for it other then a group of karate teens get infected by a zombie virus of some sort and faces off against a small town nerdy girl who’s sole purpose is to save the town and hopefully the world. Though that isn’t much to go on with you can’t really hate on it for that on the bases it’s a parody film which means a strong storyline isn’t truly warranted (though it still would have been appreciated). The upside to the film really comes at the closing moment of the film when the director himself redeems the film a little by letting the viewers know that he’s in on the joke and not to take Death of The Dead so seriously and to enjoy it for what it is and nothing else. I may not have initially liked the end product that resulted with this film but I respect the filmmaker and writer for doing this.

As for the acting: Well what can I say, the acting here was not one of the film’s strong suits, usually when a film suffers from too many faults you can always breath a sigh of relief over the fact that there’s at least one good aspect, but this is not the case as it was difficult to find any good in the performance either, which is giving me more reason to believe the strong show of ‘Eye candy’ (Which is much appreciated, guys) at the film‘s beginning was placed to masked what lied ahead. Now I don’t mean to be mean here but I’ve seen a better performance deliverance in a daytime soap opera then I did with Death of The Dead which is saying a lot seeing that I don’t care for soap operas one bit. But on the Brightside it’s not all bad. The leading star Christina Rose, gave a fairly decent performance as Wanda, she played the nerdy girl part well and to a degree won me over with the expression on her face as she yanked out a pair of balls off of a Zombie in one scene in the film. Jack Abele and William Lee gave a somewhat humorous performance as the overly perverted Master Sensei and the Evil Sensei. The pair seemed to work well and would have had high praise on my part had it not been for a few bumps on the road with their performance. Sadly though the film’s bad apple falls flat on Michael Blaustein part in my opinion. I tried to like his performance in this seeing that he’s appeared in ‘New York Lately‘, which is a film I greatly enjoyed, but sadly his performance as Donnie felt too forceful and not organic enough for me to get into the character as one of the film’s main antagonists. All in all the cast proved to be disappointing with the exception of a few.

Final Say: Death of the Dead wasn’t all that it was banged up to be in the end, it had it’s moments and could have been a shining example of a great indie parody, but ended with more cons on it’s check list then pros, but in hindsight to everything I said I will say that I respect the filmmakers for at least attempting to making something that had great potential. Which at the end of the day you’ve got to give kudos for at least trying. So for that I say; Nice try guys, but better luck next time.

Copyright 2011
All Rights Reserved

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Rose McGowan To Star In Rosewood Lane!

Jeepers Creepers (2001) was probably one of the most terrifyingly horror films I had seen in the early 2000s. It was because of that film that (’till this day) I shutter at the sound of the song of the same name, which was originally featured in the 1938 classic “Going Places“. why is this so? because director Victor Salva had manage to take something so innocently harmless like a song from the late 30’s and turn it into a modern day horror element which set the tone of the film from then on... It’s sequel on the other hand wasn’t as impressive. But I digress, actress Rose McGowan (Conan the Barbarian, Planet Terror) is set to star in director Victor Salva’s (Jeepers Creepers, Powder) latest film “Rosewood Lane” which is said to be just as nightmarishly or original as his successful as his “Jeepers Creepers” franchise.

The film’s plot will follow McGowan as she plays Doctor Sonny Blake, a radio talk show psychiatrist, when she moves back to her childhood home after her alcoholic father dies. Once back in her old neighborhood she discovers the local paperboy is a frightening and cunning young sociopath that targeted her father and now targets her. When the boy starts calling her show and recites eerie nursery rhymes, an unnerving game of cat-and-mouse begins. When the game escalates, she suddenly finds herself in a terrifying all out war, one that forces her to redefine her ideas of good and evil, and has her fighting to stay alive.

Victor Salva, the director of Jeepers Creepers had this to say about his latest film, “Rosewood Lane has been a pet project of mine for years now and what I have always regarded as one of my most terrifying stories. To see it finally come to life, is wonderful.”

Rosewood Lane is financed by Voltage Pictures and produced by Emmy Award winner Phillip B. Goldfine (True Justice, Driven to Kill). The film will be Executive Produced by Bryan Sexton (Escapee, The Traveler) and Benjamin F. Sacks (True Justice, Born To Raise Hell) under the Hollywood Media Bridge shingle. Don Fauntleroy (Light Speed, Once Upon A time In the Hood) has been tapped as Director of Photography and will also produce.

Phillip B. Goldfine who’s the film’s producer had this to say about the film’s star Rose [McGowan] on performance as the character “Rose (McGowan) fully embodies the lead character (Sonny), and with her strong cult following I can see audiences as they enjoy watching the horrific experiences her character goes through.”

There’s no official word as of yet to when we can expect a release date but we’ll keep you posted as soon as we receive word.

Side Note: It’s nice to see MeGowan making a return on the silver screen post ‘Charmed’ fame, but where the heck is our Red Sonja movie that we were promised!?!?!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Fury's New Sidekick is Smuldering Hot!

I’ve never been a fan of the CBS’s hit show ‘How I Met Your Mother’ mainly because I could not for the life of me understand how Josh Radnor’s character turns into Bob Saget. I mean how old is Radnor, mid 30’s? so how does he transforms into someone sounding like Bob Saget in less then 20 years? Unless he has some voice box replacement done or was in some kind of horrible accident which rendered him to a life of sounding like that voice from America’s Funniest Home videos I can’t see this being possible.

Anywho, remember earlier there was mention of Samuel L. Jackson’s talk about getting a new side kick for the upcoming Avengers movie on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon? Well, it appears that big news regarding that new female side-kick joining Nick Fury’s side has been announced. Deadline revealed that the character in question who will be joining Nick Fury’s side will in fact be Maria Hill, and the actress closing in on landing that role is said to be none other then ‘How I Met Your Mother’ actress Cobie Smulders! Smulders who is said to be the current front runner is not unknown to the Avengers’ director, Joss Whedon. Smulders was at one point seriously considered as a strong candidate to play Wonder Woman when Whedon was attached to the project. And now that Whedon is attached to the upcoming Marvel blockbuster film due out May 4th 2012... Well you get where I'm going with this. Maria Hill is a character that was created by Ultimate Spider-Man creator Brian Michael Bendis, Hill is considered by some in the comic realm as the female equivalence of Nick Fury and is described as a ruthless and tough as nails type of individual who takes crap from no one.

In the comics Hill eventually replaces Fury as the director of S.H.E.L.D. when Fury is forced into hiding. No official word as of yet to what role will the character play in the film other then being by Fury’s side, but one cannot stray from the fact that if Fury sees any hand on action in The Avengers movie then the character surly will follow suit into the action as well.

Side Note: I find it a bit odd that Cobie Smulders was once considered to be the front runner candidate for a high profile franchise like Wonder Woman by Whedon only to wind up being the front runner again for another Whedon project. Coincidence?

First Footage of Captain America: The First Avenger!

Back during the 2010 comic-con director Joe Johnston promised fans that we were going to get a glimpse of America’s original super solder which hinted at the idea of a trailer by year’s end, sadly we were mistaken. But as promised folks, It’s finally here! after countless months of promises by the studios of clips of Capt in action, we’re finally graced with the first official footage of Captain America: The First Avenger, and what better time then any other then airing it during the commercial break of Super Bowl XLV! Though it’s only 30 seconds long and fans have been aching for a full trailer, the footage was more then enough to wet the whistles of some of the industry’s most loyal fans.

Sure it was very brief, but keep in mind to some of the things this 30 seconds showed; first it gave us a glimpse at what to expect out of this film, which I might had doesn’t look too shabby if I may say so, and we get to see how Chris Evans looked in action as the first Avenger himself. And as a bonus if you pause the commercial at just the right moment you’ll get to see what appears to be Hugo Weaving donning the Red Skull face which you can see for yourself by looking at the still below. So all in all it was worth the wait in my opinion.

Side Note: So who’d you cheer on at this year’s Super Bowl? I myself have never been a hardcore sports fan, but I do on occasion catch a game here and there, and I have to say I wasn’t expecting the Packers to take home the trophy this year. But then again I’ve never been a stealers fan either. Here’s hoping to the Cowboys having a better shot at making it to the big game next season.

Friday, February 4, 2011


Who’s the bad mother from a another, who get’s all the bad guys and pleases all the ladies? It sure ain’t shaft, you dig? Since his appearance in 2008’s Iron Man it’s become something of a regular thing that Samuel L. “The Man” Jackson must give us a dose of awesomeness as none other then bad-ass super spy Nick Fury but fan were a little let down when they heard the S.H.E.L.D agent wasn’t going to appear in this summer’s upcoming blockbuster’s THOR and CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER. But now that all seems to be a thing of the past since news about the actor appearing in both films will in fact happen after came from none other then the actor himself who revealed on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon that he will indeed be making cameo’s in both film’s this year.

“In the next month or so, I have to do one day on Thor, and I gotta do another day on Captain America , and in April we start The Avengers — the big deal with everybody. Thor and Captain America are pretty much done, but I haven’t done my part in them yet. I’m just connective tissue for them to join The Avengers.”

But wait, There’s more! He also stated that he will be getting a new female side kick in addiction to Scarlett Johansson reprising her role as Natasha Romanoff AKA The Black Widow and has said that he’s got to do screen testing with a number of actresses "I gotta screen test like five actresses on Friday. They have this new character that’s my sidekick or something, that’s with me all the time." While Jackson didn't exactly reveal any names as to whom these actresses are the Hollywood Reporter reported that actresses Jessica Lucas, Morena Baccarin, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Cobie Smuthers are set to come in and try out for the yet to be named role.

Side Note: Making one of Marvel comic’s greatest iconic super spies even more bad-ass by having the role played by Samuel L. Jackson was probably the smartest and best decision Marvel has done thus far


The interweb is filled with endless debates about the Twilight series and whether or not it‘s any good or total crap, but even more so is the debate over the film’s leading lady Kristen Stewart who is considered by some the cream of the crop while other argue that she isn’t even in the running to be a A-Lister. I shamefully admit that at one point I was a huge fan of miss Stewart and even considered her to be a Oscar worthy actress. But times change and so do people, and sadly for her I later found her acting repetitive and boring. She went from spellbinding to… Eh!

With the New Superman Reboot currently titled “Superman: Man of Steel” in full swing and monumental names like Zack Snyder attached as the film’s director and INCEPTION director Christopher Nolan as the film’s producer, the film is already starting look like a project that stars would be dieing for be a part of. Well apparently K-Stewart doesn’t think so. It was rumored earlier that actress Kristen Stewart was on the very short list of names for the part of Lois Lane but now is reporting that the doe-eyed starlet had a meeting with Snyder about playing the iconic feminist reporter Lois Lane and later love interest to the last son of krypton. But ultimately the meeting was very brief.

Rumor is she turned down the offer due to not wanting to be sucked into another multi-picture franchise just yet and want‘s to focus on doing more “Smaller, independent films.” meanwhile Stewart’s spokeswoman said only that she "did not read for the part", however this is leaving some in the blogging community to believe that she may have shot down the idea of playing Lois Lane due to not wanting to have a 'Superman Returns' style failure on her career (Sure SR was fun watching for the most part, but in all honesty it‘s like going on a cheesecake bender, sure it‘s fun while it lasts but is it worth feeling 10 pounds heavier the next morning?) and there seems to be some questioning this even further seeing that the actress claims to wanting to be focusing on independent films yet seems to be interested in donning the lead role of another big budget film, SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN, which ironically would begin filming around the same time as SUPERMAN: MAN OF STEEL later this summer and would be released in theaters around the same time as the Superman reboot in winter 2012. So there apparently appears to be what would have been a major filming conflict had she chose to go with the Superman reboot seeing that she has a interest in playing Snow White.

Read the full story over at

Side Note: If you ask me I think the studio and Snyder and his team may have dogged a great big bullet on this one, I mean can you really see her playing a energetic female empowering bombshell reporter like Lois Lane!?! Maybe it’s just me, but why does she always look either bored out her mind or incredibly confused in all of her roles?

Extra Side Note: Congrats to actor Henry Cavill for landing the leading role of the Man of steel himself. I’m sure you’ll do great in the title role.


Only a few more months until the release of Marvels THOR followed by the release of CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER. But while we’ve been hearing sooooo much coverage on Kenneth Branagh’s Thor project, not much is known about how well Joe Johnston’s Captain America film will stand in comparison, next to the god of thunder this summer. But now there seems to be an endless supply of news in regards to the first avenger himself. First with news about the first official footage of Chris Evans as Captain America airing this Sunday during the Super bowl, and now brand spanking new stills of the actor in his avenger uniform which graced the cover and pages of Empire Magazine which is out on news stands now! Check out below…

And if that’s not enough to rock your socks off then check out this awesome new poster presented by YAHOO! of Captain America which hints at the avenger’s film!

I don’t know about you but I wasn’t all that excited about this project prier to seeing these photos mainly because I didn’t care for the choice in actor o play cap or the lack of coverage on the project, but now I’m really starting to see this project in a whole new light, and hopefully if all goes well this turn of events will continue even further after the trailer is released this Sunday. Fingers are crossed!

Side Note: I think it’s safe to say that everyone’s in agreement here that we haven’t seen or heard enough about Hugo Weaving playing The Red Skull. Bring on those pics already dammit!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Exclusive Interview With Actress Selene Beretta.

TCWreviews’s Administrator and Editor in chief, Clifford Kiyabu, sits down with actress Selene Beretta for an exclusive interview! Selene Beretta is a young, talented and aspiring actress that will be making headlines in due time. She’s a actress that will captivate moviegoers on their first encounter, but what’s on the minds of many is; Where did she come from? And most importantly, what is about her and the character she play’s on screen in the indie sensation, Maggie Marvel, that has people asking who is Selene Beretta? Well thankfully for you I got a chance to sit down with the starlet in a Q&A season where I ask her the questions her fans want to know and her upcoming film Maggie Marvel (2010).

Clifford: First off I’d like to thank you for taking the time to do this little interview.

Selene: Thanks Clifford! I'm very happy to answer questions about Maggie Marvel.

Clifford: Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Selene: I am a Swiss born, Australian raised, Brooklyn dwelling actress. I trained at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Have been living in NYC for 5 years and love it. I come from a big family and have always been passionate about the arts.

Clifford: So how’d you get into acting?

Selene: Originally I had wanted to be a Director. I looked into Directing training but most of the courses were post-graduate. So I decided a good director should know something about what they are directing and that I should study acting to learn more. I fell in love with it and here we are.

Clifford: I’d be a fool not to ask this question but, what’s your favorite films?

Selene: So so many. To name a few: Delicatessen, Amores Perros, The Proposition, Spirited Away, Bonnie and Clyde, Unforgiven, Blood Sport, Moonstruck and everything in-between. And I just watched Black Swan and Kings Speech, loved them.

Clifford: Prior to doing this interview, I did some research on you and I was quite impressed to learn that you’ve got quite the taste for theater. What plays have you been involved in?

Selene: Everything from Shakespeare to brand new plays. I work with The Amoralists Theatre Company on raucous new works by Derek Ahonen, The Drilling Company doing Shakespeare in the Parking Lot and whatever else I have time for.

Clifford: You starred in Director Dan Brennan’s latest feature Maggie Marvel. What was it like?

Selene: Maggie Marvel was a wild ride! Working on that movie was exciting, inspiring, tiring, thrilling and so much fun!

Clifford: How’d you get involved with the project?

Selene: I saw the breakdown in Backstage and thought I may as well pop over for the audition.

Clifford: So were there any preparations you went through before stepping into the lead role?

Selene: Many. Learning some basic martial arts, some tap dancing, researching cool moves to kill know...the usual.

Clifford: I’ve been told you had to learn tap-dancing for MM?

Selene: Yes, that was hilarious. I have a dance back-ground so thought it would be pretty easy. I was very wrong! Tap dancing is very difficult!!

Clifford: Difficult as it may be you caught on pretty quickly to be able to do it so well on screen, I personally was quite impressed with the performance.

Selene: Thanks Clifford! It helped that Sabrina Brennan was a pro tapper! It's one of my favorite parts of the movie.

Clifford: Are there any other hidden talents you have that we should know about?

Selene: Most of them are in the movie, I've kept a few up my sleeve.

Clifford: Your co-star Diana Brennan played Samantha Marvel, your onscreen daughter. Were there any bonding between the two of you before filming started?

Selene: We talked and laughed and as soon as I met her I knew she was some-one who would not just be great to work with, but that despite the age difference would be a great friend and an inspiration.

Clifford: Is it true your choreographed all the fight scenes?

Selene: Many of them. There was one that was cut that this awesome actress helped with, she had ninja skills and kicked Maggie's butt. We get some basic fight training at Theatre school so I combined that with my newly acquired martial arts basics.

Clifford: What makes Maggie such a complex character to play?

Selene: Justifying killing people while raising a daughter. I learnt that raising a child is more complex and difficult than killing people.

Clifford: Do you think some of those traits will eventually carry over onto Maggie's daughter in time?

Selene: I think the movie addresses this question, and that if Maggie does not make a change soon, her daughter will very likely follow her mom's path.

Clifford: Is it hard having so many scenes with an 11 year old girl?

Selene: I imagine it could be. But when that girl is Diana Brennan it's a dream. She is so talented and fun to be around that I never felt like it was hard work when I had scenes with her.

Clifford: I take it you guys had a blast working together, do you see yourself working with her again in the future?

Selene: Absolutely. I have a feeling Diana will be in this industry for a long time.
Clifford: More importantly, do you see yourself working with Dan Brennan and his team again in the future?

Selene: Dan and Jeanne Brennan are a fantastic team. It felt like family working with them. I could definitely see myself working with them again.

Clifford: You’re a classically trained actress, was this role difficult to approach?

Selene: Classical training is all training. As is true of modern techniques, they can be great for the classics. As an actor you just use bits and pieces from all your experiences to craft each role. Maggie took a bit of everything!

Clifford: How do you prepare as an actress for the very emotional scenes?

Selene: It depends on the context, and then technical details. Sometimes you have time to prepare before shooting starts, other times you have to hit emotional levels in the middle of a scene and then you had better have done your homework.

Clifford: Was it fun to just go out there and be a bad ass killer?

Selene: I would be lying if I said no.

Clifford: What does Selene and Maggie Marvel have in common?

Selene: Are you asking me if I kill people?

Clifford: Well when you put it that way I think that begs the question; do you kill people? [Laughs] What I mean is most actors tend to pour a part of themselves into the character they play, for some it’s personality, while for others it’s emotion, so is there a part of Maggie that you can honestly say that’s you and not the character?

Selene: The accent! Good old Aussie voice. And I would say there are parts of me trickled through-out, in emotion and personality. I don't tend to separate myself too far from the role.

Clifford: I’ve heard you’re fluent in German.

Selene: Swiss-German yes. German almost.

Clifford: Can you say something to for us in Swiss-German?

Selene: "S'chaes chuechli isch im chuchi chaeschtli"

Clifford: Sounds exotic, what did you just say in Swedish-German?

Selene: The cheese cake is in the kitchen cupboard!

Clifford: Is it true you have a flair for special effects make-up and did all of the effects make-up for the film?

Selene: I had some training in Make-up for a martial arts movie in Australia, then you get taught basic bruising and blood in school. There was only a few moments it was needed in Maggie. Mostly we just strangle or poison people.

Clifford: The term ‘For The Sake of Art’ has always been coined in the entertainment industry for how far an actor/actress would be willing to go for, well… the sake of art. So my question to you is; How far are you willing to go for the sake of art in this industry?

Selene: Every-one has their own truths and their own boundaries. I like push up against my own boundaries to find the greatest truth I can in Art. It's a very fun journey to be on.

Clifford: I thank you for taking the time for doing this interview and would like to welcome you back for another Q&A session. We hope to see you more in 2011.

Selene: Thanks Clifford. It was a lot of fun to answer questions about Maggie. I hope everyone enjoys watching the film as much as we enjoyed making it!

And that concludes my interview with actress Selene Beretta. Like all whom I’ve had the utmost pleasure of interviewing, Selene was a lovely interviewee, charming, sophisticated and a true class act. No matter what the question was she remained humbled in every answer. There isn’t any doubt in my mind that we’ll be hearing more about her in the near future. And like the others that I‘ve had a chance to speak with, I’ve invited her back for another interview someday, which I can tell you now will not only be a day to look forward to, but will also be a pleasure. Selene is currently starring in the film Maggie Marvel which now available on DVD and coming soon to download via the web. To find out for about the film visit it’s Official Website. To learn more about Selene Beretta visit her Official Website.