Saturday, July 14, 2012

Going Behind the Scenes with Actor and Producer Hunter G. Williams: An Interview

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Hunter G. Williams is a Los Angeles based actor. He has had appearances in films like G.S.I.: Ghost Hunter International (2007) and Theft By Deception (2010). He has also appeared on television. He has made appearances on "Spy Tv" (2001), "Who knows the Band?" (2001), and "The Jamie Kennedy Experiment" (2002). He has also played both semi-pro' soccer and poker. And recently, he has created his own film production company titled Busted Knuckle Productions.

Busted Knuckle Productions has at least four projects in development. Fans of horror will certainly be looking forward to the release of the serial killer pic' Cornered. Others might enjoy The Whispering Dead. As well, Hunter is developing a script for Killing Angels. This action thriller will involve the illicit sex trade. And most recently, BKP has started to develop a television series titled "Pyro." Screens will ignite when a pyromaniac is set loose on downtown Los Angeles.

In this interview, Hunter talks about some of his upcoming projects. He also talks a little about the challenges that are faced by production crews, and actors living in the Los Angeles area. Have a listen.

(Michael Ross Allen) Hunter, you played competitive soccer for many years. You actually had an opportunity to play for the Los Angeles Galaxy. What qualities from sport have you brought with you to the film industry?

(Hunter G. Williams) "I have definitely brought my competitive nature, which is important in this industry. Whether you are acting, producing, writing, etc. there is so much competition out there and it is insane. Everyone wants to take the job from you. In sports you always want to be thinking five moves ahead and it is the same with producing. I make back up plans for my back up plans. I also think about my next five films down the line. By the time we are filming I am usually lining up our next project."

(MRA) I understand that your father was a stunt man. How do you think Richard Williams influenced the physical qualities of your acting? Is there any film advice that your father gave you?

(HGW) "He really gave me the willingness to keep going. A lot of actors do not care to risk getting banged up for the picture. But for me, if it makes the scene better, then let's do it. I truly enjoy doing my own stunts and even though a lot of my co-workers and family have asked me to let a stunt man step in for me, I do not plan on that happening anytime soon.

My father was a stunt man for seven years. My mother and my dad met on the set of Little Big Man (1970). I will never forget when I was filming Cornered I cracked three ribs and I busted up my left foot. I was 31 at the time. I went to visit my parents and when I came gimping in, my dad really started harping on me for getting injured doing stunts. When I fired back and said "who are you to lecture me? You were injured all the time doing stunts." His response was "Ya, but I quit when I was twenty five dumbie." My dad is a real smartass. Now, I know where I get it from."

(MRA) I think most of us can relate to having a cheeky dad now and again.

Also, in 2009, you started your own production company titled Busted Knuckle Productions. Can you list some of the partners associated with your brand?

"I have been very lucky with the people I work with. I have become close friends with all of my partners/co-workers. Scott Michael Campbell, who is a fantastic actor/writer/director, is a great friend. We have co-directed two projects together, which we were lucky enough to win three Best Director awards for and three Best Short Film awards. He also wrote and is directing a comedy we are shooting in Montana called The Last Best Place. Chris Hayes, who is another amazing actor, is now producing and writing as well. He co-wrote the pilot we start filming next month titled "Pyro." He and I also co-wrote a comedy "The Road Home," which we will be filming after our pilot on California's central coast is complete. Also, Jeff Stearns is kind of like our mini Mike Ovitz. He's always seeing and thinking of angles none of us would ever consider. Heather Christiansen, Woody Andrews and Daniel Rentas are hands down three of the best people I've had the privilege to work with. We also have our pitbull Marion Brooks. He is our company lawyer and he handles all of our legal, contracts, etc. I consider myself very blessed to have such a great team."

(MRA) Can you elaborate on Busted Knuckle Productions a little more. How is Busted Knuckle Productions and your vision different from the many other production companies based in Los Angeles?

(HGW) "A lot of companies and people in this town just want to call themselves filmmakers. They just want their IMDB credits etc., so they can try and make people think they are big shots. They do not really care about what they make as long as they are perceived as filmmakers. Then, you have the ones that will make anything just to earn a buck and they do not care about the quality.

I want Busted Knuckle Productions to be known for the quality of our films. Everything we have done up to now was just part of a chess game and we needed to do these films to get credibility. Every little move has been moving us towards the bigger picture. I can't wait to say Checkmate!"

(MRA) Now, let us talk a little bit about where BKP is going. Currently, you have three films and one television series in development through your brand. And, fans have been asking me a lot about The Whispering Dead. This is a paranormal investigation styled thriller starring Chris Hayes, Jeff Stearns and Becka Adams. What were some of the challenges you faced in filming this production? This is a ghost story in effect. So, were there any strange events that occurred on set?

(HGW) "We definitely have a lot going on and luckily we are able to handle it. On any given day we are dealing with agencies making offers for use of our talent. We get offers on multiple projects. We are currently handling post-production on our two features that have just wrapped up. We are also doing re-writes, location scouting, and everything in between. The Whispering Dead was the eleventh film I had produced and luckily there were not many challenges. Everything went very smoothly which was a breath of fresh air after all the calamities involved with Cornered.
(MRA) Speaking of Cornered, this film experienced some delays in
production. You actually had to re-film some of the scenes. Are you proud of how the film eventually came out?

(HGW) "Yes, I am very happy with the way everything has turned out. We could of thrown in the towel and just settled for what we had, but we didn't. I knew our first feature had to be strong. A lot of producers and directors make a film and it never sees the light of day. Or, they just make their money back. Cornered is going to be distributed worldwide and by the grace of God, ti will actually show us a bit of a profit. We saw it through and I am very proud of the way it has turned out."

(MRA) "I know that you are excited about your upcoming series "Pyro," but I want to stick with Cornered for a bit. Can you tease horror fans with something from the film?

(HGW) "Serial killers, suspense, shootouts, explosions, a strong male lead and lots of female characters. There will be great action scenes and a very talented cast. What more can you ask for?"

(MRA) I cannot wait to see it. Now, you recently talked with me about "Pyro." This is a potential television series that deals with a pyromaniac and a volunteer firefighter. The firefighter has fire starting tendencies of his own. You are scouting a pilot as we speak. What influenced you to develop this project?

(HGW) "Chris Hayes actually approached me about this one. He was pretty excited about it and he asked if I would read the script. I did and I was hooked immediately. The easiest way to describe it is: "Dexter" with Fire. I then met with the creator Justin Bowman and his partner Zack Kamen. They asked me to come on as producer and they wanted production handled through my company. After I agreed, I told them there is no one that could bring the lead character Tyler to life more than Scott Michael Campbell. So, I called him and told him he was doing it. I did not really give him a choice. After he read the script, he was very excited like the rest of us.

We begin shooting August 12th and it is going to be one of the more difficult first days I have ever done. There will be three different units covering three different parades. Between the permits and everything else, it has taken a lot of effort and coordination to set it all up."

(MRA) I wanted to give you the last word on 2012 and BKP. What can fans of film and television expect from you and your company through the rest of this year?

(HGW) "We have our first two feature scheduled to release at the end of the year. The Whispering Dead is going to blow people away and the action and suspense of Cornered will keep people on the edge of their seats. I think people will really be into "Pyro" and they will want to see where the season and story go. This show is especially targeted for fans of shows like "Dexter" or "Rescue Me."

For the lovers of comedy we have The Road Home and The Last Best Place coming up. Both productions already have some major talent on board. At the end of the year we will be starting production on our explosive action thriller Killing Angels, which deals with revenge and the shady underworld of human trafficking."

(MRA) Thanks Hunter for talking about some of the issues that develop behind the scenes. You gave me and readers some insight in how productions are created and the challenges therein. Good luck on everything for this year!

More on Busted Knuckle Productions here:

Busted Knuckle Productions' Webpage

Visit the fan page for Cornered here:

Cornered on Facebook

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