Two miles into the earth, nine Appalachian miners struggle to survive after give after a methane explosion leaves them trapped with only one hour of oxygen.
Here is the synopsis to Mr. Edward Mensore's intensifying film Mine 9:
Mining country in Appalachia has been declared The Devil's Playground. A close-knit group of veteran miners, all friends and family, commence what would be a normal day's work--except today a rookie, the son of one of our veterans and the god-son of the Section Leader, joins them, 18 year-old Ryan.
With ever-growing safety concerns at the mine, Zeke (Section Leader and long time coal mining veteran), struggles with the correct course of action, weighing on one hand the safety of his men, and on the other, the need to earn a steady wage in an economically depressed region.
Today, however,fate takes matters into its own hands when a huge methane explosion rips through the mine. Smoke engulfs the men, forcing them to rely on nothing more than brains, brawn and faulty self-rescuers(oxygen tanks that afford them one hour of air).
Mine 9 is the story of the struggle for survival against all odds; men trapped in hell as the result of exploitation, greed and circumstance.
1. If you had to describe yourself using three words, it would be…?
Intense, loving, conflicted
2. What is the genesis of your movie Mine 9?
I grew up in West Virginia, which is coal mine country. I took elements of a handful of coal mining accidents that happened during my youth and weaved them into one story.
3. What was your writing habit when you wrote Mine 9?
I write everyday, so it was a routine. Writing the script was fast, probably three months. The idea was concise and well researched ahead of time. It helped to write a long treatment before beginning the script.
4. What research did you do when writing Mine 9?
Extensive research on coal mine explosions, coal mine operations, and mine rescue. It is very technical. I had to find a coal mine expert to help me lay out the story, attempting to keep it realistic. Even with that assistance, it was like learning a new language.
5. Do you ever get writer’s block when writing Mine 9? What do you do to get back on track?
I never got writers block during the creative writing aspects. I did get writers block/flustered from the challenging technical aspects, when the coal mine expert would tell me what made sense, did not make sense, and why. Simplicity always got me back on track. Overthinking something is easy to do and it doesn't seem to help much.
6. What is the biggest surprise that you experienced during or after making Mine 9?
No matter how hard you work on something, you might not ever sell it for the dollar amount that it is worth to you.
7. Did you ever listen to music while writing?
Absolutely! Nimrod Workman. Appalachian ballad singer.
8. What piece of advice do you have for screenwriters starting out?
Keep your locations contained with minimal characters. After you complete the first draft of any script, start cutting characters and locations. If there are four people talking and they all sound similar, condense the conversation to two people. You will start to see the characters come alive.
9. What’s the best advice you have ever received about writing?
The script is never finished. Writing is the only time that you get to make changes for free. Do it now, before you get on set.
10. What was the last great film you saw? What was the last great book you read?
The last great movie was The Rider, by Chloe Zhao.
The last great book was, Can't Hurt Me, by David Goggins.
11. In one word how would you sum up mine 9?
12. What do you love about directing in general?
Getting to be a fan of actors who make the words on the page come alive with greater meaning than I ever imagined.
13. What was your reaction when you first watched the trailer of Mine 9?
I got excited, because I knew that it worked.
14. If a self-published author is seeking a screenwriter, how would one get you to read his or her story to see if it would make a compelling movie?
Just contact me. I have helped two self-publishing authors turn their novels into screenplays.
15. What would it take for you personally to be interested in translating a self-published story into a screenplay?
A solid paycheck with the understanding that it takes time.
16. What book (or movie) had the most influence in your life?
Spike Lee's, Do The Right Thing, made me want to create art.
17. If you could be a “fly on the wall” anywhere at any time, where would you like to be?
On the set of Magnolia with Paul Thomas Anderson.
18. Last question, if a genie granted you three wishes, what would they be? (can’t ask for more wishes)
The very best filmmaker, husband, and father that I strive to be.
I really like to thank Mr. Edward Mensore for this interview and I urge those reading this to check out Mine 9. To know more about the film or take a sneak peek of the movie stills or behind the scene photo click on the website:www.mine9movie.com Thank you for reading this and I hope you have a great day.
Synopsis to the nail-biting thriller titled American Hangman:
A kidnapping, broadcast live on social media, turns into the trail of a judge who presided over a botched criminal case. This time, however, the audience gets to play judge and jury, deciding if the judge himself gets to love or die.
Directed and written by Mr. Wilson Coneybeare, his latest feature has a unique approach to police drama as well as an intense, worthwhile thriller that shouldn't be miss. Donald Sutherland's performance in this movie is a delight to witness. Moreover, his superb and potent acting as Judge Straight is among his finest work yet. So, go ahead and get to know this great director/screenwriter who made American Hangman, and afterward watch the film.
1. If you had to describe American Hangman using three words, it would be…
That is actually a very tough question. The publicity answer – the thing that describes the movie succinctly and you could put on a poster -- is “social justice thriller”, which is to some degree what the movie is. But the first thing that comes to my mind when you ask the question is “justice gone nuts”, which was certainly the emotional basis of the story and where it came from.
2. What is the genesis of American Hangman?
I started fooling around with the story in 2010. That’s when we were all starting to not just hear but see – on the news --cops killing civilians who posed no serious threat to them, predominately in black communities in the USA, and the rise of what I would call the ‘occupying military force’ look of local police department – cops tricked out in riot gear, and acting like they’re on TV. That’s a theme in the film. I remember being particularly horrified by how the Toronto police department handled itself during the G-20 summit that year. What intrigued me was that we were seeing all this for the first time through the lens of social media. So I began to think about taking it to what I thought was the next level: justice live on social media, administered by the public. So I imagined a story about a judge being kidnapped and put on trial live, with the public able to vote as judge and jury. I wanted to say something about the American justice system, but also how our view of what’s acceptable and what’s not is changing. Outrage is a great place from which to start writing pretty much anything, you know. It usually helps your subconscious dream up what you need.
3. What research did you do when writing American Hangman?
I had to delve into three areas that I didn’t particularly want to research: the nature of the criminal mind, the nature of modern policing, and the nuts and bolts of death penalty cases. None of this is really cozy bedtime reading. I had always admired Stephen Williams’ terrific book about the Paul Bernado case, “Invisible Darkness” (at one point I was hired to do the screenplay), and I found myself drawing a lot from there, especially his psychological insights. I also studied the Paul Morin case in Ontario, which I turned on its ear because Morin turned out to be innocent, which is not the case in my film. These elements were key to me building the story. Then I had to delve into botched death penalty cases – which Morin’s would have been had he faced the absurdity of the death penalty – which are prevalent since the introduction of DNA evidence. That material is all over the net. The most surprising material involved modern policing methods. The numbers quoted in the movie are real: there is a crisis when it comes to modern police work, in the United States in partiuclar. Part of that is because they’re not given the real resources they need, part of it is because of political pressure and expectations, and part of it is just crappy police work.
4. What kind of routines do you tend to have when writing? How does a typical day (for you) begin?
This is why I love what you’re doing: you talk about the mechanics of writing, which is what I was always interested in as a young person trying to become a writer. Inspiration and the muse are lovely ideas, but it’s more interesting to hear the meat and potatoes of the writing life.
Like almost everyone, I believe you do your best work in the morning and you have to work every day. I am a “pages per day” guy, and you simply have to get your pages done per day no matter what or you aren’t allowed to get on with life. In my case, on a screenplay, I do seven pages a day. So I’m up early, coffee, eat breakfast while at the desk, and start work. I usually write in longhand, and I did on “American Hangman.” I don’t review what I did yesterday. I just keep going. If I’m done early, I’m a hero. If I have to slog it out, then slog I must. I write a lot of drafts and do an excessive amount of revision. I see writing as a work-a-day thing, a disciplined profession. I admire people who feel the same way.
5. Could you give any interesting, fun fact about your experience working with Mr. Donald Sutherland and any other actors in American Hangman?
Donald is a very dedicated professional. It’s about craft and art with him, and that is a gift to any writer or director. I didn’t know him when I sent the script to him, and was delighted when he responded so positively to the material and agreed to come aboard… and believe me, he hung in there a long time. We had some setbacks in financing and other areas, but Donald stayed in there for more than a year, with everyone working around complex schedules.
Here’s the thing about working with Donald. The man was in “The Dirty Dozen.” He was in “Mash.” He was in “Kelly’s Heroes”, “Klute”, and “Ordinary People” – which I feel was his best performance ever. Should have got the Oscar. My point is, that’s a lot of history. In comparison, I know nothing. I have zero experience. So all you can do is collaborate with him, let him go where he wants to go, and course correct if something feels off – but that’s seldom going to happen. He knows exactly what he’s doing.
What I didn’t expect from Donald is that the man knows more jokes than any person I’ve ever met. I mean it. And I mean hard-to-remember “two nuns walks into a bar” jokes. An amazing memory, and fortunately many of them are really ribald. It’s this charming side of the man that I didn’t expect, and oftentimes he’d offer one up between takes, perhaps to relieve the tension because much of what we were doing was absolutely depressing and grim and exceedingly dark material.
I love the cast of American Hangman, but certainly the hardest part of the film was what we called “the basement room” section, which is more than half of the story. There are three actors involved who were simply stuck with one another: Vincent Kartheiser, Paul Braunstein, and Donald Sutherland. For that reason, we rehearsed that section as a stage play, but when we got on the set, the thrill for me was to see how respectful the actors were of each other. They came from varied backgrounds, but they handled each other with total professional and regard. They wouldn’t even do coverage without the other actor being present. There is no cheating in the film.
Vincent Kartheiser is a very intense actor who really takes over the part from the writer and the director, which is what a great actor often does. I thought of Montgomery Clift or Brando or someone of that ilk. He was really in that character. But Vinnie is also remarkably technically proficient, so he knows how to get what he needs to get. I have also never seen an actor more ready to go. “Let’s go! Let’s shoot!” That’s Vincent. And he nailed the character.
6. What is your favorite line from American Hangman?
“You get as close as you can.” I can’t explain it, and it’s certainly not the line I thought I would love when we started the movie, but Donald made that moment happen. It’s toward the end of the movie. Amazing performance. And in doing what he did, he summed up the unresolved contradictions within the script -- which were purposeful – simply by the power of performance.
7. What director or screenwriter or film influenced American Hangman?
I failed miserably, but one of my favorite American directors of all-time is Sidney Lumet. Hands down. And I wanted to make a quasi Sidney Lumet movie… alas, at 1/100th of a Sidney Lumet budget! (laughing) My favorite screenwriter is Paddy Chayefsky – they collaborated on “Network”, obviously – but really during “American Hangman” my head was with the 1950’s TV writers I admire: Reginald Rose, Horton Foote, Abby Man, Robert Alan Aurther, Tad Mosel, and others. I wanted the movie to have that feel. The height of that era, other than Chayefesky, woulld be Rose’s “12 Angry Men” (again, Lumet) and “Judgment at Nuremburg” by Abby Mann. They were both plays for live TV. Philco Goodyear, I think, Studio One, or Playhouse 90.
8. What’s your favorite childhood memory about developing your craft?
If we’re talking screenwriting, then it’s reading William Goldman, which led me to a strange activity: I typed one of his screenplays out. On a typewriter. I wanted to physically see what it looked like, to get a sense of where and when things happened on the page. An extremely useful exercise.
If it’s writing in general, the best childhood memory is wasting perfectly beautiful summer days lying around in the basement of our house reading paperback novels one after the other. Best way to learn your craft.
9. If a self-published author is seeking a screenwriter, how would one get you to read his or her story to see if it would make a compelling movie?
I believe the entire future of writing is self-publishing, by the way. And I like the idea of adapting other people’s work. So put the two together. I guess someone could send me a twitter or email me with a one sentence pitch. They can send it to Stirling Bridge Entertainment. If a story can’t go into one sentence, it probably can’t be turned into a movie.
10. What would it take for you personally to be interested in translating a self-published story into a screenplay and perhaps directing it?
11. What was the last great film you saw? What was the last great book you read?
My view is that there are far more good movies out there than people think, but few great ones. Great is a high wall. This probably isn’t right, and I’m sure I’m not being fair to so many good films, but I remember a few years ago simply being slack-jawed when I saw Suzanne Bier’s “In a Better World.” I was knocked out. That’s a great movie. More recently, “Leave No Trace” impressed me. On the good scale, I loved the “Wreck it Ralph” sequel, thought “Vice” terrific and sat like an idiot enjoying every second of “Mary Poppins Returns.” I thought Thomas Vinterberg’s last movie terrific.
As for books, I truly admired “Lincoln in the Bardo”, but also just finished Maya Jasanoff’s book about Joseph Conrad, the new Flavia De Luce novel, loved it as usual, and John Grisham’s new book “The Reckoning” and a great first novel, C.J. Tudor’s “The Chalk Man.” I reread Dickens’ “American Notes” because I’m losing my mind with what’s going on in the country at the moment, and for comfort reread “Anna Karenina.” I think everyone ought to read “The New Deal” by Michael Hiltzik, a terrific achievement. In fiction, I likes story.
12. If you have your own talk show, who would your first three guests be (besides me, of course)?
If I don’t care about ratings? Vladimir Putin, and I promise him we will only talk Russian history. Think about that. “Vlad, what are your thoughts on Ivan the Terrible?” Think what the answer would tell us. My next guest would be Giles Martin, who remixed “The White Album” and listened to all the outtakes. I need to know everything he knows. Then I want to talk to Guillermo Del Torro but only on the subject of Universal monster movies of the 1930’s.
13. What piece of advice do you have for aspiring filmmaker starting out?
Don’t watch other movies. Live life and make movies based on that. We’re done with movies based on other movies.
14. If you had the ability to do two major tasks at the same time, what would they be?
Sing opera and bake pastries like a master French baker.
15. If you were a genie, what wish would you absolutely not grant?
I would grant nothing involving money, would grant everything involving sex.
16. Last question, if you were to create a slogan for your life, what would it be?
“Stop counting things.”
After reading this interview I hope you really go see this movie. I would like to thank Mr. Coneybeare for this excellent interview. You can check American Hangman at Amazon.com, iTunes, and Vudu now! Finally I really want to thank you for vising my blog. As always come again to read more posts and blog interviews. Have a wonderful day and stay blessed.
I had the fortunate pleasure to interview both directors and screenwriters of Hospitality, Mr. David Guglielmo and Mr. Nick Chakwin. Both of them will express about their experiences with Hospitality and a bit about themselves.This is their second collaboration as their first writing/directing debut was the crime thriller No Way to Live. So, take this time to get to know the duo and why you should seek out their latest feature film.
1. How did you come up with Hospitality?
David: Hey Mike, I have Nick here with me so we'll be answering these together. For me it starts with character. We had the idea of Donna a while ago -- her backstory-- and Jimmy and someone coming by that might be his dad, etc, and that idea just sat for a while, percolating, until one day it was ready to be written. Once words hit the page it happened very fluidly. Didn't have to force it at all.
Nick: We had some of the ideas for Hospitality kicking around for years. Stephen King calls them “cups without handles”. They are the old ideas that never quite get figured out. We write them down and keep those notebooks close because you never know when an old idea will become relevant again. Hospitality started by combining two of those old ideas and then as David said, after that it just clicked.
2. What is your writing habit?
David: I like writing in the morning. I find I write best when I do a little every day, even if it's just going over what I've written.
Nick: I like morning as well. Ideally before looking at my phone or the news. There is also another sweet spot after dinner, which doesn’t always work, but when it does I can get another hour or two in then.
3. What research did you do when writing Hospitality?
David: It's entirely fictional, so I don't think anything...
Nick: That’s not entirely true, I remember we did a little bit of research about the flooring business once we figured out that the Boss was from that world and that he was going to talk about it.
David: Sure. Sure.
4. List three adjectives to describe your directing/writing partner Mr. Nick Chakwin?
David: He's right here so I'll let him describe himself.
Nick: Let’s see… Smart, Brilliant, and Genius
David: Joking aside I found a really great partner in Nick. It's a tough thing that 99 times out of 100 does not work, but we are best friends, have a great short-hand, and tend to complement eachother's personalities nicely. We also like all the same stuff, so that helps a lot. We rarely disagree on movies.
5. Did you know how Hospitality would end or did it come to you while writing the story?
David: I never know how the stories are going to end. That's the fun!
Nick: What David said. Even if we have an idea of where it’s going, it always changes. I think we both feel that if you’re dead set on how your script will end, then you limit it in a way when you make sure it goes that way. Instead we like to let the script tell us where it wants to go.
6. Could you give an interesting, fun fact about your experience working with Emmanuelle Chriqui, Jim Beaver, JR Bourne or any other actors in Hospitality?
David: Sure. Let's see...Jim Beaver is a film historian. He knows as much as anybody about film, so we really clicked in that regard. I think Emmanuelle's favorite movie is OUT OF THE PAST, which is cool and appropriate to this film, so we got her the poster as a wrap gift. We wrote the role for Sam Trammell. I think it's pretty special that we ended up with him.
Nick: JR is an Aries. Conner’s favorite drink is milk, and his favorite actor is Katherine Heigl
7.What is your favorite line from Hospitality?
David: I like when Cam says "People go missing all the time", and then Zane says "they do, don't they" to which Cam replies "I think so..." That always gets a laugh.
Nick: My favorite line from the script is from a scene that we cut from the movie! But I’ll say this, there is a line that Jimmy says “Do I have to clean it up?” It’s not a stand out line or anything, but I love it because it plays differently depending on how you watch the movie. A friend of ours watched the movie alone at home and he said that line was very sad, and then when he saw the movie in a theater with a crowd, he and others laughed at it. So that’s kind of cool. I like the idea that a movie can give you different reactions based on where you’re coming from when you watch it. I know I’ve had that experience with movies as well.
8. Which filmmakers do you admire or inspired your work?
David: I watched a good amount of Roman Polanski before shooting this one, because he's so good with confined spaces, and he's such a stylist but in a smart, subtle way that I thought would be appropriate to this film. My list of favorite directors can go on and on. Lately I've been very into Almodovar.
Nick: My wife just bought me the new Ingmar Bergman box set from Criterion that has something like 40 of his movies, so I’m currently neck-deep in that world and loving it. His productivity alone is such an inspiration. I think he made a movie a year for most of his career. Sometimes two a year.
9.What do you love about directing in general?
David: I love it all. I love thinking visually. I love working with the actors. Just seeing it all come to life is such a joy. Making those unique idiosyncratic decisions that you know someone else wouldn't think to do. Getting specific with production design or curating what music to play and when. Those are the choices that aren't necessarily on the page and they put your stamp on it. Every day I want to surprise myself, or elevate it in a certain way that keeps people on their toes.
Nick: I love every part of the filmmaking process, and directing allows me to be a part of each step along the way. I love it because I don’t think I’ll ever run out of ways to improve. I think it’s a job that attracts those who thrive on challenge, chaos, and uncertainty. But you also get rewarded with such great surprises in the form of seeing the images for the first time after they were just words on a page, seeing magic human chemistry when you put certain actors in a scene together. I love that I am able to bend my little corner of the universe and create an offering of art and entertainment.
10.What were your hobbies as a kid? What are your hobbies now?
David: Reading and watching movies. Listening to music. Going to museums. Art art art. That's what I live for.
Nick: I got a camcorder when I was young, and I loved filming little videos with my friends. That’s where it all started for me, shooting all day with friends, and then taking the footage home and editing it into something I could show them. Now for fun I shoot a lot of film photography. I’m not serious about it really, but it’s so fun and it keeps me working on compositions and learning more about lighting. Plus, there’s nothing like getting a roll of film back.
11.Which novel/novella/short story have you read that you would like to see a film adaptation?
David: I love a book called VIOLENT SATURDAY which was made into a movie with Lee Marvin (which I've never seen). I think we'd do a really great job with that material.
Nick: I’m going second David’s answer. We would knock that one out of the park! There is also a suspense novel called SACRIFICE by John Farris that I think would make a good movie.
12. If a self-published author is seeking a screenwriter, how would one get you to read his or her story to see if it would make a compelling movie?
David: We're not hard to find. If it's a good pitch and the person seems to get what we do, I'd take a look. Nick is known for being a good reader. He'll read people's stuff for notes, etc, whereas it takes me a bit longer, but I try! I think the most important thing is the sense that they're coming to us for a specific reason. They're not sending 100 emails, but they singled out our work because it has qualities they want to see in theirs.
Nick: We’re pretty good about answering emails. Send the email -- that's a good place to start.
13. What would it take for you personally to be interested in translating a self-published story into a screenplay?
David: It would just have to speak to us. I prefer to write my own material, but you never know. It could end up being VIOLENT SATURDAY.
Nick: I think as directors, David and I are very conscious about our voice, and making sure the movies we make feel like ONLY we could make them. That doesn’t mean that we aren’t open to looking at existing material, but as David said, the material has to speak to us in a way where we believe that WE are the best people to bring it to the screen.
14.Which fictional character (besides yours) would you like to sit down and chat with?
David: I don't know if I'd want to chat with any of ours! I really like the guys in Rio Bravo. Chance, Dude, Stumpy, etc. That movie comforts me. I put it on when I'm feeling down and it lifts me right up.
Nick: This is such a hard one! I think at my dinner party I’d have to invite The Dude (from Big Lebowski... different than David's "Dude” played by Dean Martin), Willy Wonka (Wilder duh), Lucy Ricardo, Hermione, and maybe Norman Bates and Hannibal Lecter to spice it up.
15. What can you talk about for hours?
David: Movies and books, but only ones I like. I don't like to talk about bad ones.
Nick: A movie I loved, a place I loved visiting, a person I love
16. If you had to be a teacher of something, what would you teach?
David: Film History, but I'd make it genre specific. History of the western or history of noir. Something like that. Lately I'm into pre-code stuff, and I think that would make a great class.
Nick: In film school at SVA we had production class each year that worked sort of like a home base. You’d check in with your teacher about whichever step of the process you were on with your current project, so it was a little bit of everything. Developing ideas, writing, shooting and then editing. I think I’d enjoy something like that. Also I would make my students call me “teach”.
17. Last question, what childish thing do you still do as an adult?
David: I love cartoons.
Nick: I still count using my fingers! Oh well.
All in all, i'm very honored to have both of them (not just one of them) answer my blog questions. Major thanks to David Guglielmo for making this possible. It was quite fun as well as you can tell by reading their answers. You guys should undoubtedly see watch Hospitality. It's now available on VOD that includes Amazon, Vimeo, and iTunes. Thank you for visiting my blog and reading another amazing interview. Take care and I hope you come here again.
Based on the Matthew Logelin's memoir, Mr. Kevin Hart is planning to star in the film adaptation. The title, until further notice, will be called fatherhood instead of the book 's title.
Here is a quote from Mr. Kevin Hart, brought to you by The Hollywood Reporter:“When I started reading this script, I was immediately touched and brought to tears,” says Hart. “At HartBeat, we seek to provide the audience with stories that evoke true emotions and this story does just that. Our hope is to bring honor to the Logelin family, and we are thrilled to be working with Sony, Paul, Temple Hill and Free Association on such an incredible project.”
The memoir is about a widower who is raising his daughter all on his own. The screenwriter for this project will be Dana Stevens. Producing the film will be David Beaubaire, Peter Kiernan, John Cheng and Kevin Hart.
Source material: The Hollywood Reporter
Sarah Michelle Geller, star of the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer, is going to star in TV adaptation of Sometimes I Lie. She will also executive produce the TV project.
Amber Reynolds(Sarah Michelle Geller) is a lady who found herself in a hospital. She can't move, speak or even open her eyes. However, she can hear people around her. Amber doesn't recall how she got in this state but suspect her husband had something to do with her unusual situation.
Sometime I lie is a debut novel that was written by a former BBC journalist Alice Feeney. The bestselling novel was released in March 2017 and was published in over twenty countries. As for the screenwriter, Robin Swicord would take on that project. The screenwriter for this TV project will be Robin Swicord. She has adapted a couple of short stories (Wakefield and The Curious Case of Benjamin Buttons) and novels( Little Women, Matilda, Memoirs of a Geisha, and The Jane Austen Book Club) into films.
source material: deadline
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