Episode 602: Phil Newsom

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

On this episode, Phil Newsome, producer of Albanian Gangster and Every Time I Die, talks about producing and distributing indie films.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share.

A Halloween Treat from Film Riot

Review by Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

“Write. Shoot. Edit. Repeat.” has been Ryan Connelly’s mantra since starting the Film Riot YouTube channel in 2006. Over the years we’ve seen the channel grow and Connelly’s filmmaking skills along with it. There’s Comes a Knocking is the latest in a long line of short film offerings from the writer/director. 

There Comes a Knocking is the story of Emma, a young woman who is mourning the loss of her lover. She is all alone in a new house, a house he bought for them. 

Stefanie Butler is compelling as Emma. She conveys a lot of emotion given the short run time, and makes us feel for her even before the screaming starts. We are drawn into her world by Connelly’s slow-moving camera, which seems to float omnipotently as we stay with Emma right until the chilling climax when the horror is revealed.

Cinematographer Chase Smith’s use of warm and cold light take the story from a drama about loss to a supernatural thriller perfectly complemented by Daniel James’ foreboding score. 

This film feels like what David F. Sandberg would have made when he was making his horror shorts if he had more money and a crew. It’s easy to see that Connelly and company have come a long way since their DIY days. 
There Comes a Knocking is a proof of concept short for what will hopefully become a feature film, a first for Connelly. After years of helping filmmakers improve their skills, he has sharpened his own and is ready to move to the next level, proof that his practice of writing, shooting, and editing will definitely open doors.

Episode 601: Jenny Paul/Adulting with Jane

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

On this episode, Jenny Paul returns to the program to talk about her latest interactive digital series project, Adulting with Jane, a new digital series with a twist. You can now buy the products in the show as you’re watching it.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share.

Episode 524: Kate Forsatz

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

On this episode actor/filmmaker Kate Forsatz talks about the making of her indie feature Thre3bound. We first met Kate at this year’s Soho International Film Festival.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share.

Episode 523: Alex Emanuel

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

Actor/Producer Alex Emanuel talks with host Jason Godbey about his indie feature, The Incoherents. We first met Alex and the team behind The Incoherents at this year’s Soho International Film Festival.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share.

Episode 522: Justina Adorno

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

Actor Justina Adorno talks with host Jason Godbey about acting and her roles on Grand Hotel and Seven Seconds.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share. You can also send us your questions, and suggestions for topics, and let us know if you’d like to nominate a creator to be a guest on our show.

Jeff Annison, President of Legion M at NYCC 2019

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

By a strange quirk of fate, I was invited to New York Comic Con this year where I met and interviewed the President of Legion M, Jeff Annison. In this excerpt, Jeff talks about Legion M’s latest film, Memory: The Origins of Alien .

Legion M is the world’s first fan owned media company. Recently they were a part of making of indie films like Mandy and Jay and Silent Bob Reboot happen by partnering with filmmakers and fans. It’s a unique company that I’m sure we’ll be hearing from for years to come as they help reshape the world of entertainment.

Special thanks to Jordan Elizabeth Gelber and Terri Pinon for making this interview happen and thanks to Jeff Annison for being so generous with his time. Look out for the full episode, coming soon.

Episode 521: Simone Policano

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

On this episode, actor/producer Simone Policano talks about her latest film, Auggie starring Richard Kind.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share. You can also send us your questions, and suggestions for topics, and let us know if you’d like to nominate a creator to be a guest on our show.

Episode 520: Juan Castilla

Hosted By Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

On this episode experimental filmmaker Juan Castilla talks about his film, Exposed and the importance of experimental film.

No Rest for the Weekend is now live on YouTube, iTunesPocket Casts, Anchor.fmSpotify, and Google Play. Please remember to like, rate, subscribe, and share. You can also send us your questions, and suggestions for topics, and let us know if you’d like to nominate a creator to be a guest on our show.

“Don’t Be Nice. Be Necessary.”

DON’T BE NICE – Official Trailer from Radio Drama Network on Vimeo.

Review by Jason Godbey, Creative Director, Behind the Rabbit Productions

At the IFC Center in the heart of Greenwich Village, New York City, the new documentary Don’t Be Nice is currently playing in limited release. Don’t Be Nice is an unflinching look inside the Bowery Poetry Slam Team as they prepare for the National Poetry Slam competition. 

The film takes place during the summer of 2016 beginning with a night at the Bowery Poetry Club and ending with the National Poetry Slam in Atlanta, GA. At the heart of this movie are five poets; Ashley August, Timothy DuWhite, Joel Francois, Sean MEGA Desvignes, and Noel Quińońes who are guided by their coaches, Jon Sands and Lauren Whitehead as they write and perform hard-hitting poems that will advance them to the next level of competition and hopefully win them national competition honors which will open opportunities for teaching, tours, and book deals for them.

We witness the poets struggle to improve with each rehearsal and with each revision. Their performances are powerful and moving and somehow unpretentious.  Lauren Whitehead stands out as she continually pushes the young performers to dig deeper and make their poems personal and therefore more compelling. If you’re unfamiliar with slam poetry, Don’t Be Nice will open your mind and may leave you thinking “I didn’t know poetry could do all that.”

Director Max Powers and cinematographer Peter Eliot Buntaine take us inside the world of these artists and take us through their arduous and sometimes painful process. We see their breakdowns and breakthroughs as they experience deeply emotional moments. The poets talk about copeing with the death of loved ones, sexual and physical abuse, and the harsh realities of what it’s like to be a person of color in America today.

The writing sessions in the film can almost seem like therapy sessions which in the wrong hands would seem exploitative or like a cheap reality show, but somehow the filmmakers were able to capture these moments in a way that has us feeling as if we’re on this journey of discovery with the poets. We’re right their in the same room being moved by their stories and their work, not looking down at them or putting them in a box. It’s a fine line the film walks masterfully.

Following the screening there was a Q&A with producer Nikhil Melnechuk and editor David Lieberman. When I asked about the process of creating the film and how they were able to show these moments of emotion without devolving into manipulative exploitation, they explained that they conducted 10 test screenings with different audiences. After each screening, they made changes according to audience feedback. In some cases, this could prove to be a recipe for disaster due to the classic “too many cooks in the kitchen” problem and over-correcting, but it helped the film tremendously. They were able to continually improve cut by cut.

Another stand out moment is a performance of a poem by Ashley August staged in a Manhattan subway. Her poem is a satiric take on her own personal issues an anxieties. Her performance is impactful and at times hilarious. The scene could almost be considered a short film within the film as it illustrates how poetry can prove to be cinematic in the right hands.

Each performer is given a moment to shine as we see their work develop from the writers’ room to the stage. We see their courage, their audacity, and the love of their craft. This is a movie about making art for its own sake and the hope that art can make the world a better place. It’s a fantastic film and a must-see. Its title comes from the saying , “Don’t be nice. Be necessary,” and it is just that… necessary.

After a year on the festival circuit, Don’t Be Nice is now in limited release in New York City at the IFC Center until September 26th and opens in Los Angeles on September 27th. It will make its television premiere on October 11th 2019 on Fuse TV.