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Director Troy Duffy Discusses His Vision of the ‘Boondock Saints’ TV Series

Director Troy Duffy Discusses His Vision of the ‘Boondock Saints’ TV Series

troy-duffy-2016

‘Boondocks Saints’ creator/director Troy Duffy recently updated sat down to answer some fan questions about his beloved franchise. During the session he offered up some information on a potential ‘Boondocks Saints’ prequel, in the form of a television series, might lead. Duffy describes the series as a “rebooted origin story.”

Check out the video to hear more about his vision. You can find all of the fan Q&A session on the official Facebook page for Boondocks Saints, located at www.facebook.com/boondocksaintsfans/.

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BREAKING THE MOLD: Director Vinod Chopra On His New Film ‘Broken Horses’

BREAKING THE MOLD: Director Vinod Chopra On His New Film ‘Broken Horses’

broken-horses-feature-2015

Hollywood is no stranger to foreign filmmakers leaving their marks in the world of American cinema and Academy Award nominee Vinod Chopra is the latest filmmaker to do just that!  An acclaimed Bollywood director, Chopra has now set his sights on American cinema. While he may not be a household name in The States, this breakout film has certainly put him on the radar. It is also important to note, Chopra is the first Bollywood director in history to write, direct, and produce a mainstream Hollywood film. Set in the shadows of the US-Mexico border gang wars, ‘Broken Horses’ is a gritty, epic thriller about the bonds of brotherhood, the laws of loyalty, and the futility of violence. Having left town as a child after the death of his father, young music prodigy, Jacob Heckum (Anton Yelchin), returns to his desolate hometown after years only to discover that Buddy (Chris Marquette), the child-like brother he left behind now works for a drug gang. The gang’s ruthless leader has twisted his simple mind and manipulated him into a killer… a surrogate son who blindly does as he is told. He is unable to convince Buddy to leave his new fraternity. Drowned in guilt for having abandoned him, Jacob quickly realizes the only way to save Buddy is from the inside out. The film is a bold introduction from this accomplished director. James Cameron and Alfonso Cuaron have supported Vinod calling his film “an artistic triumph” and “overwhelming” respectively. Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Vinod Chopra as her visited New York City to promote the film. In the interview he discusses his early years, his influences, breathing life into ‘Broken Horses to life and what the future might hold for him in cinema.

Director Vidhu Vinod Chopra

Director Vidhu Vinod Chopra

What made you pursue a career in filmmaking? Was there something that really intrigued you early on in your life about film?

You know, I come from a very small town and I learned about everything when I was about 16 years old. I can tell you, I used to look at those big posters at the small cinema hall in the town called The Palladium. I just wanted my name on those posters! [laughs] It was as simple as that! It was a complete childhood dream or fantasy that one day my name would be on those posters. I let that fantasy overrule all of my rational senses! I just followed my fantasy and here I am talking to you in Hollywood!

Who were some of your influences as a filmmaker, both as a boy and today?

This is a very complicated kind of a thing. When I was in Kashmir, all I could see were Hindi movies. At that time, there were filmmakers from India like Guru Dutt, Bimal Roy and Mehboob Khan. These were the people who influenced me. Then when I went to The Film Institute, I suddenly saw Orson Welles, Federico Fellini and Francois Truffaut and I was blown away! I didn’t even know cinema like that existed. It has been a crazy influence beginning with filmmakers only from India, because that was all I saw, and then suddenly realizing a whole new world exists! Then I became influenced by this new world. I think that is why my work in cinema has a strange originality. It is really from two different worlds in a way.

Filmmaking is not an easy profession. What has keep you inspired through the years?

'Broken Horses'

‘Broken Horses’

It really boils down to it being a story I want to tell or not tell. For me, because cinema has been a childhood passion, I will never make a movie that I don’t believe in. Now, after “Broken Horses,” I have some really big studios talking to me about what might be my next movie but I am not going to pick up a script that they give me and say, “Make this in India because it will make a billion dollars.” I don’t care. I have made enough money in my life and I have never made a movie that I don’t believe in and I will not do it even now. What really pushes me is the script and a story that I want to tell! If I can in some way touch people’s lives or in “Broken Horses” bring families together and make brothers love each other. If I can convey that, I will be very, very happy. For instance, the last film I did in India was called “PK” and it was about religion and was, of course, the biggest hit ever in India. I was making a point that if you follow religion blindly, there will be nothing left on planet Earth except for shoes because everyone will kill everyone. That is what drives me, conveying a point of view to an audience. I find it very inspiring.

What made “Broken Horses” the film to introduce yourself to American audiences?

I don’t think like that, Jason. I don’t plan and think, “Is this the right film for me?” Maybe it isn’t! Maybe I should have made “Slumdog Millionaire” a big hit, you know? I basically go with what I feel like doing and what I feel is the right thing for me to do at the moment. I have never thought too much on, “Is this the right thing for me?” I don’t think like that. I just do what I believe I must do and leave the rest to the Gods of Cinema, so to speak!

What sparked the idea for the story of “Broken Horses” and got the ball rolling?

You know, it is loosely based on a cult movie I did in India called “Parinda.” It was me and my writer, Abhijat Joshi, traveling on a train to Boston when we said, “OK, let’s try to adapt ‘Parinda.'” That was because I had recently seen Martin Scorsese’s “The Departed” and I thought the original Korean film was much better. That is how it all started. It was inspired by that but it has gone somewhere that was very different. When we made Buddy Heckum slow, which was in the fourth or fifth draft, I realized the film was going far beyond the original concept.

Vincent D'Onofrio & Chris Marquette

Vincent D’Onofrio & Chris Marquette in ‘Broken Horses’

What did you hope to accomplish as a director that you might not have attempted before in the medium?

This was the first time I danced with this art form. You see, when you make films in India, they are slightly loud, over the top, people sing and it is a completely different art form. Alfonso Cuaron (“Gravity”) said to me, “This is such a smooth transition to an American movie.” It is very different. James Cameron also praised the film sky high when he saw it. He said, “How did you storyboard this film?” I said, “James, I didn’t do storyboarding. I just worked with the actors.” He couldn’t believe it! [laughs] For me, this was a completely different art form and it isn’t the same thing I have done in India.

What was the biggest challenge you faced on the project?

For me, the biggest challenge was, in the beginning, the prejudice that most Americans have for Hindi cinema. Like I said, the films are loud and over the top. That was a problem when I first came here. But now, most people who have seen “Broken Horses” have loved it. More actors, stars and studios want to work with me, so it is a totally different story than before this film.

Vincent D'Onofrio in 'Broken Horses'

Vincent D’Onofrio in ‘Broken Horses’

Was it difficult to get the right mix of actors to flesh out these detailed characters in the film?

I was fortunate that I was not only the writer/director/producer for the film but I was also the chairman of the studio that was doing it so I could make many bold decisions. For example, when I felt Vincent D’Onofrio was the right actor for the part of Julius Hench, I knew at that given moment we had another name that would help me market the film much easier. I stood by Vincent and said, “No. He is the right actor for this role.” I could make those bold moves because it was my money and my studio. I was totally hand-picking these actors. Chris Marquette was perfect for the role of Buddy and on and on with all of these guys in the film. I was fortunate that no studio head was telling me what to do!

Director Vinod Chopra

Director Vinod Chopra

Being as involved with the world of cinema as you have been through the years, what had the biggest impact on you as a filmmaker? Also, what has you most excited for the future?

Let me tell you, when James Cameron saw my movie and started clapping in a dark theater, that was very inspiring to me. That really pushed me and inspires me to go forward and make my next project. My next project will again be a movie that I really want to make but maybe it will be a huge film like “Lawrence of Arabia” or something huge like that. It is also inspiring when people like James, Alfonso or many others are raving about the film after a screening. What happens when people like what you are doing, it inspires you to go even further. That is what “Broken Horses” has done for me and it has been a very satisfying journey.

Many young filmmakers and creatives can look to you as an inspiration. What is the best lesson to be learned from your story?

Create excellence and success will follow. That is the bottom line and it is that simple.

Thank you for your time, sir! I wish you continued success!

Thank you, Jason! Thank you so much!

Released by Vinod Chopra Films and Reliance Entertainment, ‘Broken Houses’ hits theaters on April 10th, 2015 and stars Vincent D’Onofrio, Anton Yelchin, and Chris Marquette.

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The Boondock Saints: Cult Classic Launches Digital Comic Series On ComiXology

The Boondock Saints: Cult Classic Launches Digital Comic Series On ComiXology

Troy Duffy

Troy Duffy

ComiXology – the revolutionary cloud-based digital comics platform – announced today that the comic book series based on Troy Duffy’s cult-hit The Boondock Saints and published by 12-Gauge Comics is now available across comiXology’s entire platform via iPhoneiPadAndroidKindle FireWindows 8 and the Web. The digital comic debut coincides with the nationwide Blu-Ray release of The Boondock Saints II: Director’s Cut on October 1st.

The franchise continues to thrive worldwide in popularity each year with an ever-growing fan base, so extending the brand into the world of graphic novels was the next logical step.  Fully intertwined with the film series and written by The Boondock Saints creator/writer/director Troy Duffy and comic scribe J.B. Love, the comics follow the further adventures of the MacManus Brothers and their mysterious father and “Original Saint,” Il Duce.

“I’m thrilled to have The Boondock Saints comics come to comiXology because they capture all of the exciting, intense, and poignant moments of The Boondock Saints with their cool Guided View reading experience,” said Saints creator, Troy Duffy.  “ComiXology really has a cinematic way of presenting comics.”

With stunning art by Toby Cypress (Batman: Bloodborne, Rodd Racer), Guus Floor, and Chris Brunner (Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight, Loose Ends), the comics have been met with universal praise by the fans, and 12-Gauge publisher Keven Gardner is ready to take the series to a wider audience than ever before.

“Working with Troy Duffy and this great group of creators has been an amazing experience,” said 12-Gauge publisher Keven Gardner, “and by partnering with comiXology we’ll be able to get these new stories in front of Boondock fans all over the world.”

“We’re really excited to have comics from the original creator of the cult-classic movie The Boondock Saints on comiXology and this speaks volumes about the eclectic and ever-growing library of comics available all-day everyday on our platform,” said Chip Mosher comiXology’s VP of Communication & Marketing. “Now The Boondock Saints fans worldwide will be able read these new adventures on comiXology’s platform.”

Comics already available include “The Lost Gig,” starring the beloved character Rocco and the MacManus brothers in a lost scene from the original The Boondock Saints film, as well as the 6-issue “In Nomine Patris” saga, which is the perfect companion to The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day film. Conceived as a “deleted and extended sequence,” the comic series expands on the story and characters from the sequel and delves deeper into the secret origin of Il Duce.

With over 40,000 comics and graphic novels from more than 75 publishers, comiXology offers the widest selection of English language digital comics in the world. ComiXology’s availability across the iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Windows 8 and the Web makes it the best digital platform for newly interested, current and lapsed comic and graphic novel fans worldwide.*

 

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Director Troy Duffy Discusses The Past, Present & Future Of ‘The Boondock Saints’

Director Troy Duffy Discusses The Past, Present & Future Of ‘The Boondock Saints’

Troy Duffy

Director Troy Duffy is a Hollywood success story, albeit not your typical one. When he shot his independent film on a shoe string budget over a decade ago, he had little idea of the impact that it would have moviegoers. The “Boondock Saints” phenomena started as it exploded into a limited number of theaters in 1999. Boasting an amazing story, brilliant touches of humor and more action than you could shake a stick at, it didn’t take long before word of this unique film to spread like wildfire. Before he know it, Troy Duffy found himself being heralded as an overnight sensation. They say that the spotlight burns hot and as we have all seen too many times in the past, it doesn’t take long for Hollywood to turn on you. After a few scrapes with industry insiders, negative press and an unflattering documentary was released, it seemed that the odds couldn’t have been more stacked against him. What Hollywood didn’t count on was the fact that Troy Duffy is a fighter at heart. The “Boondock Saints” franchise continued to grow at an astounding pace and spawned one of the most rabid fanbases of all time. It is the fan dedication that has continued to fuel Duffy’s creative fire through the years. Everything that the fans have given to him throughout his career is starting to pay off in spades as there is a plethora of irons in the fire for this beloved franchise! Icon Vs. Icon’s Jason Price recently caught up with Troy Duffy to discuss the origin of the “Boondocks Saints” franchise, it’s expansion in to new mediums and the other projects he has in store for devoted fans in the months and years to come!

A lot of people know you as the director of “The Boondock Saints,” one of the biggest cult sensations of our time. What initially attracted you to filmmaking?

Ya know, it has always been a part of who we are growing up. We all have those movies that we love. I came out to Los Angeles to be a musician, while I was doing that I simply wrote a script one day. I had a friend give me a script, so that I could copy the format and write down this story I had bouncing around in my head. That was “Boondock.” Through the deal-making process, I got the opportunity to direct it as well. I guess I sorta fell into it. I am not one of those guys who went to film school and all of that stuff. It was a creative pursuit. I may not have written a script or directed before but I knew, creatively, what to do. It was a fly by the seat of your pants sort of thing! That was backed up by, in my head, “Oh, I’ve done this before. I have watched a million movies and I love all of these things!” That is how it happened.

Troy Duffy

Who were some of the biggest influences on you as a director? Any specific directors?

I don’t know if it was directors, so much as the movies themselves. When we are shooting, any shot we do from behind, we call the “Goodfellas” shot. That would mimic that iconic shot when you are following the guy into the joint, they walk from the back, into the kitchen, through the restaurant and to the table. It is more about the movies for me. When I started out, I probably couldn’t have named more than five to seven directors, ya know? Since then, I have gotten my favorites but, in terms of influences, it was more of the movies themselves that influenced me. I loved the crime genres, “The Godfather” and “Goodfellas.” I LOVE “Apocalypse Now.” I was also influenced by a bunch of movies that you wouldn’t necessarily associate me with, like “The Fisher King” and “The Outsiders.” In terms of a romantic comedy, I liked “When Harry Met Sally,” and as a dude, that is the type of romantic comedy I want to see.

“The Boondock Saints” is definitely a film which has inspired many up-and-coming filmmakers. What can you tell us about how the idea came to you? Was there suddenly a light bulb that turned on?

Yeah, my brother and I were in this band together in Los Angeles. We were living in a pretty seedy neighborhood at the time, like most artists do. We were working at the bar to pay the bills, trying to get by and writing music when we could. There was crime everywhere, man. I came home one time to a guy robbing my place. All of that stuff compiled to the point where I just couldn’t stop thinking about it. The police couldn’t do anything, so I just took out my frustrations on paper. The rest is history.

Norman Reedus and Sean Patrick Flanery have both done some amazing work in their careers, both before and after “The Boondock Saints.” What intrigued you about them and led to their casting?

The film that started it all...

I really liked them both and when we got them together it was weird — they finished each others sentences! My brother happened to be at the bar when I got them together. He took me outside and said, “Troy, those are the guys!” Everybody was kinda feeling that way. It was very a natural thing. The other thing that I kinda had worked out in my head at the time was that I had written a movie that I wanted to see as a movie fan. I wrote it and thought, “Wow! Cool story! I would like to see this. I would definitely go see this movie.” Even if I hadn’t written it and it was a story from someone else, I would have gone to see this movie. We really didn’t want to cast movie stars in the film. Every time that it had happened up until that point, it was like some big movie stepping down to do independent film to reclaim some kind of street cred. When people go into the movie theater with the baggage of seeing some huge movie star, no matter how good the story or the performance is, it still takes five or ten minutes to forget that it is some movie star and get on with the story. I was dead-set against going too famous with those roles. We wanted the feeling that Norman and Sean had — up-and-coming talent that you may not have heard of before.

Looking back on those two films, what do you consider the biggest obstacle that presented itself along the way?

The biggest obstacles when you are making a film are always time and money. Your money dictates how much time you have and what you can and cannot do. There are a lot of times that you get as prepared as you can and you get out there and shoot your ass off with great actors. There are a lot of solutions to the money and time problems that you have to be able to roll with along the way. There were entire scenes in “Boondock” that were cut out or written differently. For example, there were some dream sequences which we had to lose. That is always the biggest obstacle, for any filmmaker, time and money.

Since the original film, you created an amazing sequel and some great comic book tie-ins for the franchise that weave the story together so well. As a fan, I am curious to know how far you have things mapped out in your head, in terms of the whole story of “The Boondocks Saints.”

Troy Duffy doesn't pull any punches...

It is something that I am always thinking about. There are a million things you can do when you set pen to paper. It is really an open range right there! I am always thinking of little things. I like to wait until things hit me. I will be walking down the street and BOOM! Out of nowhere, I think, “Wow! That would be a great idea!” It is one of those things where, along with writing other scripts and exploring other stories, it is something I am always thinking about. In terms of step-by-step, dot-by-dot — What have I planned for the future of “Boondock,” like a part three or something like that? Those ideas are still coming in, though I can say, “Yeah, some of it I have thought about and I have a good map to go by but it is not all there yet.” It is something that I don’t want to rush.

I know there have been some rumblings of bringing “Boondock” into the realm of television. What can you tell us about the potential of that medium?

It is a cool idea and we are exploring that option right now. To me, television is at the point where it has probably eclipsed film. We are seeing so much quality in cable network shows right now. It is really blowing everyone out of the water. Because they are cable network shows, depicting violence isn’t as big of a deal as it is on network television. I love shows like Breaking Bad, Mad Men, Deadwood, Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones and The Sopranos, obviously. In that format, you can use curse words, which in this particular story is a hallmark of ours! Not having the restrictions of network television placed on you, it frees up an artist to explore a lot of options. I am pretty excited about that prospect. I am also intrigued by the time frame. In a film, you have two hours to tell a story. In a season of television, you have 13 or 14 hours! You can really get deep down into these characters. That is why I am really excited about a television prospect for “Boondock,” because we could really see where Connor and Murphy came from and expose all of the Saints lore. We could explore where they got their rosaries or how the prayer came about — all of these things that fans have questions on. We could go into those areas and see how these things were brought to them. That is what I like about the whole TV thing and why it is something I am really into — there is a lot of freedom, a lot more possibilities to explore the story and a lot more “Boondock” for the buck! That being said, it doesn’t expunge the possibility of a “Boondock 3” movie either! You can do both if you are really killing it!

The world and the Internet changed immensely since you released the original film. As a fan, I see how hard your team works to spread the word on all things “Boondock.” How do you feel social media impacted you as a businessman and a director through the years?

The change has been exponential, man! It’s exponential! The idea that you can communicate directly with the fanbase and tell them about events you are having and they will show up in force, has made the world a lot smaller. It has allowed us to consolidate our fanbase, tap into it and keep them informed of anything we wish. If we do announce a television show, a video game or “Boondock 3,” they are instantly aware of it. That didn’t exist back when we did the first movie and it has helped in every way. It keeps you connected to your audience and it keeps them informed. It has been crucial in growing the franchise.

'Boondock Saints: The Video Game'

Speaking of “The Boondock Saints” video game, it is creating quite a buzz. What can you tell us about putting that project together?

Last year at SXSW, I hooked up with a company called Critical Mass. They were fans of “Boondock,” first and foremost, and that is what I was looking for in a gaming company. They really understood the characters and the story. There is always that sense when you go video game that these gamers might not have the sense of everything that is going on and somehow it will all get lost in translation. With Critical Mass, I didn’t feel that. They knew EVERYTHING about the story and they had a great pitch, so we started working with them. I am really excited about it!

There is so much involved with creating a video game and doing it right, like you said. Do you have a timeframe on when we might expect it?

I can’t put a time limit on it. Right now, it all depends on a few things falling into place. That being said, it could be a couple of years or much sooner than that.

Have there been any unique challenges in bringing “Boondock” to the realm of gaming with Critical Mass?

Yeah, just in the expansiveness of video games themselves, ya know? I am not into gaming, so I had my friends show me all of the games that they love, so that I could start figuring out in my head the type of game that we wanted to go with. The worlds and universes they can create in video games are fuckin’ unbelievable! They are exponential, expansive and huge! To me, the biggest surprise was, “Oh, this isn’t like fuckin’ Pac-Man!” [laughs] There are stories behind everything, entire new venues you can go to, characters that you can be, interact with and play. In terms of surprises in the video game world, my biggest one was the endlessness of what you can do in the world of gaming and the coolness of that. You think of “Boondock,” you think, “A bunch of guys go into a Mafia stronghold and start taking out the bad guys.” In a game, you can do anything — cruise ships, bank jobs, interrupting criminals during their committing of crimes, anything! That is what has been the coolest thing for me and the biggest eye opener!

Let’s touch on potential film projects. Last time we spoke, I know you were leaning toward “The Good King.” What’s happening on that front?

Troy Duffy

Troy Duffy: Plotting More "Boondock" Adventures

“The Good King” and I have another script called “The Blood Spoon Council,” which is a serial killer thriller. “The Good King” is a black comedy. The basic story is that a ne’er-do-well Prince’s father dies, he becomes king. Then he and his debaucherous best friend, the Duke, completely ruin the empire through their philandering and drinking. “The Blood Spoon Council” is about a vigilante group that hunts down, captures and executes serial killers. Then they deliver them to the doorstep of the FBI. Those are both being spit-shined by me every fucking other day. I am spit shining those and figuring where we have to go but right now we have a couple of “Boondock” irons in the fire. I am moving forward on “Blood Spoon Council” with this one company that I can’t name right now. It is all going terrifically, it is just a matter of which ball drops in first, ya know what I mean?

Absolutely. It’s a great place to be!

Yeah, it’s not too shabby! [laughs]

Something else that changed greatly in the years since you first came on the scene is the movie industry itself. What are your thoughts on its current state?

Well, there are things that depress me and there are things that excite me. Like anything else in life, there is a flip-side to every coin. For me, the movies based on comic books are being overdone. I mean, it seems that any comic book from a while back is being done now, just for the sake of it. The have a brand and they go for it. I understand the business behind it but a lot of these movies are getting pretty formulaic but the flip-side is that some of it will kill it! I mean, “Iron Man,” I fuckin’ love “Iron Man!” “Transformers” is pretty damn cool and the “Batman Begins” stuff, I loved it. But that is a trend that I would like to see slow down. Another thing that kinda gets me is, what you hear today in Hollywood in these meetings is about the family dollar. They want the whole family to go see a movie and again, I understand the business behind that, but the movies that I grew up with and the movies that I love ain’t family movies, ya know? I didn’t go see “Deliverance” with my mom. [laughs] That grittiness that we used to have in film, I would love to see comeback and you can see it here and there. It’s slowly coming back. I would like to see movies being made for the sake of telling great stories and yes, there is a business to it for sure but I would like that to sometimes be ignored, a little bit more than it is.

'The Boondock Saints'

As I said earlier, I know you guys have really taken a lot of time to carefully grow your brand. With so many irons in the fire, I was curious what a typical day consists of in the “Boondock” world?

Well, I have got a great team of people running things on my end. In terms of my day, I have a lot of creative work to do, so on the business side of things, I am really grateful to have the right people around to handle that. I spend my day, either writing scripts, tuning up old scripts that I am going to go out with at some point or I am into carpentry. As a matter of fact, as you called me here, I am hanging a door that I made. It’s a big barn door that I made for the side entry of my house. I’ve got saw dust all over me, buddy!

As a fan, I think I speak for all of us when I tell you we appreciate all of your hard work as well as your team. What can we as fans do to help support and grow the franchise?

“Boondock” fans don’t generally need to be prompted to do anything, man! [laughs] They are always there for you, like as soon as we announce an event or a party, they show up in force. I don’t know if you know this but Rocco [David Della Rocco] and the guys [Sean Patrick Flanery and Norman Reedus] are out here at SXSW and have been doing conventions, like Comic Con, all across the country. They show up at these things and the “Boondock” fans are showing up in force and they are having the time of their lives! I would just say, keep rollin’ how you’re rollin’ everybody and we might have some good surprises coming up here for you! Keep your eyes and ears open because we are on it!

We discussed misconceptions about you in the past and I think you really put those to bed in recent years. What is the best part about being Troy Duffy these days?

Available Now!

I guess it is having a little more freedom. I remember “Boondock I” and even Boondock II,” we had to work very hard just to work hard. By that I mean, we had to get the movie to a point were we could actually go out physically to do it, shoot it and do our thing! It is getting a little easier. Now, people are coming to us sometimes and I don’t have to beg and plead for every last dollar to make a film. To me, the best part is that we have some freedom now because we have proven our point twice now by doing two very small independent films that had an effect on the audience and did some very big numbers. We no longer have to convince anyone. I love it because now we don’t have to sell people, ya know?

Absolutely! It is an exciting time to be a fan.

Yeah!

St. Patrick’s Day is coming up this weekend. What are you doing to celebrate the big event?

In keeping with my carpentry thing, I have built a bar in back of my house. I will be having some friends over here and drinking some green beer!

Not a bad way to spend the day! Thanks for your time, Troy! We look forward to all you have in store for us. Thanks for your time!

Thank you! Take it easy, Jason!

For all of the latest news and developments from Troy Duffy and everything Boondock Saints, visit the official website at www.boondocksaints.com! You can check out Icon Vs. Icon’s original interview with Troy Duffy at this location – Click Here!

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‘Boondock Saints’ Graphic Novel Launches November 21st At Los Angeles Barnes & Noble!

‘Boondock Saints’ Graphic Novel Launches November 21st At Los Angeles Barnes & Noble!

'The Boondock Saints'

TROY DUFFY and J.B. LOVE – the writers behind The BOONDOCK SAINTS’ initial foray into comics will be signing the collected GRAPHIC NOVEL edition at BARNES & NOBLE in LOS ANGELES and they’re bringing DAVID DELLA ROCCO as well!

TROY DUFFY’s original BOONDOCK SAINTS film is one of the most successful independent movies of all time, with a fiercely devoted fan base – with nearly 5 million online followers of the franchise. With the hit comic series “IN NOMINE PATRIS”, creator/writer/director TROY DUFFY launched the first “Saints” story to take place outside the iconic films. Written by Duffy and comic scribe J.B. LOVE, the comic series is the perfect companion to the films.

The story masterfully interweaves the events of the BOONDOCK SAINTS II: ALL SAINTS DAY with brand new material to reveal the secret history of the original saint, NOAH MACMANUS (IL DUCE) as he wages a bloody war against 1960’s New York’s Underground Crime world. The storyline is intercut with brand new adventures of the BROTHERS MACMANUS (The Boondock Saints) doing what they do best; doling out their special brand of justice to those that deserve it. “In Nomine Patris” brings a new chapter of the Saints saga to life while revealing the family legacy that created this trio of “Shepherds”.

Featuring a forward by Connor MacManus himself – actor, SEAN PATRICK FLANERY – Join Troy Duffy and his comics team in this thrilling new Saints Adventure by pre-ordering the collected edition. This special trade paperback collects all six comic issues, never before seen art, a cover gallery, behind the scenes sketches and more. This is the collection the fans have been waiting for!

BARNES & NOBLE will HOST the first signing of the Graphic Novel before it’s available in stores! The FIRST 200 Guests will Receive a FREE COPY of the Exclusive Comic, “THE LOST GIG” starring fan favorite, ROCCO. The FIRST 100 GUESTS will also receive a FREE BOONDOCK SAINTS POSTER.
The Signing is November 21st at 7pm at the BARNES & NOBLE at THE GROVE at Farmers Market (189 Grove Drive Suite K 30, Los Angeles, CA 90036. The Store Phone Number is 323-525-0270.) For Additional Event Information please visit http://store-locator.barnesandnoble.com/event/74348

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Movie Review: Natalie Zea and Sean Patrick Flanery Shine In ‘InSight’

Movie Review: Natalie Zea and Sean Patrick Flanery Shine In ‘InSight’

In theaters on September 2nd is an exciting new thriller from director Richard Gabai. InSight centers on a cool, calm and collected ER nurse named Kaitlyn played be the lovely and talented Natalie Zea (Justified, Dirty Sexy Money). During a hectic night at the hospital, Kaitlyn and her colleagues find themselves tending to Allison Parkes (Angeline-Rose Troy), a victim of a brutal stabbing. While frantically trying to keep the girl alive, Kaitlyn gets accidentally electrocuted by the defibrillator, which stops her heart as well. Kaitlyn pulls through but having sustained such terrible injuries from her attack, Allison does not. Shortly thereafter, she begins to experience the victim’s memories and disturbing flashbacks of her final moments with her killer.

As the visions persist, Kaitlyn quickly finds herself alone and forced to attempt to solve the crime as no one believes her story. Kaitlyn soon partners with Detective Peter Rafferty, played by Sean Patrick Flanery (Powder, Boondock Saints), who has been assigned to investigate Allison Park’s gruesome murder all while providing care for her cancer stricken mother Patricia (Veronica Cartwright).

To be quite honest, when I first read the synopsis of the film, I thought that it might lead to a middle of the road viewing experience. I was delighted to be wrong on several levels! The film’s fast pace takes flight immediately, sucking the viewer in during the first few scenes! It doesn’t take long before the story begins to take shape around the unfolding mystery, revealing new twists and turns around ever corner. The real strength of this film lies in the performances of Natalie Zea and Sean Patrick Flanery. Both actors are allowed to flex their creative muscle and show their dynamic ranges in a way that you see in few movies. Zea is definitely a star on the rise and carries the bulk of this film on her quite capable shoulders. Flanery adds a terrific balance to his leading lady and brings a sense of stability to the viewer as the mysteries of the film begin to reveal themselves. Quite simply, the duo lose themselves in their roles and bring that certain something that makes you genuinely care about the characters they are portraying onscreen. Hopefully, these type of roles keep rolling in for both actors, as it is high time Hollywood takes notice! The film also features smaller but equally solid roles from Max Perlich, Adam Baldwin and the iconic Christopher Lloyd.

InSight’s harkens back to the days of the classic mind-bending storytelling of ‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘Alfred Hitchcock Presents’ with strokes of the classic film detective films of the 1940’s. It is this type of atmosphere, which could even bring the look of ‘Mad Men’ to mind, combined with the rock solid performances that brings this project to the next level. If you are on the lookout for a film that keeps you glued to the edge of your seat, look no further than ‘InSight’.

RATING: 4/5 Stars

Check out the official site for the film at www.insightthemovie.com and “Like” it on Facebook at www.facebook.com/insightthemovie

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Troy Duffy’s ‘Boondock Saints’ Graphic Novel Now Available For Pre-Order!

Troy Duffy’s ‘Boondock Saints’ Graphic Novel Now Available For Pre-Order!

The BOONDOCK SAINTS‘ initial foray into comics is now available for pre-order in a collected edition chock-full of never before seen bonus material (on sale this November)!

TROY DUFFY’s original BOONDOCK SAINTS film is one of the most successful independent movies of all time, with a fiercely loyal and devoted fan base – including 4.5 million social media fans and counting. With the hit comic series “IN NOMINE PATRIS”, creator/writer/director TROY DUFFY launched the first “Saints” story to take place outside the iconic films. Written by Duffy and comic scribe J.B. LOVE, the comic series is the perfect companion to the films.

The story masterfully interweaves the events of the BOONDOCK SAINTS II: ALL SAINTS DAY with brand new material to reveal the secret history of the original saint, NOAH MACMANUS (IL DUCE) as he wages a bloody war against 1960’s New York’s Underground Crime world. The storyline is intercut with brand new adventures of the BROTHERS MACMANUS (The Boondock Saints) doing what they do best; doling out their special brand of justice to those that deserve it. “In Nomine Patris” brings a new chapter of the Saints saga to life while revealing the family legacy that created this trio of “Shepherds”.

Featuring a forward by Connor MacManus himself – actor, SEAN PATRICK FLANERY – Join Troy Duffy and his comics team in this thrilling new Saints Adventure by pre-ordering the collected edition. This special trade paperback collects all six comic issues, never before seen art, a cover gallery, behind the scenes sketches and more. This is the collection the fans have been waiting for!

INNFUSION and 12-GAUGE COMICS are proud to announce THE BOONDOCK SAINTS, VOL. 1 TP: “In Nomine Patris”; NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER at Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, Hastings, and all quality book and comic book stores across North America.

For a comic shop in your area, please visit www.comicshoplocator.com

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Natalie Zea Discusses Her Career and Her Thrilling New Film, ‘InSight’!

Natalie Zea Discusses Her Career and Her Thrilling New Film, ‘InSight’!

Natalie Zea is more than just a pretty face. Delivering standout roles both on television and the silver screen, this multi-faceted actress has quickly established herself as one of Hollywood’s brightest up-and-coming stars. Whether she is starring alongside Timothy Olyphant in FX’s hit series ‘Justified’ or starring in her new thriller, ‘InSight,’ 2011 is shaping up to be her most amazing year yet. In the new film, Zea plays an ER nurse named Kaitlyn. While tending to a young stabbing victim, she is accidentally electrocuted by the defibrillator that is used in an effort to save the woman’s life. Almost immediately she starts to experience the victim’s terrifying memories. Kaitlyn turns to family, friends, and the police, but no one takes her seriously. She decides to take it upon herself to solve the crime – as the terrifying visions threaten her sanity. She teams up with the detective (Sean Patrick Flanery) on the case and weaves her way through the victim’s past to discover the brutal truth. Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with this rising star to discuss her roots in the entertainment industry, bringing her character in ‘InSight’ from script to screen, the challenges involved and much more!

What got you started on journey in the entertainment industry?

I was an only child and was alone a lot as a kid, so i had to entertain myself, so I had a propensity for it early on. Then, when I was a freshman in high school, my cousin, who was in the theater department, encouraged me to take a drama class. The drama teacher, Evelyn Jones, noticed I had some natural ability and began nurturing it and i fell in love with the process.

Who would you cite as your biggest influence as an actress?

There’s no one person that comes to mind. I think it’s because I’m drawn to certain performances, as opposed to certain performers. We’re all inconsistent, as actors, and sometimes we’re on our game more than other times. Bill Murray in ‘Lost in Translation’ comes to mind, or Jim Carrey in ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’, or Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke in ‘Before Sunset’ and of course Bette Davis in ‘All About Eve’.

One of your latest projects is ‘InSight’. Tell us about your character in the film and what attracted you to this very interesting role?

I’m drawn to the darkness. On the surface, she seems like a pretty straight forward character. And then you get the whole story. And that little twist is what drives the colors and the layers of the character throughout the movie.

What is your process for bringing a character such as this from the script to the screen?

Normally, I would say that I don’t have a process, but i’ve recently discovered I do. Although, it’s not something that can be described in words. I’m not big on research or backstory as I think those things get in the way of the moment. And really all that’s important to me is telling the truth. And I can’t tell the truth if I’m thinking about where this character went to elementary school.

What do you feel that you brought to the character that may not have been in the script originally or even in the man you know?

I have to say that the biggest challenge of this character was not being able to infuse any humor into her. I tend to try and find some sort of levity to any character I play and with Kaitlyn it simply wasn’t an option. so rather than finding something that wasn’t on the page, my challenge was to stay true to how this girl was written.

They say that each role is a learning experience for an actor. What did you learn about yourself/your craft on this film?

I’m an aspiring filmmaker, so I try to take away as much knowledge – whether it be noting something that works or taking note of what went wrong – from every film set as I can. We shot this thing in 15 days and that can be tough on the actors – well, on everyone- and I wonder how something like that affects performance. Maybe the adrenaline adds to it, or maybe it hinders it. It’s hard to know.

What do you think director Richard Gabai brought to the table for a project like ‘InSight’?

Richard is a very ballsy guy! His ambition is impressive. He took a film that was shot for almost no money by hollywood standards and made it look like a multi-million dollar studio film. I don’t know many people who can do that.

Your role in the film is very intense. Where there any moments during the filming that provided a break from that intensity? Were there any funny moments on set or was it all business, all the time!

When I’m working, I always have a tv series that I watch between shots and at lunch as a way to separate myself from what i’m doing on set. Maybe not the wisest choice, but with this particularly movie, I chose ‘Breaking Bad’. Oops. At least it kept me in the right mood! And yes, when you work this closely with a crew, there is a very special bond that’s formed. The wardrobe and hair and make-up departments’ were a huge part of making me laugh and keeping me sane throughout the process.

You have been amazing on FX’s ‘Justified’. As an actor, how satisfying has the role of “Winona Hawkins” been for you as an actor?

I will say that this role is challenging in ways I never anticipated it to be. I often times don’t really understand what she wants, and that can be difficult, because that’s sort of acting 101 “what does my character want in this scene”. She’s proven to be a pretty polarizing character which is thrilling for me. I love the passion – whether it be love or hate – people have for her and I do love her complexities, even though, sometimes her inconsistencies drive me crazy!

Any word if we can we look forward to seeing more of your character in Season three of the series?

I will be continuing on in Season 3.

You have played such a wide variety of roles in your career. Is there a part or a specific genre that you would like to tackle in the years to come?

Comedy, comedy, comedy. It’s funny, I’ve done plenty of comedic roles – DIRTY SEXY MONEY, HUNG, THE OTHER GUYS, CALIFORNICATION – and yet when I meet with producers and say that I’m interested in doing more comedy they’re always shocked. I’m the sort of go to drama girl. If you want a bitchy DA, I’m your woman (although, I’ve put a moratorium on that. No more bitchy DA for me – I’ve reached my quota). But if you look at my resume I’ve done just as much comedy as I have drama. And I personally think i’m better at it. I have so much more fun exploring a comedic character than I do a straight up dramatic one. There’s more freedom there.

How do you feel that you have evolved as an actor over the years?

Oh, god, I don’t know. Sometimes I feel like I’ve devolved, you know? I’ve become a better technical actor over the years, which isn’t always a good thing. When you find you’re acting for the camera and not staying in the scene. I do feel like I’ve become more informed about how things are made. The technical side of things. T.V. is tough, because it’s easy to get lazy and to half ass things, so I’m constantly on myself not to phone it in.

What is the best piece of advice that someone has given you along the way in your career?

Do not read about yourself online. Genius advice. I have a filter I call googleMom. My parents have a google alert on me and will occasionally send me stuff that’s either flattering or outrageously funny. Otherwise it’s none of my damn business.

That being said, do you have an advice for anyone who would like to get involved in the entertainment industry?

See above. Seriously, I can’t say it enough. STAY OFF THE INTERWEBS!

What other projects are on the horizon for you that we should be on the lookout for?

I start work on an indie feature called ‘Sweet Talk’ in a few weeks. It’s a really cute little love strory, with different time periods as backdrops. Actors’ catnip. Then I go back to ‘Justified’ in October. Then I’m producing and acting in a movie that I wrote – it’s been seven years in the making! – in the spring. We start pre-production for that in January and I’m both scared to death and so excited I can’t contain myself.

Anything that you would like to say to the fans before I let you go?

Only that I love them!

Thank you so much for the opportunity to speak with you! We wish you all the best!

Thank You!

– –

Check out the official website for ‘InSight’ at www.insightthemovie.com and remember that the film hits theaters on September 2nd, 2011! 

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Forever Red: Steve Cardenas Talks ‘Power Rangers’ and Force/Balance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu & Yoga!

Forever Red: Steve Cardenas Talks ‘Power Rangers’ and Force/Balance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu & Yoga!

Steve Cardenas, a former “Power Ranger” and 5th degree black belt in American Tae Kwon Do & brown belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) started training martial arts in his hometown of San Antonio, Texas at the young age of 12. It wouldn’t take long for him to realize that he wanted to teach martial arts and follow a career path “karate biz”. At age sixteen, Cardenas received a Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do, prompting him to teach multiple after-school programs to kids and teens.

At twenty, Cardenas moved to Los Angeles, where his journey would lead him to an unlikely audition that would land him the the role of “Rocky the Red Power Ranger” on the TV series ‘Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.’ That show would prove to be an instant overnight success and cement itself in the annals of pop culture history! Since his time on that legendary show, Cardenas has gone on to live out his dream of becoming a martial arts instructor. He successfully ran martial arts studios in California and Texas and in 2009 started a kids-specific program at Hollywood BJJ studio in West Hollywood founded by actor and BJJ black belt, Sean Patrick Flanery. With twenty five years of martial arts experience, Cardenas has also received many outstanding honors, including: two-time Silver Medalist at Copa Pacifica in 2009 & 2011, Gold Medal winner of the 2009 American National Championship, Bronze Medal winner in the 2010 American National Championship, Gold Medal in the 2010 Jiu-Jitsu Pro Gear Open, and Silver Medal in the 2010 No-Gi World Championships.

Now, Steve not only focuses on working with kids in BJJ, but people of all ages and believes that the conditioning, discipline and respect that people learn from martial arts can be carried over into all aspects of their lives. Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Steve Cardenas to discuss his roots in martial arts, his experiences as part of the ‘Mighty Morphin Power Rangers’ and his latest endeavor, Force/Balance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu & Yoga in Burbank, CA!

Steve Cardenas signs for his fans.

Where did you grow up and how did you first become involved in the world of martial arts?

I grew up in San Antonio, Texas and I became involved with Martial arts at the age of twelve.

Is there any specific martial artist that has inspired you the most?

One of my favorites was of course, Bruce Lee. Now days it’s people like Fernando “Margarida” and Lucas Lepri.

How have martial shaped the person that you are today?

Well, everything I am and ever was were because of the martial arts. The confidence and skills I’ve gained have helped me both professionally and socially.

With an extensive background in karate, what got you into Brazilian jujitsu?

A guy who was at the time a blue belt in BJJ came into my studio and very friendly challenged me. I was a Black belt in Tae Kwon Do at the time. He basically man-handled me and choked me out in 10 seconds! He was only training for a year and a half at that time and i had been training for 10 yrs. It was an immediate eye opener.

What has your experience been like in BJJ as opposed to other martial arts disciplines you have be involved with?

Well other styles came very naturally to me. BJJ has not. Its been a long hard road to learn this sport. No one gives you any breaks just because you used to be famous. You gotta start from the bottom no matter what kind of experience you have. And I for one love that.

What has been the most rewarding part of your martial arts training either personally or professionally?

Watching people develop. Taking someone from off the street with no knowledge and teaching them how to unlock things inside them they never knew they had. I know how it felt for me and i love to see that look in their eye when they finally “get it”.

If you could learn another martial art system, what would it be and why?

Well, Ive tried to learn a little bit of lots of different styles here and there. I think I’m gonna take BJJ as far as it will let me.

Many will recognize you from your role as Rocky The Red Power Ranger. How did you initially get involved with that project?

Classic Steve Cardenas

Well, my friend in Texas told me that he heard about a nationwide audition for Power Rangers TV show they were holding in my town so I decided (not expecting any results whatsoever) to audition for a role. I tried out then a couple of days later they called me back and said they wanted to fly me to California to meet the producers. So of course I hopped on a plane and then they met me, I tried out and they hired me on the spot almost! Told me I didn’t even have time to fly home so my dad had to mail me my clothes! [laughs]

Were you able to help choreograph your martial art moves on the Power Rangers show?

That was actually very fun! Yes, they let me choreograph my own stuff a lot of times!

How did your martial arts background compare to the other Power Ranger actors?

Well, only three of us were actual martial artists. The others were gymnasts. But I guess my style was similar to the other guys on the show.

What was the biggest challenge for you as a martial artist/actor on this project?

Well, as a martial artist, the biggest challenge was learning to act! I had never done anything like that before. I was horrible in the beginning. But i got an acting coach and he helped me a lot.

Looking back, what is your fondest memory of that role?

Doing the big feature film in Australia was the funnest part. The most rewarding part was to see the kids from Make A Wish Foundation! These kids dying wish is to meet the power rangers and to be a part of that still chokes me up to this day.

You have appeared at several conventions dedicated to the Power Rangers over the years. What have those experiences been like for you?

I never knew how dedicated the fans were till i went to my first Con. It was quite an eye opener. To see all these people who were little kids back then all grown up and reliving their childhood. Very cool!

Did you or any of your cast mates have any inkling that the show would go on to have the impact that it has had on pop culture when you started out?

Well, no. They had no idea at all. Not even the producers knew it would take off the way it did. No one can really know what an audience will or wont like. They just took a chance and it paid off!

You are running an interesting Force/Balance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu & Yoga business located in Burbank, CA. What can you tell us about the facility and all that you have going on there?

Our school’s environment will be one of non-intimidation. In two arts where things can seem and sometimes are, quite complex, we want the beginner to feel very comfortable. That said, the school is certainly not just for beginners. Even the most advanced practitioner will walk away feeling like they’ve gained something. Plus our place looks kick ass! Top grade Zebra mats, killers sounds, a great lounge area with plasma TV and probably one of the most beautiful yoga rooms you’ll ever set foot in! Stop in a and see the Force/Balance experience for yourself.

How did your partnership with Michelle Muench come about?

Michelle has a son that trained with me at Holllywood Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Where I was and still am getting my training from Sean Patrick Flanery and Ricardo Miller.

You are obviously dedicated to your love of martial arts. What drew you to the role of “teacher” rather than just one of “the student”?

I knew at fourteen that I wanted to be a karate instructor. I told my instructor that and he put me in his apprenticeship program where i learned everything about teaching and running a studio.

Steve Cardenas

If you could only teach or pass on one “thing” to your students, what would that be?

Don’t cheat yourself. Only you really know if you left it all on the mat or not. If you hold back then you only hinder yourself from getting better. No one else can do the work for you!

What would you want your legacy to be known for and why?

That I somehow was an influence in part or in whole to someone’s life being richer than it was before they met me. Not there yet, but it is my ultimate purpose.

What are your thoughts on nutrition for the martial artist? Do you follow any special regimen?

Well, I for the most part eat Vegan. Not because of cruelty to animals (although that’s bad too!) but because the hormones they feed animals now are killing us as humans. Organically grown produce and no processed sugars or grains help keep me in shape.

What do you think about the rave over MMA? Are you a fan of it? If so, who is your favorite “fighter”?

I like GSP, Damien Maia, Anderson Silva, Jacare and BJ Penn.

Finally what advice do you have for people who are just starting off in Brazilian jujitsu?

Step on the mat humble or you will get humbled. Fo Sho! And by the most unlikely of opponents. You never know who you’re messing with. Never judge a book by the way it looks.

Where is the best place to learn more about all that you have going with this endeavor?

At the actual academy or you can go to www.ForceBalanceBJJ.com

Anything that you would like to say to your fans before we let you go?

May the Power Protect you! Thanks Guys!

– –

Be sure to check out Force/Balance Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu & Yoga at www.ForceBalanceBJJ.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/forcebalance. You can also catch up with Steve Cardenas on Twitter at @ForceBalanceBJJ.

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‘InSight’ Starring Sean Patrick Flanery and Natalie Zea To Hit Theaters September 2nd!

‘InSight’ Starring Sean Patrick Flanery and Natalie Zea To Hit Theaters September 2nd!

Who Killed Allison Parkes? Find out when Director Richard Gabai’s “InSight” hits theaters on September 2nd.

Shot in the seedy Boyle Heights district in Los Angeles, InSight follows Kaitlyn (Natalie Zea), an ER nurse, who while tending to a young stabbing victim, Allison, is accidentally electrocuted by the defibrillator that was being used to save the woman’s life. Almost immediately she starts to experience the victim’s memories. Kaitlyn turns to family, friends, and the police, but no one takes her seriously, so she takes it upon herself to solve the crime – as the terrifying visions threaten her sanity.  Ultimately, Kaitlyn teams up with detective Peter Rafferty  (Sean Patrick Flanery) and weaves her way through the victim’s past in an attempt to discover the brutal truth about the murder and herself.

InSight stars, Sean Patrick Flanery (Boondock Saints, Powder, Saw) , Natalie Zea (Justified, Californication) Adam Baldwin (Chuck,  Independence Day, Full Metal Jacket) Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future, Taxi, Star Trek, Aadams Family) Thomas Ian Nicholas (American Pie, Rookie of the Year) Max Perlich (Blow, Cliffhanger) Juliette Landau (Ed Wood, Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and Veronica Cartwright (Alien, Witches of Eastwick, The Birds.)  Angeline Rose Troy is introduced as Allison Parkes.

InSight is the first release for Check Entertainment Distribution , a new company founded by and for Independent Filmmakers. Independent films have been squeezed off of the big screen for too long and CED has a plan to change all that.

Check out the official site for the film at www.insightthemovie.com and “Like” it on Facebook at www.facebook.com/insightthemovie

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