Month: April 2014

An Interview With Filmmaker Chris Esper




Chris Esper Is a graduate of The New England Institute of Technology who recently directed the short film Still Life; here is a link to his website:



Q:  What made you interested in filmmaking?

A: I’ve been into filmmaking for most of my life. When I was young kid, growing up in New Jersey, I lived across the street from a video store. I would always go there and rent a movie and would just be filling my mind with all these films. Then, with the advent of IMDB, I started researching these movies and learning who was in the movie, when it was made and sometimes who directed it. I even attempted to write a screenplay when I was 10 years old and send it off to Hollywood, Columbia Pictures in particular because they had produced my favorite movie, at the time, Ghostbusters. It was returned to me with “Return to Sender” stamped on it, but it made me want to keep going. I started doing some acting and tried experimenting with other forms of art like animation and puppetry, until I got my first camera and realized that I could combine everything I love into one craft. That and I started becoming quite a movie buff and started exploring more directors and such. That’s why I chose filmmaking, essentially.


Q:  What do you hope to express though your craft?

A: Through my craft, I hope to express myself, really. I like to share personal stories on film and perhaps something an audience could walk away with and continue to think of it after it’s over and not just for the duration. I also hope to entertainment through my work. After all, that’s what a movie should be to an audience first and foremost.


Q:  What is Still Life about?

Still Life is a personal story that was based on a quote by Ira Glass. It’s a short film about a photography student who struggles with his thoughts about his creativity and talent.


Q:  What inspired you to make it?

A: Again personal experience. I based the film on, not just the Ira Glass quote, but also my own struggles, doubts and growth as an artist. I wanted to share what every person in a creative or non-creative endeavor goes though and how accepting feedback and constructive criticism must be used to grow rather take it as defeat.


Q:  Do you think inspiration or technique is more important to an artist?

A: I would definitely say inspiration is more important to an artist. The thing with technique is that everyone is different in their approach to how they achieve their results. I may make a film one way and someone else may do it another way. It doesn’t make either person right or wrong as long as you’re getting the results you see in your mind’s eye. Inspiration is important because that’s what separates one artist from the next. What they’re inspired by reflects in their own work and through that inspiration, you develop a voice. You could learn all the techniques in the world and use that in your craft, but the craft should have a voice. That voice comes through inspiration.

Q:  What made you chose the New England Institute of Technology?

A: I chose NEIT for a few reasons. It wasn’t an easy choice at first. Originally, I was very adamant about going to an art school and major in film in New York City. However, that proved to be too much for various reasons. So, I decided to stay local and go to NEIT. It was while I was there that I realized that I made the right choice. If I went to a film school, I would learning a lot about theory and not so much the practicality of filmmaking. Nothing wrong with theory at all, but I really wanted a more hands on experience. My first day at NEIT, I was on the camera. While it’s not a film school by definition, I think it’s important to learn the technical side of film/video to communicate your vision to others. You can’t teach someone to be an artist. That creative side can be honed, but that’s within you. By learning the technical side, my professors would encourage myself and my classmates to use the techniques in a creative way and it helped me a great deal.

Q:   Who are some of your filmmaking influences?

A: I have many influences in filmmaking. Martin Scorsese, automatically, comes to mind. I would say he’s my favorite director. His contagious passion for cinema and his variety and range in his storytelling is just incredible. I love all his films. Other influences include Alfred Hitchcock, who is, of course, a genius. Stanley Kubrick, Walt Disney, Jim Henson and David Cronenberg also comes to mind. I have many more, but those gentlemen are the ones whose films I go to the most for inspiration and draw a lot out of as filmmaker.

Q:  What do you think is the most overused device in film?

A: That’s hard for me to say, because there’s a ton of overused devices in film. Everything has been done and everything, to a degree, can be considered a cliche. The challenge then becomes how to take those overused devices and make them your own or different in some way. This is where your creativity as an artist comes into play very often.


Q:   What was your most frustrating filmmaking experience?

A: I’ve had a number of frustrating experiences in filmmaking, but none of which were bad. They were more challenges in presenting the story the way I envisioned it. For example, I currently direct a web series called “Puppatics”. It’s a web series starring puppet characters. One of the most difficult and sometimes frustrating things about making the show is trying frame a shot with a puppet character. You see, the puppets are cut off by the waist and don’t have any lower limbs. So, you have to try to frame out the arm of the puppeteer as well as their heads. Occasionally, you’ll see someone’s head pop up and you have to fix it. Then, to add to that, we shoot the whole show against a green screen so then lighting and keying can become a bit of an issue as well. It’s a fun challenge though that I look forward to every time we film an episode.


Q:  What would you change about Hollywood?


A: I also find that hard to say since I’m not an insider. I don’t fully know how the Hollywood system works. As an outsider, it seems to be, and I could be totally wrong about this, that most studios are run by business folks rather than folks who know film, film history, etc. I’d like to see more creative individuals run these studios, if that’s the case. Nowadays, the director or producer have very little say in how they want their movie to be seen or what their vision is. There’s so much emphasis on focus groups and demographics, which is understandable of course, but how much of that takes away from the motion picture in question? That’s why it’s called show business, I guess. It’s a business first and foremost.

Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)




An Interview With CheekyChaCha Owner Jasmine Ejan





Jasmine Ejan is the coowner of CheekyChaCha which sells Blowpaste; here is a link to the website:





Q: What is Blowpaste?



A:  Blowpaste is not a paste, but an oral sex lubricant that’s vegan, gluten free, has no preservatives and is the only lube in the world that’s good for your teeth. It is packaged in an elegant, white tube that does not scream sex (resembling toothpaste) so that one can leave on their night stand or bring on the plane (and not get embarrassed when searched).  In addition to oral sex, and/or intercourse, Blowpaste can also be used for massage (aloe vera ingredient is good for skin and digestion. Winter green essential oil in mint flavor is good for arthritis in joints). And of course, it works wonderfully for self-service and handjobs.


Q:  What gave you the idea?



A:  After orally pleasing my partner with oral lubes that had aspartame and candy like substances, I grew tired of having to brush my teeth after doing the deed. Blowpaste eliminates the post brush so one can fall asleep in his lover’s arms.


Q:  How does it work?



A:  Apply Blowpaste on a body part and lick it off. The taste is subtle and freshens up the job for him and her. Some users may experience a slight cooling sensation.


Q:Why would you need a lube for oral sex, isn’t it pretty well lubricated naturally?


A:  The formula in Blowpaste increases saliva production, which helps for longer extended acts of fellatio.


Q: What kind of advertising are you doing for your product?


A:  We are a start up company on a shoe string budget. We advertise via social media, word of mouth and sponsoring events. We also support CSUMB helping bring sex education and awareness on campus. Please follow us on, twitter: @Blowpaste and our instagram: blowpaste. (and hashtag blowpaste, please)


Q: What is your oddest work story?



A:  My oddest work story: I don’t consider it odd, but it’s funny:

But during Miss Saigon, I was creating Orangasmic, and one of my cast member’s lover’s attended the show and was visiting for the weekend. I asked him to test Blowpaste, so we poured some in a paper cup to bring home.  Here he was greeting everyone in the lobby, holding a paper cup of lube (and not shy at all).



Q:What do you like about Chicago?



A:  Chicago is very supportive of its own community. It is centrally located and we are grateful to everyone who has helped us in our journey.


Q:What would you change about it?


A:  I can’t think of anything to change about Blowpaste.  About Chicago, I would change the weather. It gets so cold in the winter! But that’s how Blowpaste began; on cold winter days and we didn’t want to go outside to play.


Q:What kind of day job do you have ( or have you had) and how does it help you in marketing your product?



A:  My musical theater career has helped develop Blowpaste because most people in theater are very open-minded and creative. Blowpaste’s new flavors have been tested amongst the most talented singer/dancer/actors across the nation (depending on what show I was doing or what city I was in). In addition, most of the models and actors in the commercials come from my network being in the entertainment industry.

My partner has extensive knowledge in sales, currently working in cell phone retail. He also has a background in writing has also helped in marketing and commercial development.


Q: What is the most challenging thing about working in the sex aide industry?


A:  Proving to buyers that we are legit has been the most challenging part of Blowpaste. We didn’t go to business school, or have had many years of experience owning a business, or worked in adult entertainment. We are passionate and believe in our product. Very soon, we will convince the world that Blowpaste should be part of your life. Blowpaste has been purchased internationally (Australia, France, Taiwan, Netherlands) and nationwide. Our mission is to spread love, joy and healthy clean smiles.


Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

An Interview With Writer and Former Skating with Celebrities Judge Mark Lund





Mark Lund is the writer/director of the  film  Justice Is Mind and a former judge of the reality show Skating with Celebrities; here is a link to his website:


Q: What is Justice Is Mind about?


A: In a future where MRI technology can read your mind, the trial of the century soon begins when a defendant faces his own memory for a double murder he doesn’t remember committing.


Q: What inspired you to create it?


A: While researching the sequel to another screenplay I was working on, I saw a 60 Minutes broadcast in 2009 that discussed thought identification ‘mind-reading’ techniques through fMRI processes that were developed at Carnegie Mellon University. What’s very exciting for Justice Is Mind is that we are screening at Carnegie Mellon on April 28 where the scientist who developed this process will introduce the film!


Q: If you could read the mind of any famous person in history who would it be? (why)


A: Abraham Lincoln. One can only imagine what he was thinking as a nation founded by and for the people was being ripped apart. What were his motivations? What were some of his plans that may or may not have come to pass? Did he ever think the south could have been victorious?


Q: You were a judge on the Fox show Skating with Celebrities, what made you interested in the sport?


A: My interest in figure skating started while I was growing up in a very small town about an hour west of Boston. We had a pond in the woods and that’s where I first fell in love with figure skating. From there I passed some tests, did some teaching and then ultimately launched a figure skating magazine that became the world’s largest.


Q: What was your opinion of the outcome of the 2014 Olympic ice skating competition?


A: I was commentating for a variety of TV networks at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City and reported on the corruption in judging for CNN and a variety of other networks. That was a turning point for the sport and then the scoring changed. After a couple of years, and leaving the figure skating magazine, I lost all interest in the sport. I didn’t watch any of the 2014 games. Of course, they had another judging scandal. Sadly, the sport is a shadow of its former self from a popularity point of view.



Q: What kind of training have you had?


A: My training is very practical, hands on and comes from working in various industries. I learned about publishing and consumer marketing when I worked at Time magazine for a few years. As for TV and film, starting in the early 1990s I was often selected to commentate on the sport during different times of the year and learned how a set needed to operate. It was a fantastic learning experience. I’ve also had a few great mentors along the way.


Q: What is your oddest backstage story?


A: The oddest backstage story was during Skating with Celebrities. I won’t name names of course, but there was an intense romance going on between two of the talent. One was single and one was married. In fact, I was at their wedding a couple of years prior. It gave the word “awkward” a whole new meaning. It was interesting watching the public face of everything being “fabulous” when I knew who was going home with who after the lights went dark.


Q: Do you think the Tanya Harding incident ultimately helped or hurt the sport of skating?


A: Absolutely helped. Figure skating was already on the rise prior to the Tonya/Nancy incident. However, the “whack heard around the world” at the 1994 U. S. Figure Skating Championships is what set off the tidal wave of popularity that propelled the sport for the next decade. Let’s just say anyone working even remotely in the sport saw a substantial financial bump because of that incident.


Q: What is The Ashton Times?


A: The Ashton Times is a marketing consultancy and production organization. In addition to producing films, I’m also a marketing consultant for a variety of different companies.


Q: What are some of the differences between marketing an E-Book and marketing a regular book?


A:Well the practical differences are in the physical cost. With a traditional book you still have hard printing costs (with unsold returns) while an E-book is generally a one time set up with cover art. That being said, in my view, that’s where the differences end as you need to develop a following for your book. You need to give readers a reason to purchase your book over some other author.




Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

An Interview With Actor Robert Michael Anderson


Robert Michael Anderson is an aspiring actor and co-company manager of RWS& Associates; here is a link to his website:


Q: What made you interested in acting?

A: Acting is the only thing I ever saw myself doing with my life. there is something euphoric about allowing oneself to completely become immersed in another character, and it’s both spiritually and creatively stimulating.

Q: What is RWS and Associates?

A: RWS and Associates is a full in house entertainment and production company based out of NYC, headed by Ryan W Stana and a powerhouse team of entertainment professionals. Their client list is remarkable and the company is highly respected amongst the industry

Q: What role do you play in the company?

A: I am currently a co-company manager and different leading characters in their new productions at Idlewild in Pennsylvania, and occasionally am called to do behind the scenes work such as scouting at the model and talent expo in Dallas, TX

Q: Who are some of your acting influences?

A: Early on, Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire were big influences, as my “type” tends to be more golden age musical theatre and vintage/period American (such as WW2, 20’s, 30’s, etc). More contemporary, on the other hand, my influences range from Rachel McAdams in “To the Wonder” and Eric Mccormack in “Perception.” Although I am viewed as an upbeat and funny guy, the roles I succeed best at are more dramatic/serious in nature.

Q: .What kind of day job do you have and how does it influence your acting?

A: I have the most amazing day job! I work at a dog daycare, Posh Pet Care, and they offer amazingly flexible hours to allow for auditions during the day and I work the night shifts. I bathe, feed, and take care of tons of dogs on a daily basis.

Q: What’s your cutest dog story?

A: There’s one dog, Bruno, and he’s a mixed breed Mini-pin and just about every day I am able to rock him to sleep in my arms. Q: What famous role could you have nailed A: The role of Jack in Titanic. Honestly, I’m just about as young at heart with love and romantic in nature as that role could ever ask for. I’m also great with vintage and period roles, so I totally could rock that role.

Q: What role did you play in The Drowsy Chaperone?

A: I played the male lead, Robert Martin

Q: What did you do to prepare for the role?

A: The biggest challenge in the role for me was rollerskating blind folded toward a 13 foot stage drop, having never rollerskated before on vintage 1920’s skates. I had to take weekly skating lessons on top of an intense vocal and dance rehearsal daily. It was an intense process but it paid off when I was nominated bu the Kennedy Center for an Irene/Ryan actor award for outstanding leading performance.

Q: If you could change one thing about show business what would it be?

A: Image and the pressure to fit into a “leading” stereotype. I know models with Ford Models and Wilhelmia who eat cotton balls and water for lunch to stay thin. I am who I am, and I am fit and stay active not just for my roles but also because it’s who I am, and I’m not going to let anyone, especially the “industry” tell me otherwise. I spent a year listening to professionals and stylists and image consultants and didn’t book a thing. I did what I felt would work for me and I’ve been booking like crazy. Just sayin’.


Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)


An Interview With Jaybird St. Productions Director Jason Walker



Jason Walker is the executive director of Jaybird St. Productions; here is a link to it’s Facebook page: 


Q: What inspired you to start Jaybird Productions?

A: For literally as long as I can remember, I’ve only wanted to be an artist & entertainer.  My experiences growing up from childhood into my mid-20s have led me to a love & appreciation for all arts, but I’ve primarily focused on acting, poetry, & music.  In my late 20s, I attended the New England Institute of Technology for Video & Radio Production; I felt that knowing what happened behind the camera/microphone would give me a better understanding of what was required of me in front.  During my mid-30s, I entered the RI film & TV community; I helped groups like the RIFC & SENE, & I watched some of the best operate behind the camera.  After being lead producer for the Providence 48 Hour Film Project for 3 years, I felt like I could start directing & producing film; after my first production, “Who’s Cafe”, received great reviews, I decided to continue in this vein.

Q: What kind of services do you offer?

A:JSP takes the work I’ve either written myself or found elsewhere & produces quality projects for distribution.  We also plan events to promote these projects & search for other artists to promote, without altering said artists’ processes.

Q: What can you offer that other production companies can’t?

A:Every production company can do what the others do.  Some people think that they have a special knack & don’t want to give away trade secrets, but I disagree with that philosophy.  We can’t be in all places at all times, but if someone we turn down then asks us for a recommendation to others, we need to be sure that those we recommend would do a job of sufficient quality.  What makes JSP different from the other companies is what makes every company different: the people.  No one else will bring my ideas, my open & creative mind, my sharp eye & ear, or my process to the table, so nothing will look, sound, or otherwise be like what I do.

Q: What was the most challenging thing you ever had to produce?

A:Being lead producer for the RIFC’s Providence 48 Hour Film Project was a challenge, because I had to take point on everything.  Coordinating the schedules of venues, judges, & volunteers isn’t an easy thing, but I had some great help & managed to pull off some great events for those three years.

Q: What kind of day job do you have and how does it effect running your production company?

A:I don’t have a day job.  Right now I have other funds that assist me in managing day-to-day life, so that I can focus on making this endeavor fruitful, but I would be homeless, if I had to be, just to make sure nothing distracted me from working in this capacity.

Q: You contributed writing to Shallow Graves magazine, what is the theme?

A:SG is a magazine devoted to all things sci-fi/fantasy.  This ranges from medieval & magical fare, like Game of Thrones & Lord of the Rings, to supernatural & horror, like the Nightmare on Elm St. & Friday the 13th franchises.

Q: What made you interested in writing for it?

A:I was personal friends, as well as colleagues in theater, with the owners & editors, & they needed assistance in not just getting articles but also promotional events.  I did some research for them & provided reviews.

Q: What do you like about LA?

A:LA is a warm & vibrant city, & its communities are diverse.  There’s a place for every type of artist/entertainer/media person.  Also, it’s large enough so that, if you don’t feel successful in one area, you can just go into another.

Q: What don’t you like about it?

A:Due to the immense size of the city & county, & to the fast-paced nature of today’s society, travel requires independent transportation; if you’re not in LA proper, the Metro system doesn’t work well for those who do more than just perform.

Q: If you could meet a famous producer who would it be and why?

A:I have ideas for bettering the industry & society as a whole, so I would want to meet a producer who has not only the ability to make this happen but the interest interest in doing so.  People like Oprah Winfrey & Ellen DeGeneres are well-known for their giving natures, plus they understand what it means to be on either/both sides of the camera; I would like to meet one of those ladies.




Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)



An Interview With Writer/Producer Matthew Clark



Matthew Clark hosts and produces the monthly video sketch show Show Your Shortz at Flappers Comedy Club in Burbank. His screenplay Rodeo Driver, was nominated for Best Screenplay at the 2011 Beverly Hills Film Festival. He produces the web-series The Watering Hole: here is a link to his website:


Q: What made you interested in sketch comedy?

A:For me, it’s always been a natural feeling so it really came to me organically.

Q: What inspired you to start Show Your Shortz?

A:I didn’t create Show Your Shortz but I took over the show for someone.  The show’

s format is right up my alley and I was able to bring something new to it and give it the respect it deserves.

Q: What do you think are the ingredients for a good comedy sketch?

A:Hard work, original content. Creative writing.

Q: Who are some of your comedic influences?

A:Jim Carrey, Steve Martin, Mike Myers

Q: Why do you think The Watering Hole is so popular?

A: I think initially it became very popular because it was a subject (racism) a lot of people didn’t want to touch but was done in such an hilarious way double meanings and non-sequitars that the brilliant writing of  The Watering Hole really spoke to people in a way they could relate to.

Q: What kind of day job (or income source) do you have and how does it influence your creative work?

A:I have a 9-5 job and it basically kills all creativity I have so it’s up to me to work on my craft under the radar at work and keep it alive by igniting it when I am not at work.

Q: What is Rodeo Driver about?

A:A comedy; classified, and will be hilarious.

Q: What is your oddest work story?

A: I wrote one two weeks ago about an old time filler station, some weird accents and a desert.  I must have been on the drink.

Q: What do you like about Burbank?

A:Clean town overall and lots to do.

Q: What would you change about it?

A: I don’t actually live in Burbank so I can’t answer that honestly.


Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)

An Interview With Actor Danny Pardo




Danny Pardo is an actor who is featured in the upcoming film Angel of Death. He starred in the film Counterpunch and is a series regular on The Shield; here is a link to his website:


Q:  What made you want to be an actor?
A: At age 17 and after graduating form High School and while studying through University of Belgrano my Business Degree and afterwards my Marketing Degree, I started working in the corporate world at one of my father’s company, a Mattress Manufacturing Company in Argentina. For 15 years straight I have been in the business world developing and creating the demand of non-existent products for existent markets and introducing and creating new markets with completely new products. At 32 years of age, life found me at a crucial moment where I had realized that “I wasn’t having fun in my life”, and that businesses per-se where killing me slowly from the inside. Upon realizing that, I remembered then and there when I was nine I was watching a black and white TV show and saw this kid acting in it, and my immediate thought back then was “wow, that looks fun”. And after thinking that, it was as if a thunderbolt hit me right in my forehead opening me up to a new world that before was concealed to me and unavailable. And in August 17 of 2003, I declared that “Who I am is An Actor and I want to have fun in my life”. Such was the impact of this declaration and this new life, that on the 16 of September 2003, four weeks later, I filmed my first commercial for the Florida Lottery in Miami.
Q:  What is Angel of Death about?
A: Unfortunately I can’t disclose too much info about Angel of Death but it is a Crime/Drama movie, where good people are wronged by bad people, the good people want revenge and it’s a mix of you don’t know who really is the bad guy and who is the good guy. But one thing I can tell you is that I had a lot of fun!

 What role do you play?
A: I played the principal role of DON LUCIANO, the heir of the Los Angeles Italian Mafia, whose father was very good friends with the Russian Mafia boss (Armand Assante) and is taking the business according to his own view.
Q:  How did you prepare for the role?
A: I didn’t want to use the stereotype American-Italian Mafia bosses that have been seen on so many movies to create my character. So I started by going authentic Italian (which I am in part). I created him as a complicated character who was never acknowledge by his father as being good at anything since he was a kid back in Trieste. Lacking the father son relationship, made him resentful towards his father and promised himself to be more and better than his father. And then I kept on building from there… LOL

Q:  What makes films about organized crime so popular?
A: I guess that since organized crime is real BUT very few people are involved in it (comparing to the 7.1 billion people in this planet) that this genre enables us to have a peek into that scary and intricate underground world and this way we get to live it vicariously… that’s what I believe…
Q:  What is your oddest on set story?
A: Probably the oddest one is that I can’t think of the oddest one. But if I have to pick one was while filming Prison Break in Dallas, they drove me to a Jungle just south of the city that would represent Panama. After filming on that location for the length of the shooting, the last day when we wrapped and after about one hour of changing myself back to my clothes and prepping to leave set, when I got out to the “Jungle” it was gone. The whole entire Jungle was a fake Jungle (the plants were real) and a line of trucks where loading them and taking them somewhere else. It’s odd that I didn’t realize it and I believed it was a real jungle.

Q:  You Play a Mexican Commando on “The Shield”; how did you get the role?
A: I auditioned for it. I came in the room certain of who the guy was and I manned the audition telling the Casting Director what was going on in the scene and how I wanted to put the chair and I even told her something I wanted her to do. I guess it worked ☺

 Who are your acting influences?
A: Contrary to many actors, I don’t have one, two or three actors that I look up to. Who and what has influenced me and more precisely what has inspired me and keeps inspiring me, is the truth with which the role has been portrayed and in that, the willingness of the actor’s identity to disappear and allow the role to come alive via his instrument. If I get touched, moved and inspired by what I see on screen, I have been influenced.

Q:  You played a boxing promoter in Counterpunch; what did you do to research the role?
A: I went back to basics for this role. I asked myself all the questions about him, did some on-line research, pulled from some life experiences that I wanted to use, invented many others, etc. But most importantly, I constantly checked with the Director if what I believed and I had created for myself was going to move the film forward. Because ultimately, like in the corporate world the company’s goals give a frame for your personal goals within that company, in films it’s about the movie.

 What would you change about Hollywood?

Hmmmm… interesting question. This can be a very long answer because it has so many different aspects to it. But to pick one thing I would change, is to make Hollywood and Los Angeles competitive again so jobs can come back.


Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)