One of the mysteries of the movie industry is defining the duties of the movie producer.
Simply put, the producer is the person who puts all the pieces together.
Just as the director directs what you see on the screen, the producer directs everything behind the scene to make the movie happen, a process that takes years to materialize, and which was the case with the movie “The Living Wake”.
I caught up with the producer of the movie, Script Pipeline’s Chad Clough to get the scoop on his production work, along with his General Manager and script consultant Matt Misetich. What follows is a discussion about Chad and Matt’s involvement in “The Living Wake” and other movies Script Pipeline has produced and writers it has fostered.
How did Script Pipeline first come in contact with the story?
CHAD: My friends Mike O’Connell, a comedian, and Peter Kline, a writer, asked if I’d review the script for them. At this point, I came on as a creative consultant offering story advice from an early stage. They worked on it for years. Then, in 2005, we all began working together to raise money for production.
What was the initial attraction to the script?
CHAD: It’s a very unique, yet meaningful comedy in terms of theme and message. We always feel like when there’s this much heart behind a story the comedy really has the opportunity to flourish.
How long from conception to production?
CHAD: For Peter and Mike. . . wow, probably 6 or 7 years. Definitely a long process, but nothing too out of the ordinary for the typical feature script.
The movie won several awards, how did that help with distribution?
CHAD: A little bit. Distribution is tough, though. So many factors determine whether or not a film will get picked up-the quality of the story and actors, the cast, how hot a certain idea or genre is. Other than a film featuring A-list actors, you’re never really sure what a distribution company is going to respond to.
The “Living Wake” and “Get Low” seemed to be on the same vibe. Thoughts on
CHAD: I think the message in both is a bit different, although it is interesting a similar concept came up. . . . Who knows, it might even help boost interest in The Living Wake, since Wake came out first.
Has Script Pipeline produced other movies?
MATT: Most recently, Chad was producer on the action/comedy Operation: Endgame, featuring Rob Corddry, Zach Galifianakis, Ellen Barkin, Ving Rhames, and an ensemble cast. As of August 2010, the film is available on Blu-Ray and DVD. At the moment, we’re of course interested in finding new indie scripts to develop, garner funding for, and produce. Fortunately, we get a first look at thousands of scripts every year. Still looking for the next great one.
Aside from production, are you guys involved in other aspects of moviemaking?
MATT: Our contact base is pretty limitless-from directors, to cinematographers, to (especially) the acting world. Our goal for the immediate future is to link all these creatives into one place, so that, say, a writer could link up with an actor, and then a director, a producer, and so forth to potentially move their screenplay forward by packaging talent. Sort of reviving the spirit of indie filmmaking. At the same time though, over the years we’ve built relationships with major production companies/studios, so the possibilities of involving ourselves with larger projects is always an option.
But the primary goals remain the same: to foster writing talent worldwide.
I saw The Living Wake, and I truly enjoyed tits unique satirical look on life and society, featuring the talents of Jesse Eisenberg and Mike O’Connell. Plenty of laughs.