Brian Metcalf , is an Asian-American artist, director, film producer, actor and screenwriter. His work includes directing, producing and writing the micro-budgeted drama/thriller The Lost Tree and Living Among Us starring John Heard, William Sadler, James Russo, Esme Bianco, Andrew Keegan and Thomas Ian Nicholas.
Metcalf also helped produce a documentary called Little Gandhi which was submitted by Syria for consideration for an Academy Award in the Foreign Language Film category. It was the first entry ever by Syria and won the Murray Weissman Award for the poster Brian created for Little Gandhi.
His latest film “Adverse” is about a man who tries to save his younger sister after he discovers she is addicted to drugs and caught in a seedy underworld. Mickey Rourke stars as Kaden, the underworld boss who runs operations and who hires Ethan (Thomas Ian Nicholas), a rideshare driver who discovers his younger sister (Kelly Arjen) has become entangled in drugs and debt.
He is currently writing a screenplay for his new film he is producing with actor Mickey Rourke.
Juliet: Tell us more about your new film "Twilight Into Darkness" ?
Brian: Twilight Into Darkness is a film about a detective who is trying to stop a serial killing who is going around terrorizing the city while at the same time, trying to solve his own demons.
Juliet: You currently finished filming Adverse, in one word tell us what it's about?
Brian: One word, wow. Okay I would say that word is "protective".
Juliet: You've got an amazing cast including Penelope Ann Miller, Lou Diamond Phillips, Sean Astin, Thomas Ian Nicholas and Mickey Rourke who is now producing your new film. How did you two meet?
Brian: Mickey and I met on the film Adverse. We were doing a lot of scenes together and we really hit it off. There was a mutual respect for each other and similar vision.
Juliet: What is it like to work with Mickey Rourke?
Brian: It is a dream come true to work with him. As a child, I watched Mickey Rourke in many films and always admired his acting ability. I knew he was quite talented and I had always dreamed of working with him. Between takes, we discussed doing another project together and I jumped at the opportunity.
Juliet: What were you like as a child?
Brian: I was very shy. I didn’t have many friends. I would just stay home and draw a lot of times in the summer and watch countless amounts of films.
Juliet: Was there a pivotal moment when you decided to follow your passion for filmmaking?
Brian: I remember as a child I would watch movies all the time while drawing. I knew during my 12th birthday that if I was ever given the opportunity, I would make feature films but I did not think that opportunity would ever come.
Juliet: When do story ideas usually hit you?
Brian: Story ideas hit me at all hours of the day and night. There are times when I will wake up from a dream or nightmare and then I’m obsessed with writing it down so I won’t forget. Other times, I think of past experiences and that’s when I feel I have something to talk about. And other times, I might see something on the news and come up with an idea based off of that. Most of the time, I try to base all my ideas in some way on some past experiences.
Juliet: Whose directorial work are you most inspired by?
Brian: I have been inspired by many directors for different reasons, not just one. Francis Ford Coppola, Spike Lee, Paul Thomas Anderson, James Cameron, Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Alfred Hitchcock, Stanley Kubrick are all fantastic directors for their different visions. They all have different reasons as to why you can learn from them.
Juliet: Your dream collaboration?
Brian: This film with Mickey Rourke is one of my dream collaborations along with the great cast we intend to bring on board. There are so many great talents out there but this collaboration is one of my dreams come true.
Juliet: Where do you want to go from here?
Brian: I want to keep working on a variety of interesting and different projects. I would like to keep collaborating with great, diverse talent while having larger budgets to work with and I want to keep enjoying what I do.
Juliet: What advice would you give to a young person following in your footsteps as a film director?
Brian: My advice would be to keep honing your craft and keep learning. If you want to be a filmmaker, do your research on the films you admire. Learn how those filmmakers did what they did. One thing I do is attend a lot of Q&As so I can learn from the filmmakers. I take every opportunity I can to ask those directors questions so that I can learn from them. I watch many films and feel I will never stop learning. When you think you know it all then you stop learning and progressing. I want to keep improving my skills not just as a director but also as an actor, producer and writer. Learning everything you can in this business can be extremely helpful. Acting lessons can help you to communicate with other actors to get the performances you want. Writing helps you to understand structure in scripts. Producing can help you learn what you have to work with on projects. It all is important to learn.
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