10% of our goal if we succeed will be donated to the charity of our choice: The Arizona Humane Society.
Watch the teaser trailer for our movie here:
Story and Cast
Tom Sizemore stars as Jack Durant, a restaurateur, ladies man, and mysterious gentleman who maintained many connections to the mafia.
From the backwoods of Tennessee to the world of Vegas at the time of Bugsy and finally as the owner of his famous steakhouse, Durant is a legend and dynamic character, at once charming, powerful and dangerous. This film tells his story during one day at his restaurant.
Watch Tom Sizemore's interview with FOX 10 news about the film:
The film also features an amazing supporting cast:
Pam Grier will play B.J., the maître d’ of Durant’s restaurant. Grier is a cult icon and one of the most respected African-American actresses in the film industry. She is known for her roles in 70s classics of the “Blaxploitation” genre such as Coffy and Foxy Brown, and of course her lead role in Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown.
Peter Bogdanovich will play George. Bogdanovich is one of the most respected directors and producers in the industry, known for such classics as The Last Picture Show, Paper Moon, and What’s up Doc. He has also appeared in front of the camera several times on film and TV, most notably in a recurring role on The Sopranos and Law & Order.
Michael Richards will play Dizzy Dean, the famous baseball player and radio personality. Richards became an international star as the character Kramer on Seinfeld. Before and after the hit television show, he has appeared in several feature films and currently has a lead role on the show Kirstie. Richards is excited to surprise audiences with a more dramatic role.
Joe Don Baker
Joe Don Baker will play our mysterious Cowboy. Joe Don is a screen legend, known most for his iconic role in the original Walking Tall and for over forty years, has been an incredible presence in movies. Joe Don even appeared in three James Bond films, once as a villain and twice as one of Bond's associates.
Crew and Production
Travis Mills - Writer/Director/Producer
Travis Mills is one of the most respected and established film producers and directors in Arizona. Since founding Running Wild Films in 2010 with playwright Gus Edwards, he has directed four feature films and over 80 short films. He has also produced music videos, commercials and documentaries.
Watch Travis Mills's interview with Fox 10 about Durant's Never Closes:
William Long - Producer
William Long is a relative newcomer to the film industry; however he has quickly become a force in the Arizona film business and a strong hand at Running Wild Films. His planning and producing skills, along with his creative contributions have proved invaluable during the 52 films in 52 Weeks project as well as our last feature film Duel at the Mound.
James Alire - Sound, CEO of 5J Media
James Alire and his company 5J Media have been in collaboration with Running Wild Films for our first five feature films and our 52 Films in 52 Weeks project. He has proven to be the most professional production and post-audio mixer for film in Arizona and we consider his collaboration to be one of our greatest assets as we set out to make films that not only "look" good, but have clean dynamic sound and a powerful soundtrack.
Nick Fornwalt - Director of Photography
Nick Fornwalt works internationally on commercials, music videos, documentaries, reality television, and major motion pictures. With experience working in a variety of shooting conditions and worldwide locations, Nick has developed a broad skill set, tailored to the camera department. He has worked with Running Wild Films as a cinematographer for several of the 52 films in 52 weeks and our last feature Duel at the Mound. Fornwalt’s other credits include camera operation for the History Channel's Ancient Aliens, Universal Pictures’ Fast & Furious 7, and working as the director of photography for Happy Little Friend, a feature length documentary shot in Brazil.
Michael Hanelin - Casting Director
Over the past few years, Michael Hanelin has become one of the leading, most respected actors in Arizona. His work in feature films, shorts, music videos and commercials continues to stand out in this community. In 2012, he also became Running Wild Films's casting director, finding talent for our 52 films in 52 weeks project as well as our recent feature film Duel at the Mound. Hanelin continues to work closely with director Mills and producer Long on casting for Durant's Never Closes.
Durant's Never Closes will begin filming on March 22nd, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. Production will be completed by April 1st.
During this time we will film a majority of the movie on a sound stage where a set will be constructed by production designer Rachel Tullio and her crew to resemble Durant's restaurant from the 1970's.
The film's production production budget is $250,000. We have several investors who have provided most of that budget but we need this additional sum of $100,000 to help us reach our complete budget and to provide additional funds for film festivals and marketing costs.
Starting in the summer of 2015, we will be submitting Durant's Never Closes to the top festivals in the country and around the world such as Telluride, BFI London, and Venice. From there, festival submissions will continue.
We will have a presence at the 2015 American Film Market and will be seeking domestic and international distribution for the film throughout this year.
Our ultimate end goal is to see Durant's Never Closes played in select theaters and receive a successful VOD release on such platforms as Netflix and Hulu Plus.
*There will be a private test screening for the film before it is submitted to festivals. This is available for the 25 dollar backer.
Risks and challenges
We have thought hard on the biggest risks and challenges that face our movie:
1. Working under the film's tight shooting schedule (at Running Wild and 5J media we have developed the skills to do so, having shot our last feature film in 9 days, but every production and schedule presents its own time difficulties)
2. Shooting primarily on a sound stage for the first time will present its own challenges but we will be pre-lighting our set and doing test shots the whole month before shooting which will make us as prepared as possible for this new style of filming.
3. Festivals and distribution. Running Wild and 5J have been focused on self-distribution through VOD like Vimeo for the last five years. With this project, because we feel it will reach a wide audience, we want to explore festivals and worldwide distribution. Lessons learned with our last film DUEL AT THE MOUND and our upcoming feature RECESSION ROAD (which we are shooting before Durant's Never Closes) will help us learn lessons about festivals and distribution that we can apply to Durant's.
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