Repo Man star Olivia Barash is directing a full-length documentary film for Fallout Entertainment, FRIENDS OF THE VIPER ROOM
If you were getting past the velvet rope outside of Hollywood's elite watering hole, the world famous Viper Room, on the Sunset Strip in the 1990’s, you found yourself at party central. Johnny Depp originally opened his intimate venue to have a cool place to hang out with his buddies and play or listen to the best music around. Chances were good that if you were a “Friend of the Viper Room”- that was what we called the club’s guests who got access to the tiny back office of the nightclub – you may have been even more famous than the bands playing on the stage. Around this time I was hired as the club's Promoter and V.I.P. Liaison and I am now making a fun and unique musical documentary which will get anyone that watches it behind that velvet rope!
Impromptu and Laid Back
One never knew what to expect, but entertainment at it’s finest was always guaranteed. It was impromptu and laid back and simply the best club to see some first class live music up close and personal. Whether it was an amazing blues band or an up and coming rock act or a sizzling burlesque dance show, Depp's down to earth vibe made all feel welcomed.
Unknown bands like Kara’s Flowers (Maroon 5), The Wallflowers, The Pussycat Dolls, Counting Crows, The Black Eyed Peas and many more were launched into stardom from that small stage in the best sounding room in town. SPOILER ALERT: we have some exclusive never before seen footage of these exact shows!ß
A really good night!
On a really good night, some of the “friends” would take the stage for surprise performances, like Mick Jagger, Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Billy Idol, or Iggy Pop. You couldn't buy a ticket in advance for these spectacular shows. You just had to be lucky to be in the right place and at the right time (which was usually real late at night at the Viper – just before closing - when the surprise guests took the stage).
Why was The Viper Room the hub for Hollywood's who's who?
So kickback was the environment that even some of the V.I.P. regulars, like Christina Applegate and Adam Duritz took jobs working behind the bar and The Walking Dead's, Norman Reedus used to pass out flyers for the club.
Melody Room, All That Jazz, Filthy McNasty’s, The Central etc.
We'll go back to the nightclub's first incarnation in the 1940's, when the Melody Room was a hangout for Mickey Cohen, all the way through it’s various incarnations through to the birth and the heyday of The Viper Room.
The reputation of the Viper Room was overshadowed by a terrible tragedy, early on, with the passing of River Phoenix, just outside it's doors. A dark cloud replaced the good times and the local clientele was replaced by tourists toting cameras, snapping away at the young star's final resting place.
Archival Footage and Interviews
We have begun the process collecting archival footage shot at the club, accessing whatever house camera footage is available and shooting new interviews with the clubbers, film-stars, celebrities and rock ‘n’ roll legends who frequented the club.
Viper Room Reunion Concert!
A huge part of the movie will be the first ever Viper Room Reunion Concert that we will stage and film with the help of many of the great acts who played the club back in the day! Intercut within the documentary will be some guaranteed amazing new performances and collaborations that will help celebrate and memorialize this truly special place. After helping make this documentary a reality and watching the finished movie you will truly be able to say that you are now a “Friend Of The Viper Room”!
Interviewees (listed alphabetically):
Below is a list of some of the folks we either already interviewed or plan to interview for the film:
Adam Duritz and Ben Mize of Counting Crows
Chuck E. Weiss [interviewed]Ö
D.H. Pellligro of Dead Kennedys
Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters
Dave Navarro of Jane’s Addiction/Chili Peppers
Dick Rude of Repo Man
Gibby Haynes of Butthole Surfers
Guns ‘N’ Roses
Harry Dean Stanton
Joe Santiago of The Pixies
John Taylor of Duran Duran
Keith Morris of The Circle Jerks
Martyn Lenoble of Porno For Pyros
Masters Of Reality
Michael Des Barres
Norman Reedus of The Walking Dead [interviewed]Ö
Pete Weiss & Bob Forrest of Thelonious Monster
Scott Weiland of Stone Temple Pilots
Simon Le Bon
Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols
The Pussycat Dolls
The Red Hot Chili Peppers
Tommy Stinson of The Replacements
Fallout Entertainment is our project’s production company and has been up and running for the last twenty-five years, making feature films, music videos and commercials. An amazing production team is working on this project, led by Bill Fishman, owner of Fallout.
Your Contribution Of Funds Your contribution of funds will enable us to continue shooting and complete principle photography of the film. We have many cool rewards, all project-related, for supporting the production of our documentary film. Check out the rewards column for more details. Please remember that Kickstarter will only allow us to accept your contribution to fund filming if we meet our ultimate financial goal. If we fall short of that goal, we cannot accept any of the funds raised, here on Kickstarter, to make our movie. So, please take note that nothing is too little or too much.
Risks and challenges
There is always the possibility that we won’t get all of our interviews within the target date, planned. We are interviewing a lot of celebrities who have tight schedules. This could push back our release date, a little. The same goes with coordinating the Viper Room Reunion Concert; we have more than one popular musical artist, performing, so, coordinating their schedules will be a bit challenging, but since we will only need them for one night, we are confident that we will be able to, ultimately, coordinate this without too much difficulty. Most of the obvious risks and challenges of producing a documentary film are pretty much eliminated since I’ve had Fallout Entertainment help me on my way into production with Friends Of The Viper Room. Because of their generosity and others, I’ve been able to shoot my first interviews with an incredible crew and cut together rare footage and photos from back in the day, with a great editor on our Kickstarter trailer. The funds that are raised, here on Kickstarter, will carry us through the bulk of our interviews. We will be able to pay our crew to shoot the remaining interviews with Viper Room insiders, significant musical performances around town and our Viper Room Reunion Concert. As you can see, there is a ton of support from entertainment industry professionals plus everyone and everything we need to shoot is right here in Los Angeles, hence, we are able to keep many of our production costs down. Securing distribution is usually, also a challenge, but we already have a couple of major distributors interested in the project.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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