Anderson Paul and David Owens’ “Stuck” finds five friends stranded out in the middle of nowhere thanks to their broken down car. But the focus here isn’t on how exactly they’re going to get going again, but on how they all wound up stuck in the middle of the desert together. Get ready for tales of sex, drugs and a guy made out of rubber.
We recently spoke with Anderson Paul and David Owens about how they got “Stuck”.
When did you guys decide to become filmmakers?
David: I developed obsessions with movies and comedy at a very early age.
Anderson: Coming from stage acting I was always studying films for acting tips. And I could never get over the fact that seeing a movie that really got to you could mess you up for days, almost giving you a different perspective on life. Stage theater never got to me like that.
What was the first film you ever made?
David: In the seventh and eighth grades, I made several short films with my friend Travis where we would re-enact “Wayne’s World” and “Sprockets” sketches from Saturday Night Live. Earlier, in the third through fifth grades, I wrote stage adaptations of the films “Spies Like Us” and “The Blues Brothers”. In college, my roommates and I made a horror film called “Kid”, about a murderous demented kid who was played by “Stuck” actor Scott Bresson.
Anderson: I made a fake wrestling show in my backyard when I was 13. We never had a movie camera growing up so I only had dreams. Now I know people who have cameras. “Stuck” is my first feature as a director. I have acted in some shorts and features.
What brought about the creation of “Stuck”?
We came up with the seed of the idea in September of 1999. David wrote and revised the screenplay from September through December and then he and Paul started shooting in January of 2000. Production completed in early February of 2000 and we edited off and on for several months, which was followed by several more months of post-production music and sound mixing. We finally showed it to cast, crew and friends in December of 2001. Throughout 2002 we submitted it to film festivals and it premiered in February of 2003 at the San Francisco Independent Film Festival.
The budget was somewhere between $2,000 and $3,000. We failed at math. It took about 5 weeks to shoot and several months to edit because our schedules didn’t allow for us to work on it full-time.
What’s it all about?
“Stuck” is about five twentysomethings who are each stuck at crossroads in their lives. The main message is that life can be chaotic, and sometimes in order to conquer the chaos, one has to embrace it.
How did you go about casting?
Most of the roles were written with actors in mind, people we knew from the theatre department at college and from other productions we had worked on. Most of the actors we originally wanted signed on.
What do you think drew the actors to the script?
We hope it was because they thought it was funny and good. Almost all of them had worked with one or both of us in theatre and liked working with us and trusted us. Many of them had never worked on a film before, so that probably had something to do with it.
Any problems arise during production?
We faced the same problems that most film shoots experience. Bad weather, jet noise, running out of light, scheduling problems. The only horror story we remember is this masked guy with a chainsaw kept coming on the set and hacking people up. That was frustrating but we rolled with it.
What festivals has “Stuck” screened? Did it win any awards?
In actuality, it screened at the San Francisco Independent Film Festival. And in one of our fantasies it screened at Sundance and Cannes. It won several awards (in our fantasy).
What’s up next for the both of you?
David: I’m working on developing new ideas and screenplays. I’m also in my fourth year of producing the San Francisco Sketch Comedy Festival and occasionally perform with the sketch comedy group Totally False People, which was featured at the 2004 HBO U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen.
Anderson: I’m trying to write a horror film with a friend of mine. Look out for my “untitled” project! Also, on the dvd, I recently made a short called “The Grove” Check it out.
What made you decide to release “Stuck” on Film Threat DVD?
We worked long and hard on this movie with little money, but a lot of heart. I always felt there was an audience for this type of project. Truth is, there’s a lot of movies out there and I felt all we needed was a good niche audience to see it.
“Stuck” is now available at the Film Threat Shop!