Friday, 8 June 2018

Interview with filmmaker Kyle Acosta

Rightways Down will be screening at Straight Jacket Guerrilla Film Festival

*How did you get into making films?
I've been in love with film since before I could walk. I made my first film with my father at the age of four with an old JVC VHS camcorder, and haven't stopped since. My real start however, as a director, was in theater when I was fifteen. At the Denair Gaslight Theater for a production of Arsenic and Old Lace, a personal favorite of mine. After an eight year run directing various theater productions, I returned my focus to my true passion; motion pictures and I produced and directed my first two feature films: Assassin (2009) and Children's Games (2012) 

*What inspired you to make your movie?
I was first inspired to make Rightways down after an existential philosophy course I took in college. The characters and events are loosely based on real people that I know and situations that they went through. I changed names and developed fictional characters based off the characteristics of the real people. I felt compelled  to tell a story that didn't have an antagonist or protagonist. I simply wanted to make a film about people, and not focus on whether they are morally good or bad. Hero or villain. But instead on whether they are relatable and interesting enough to want to see them overcome their obstacles and to see how it changes them from the moment we meet them to the moment they crossed the finish line. 

*How has your style evolved?
I would have to say I am constantly evolving my style as I work and I try to learn more from each project I undertake. I always set out to make something different than before. 

*Tell us any strange or funny stories while making the film?
When J. Adam Young (Charlie Barker) signed on to the project, on the first day of filming after many takes, Director (Kyle Acosta) called an hour lunch break while he taught Young how to swear. The actor was reluctant at first but then found confort in his character and allowed his natural transformation into Charlie Barker. Months after principle photography wrapped. Director Kyle Acosta was in the editing room with Excecutive  Producer Jeffery Genet, when a clip of Mr. Young came on and they heard him deliver one of his more colorful lines. Mr. Acosta then frowned at this and said to Mr. Genet: 'I think we've done something wrong here. I think we may have ruined a good man'. Mr. Acosta then called Mr. Young and personally apologized for teaching and making him use such foul language in the film. Mr. Young then jokingly replied in Barker's voice 'Grow some balls ya tosser'. Then hung up.  

*The Misrule Film Movement & Pink8 manifesto bring what to mind?
Pink 8 manifesto brings personal heroes to mind. Great directors whom I look up to and try to learn as much as I can from. Not just in the style of their art but the ethics, work, and sheer passion and non conformity that paved the way for independent and underground film culture.  Directors such as the great John Cassavettes, Ken Russell, Terrence Malick, Jean luc Goddard, Nicolas Roeg, Dennis Hopper and many more. All of whom in one way or another helped shape and develop my own personal love and passion for films.

*What can we expect from your next film?
In spring of 2019 I will be going into pre-production for my next feature film: The Duke. Which will be filmed on location in Las Vegas, Nevada. The film is set to open in the Fall of next year.