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MEET KIT LANG: CO-WRITER/PRODUCER & STAR OF “BATTLE SCARS” FEATURE FILM COMING SOON TO A SCREENING PLATFORM NEAR YOU!

10+ years ago during the Toronto Int’l Film Festival, I met a young up-and-coming actor, Christopher “Kit” Lang, in the bar of the Four Seasons Hotel where I always set up shop during the festival meeting actors, filmmakers, the money men and media reps from around the world. I remember Kit’s enthusiasm and excitement for being part of the annual schmooze-fest and over the years since then, I’ve watched his career progress through shorts, tv appearances and now as star of a major feature film, Battle Scars.Kit blueThe handsome actor transforms himself to play the war-weary Michael Delucca, a Vietnam vet who’s trying to cope with PTSD amidst a troubled and violent civilian life – checkout the trailer on the website: www.BattleScarsthemovie.com  I had the pleasure of chatting with Kit who shared his thoughts on the film, and taking on co-writing and co-producing roles as well as acting.

Congratulations on your inspired performance as Mike DeLucca in Battle Scars – from what past experiences or influences did you draw on to portray DeLucca’s intense internal struggles?   Thank you so much. In short, for me, research was an absolute must. What do I know about being a combat veteran? I was fortunate to have our director, Sam, a combat veteran himself,  to guide me through that. In particular spending time with Veterans and visiting the Fort Hamilton Veteran’s Hospital was instrumental.Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 2_45_03 PMDid you and your fellow actors have to endure “boot camp” or any other bonding experience in order to make the battle scenes seem authentic? Ha ha…yes we did actually…of sorts. We were driven to upstate New York, led into the woods with very minimal gear (it rained!) and for four days we had to “survive”, build a shelter, go on mock patrols, and various training “war-like” scenarios, do a fire watch every night (taking turns staying awake and alert while the others slept) and so on. It was absolutely a great bonding experience. And it’s amazing how close we all got in such a short period of time.14054901_1079885625399702_8534525803781222453_nYour performance as the PTSD-afflicted Mike may trigger memories for real-life Vets in the audience – any advice how to be on guard when watching the film if a viewer suffers his own PTSD flashbacks or issues? Actually, no I don’t. But you raise an important point and question. I think PTSD is such a misunderstood, invisible disease that it’s not easy to fit neatly into a box. It’s very different for everybody, and I feel truly honored to be a part of telling this story and helping raise awareness of this mental health issue. That being said, the feedback we’ve received from Vets is that this film, if anything, is very therapeutic for them, so stick with it… But if anything was to trigger a PTSD attack, what I can say is having witnessed this myself and it working well: just pause the film, walk away and get some air, then come back to it when you’re ready.107036104_579583282951131_1585574476818428294_nYou also pulled off some sensitive, intimate romantic scenes in the film – what do you enjoy most as an actor, the challenges of a brutal shoot ‘em up scene or the love scenes…and why?  Thank you, I appreciate that. I think any actor will tell you that romantic scenes are the most challenging and difficult. Most of the time you’re having to work with someone you’ve never met before, complete strangers! And then you have to create this believable intimacy. It’s really, really difficult. But it also comes with the territory, just part of the job. I’ve been fortunate to work with fantastic actors and that makes the work so much easier. But action is actually much, much easier to perform and more fun, too! Haa haa14045765_1077570962297835_6578143147299403050_nYou’re also co-writer and co-producer on Battle Scars – what was the most difficult or challenging job and why?  There’s so much to unpack here, but in a sentence, I’d say as a writer: The most difficult part was really nailing the voice and message of PTSD. It took a lot of research and work, as it should, to figure out the best way we could embed it into the story.

As a producer: I’d say the most challenging job for me as a producer was simply producing, period. Shout out to every indie filmmaker out there. It’s a VERY difficult job. And you’re having to constantly troubleshoot. I remember one shoot day for instance – we unfortunately fell behind in our schedule and we were about to lose a whole scene, but we realized we had a second camera, so we decided we could split the crew into two units and get what we needed. Coming up with solutions, that’s the job. And it’s VERY hard to do non-stop, but well worth it! I think. You have to be crazy enough and love movies enough to do this.facebook_1593761671169_6684720952432404925What’s next for actor Kit or writer Kit?I’m working on an English/Spanish horror-romance film shot and set in Mexico. We were set to resume filming but we’re still waiting for Covid to subside down there, hopefully soon!

Thanks, Kit, for sharing your experiences and thoughts on portraying this troubled character. Due to Covid-19 cinema closures, the film will not be enjoying it’s originally planned theatrical release, however, Battle Scars is available for DVD sales from Walmart & Amazon as of July 21st (you can pre-order now via the film’s Facebook page – see link bottom of web home page) and will be available for online viewing/streaming August 4th, 2020.  THANKS FOR SUPPORTING INDIE FILM!

https://battlescarsthemovie.com/

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BREADCRUMBS POSTER_new

EXCITING NEW CDN WRITER/ACTOR FILMS LATEST SHORT IN TORONTO

Just as I was watching the opening scenes of I,Robot on tv this past week, I got a call from Taylor Martin (pictured below), a multi-talented young woman who had just completed a 1-day shoot with my producer colleagues over at RDG Entertainment Inc. for a short film called “Breadcrumbs”.  On my tv screen, the scene was unfolding where Will Smith’s futuristic cop character was talking about “breadcrumbs…like Hansel & Gretel”, left for him as clues by the James Cromwell scientist character….synchronicity or what?!

Taylor martin 1Taylor told me about her experience of working with a professional crew and cast, seeing/hearing her script come to life, and playing one of the main characters, too.  The storyline is: When Gretchen met Luke everything seemed to be perfect, however, his adoration turned to obsession. She moves on and creates a new life only to discover that he has not. Gretchen is reminded that the past is never far behind. You can almost hear the sinister music playing in the background…dum dum dummmm.  So I asked her about the process and here is what she told me:

Growing up, you’ve been a dancer, model, gymnast, soccer player, martial arts practitioner….so what inspired you to seek a career in film?  I believe it started when DVD’s first came out and they often included a second disc with all the special features and background footage.  I can’t remember what movie it was, but I was completely blown away by “the making of” or “behind the scenes” section.  All of a sudden, my interests started to expand towards the creation side as well as the acting side.

As an actor, writer, director….what challenges you the most and why?  As an actor, if someone isn’t willing to “let go”, “be in the moment” and “be honest” with their intentions in a scene, I find that challenging to respond.  No different then the work of a relationship.  As a writer, it’s making sure everything flows properly, and not quelling too much on one thing.  Everything has a purpose, connects, and catches people’s attention.

11077927_663963547040783_5007723645388393253_nThe 5’11” strawberry blonde enjoys the glamour of acting in her own indie films (above)

For your latest short film, Breadcrumbs, you enlisted the production assistance of Rafael Kalamat and Jason Barbeck of Reel Deal Guys Entertainment (http://reeldealguys.com/) – what did they bring to the film and how quickly was it made?  They brought everything that is needed to actually shoot the film.  With their persistence, professionalism, team work, and dedication to the overal look and feel of the film, it was shot within one day.  I really couldn’t have asked for a better team, and that goes for the cast as well.  I’m the kind of filmmaker that wants to get things done when it’s that time.  I think that’s why a short film that could’ve been filmed over a two day period was done in one day because it was “GO, GO, GO”.  We ran a tight ship, and the atmosphere on the set actually fit into the filmmaking process.

11062314_663370900433381_5720500104321403121_nAbove, Rafael (left) & Jason (right) of RDG busy working out close-up shots

Tell us about Breadcrumbs – what’s it about, what was your inspiration for writing it and how much, if any, of it is biographical?  Breadcrumbs is about the drama that occurs in complicated relationships that should’ve ended a while ago.  My inspiration for it came from my own experiences and watching friends or relatives go through it.  All of it is biographical, but as a filmmaker I jazzed it up….and changed the names, of course.

10422979_663370860433385_2966626930667701247_n Alexis StaceyWere you involved in the casting process….and tell us a little about your lead actors?  I take charge and will always take charge of the casting process.  They are MY films, and therefore I’M the one who has the last say in the matter.  I will show co-producers the audition tapes from the actors I’ve chosen to play the roles, but that’s it.  I run my own ship but I’ll always need help to actually set sail.  I’ve known my lead actors (pictured above) for quite some time and they both enjoy these types of films.  I had asked for both their demo-reels when I was initially creating Breadcrumbs before I even told them about it.  I knew their acting chops were exactly what I was looking for, for the characters of “Luke” played by Stacey Unsworth and “Gretchen” portrayed by Alexis Uiga, so when I watched their reels, it was thirty seconds into them that I thought “yeah, I want them. I don’t need to watch anymore”.

Once post-production is completed, where will Breadcrumbs be shown? Any plans for the film fest circuit? Yes, we plan to submit it to as many festivals as we can.  The only footage of the film that will posted on social media for everyone to watch will be teaser trailer(s) of the film.  I hope to have, at most, two teasers since the film is going to be around the five minute mark.

11069621_663964133707391_5080895202076369952_nWhat’s next on your to do list?  The RDG guys and I were talking about making Breadcrumbs into a feature length film so I’ve begun the writing process on that – mostly writing down ideas for tying things together, since there will be lots of questions about the short film.  I’m also in the brain storming process with two other films.  So far everything I’m writing is action based, probably due to my martial arts background.

_MG_0528How can people follow your career? You can follow me on Facebook here: http://on.fb.me/1BG5X4F 

Taylor Martin 2Good luck, Taylor, I know you’ll have a lot of Canadian film fans cheering you on, wanting to see more of your work and celebrating women screenwriters and filmmakers.