by Mark Bessenger [Director]
On a movie night out with Sam Park, I had asked his opinion about the value of having a horror celebrity as part of the cast. I knew it couldn't be someone too big, because of our budget, and I wasn't sure if I needed anyone at all. Sam thought it couldn't hurt, and if I could afford someone, I should try and get someone. We ran through a list of possibilities: Tony Todd, Josh Leonard, Clu Gulager, Thom Mathews, Niciholas Brendan, Trent Haaga, etc. Then it came to me: I knew exactly who to ask and I was sure he'd say yes. More on that, later...
Recently, my mother in the midwest had a pacemaker put in, and I visited her for the operation. I also used the visit as an excuse to do some location scouting. We needed a junkyard that would accommodate us, and it so happened that my cousin had recently married a guy whose father owned a scrapyard! They took me on a tour of the place and it seemed as though it would work very well. They had buildings for the junkyard manager's office, piles of scrap, large clearings for the truck to be parked in and told us we could shoot all night long and all day on Sunday. They also had a large office building with a kitchen and recreation space that we could use for eating meals and as makeup rooms! Perfect! Wait, not perfect, how much would it cost for them to let us shoot there for 3 weeks? Nothing? Perfect!
Even better, my cousin's brother-in-law had a truck company and would let us use his semi-truck and trailer for free, too! We were saving loads on our budget. The shooting dates weren't set yet, but it would be June, I thought. On the way back to my parents' house, we passed a little truck stop cafe that would be perfect for the one in the script. My father said he thought the owners would have no problem letting us shoot there, as they only served breakfast and lunch and closed at 3pm every day!
Everything seemed to be coming together. I needed a trestle bridge, but the one I remembered growing up had been torn down and replaced by a simple concrete one. I found that there was another one in a national park, but the road was snowed over, so we couldn't see it.
As I flew back to California, I was pretty happy that things seemed to be going so easily. Now it was time to start looking at actors and holding auditions, but how would I do that? And where?
To be continued...