Talks & Interviews — April 25, 2014 at 3:43 pm

Real nightmare on set of independent action film (exclusive)


Not always everything goes smoothly on set of an independent feature film – especially in case with an independent film.

Sometimes it is money-related issues, and sometimes it is human factor. Like in case with independent action film “Assassin’s Fury”. This is one of those cases, when making a wrong choice can be costly, and not just on screen.

“Assassin’s Fury” tells a story of ex special forces soldier Susan George, who spent the last few years of her life working for mysterious and powerful organization called Canberra. Observation, mercenary missions, assassinations – Susan has done it all but when she meets and marries John, Susan decides to leave her past behind and live peaceful life with her husband and his teenage daughter Katrina. They move to a small southern town to start from the scratch but Susan’s past will come back to haunt her sooner than she could ever realize. When Canberra’s most skilled and fearsome assassin follows her lead, Susan will have to use all her strength and field experience to save the people she loves the most by turning quiet town into arena of blood.

Veteran independent director David Prior is once again directing the film, with Fabio Soldani producing it. The two have worked before on “Night Claws”, “Relentless Justice”, “Deadliest Prey”, however, according to Soldani, they never had so much headache as they did with “Assassin’s Fury”.

“Chelan Simmons was my original choice for the role of Susan George(a tribute to legendary British actress intended),” Fabio Soldani told BZFilm.

Commenting on online rumors that Willa Ford was part of the cast in the film, Soldani confirmed it, saying that “Willa Ford was indeed in the movie playing the lead villain ‘Lauren Reed'”.

assassins-fury-2“But we were forced to replace her after 5 shooting days.I was forced to fire her,” he added.

Soldani went on to add that he didn’t want to get into too much into details, but said generally Ford was “a nightmare to be around and it made the shoot a really sad place to be for those 5 days”.

“I can say that because once she was gone, everything changed to normal and the rest of the shoot went in a great, nice atmosphere like we always have on our sets,” Soldani added, admitting that having Ford was his own personal failure.

“It was my decision to make last minute offer to her when we were 2 weeks away from the shoot. I keep saying that this particular part was cursed because It was the only role we had so many problems with,” he said.

“I had 3 strong punches in the face because there were 3 actresses who were absolute priority to me. All of them were perfect for this part and all of them are absolutely amazing at their craft. I was damaged for over 2 weeks when I lost actress from Australia who wanted to do it but in the end couldn’t. After few other failed attempts I approached Willa because I knew her from ‘Anna Nicole’ and ‘Impulse’ and I was convinced that she could act. She agreed really fast and the rest is history,” he said.

On the other hand, according to Soldani, Cynthia Murell, who replated Willa Ford, “turned out to be a lucky shot”.

“I never saw her in anything but her pictures brought my attention for some reason. I could feel strong screen presence so I decided to put my money on her. Cynthia was working on another movie in New York at the same time but luckily for us, they managed to reschedule her days and she could join us. This wonderful, brave girl had virtually no time to prepare and yet she gave such a strong performance,” he noted.

Speaking of Ford, Soldani said he just wanted to forget the whole thing.

“I did my share of movies, worked with many actors, name and no names and never had a real problem with any of them,” he said. “David (Prior), the director, was shocked. He was involved in almost 50 movies and they never had any problems like that.”

“But then again, we work with real actors, not singers, celebrities, tv personalities who turned to acting and there is a huge difference,” Soldani added.

“Assassin’s Fury” is still in production, and as Soldani said, there will be re-shoots.

“David Prior is looking at the footage right now. He needs to figure out what exactly we have to shoot again and how many days will it take and then obviously – the most painful part – budgeting,” Soldani said. “There is also possibility that I will shoot some additional material in Europe.”

The film stars quite a lot of familiar actors, including William Sanderson (Deadwood, Lone Wolf McQuade, Fight for Your Life), Mark Rolston (Rush Hour, Eraser RoboCop 2 ), and Ted Prior (Deadly Prey, The Final Sanction).

“Mark Rolston’s character is one of the key characters and for sure, most important male character in the film,” Soldani said. “William Sanderson’s character is a surprise but he is important too”

Speaking of Ted Prior, Soldani said “he’s in the film and he plays Captain Campbell, commander of the special police force sent to help the lead heroine”.

“Prior’s part is not a very big part but he will have his share of action. On the other hand, we can’t forget that this is really ladies show. Most of the characters in the film are females,” he said.

Soldani has also been working on a short drama titled “Way of Redemption”, starring Tess Panzer and Marco St. John. The film follows a female detective, who has to face the consequences that she made in the past.

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