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Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Hollywood Interview: Kurt Russell

Here is the latest from friend, and guest blogger, Alex Simon! Read his great interview with Kurt Russell!


By Alex Simon

If you’re a guy of a certain age (think Gen X), Kurt Russell was that actor you discovered as a child who wasn’t just a familiar face on the big and small screen, he was your buddy you grew up with. Not a peer, necessarily, but the cool, slightly older kid who lived next door who you just knew, if you played your cards right, you might grow up to be: handsome, self-assured in sports, with girls and in your place on the planet. Especially if you could hang out with him on a regular basis and learn the tricks to his magic, and magic was something Kurt Russell had from the beginning.

The son of the late actor Bing Russell, best remembered as Deputy Sheriff Clem Foster on Bonanza, Kurt literally grew up on a soundstage, watching his father brandish six-guns in a series of western movies and television shows. Since making his acting debut on TV in 1961, Russell has literally not stopped working, allowing his fans the rare privilege of watching him grow up before their eyes, from the tyke who kicked Elvis Presley’s shins in It Happened at the World’s Fair, to the star of countless Disney movies and TV specials, the most iconic being teen inventor Dexter Riley in a trilogy of films (The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes, Now You See Him Now You Don’t, The Strongest Man in the World) that were box office hits and later found a long shelf life on television.

When his tenure as a child star ended, Russell focused on his primary passion: baseball, playing minor league ball (second base) for the California Angels’ AA team. Russell was hitting .563 in 1973, and looked like he might be going to “the show,” but a torn shoulder muscle ended his baseball career the same year. To keep his acting chops fresh, Russell decided to turn his fresh-faced, all-American boy image on its head with the 1975 tele-film The Deadly Tower, in which he played infamous sniper Charles Whitman, who in 1966 barricaded himself in a tower at University of Texas. An ex-Marine, Whitman killed over a dozen people, and wounded more than double that number. The movie was a critical smash and Kurt Russell was suddenly an actor to be reckoned with, a status that was cemented four years later with his portrayal of the titular character in John Carpenter’s TV movie Elvis. Russell and Carpenter went on to collaborate on a series of films that have all grown into cult classics: Escape From New York, The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China and Escape from L.A. (which Russell also wrote).

Kurt Russell marks his fifty-third year in the biz with The Art of the Steal, playing Crunch Calhoun, a washed up motorcycle daredevil and semi-reformed thief who agrees to one final score with his ne’er do-well younger brother (Matt Dillon). The Radius TWC release also stars Terence Stamp, Jay Baruchel, Katheryn Winnick, Chris Diamantopoulos, Kenneth Welsh, and Jason Jones. It is currently available on VOD and hits theaters March 12.

Kurt Russell sat down with Alex Simon recently to discuss his past, present and future. Here’s what transpired:

Visit The Hollywood Interview for the Q & A!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

UPDATE: Giveaway, Monster Energy Supercross, Best IT Racing, Sci-Flyers

The year has started off with a bang! If you haven't entered our Media Logo Giveaway, visit our Facebook page album and choose the logos you like the best. You will automatically be entered to win the book "Lone Survivor" signed by Marcus Luttrell

The giveaway closes tomorrow, Thursday, at midnight PST so get over there and make your choice!

On February 8, we traveled to San Diego to shoot photos at Monster Energy Supercross for the Shadow Works/Frog-X Skydiving Team! If was a great weekend honoring our military. The team had a practice jump into Qualcomm Stadium on Friday, then jumped into the Monster Energy pit Saturday afternoon before the big finale in the stadium for the supercross finals.

It was exciting to see the team drop from the darkness into the stadium as the fans went nuts! Check out the Facebook album for photos. Also, visit the post of Shadow Works owner, Geoff Reeves, for a summery of the event.

A big THANK YOU to Monster Energy for taking good care of us!

We've updated our Twitter page! You can find us here @journey_blue. If you're already following, we're still connected.

Racing season is upon us! We're now managing social media for Best IT Racing! The World Challenge series starts March 28 at the Firestone Grand Prix in St. Petersburg, FL. 

Best IT has a new, and updated, Twitter page at @BestIT_Racing. Take a look at their list of amazing sponsors!

Follow them on Facebook, too. Lots of exciting surprises coming with the start of the new season!

For all of our Sci-Flyers fans....hold tight, we're working hard on the next two episodes! Episode 2 is in visual effects and Episode 3 is making it's way through editing. We're still working on that old school practical surprise that we're excited to reveal soon! 

In the meantime, watch for new promos and introductions to our process and the people that are making this happen! Stay updated on Twitter and Facebook!

If you're missing Stuart, and his team of rag-tag space explorers, let Episode 1 keep you warm and fuzzy!

Friday, December 20, 2013

That's A Wrap For 2013!

It's been super busy since we entered the holiday season! 2013 has been a great year and we have a lot to be thankful for as the year comes to a close.

After launching Episode 1 of "Sci-Flyers", we've been busy on post-production with Episodes 2 and 3. We had a very important part of the show that needed to be ironed out for the next episodes and we're happy to say that we scored! That piece of the puzzle, which will be announced later with Behind The Scenes video coverage, continues along the path of doing what we do in the spirit of "old school" production. We will give you a has to do with something in this production still.

Watch for updates in January on Facebook and Twitter as we get closer to the release of the next two episodes.

I had a great time in Arizona at the Sponsorship Appreciation Dinner for Best IT Racing! The evening started with hot laps at Bondurant. It was exciting to finally get in the car with friend, driver Geoff Reeves, owner of Shadow Works. It's not my first time in a race car, however if you lose your focus even for a second, lunch may not be far behind. We went out for seven laps, and on the fifth, I was feelin' it. It was a great ride and I had a nice bruise on my shoulder as a souvenir! Bondurant is an impressive facility and I'm excited to get back their in the near future. It was a nice evening with sponsors, and the team, celebrating the end of a great racing season!

Photo by Andy Lee

Before heading back to Los Angeles, I followed Shadow Works to Skydive Phoenix to shoot media during a training jump with team mate, Marc Hogue.

We mourn the loss of actor/producer Paul Walker and race car driver Roger Rodas in a car accident on November 30. I met Walker five years ago at a party and he couldn't have been nicer. He was known as a kind, humble, hard worker who was just glad to be working in the industry. Walker started Reach Out Worldwide with a group of friends after seeing the need for skilled personnel and resources in disaster zones. Walker and Rodas were coming from a charity event for the organization when the accident occured.

Roger Rodas was a financial advisor but he was also a seasoned driver and owned Always Evolving, a car customization shop. He and Walker partnered on various racing events like the 25 hours of Thunderhill and the Pirelli World Challenge, where the team was in it's rookie year. Working with Best IT Racing, we were set up next to them in the paddock at the Grand Prix of Long Beach. No doubt they will be missed on the track in 2014. Both leave children, family, friends and many fans behind.

Universal put the production of "Fast and Furious 7" on hold right after the crash. They have now hired Walker's brother, stuntman Cody Walker, to finish remaining scenes. Close-ups of Cody will have Paul's face superimposed digitally. Delays could move the release to Christmas 2014 or summer 2015.

That's a wrap for 2013! Check in with us for announcements coming in the new year that will kick off 2014. It's going to be a great year with lots of fun projects! In January, we're heading back to Winter X Games Aspen with Shadow Works so keep up with our reports from the SuperPipe!

Thank you all for your support.

Have a safe holiday and a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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