Warning: I’m going to come off as a huge nerd in this post. I mean more than usual. You’ve been warned.
Background: Everyone I consider a really good friend knows I love Veronica Mars. It’s part of the orientation package. In order to understand my humor and snarkiness, future friends need to have seen all three seasons of Veronica Mars.
“And let’s not forget Logan Echolls… Every school has an obligatory psychotic jackass. He’s ours.”
I watch my DVD sets pretty regularly. I’ve had marathons over the weekend. Don’t recommended though, because by Sunday, I found myself oozing in bitchiness. When I’m dealing with writer’s block, I put on a DVD and let it play in the background while I write. I know each episode so well that it’s easy to tune it out when I need to.
Now I’m a journalist. I’ve been a paid freelance writer since 2008 starting with the Accent Newspaper. I’ve interviewed many people and I know I’m jaded most of the time. Interviewing actors and filmmakers is not a hard feat.
But I do have my fangirl moments (Hanson at SXSW, cast and director of Hatchet 2 at Fantastic Fest) and being around anyone who was associated with Veronica Mars brings that out.
Set up: I scheduled an interview with the cast and crew of Searching for Sonny during the Austin Film Festival. Jason Dorhing, who played Logan Echolls in Veronica Mars, was scheduled to be at the interview as he is the lead character. I was so nervous (and screaming in glee inside), but he had to fly in later to shoot some scenes for Ringer. So he wasn’t at the interview.
I have to admit I was a little relieved. I knew if he was in our interview, the other cast members and director would have been like “Is this girl even a professional? Why is she giggling?” My only question would have been “Can we just talk about Veronica Mars for an hour?”
I mentioned my fangirl love of Jason Dohring during the interview and all three of them were understanding and said “You’ll meet him tonight (at the premiere). He’s one of the nicest guys ever.” Oh god. No, I couldn’t, but I know this would probably be my only chance. I had to be reminded to breathe when Hanson walked by. Lord only knows how I would react to Jason Dorhing in the same room as me.
The meet up: At the end of the interview, I told the publicist that I needed to take a photo for the article. He recommended the premiere, but at the première, he asked if we could take the photo at the after party. Then five minutes later, he approaches me and asks if I could take the photo right before the film started. I grab my camera and head to where the film crew was sitting. There he was, Jason Dohring.
While we were waiting for everyone to gather around, he puts out his hand and says “Hey, I’m Jason.” Oh.my.god. I wish I could say that I was ultra-smooth and shook his hand and said my name. I want to say I keep my fangirl inside.
Nope, that didn’t happen. Well the handshaking did, but I geeked out and looked away with a big dorky smile on my face just because he looked at me (I’ll have to show you my reaction in person). I don’t think I even told him my name. Brian, one of the actors from the interview, told me “Look him in the eye” and I said “I can’t.” I glanced back at him and he was just smiling that infamous smile which made me freak out more. So embarrassing.
“Sorry, I’m a huge Veronica Mars fan and you’re my favorite character.” He said thank you and we started chatting about Veronica Mars’ creator Rob Thomas ‘ upcoming panel the next day until Andrew, the director, told us we had to take the photo.
I went back to my seat and was trying to keep my emotions in check. I was in public after all, but I was shaking so bad. My face hurt from smiling so big.
After the movie and Q&A, I went up the people I interviewed. After I talked to Andrew, Jason walked up to me again and said (this by the way is not word for word. I was too giddy to remember exactly what was said, but this was the gist of it) “It was great to meet you. Are you going to the after party? You should.”
Um, yes. If Jason Dohring says I should to go to the after party, dammit, I’m going to that after party. Even though I had plans to attend another film screening or a show happening on the east side.
I said I was and he said “Good. We’ll talk then.”
AHHHH. DYING.ON.THE.INSIDE. God, I’m really sorry. This is so embarrassing that I’m such a fangirl, but this is such a huge deal. If there is one show that’s inspires me to write, it’s this show, and it was cancelled four years ago. This show inspired my NaNoWriMo novel. Yes, I agree that a show about a high school detective sounds incredibly corny, but trust me, it’s more than that. Most of my friends I’ve turned on to this show have become fans. Nothing, not even Glee, had me hooked.
The afterparty: I arrived at the party and of course, he swarmed by other fans, but I waited patiently (and that just made me sound like a stalker… nice). To make a long and probably boring and most importantly embarrassing story short, we ended up chatting for 30 minutes about Veronica Mars and the city of Austin. Definitely hands down, one of the greatest moments of my journalism career. It wasn’t an interview at all, but if it weren’t for that media badge, I wouldn’t have had this opportunity.
He was really nice just like they said. I got to ask him every question I’ve ever wanted to ask. He shared little random details about his career and Searching for Sonny. I learned that he meets with Ryan Hansen so their children can play. I told him I could hear the Veronica Mars fans freaking out that Dick Casablancas’ and Logan Echolls’ children have play dates.
Before I left, we attempted to take our photos together via the MySpace camera-in-the-air technique. The lighting sucked because it was almost midnight and we were outside, so I had to use the flash. A lot of the first photos came out awkward. Some random strangers ended up offering to take our photo.
I was super giddy heading back home. I couldn’t believe that happened. I woke up the next morning wondering if it was a dream. Luckily, I have the photos to prove it. I finally had the chance to talk to one of my favorite actors who played one of my favorite characters on one of my favorite TV shows ever.
Man, I love my job.
Here’s my Q&A with the director and two cast members, who also star in the online series “BriTANick,” from “Searching for Sonny.” I loved this movie by the way, because it just really hilarious. The entire room laughed throughout the film that some jokes were missed.
Natalie, Life & Arts editor from The Accent Newspaper, put it perfectly:
“It’s like Scott Pilgrim (without comic bubbles) and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang had a film baby.”
I’m glad I’m not the only one who thought of Scott Pilgrim when she saw the film.
Oh a sidenote, the interview was way too long that the ending got cut off. That’s fine as it happens but the introduction and the pull quote in the print edition doesn’t have any context. So here’s what was cut off:
NK: The first day, my first scene, it was initially supposed to be me sitting on a couch smoking a bong and they were like “Oh we want it to be you naked on a toilet smoking a bong.” I was like ok. So the first scene that I filmed was me naked on a toilet. Andrew was like “To make you feel better, I’ll get naked.” I was like “You don’t need to do that,” and he did. He got naked.
BM: I remember I was in the living room watching and I was like “oh, what’s going on in the scene over there.” I open the bathroom and look over. Andrew’s just holding himself like this and his t-shirt down giving Nick notes. I was like what the hell is going on. No pants or anything.
Welcome to filmmaking.
BM: That’s what it is.
AD: I think I thought it would make you feel more comfortable, but in retrospect, I don’t know if that’s the way to make somebody feel comfortable.
Might be a little more awkward.
NK: In general in life from now on, if you see someone being uncomfortable, getting naked in front of them…
AD: …is not going to help.
NK: …may take their mind off of whatever. Whatever they’re thinking about.
There’s a lot of the interview that didn’t make the final draft because I had limited space. Maybe I’ll release that eventually. But without further ado, here’s the interview.
Q&A: Cast and Director of Searching for Sonny
by Sarah Vasquez
Originally published on Oct. 26, 2011
Austin Film Festival ends a week filled of film screenings, screenwriting panels, Johnny Depp and James Franco. Searching for Sonny, filmed in Fort Worth, held its world premiere on two nights of packed crowds during the festival. The comedic noir stars Jason Dohring (“Veronica Mars”), Minka Kelly (“Friday Night Lights”), and Brian McElhaney and Nick Kocher (BriTANick). McElhaney, Kocher, and Andrew Disney, writer/director, sat down with UWeekly to talk about the film, what it was like working with some of the more familiar actors and the length Disney will go through to make his actors feel comfortable.
Austin Film Festival starts tomorrow, but because of class, I start Friday. Another busy week ahead of me, but this is going to be fun. Who knows? I might run into Johnny Depp.
And Jason Dohring is coming! For those that know me know how much of a HUGE Veronica Mars fan I am. I own all three seasons on DVD and consistently have weekend-long marathons. Logan Echolls is my favorite character on the show. I might faint if he even looks at me. I’ll let you know how that goes because I have an interview scheduled.
Here’s a preview piece about one of the films showing during the festival by two UT alumni. After the interview, I added the film to my schedule. Can’t wait to see it.
Strings in Austin
New film STRINGS is winning awards everywhere and on its way to Austin Film Festival
By Sarah Vasquez
Originally published on Oct. 19, 2011
Strings seems to win an award at every film festival it’s screened at. At the Tulsa International Film Festival and the Long Island International Film Expo, directors Mark Dennis and Ben Foster won Best Director. At the White Sands International Film Festival and Breckenridge Film Festival, the film won the Audience Award. And the list just goes on. Not bad for these filmmakers’ debut.