ReelDreams Productions wrapped principal photography on their second film The Tenant this past Saturday, August 2nd in greater Orlando. The production team headed by Randy Molnar and Melissa Gruver shot at a house in Lake Helen and the UCF Soundstage in downtown Orlando. This was a co-production with 1673 East Films.
There were a few faces from out of town, but almost everyone on this production is from Florida. Two of the actors are from California. One is the famous face from the original 1977 classic The Hills Have Eyes, Michael Berryman. Bill Cobbs (Night at the Museum, The Ultimate Gift) was also part of the cast.
Some of the local faces include leads J La Rose from Saw III & IV. He's the guy in Saw III that pulls the hooks out of his body, but still gets blown up by the teddy bear bomb at the beginning of the movie. He's worked quite a bit with the director of those movies Darren Bousman who studied at Full Sail. Other local actors include Randy Molnar (Larry The Cable Guy: Health Inspector, Contract Killers), Sylvia Boykin (Recount), John Kyle (Black Water, The Woods Have Eyes), the WB girl Aerica D'Amaro (Misconceptions, Road Trip), Georgia Chris (100 Tears, Black Water), and Justin Smith (As The World Turns). Also, John Archer Lundgren plays a small role in the movie, but he has been in almost every movie made in Central Florida during the past couple years and it must be noted somewhere. He's so famous, he may start getting his own ringtones.
On the other side of the camera, Ric La Monte penned the script as well as directed the pic. Behind the Sony CineAlta camera and Panasonic lenses was DP Jose Cassella who also worked with Melissa and Randy on Second Coming, which shot in Orlando.
The crew was also filled with many locals. Some of the crew were young faces from the local film schools including Full Sail, UCF, and Valencia Community College, while working next to regulars like Costume Designer Beverly Safier, Stunt Coordinator Dave Kramer, and 1st AD/Producer Jaime Velez-Soto.
A new generation of filmmakers is coming up through the ranks from the local film schools like the UPM on this shoot Andrew Kenneth Gay and AC Alix Duggins.
Rounding out the horror flick was the special effects crew flown in from LA's TechWorks Studios. Some of their credits include I Am Legend, War of The Worlds, Men in Black, The Ring, Spiderman 2, Minority Report, and Batman Forever.
The Tenant follows the story of a simple man, Dr. Walter Newman, who has high aspirations to cure all disease through genetic manipulation. His obsession with his mission draws him deeper into his own dark world, distracting him from his wife Olivia and from his responsibilities to his patients at the Edgewood Asylum. The doctor's loyal but diabolical nurse, Ms. Tinsley, decides to take matters into her own hands, and in secret she conducts her own experiment. When Dr. Newman realizes what has been done, it is far too late. A deformed creature that defies nature is created. It is part human and part nightmare. Dr. Newman knows what he must do, but it may already be too late.
I visited the set at the UCF Soundstage on Wednesday, July 23rd. There are pictures from that day in the PhotoSeen.
You can also see production photos and more at www.thetenantthemovie.com.