Local actor scouts independent movie extras in Newark
Published: Tuesday, May 8, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 02:05
“The Middle” actor Charlie McDermott recruited extras for his independent film “ImagiGARY” last week at Klondike Kate’s.
McDermott, 22, of West Chester, Pa., has appeared in movies like “Hot Tub Time Machine,” “Sex Drive” and “Frozen River,” as well as the television series “The Middle,” in which he plays the annoying older brother Axl.
McDermott says his character in the comedy “Hot Tub Time Machine” was one of his favorite acting roles.
“I love comedy,” McDermott says. “Any comedy that is completely improvised is what I enjoyed.”
Wednesday’s event was a casting call for extras for “ImagiGARY,” a comedy about a college freshman who rediscovers his imaginary friend. The film is set to start filming in McDermott’s hometown this week.
Nate Hartley, 20, who wrote the script for the film, says the idea came to him after his own imaginary friend, Jeff, died playing a game of Simon Says in 1999.
“I’ve opened up my own imaginary nonprofit to warn imaginators [about] the dangers of playing Simon Says with your imaginary friends,” Hartley says. “You can donate imaginary money at any time from any place just by thinking about it.”
Hartley says the two-year production of “ImagiGARY” was a memorable experience.
“‘ImagiGARY’ has changed my life from the beginning,” he says. “From its genesis, I’ve learned so much. Writing, rewriting, re-rewriting, re-re-rewriting, casting—it’s been quite the adventure.”
Temple University student Chris Romano, 21, who came to audition as an extra, says appearing in “ImagiGARY” would be a way to break into the film industry.
“Ever since I was younger, I just loved [acting], and when I got older, I really got into it,” Romano says. “I want to get back into acting.”
For some of his bigger roles, McDermott says he prepares months in advance so he can feel what the character feels. He once asked his parents to drop him off in the woods for the night in order to embrace the emotions of fear and terror for a role in the film “Disappearances.”
McDermott advises students who are interested in acting and filming not to be discouraged by the entertainment industry.
“If you wanna do it, go for it,” he says. “Just be prepared for a lot of hard work and rejection.”