Interviews - Movies

Dameon Clarke – In the Rush

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Q.  What are some of the current projects that you’ve been working on?

A.  I’m currently doing voiceovers for a couple of cartoons. Also, it’s pilot season right now, so I’m taking a lot of appointments with casting directors, directors and producers for all of the shows that are gearing up in the new year. This time of year in Los Angeles is absolutely nuts. I’m also in development with a writer-producer friend of mine on this feature film called “High Moon” a horror, comedy. We hope to be filming in a couple of months. Other than that I just finished guest spots on “CSI Miami” and “Criminal Minds” and a war film called Patriot: Friction Factor directed by Carl Weathers.

Q.  What can you tell us about the premise for the film A Scanner Darkly and your character Mike?

A.  Without giving too much away, with regards to the film, A Scanner Darkly is a film set in the future wherein society gets hooked on a narcotic called Substance D. I can’t tell you how, but my character, along with Keanu and Winona’s characters, is mixed up in this world of drugs and corruption and things take a turn in the end that you’ll never see coming! You’ll have to see the movie to find out what happens! Woody Harrelson and Robert Downey Jr. are also central characters in the story that add further layers and sub-plots to an already fascinating story.

Q.  What made you want to be a part of this project?

A.  So many things, working with Richard Linklater has always been a dream of mine. The script is brilliant and not to mention working with the cast, my God, what an incredible opportunity. It way truly a gift getting to work with those guys. All that’s more than enough reason for me to want to be a part of this incredible film. I’d have to be insane to not want to do it!  Also, I’ve always had a bit of a crush on Winona since Heathers!

Q.  What is it like getting to work with director Richard Linklater?

A.  It was awesome. He is not only a very gifted comedic director with movies such as School of Rock and Dazed and Confused, he’s also a great dramatic director as well as he’s shown with films like Before Sunset and Before Sunrise.  I mention those last two just because they were so intensely character driven He’s very vivid and a real actor’s director, as well a great helmsman. It was an amazing experience getting to work with him.

Q.  Do you have a most memorable moment from working on this movie?

A.  My most memorable moment working on this film, aside from one of the extras getting really weird with me (laughs), was how incredibly supportive everyone was, from the cast to Richard. Also working at such a fast pace. We shot digitally so there wasn’t any real set-up or down time between shots, so there was no time to re-set or gather yourself between takes. We shot take after take in a series, so it’d be like “Okay, cut, go again. This time let’s change this and this.” I’m paraphrasing obviously but it was pretty hairy. I remember Keanu asking me “Have shot at this pace before?” We were both kept on our toes that’s for sure. It was a great exercise. 

Q.  There are a lot of notable actors in the film.  Was there a lot of chemistry between them on the set?

A.  I worked solely with Keanu and Winona so I can’t comment on how the rest of cast interacted (but I saw some footage and it looks like there was plenty of chemistry!). As far as the three of goes, there was a lot of chemistry and I was thrilled with that. It started right away in rehearsals, both Keanu and Winona were very giving and receptive. Such a great start! I think that is a huge part of what makes this an amazing project. I thought Winona and I had a real connection which was extremely important. Our characters have a long history together with a lot of underlying sub-text, so I was thrilled to have that connection and that’s totally due to her.

Q.  Why should viewers take the time to see this film?

A.  Why shouldn’t they is the question! I can’t even get into how awesome it’s going to be. The performances, the story, not only that but the style in which the movie is presented, totally rotoscoped. Right from the get go, your working with a great story adapted from a novel by Philip K. Dick, an amazing author (Blade Runner). The material is incredibly engaging, the screenplay is filled with twists and turns. Take that and add Richard’s direction and the animated style in which the film is presented and you’re left with one heck of a film! This is a movie that breaks a lot of ground in it’s style, there’s nothing out there like it.

Q.  What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

A.  I enjoy getting out to hills in Los Angeles. It’s a great time to get in some exercise and get my dog fix! I’m too busy to have a dog right now so this is a good way to hang with the animals. Other than that I enjoy reading a lot (just finished Kite Runner and A Winter’s Tale) and rock climbing. I also enjoy participating in charity drives for the LA Fire Dept. when I can, and hanging down at the Children’s Hospital donating platelets. That’s something we all need to be doing when we find ourselves with a couple of hours. It’s so important and makes such a huge contribution. A lot of people aren’t aware of what a shortage there is out there and what a difference they can make.

Q.  What is your latest obsession?  Are you into any particular book, sport, music group or activity?

A.  Like I mentioned before I’m a bit of reader and rock climber, I really enjoy those things, but not together, that can get a little tricky. Hanging at animal shelters is something I enjoy also, when I can. They always need a hand and again…..I can get my dog fix, or cat, mostly dog though!  Group wise, I’m really diggin’ The Arctic Monkeys and We Are Scientists, oh yeah and She Wants Revenge, they’ve got a great eighties throw back sound a la Joy Division.  Takes me back to high school.

Q.  Now that it is 2006, what are you most looking forward to this year?

A.  I’d have to say moving to the beach! Isn’t that funny. I don’t want to discover new planets or anything, I just want to move to the beach. I’m such an overachiever! I’m from Vancouver so I’m used to the mountains and water and currently I’m living in Hollywood where I’m not getting to much of that. I’m also looking forward to spending more time with my family. My sister is moving from Toronto to Vancouver so I’ll have the family unit whole again and be able to spend time with them all at once instead of splitting it up between the two cities. Work I know will be great, I’m truly blessed, but for me, in 2006 I want to keep focusing on the important stuff, health, family, love, and happiness. I’m such a hippie!  

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