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Production Notes, About the Cast, Filmmakers

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from Lionsgate publicity:

ABOUT THE PRODUCTION

What if you weren't in control of your own actions? What could you be forced to do against your will? Have sex with a complete stranger? Kill the people you love? In GAMER, a techno-themed action-thriller set in the not-too-distant future, co-creators Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor (CRANK) have taken simulated reality into a terrifying new dimension.

Following the success of the CRANK films, which Neveldine and Taylor describe as "pure ADD candy," the duo wanted to tackle a deeper story featuring bigger ideas and more complex characters. The filmmakers create three unique worlds within GAMER, each with its own filmic style and design. "The simulated reality game, 'Slayers,' is a massive, multiplayer battlefield; 'Society' is a tripped-out, fetishistic social-networking community; and then the real world exists outside the games," explains Neveldine. "Each one has its own look and feeling, its own set of visual rules – from color to camera movement to effects to set design."

"GAMER has all the hallmarks of Neveldine's and Taylor's sick, yet genius minds," says actor Gerard Butler, who stars as Kable, a gladiator who fights to regain his identity within the gaming system that holds him captive. "They really have an innate, natural ability to create these kinds of concepts without over-thinking them, while creating great characters and keeping this element of freshness, youth and progressive thinking. They're very talented."

Like most successful science fiction, GAMER's speculations about the future have a firm basis in present day reality. According to producer Tom Rosenberg, that's part of its appeal. He says, "Although the story is far out, it's grounded in reality. In fact, everything in the game, although set in the future, is really taking place right now, just to a lesser degree."

Producer Gary Lucchesi agrees. "I think all the best science fiction is an extension of what you're currently seeing. You speculate on what's happening now and exaggerate it. I remember listening to the radio one day coming to work," he recalls. "There was a young woman playing an online game who changed her avatar, her online alterimage, into this 6'6" tough guy who carried a gun or a knife, and terrified people. Her alter ego was able to express itself through that video world. I think those fantasies certainly live within all of us."

After watching his physical, emotionally rich performance in Zach Snyder's 300, Neveldine and Taylor knew Gerard Butler was the only actor to play Kable. "There are so few true action stars left on this planet, and Gerard is the best," says Taylor. "He has incredible physical presence and is willing to do the homework to make the action look real and visceral, as we saw with 300. But at the same time, there is a soul and humanity to his performances that draws you in and involves you emotionally."

Apart from the originality of the story, Butler was also attracted to the cutting-edge approach of the filmmakers' style. "I like to take risks," he says, "and I want to think that any project I do is going to affect people either because it's a new way of filmmaking, or because of the emotion behind it, or how unusual the story is. GAMER satisfied all of those requirements."

For the part of Angie Tillman, Kable's wife who is ensnared in the fetishistic 'Society' game, model and actress Amber Valletta faced considerable physical and emotional challenges. "When I first read the script, I thought, 'Wow, I've never seen anything like this,'" Valletta says. "The genre yes, but not this kind of material. Nothing has ever been made that sounded, looked or felt like it. I'd never seen a woman in a role like this. It felt very modern."

"Angie is a tough role," Neveldine admits. "There's the pain Amber has to go through being controlled, the sexual things the script put her through and the emotions and grief and all that stuff. But she tackled it so well. She surprised us everyday. She was amazing."

Taylor adds, "I don't think we really knew how good Amber was until she started working. It was pretty awesome, and she's just a sweetheart."

Playing living avatars controlled by other people, Butler and Valletta grappled with the challenge of not being allowed to react intuitively to a given situation, a dynamic that is in direct conflict with naturalistic acting. Valletta had to practice being utterly powerless in some of the film's most difficult scenes, while Butler had to modify every aspect of his physical work. "Basically, the directors wanted the warriors in the 'Slayers' game to move differently, like a character would in a video game," explains stunt coordinator Darin Prescott. "So guys will march ahead, kind of turn their guns, and then they'll turn with it. It's not as fluid as if guys were just running through battle. There's also a little delay, or "ping," as it's called in the story, which happens when the controlling character makes a move and then the controlled character will make the same move a fraction of a second later."

The unlikely controller of global action star Kable is Simon, a rich, sequestered teenage boy played by Logan Lerman. For most of the story, Simon is able to control the brutality of the game from the comforts of his high-tech gaming room, which Lerman describes as "working with little orange dots everywhere, which is a little complicated, but you get used to it. You get the flow of things and you adapt to the different style. It's cool."

In one particular scene, Simon actually appears on the battlefield with Kable, which was an intimidating experience for Lerman. "It was just so overwhelming," Lerman says, laughing. "I give a lot of credit to Gerard to be able to focus with explosions going off and people getting shot right in front of him. It's crazy stuff. I felt more at home in the studio."

The real mastermind of GAMER's virtual worlds, however, is Ken Castle, played by Michael C. Hall, the star of Showtime's hit series, "Dexter." "Michael was the ideal actor to play Castle," Taylor avows. "This is one of those performances that people are going to talk about."

A man who has grown up in the world of video games and the internet, Castle is the creator of the gaming technology in the film's story. Sequestered in his house, Castle has no need for the outside world, having created a virtual environment of which he is the sole master. Taylor describes Castle as merely one part of a greater dystopian future landscape. "Castle's basically trying to control everything," he explains. "He's trying to get his hands on everything and make everybody march in step and do exactly what he wants them to do. We're moving toward a world, I think, where all of us can be Castle."

For Hall, Castle's egomania was the most appealing aspect of the part. "Castle believes he's enlightened in a way that no one else is, that he's super-human. He doesn't see himself as evil. He's like a kid playing in a sandbox." The role also gave Hall the opportunity to break away from the somewhat repressed characters he's played on television. "The part was like getting on a funhouse ride. I got to be unashamed, lascivious, do a Sammy Davis Jr. soft shoe, beat up the action hero of the year while controlling him with my mind, and have a really strange and severe hairstyle all in the same movie."

Despite GAMER's dark, cautionary story, Neveldine's and Taylor's vision of the future is not completely without hope. A rebel group called the "Humanz" recognizes that Kable has become more popular among the fans of the game than the game itself, and if they can get his support, they stand a chance of tearing down the rapidly growing threat to humanity. At the head of this organization is a man called "Humanz Brother," played by Chris "Ludacris" Bridges.

"I took on the role because I play the voice of reason in the story," explains Bridges, who is an avid gamer himself. "It seems like video games get more and more interactive, and it's just crazy to sit here and think how games will evolve over the next decade. If you allow evolution like this to continue where you're toying around with human beings, it can become something very dangerous. But I think this movie is all about how much influence each individual has on the future and how we can make things change for the good and not for the bad."

Rounding out the cast of GAMER is Kyra Sedgwick in the role of media star Gina Parker Smith, a celebrity who is instrumental to the Humanz's mission to overthrow Castle. A fan of CRANK, Sedgwick signed on to the project having limited exposure to the world of gaming. "It was a leap of faith in that way," she says, "but I really liked their first film and I liked this character. I thought she was fun. I liked the fact that she changes in the film. At first, she's just completely out for herself, out to get the story. She doesn't care who she hurts along the way. But ultimately she realizes that she does have to make a decision between whether to fight this underground grassroots Humanz fight or to be on the side of Ken Castle."

Based on the strength of Neveldine and Taylor's vision, GAMER also inspired a crop of notable actors to appear in a range of cameos. Among those who lent their talents to the project are John Leguizamo (ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13, THE HAPPENING), Alison Lohman (WHITE OLEANDER, MATCH STICK MEN, BIG FISH), Milo Ventimiglia (NBC's "Heroes," STAY ALIVE), Johnny Witworth (3:10 TO YUMA, "CSI: Miami"), Keith David (CRASH), Zoe Bell (ABC's "Lost," ANGEL OF DEATH), Efren Ramirez (NAPOLEON DYNAMITE, CRANK), James Roday and Maggie Lawson (USA's "Psych"), Lloyd Kaufman (Co-Founder and President, Troma Studios), Keith Jardine (American mixed martial artist [MMA], Ultimate Fighting Championship [uFC]), and Richard "Mack" Machowicz (host of Discovery Channel's "Future Weapons").

Neveldine's and Taylor's partnership extends to every aspect of the filmmaking process. Two halves of a single creative force, they share directing responsibilities equally and are most often seen together on set rapid-firing ideas at a breakneck speed. The pace of their work can be destabilizing for the crew and actors; yet it consistently yields results. "Mark and Brian are very unique, very smart, very talented, and they're completely dead-straight honest," says Rosenberg. "There's no manipulation. If they say they can do something, they always do it."

Neveldine's and Taylor's love of cutting edge technology, featured prominently in the film's story, also extends to the filmmaking itself. To further define the unique look of each of the film's fictional environments, the directors chose to use a revolutionary new camera system developed by RED. The RED camera is a digital system that incorporates compact flash cards instead of digital tape. While the system had not been tested to withstand the extreme rigors of an action film production, Neveldine and Taylor, who also serve as camera operators, were willing to take the risk. "Every movie we've shot, we've shot on a different format," Taylor explains. "We're always trying to find the latest, most technological thing like these RED cameras. We were almost beta testing these cameras in the field."

"We've always wanted to move from the film world into new technology," Neveldine adds. "We've been HD guys from the beginning. We love to push those cameras to the limit; we love what they can do. RED isn't HD though. It's RED. It's a whole different format; it's its own beast. It's beautiful. It's the most silky image you'll ever see. When we tried it and saw how compact the camera was and how cool it was, there was no other option but RED."

As camera operators, Neveldine and Taylor regularly incorporate unorthodox camera techniques to achieve a desired effect. Neveldine, who was on rollerblades from the time he could walk, will commonly pick up a camera and take off in a tracking shot, which is one of the real advantages of the smaller RED camera.

"The picture looks awesome," says Butler. "It's never really been done before, and you just have to see two seconds of this film, and you go, 'Wow. What is this? This is really cool.' It's beautiful."

The directors and production designer Jerry Fleming took a similarly innovative approach when designing GAMER's futuristic world. Rather than build entire sets on a soundstage, the filmmakers made it their mission to find real, working locations and transform them into strange new environments. "We wanted our future to look practical, lived in, grounded, not something dreamed up on an art table," explains Taylor. "So we took real places and repurposed them, such as turning a functioning gypsum mine into a prison. What you get is a location that looks like something people would actually exist in. Jerry is a genius at that."

Fleming had to create twenty major sets with some sixty essential set lines. "There's no such thing as knowing what they're going to shoot," Fleming says. "You have to dress everything pretty much 360˚, which my very first director that I ever worked with, Robert Altman, taught me. I didn't have that opportunity again until Mark and Brian. With these guys, I dress sets as much as I can so that they can do whatever they want to do. You just have to assume that it's going to be on camera, and that's much more exciting than building two-wall sets."

For Butler, the varied, creative use of locations made production an endlessly exciting process. "Unlike 300, where we used green screen technology, here we were actually in many different environments," explains the actor. "You're in the big train station or you're in the prison or you're up there in the gypsum mine at an altitude of 7,000 feet. You're in these incredible locations that really help you buy into the feel of being in this messed-up future. But it still feels very organic. It's just like today's world, but 20 years away."

Whether it's the story, the filmmaking technology or the production design, Neveldine and Taylor are committed to discovering new, unique ways to develop and execute their projects, with the hope of helping to expand the possibilities of the medium itself. Rather than choosing between high-tech innovations or guerilla-style pragmatism, the directors embrace both in equal measure, resulting in filmmaking that's continually surprising and teeming with vitality. "We're not trying to take something familiar and push it to the next level by spending more money, piling on more and more effects, and marketing it down your throat," says Neveldine. "We want to give audiences something totally new and original, something they haven't seen before."

ABOUT THE CAST

GERARD BUTLER (Kable / Tillman) made his mark in Hollywood in 2007 starring as Leonidas, the Spartan King, in Zack Snyder's blockbuster 300. The film broke box office records in its opening weekend, earning more than $450 million worldwide. The project solidified Butler as a leading man on the screen in both the United States and Great Britain.

This spring Gerard stars in the upcoming battle-of-the-sexes romantic comedy THE UGLY TRUTH, opposite Katherine Heigl.

Recently Gerard was seen in the Guy Ritchie feature ROCKNROLLA, alongside Thandie Newton and Jeremy Piven, as well as the children's adventure film NIM'S ISLAND, opposite Jodie Foster and Abigail Breslin. In December 2007 Butler starred in the romantic drama P.S. I LOVE YOU with Hilary Swank.

In 2004 Butler won the coveted title role in the film version of Andrew Lloyd Webber's THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. He earned critical acclaim for his work opposite Emily Mortimer in the independent feature DEAR FRANKIE, which screened at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival. Gerard has also been seen in BEOWULF & GRENDEL, THE GAME OF THEIR LIVES, TIMELINE, LARA CROFT TOMB RAIDER: THE CRADLE OF LIFE and REIGN OF FIRE.

In 1997 Butler made his feature film debut in John Madden's award-winning drama HER MAJESTY, MRS. BROWN, starring Judi Dench. His early film work includes roles in FAST FOOD, ONE MORE KISS, HARRISON'S FLOWERS and the 1999 screen adaptation of Chekhov's THE CHERRY ORCHARD.

Born in Scotland, Butler made his stage debut at the age of twelve in the musical Oliver at Glasgow's famous Kings Theatre. As a young man his dreams of acting were temporarily deterred, and he went on to study law for seven years before returning to the stage in London. In 1996 he landed the lead role in the acclaimed stage production of Trainspotting. He later starred on the London Stage in such plays as Snatch and the Donmar Warehouse production of Tennessee Williams' "Suddenly Last Summer," opposite Rachel Weisz.

AMBER VALLETTA (Angie) is a multi-faceted sensation. She is a dynamic actress, mother, philanthropist and model.

She could last be seen in ThinkFilm's independent MY SEXIEST YEAR, opposite Harvey Keitel and Frankie Muniz.

She has appeared in numerous big-budget box office successes such as RAISING HELEN, TRANSPORTER 2 and THE FAMILY MAN. Valletta could also be seen starring opposite Harrison Ford and Michelle Pfeiffer in WHAT LIES BENEATH.

Amber will next be seen in THE SPY NEXT DOOR opposite Jackie Chan and Billy Ray Cyrus.

Growing up in Oklahoma, she initially wanted to become a sociologist and work in the social scope, but her life took a different turn. Her mother enrolled her in a modeling school when she was 15, and soon after she was featured in the pages of Italian Vogue and on the cover of French Elle. Valletta has since appeared in numerous prestigious advertising campaigns such as Versace, Calvin Klein's Escape, DKNY, Prada, Valentino, Jill Sander, Gucci and Chanel. She co-hosted MTV's HOUSE OF STYLE with fellow model Shalom Harlow and she even became the face of Elizabeth Arden.

Valletta is an avid philanthropist. In 1995 she organized a charity called Supermodels Stepping Out Against Hunger, a fashion show that took place in her hometown to benefit the Tulsa Community Food Bank. She also supports Green initiatives and Oceana.

She resides in Los Angeles with her family.

Moving effortlessly from an uptight funeral director on "Six Feet Under" to a Miami blood-spatter analyst and serial killer in Showtime's hit series "Dexter," MICHAEL C. HALL (Ken Castle) continues to illuminate the humanity and intelligence in transformative, challenging characters.

Based on Jeff Lindsay's cult novel Darkly Dreaming Dexter, "Dexter" is an unusual exploration into the mind of a sociopathic killer who targets criminals who have essayed more conventional methods of punishment. Season 4 of "Dexter" premieres this fall on Showtime. For his performance as Dexter, Hall received an Emmy nomination and three consecutive Golden Globe and SAG award nominations.

A formally trained stage actor, Hall made an indelible impression as younger brother David Fisher on HBO's groundbreaking series "Six Feet Under." During the series' five year run, Hall garnered nominations for an Emmy Award for "Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Drama Series" and the "AFI Male Television Actor of the Year Award." Hall and the "Six Feet Under" cast received 2003 and 2004 Screen Actors Guild Awards for "Best Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series," for which they were also nominated in 2002 and 2005.

On film, Hall will next star in Barry W. Blaustein's PEEP WORLD alongside Sarah Silverman and Rainn Wilson. The film traces the relationships between four siblings that implode when they learn that one of their own has written a book divulging intimate family secrets. Hall's film credits also include John Woo's PAYCHECK and the independent drama BEREFT.

A North Carolina native and graduate of New York University's Master of Fine Arts program in acting, Hall has appeared in nearly a dozen major stage productions. He made his Broadway debut as the emcee in Cabaret, directed by Sam Mendes and most recently starred as Billy Flynn in Chicago. Off-Broadway, Hall starred in "Macbeth" opposite Alec Baldwin and Angela Bassett and directed by George C. Wolfe; "Cymbeline" with Liev Schreiber for the New York Shakespeare Festival; "Timon of Athens" and "Henry V" at the Public Theater; "The English Teachers" for Manhattan Class Company; the Manhattan Theater Club's production of "Corpus Christi," directed by Joe Mantello; and with Brian Cox in "Skylight" at the Mark Taper Forum.

KYRA SEDGWICK (Gina Parker Smith) has conquered success on stage, screen and television. Sedgwick can currently be seen in TNT's first original series "The Closer." Her role as Deputy Police Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson garnered her a Golden Globe Award in 2007 for Best Dramatic Actress in a television production. In addition, she has received three Golden Globe nominations, two Emmy nominations, and two SAG nominations, two Independent Spirit Award nominations, a Theater Award, Los Angeles Drama Desk Critics Circle Award, and a Dramalogue Award.

Sedgwick most recently starred in THE GAME PLAN alongside Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. She also recently starred in ThinkFilms's LOVERBOY. Directed by Kevin Bacon, Sedgwick helped develop and co-produced the film, which co-starred Matt Dillon, Campbell Scott and Marisa Tomei. The film premiered at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival.

She starred in Nicole Kassell's THE WOODSMAN, produced by Lee Daniels, opposite Kevin Bacon and Mos Def. It had its world premiere at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival (in competition) receiving rave reviews. It was also showcased in Cannes as part of the 2004 Director's Fortnight lineup and won the Jury prize at the Deauville Film Festival.

Sedgwick received a 2005 Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Actress for her work in Lisa Cholodenko's CAVEDWELLER for Showtime. Sedgwick, who developed and produced the film, plays Delia, a rock singer who returns to her Georgia hometown hoping to regain custody of the two daughters she left with her abusive ex-husband (Aidan Quinn).

The actress also appeared in Joseph Sargent's Emmy-nominated SOMETHING THE LORD MADE for HBO. Sedgwick co-stars alongside Alan Rickman, Mos Def and Mary Stuart Masterson. She plays the role of Mary Blalock, the wife of Alfred Blalock, who performed the first open-heart surgery procedure.

In 2002 Sedgwick co-starred with Parker Posey in Rebecca Miller's independent film, PERSONAL VELOCITY, winning the Dramatic Grand Jury Prize at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival. Other credits include the Emmy-nominated TNT movie "Door To Door," opposite William H. Macy, Helen Mirren and Kathy Baker; Fisher Stevens' film JUST A KISS; Showtime's BEHIND THE RED DOOR, opposite Keifer Sutherland and Stockard Channing; and SECONDHAND LIONS, co-starring Michael Caine, Robert Duvall and Haley Joel Osment.

Other films include John Turteltaub's PHENOMENON, opposite John Travolta; WHAT'S COOKING, which opened the 2000 Sundance Film Festival; BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY; MR. AND MRS. BRIDGE; SINGLES; LEMON SKY; HEART AND SOULS; and Showtime's LOSING CHASE, which she executive produced and starred opposite Helen Mirren.

Sedgwick's theater credits include The Culture Project's New York production of "The Exonerated," a triumphant run of Nicholas Hytner's "Twelfth Night" at Lincoln Center, "Ah Wilderness!," for which she won the Theater Award, and David Mamet's "Oleanna," which garnered her a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award and a Drama League Award.

CHRIS "LUDACRI" BRIDGES (Humanz Brother) has grown from a hip hop superstar to a Hollywood film star. Chris is the CEO of Disturbing Tha Peace Records, the Founder of The Ludacris Foundation, and an actor in the Oscar-winning film CRASH.

His latest album, 2008's "Theater of the Mind," was a smash hit. And last April Chris opened his new Atlanta restaurant, Straights Atlanta. In the fall of 08, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges also appeared in the new indie film BALL DON'T LIE as well as two major features: Guy Ritchie's ROCKNROLLA and MAX PAYNE. His 2007 album, RELEASE THERAPY, won two Grammys, including Best Rap Album.

At his record label, Ludacris has collected a talented and diverse group of artists. The roster includes Shawnna (the dynamic Chicago-bred female rap star), Bobby Valentino (the smooth R&B platinum-selling singer), Field Mob (the groundbreaking hip hop duo), and the newest addition to the DTP family, Shareefa (the soulful and sultry R&B songbird).

In his burgeoning film career, Chris took home both a Screen Actor Guild Award and a Critics' Choice Award for his performance in CRASH and won rave reviews for his turn on NBC's "Law & Order: SVU," a role he will reprise this year. His Ludacris Foundation continues to grow and has raised over half a million dollars towards helping kids to empower themselves.

LOGAN LERMAN's (Simon) path to success began the moment he decided that he wanted to be an actor... at the age of two. Born in Beverly Hills, Lerman got his start in commercials before making his breakout film debut in 2000's THE PATRIOT, in the role of William Martin opposite Mel Gibson.

It wasn't long before Lerman was known as one of Hollywood's most talented and diverse young actors. Lerman's role in the 2003 made-for-television film A PAINTED HOUSE won him a Young Artist Award for Best Performance by a Leading Young Actor in a television production. In 2004 he was cast in the television series "Jack & Bobby" as Robert "Bobby" McCallister, and Lerman consequently won another Young Artist Award.

Continuing his feature film work, Lerman appeared in 2006's HOOT, where he played Roy Eberhardt. The film netted him a third Young Artist Award win, this time for Best Performance by a Leading Young Actor in a feature film.

Lerman has also appeared in WHAT WOMEN WANT, RIDING IN CARS WITH BOYS, THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT, THE NUMBER 23, and 3:10 TO YUMA, for which he was once again nominated for a Young Artist Award.

Later this year Lerman continues his meteoric rise to the top with a role in the comedy feature MY ONE AND ONLY, opposite Kevin Bacon and Renee Zellweger. Lerman is also going to be starring as the lead in the upcoming Chris Columbus movie PERCY JACKSON.

A former pro football player for the L.A. Rams, San Diego Chargers, and the Washington Redskins, athlete-turned-actor TERRY CREWS (Hackman) is living proof that dreams do come true. One of the most versatile actors to make this transition, he has quickly amassed an impressive resume in both film and television.

Later this year, Crews can be seen in TERMINATOR SALVTION, opposite Christian Bale, and MIDDLE MEN, with Luke Wilson and Giovanni Ribisi.

Crews was most recently seen in Fox's STREET KINGS, which costars Keanu Reeves as an alcoholic Los Angeles cop framed for murder by his former mentor (Forest Whitaker), as well as GET SMART, where he costars with Steve Carrell and Anne Hathaway in the movie adaptation of the classic TV show.

Crews was also seen alongside Eddie Murphy and Katt Williams in the Paramount/Dreamworks comedy NORBIT. Before that, he starred in the acclaimed but studio-dismissed Mike Judge comedy IDIOCRACY, alongside Luke Wilson and Dax Shepard. Crews also had a notable cameo role in the film HARSH TIMES, which came out November 2007 (starring Christian Bale).

Crews will soon return to the small screen where he continues his critically acclaimed role as Julius in the CW series "Everybody Hates Chris." Inspired by the childhood experiences of comedian Chris Rock (who narrates the series), the show explicates in the most comedic of fashion the touching story of a teenager growing up as the eldest of three children in Brooklyn, New York during the early 1980s.

Crews has also appeared in BALLS OF FURY, THE LONGEST YARD, WHITE CHICKS, BAADASSSSS!, MALBU'S MOST WANTED and FRIDAY AFTER NEXT.

Born and raised in Flint, Michigan, Crews was a teenager when he witnessed the downward spiral of the city and the collapse of the auto industry. To escape the hardships around him, Crews turned to the world of art. In high school he won an art scholarship to attend the Interlochen Art Academy; he then was awarded the Art Excellence Scholarship to attend Western Michigan University. His plan was to become a special effects artist in Hollywood right after college. He went on to play All Mid-American Conference defensive end, highlighted by winning the Mid-American Conference championship in 1988.

Terry currently resides in California with his wife of 18 years, their four daughters and one son.

ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS

NEVELDINE / TAYLOR (Directors)

MARK NEVELDINE, born in Watertown, NY, majored in Drama/Psychology at Hobart College, where he was a lettered athlete and a Dean 's List student. He began his career as an award-winning actor and Off-Broadway director in over 25 plays in NYC, and then moved behind the camera as Director of Photography on documentaries, music videos and a television pilot. His narrative DP work includes THIS BEAUTIFUL LIFE, starring Ned Beatty.

BRIAN TAYLOR, born in Pasadena, CA, has served as Director of Photography on a variety of award-winning shorts and independent features. His work as Director and Cinematographer on THE MAN WHO LOVED ELEVATORS (a short based on the work of Charles Bukowski) established Brian as an HD pioneer and highlighted Cinequest's DigitalxDigital showcase.

The two joined forces on THE KEYS (a surreal action/adventure) filmed in Morocco, inventing one of their many camera techniques, "roller-dolly" (U.S. patent pending). The early part of 2002 was spent in the Dominican Republic completing work on a documentary about the Fuentes Cigar Family.

Upon returning to the United States, the directing team was promptly snatched up by @radical.media for commercials and music videos. Through @radical.media they have directed award-winning commercials for Nike, Motorola, Bud Light, Powerade, KFC, Michelob and Honda.

Neveldine and Taylor hit the feature scene hard when they wrote, directed and camera-operated the instant cult classic CRANK, starring Jason Statham, with Lakeshore Entertainment and Lionsgate. They wrote and produced the thriller PATHOLOGY, starring Milo Ventimiglia, and wrote and directed the recently released CRANK: HIGH VOLTAGE. The team has writing deals with 20th Century Fox, Warner Brothers and Mandalay Pictures. Neveldine & Taylor also produced and directed "Brand X" (a TV pilot for FX).

TOM ROSENBERG (Producer) is the chairman and CEO of Lakeshore Entertainment, which he founded in 1994. He produced MILLION DOLLAR BABY, which won the 2004 Academy Award for Best Picture. Directed by and starring Clint Eastwood and co-starring Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman, the film also won Oscars for Eastwood (Best Director), Swank (Best Actress) and Freeman (Best Supporting Actor). Rosenberg recently produced THE UGLY TRUTH, starring Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler, directed by Robert Luketic; CRANK and CRANK: HIGH VOLTAGE, starring Jason Statham; and the upcoming reinvention of the movie classic FAME. He also produced ELEGY, the film adaptation of Philip Roth's novel, The Dying Animal, starring Penelope Cruz and Ben Kingsley; HENRY POOLE IS HERE, starring Luke Wilson and directed by Mark Pellington; MIDNIGHT MEAT TRAIN, starring Bradley Cooper; and PATHOLOGY, starring Milo Ventimiglia.

Among the other recent feature film projects produced by Lakeshore are UNDERWORLD 3: RISE OF THE LYCANS, staring Michael Sheen; UNTRACEABLE, starring Diane Lane and directed by Gregory Hoblit; FEAST OF LOVE, starring Morgan Freeman and Greg Kinnear, directed by Robert Benton; THE DEAD GIRL, which was nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards, including Best Feature, directed by Karen Moncrieff; and THE LAST KISS, starring Zach Braff and Jacinda Barrett, directed by Tony Goldwyn.

Additional Lakeshore projects include the first two UNDERWORLD films, THE EXORCISM OF EMILY ROSE, THE CAVE, WICKER PARK, THE HUMAN STAIN, THE GIFT, AUTUMN IN NEW YORK, PASSION OF MIND, THE MOTHMAN PROPHECIES, RUNAWAY BRIDE, ARLINGTON ROAD, 200 CIGARETTES, KIDS IN THE HALL: BRAIN CANDY, 'TIL THERE WAS YOU, BOX OF MOONLIGHT, THE REAL BLONDE and GOING ALL THE WAY.

Rosenberg began his film career as co-founder of Beacon Communications, under whose banner he served as Executive Producer of such films as THE COMMITMENTS, SUGAR HILL, A MIDNIGHT CLEAR, PRINCESS CARABOO, THE HURRICANE and THE ROAD TO WELVILLE.

GARY LUCCHESI (Producer) serves as President of Lakeshore Entertainment, an independent film company based in Los Angeles. Lucchesi executive produced MILLION DOLLAR BABY, which won the Oscar for Best Picture of 2004. Directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Eastwood, Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman, the film won Oscars for Eastwood (Director), Swank (Actress) and Freeman (Supporting Actor). Lucchesi also produced UNDERWORLD 3: RISE OF THE LYCANS, starring Michael Sheen; UNTRACEABLE, directed by Gregory Hoblit and starring Diane Lane; and ELEGY, directed by Isabel Coixet and starring Penelope Cruz and Sir Ben Kingsley. He also produced the recently released films CRANK and CRANK: HIGH VOLTAGE, directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, and THE UGLY TRUTH, directed by Robert Luketic and starring Gerard Butler and Katherine Heigl. Lucchesi is also producing the upcoming reinvention of the movie classic FAME.

Lucchesi's production credits also include THE DEAD GIRL, which was nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards including Best Feature. The film was directed by Karen Moncrieff with an ensemble cast including Marcia Gay Harden, Brittany Murphy and Mary Beth Hurt.

Other credits include THE LAST KISS, starring Zach Braff and Jacinda Barrett, directed by Tony Goldwyn; box office smash THE EXORCISM OF EMILY ROSE; AEON FLUX, starring Charlize Theron; and the first two installments of the UNDERWORLD series, both starring Kate Beckinsale. In 2004, Lucchesi produced WICKER PARK, directed by Paul McGuigan and starring Josh Hartnett. Prior to that, he produced THE HUMAN STAIN, based on the Philip Roth novel, directed by Academy Award winner Robert Benton and starring Anthony Hopkins and Nicole Kidman.

Lucchesi's credits with Lakeshore Entertainment include THE MOTHMAN PROPHECIES, starring Richard Gere and Laura Linney; AUTUMN IN NEW YORK, starring Gere and Winona Ryder; and Sam Raimi's THE GIFT, which starred Cate Blanchett, Katie Holmes, Greg Kinnear, Hilary Swank and Giovanni Ribisi. Lucchesi was the Executive Producer on the box office hit RUNAWAY BRIDE, starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere and directed by Garry Marshall.

Lucchesi previously served as president of Gary Lucchesi Productions, an independent production company where he produced PRIMAL FEAR, for which Edward Norton was nominated for an Oscar. He also produced the Emmy-nominated GOTTI and BREAST MEN for HBO. In addition, Lucchesi produced the Emmy-winning Showtime movie WILD IRIS.

While president of Andrew Lloyd-Webber's The Really Useful Film Co., Lucchesi executive produced the film version of the musical CATS, as well as original feature films and direct-to-video releases of other theater hits.

Prior to becoming an independent producer, Lucchesi was President of Production at Paramount and oversaw such films as GHOST, INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE, FATAL ATTRACTION, THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER, COMING TO AMERICA, THE NAKED GUN, THE GODFATHER: PART III, STAR TREK, BLACK RAIN and THE UNTOUCHABLES.

Prior to his tenure at Paramount, Lucchesi worked at TriStar Pictures for four years as both Vice President and Senior Vice President of Production. Lucchesi began his career in Los Angeles as an agent for the William Morris Agency where he represented such stars as Kevin Costner, Michelle Pfeiffer, Susan Sarandon and John Malkovich.

SKIP WILLIAMSON (Executive Producer) started Will Records in his garage in 1994. Three years later he partnered with Lakeshore Entertainment to form Lakeshore Records, releasing motion picture soundtracks and indie recording artists. The label released the first two albums by V2 indie rock darlings Grandaddy and drum and bass legend AK1200. Skip Williamson has executive produced numerous film soundtracks including the Grammy nominated NAPOLEON DYNAMITE and LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE. Other soundtracks include UNDERWORLD and UNDERWORLD: EVOLUTION, WANTED, TROPIC THUNDER, SUPERBAD and RESIDENT EVIL: EXTINCTION.

Along with heading Lakeshore Records, Williamson produces films for Lakeshore Entertainment. He championed and produced the Len Wiseman directed UNDERWORLD franchise which grossed over $200 million worldwide. He also produced CRANK and CRANK: HIGH VOLTAGE, both directed by Neveldine and Taylor.

Award winning cinematographer EKKEHART POLLACK (Director of Photography) was an accomplished painter before beginning his career in film, and he has brought his artistic eye to a range of movies, short films and documentaries. His credits include KILLER, I LOVE YOU, BABY and THE DEAD DRIVER IN THE WOODS. Prior to his work on GAMER, Pollack teamed with Neveldine / Taylor on PATHOLOGY, which they wrote and produced.

A graduate of the University of Texas School of Film, JERRY FLEMING (Production Designer) began his career with filmmaker Robert Altman and art directed on Altman's HBO series "Tanner '88" and his feature films THE PLAYER and SHORTCUTS.

After art directing the critically acclaimed BOTTLE ROCKET, Fleming moved to a career as a production designer with the film LIVE NUDE GIRLS. Among the many features he has production designed include PERMANENT MIDNIGHT, JAWBREAKER, THINGS YOU CAN TELL JUST BY LOOKING AT HER, BREAKIN' ALL THE RULES, PATHOLOGY, CRANK and CRANK: HIGH VOLTAGE, his fourth project with directors Neveldine and Taylor.

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After watching his physical, emotionally rich performance in Zach Snyder's 300, Neveldine and Taylor knew Gerard Butler was the only actor to play Kable. "There are so few true action stars left on this planet, and Gerard is the best," says Taylor. "He has incredible physical presence and is willing to do the homework to make the action look real and visceral, as we saw with 300. But at the same time, there is a soul and humanity to his performances that draws you in and involves you emotionally."

Apart from the originality of the story, Butler was also attracted to the cutting-edge approach of the filmmakers' style. "I like to take risks," he says, "and I want to think that any project I do is going to affect people either because it's a new way of filmmaking, or because of the emotion behind it, or how unusual the story is. GAMER satisfied all of those requirements."

I love this little bit and Logan talking about Gerry really knowing how to work through the insanity of explosions.

He has such dedication and I'm glad to hear how he is excited and calls the picture 'beautiful'.

I CANNOT WAIT! I'm so excited.

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Thanks Barb! Great article. I enjoyed reading about the film makers Mark & Brian too.

I'm even more excited to see this film now. Gerry will be perfect in this!

Cheryl

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After watching his physical, emotionally rich performance in Zach Snyder's 300, Neveldine and Taylor knew Gerard Butler was the only actor to play Kable. "There are so few true action stars left on this planet, and Gerard is the best," says Taylor. "He has incredible physical presence and is willing to do the homework to make the action look real and visceral, as we saw with 300. But at the same time, there is a soul and humanity to his performances that draws you in and involves you emotionally."

Apart from the originality of the story, Butler was also attracted to the cutting-edge approach of the filmmakers' style. "I like to take risks," he says, "and I want to think that any project I do is going to affect people either because it's a new way of filmmaking, or because of the emotion behind it, or how unusual the story is. GAMER satisfied all of those requirements."

I love this little bit and Logan talking about Gerry really knowing how to work through the insanity of explosions.

He has such dedication and I'm glad to hear how he is excited and calls the picture 'beautiful'.

I CANNOT WAIT! I'm so excited.

I was copying the same part while I was reading it. What a great way to describe Gerry. Perfect!

I also love Kyra S. so I know it will be great. It will be intense, but anything Gerry is in is intense, right? :)

And thanks Barb! I love that everything is on the site immediately and perfectly. :bow:

Edited by andrea71

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thanks for sharing the link :)

great article and my interest in this movie grows daily!

Those were such nice comments about Gerard from Taylor as well...

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