Brian Levy plays Junior, one of the most complex and challenging roles in the film (or any other).
How would you describe In-World War (the film itself) in no more than seven words?
In-World War is Brazil meets Matrix.
What was your role on IWW and what did you do?
I was the actor playing Junior. Junior is the main antagonist of the film and propels Mary on his journey.
Why did you get involved with it? How did you hear about it?
Junior is the kind of role an actor dreams of. I saw the casting on Craigslist and was invited to audition by Mariel Christian [Casting Director] and Brant Smith [Director DJ Bad Vegan].
Did you enjoy working on the film? What was the best part for you?
Being able to work with a script of this caliber and such a dedicated team was a real pleasure. Traveling to France to shoot was definitely a highlight of the project.
What interested you about this film in particular?
I have been a long time fan of Fantasy and Sci-Fi books and films so it is always thrilling to me to work in this genre.
How long have you been working in film/involved with film?
I have been working exclusively in film since 2006, but I’ve been acting since I was a kid.
What is your goal in filmmaking generally (director, writer, director of photography, key grip, etc.) and why?
My goal is to make a living as a film actor.
In your view, why is filmmaking and making art important to society as a whole?
There are whole volumes in the answer to this question. Art is vitally important to society. Just one of many reasons is that it holds a mirror up to our society and allows us to examine and question our assumptions.
Did helping make an indie film leave you with a positive or negative outlook on this type of ultra-low budget filmmaking (and why)?
As a principle or supporting actor, I have only worked on ultra-low budget films. While I am extremely grateful for every project I’ve worked on, I long to work on a film that has a higher budget. Higher budget films have more support for each role, for those in front and behind the camera, so each person can focus solely on their task.
How do you feel about the genre of science fiction? Is sci-fi just for fun or can we tell serious stories that are culturally relevant? (Okay, that’s a loaded question....but still, what do you think?)
I love the Sci-Fi genre because it often tackles issues that are culturally relevant in a creative, thought provoking way.
The film takes an usual sci-fi approach to issues of racial profiling, Islamophobia and the so-called “war on terror” -- how have these issues impacted your life and your work?
I feel this issue is much to complex to answer in a short format like this. The United States, from it’s inception, has struggled with issues of race and discrimination, this struggle is woven into the very fabric of our society. We can not escape it and it has a profound impact on us whether we realize it or not.
Before you started with IWW, what did you expect it to be like working on the film?
I try to approach each project with an open mind and few expectations, though the high quality of the script gave me hope the film would turn out well.
How was it actually, compared to that? What was exactly as you expected it? What was very different?
Not having worked with Brant as a director before, I was unsure what his process would be like. He turned out to be one of the best directors I’ve worked with, clear in what he wanted, helpful in creating the right atmosphere for any given scene.
DIY filmmaking can be rough. What was the worst moment? If you have one, share a painful memory from making the film, to give a taste of how tough it got.
The toughest day of shooting for me was my last day of filming, which in and of itself was bitter sweet. It was a series of pick up shots shot over a year after principle photography was finished. We were moving quickly between shots and I had to keep changing my wardrobe. There was no changing room, it was a bitter cold night, the final shot involved me being in nothing but my underwear, and in an extremely emotional moment. Even on this toughest of days, I loved being on set and would do it all again in a heart beat.
What did your experience of working on IWW tell you about humanity and people in general?
People have been very generous with their time and energy working on In-World War and despite a culture that, in general, does not appreciate the arts, there are those that continue to find it vitally important.
What have you been doing since you worked on the film? What other film projects have you done?
Since the film was shot, my wife gave birth to our daughter. My time, blessedly, has been spent raising her, though I have squeezed in a few short film projects as well.
Why should people get involved with, donate money and/or help out on IWW?
In-World War is, hands down, the best story I’ve worked on and with the right support has the potential to be an amazing film.
What else would you like to say about your experience on IWW? Any funny anecdotes or behind the scenes stories?
I had a blast working on this project - from shooting in an actual airplane, to being taken down by a SWAT team, to shooting on location in France, magnifique!
To learn more about Brian Levy's other film work: