The new photos

As people, we tend to forget that we age because our minds are always feeling fresh and ready to go! But when you work in the business of entertainment where your mug is always being filmed over the years, you get to witness the aging process and hopefully enjoy it! I had some long overdue photos taken over the holidays and wanted to share them here with you. I am enjoying my aging and happy to see I am becoming my father, at least in photographs! 

Look forward to your thoughts;

Motion Capture for Microsoft's 'Gears of War' franchise.

Once in a while something comes along that gives you a glimpse of what the future may bring, in terms of technology... and my experience working in the motion capture world has done just that. With this 'behind the scenes' footage of the video game 'Gears of War', you will get a great sense of how the human form is captured and ultimately copied for the digital medium. I both produce and act in this imaginary world and feel privileged to be a part of the future... at least for entertainment industry... but who knows where this will lead? Enjoy!

The passing of my Father.

It's been just over a month now since my father passed away. He left us peacefully in his sleep at the age of 72, after a tough battle with MDS... and this is my first time trying to write about the experience, or my feelings, or I'm not really sure at this point, so I will type on in hopes of something making sense in the following lines.

But first, let's start with a fun pic taken at my 40th birthday party... Dad always knew how to show up for the big occasions that's for sure... thanks Pops, that smile and charm will always live on in everyone's memory.

Dad and Chad.JPG

It's a strange feeling to know he is gone. Not just gone away on holidays or traveling, but gone gone. I'm doing okay with the whole process, because I had a lot of time with Dad during his struggles with MDS, during my life in general and luckily during the last few days of his life, but it just feels plain weird to know I can't just pick up the phone to hear his voice. We all know this is a part of everyone's journey, the death part that is, but his leaving at the young age of 72 is the sad part to me. With my son now being 2 years old, he won't get to know his Papa and Dad won't get to see Roro grow up to be an amazing person. They did get to have a major imprint on each other during the past 2 years though, with Dad staying with us on his journey though the medical system and if there is a silver lining, it's that their time together was so concentrated that Dad will always live on in Rhodes' memory... with a little help from me of course.

I miss this guy. Always up for a party, always making bad jokes and always loving life even at the end. We had such an amazing time together during his last precious days, laughing on the porch, sharing knowing looks, just being in each others company like we had a million times before... but this time we both knew it was different. See Dad had a plan and he played it like a perfect game of dominoes. I had a job on a movie that he told me to take instead of coming down to see him when I was booked to, then once I had arrived he got out of his bed (where he had been for days) and back onto the porch. We listened, we talked and we partied the way through those last life changing days together and then he decided it was time. He went back to bed and proceeded to let go. He gave me those perfect moments together on the porch to carry with me forever and I love him even more for that, if that's even possible.

I did write a eulogy for Dad at his services and I won't try to repeat it here, as it's such a momentary experience that's hard to describe, but I do want to honour him by sharing this news of his passing with anyone who chooses to read the public blog. I do want everyone to know that, if you have the chance to spend quality time with your closest loved ones, don't hesitate, as it's too important to pass up. As we all grow older and hopefully a little wiser, having these final moments with Dad are pure gold and I will always carry on his life lessons and honour his smiling legacy.

Below is one of my favourite pictures of him. He sits amongst a crowd of people, where he always felt at home being the social animal he was, simply enjoying a fun time with his family and always wearing the most ridiculous Canadian themed t-shirts! 

Love ya Pops

So MDS. What is it exactly?

It's basically a disease that stops the bone marrow in his tracks and halts the creation of the life giving red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. Dad had it for aprox 4 years and if this blog helps anyone else out there, I truly believe his condition was in response to his brachytherapy he chose to fight the beginning of prostate cancer. The therapy worked for the prostate, but it's in my belief and others I have read about, that the potent radiation set off a chain reaction in his body resulting in the MDS. (Please contact me if you need any more help in your search for answers of how MDS possibility came about in your life.)

So You Said Yes... and I agree

I have been working hard on a new movie for TV (thus the reason for the lack of blogging), which has inspired me to share some love. 

In this crazy industry, it's a rarity to find the perfect combination of chemistry on set which allows everyone to thoroughly enjoy their time at work, away from their 'normal lives'. The cast and crew are usually a fun collection of unique personalities who love making films, feed off the energy of meeting new people and allow 12-15 hour days (depending on your dept) to be a part of their normal working lives, so as you can imagine, it's a rare feat to come across a group that is in sync and enjoy each other like we do on 'So You Said Yes'!

We are now in our final week of work and I want to thank everyone involved for making my experience on this MOW an exceptional one, I have laughed and smiled through out! The brilliant Kellie Martin is a true treat and the beacon of light who led the charge by setting the all important positive tones. The producers Robert Lee and Jonathan Schwartz have been stellar in their defense of quality story telling and our director Christie Will has had the perfect soft touch to make sure our sails continued to fill with air and glide smoothly along. 

This romantic comedy will be coming out sometime in February, just in time for Valentines Day and I predict it to be a fan favourite on the Hallmark Channel!

Who in the world is Emjay Anthony?

First of all, I have a ton to catch up on lately, as I haven't had a moment to allow my brain to get into the creative writing mode I need for this online journal... in order to give it some semblance of truth. So here is something that blew my mind the other night...

...I watched the film 'CHEF' ( I know it's already old news but that's what happens when you get caught binge watching TV!), and I was blown away by the young actor Emjay Anthony, who plays the son of Jon Favraeu. WOW, who is this kid? Now I only use the word kid because it makes me feel I still have more 'wordily experience' than this young thespian but in truth, I feel I have something huge to learn from this brilliant 'kid'. 

The film itself was a true treat, reminding me once again that indie films seem to be the only way to connect with the audience's heart. Favraeu directs beautifully, reminding me that cinema life isn't all about superheros, but of simple well weaved stories, with great music and comedy throughout. 

Anyhow, just wanted to pass along the word so you can check out 'Chef' too and I would love to hear your thoughts about Emjay. 

Now off to think about humour and how important it is in art and I just saw Ryan Adams live in concert and didn't know I would laugh and dance my way with him... more on that to come.

peace...go get em Emjay!




Hector and it's search for my heart

Well I finally got a babysitter and saw 'Hector and the Search for Happiness' and... loved it! I was very surprised that I was affected in such a beautiful way with my heart and emotion showing their vibrant colours... so much so that I wanted to spread the word for others not to be swayed by some of the strange critiques out there. 

I went to the cast and crew screening in Vancouver where our director Peter Chelsom gave a lovely and entertaining speech about his experience working with an international crew and how the film challenged his perspectives as a seasoned director. Dan Mangan's soundtrack was perfect, the film looked great and the acting was spot on, with Simon Pegg leading the way...although Rosamund Pike is surprising the hell out of me with her talents and how easily she commands every scene she's in. I so enjoyed the tone and how the film tried not to take itself too seriously during it's own search for balance and truth. It was a lovely reminder to not listen to those stuffy old critics (I usually never do, but this one was a bit more personal cause I'm in it) and to just stay in the moment and experience life as it comes my way.

Thanks to Simon Pegg (..."the 'Indiana Jones' of happiness"), Peter Chelsom and Christine Haebler for the great memories and another great lesson in life.

Homeland clichés and their importance?

Let me just start by saying, this blog entry is not about religion or war or anything that actually does affect our immediate's about entertainment and the question regarding responsibility attached to fictional programming.

I recently read an article in the local Vancouver Sun (written by the Washington Post), about Homeland's Season premiere and the mistakes this series makes in regards to religious facts and it's blanket negative portrayal of Islam, which continues to support a world of fear and thus influence our political views. Even though I applaud the chance to debate this topic through such an article, it also amazes me that we put such responsibility on fictional programming when in truth, our TV, Film, Theatre etc are just mediums that have always reflected where our society was during that period of history. If we are relying upon our entertainment to lead the way as an example of all things good and just, then we have truly lost our way. Our leaders, our news outlets, our societies are all supposed to be setting the examples, by showing the mass public the way forward into peace, by not supporting fear based dialogue and clichés or watching these TV shows... but that is not happening and thus our fictional TV programming somehow has become our place to go for a reality check... amazingly sad.

I say leave the actors, the films, the TV programs out of the conversations when it comes to serious world changing topics. Stop giving them the power by writing articles condemning their choice of what they want to entertain us with, but allow them to continue being the mirror on the wall, showing us how far we have stepped out of line in our perspectives...let them fail or succeed as businesses, not as some elected official TV show!

With that said, I am going to enjoy the season premiere of Homeland tonight, knowing that I am able to understand it's place in our society as pure entertainment and art and hope that one day, when we look back upon this time, that this particular show will reflect back to us, what society was consuming through the power of media. We vote with our actions and I am guilty... of watching TV once again.


Elaine Stritch rocks my world... is that allowed?

Now if you don't know who Elaine Stritch is, go watch the recent doc about her (Netflix has it) and forever be in awe of her talent and personality.

She was the original broadway star and I mean Broad, as she had the courage to just say what she felt and live the way she wanted... at least from my outsiders view of course.

Now here is what I ponder, would she have made her way through the maze of today's theatre and film/tv industry with the attitude and mouth she has? I mean, I love her strength (even if it comes from insecurity), but I truly wonder if she would get away with it today? I suppose it's all good if the intention is from LOVE, but too many people nowadays would just quickly judge and toss that type of person to the sidelines, when they didn't toe the line.

Elaine made it in this world because of her non apologetic view and good on her!...she said it herself, "too many people talk too nice to each other in this industry" ... covering up what they are really feeling.... fear?

My hat goes off to you Ms. Stritch and rest in peace.

I just wanted to celebrate her today.

Just a thought

The new site, the first post and working with Simon Pegg on Hector

Let's just get started with some fun video, as sometimes is just better to watch than to read.

The fun film 'Hector and Search For Happiness' is already out in the UK and is premiering in the USA on Sept 26th... hope you have a chance to check out this warm hearted film starring Simon Pegg, Rosamund Pike, Toni Colette and myself in a supporting role. I so enjoyed my time on set with Simon and Toni who are just stellar folks, relaxed and crazy talented. I also have a quick screen grab here and can you believe, I didn't take a single snap whilst on set... idiot! 

Welcome to the new site and I plan on using this blog on a consistent basis until my life sends me into a different direction... so basically I'll do my best to update and keep things interesting.