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  • June 6, 2024
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Russ Emanuel | Interview

INTERVIEWS
Cult Critic Russ Emanuel | Interview

Cult Critic: What initially sparked your passion for filmmaking?

Russ: It was the music of John Williams, when I first heard it in the film “Superman” and upon watching the helicopter sequence in the first “Jurassic Park” film in the theatres.  It was movie magic to my ears.

 

Cult Critic: How do you approach securing funding for your independent projects?

Russ: Either through private investors or crowdfunding.

 

Cult Critic: What strategies do you utilize to get your films seen by a wider audience?

Russ:  I use social media a lot such as my production website Russem Productions (www.russem.com), Facebook, X, and Instagram to post about any winnings such as the wonderful “Pen of Honor” award you bestowed onto me.

 

Cult Critic: How do you leverage social media and online platforms to connect with your audience?

Russ:  Anytime there is anything to do with one of my films, I post onto the various platforms to hopefully show the audience that something is happening on said film. That way they know that there’s something in the future to watch out for.

 

Cult Critic: What are some of the most valuable lessons you've learned in your filmmaking journey so far?

Russ:  Is to work together with your cast and crew as a family. I always consider every film I work on as a Team, such as my current feature “Staycation” which I call the filmmaking family Team Staycation.

 

Cult Critic:  Are you currently working on any new projects you'd like to share about?

Russ:  I am currently in post-production on my sixth feature film called “Staycation”.  It is about a global zombie pandemic and how the world reacts to it. Currently, we just finished all the visual effects work on the film (nearly 600 individual VFX elements and after a grueling several months), and now we are close to the final sound mix which should happen in July or August, thereby completing the film.

 

Cult Critic:  In your opinion, what are the biggest opportunities and challenges facing independent cinema today?

Russ:  I think the digital age is a blessing and a big opportunity to independent cinema because there are more avenues to showcase your work, whether it be at a film festival or online streaming platforms such as Tubi TV or Amazon Prime. That said, that also means there is a lot of competition with other filmmakers and the challenge is to make yourself stand out (hopefully, knock on wood).


Cult Critic:  How do you plan to adapt your approach to distribution as new technologies emerge?

Russ:  I will go with the flow as the old saying goes.

 

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