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While living in Pittsburgh, I had an alcoholic roommate who came out of a blackout driving on a highway in western Ohio, and he had no idea why he was there or where he was going.
And over the years, I’ve heard many stories of drunks in blackouts who flew or drove long distances and had no idea where they were when they came to. This is very real. And, of course, it’s incredibly dangerous.
Our man Jack finds himself in a different city, and the reactions to him being there are quite different.
I’ve always been amazed at the fact that many people see this as sport, as a funny scenario. In reality, blackouts are horrifying experiences.
I wanted to explore a story where the fallout of this insanity, on a caring person, is at the heart of it.
Jack in Astoria shoot
We shot this a block away from where I live. I scouted the neighborhood and knocked on a few doors. The two houses that we use in the film are exactly what I envisioned when I wrote it. It’s classic Astoria.
We gathered at my apartment, and the fight director worked with the actors, makeup was done, clothes and camera equipment readied, coffee drank. Then we embarked.
Shooting outside in a city can bring a lot of unknowns, such as a road crew showing up. We were fortunate that day as we had a minimum of distractions. The home owners stayed out of our business and let us go about our work.
It’s always a race against the sun, and we were a bit hurried toward the end of the day. We mostly shot in sequence, which helps the actors feel the flow of the story, and the impact from one scene into the next.
We had good light, although it was very bright, which is difficult. But - it’s much better than rain!