Paula Blair chats with Dean Simone, Val McAdoo and Pete Postiglione about making their sports-themed family drama independent feature film Game Day (dir. Edgar Michael Bravo, 2021). Each talk through their production experiences in front of and behind the camera, Italian-American culture and family, and growing film production and storytelling embedded in Philadelphia. Includes plot details and potential spoilers.
Music: commonGround by airtone (c) copyright 2018 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial (3.0) license. Edited by Paula Blair with Audacity. Recorded on 14 September 2022 using Zoom. Get early access on Patreon.
Dean and Paula connected via matchmaker.fm
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hello you’re very welcome to audio visual cultures the podcast that explores sets of different areas across film the arts and media I am polo player and for this episode it was my greatest pleasure to speak to dean’s Simone file market J. and Pete posted on all access and had various production roles and the independent film Kim tae released in late twenty twenty one and tonight quite widely available for streaming we talk about it’s a production process of the film this seems a right place cultural identity and familial inter relationships before we meet them I want to let you all know that instead of every other Wednesday the podcast is making a slight shift she releasing on the first and third Wednesdays of the month I am busy at the moment Swiss paid work and Tobago writing projects all of which I needs to prioritise says site just don’t have enough income from the podcast she justify keeping its shed gill head of doing these other jobs that are giving me income and I’m also relinquishing myself from the responsibility of producing contents every months so if there are months coming up where I don’t have to yep the suits will skip that month this is so I don’t short change our patrons who pay for extras an early releases and I can just pause their payments until thurs content coming up again I want to keep the quality high for all of he and I can do that better if I’m not burning nice and I’m not getting stressed so I’m sure you’ll understand and I hope you’ll agree that ice being consistent for four years some of you haven’t been around for that long some of you have you know if you’ve been here from the start you know initially we started off weakly then after I think about it six months or something dot became unsustainable because I’m doing this by myself and then we switch to the fortnightly format which has been working really well and it allows me to catch up to my south after years of really struggling I’m not only actually getting really get paid work and as a Sam I just need to prioritize stop because the podcast has remained pretty stagnant in terms of getting an income and I’ve tried to do the whole really plying everything and see it and and everything and it hasn’t really quite worked so it’s working in other areas of my life and I need said go where the money yes really hopefully we’ll keep enjoying audio visual cultures as sweet path it very slightly T. twice monthly which worksite really not much differently at least not for awhile and then there might to speak out months and then hopefully you’ll enjoy this all the more when we come back okay invigorated its hands not to spit and stuff but for the sake of it my huge thanks to see our patrons out to pitch the on dot com forward slash AV cultures and everybody they sang he has reached ITS feedback and basis on socials this whole really helps other listeners find the show and learn from our fantastic cast I had an absolute blast recording this with Dane file and pastes and I’m sure you’ll really enjoy this conversation take a thank you so much for being on my show and I love my babies I love speaking see independent film makers and it’s just so exciting to connect with people across the Atlantic as well dean Simone follow my Kitty and Pete Pocic Leone thank you all so much for joining me on audio visual cultures at youthful been unfolds and making at quite a special independent sports themes family drama feature film called PM day which we’re gonna try ends slash I’d a little bit and I understand it’s very much teens be a baby as a co writer of the film as well so we’ll do that in a moment but first of all it would be fantastic to get some voices attached to those names so it’s okay can I go awry and everybody if you’re happy to just introduce yourself tell us a little bit about yourself and your involvement in the film that would be a great starts sounds good %HESITATION dean Simone and %HESITATION I was one of the co writers and co producers on this and I was one of the actors in it it’s well we shot it back in our home town those guys live there now I’d like to live there in Philadelphia so %HESITATION we definitely brought a little bit of Philly the camera I and now I’m acting here %HESITATION I eat the card and Jeannie for tankers take great heart to Frank and %HESITATION I helped produce the film as well and we shot in my home town where I live right now which is why first name right outside of Philly south Philly Philly born and raised hi my name is Pete because the ground I also helps to produce the movie %HESITATION and I was the first assistant director on this as well as our small part is checked in the movie okay the name we still why you chose that name but I remember you telling there was a real person it was it was a boyhood friend so that okay this is a lot there to try and tease a he does we go sorry then that’s wonderful thank you so Dana I think because you you co wrote the film if it’s okay can I get you to give us a bit of an eye nine of the story and tell us a bit about your character the main character’s lack that’s all right yeah yeah well it’s really about family and it’s about family dysfunction and family function as well that’s about it really old coming to a crescendo on one day on a Sunday when like %HESITATION everybody in Philadelphia does on Sundays during football season we all gather to watch the eagles it’s a big family get together it also happens to be in the story my oldest son Vince’s birth back so there is a quite a bit of a family drama that kind of %HESITATION old hits it one time it’s a lot of things that have been building up for awhile some of the family members have been avoiding each other this is a situation where they cannot they’re kind of thrown in an arena of the house together and then to add to it all it’s %HESITATION the eagles first the cowboys which is our rivalry so generally when that game happens emotions are high and %HESITATION emotions were already high but %HESITATION it definitely exacerbated the situation so it’s just a lot of %HESITATION a lot of family stuff a lot of I am food for any end and file to cheat then tell us a bit more but GMAT what’s going on with GMA and the film sure well it’s Jamie at this point knows that there’s kind of something going on with her husband and the axe I think you she’s preparing to have everybody over you know on this Sunday and she kind of knows the drama that will go down but then when she finds out that Michelle the axis coming not real happy so %HESITATION that’s pretty much is going on and I think that you know Jamie kind of represents a lot of women you know in that stage of like marriage and everything there’s a low and I’m sort of there’s a decision that needs to be made about her relationship with her husband and also she kind of struggles with their relationship with their mother as well which I think it’s pretty much the pre determining factor which makes or even marry a man like Zach anyway Hey what’s that yeah I reasoned that you actually I think that that’s me what’s the psychology behind Jamie okay that’s really interesting and so this mysterious caps and what’s going on with caprese cap in this story Richard was a space later in the film as Jamie’s new %HESITATION husband yeah %HESITATION you know this as years have passed they think they both have moved on and we basically get invited to dinner nana this act characters restaurant managing decides to go there in the end well I don’t want to give it all the rulers yeah yeah I think the drama and I’ll say it they won’t but these two in this film really drives the story I think in families in general whenever there’s multi generations and sampling there’s rivalries that exist whether they’re supposed to or not and this really is a good hard look at that and there are some strong women characters in this film you know because grandma lives with with Zach and Zach’s home and I know she’s a strong character and she’s inside her give him that space if they’re strong women you know and and the characters about place Jamie super strong so I think it’s just it’s just a raw look at family you know what happens to be about Italian American family and sometimes there is that negative vulcun Bach on occasion or you know that mafioso connotation here but you know you take away the Italian American and I think a lot of people will cut doesn’t resonate with a lot of folks out just family in general and the rivalries that exist within the family thank you and that was something I was going to ask actually because being based in the U. K. and I think for a listener she would be on this side of the Atlantic so in U. K. art and Europe and further afield it would be really nice said if you guys could flashlight that kind of intensity because we really only have access to that taglyan American identity through the likes of mafia films and that sort of thing and it would be really lovely C. look at that more in a domestic sphere when you bring up a really good point which is unfortunately and I think all of us can say we all like the sopranos and Goodfellas and godfather as much as anybody does but the preponderance of Italian Americans are not in the mafia okay it is a minute amount of people that actually are and %HESITATION really what the film really is about is about family and Pete said it well and it’s true I mean it could be anything we’ve gotten such a since he got released in to be an absolutely I’m more folks got a chance to see it which were really happy about is that because we’ve just had some such strong reactions from people and they’re not Italian southerners you know who are we gonna waspi southerners and people in California and Hispanic people and African American people that we now we’ve gotten so much response because it really the Italian aspect is it’s just a flavoring but it’s not really what it’s about what it’s really about is being true to yourself and navigating to the Mays family which is not easy and anyway four and I think if I can add to your arm yeah definitely it’s nine element I like the team that is like the flavoring in a way because really all families are like this especially in this day and age where you know they’re step kids and there’s yeah my people are moving in with their parents or their parents are moving in with them so you have a house filled with all these different generations and you know things like that so I think that people can relate to it that way they’re being Italian not but I can say that also being in the Italian American in Philadelphia there’s even like an added I think because I mean lots of times tutors like the Philadelphia version and then there’s New York yeah there’s a very strong presence that like a Italian Catholic people in Philadelphia so with that being said I think that really all cultures can definitely identify with this %HESITATION it especially the dynamics of the family with all of the people living together and then forget my two stepsons like I really I love like a lie because I helped to raise them you know when Jeannie up to research at the same time like one of them dressed me not hello we don’t know exactly surplus right I mean I grew up my my parents are both from south Philly so those Sunday dinners were every week a family meal and it was brave for dean to write the story of his family but at the same time that wasn’t anything new for right it was just yeah I don’t mind my dad comes from nine and he would be arguing all the siblings the end of the day they just give each other a hug you kiss on the you know it’s you can see you next week type of thing so but I get all families are like that I mean I you know do you have siblings Paul I do yes I have an older sister yeah you’re just talking there Pete it’s reminding me of my childhood and the big Sunday dinners with the family and everything yeah right you didn’t know annoyed anyone it’s funny how this all works out because you know Pete knight and scion earth gruppen jelly so it just the way that all of this went down with like auditioning for this but we’re truly authenticated right like we ended up coming here which is really cool because spend most of the cast you know had accidentally entered the teacher with yeah that’s it you can browse making the accent was like we’re all set we we you know it drives all of us crazy collectively here Yorkers doing able Pete Pete was in silver linings playbook yep he was an actor it’s everybody’s playbook it was one of the few people actually had a Philadelphia accent it it you know I mean it’s like you see these people and they everyone thinks that on a Philadelphia accent is a New York accent and that would be sort of like saying that an Irish accent is the same as a %HESITATION a northern England accent or you know %HESITATION sounds the same it’s close but it’s different in a lot of it begin ways and %HESITATION we try to really keep a tribute to that because we felt like it it added to the credibility and I mean it was it was Philly made all the way we had the food a lot of the sponsors were %HESITATION stakes in DNS ravioli and okay he’s yeah yeah and then like even at the arm premier Kerr goes deep that totally Jenny yeah yeah I mean it was in it you may now sign there with a cab driver so it was a good authentic like we we tried very hard to make it as authentic as we can it was it wasn’t a strong representation of your because I routine sometimes in movies kind of beer away from I don’t know too too far away from that short you’re trying to portray it’s a parents in the audience and the minute you step down I mean that the opening scene it’s like oh I know exactly where I am right there’s no pretending there isn’t you know it’s you get right in and and to that point the acting across the board to pay back to us and we helps to cast about ninety if not ninety five percent of this movie yeah you guys did it up absolutely and it was across the board spectacular I’m the performances are spectacular and there’s you know there’s not an A. Lister in the bunch but I would put them up against any A. Lister because I think that this movie is that strong and this one sitting right next to us through such a transformation armed with their character and dean also like you when you watch a story or watch a movie and you’re looking for that character to make a change you’re looking for that internal struggle these two it’s really it’s so good it’s so good it really is well I tell you what when I went back there and I didn’t I didn’t know these guys you know so %HESITATION I was so excited to go back home to to begin with and to make the movie back there and then %HESITATION beating these guys it was incredible I mean they probably tell your you know people always think that %HESITATION you’re in Philly so okay well you know it’s more it’s more worldly in New York or there it’s more worldly and Londoners more worldly and in LA and it couldn’t be further from the truth I mean these guys have done all kinds of incredible work as actors is director I mean I was really honored to be there and work with them and I really felt we felt when we were doing it that we were doing something special and then there were times when we butted heads there were times when we got on each other’s nerves because I mean this was like true independent film making I mean we work we were eyeball to eyeball twelve hour days man it’s like I got two hours sleep last night I was staying in this hotel that was like in the town is gorgeous it’s right outside of Philadelphia all this counts worth more media I’m just just their incredible but all I got in one hotel that was like still not gorgeous in line god I believe he chose that one the land wire yeah it is you would literally takes you to a better what a good man there’s no doubt when they dropped me off at four PM PDT everything was doing a million different things on the stat drops me off and we’re talking in the car and this poor guy had like maybe three hours sleep like like literally six nights in a row these guys would sleep in the work and all day on the show that you know I mean it was nonstop and denied having this great conversation all three of us clicked so well for different reasons than just billing got along with each other so well or sit in the car and peach like listen I love you buddy but I gotta go you gotta get out of my car my wife and I’m like this guy is a man after my own heart which is a fallacy exactly black especially with cleaning right now I’m just gonna say you’re like oh you know this truly was like an indie found and you know we’re all kind of low budget cutting corners and we actually we have some of the people stating that you are not the only okay deny are very much a clean a lot of the time people are quite honestly right late late teens it’s mom I’m in our kitchen is like immaculate rain I’m like super crazy some of the people there were nice and not so much smaller S. nine Greece curling is I’ll even we’re getting rid he these two right well give us thirty minutes set out to clean it before we did it because it wasn’t it wasn’t clean enough for the way dean try to get you noticed it was okay Dick Italian kitchen I mean about you can’t just so so we we help no real time we had seen it myself it wasn’t a production al yeah X. lean right way around here I text this weekend my wife texts or because I was clean our bathroom she she was taking pictures of the click after I’m telling you I can’t tell you Risi with that kind of stuff order is like yeah I dislike the way global on that thing you know I mean you know we were yeah but it’s great when teams like for like any picture and she’s like look at this you scream like that your the grout looks on the yeah now that that tracked me and it’s about the grout that’s exactly it well you’re welcome right near anytime Dane I would like to bring you lace well take a flight out here are you right now I’m in the north east of England seven Newcastle upon Tyne okay this is where I’ve drifted off today yes ET in England’s first semester and I am your mind and then university of Essex okay you too much warmer than where I am up in the Norse there were you originally from I’m from Belfast city you got you got it you heard it yeah yeah I’m from Belfast yes so I mean it just here you’ll talk and cheer everybody really mucking in you know I’m from a small nation that’s really bought land to get any of its own industry so I’m absolutely hearing you when you’re talking about getting accents writes I heard enough dodgy old Xerox by the pros you know so it’s certainly I’m absolutely hearing it all from Serra this is just this is Goldie no this is great it’s great to hear this because we don’t hear enough of stories behind independent filmmaking in the U. S. because it’s so over saturated with Hollywood filmmaking and so this is just so valuables here but all of your adduction experiences as well as %HESITATION the actual film itself for sure really exciting and an invalid peaches that are really really need film with %HESITATION kids they they also run a %HESITATION in in an acting studio in school for our kids and that they they just made a movie called the seven which is terrific and they have %HESITATION do you know they have a lot of the kids that they teach and kids in the area are in it and they just do a great job it’s just really really awesome and %HESITATION I think we need more that you know people people viewed as provincial and think that that means in some respect that that’s a bad word and I think that really that’s really where things are headed you know I mean I really think we need more more of that because let’s face it I mean the world is %HESITATION it shrinking you know it’s it it is it is really changing so I think that %HESITATION when you can give a real flavour of an area but let people know Hey you know what this is not much different than what you’ve got happening in Marietta Georgia or this is a much different than what you have happening in Idaho or or or anywhere it says a lot and I think that %HESITATION I I I can’t speak for these guys but I know that again since the movie came out game day aren’t going out to be I’ve had so many people see it and I’ve had so much of the same reaction where I got my stomach was in knots and it’s a very funny thing because I can’t speak for these guys but for me I would say that my stomach is in knots when that kind of trauma exists in our families I don’t think we have drama bad bad obviously it’s fiction not a documentary but %HESITATION people really get surly really feel it you know %HESITATION it’s so nice it’s it’s a taste of what it’s like on a Sunday in an Italian family yeah every piece of that this function is I was like this is not the birds in yeah right clean is slash but my dad always used like I like what you’re saying about you know these independent sounds like the flavor of that particular area I love that my dad always used to say same only different and it kind of makes me think of that because yeah we are all the same in so many ways but sometimes it’s so beautiful to see a big difference you know to see those little idiosyncrasies of a particular group that just makes them so unique you know about independent films you can really see that you can really appreciate anything really feel that you know what it’s like to come from a certain area whatever it is you know in our director Edgar Bravo did a really excellent job it and %HESITATION really it’s it was like procuring talent and then letting the people do what they do and then he was a really good true north was saying that’s bull crap that’s truthful you know he really he really did a lot to get a real honest performances because no matter how good or bad actors I don’t care if you’re like a master like Jeff bridges eight we all have trips will have little tricks that we fall you know you know it’s it’s a conscious I mean peace Pete directs to bass started direct as well I mean so he could speak to that probably better than I can it’s really hard to get actors to move away from their little tricks little things they do what do you think about that P. I agree with Edgar’s approach to this actors will tell you all day long no I can do it that number track so yes I agree with you dean could endure endure with throw ideas at the actors and being the first day day I literally standing next to him pretty much every shot and I would look at him and I’d be like where is that coming from the field but all it did was a listed these responses in these actors you know that may go against the grain of what the scenes about but it’s it was a tiny little instance of of a reaction or a tiny little moments he would grab it and to that end the guy shooting behind the camera last three which brought yep he he made this from the pictures in this film are starting the lighting you may not know this until I tell you but each character has its own lighting scheme which I thought was just amazing and I didn’t know that until last told us and then he sent us pictures demonstrating how the different hues and the different colors were utilized for different characters and that could just blends right into the movie but if you’re really paying attention to the cinematography you notice that absolutely said searcher and I also well I would be remiss not to mention that %HESITATION the person who played my father an attorney Devin he passed away yeah and %HESITATION Tony was a a brilliant actor such a good hearted guy and %HESITATION I’m really glad that one of the last things he did he got a chance to do something that was really %HESITATION deep challenging thing and he crushed it so love to Tony and we ought we miss them I think about him all the time these guys have noted much longer than I have %HESITATION but I really enjoyed the time that I work with them and and we we missed some so %HESITATION so yeah when you watch the film yes that’s one of his last performances and he crushed it degree right yeah you know what it was this last major performance and the thing is that it’s funny because we were P. nine you know we read the script and then once we decided after you know speaking read at current John and scenes of the Grassley mirror you know the production here in media rate will rerun characterless in I looked at each other and leverage our band we are like at you can amen amen dition for anger and anger is soon as it was that you just over there everything that are you kidding me yeah I know it’s like you don’t like you know like we could have found a better person to play against solid so it was such a good he’s a solid actor and he is from a very young age she used to be a singer on Broadway in New York in the transition to film and television and he has done everything that you could possibly imagine in many high profile situations both film and television but sad to say that sometimes the older you get you don’t really get these meaty roles in that you used to and the minute he read this he was like I love this yeah I want to do this and we were all all of us were honored that she decided to do this because he he really did a tremendous that’s one of his best performances while he said that he’s like yeah I’m I’m really proud of this yeah really not of it and he went out like I said it was like it happened for me yes don’t get us wrong but it’s the best way is Paul all the best you know all the best ways just to give a shout out to the whole cast body only who played my mother brilliant the awesome woman Nick Mike my middle son who %HESITATION just a just a handsome charismatic awesome actor Mikey played my oldest son was just I mean just brilliant just great presents great great acting great job Machel who played my ex really was like just got the essence of of what it’s like to be broke in and be in that situation that she was in who am I forgetting guides I mean obviously Val and Pete both awesome as always I’m working with Val was so great I just love doing the scenes with her and it was like actors like it really is like playing tennis you know you’re volleying back and forth and it was just such a treat to going back to go back and forth with our and it was with PT we have a really nice scene at the end there to do it I just these guys are great and %HESITATION Philly actors don’t get near near the amount of respect that they deserve people don’t realize how many awesome actors you want to just keep making films in Philly so that’s the next step and the thing is that we I just down our hardest scenes the first day zero so even when I was you know it but actually I am so glad that we did and and %HESITATION kind of talked about how important that is to do that anchor I really did I mean what extent tastic teacher’s name and I learned from all this that he said you know when you throw it Schering characters in a given the hardest scenes first it kind of sets the pace for everything else foundation and the white guy not like we just can’t act and it just works like we did and from the beginning on the stairs that date it was hardly worked at all with the ship not on the phone I think we did a facetime call or whatever was just gonna introduce ourselves to one another say we’ll be working together for the next twenty days and and then yeah it was like you know when you meet someone and you feel like old friends yelling you know and that’s the way it feels with dean which is why he calls us the triplets yeah I mean I did this ridiculous get calls when okay finally what you like and you should it’s like the trick %HESITATION so really trips are %HESITATION we’re looking to make more movies policy amazing ad that science and toss say they there’s been so much insight from this %HESITATION quite short conversation I’m just wary of time because we’ve only got a few minutes before as in Texas self testing could you just Sam remind everybody where all the combat system see if mention TV which is available I think for U. S. audiences but just more broadly where is it available for people it’s also on Amazon %HESITATION prime rental and %HESITATION to be is the current streaming deal right now but I’m there is going to be more NVMe %HESITATION it’s also available on video as well and we’re good we’re looking at %HESITATION also more platforms that are coming down the pike and %HESITATION that is not our area of what’s happening so they tell us where it is and we let people know but for now it’s it’s to be Amazon prime and DiMeo and in other countries the best way I would take do you go about renting it is to go to the website what’s the website again being WWW dot game day the movie review dot com and I got back yes whether or not you asked you know %HESITATION absolutely are you gonna put are you going to put the website like right there when you right and they show no that’s for sure and I’m making sure everybody yeah because in check said I it’s it’s just always so humbling just hearing from Jobing filmmakers and actors and everybody wore working their socks off to put it very mildly just keep chugging and keep trying to G. what you’re nothing saying it I mean it just what you’ve achieved is just so phenomenal and absolutely it feels it feels very like regional sentiment here in the U. K. and our dentist while what you doing those and those some lesser known areas of such a massive place so it’s really cool for people like me to learn more about each all of that does anybody have any very brief closing thoughts anything you wear BT burning to say that we have on call teachers so we have a couple of minutes I I think yes maybe we touched on this earlier but I think it’s it’s fair to say and he mentioned that there are some really good actors here in Philadelphia pockets of people exist everywhere right but Hollywood or we assume that you have to go there yeah and we are living proof that that’s not true the hardest part of our puzzle is making sure people see a great movie and that’s all we really want to do at the end of the day yeah having millions of dollars will be fantastic we all agree but we still are going to make great films and we want people to see so the more we do stuff like that so when we meet people like you all up and get the word out there about these films I mean it just helps and thank you problem because it’s people like you yeah okay right now absolutely many independent aren’t seen because you know we on that budget to market like crazy now exactly yeah Preciado great sounds and and tastic stories or really touch your heart you listen to podcasts like this thank you thank you yeah I echo that sentiment as well Paul thank you for having us it was really great talking to you and we did our best to tell the truth and I can tell you one thing in the in the Philadelphia fashion %HESITATION it’s all about never quitting and it’s all about giving it all you got and %HESITATION we definitely did that’s we want people to go out there check out game day if you love the classic films like main street and you up all those great seventies movies that we all well you guys can grow up with maybe I would very young but we definitely try to tell the truth and we definitely try to bring back a style of cinema that we really feel is important and so we hope everybody sees it and we we hope it touches everybody thanks so much for having us we we sure appreciate it I’m missing thank you all thank you have a great rest of your day