SOMERS, N.Y. – Attention, video buffs, the latest release from Somers’ local student production company, Straight Sixes, is now available on YouTube for your viewing pleasure.
This 10-minute video is a shoot-em-up called “Extraction Point,” written and directed by film student Simon O’Keefe and produced by his friend Jon Dunstan. The video stars O’Keefe and Dunstan in leading roles, supported by local talent Dan Bergman, Lucas Kane, and Jake and Angelo Letizia. Camera work is by Briana Adams, who will start a film program at Emerson College in the fall.
“We filmed entirely in Somers, in a wedge of property between Lovell and Primrose streets, behind The Willows,” O'Keefe said. “Filming takes a lot longer than you’d think. It took us 13 hours to put together a 10-minute video. We didn’t actually film for 13 hours, but we were on the site that long.”
O’Keefe is studying television and film arts at Buffalo State College, with a minor in acting. “Extraction Point” is his first production after finishing his freshman year, though he feels it does not meet his highest standards.
“It has three acts, but aside from that it doesn’t relate much to what I’ve learned in film school,” O'Keefe said. “It’s experimental. Mindless bloodshed we had to get off our chests.”
O’Keefe’s next project, titled “Lionel’s Frag,” will also be shot in Somers.
“It’ll probably take us as long as ‘Extraction Point,’ but it’ll be more legitimate,” he said. “It’s a typical three-act story with characters and a memorable theme. It’s mainly about a boy searching for acceptance from his girlfriend’s parents.”
If all goes well, he hopes to submit it to the SUNY Film Festival in early September.
What is his latest advice for young film students?
“Be unique, grasp people’s attention. It’s also OK to take from other filmmakers. Look who Woody Allen has stolen from: Billy Wilder, the Marx Brothers, Ingmar Bergman. When I steal from Woody, I steal from all of them as well.”