The last time I interviewed NYC native Jermaine "Jay Everyday" Smith, he had a few plays under his belt and was working on his first novel that was loosely based on his life experiences.
Fast-forward to 2016, "Jay Everyday" has published two novels and will premiere his first independent film "A Piece of Me" in Brooklyn on April 7 in NYC at National Amusements Multiplex Cinemas on Linden Blvd. in the neighborhood he grew up.
I recently caught up-with Jay where he gave me the inside-scoop on the production of his upcoming film. Check it out.
GM: Last time we spoke you were writing the book "A Piece of Me." Now, you have two books completed and the film "A Piece of Me" is scheduled to be released soon. How have you managed to complete so much in such a short period? Some people take years to accomplish this. What drives you?
JAY: The desire to see my goals come to fruition and to get closer to the opportunities of helping another person feed their family. I truly do not believe that you're a boss until you place someone else in a position to feed their own.
GM: This is your first film. Talk about the leap of faith it took to get people to buy into your vision of your film? What were some of the challenges? How did overcome them?
JAY: The leap of faith was more of me no longer waiting on Hollywood or for any investor(s) to fund the project. The main challenge was to decide which area of my personal life that I would have to sacrifice the most from.
GM: What are the rewards of taking on a project like this?
JAY: Seeing all involved dreams and goals reached.
GM: Tell me about the casting process? What was the "formula" for determining that the actors were the right fit for the role?
JAY: The process was based on studying the actors I wanted to work with prior to the auditioning/casting phase. I watched via social media how actors presented and represented their brand. Of course I needed talented and dedicated individuals; but I needed to like their chemistry and passion.
GM: How different is film production from play production? Do you have a preference now that you have experience with both?
JAY: Film production to me is a little more detailed because there are so many more details to getting one take right. You may have to do one scene thirty times just to get two minutes worth of footage; as with theater you get one shot at that scene when you live. I love them both for different reasons.
GM What compromises did you have to make on the film and what were absolutes that you would not budge?
JAY: I made the usual compromise of letting the actors grow their character beyond what I scripted. I needed to still hear my original message regardless of how much tweaking an actor needed to do to deliver any lines.
GM: Describe the group dynamics with your cast? Did they mesh immediately or did it take some work?
JAY: The group dynamic had some challenges like other sets may have had. When you spend long hours and days with your cast mates and production team members things can get frustrating and less fun.
GM: Why should people care about the King Family? What is the takeaway for viewers of this film?
JAY: The King Family is like many families of any culture or race. I want the people to take away anything that they can. I have discussed and heard many thoughts in reference to this A Piece of Me brand being that it was a stage play and a book.
GM: When and where can people check out "A Piece of Me" ?
JAY: People can lookout for it on Video On Demand, my forthcoming outlets and www.apieceofmethemovie.com for more info.
GM: Tell me about your new web series "Traffic Lane."
JAY: Traffic Lane is currently a web series about a NYC Traffic Cop with two bad feet that is recently divorced and back home living with his mother. It will be rolling out this Spring on my outlet.
GM: What other projects do you have in the works?"
JAY: I'm also releasing the web series "Cooking In Yesterdays Grease" on my outlet this Spring. It is based on a book that I wrote.
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