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John McKinney, Director of Hector Quince: Author

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"Hector thinks of himself as a mix of Henry Miller, Ernest Hemingway and Hunter S. Thompson." So says co-writer and director John McKinney of Hector Quince, the titular character of his short film Hector Quince: Author, premiering tonight at Cinespace. In it, Hector, having just completed his first successful novel and contemplating his next move, inadvertently ends up in the middle of some seriously dangerous happenstance that might just be his own fault. McKinney took some time to answer a few questions about the film before it premiers. Here's what he had to say:

Tell us about Hector.

With his successful first novel Cumulous Cloud published, Hector is attempting to quiet down and live like a true disciplined artist so that he might realize his potential as the greatest American writer EVER.

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Nothing too ambitious then. So what's happened?

He sees himself in the tradition of semi autobiographical novelists/writers - he has indulged himself with the pursuit of experience but must deal with the mortal reality that too much play will muddy his creativity.

Hector is played by David Neher, who you've worked with frequently, especially in the webseries Chasing Donovan. Did you have anyone else in mind for the part, or was it the natural outcome of having worked together so often?

David was my first choice for Hector. We actually came up with the Character together.

How did you come up with the him? Is he based on anyone?

Hector Quince came from my interest in the self-accepted celebrity that recognized artists buy into. It's a lot of fun, but it can ultimately be their undoing.

There's an entire television genre devoted to it!

It takes a lot of humility to accept that, as a human being, one has limitations and if the craft is what is most important, you're going to have to make some sacrifices in order to grow [as an artist].

You created the cgaracter with David. Did you co-write the script with him?

Actually I co-wrote it with Jason Meier (he plays a bad guy named Jackson). I directed, shot and edited it as well.

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Tell us about the shoot.

4) We spaced the shooting out over a month, because some of the shoots required around ten people (cast and crew), and everyone worked for free. And for the fun of it so.

Because of the budget, I assume you did these shoots on the DL?

Yeah, no permits or anything like that.

Any other difficulties getting it together?

Because everyone was on their own time, the biggest difficulty we had was lining up a day when the cast and crew could come together. We shot in the Channel Islands harbor, Ojai valley and Coachella Valley and, for example, for the Coachella valley shoot, we had a caravan of 8 cars driving to the desert and then back and forth to the different locations.

We did get the cops called on us during one scene where we were using guns. A lady must thought a real kidnapping was taking place>


Yeah, though the comedy for us is that this lady thought it was a real kidnapping even though she must have heard "cut" and "action" more than once. She reported "multiple kidnappings", and the cop showed up gun drawn.

how did you get out of that?

Luckily, one of the actors who happens to be deaf walked up to the cop and told them it was his project for school. The cops calmed down and even let us off the hook for not having a permit.

That was quick thinking.

Yeah, always have the deaf kid handle the police.

The premier party for Hector Quince: Authoris tonight at Cinespace from 8 PM to 10 PM. Admission is free. The film starts at 9, with DJing before and after.

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