I don’t know how many of you have had the opportunity to see Tin Can Man yet, but if you enjoy a very personal, uncomfortable, and intimate kind of mind-trip film, you owe it to yourself to check this one out!
We had the chance to speak to one of the stars of the movie, the creepy/funny/downright scary antagonist of the piece, “Dave” himself, Michael Parle. He was gracious enough to talk with us a bit about Tin Can Man and his other film work.
LeglessCorpse: Tin Can Man was quite the surreal experience on the screen; what went through your mind when you first read the script?
Michael Parle: There wasn’t a script as such, but Ivan (director Ivan Kavanagh) had a very definite idea of what he wanted Dave (my character) to do & the journey Pete (Patrick O’Donnell) was going to go on. We were given very definite characters, frames, certain lines, marks and parameters to hit. Then, within that very tight space, we were free to improvise. Ivan himself works from a very detailed treatment.
LC: How were conditions on the set, from an actor’s perspective? What did you and Patrick O’Donnell do to get whipped up into the kind of emotional frenzies that you displayed?
MP: As I said, Ivan had given us the ideal environment to shine. I think for Pat & Myself we were both very much in the moment. When that happens with two actors, anything can happen. The set was ultra-intimate; the crew consisted of just Ivan and the DOP etc.; there wasn’t a lot of room for a big crew, but that’s what added to the claustrophobia & feel of the film.
LC: Your performance as “Dave” was a real standout; you went from everyone’s favorite uncle to scary as hell and back again seamlessly. Did you have an inspiration for any of the facets of the character? How did you prepare yourself for the role?
MP: Thank you, you’re very kind. I think everyone’s met a Dave somewhere, whether at a bus stop, or on a train, in a waiting room, corridor, or even on the sidewalk; someone you just can’t get away from! It’s a real nightmare scenario. Also, I loved the actor Terry Thomas as a child. He always played cads or toffs in those wonderful 50’s-60’s movies like It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World and How to Murder Your Wife, and yet even though he was trying to kill you or blow you up he was always a rather likable fellow! Just like Dave!
LC: You have a strong background in film, often wearing different hats on a production; did you have any creative input beyond your performance with Tin Can Man? How was working with writer/director Ivan Kavanagh?
MP: It was purely an acting performance. Working with Ivan is a thrill and a privilege; he’s an actor’s director. He listens to what you have to say and takes what you do to another level. The producer Annemarie Naughton (Parks Films) is always a pleasure to work with. Their second collaboration, the outstanding The Fading Light, starring Pat O’Donnell in his greatest role so far (in my humble opinion), and the wonderful actresses Valene Kane, Bibbi Larsson, and Emma Eliza Reagan, is available here on VOD. I highly recommend it! You can check it out here. Their third and newest collaboration together, The Canal , starring the wonderful Rupert Evans and Antonia Campbell Hughes, had its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in NYC and has just been picked up for US distribution! Check it out here.
LC: It’s typical that filming a horror/thriller is usually more laid-back and fun than other movies; was this your experience as well? Any funny memories or anecdotes that stand out in your mind that you’d like to share?
MP: I thought we were filming a comedy, we were laughing so much! One of the funnier stories is on one of the first festival outings for Tin Can Man: Ivan couldn’t’ make the screening and asked me to represent the film, which I was delighted to do; however, I hadn’t actually seen the film yet (it was my first time)! Anyway, to cut a long story short, I spent the entire evening being frightened to death by myself!
LC: The metaphysical underpinnings of the movie are diverse; I haven’t made up my mind whether I think it was all some kind of dream, a dark fantasy fueled by Peter’s depression, or simple madness. At times I felt Dave was a submerged persona of Peter’s, other times perhaps the Devil himself. As an actor, what did you think?
MP: That’s what I love about Ivan’s world/work; he takes the ordinary every day and turns it into a something extraordinary (sometimes even the most frightening unimaginable horror can happen in the sanctity of your own toilet!) As for Dave, I think he’s definitely the devil himself. What do your readers think? I’d love to know…
LC: I’ve touched on the fact that you’ve worked in other capacities in film besides acting; what future projects do you have in the works, either acting or producing?
MP: As an actor I’m having the time of my life at the moment. I’m very grateful to all my friends, the people I work with, directors, crew, cast, and fans around the world for their support. You can currently find me playing the wonderful mystic warrior Yorrick in the fantastic Irish children’s fantasy The Shadows starring Lorcan Melia, Eddie Webber, Emma Eliza Reagan, and Natalia Kostrzewa (check out the trailer here), and as Private Clay in the dark fantasy The Looking Glass, starring Pat O’Donnell, Lorcan Melia, Natalia Kostrewa, Eddie Webber, and Sanne Hulst. It’s available on DVD/VOD here. I also had a chance to reunite with one of my oldest and dearest friends on both films, the great Eddie Webber. Check out our trailer for The Looking Glass and Prior & Clay On A Rhubarb here. Both were produced by the superb Eimear O’Kane Emu Productions & directed by one of Ireland’s greatest directors, Colin Downey.
I also finished filming a mad, end of the world road movie, The Second Coming, which ends (in all places) Ireland. Written by the great Australian director & dear friend Richard Wolstencroft and starring the great Michael Tierney (nephew of Lawrence Tierney and Scott Brady; how cool is that?!), Pete Doherty, and Emma Eliza Regan. It’s loosely based on the poem of the same name by W.B.Yeats. With a cast of millions, it’s going to be released in two parts 2014/15. I can’t wait to see it! Check it out here.
I’m also filming with my long-time friend, collaborator, and great visionary Irish director Gerard Lough on his wonderful first feature film, Night People, starring Jack Dean-Shepherd and Claire Blennerhasset. It’s coming in 2015; check it out here.
You can also check out some of Gerard’s earlier work here, including Deviant, Ninety Seconds, etc .
Also filming with the great Garry Kenneally (one of our brightest talents) on his and Ireland’s first martial arts sci-fi epic, The Revenge Of Shinobi, again starring the fantastic Natalia Cullen & Sophia Scott. I’m Playing Lord Shinigami. It should be fun! Check it out here…coming in 2015.
I’m also shooting a horror feature later in the year with a wonderful fellow, Randall Plunkett, the 21st Lord Dunsany and an award winning director/filmmaker, with his fantastic post-apocalyptic horror short film Out There, starring my favorite Irish actress Emma Eliza Reagan and Conor Marren; I’m looking forward to it immensely! Check out the trailer here.
Then (probably my most exciting role to date), a T.B.A Irish/Oz co –production starring myself as a man driven by a code where debt and retribution are two sides of the same coin as payment served against past sins. It’s directed by the great Richard Wolstencroft. Details to be announced…
Finally, as producer with my partner Kathy Horgan at Dark Window Media, we just finished post on a beautiful supernatural drama North Circular Road, set in modern Dublin, written & directed by Donal Nugent, starring my best buddy Patrick O’Donnell & the fabulous Lorna Larkin. We’re hoping to pick up distribution soon check out the trailer here.
LC: It’s a bit cliche, but we have a staple closing question here at LeglessCorpse; what’s your favorite scary movie?
MP: That’s easy; it’s Tin Can Man… but I would say that!
Thank you so much for the great questions, the review, and the support from all at LeglessCorpse.com, and to your readers; I really appreciate it! I hope I didn’t plug too much (it’s my first time), and I hope that you all enjoy new Irish cinema!
LC: Thank you, Michael; we appreciate it as well!
We certainly wish Michael all the best in his future endeavors; I know that I’m going to be following his work (as well as more of the Irish contributions to the horror genre) , and I recommend it to all you Fellow Fans as well!
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