Filmmaker Brian Metcalf (Living Among Us) has a new film coming out, Adverse, starring Academy Award® Nominee Mickey Rourke, Academy Award® Nominee Sean Astin, Golden Globe® Nominee Lou Diamond Phillips, Golden Globe® Nominee Penelope Ann Miller, and more. Not only did Metcalf write, direct, and produce Adverse, he also acts in it as well. The talented filmmaker sat down with us to discuss the film which is due out on February 12, 2021.
In the gritty, intense urban thriller, one man is on a quest for revenge. Struggling to make ends meet, rideshare driver Ethan (Nicholas) learns his sister Mia is deep in debt to a sleazy drug dealer. When Mia goes missing, Ethan discovers that crime boss Kaden (Rourke) is behind the act, and to get close to him Ethan takes a job as Kaden’s driver. One by one Ethan hunts down members of Kaden’s crew to wreak bloody vengeance as he prepares to confront Kaden himself.
HorrorFuel: “How did Adverse come to be?”
Brian Metcalf: “It’s based on an experience I had. I had an ex-girlfriend that I was dating who ended up getting herself in with a bad crowd and was on drugs. That’s kind of how the idea came about, and I turned it into a treatment, and it went from there.”
HorrorFuel: “I’m sorry you and she went through that. I know firsthand how tough that can be. I went through the same thing with an ex.”
Brian Metcalf: “It was a tough experience.”
HorrorFuel: “The cast of Adverse is awesome. I’ve been a fan of Mickey Rourke since Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man. Oops, I’m showing my age there. And Lou Diamond Philips has always been a good actor. I watch him every week on The Prodigal Son.
Brian Metcalf: “Yeah, I have been a fan of Rouke’s forever. He seems to be in every generation all the way up to Iron Man 2, and Sin City. The Prodigal Son is great.”
HorrorFuel: “So many great actors! If you will tell us a little about the story in Adverse?”
Brian Metcalf: “It’s about a Rideshare driver and he finds out that his sister is involved with drugs and he can’t get her out of it. He has to go to extreme measures to help her.”
HorrorFuel: “The trailer teases a lot of action and brutality.”
Brian Metcalf: “There is a lot of action. It’s a thriller/action movie. There’s definitely a lot of brutality.”
HorrorFuel: “It’s out this February right?”
Brian Metcalf: “February 12th. You can find a list of theaters and cities on the movie’s website.”
HorrorFuel: “That’s handy. If you don’t mind me getting a bit personal, what was it like for you living in that situation with the person that inspired Kelly Arjen’s character, Mia, so that viewers can better understand her?”
Brian Metcalf: “The reality is that if the person doesn’t want to be helped there is nothing you can do. So you just watch it happen. That’s the thing about it. There was a really tough feeling, and you feel empty. There’s just nothing you can really do unless they want to be helped.”
HorrorFuel: “I hate anyone has to go through something like that.
What can you tell us about the main characters? Who are they?”
Brian Metcalf: “You have Ethan, the RideShare driver, who has a criminal past. Now, he’s trying to turn his life around. He’s got a steady job and everything and he’s trying not to go back to his criminal ways. That’s a big part of things, he’s caring for his sister because their mother died. There is no one else to take care of her but him and he’s not very good at it. He doesn’t know how to be a parent. He was raised in a heavily Latino community but he himself is white. He is a product of his environment. That kind of comes from me, I was born in South Korea but I was raised in Ohio. I was surrounded by an all-white community. I was the only minority in that area. So a lot of those experiences sort of come off of that.
Then we have Kaden who is played by Mickey Rourke. He is basically is this drug dealer whose done it all and been at the top for a while. He’s getting tired, and he’s sick and he’s basically just going through the motions now. We learn that he himself had his own dreams and aspirations that weren’t necessarily being a drug dealer.
Then there’s Mia, Ethan’s younger sister and she got involved with the wrong people. She’s desperate for friendship after their mother died and she got involved with a boyfriend who happened to be a drug addict and they steal together. He’s part of why she’s in the situation she’s in. Those are the main characters right there.
Horror Fuel: “I see. It’s a complex and bad situation for both siblings. The cast is phenomenal though.”
Brian Metcalf: “Yeah, it is. You’ve got Thomas Nicholas who is from the American Pie films, Mickey Rourke, known for grittier, darker films. You have Sean Astin from Lord of the Rings, Jake Austin. It’s just a huge group of people you wouldn’t expect to see together from different types of movies. They are all great.
HorrorFuel: “I love unexpected combinations. We could use more unexpected things in every genre.”
Brian Metcalf: “We definitely do. Sean Astin always plays a nice guy, but in this, he plays a seedier type of character, which was a lot of fun to watch him do. He had a lot of fun with the role. Lou Diamond Philips plays a psychologist in this. As I said, it’s great to see these people come in and put all their talents together.”
HorrorFuel: “There is definitely a lot of really talented people in the film.
Was Adverse filmed before or during the pandemic?”
Brian Metcalf: “It was filmed before the pandemic. We finished right as the pandemic started. But it did cause us to change the release date. We had planned for an October release, but the pandemic caused all types of issues for us still.”
HorrorFuel: “I think it affected a lot of films. But I’m glad that your film is getting released now.”
Brian Metcalf: “Yeah, absolutely. We’re just very fortunate that we are getting the film released. And getting it out there to people during this time. Obviously, the pandemic has caused a lot of problems for a lot of people. It’s just a terrible, terrible thing for everyone. I’m hoping it all clears up at some point.”
HorrorFuel: “Absolutely. I hope it does too. What message do you hope viewers take away from the film?”
Brian Metcalf: “The message I want viewers to take away is this film is about people making bad choices and for people to see what the choices did to them and how some made better choices and how those affected them. It just so happens that most of the characters have made bad choices. Some of the people who made bad decisions correct their mistakes. Lou Diamond Philips’ character was a troubled youth, but then he turned his life around, and now he’s helping troubled youth. I hope people will think of it like it’s one of those things where people have to live with the choices they have made, sometimes they’re good, sometimes they are bad. It’s about how you chose to turn your life around.”
HorrorFuel: “That’s a complex subject and I’m glad that you explore it in this film.
If you had four words to describe Adverse, what would they be?”
Brian Metcalf: “Oh, wow. I’d say gritty, dark, crime, thriller [laughter]. That’s really a hard thing.”
HorrorFuel: “Awesome! I think you nailed it.”
Watch Adverse in select theaters on February 12, 2021, followed by its release on Digital, On-Demand, and DVD on March 9th from Lionsgate. Visit the award-winning film’s official website for more details and a list of where you can watch it. And follow filmmaker Brian Metcalf on Instagram and Twitter to stay up to date on his projects.
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