About The Film

Dead Weight is an independent film produced in central Wisconsin throughout the course of 2011, and released in March 2012. It tells the story of Charlie Russell, traveling the wilderness in the wake of an apocalyptic viral outbreak, in search of his girlfriend, Samantha. As his journey brings him closer to his destination of Wausau, WI, he must face physical exhaustion, malicious survivors, and perhaps most menacing, his own emotional burdens. With his newfound traveling companions Charlie must attempt to find attempt to break his obsessions with the past. He must learn to let it go.

Monday, April 11, 2011


Adam and I will be the first to admit it: filming outside for five straight days in Wisconsin in the middle of April is an extremely dumb idea. But you know what, it's good to challenge yourselves. Okay, that's a crappy excuse and not true. In a way, we didn't have a choice. We want the aesthetic qualities of mid-April Wisconsin to be prevalent throughout Dead Weight... and we had to work around our lead's (Joe Belknap) schedule. If we didn't film April 17-23, we would have to wait until June, and there are multiple reasons why June wouldn't work out.

Here's the quick rundown of how and why Joe got involved in the project. The first time the three of us bonded was over a delicious pan of Adam's enchiladas before we, being huge X-Files nerds, went to see The X-Files: I Want To Believe on opening night. This probably goes without saying, but the enchiladas were without a doubt the highlight of the night, not to discredit Adam's cooking by any means. Anywho, in September of 2010, Adam and I spent two weekends with Joe, the first being at a cabin on a lake for our good friend's bachelor party, and then at the wedding itself. At the time, Adam and I were working together still (at an actual day job, not just on this or the Zombie Walk) and it was the Tuesday after the wedding. Out of nowhere, without any context, Adam goes, "So, Joe Belknap..." and immediately I yelled, "YES!"

We already had a good deal of the script written, and saw uncanny similarities between Joe and Charlie (the lead). One conference call later and Joe was interested. In fact, he got to read a good portion of the script before anyone else. By early October 2010, we had our lead cast and we cannot wait for the world to see Joe's performance. It's been a long road, as Joe has never acted before, but he has been so receptive and willing to dominate the role, and it shows. From the first reading to the most recent one (this past Friday), Joe has come a long way and has shaped up to be one damn fine actor.

Wait a minute, didn't I start talking about the weather? That we are complete and utter morons for trying to pull this shoot off when we could have snow, rain, thunder, lightning, heat, cold and everything in between. Why am I now rambling about Joe? Oh, that's right, because it's his fault. Well, without further adieu, you can blame this gentleman for our (potential) misery, Mr. Joe Belknap:

Joe models his character's boots, and swoons the hearts of millions with a look only a mother could love.

1 comment:

  1. Nothing weirder than finding out your Comm teacher started in a romantic horror zombie movie.