Upcoming Flix Spotlight: R.I.P.D and interview w/ extra Tim Jacobs

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Summer is a great time for action comedies! When I first saw this trailer earlier this year, I thought this is a crazy mash-up of Men In Black (but with dead people) meets Ghostbusters… with The Dude and Green Lantern, no less.

After Detective Nick Walker (Ryan Reynolds) is killed by accident, he is recruited into the Rest In Peace Department (R.I.P.D.) and partnered with veteran officer Roy Pulsipher (Jeff Bridges). The R.I.P.D. is an organization of dead police officers tasked with protecting the living from arrogant, malevolent, bloodthirsty evil spirits who refuse to move into the afterlife

Apparently the story is based on a comic book by Peter M. Lenkov. The movie’s directed by Robert Schwentke who apparently passed on directing the sequel of another action comedy RED, and also stars Kevin Bacon and Mary-Louise Parker. Interestingly, both Reynolds and Parker have two movies coming up in the same weekend, Reynolds lends his voice in the animated feature Turbo and Parker is also in RED 2 (review coming soon).

Check out the latest trailer…

… and featurette w/ the cast:

Today we’ve got a special guest on this post…

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Tim Jacobs, a stage actor who worked as extra on the film – check out his profile on IMDb. Thanks to my friend Ashley (aka Tim’s girlfriend) for introducing us. Tim played one of the evil souls (deados) share some of his experience on the set. Check out our interview below:

1. Tell us what your role is in R.I.P.D and how you ended up getting involved with this project

R.I.P.D. is about of evil souls (deados) that escaped judgement and are hiding out on earth. The R.I.P.D. (Rest In Peace Department) is in charge of finding and arresting these offending souls. In the movie, I was one of the Deados that worked closely with Hayes (Kevin Bacon) to bring about the end of the world as we know it.

 The casting process for this movie was unlike any audition I’d done before. Boston Casting, an incredible casting agency in (you guessed it) Boston contacted me about the audition. They were looking for a very specific type of person. They had to be over 6 feet tall and physically fit. The auditions themselves were incredible! You know you’re going to have fun when they don’t give you specifics, but tell you to wear “clothes you can move in.” The actual audition consisted of push-ups, pull-ups, jumping rope, box jumps, and various other physical activities including showing off some stage combat skills. Things went well and they picked a small group of us that day.

2. Did you get to work with any of the main cast?

The part of the story that I’m a part of is kind of the climax of the movie. It takes place on the roof of a building that was meticulously replicated in a giant warehouse. The set was entirely surrounded by green screen. It felt like we were in a giant green circus tent. The actual set was the exact size of the building it was modeled after, and with all the people on it, you could find yourself next to any number of cast members.

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Reynolds, Bacon and Bridges on set

We worked mostly with the main cast (although the stand ins were used from time to time) but we were instructed to maintain professionalism and not get all googly eyed when they walked by. They were all very nice. Jeff Bridges seemed to be one of the nicest guys around, Ryan Reynolds was very focused on the work, and Kevin Bacon was hilarious! We were with them for a good portion of our shoot and we did chat in between takes or sitting outside.

3. What’s a day on the set like? I learned that you have to wear a certain costume to play one of the dead monsters (Deado)?

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Tim in full costume

I maintain relationships with several of them on Facebook even now. Once the call comes though, we would have to quickly move into position as they set up the shot. When you are actually on set, everything moves very quickly and you always have to be aware of the people, cameras, and your Assistant Director.

Everyone was wicked nice though. The director (Robert Schwentke) was very good at letting the actors know what he wanted and how to better achieve it. The entire crew would help you out and answer any questions you had about anything. It was a wonderful work environment because everyone seemed to be on the same page.

The costume I wore was not much more than somewhat formal street clothes. But on certain CGI shots, we got to wear the “grey suits” (see below). These icons of the fashion world were made of a nice stretchy material and had the one size fits most feel to them. Luckily we didn’t have to wear these very often.

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4. I understand you’ve done a lot of stage work in various Shakespearean plays? Tell us what project you’re working on right now.

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Tim in a stage adaptation of ‘Much Ado About Nothing’

The Director (Dan Beaulieu) has taken this show and spun it around much like a DJ remixes a song. In fact, we refer to the show as #Ahranjay (R+J) the remix. The show is a lot more intense and interesting than most of the productions of Romeo and Juliet that I have seen. It features Dubstep and live music as the heartbeat and driving force of the action. Among other things, we will be live tweeting during the shows, and finding all sorts of fun ways to interact with the audience. You can find more information on the show at prescottpark.org or find Seven Stages Shakespeare Company on Facebook. If you are in the area, it is definitely worth the $5 donation. Also, it is outdoors so there’s that.

5. What’s next for you? More stage work or are you looking to venture out into TV or films?

There is nothing like live theatre. There are no second takes when you are onstage in front of hundreds of people. What you do is what you get. The adrenaline (butterflies) I get during a live show can’t be compared with being on a movie set. But movies have their own fun. You don’t get the instant feedback like in theater, but instead there is a long wait to see your art. It is truly a lot of fun, even as an extra, to be part of a movie. I will keep auditioning for all sorts of performing arts, and whoever wants to work with me ultimately decides the steerage of my course.


Thanks again Tim for the interview! Check out Tim on Facebook.


Hope you enjoy the interview. Thoughts on this post, well let’s hear it!