The SCENE Journal
(Nov. 16 - Dec. 10, 2004)
Release - November 8, 2004
For more information, contact:
Boston: Andrew Simpson - email@example.com,
or Amy Hamel - firstname.lastname@example.org
NYC: Jonann Brady - email@example.com -
General: Jay Burke - firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on the film “1918,” visit:
Road to “1918”
Fantasy and reality converge during shoot of
Red Sox fan film,
to be released in December
in 2001, when writer/director Jay Burke started work on his
upcoming short film, “1918,” the premise –
two lifelong Boston Red Sox fans trying to score tickets to
the World Series – seemed like complete fantasy.
Like all avowed members of Red Sox Nation, Burke was used
to disappointment and heartbreak.
But as casting began in the summer of 2004, the Red Sox were
fighting their way toward an American League Wild Card slot.
When cameras began rolling in early October 2004, the team
was on the brink of overcoming a three-game deficit to beat
the villainous New York Yankees for the AL pennant, shocking
the world with the biggest comeback in sports history.
And on the day he finished shooting, October 25, 2004, the
Red Sox boarded a plane for St. Louis, where, two days later,
they would win the World Series for the first time since…
“Shooting when we did was a pretty crazy coincidence,”
said Burke, 33, who grew up in Dartmouth, Mass. “We’d
shoot for 12 to 14 hours during the day – trying to
get everything we needed and stay on budget, then I’d
drag myself home to catch the game every night, then get up
at 5 a.m. to shoot again. We all did it. We kept waiting for
someone to collapse, but it never happened. We had a phenomenal
cast and crew. The absolute best.”
“1918,” which is Burke’s thesis project
for his M.F.A. degree from Columbia University, will be due
for screening in late December.
While the Red Sox World Series victory added excitement and
authenticity to the shoot, “1918” is essentially
a story about friendship and loyalty, says Burke. “I
think in a lot of ways being a Sox fan is shorthand for life
here in New England. We tend to wear our hearts on our sleeve,
and tell it like it is. Being a Red Sox fan - at least up
until now - has been about always being true to your principles,
and never giving up, no matter what.”
stars Michael Cuddire as Tim, the emotional center of the
story, and Jeremy Brothers, a standout comedian from Boston’s
Improv Asylum as his bumbling but hilarious sidekick, Petey.
The movie also features Joey Vacchio as Joe and Michael Mazzeo,
who recently played the lead role in the Rhode Island feature
film "The Tournament," as Tony. For more information
on the cast and crew, please visit the web site, www.1918film.com.
dismisses any comparisons to the upcoming Farrelly brothers’
film, “Fever Pitch,” another film about the Red
Sox and their fans. Burke points out that most of the cast
(including the two main characters) and crew of “1918”
are from Massachusetts, while “Fever Pitch” stars
New Yorker Jimmy Fallon and Hollywood-reared Drew Barrymore.
Further, "1918" was written as an original movie
about Sox fans, while "Fever Pitch" is a remake
of an English movie about soccer fans.
Farrelly's are a huge talent, and I own DVDs for every one
of their films. In fact, I think one of the Farrelly's went
to Columbia himself. But, and I hope they won't come after
me for this, I think our film more represents the true spirit
of the Sox fan," Burke says.
abandoning the corporate path to pursue a film career, Burke
worked for six years as a consultant for Andersen Consulting
(now Accenture) in Boston, Chicago and Sydney, Australia.
He caught the film bug while attending the University of Notre
Dame, when Tri-Star Pictures came to the campus to shoot “Rudy,”
about a pint-sized but dedicated football player who inspires
his team. On a whim, Burke signed up to become an extra.
The film was Burke’s first insight into the mechanics
of filmmaking – and he was impressed. “My appreciation
for film didn’t come from any fascination for movie
stars – it came from watching it get done and seeing
how everything fits together,” he said. “Observing
the process and then the end result, it all made perfect sense
to me. Working on ‘Rudy’ really had a big effect
He also went on to work on “While You Were Sleeping,”
“I Love Trouble,” and the re-make of “Miracle
on 34th Street.”
While Burke finishes editing “1918,” he’s
also looking ahead to other projects, including a feature-length
film he wrote called, “Whaling City,” which is
set in New Bedford, Mass. and tells the story of a struggling
fishing-boat captain and a beautiful scientist who work together
to resuscitate the dying fishing industry and community.
Burke understands that making it in the film business is an
uphill battle, but isn’t about to throw in the towel.
“If the Sox can win the World Series, anything can happen,”