Billy Garberina, Director # 5
Billy Garbina is a bit of a wildcard at filmaking, and was one of the few Movie Makers I was able to interview who leans more to the comedic side of independant filmaking, which was a bit refreshing considering most of these guys are pumping out mostly Horror films, Billy Garbina is not one to be harshly judgemental and is seemingly straight forward and openly ready to talk films I was pretty impressed with this guy answers in my interview, my partner in crime talked with Billy over the phone and also seemed pretty impressed with his graciuos attiude and openess to talk filmaking. These are good qualities as , I dropped a few of the filmakers I had talked to over the phone or in person from my Quest because of , a poor and unopen attiude to talk movie making. In my opinion Movie Makers have to be open and willing to share ideas with others, (you should wait to become the great filmaker, then you can get the "I don't have time for interviews because I am so accomplished already , bullsh** attiude".) Its nice to actually meet a filmaker who just wants to sit and talk filmaking every-now-and-then and Billy Garbina is just that kinda guy. He is an award winning Independant Movie Maker and has a few new features in the works for the next year. they are posted in my New Movies BuZZ section!
Name? Billy Garberina
Place Born ? East Coast
Place Grew Up? Albuquerque, New Mexico almost my whole life.
Whats your favorite Place to Visit? Places I’ve never been and the occasionally bizarre locales in my dreams.
Your Favorite Color? Sky Blue
Favorite Sport? Mixed Martial Arts
Your Eye Color? Bloodshot
Whats your favorite kind of Music? Classic Rock from the 50’s through 70’s.
Are you Married or Single? In a relationship
Where did you attend School? Going to New York University as we speak, masters candidate in Social Work, just finished my first year.
Whats your favorite Movie(s) ? Tough question. The list changes and there are simply too many great movies and great directors. If you pressed me this second I’d say Miller’s Crossing by the Coen Brother’s, Leone’s The Good The Bad & The Ugly and Walter Hill’s The Warriors.
Whats your Favorite TV Show? I’m currently biting my nails waiting on the new season of True Blood. I’m generally obsessed with reruns of Star Trek, all series for some reason. The new Battlestar Galactica and The Shield will remain worthy of study for a LONG time to come.
Did you study to become a filmaker? If so what School?
I studied theater in high school and got my undergrad in acting. I skipped film school and went directly into the trenches.
Who are your Idols?And why ? ( Miyamoto Mushashi) the man mastered sword craft enough to kill men with single strokes of a wooden sword in duels, wrote an enduring treatise on martial philosophy and became an enduring pop icon in Japanese culture to this day.
(Nicolo Machiavelli) as a little too accurate in his handbook on politics and got imprisoned. Nobody has written a better book on the core nature of making movies.
(Orson Welles ) wasn’t afraid of screwing with the wrong people.
I would consider my life successful if I manage to be a tenth as cool as any of these guys.
As an accomplished filmaker, have you won any Awards for your work/projects? If so which Movie(s)? and from where did you receive your Awards? what year(s)?
Necroville – 2007 – Best New Mexico Film, Santa Fe Film Festival
Gimme Skelter – 2007 Best Feature Film, Halloween Horror Festival, Tampa Florida
How long have you been filmming movies? What motivated or influenced you to become a filmaker? How did you get your start making films? How old were you when you made your first feature film? And what was the Title of that film? I’ve been making movies since 2000. That’s when I started shooting my first feature, Collecting Rooftops. I moved to LA after college to jump into acting and screenwriting. It occurred to me that the “normal” (whatever that means) road to acting/writing was chocked full of hungry talented dreamers and tough to navigate, so I decided to take responsibility for my own career by producing and directing my own projects. I was 24 and had a script I wrote and directed my senior year in college for the stage (Collecting Rooftops). It was extremely well received and I decided to try to make the leap to the big screen. I’ve been involved in theater since I was 16.
How many feature films have you already completed? What Genres? And what were the Titles? How long did it take for your first film to reach distribution? What was the films Title?
I’ve directed 4 features. I’ve produced 4 Features.
Collecting Rooftops, Necroville, Stiffed, I Heart U. Only Necroville has made it thus far. Stiffed and I Heart in post are extremely promising.
Collecting Rooftops, Necroville, Gimme Skelter, I Heart U. Necroville and Gimme Skelter are out. Like I said, I Heart U has what it takes to go the distance as well.
Gimme Skelter was the first movie I produced to make distribution. We shot it in May of 2006. It hit shelves August 2008. Necroville was the first movie I directed to make distribution. We shot that April of 2005. It hit shelves September 2008 right after Gimme Skelter.
After the 2002 Santa Fe Film Festival, I actually got a call from a major studio interested in picking up Collecting Rooftops, but sadly they declined to option it in April 2003.
I directed my latest features, Stiffed in October 2008 and I Heart U in June of 2009. I was also a producer on I Heart U. Stiffed is nearing completion and I Heart U is still in post. I am currently gearing up to shoot two new features this summer back to back in June and July, titles pending.
How many films have you worked on, (if any) besides your own films? Have you worked with any other Directors and if so how was the experince? Who has been the mnost notable person so far to work with? and for what reasons?
I’ve worked on at least two dozen independent features. At least a dozen have been released direct to DVD through different distributors. Usually as a lead actor and often in some crucial capacity like
2nd unit director or assistant director. I‘ve run stunts, hung lights just about everything at one time or another. On an indie set, that’s more or less par for the course. My mileage in the field has GREATLY impacted my personal process as a director and producer. I’ve been on the set of 6 million dollar features and I’ve been on the set of 6 hundred dollar features. Some things are universal, some aren’t.
Most influential has been Scott Phillips and Richard Griffin, indie writers and directors themselves. I learned TONS about making movies with no money and great scripting from Scott and a lot of things I know about camara work I picked up from Richard. Both of them got me great acting roles early on and both of them influenced my decsiion to focus on horror-comedies since 2003.