The Arrow interviews Neil Napier
Well...this is a first for me! I got to interview a friend! Neil Napier was my co-star in the feature film "Welcome", where we first met. We also acted together in "Alien Conspiracy: Time Enough" and now Neil is starring in the recently released horror flick "Slashers" and the upcoming porn-star filled gore fest "Samhain". Neil came over to the "Arrow" offices (yes, my room) and we got to shooting the shite. Here's what went down.
A: Whatís your fav horror movie?
N: You know I was kind of afraid you would ask something like that.
A: I always ask that question, duder.
N: I donít watch lots of horror movies; I tend to be in them. "Happy Birthday to Me" is one of my favorites. I love the shish-kabob scene.
A: Good choice.
N: "Evil Dead", of course.
A: Youíre doing okay so far.
N: I like the original "Halloween" too.
A: Nice! Youíre off the hook!
A: Now, you started acting like 2 years
N: Just over two years ago. I started in May 2000 with that movie I did with you bro.
A: Yeah, "Welcome".
N: Thatís it; it was the first thing I ever did.
A: So what prompted you to hop on the acting train full time?
N: A spinal tumor.
N: I had spinal surgery at the beginning of 2000, to remove a tumor that was on my spine. While I was recovering, a friend of mine whoís an actor from Toronto was staying at my place for an audition. Basically we were just shooting the shit, talking about our past lives and all the craziness we had done. He eventually suggested that I get into stunt work. I jumped off moving trains, been in a couple of car accidents and did contact sports all my life so stunt work fit right in. Since I couldnít train anymore due to the surgery, I went to a couple of auditions and ďWelcomeĒ was the first gig I got. When I shot that first scene, it became clear to me that thatís what I wanted to do.
A: Youíve been going all out since.
N: Yeah, theatre, shorts, horror movies, that Alien flick with youÖI ran into you a couple of times.
A: Yeah, we always seem to hook up on some set in one way or another. Now did you learn a lot on the set of ďWelcomeĒ in terms of acting?
N: I learned a lot on what NOT to do. There were things I had to go through and things I had to discover on my own. Looking back, there's a lot I would do differently today on that shoot; but thatís part of learning, right?
A: You bet it is. Now letís hop on to SLASHERS. How did that come about?
N: I was doing anything and everything. Somebody wanted a sixty year old black woman? Iím there for the audition. Youíll see me for an audition and Iíll audition. I was cruising the net and came across this casting posting. I called, left a message, forgot about it, got a call back 2 weeks later, went in, auditioned for two roles and got both.
A : Nice! Once shooting began, how did you handle playing two roles as an actor?
N: I had to go a little ďscootersĒ!
A: Please define the term ďscootersĒ.
N: Theyíre both kind of like cartoon characters. Thereís a WWF bigness about them so it was lots of fun to go over the top with both characters, to act in ways that civilized society would have you going behind bars for. It was really nice to be able to do that and get paid for it. Chainsaw Charlie was a lot like clowning, it was a great release. It was a little crazy switching between the two though. At the same time I was also doing a Theatre project which was 2 one act plays so I had four characters going on at the same time in my life, multi personality disorder all the way.
A: Did you get home and freak out the girlfriend?
N: Yeah, it was kind of exciting for her; she never knew who to expect when I walked in the front door.
A: Would you stay in character in between takes on SLASHERS?
N: Yeah, I drove a couple of the girls, Carolina and Sarah namely, a little nuts. I couldnít get out of character, Iíd put the Chainsaw Charlie mask on for 8 hours a day and went full on Chainsaw. It was ridiculous, but it was fun. If Iíd stop for a minute and think about what I was doing, I wouldíve felt a bit silly, so I just stayed in character the whole time.
A: Well, the film is now out and most of the reviews out there are very positive. How do you feel about that?
N: I feel great, Iím glad people are enjoying it. Itís a funny, campy horror movie. If you watch in the right spirit, itís a fun hour and a half.
A: Fun cheese.
A: Not Citizen Kane.
N : No. But there is a message in there as well, Maurice addressed the whole progression of reality TV and where itís going. Itís kind of a satirical look at that. That message is underlying the whole thing...which is kind of fun.
A: Let's move on to Samhain...which is your next horror flick. Dude, youíre becoming a Scream King!
N: I know, itís cool!
A: A horror whore!
N: At least now itís a different kind of whore.
A: Exactly, no more late nights on the street corners peddling your ass.
N: (laughs) Exactly!
A: In regards to Samhain, you had to work with a lot of porn stars. Now I was "Samhain" for a couple of days and was honestly distracted by all the lovely ladies. I gotta ask...how was your concentration affected by these hot dames?
NL: It was tough.
A: Was it?
N: No, Iím kidding. The only porn star I had a scene with was Jenna Jameson and to tell you the truth, going in I was kind of scared, I didnít know what to expect. But Jenna was a treat...
A: Yeah, she was kool.
N: She was very down to earth; she knew her lines and seemed to be having fun. It was strange though, I had a real ďhow did I get hereĒ moment. That day after you had left the set, I was invited to lunch by Jenna and her manager. I was sitting at Bueno Notte with Jenna Jameson and her manager! I was like ok, whatís happening in my life that Iím here now with the number one porn-star in the world?
A: Iím sure it was a beautiful and heartfelt moment.
N: Yeah, it was a great moment! I found out a nice tidbit of information through that lunch with Jenna. I now know what a ďRusty TromboneĒ is.
A: Iím sure my readers would also be interested in knowing what that is...
N: This is not a G-Rated movie site is it?
A: You fuckin' with me, dude? Give it to me!
N: I donít know how to say thisÖ
A: Just say it straight.
N: Itís a girl eating a guyís ass out while reaching around and giving him a hand job at the same time.
A: HmmmÖ.interesting. You gotta love Jenna and her priceless insight. But why ďrustyĒ trombone? Why rusty?
N: I donít know man, but I just wanted to put that one out there.
A: (laughs) We love you Jenna, you rock!
N: (laughs) You donít return my calls!
A: (laughs) Iím going to put you on the spot here. You got a set full of porn-stars, all of whom have their own baggage, and you have Richard Grieco, who isnít a choir boy either. Did the shoot go smoothly?
N: I was pleasantly surprised. On set, things went smoother than I thought; I, like you, thought it would b
A: The checks cleared?
N: Yeah, I got paid and cleared it all with the Unions.
A: Thatís what counts. Are you signed on for any sequels, either to SLASHERS or SAMHAIN?
N: Iím not signed for any sequel. Every movie Iíve ever done, except for students films, I die. Maurice and I have talked about ideas for a Slashers sequel; itís all out there but nothing is official. Also, since weíre never sure if Chainsaw Charlie is out of the picture or notÖ
A: Well, itís the horror genre, if fans dig the character; you can bring him back, dead or not, it doesnít matter.
N: Yeah, youíre right. Well, Iíd love to do a SLASHERS sequel.
A: Did you have any sex scenes in SLASHERS or SAMHAIN?
N: Nothing heavy but I had a kissing scene in Samhain. Thatís always interesting. You go to work, make out all day, you get home, and your girlfriend asks you: how was work? And youíre like: fine, I was making out all day.
A: Whatís next on your plate? Any feature films, what not?
N: Nothing yet, I'm auditioning a lot. Theatre-wise, I just finished a show and am doing another one in January with an old teacher of yours...Gabrielle Soskin.
A: Gabrielle? Wow, a blast from the past. Hello Gabrielle...if you read this (which I highly doubt), I have to say: Thanks for the tutu lessons!
N: Right. She was your ballet teacher in acting school.
A: Yeah, I loved ballet! (sarcastic)
N: So I have a play coming up with her in January. But Iím not worried in terms of feature films, things always fall into place, I go out there and do pretty much anything and things work out. Kind of like a whore.
A: (laughs) Yeah, we already established that early on in the interview, you tramp!
A: Thanks for coming in Neil.
N: My pleasure Johnny.
I'd like to thank Neil for his time and putting up with my silly behavior. You're on your way boy, keep hustling and being the audition whore that you are and I'll see ya on set. Gotta love the biz!