The movie was filled with plenty of cringe-worthy scenes in which the tagline of the film, "You Are What You Eat," became all too literal. Yet I wasn’t focused so much on the gore as I was on the individual characters, each of them an extreme foodie in one way or another, and the humor that tied it all together, which was writer and producer Eryk Pruitt’s main inspiration for the film.
“Over the course of my twenty-plus years in the food service industry, I've met a wide variety of crazy characters that I've always thought would make other people laugh,” Eryk says. “I just imagined myself getting invited to a secret dinner by some of the craziest foodies I know, and let the characters do what I felt they would do.”
Eryk adds that he could never take sole credit for the final script: “Director Christopher G. Moore came along and polished up some areas, tightened up other areas and put in some really, really juicy bits that he knew would play due to his vast experience in film festivals. Some of the biggest reactions during the Motorco screening came from bits he suggested. Add to that the genius that the cast added. [There were] so many nuances added by the actors and director of photography Ismail Abdelkhalek's framing.”
Though Eryk had nightmares all week that only 10 people would show up to the screening, Motorco was packed and “the audience responded in all the ways we had hoped,” Christopher says. Indeed, the overwhelming applause throughout the end credits, and the fact that Motorco screened the film again about 30 minutes later, is evidence that the viewers gave Foodie two thumbs way, way up.
“The support of the community with this project from start to finish has left me speechless, and those that know me understand that's no easy task,” Eryk says.
The entire cast also came out to the screening, which, Christopher says, was the largest audience to collectively view the film. "This night was truly magical,” says Alena Koch, whose character, Hannah, was named as a homage to Hannibal Lecter in Silence of the Lambs. “The Durham audience was killer! As an actress, it is so rewarding to screen to local audiences and hear such positive and enthusiastic feedback for the film."
That positive feedback also came in the form of donations and poster sales, which raised enough money to send Foodie off to more than 15 festivals and opened up the possibility of taking the film to other local venues within the Triangle. The cast and crew are looking to screen the film next in Raleigh.
Foodie also has upcoming screenings in June at the ConCarolinas Short Film Festival in Charlotte and at Fright Night Film Fest in Kentucky. “Of course, our big plan is to possibly send it off to some of the bigger, non-genre festivals out there,” Christopher says. “Right now we're looking to send it to festivals such as Sundance and the Toronto Independent Film Festival. It may be a long shot, but it's worth taking the risk, because we believe in the movie.”
To keep up with how Foodie is doing and find out about future screenings, visit its website, Facebook, Twitter and sign up for the newsletter (coming soon). “We'd like everyone to stay involved since they've helped us get this far,” Eryk says. “We've still got a ways to go and we'd love to have folks show up to festival screenings and tell their friends and help bring attention to the rich, vibrant Triangle film scene. There are great things being done here and I am humbled and awed to get to be a part of it.”