An Interview with Jeremy Scoggins – By Samantha Paradise

River City Heroes

1. How did this project come to be?

About a year ago, Matthew Hibbs posted a casting call for a web series idea he had. I (Jeremy Scoggins), primarily an actor, answered his posting. We started talking about the project and he shot me the first script. It was a decent first draft. Learning that I was a writer as well, he asked me to take a look and make some notes. He was so impressed with the edits, I became the lead writer on the project. We collaborated on plot, characters, etc. Before long, it came to life. Me, having experience in theatre for over 25 years, both on and off stage, eventually became Lead Producer, Casting Director, Co-Director, and about every other title you want to throw around on the project. March of this year, ten episodes were solidified, forty-five actors were cast, a crew was being assembled, and a plan was underway to get the web-series off the ground.

2. What is the goal of the project/story? Is there a moral you’re trying to present to the audience?

When coming into film, someone told me, “A film can have a multi-million dollar budget and the best crew that money can buy, but it doesn’t make it a good film.”  Seeing what Hollywood puts out often, I can believe that. They went on to tell me, that what makes a good film is the script and the actors. Though they would be nothing without the people behind the scenes, nobody goes to see a film solely for the videographer or producer. The goal of the project is to bring a compelling and well written story with a great cast composed of local actors and crew with the main
idea of making great film.

As far as the story’s morality… Well, the logline states, “In a city where crime seeps from its pores, the victims must become the answer to their own prayers.” The story is basically saying that we all have our own idea of what heroism is and what a hero should be, but in reality, there is no such thing as a perfect hero. Comic books create a romantic idea of the heroes, but what happens beyond the panes and pages is where the real story lies, and many times, there is no heroic ending. However, no matter how dark and dismal the situation, we move on and try our best to do what is right, even though everyone’s idea of right and just is different. Thus, in injust times, if you want your prayers answered, sometimes you have to answer them yourself, or no one will.

3. Who is your target audience?

That is a difficult question. I am a fan of so many genres that I have a written a bit of everything in the script. We have heroes, yes, but we have a very intricate story line. I think we have something for just about anyone, really. Due to language, I would say it’s not exactly young kid friendly, and we are a bit lacking in the romance department, though there are nuances there. But if I had to name a type of viewer, people who watch shows like Arrow, Gotham, Flash, or movies like Birdman, Sin City, Kickass, or the Dark Knight films. A comic book crime drama, if you will. If I had to give a demographic, 16-35, which is a wide audience, but I think it is justifiably ranged.

4. Fill in the blank:

If you liked   The Daredevil Series and Gotham   , you’re gonna love River City Heroes.

5. How did this crew assemble? Have you worked together before?

The funny thing is, coming into this, I knew a few of the people on board, but not many. Being the Casting Director, of course, I knew and worked with many of the actors. I had worked with the Associate Producer, Timothy Taylor, on many projects in the past; I could say he’s one of the people responsible for my foray into film from stage. I have actually known Executive Producer P.J. Starks for many years, but until after Volumes of Blood’s release, we had never actually met face to face. Being a first-time Producer, a lot of the extremely talented crew came on board through
people I have worked with before, but never worked with them directly. I can say, however, I feel extremely honored to be working with such a dedicated and hardworking crew.

6. In the world of independent film, there are so many moviemakers in need of money. What makes yours different?

To me, that’s simple. Per the advice given to me in the past, we have a compelling, thought-provoking, entertaining and well written script, with stellar actors, and an experienced, professional crew, all with the drive and passion to make miraculous film. What makes River City Heroes: Ascendance different is that our goal isn’t to find someone to see the series and buy it from us. Our goal is to become the first original independent web-series of its genre to be successfully written, cast, crewed, produced, and filmed locally, but no matter the success, stay local! By local, I mean,
local actors, local crew, local writers, filming in locally owned locations in the Owensboro, KY/Evansville, IN area. There is a wealth of talent in this area, with the potential to make this region a staple of independent filmmaking.

About the film:

Production Company:  Hive Mind Studios

Starring: Jeremy Scoggins, Louisa Torres, Derreck Fraser, Markus Porter, Kevin Arnold, Jeremiah Hinson, Jaron Scoggins.

From writer/directors Jeremy Scoggins and Matthew Hibbs and Executive Producer P.J. Starks (Volumes of Blood) comes the next generation of super heroes. Help stop evil by contributing to the cause at https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/river-city-heroes-ascendance–2/x/11074132#/story

LOGLINE: In a city where crime seeps from its pores, the victims must become the answer to their own prayers.

SYNOPSIS:  The Trio: Knightmare, Dreamcatcher, and Anarchy-X, three ordinary people, called upon to be the vigilante heroes of a city wrought with dark secrets. Plagued with their own personal demons, they bring it upon themselves to become the saviors in a thankless city. Under the watchful eye of their mentor Chronos, who harbors a past of darkness himself, the Trio wages a war on the villains of the city. The sadistic drug lord Animus holds grip on the underworld, while Persephone Masters, a crafty and powerful politician, sits on high in the city and hires the cold and calculating assassin, Strife, to eliminate anyone who stands in her way. The villains play River City like their own personal chess game with the veiled and mysterious Cryofire corporate power quietly plotting all the moves. With the Trio holding on to what justice there is left in the city, they are faced with unexpected challenges both within themselves and throughout the streets as they set about hunting down the men and women who have corrupted their city.