News Archives: Full Blood Moon Entertainment: Films that Shift Perspectives
Tuesday, July 26th, 2016
They call themselves “The Four Horsemen.” They have more to do with film-making than the apocalypse but the four gentlemen who make up Full Blood Moon Entertainment Inc. are working hard to create a global shift nonetheless.
Today, however, they are taking a break at their shared alma mater. Sitting in dark suits in the cafeteria, they are telling the story of how four GPRC men came to invent a film genre that’s attracting a lot of attention.
Their short horror film, Bohemian Blood, was initially created for a local film-making contest - the Frightening48 Film Challenge.
It was clear the four were a special team as soon as they came together.
“We’re like a closed circuit,” says Cam White, who studied Interactive Digital Design at the college. “We work really well together because we never say ‘no,’ we never stop the energy. The more crazy ideas the better - eventually we’ll have one just crazy enough to work.”
White, Cam Belseth (Academic Upgrading) and Michael Bourree (Interactive Digital Design) already knew each other and had collaborated on projects before. They met their fourth Horsemen - Gerald Auger, (Marketing Management, Small Business Management) by chance, at a Movies in the Park event.
“He was heading off to Russia to film so we basically said, ‘Good to meet you, Mr. Auger. Have a nice life!’” says White.
Auger was an established actor in Hollywood, having been cast in a long list of films. A Woodland Cree man, he was tired of being given stereotypical roles and has been on a sabbatical from Hollywood for the past six years to work on films true to his ethos.
Despite shooting films in Russia and Australia, Auger was regularly in Grande Prairie to spend time with his grandson. On a whim, White messaged the established actor, asking if he would join White’s team for the film challenge.
Auger said yes.
The four men little knew it but it was the start of something bigger than a film challenge. In time they’d own a company together- Full Blood Moon - and create a new film genre: Indigenous Gothic Horror.
Challenge films must be two to seven minutes long. White, Belseth and Bourree knew right away that a short film would only be the beginning.
“Once Gerald was involved, we knew it wasn’t just going to be a seven-minute film,” White says. “You don’t just get an A-list actor like him involved in your project every day.”
Now their film, Bohemian Blood, is 22 minutes long, it’s had two screenings and has a third planned in Edmonton. It has been accepted at several film festivals, including the New York Indie Film Festival and the Festival International du Film Panafricain in Cannes, France. Casting for a full-length feature is nearly complete. Shooting starts this summer.
There’s no doubt it’s a labour of love. The four men all have producer credits in the film as well has having variously written, directed, filmed and acted.
“I do six jobs on set usually,” says Belseth. “Dolly grip, lighting tech, I direct, run camera, I’m the first AC, I’m a producer and also the gaffer.” It’s a similar scenario for the others. White is a producer, director and actor. He is also the makeup artist.
“I was amazed at their creativity,” says Auger. “I said, ‘wow, I don’t even find this in Hollywood.’”
The other three credit Auger for his patience with the grassroots nature of their project. Sets were often freezing cold and there was no budget for actor’s trailers, assistants or high-brow catering.
“Gerald was just very understanding,” says Belseth. “He flew back three times to film extra scenes.” (From Russia, it should be noted.) “I’m not even getting paid for this film,” Auger says. “That’s how much I believe in this team.”
Auger is involved in other films but the other three are fully invested in Full Moon Blood. Other projects and jobs have been sidelined or let go.
“I finally quit trucking this year, I don’t do anything else, I’m a full-time filmmaker,” says Belseth.
“We’re all taking very big steps with our lives,” says Bourree. “Gerald’s done this before so it’s not exactly his first time but it is a very big moment right now for all of us.”
All four men credit their GPRC education as a major factor in their present success.
“When I work with these guys, who are professionals in their field, I know what I’m talking about and it never would have happened without GPRC,” says White. “I never would have been able to direct Bohemian Blood proficiently without the courses I took here.”
Bourree was focusing on audio as an Interactive Digital Design student at GPRC when he was asked to mentor high school students in a film challenge. It was his introduction into the world of film. He hasn’t looked back.
For Belseth, it was having his eyes opened to his own potential. “I did really well in my courses,” he says. “That taught me that I could do anything I put my mind to. That was very important.”
Auger was, quite literally, ‘discovered’ at GPRC. In 1995, the young man was finishing up his studies at the college when he was asked to participate in the 1995 Canada Winter Games. That led to his first film role, the same year - Gunslinger’s Revenge, starring David Bowie.
That film launched his acting career, which now spans over 20 years and many movies, including the Emmy Award-winning film Dreamkeeper and the Steven Spielberg-produced miniseries Into The West. Auger has also written and produced several short films and series, to critical acclaim.
He says that he’s always been grateful for his GPRC education - a marketing management diploma and small business management certificate. “If I hadn’t had that,” he says, “I wouldn’t have understood the business end of Hollywood.”
The four men of Full Blood Moon Entertainment Inc. have a busy year ahead of them with Bohemian Blood.
It’s only the beginning. They have several other films planned, all with Indigenous themes. “We want to reach back to the basics of what is true and what is not,” Bourree says. “We want to stay true to the Indigenous cultures, background and spiritualties. We want to help open people’s eyes.”
“We want to bring that awareness and understanding - to not only who we are as Indigenous people but as human beings in this physical world,” says Auger. “Like Gandhi said, there’s only one race and that’s the human race.”
An ambitious goal but one this team says they’re already on the path to accomplishing.