"LANGUAGE OF A BROKEN HEART" is a fresh, sweet romantic comedy about love's inherent possessiveness, and the realization that it's not how you love, but who you love.
Juddy Talt, the actor/writer who wrote and stars in the new film "Language of a Broken Heart" thinks he's really funny. Oh wait, he is.
Juddy is a down to earth guy with an amazing smile and big heart. All of his energy is poured into this film.
Why did your girlfriend dump you after you graduated from USC?
I actually met her after I graduated from USC and she dumped me because we just fell out of love and I was trying to fight for something that wasn't there. I think I was trying to hold on to that dream of what we could have been and it's hard for me to lose a dream. I'm a big dreamer after all. She wasn't with another man as far as I know. If she were, I probably would have just puked if I walked in on them.
After that, I went to therapy for awhile because it was actually my first real break-up. I was a late bloomer and all my heartaches happened after college as opposed to high school. The stakes are still high. That's why I wrote the film, because it's easy to relate. Every day people go through heartbreak, and for me, I was doing some really funny, crazy things after my break-up. I was going out a lot and I was taking advice from my therapist who was going through his third divorce. Finally, I was like, "Why am I listening to this guy?" Oscar Nunez from "The Office" plays my therapist in the film and it's really funny because he is more of a mess than I am. In the therapy scene, I'm seeking help and he ends up close to tears just looking for a friend to party with. I become that friend and it doesn't go well for me.
How did you receive your representation?
Stalking. Yes... I don't recommend it because it's illegal. Actually, I guess I was persistent. But there is a fine line between stalking and persistence. A fine line that either puts you in jail or wins them over. I called this agent over and over again. I dropped off a few short films at her office. She wouldn't call me back and it just encouraged me to get to her. She finally called me and said, "I want to sign you because of your tenacity. This town will throw you out on the streets like I did, but the fact is, you keep on coming back. And that's what it takes."
What outdoor activities do you enjoy? Are you afraid of sharks?
I really love the outdoors mostly because I live in LA and that means I live in my car! All the traffic and driving around drives me nuts. I go to Montana with my dad and brother and it's the greatest escape. We fish all day and drink at night without a care in the world. My mom and sister usually meet us after our stag fishing trip and we hike and ride horses. I've been bucked off a horse a few times. I love it. I do love to surf but I'm not great at it. I'm trying to get better since I can just walk to the beach. I try not to think about sharks. Thanks for that.
What advice can you give to people who have a dream but who do NOT have a supportive family?
At the end of the day, you just have to believe in yourself. Look, I get it. We live in this vacuum as writers, as artists. We keep creating great stuff but we don't get validation because we just work alone mostly. But you don't need validation from anybody if you believe in it. Just keep creating and good things will happen. The thing is, the more people tell me no, the more inspired I get. I love proving people wrong.
What are you a fan of?
I'm a huge fan of Cameron Crowe and James L. Brooks. T hese guys make great films with so much heart. Plus, they are able to blend comedy and drama so well. I strive to be like them but I have a long way to go. I love slice of life stories as these are the characters we can relate too. I'm also an avid sports fan. I love the Lakers.
How did you fund "Language of a Broken Heart?"
The day to day grind of funding is just that persistence/stalking thing again. Look, when you are raising money for a film that you wrote, you are pretty much selling yourself. The director, Rocky Powell, and I wrote a great film business plan that was graphically designed and had all the necessary legalese. We had a lot of help from our entertainment attorney in drafting investment agreements and such. Rocky and I didn't get paid for this film as a writer or director. Why would we? We want to put all the money on the screen. I don't know about guys that take huge fees up front when doing an indie film. If the film succeeds, we ALL succeed and that is attractive to an investor. Look, if I'm doing a big studio picture, I hope to get the big fees but right now, I'm just trying to prove my worth in this business. And by that, I have to get my investors their money back. And we set it up so they get their money back first. This is a super low budget film and we got the film released. I mean, we are in Regal Theaters, the biggest theatrical chain and we have been doing really well. We go up against the big studio films and we hold our own. This investment is like any other, there are no guarantees. But, we are really happy that we are in theaters as this will drive up all the ancillary markets (VOD, Netflix, Redbox, Broadcast Television).
Tell us about the casting process.
The casting process was tough but made a lot easier by a great casting director in Ronnie Yeskel. My agent, Sara Schedeen got me in touch with her. Ronnie brought a lot of legitimacy to the project. She casted a lot of great films such as "Igby Goes Down," "Pulp Fiction," "The Sessions." We get a lot of compliments on our cast and we owe that to Ronnie. I was in all the casting sessions reading with the actors. Oscar Nunez and Julie White didn't read for it; we knew we wanted them and we offered them the roles. We couldn't get in touch with Julie White but we found out that she was in Dallas (where we shot the film), visiting her mom. So the director and I waited outside her mom's house to give her the script. Here's that stalking/persistence thing again. We were so nervous on how to approach her so we left it on the doorstep and she called us the next day, "I'm IN!" Rocky and I were just floored.
How do you promote your film?
A publicist is huge. A theatrical release is really only successful if you have P & A (Print and Advertising) money. We really don't have much but our publicists have done a great job in each market getting us on local news and radio. I have been to almost every city the film has been released in. I just got back to Chicago and went to a Cub game by myself. I love Wrigley Field. They don't have a jumbo tron! It's so old school. I just drank beer and ate hot dogs and told people to go see my film. That was a great press day!
What do you hope to accomplish?
I just want to get my investors a good return on their investment. That way, I can go out and make the next one bigger and better. Maybe even afford to hire a real actor instead of having me in every scene.
What's the origin of your name "Juddy?"
I wish there was a fun reason for this but the truth is, I don't even know. My brother's friend started calling me that in the fifth grade and it just stuck. I couldn't get away from it. Then my high school teachers would call me Judy. No, it's JuDDy.
Anything else you'd like to add?
I am honored to have this interview with such a great publication. If the readers can find it in their hearts to support the little film, please go and see it. We are currently in Dallas (Highland Park Village), Chicago (Regal Gardens in Skokie), Denver (United Artist West Village), Washington, DC (Regal Gallery Place) and we recently opened in Oceanside, CA (Regal Stadium 16) on Friday April 26th. I promise you will enjoy the film and its charm.
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