Heavenly Duo Shoots from the Hip in LONG TERM PARKING

by Robyn Washington, Hollywood Movie Times

Just off Union Square on the southern edge of Midtown Manhattan Natasha Straley and Gary Lee Mahmoud reunited at the Hale and Hearty to regale me with stories from the film shoot of LONG TERM PARKING.  Both New York actors flew into Texas to lens the outrageously irreverent mobster movie last year.

GLM: Irreverent? My first thought was how absurd it is.

NS: Not it’s not. It’s darling. The script doesn’t shy away from being silly and in some cases a little offensive.

GLM: Some cases?ComicPalooza Gary Lee Mahmoud

NS: It’s all in good fun. There’s a lot of dark things happening in our world today. I think it’s good to occasionally step back and remind ourselves how important it is to keep joy in our lives.

RW: I’ve heard it was a fun shoot, despite the inclement weather.

NS: The ‘earthly’ cast got hit with some crazy Texas weather.

GLM: Sucks to be them.

NS: Luckily our scenes were all interior.  It doesn’t rain in heaven.

RW: Gary, you play an ethereal lawyer.

GLM: Paul (Bright) cast me because I have a reputation for playing jackasses. My character, Tommy Gallo,  is a seasoned yet overconfident lawyer. While he manages to stay focused on his official task as an aide to the dead, he takes a certain playful joy in his intermittent interactions with the recently deceased. He thinks he has the whole system all figured out… and he almost does.

RW: Whereas you, Natasha, were his right-hand woman.

GLM: Hey, hey, hey –  let’s not go there. This was a professional shoot.

NS: I jumped at the opportunity to play Marlene.

GLM: We went there.

NS: I usually get cast as characters who are pretty judgmental. This character was a fun detour down a playful and flirty road.

GLM: Not with me, I just want to point out.

ComicPalooza Natasha StraleyNS: Gary, you are hilarious.  We shot my love scene with Tony Bottorff (who plays Boston Nightly) the very first day. It’s always fun to meet someone for the first time and drop trou.

GLM: I should have been cast in that part.

NS: Oh Gary, you’d never fit in my dress.   Tony was a complete professional.  Everyone was.

GLM: Everyone was very down to earth – so to speak. The shoot was very straightforward. Cast and crew were very easy to work with. Paul knows what he wants in a shot, sets it up, and gets it – usually in two or three takes.

RW: And the film premieres in three days.

NS: I’ll be there! I love working in Texas. I’m so glad I could come back for the premiere and share stories with the fans who already read Mike Kearby’s novel.

GLM: Give everyone a kiss for me.

NS: Everyone? Really?

Long Term Parking premieres Saturday May 23 at 8:00pm at the ComicPalooza Theater in the George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston, Texas. General admission to the theater is for all pass holders at ComicPalooza.   This film is not yet rated.

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