EXCLUSIVE: Releasing next Tuesday on VOD, “Same Boat” tells of a time-travelling assassin who falls for his next target while hunting her down on a cruise ship. Chris Roberti plays the lead role and directed the film.
GVN: Where do you hail from Chris?
Chris: I live in Brooklyn with my wife and young daughter.
GVN: And did you kick off your filmmaking career there?
GVN: How’s the film game down there?
Chris: Everyone’s a filmmaker. I’m lucky that I’ve found some great collaborators along the way. Foremost among them is Josh Itzkowitz. Like I said everyone wants to make film but Josh gets them finished. We would not be talking if not for Josh.
GVN: I imagine everything has stopped for you at the moment, with the pandemic?
Chris: Yes. I hope you and your loved ones are doing well.
GVN: Are you going to keep busy by working on some new projects while in lockdown?
Chris: I’m staying with my in-laws who are in need of care, so that and taking care of my daughter take a lot of time. I try to write a little each day – 15 minutes or so. Trying to film some goofy things from afar.
GVN: Do you think Same Boat is the perfect film for these times?
Chris: I might as well say yes.
GVN: It’s interesting that it’s set on a cruise ship. At any time, throughout I imagine it didn’t even enter your mind that this place would one day become a floating hub for a virus!?
Chris: No, Josh and I talked about trying to do some ADR that makes mention of what’s happening now, but it never crossed our minds.
GVN: You filmed the movie secretly on the boat, too?
Chris: We did. It was thrilling. We took the same 4 day cruise back to back, to allow for the possibility of reshoots and to swap out cast.
GVN: Did you have to wait until staff weren’t looking before cameras rolled?
Chris: We were very timid at first, and we used a camera that looked like a normal dslr, and used lavs. So we easily blended in with all the other civilians. We soon learned that basically no one cared what we did, though. The main reason we tried to be discreet was so that the other passengers didn’t act unnaturally.
GVN: What kind of troubles did you run into, filming on the cruise?
Chris: Darin Quan our DP got seasick, but worked through it.
GVN: Where was the cruise going to, anyway?
Chris: It left from Miami, went to Key West, then to Cozumel, and then back to Miami.
GVN: Did you always intend on doing everything practical in the film – or did the budget essentially dictate that you had to?
Chris: We realized that shooting on a boat had to be very simple, and very fast: we shot 90 pages in basically 7 days. So we couldn’t do a big effect heavy film. A little low-fi touch of magic is fine with me.
GVN: Any time-travel classics you used for inspiration?
Chris: Terminator and Terminator 2. We also used Monsters Inc. – which is not time travel but explored the idea of thinking you had the right approach to solving a problem, but then realizing there is a larger, and more generous way to solve the problem.
GVN: If you could remake any film, what film would it be and why?
Chris: This doesn’t count as a remake but I’d like to do a season of the Great British Bakeoff with just the people who lost in the first week.