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Flackwell Heath director releases first feature film
A FILM writer and director from Flackwell Heath is gearing up for the release of his first feature film this Friday, which stars Hellboy II and Blade II actor, Luke Goss. Perry Bhandal has long dreamt seeing his own film on the big screen. He talks to Rebecca Cain about his incredible journey.
Perry grew up in Slough after his parents moved from North East India in the 60s.
He had always dreamt of being a film director but it was his dad's death in 2009, which gave him the push to take his dream further.
He said: "He sacrificed his dreams. He had worked all his life to give us, along with my mum, the best opportunity.
"I knew he wouldn't be able to do the same, but he never talked about his own dreams."
In mid 2009 he went on a part time film producer's course which is where he met Spencer Pollard, the CEO of the well-known distribution company, Kaleidoscope, who was giving a seminar at the college.
Perry said: "I remember everything he said made absolute sense to me. When I spoke to him afterwards it was like a meeting of two minds."
Perry then showed him the script for Interview with a Hitman, which Spencer loved.
The story focuses on assassion, Viktor, who was brought up in the slums of Romania.
But after being betrayed by the very men who made him, he has to fake his own death and escape to the UK, where he joins a new gangster family.
Soon they were casting for the film, and after casting agencies could not meet Perry's vision, Luke Goss was put forward by his manager to play Viktor.
Perry said: "I had seen Luke in Blade and knew he could do it."
The filming took place over three weeks in Bucharest and Newcastle.
He said: "Working with Luke- it was great. I had a very clear vision of what I wanted.
"He worked so hard to give me that.
"There is no ego associated with him. It was all about the character. He worked really hard."
Perry added: "I remember sending Luke the final cut of the film. He tweeted it is the best film he had ever been in."
And last week Luke appeared on Sky News and BBC promoting the film.
Perry, who lives in Flackwell Heath, said he would never never have expected the response it has got, as it has been distributed worldwide.
He always wanted to work in film but as quite often happens, his life took a different path when in 1992 he married.
Perry said: "What it meant and what it does mean for most people- I had a job, a mortgage, responsibility which then leaves very little room for something as flighty as a film career."
He worked in IT consultancy and set up his own businesa, which he sold in 2009.
And he said in hindsight, he doesn't think he was ready then anyway as the business knowledge he learnt in his IT job helped him in the film industry.
Perry had kept writing in his spare time, keeping the dream alive.
So how did he choose the subject?
He said: "I am fascinated by the loner- people that live outside the norms of society.
"I am also fascinated by hitmen. They are presented as one dimensional characters in cinema most of the time."
He said he wanted to explore how hitmen become who they are, which is where he explores Viktor's childhood in the film.
The film is released today (Friday) and Perry is taking his mum who lives in Slough.
He laughed: "My mum is more into Bollywood firlms. She is interseted because her son is doing it. But there is no singing or dancing in this one."
For more details go to www.kirlianpictures.com. Click on the blog to see where the film is being shown. The nearest showing is at the REEL cinema in Borehamwood.
Perry is now working on his next film, Vengeance.
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