Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Actor Simmons still feels chill of a Winnipeg winter

  • Print

Actor J.K. Simmons's digits are all intact, thank you.

The question of Simmons's endangered appendages naturally arises in conversation with the actor, not from his role in the horror film Dark Skies, in which he plays an aliens-are-among-us conspiracy theorist.

It has to do with his experience in Winnipeg shooting the icy 2009 rom-com New in Town opposite Renee Zellweger and Harry Connick Jr. a few years back.

Simmons is a busy actor who has often bounced between TV (Oz, Law & Order, The Closer) and movies, often turning up in prestige films by the Coen brothers (Burn After Reading, The Ladykillers) and Jason Reitman (Juno, Up in the Air).

The experience of making New in Town still registers vividly in the 58-year-old actor's experience.

"It was 54 degrees below Fahrenheit when we were shooting exteriors one night," Simmons says. "I come from Detroit and Ohio, so I know from snow.

"But that was something else," he says, laughing at the memory of Louisiana-born Harry Connick Jr.'s reaction to that especially bitter winter shoot.

"Harry was in a state of shock," Simmons said with a laugh. "He couldn't get his brain around it."

The horror of a Winnipeg cold snap notwithstanding, Simmons says he hasn't dipped in the horror genre very often.

"I've never really be drawn to horror," he says. "But with Dark Skies, I don't think of it as science fiction-horror film. To me it's a family drama."

As for the credibility of Dark Skies' conjecture of mind-controlling aliens, let's just say Simmons is a lot less cynical than, say, his hard-bitten editor J. Jonah Jameson in his Spider-Man movies."I don't necessarily believe," he says. "But I don't discount it either."

-- -- --

Winnipeg writer Bill Fugler wasn't actively seeking a credit on the Internet Movie Database when he was at work in his Wolseley bookstore/coffee house The Neighbourhood Bookstore and Café.

The credit came to him when filmmaker Sean Garrity walked into the Westminster Avenue establishment one day.

"He came into the cafe and asked if I would work with him, Fugler says. "I thought he wanted to rent the café as a set. But he said, 'Do you write?' I said, 'Yes, how do you know?' And he wouldn't tell me."

From this auspicious (if mysterious) beginning, Fugler would submit a story to Garrity titled Killing Someone that would be transmogrified into the thriller Blood Pressure, which is showing at Cinematheque.

Fugler says he loves the film and appreciates Garrity's perseverance with helping him finish the original story.

"It was a story that I started and never finished and it kept coming back to me because I wanted to finish it," Fugler says.

randall.king@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 23, 2013 G4

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Blake Wheeler talks about past season

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • MIKE.DEAL@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 100615 - Tuesday, June 15th, 2010 The Mane Attraction - Lions are back at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Xerxes a 3-year-old male African Lion rests in the shade of a tree in his new enclosure at the old Giant Panda building.  MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
  • Goose sits in high grass near Marion Friday afternoon for cover -See Bryksa 30 Day goose challenge- Day 18 - May 25, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What are you most looking forward to this Easter weekend?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google