Jacob Medjuck Returns to Summer Camp with 'Summerhood'

Published: November 18th 2010
in Culture » Movies

Jacob Medjuck
Pic: Photo courtesy of Fields Communications
"Summerhood" poster
Pic: Photo courtesy of Fields Communications

Hey guys! Remember that time we zippered up in sleeping bags and punched each other for hours... I made a movie about it. Yeah, they loved it. So many of them are honoured onscreen. Auditioning people to play your friends is hilarious. I got lucky - my friends are fascinating creatures that had to be captured on film. Everyone says it of their own friends.. but you'll be shocked to find out how true it is here. I even took the girl I wrote the movie about to see it. This 20 year old memory of her that summer shaped my life!!... and she forgot she'd even been to camp?!! Wow. Oh well, you never can tell what moments are landmarks for you, and pebbles for others. But it doesn't matter, we all come out the other end as people, with great and different stories to share! 


Is it true that you stepped in last minute to play Careless?


I secretly think the trick to writing a good film is to write every part for yourself, this way you give all the characters good lines. To finance the film however, we needed a name actor for Careless. But when we were days from shooting and no one major had come onboard... we just needed someone. Someone preferably who knew the lines. And that quickly became me. I had loved being in school plays and camp plays - But jumping onto the movie was a ridiculous idea at the time. I had full time job producing, financing, directing and re-writing the movie each day, we should not have added more to it - but we were also in the woods with limited time. We even auditioned some of the crew for parts, and they're in the movie too! In the end I just sat back and directed the kids from inside the scene - and by doing my work as director instead, just listening and watching them while the camera rolled - I finally discovered something about my own acting that eluded me for years when I was failing at over 100 auditions....  don't try so hard. Just listen and react, naturally. Sounds like basic stuff, but I was the last to find out.


How did you get John Cusack on board?


It took almost two years. I tried his agents, his friends, everyone. But couldn't get through. In the end, I shot the film, and in a risky move, we even hired an actor who looked like him at 10 to be our lead. I really wanted Cusack. And then I got footage of the film to the producers of Sideways. They liked it and they called Cusack's agent to say the film was good. And hours later we were negotiating. Thank goodness...


What’s next for you? 


I just sold two animated scripts to the execs behind Ice Age. And I have another live action script I'm polishing. Is there a part in there for me..? That would be great. I would like that. I still can't finance a film on my own name though, so maybe we'll see what happens at the last minute again... at least I'll already know the lines.


Enjoy Summerhood everyone! And thank you for seeing it in theaters! 

Related articles: (Summerhood, movie, Jacob Medjuck, camp, John Cusack)
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