Jean Pesce (Writer - Director)
and Aysan Celik ("Myrna") on set at
the Red Hook Diner in Red Hook, NY
What is "Mr. Lamb"?
"Mr. Lamb" is Jean Pesce's pre-thesis film for Tisch School of the Arts. It stars Aysan Celik, Hanlon Smith-Dorsey, Corey Sullivan, and Michael Cyril Creighton.
Where was it shot?
It was shot on location in Tivoli, Red Hook, and Bovina, New York in the Winter of 2013. Throughout our shoot, it was twenty below zero!
What's Mr. Lamb about?
Mr. Lamb is a dark comedy about a lonely waitress who is in love with her penpal, the convicted murderer - Charles Lamb. I wanted to make a crime story that explored a character’s threshold of loneliness and the margins of her madness.
What inspired "Mr. Lamb"?
I’ve always liked characters that are as funny as they are grotesque. Characters that feel alienated in sometimes hostile landscapes. Hard-knock creatures from the seedy underbelly of urban landscapes. I wrote “crime novels” even when I was in elementary school. Still today, I’m a total sucker for Raymond Chandler, noirs, and old Warner Brothers gangster movies. I am also very interested in the complexity and macabre humor of southern gothic literature like Flannery O’Connor, Faulkner, and Capote, and their influence upon storytelling. I own this great book of mug shots from the 1930s, that I sometimes use as inspiration for characters. They all have such great faces!
I want to continue to make dark comedies --- comedic thrillers. I'd like to create cinematic worlds that are missing the moral framework necessary for producing your typical heroes. I like to mine for the humor inside these dark, sinister worlds, and I’d like to play with the contrast between the two in creating an uneasy tone and viewing experience.
Mr. Lamb was a very, very, very cold shoot. We shot in the final week of January of 2013, during an especially brutal cold front. With the wind chill, temperatures dropped to twenty below zero on our first day of filming. That happened to be the day in which we were shooting the climactic final scene of the film, when my lead actor Corey Sullivan (“Mr. Lamb”) is shot to death. Corey had to fall face-first into the snow, and lay there “dead” while the rest of the scene played out. We did three takes of this, from two different angles. When Corey’s face turned an ominous shade of blue, we knew it was time to stop. Not soon enough,however, for Corey came downwith a bad case of pneumonia. (He thankfully recovered just fine!)