Peter Facinelli wrote and produced his new film, “Loosie,” but is better known as the strict, serious doctor in the “Twilight” series and the father of Robert Pattison—yeah, right, his father. But in the vampire world anything is possible. In his new film, as James Brown would say, Peter’s got a brand new bag. And in his bag is stolen loot. So to get the interview started on a funny good foot, The Film Strip asked Peter how could he steal from a Black woman? He laughs and says, ‘She had some beautiful jewelry.” Then, of course the next question was about picking this particular project?
Well, I grew up here and New York is such a great character. I really wanted it to play a great role in this film and it was almost like my homage to New York. But at the same time the story in itself is very sweet and simple. I wanted to have the New York backdrop so that it brought the edge. I wanted to have that edgy backdrop for the sweet story.
THIS WAS BEFORE ‘TWILIGHT’?
Yeah, this was like seven or eight years ago. I wrote the film in three weeks and it took me seven or eight years to get it made. It was a longer journey for me, but I remember just being on the subways and having an idea for a pickpocket movie. I thought that would be an interesting world and then I started fantasizing about what this guy’s life was like and why he pick-pocketed and what his world looked like and wouldn’t it be fun if he still lived with his mom and why he pick-pocketed was a key thing for me, too. I was also very influenced by ’70′s movies. I love ’70′s movies and how they’re character driven. I love Paul Newman movies and [Steve] McQueen movies where they play these anti-heroes that are flawed, but you root for them. I wanted to create a character like that, that was flawed but that you rooted for.
WHY DID YOU PICK MICHAEL CORRENTE AS THE DIRECTOR?
Well, Michael is from Rhode Island, but he has a very east coast sensibility. There was a movie that he was doing ‘Brooklyn Rules,’ and I’ll tell you a funny story about that. I auditioned for this movie, ‘Brooklyn Rules,’ when there was another director onboard. I went in and I read and it was about a kid that grew up in Queens in the ’80′s. I was like, ‘I grew up in Queens in the ’80′s. I’m perfect for this.’ I went in and I read and I called my agent and I said, ‘How did I do?’ They said, ‘They don’t think you’re right for it.’ I was like, ‘How could I not be right for that? I lived that world.’ So, I was kind of bummed and then the movie never got made, and then a couple of years later Michael Corrente was attached to it and he actually went through the old audition tapes from the previous director, saw my audition and said, ‘This kid is perfect.’ So, it just goes how to show how subjective acting is because one director was like, ‘He’s completely wrong.’ Then another director off of the same tape was like, ‘This is the only kid that can play this role.’
IN ‘LOOSIES’ WOULD IT BE SAFE TO SAY THAT BEHIND EVERY CHANGED MAN, STANDS A WOMEN?
Oh, for sure, and I think it’s definitely evident in this film. Bobby has a certain perception of who he is which gets shattered. Someone once said that when you have a good woman you look in the mirror and all the truths come out. She becomes a mirror for all the real truths and his perception that he is doing the right thing. He’s trying to protect his mom. He’s trying to make good on his father’s debt. His mom needs him. Yeah, he steals a couple of dollars here and there, but no one is going to go home being broke over it. So, he finds a way to make excuses for all these things that are flaws within him, and when she holds up that mirror to him he starts to realize, ‘Okay, this isn’t good.
BESIDES THE FACT THAT VAMPIRES HAVE A GREAT CALLING CARD, WHAT DID YOU LEARN FROM THAT EXPERIENCE?
I’ve done so many different characters and so this was for me another. It was something different than I had ever done. That’s what was appealing about it for me as an actor. I thought, ‘Okay, this is a world that I haven’t explored yet,’ and I liked that character and I hadn’t played him before. So, I was very intrigued by that world. I love Catherine Hardwicke and I thought, ‘I’d love to work with her. She’s a talented filmmaker.’ But I think mostly what I got out of that was this huge fan base that actually came and saw this film. As an actor you go and you do your work and then you don’t know who’s showing up. I mean, it could be five people that see it and it could be ten million people who see it. You kind of give it away and you have no control over if that film is successful or not. This film was very successful, ‘Twilight’ was, and it opened my career up to a whole other fan base who all of a sudden looked at me and said, ‘I like this actor,’ and went back and started looking at my work previous to that.
THE HARRY POTTER CAST TALKED A LOT ABOUT THE SEPRATION ANXIETY WHEN IT WAS ALL OVER. ARE THE CAST MEMBERS OF ‘TWLIGHT’ STARTING TO GO THROUGHT THAT?
I don’t think that we’ve felt it yet because have another film coming out. So, I think in November next year we’ll all be together doing press for it. I mean, it’s still talked about in interviews because it’s still currently going on. So, even though we finished the filming process of it I think I’m quite happy to have now completed that process of it. And now getting to sit back and just enjoy it as a fan.