Welcome back, Alexander!
Thank you, Jeff! It’s good to be back to Action Reloaded and I appreciate all the support!
Congratulations on the re-release of your first movie, Moscow Heat! You must be thrilled that the movie is being re-issued?
Yes! Moscow Heat has started my career as a producer and action movie star so it feels great to see this film out again! Moscow Heat is available on Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Vudu and other popular platforms so your readers can check it out right now.
You not only starred in Moscow Heat, but you also wrote it, what inspired you to write this story?
I moved to LA from Moscow in 1999. I studied English in UCLA Extension and learned acting in Lee Strasberg Institute. But by 2002 I realised that Hollywood studios would only offer me parts of stereotypical “bad Russians”. I didn’t want to play it. For that exact reason, in 2000-2001 I refused to participate in Columbia / Tristar TV show BattleDome and in NU Image / Millennium action adventure “The Order” starring JCVD. All of that inspired me to create Moscow Heat – my own story about Russian action hero
There was a great cast attached, how did you get them on board?
I wrote the script with my friend Robert Madrid. Legendary Michael York liked it and signed to co-star in the movie. Adrian Paul wanted to act with Michael and signed too. Later we got Richard Tyson, Joanna Pacula and Andrew Divoff. And don’t forget that Moscow Heat’s budget was 1 100 000$ (a lot for an independent film) so we were able to afford this great cast.
When we last spoke you had mentioned a sequel to Black Rose, has there been much progression on the sequel?
Did I tell you that Black Rose was actually a Moscow Heat sequel? We had to change it a little in the end of the day but the character was the same – Russian cop named Vlad! Black Rose 2 will happen but I have to shoot Savage Attack first. This film is my return to hard core action! Production will start this April, director is great Joe Cornet.”
More recently you have starred in your first western movie Assault On Rio Bravo – congratulations – what was it like filming with Olivier Gruner and Matthias Hues?
Thank you very much, working on this film was huge fun! I’m a fan of Sergio Leone’s classic Westerns and Clint Eastwood is one my heroes! Assault on Rio Bravo was a great adventure and I had a blast working with Matthias, Olivier, Joe Cornet, Anna Oris and Natalie Denise Sperl. By the way, do you remember Savate? Olivier Gruner and Assault on Rio Bravo’s fight choreographer Art Camacho re-created some fights from those great action film!
Does your character get to have a showdown with any of them?
Of course! Matthias Hues plays a really bad guy and he had to be stopped. I don’t want to spoil it but wait for the real stand-off!
What was it like working with director, Joe Cornet?
I was lucky and had a chance to work with a lot of great directors: Walter Hill, Sofia Coppola, Soviet legend Eldar Ryazanov and others. But Joe Cornet is the best director I’ve ever worked with! He’s always prepared, always positive, always on time, always fun to work with etc. We made two movies together already and will start another one shortly.
Also, another huge congratulations, as Assault On Rio Bravo got the greenlight for a sequel! When does it start to shoot? Will Joe be back to direct?
Thanks, this was a nice surprise! International distributors liked first film a lot and it wasn’t even released yet! They watched it at the film markets. Joe will be back to direct and co-star as well as Matthias and Anna Oris. We’ll shoot Assault on Rio Bravo 2 this summer or fall.
You also reunited with Joe for horror movie Night Of The Caregiver, what attracted you to the horror genre?
Horror is one of my favourite genres. But I never had a chance to make this kind of movie for some reason. So I read Craig Hamann’s script and thought “It’s time!” Joe Cornet decided to direct and co-produce it with me. Eileen Dietz, Natalie Denise Sperl, Anna Oris and Academy Award nominee Eric Roberts joined the cast in the fall of 2021 and we shot this film in LA.
Is this movie a slasher film?
No, it’s a thriller and a classic Horror. It will remind you of William Friedkin’s The Exorcist. Actually we have a great connection to this masterpiece because Night of the Caregiver’s star Eileen Dietz played demon Pazuzu in The Exorcist.
Sorry, Alexander, I’m getting off track! Back to Moscow Heat! The film is very reminiscent of Red Heat, was this your homage to a classic Schwarzenegger movie?
Yes, for sure! As you know, I’m a huge fan of Arnold and he played a Russian hero in Red Heat. My story was different but had the same important element: Russians and Americans can be friends and can work together. I’m really proud that I know Arnold personally, he’s still a big inspiration! And he really liked Assault on Rio Bravo trailer – I showed it to him at my Birthday party!
What was it like working with director, Jeff Celentano? And actors Richard Tyson and Michael York?
Jeff made a couple of good independent films including Gunshy with Diane Lane which I watched on HBO and liked. It was interesting to work with him. Michael York helped me a lot during the shooting of Moscow Heat. He’s a real Shakespearean actor and we spent many hours preparing for our scenes together. Richard Tyson was great in Kindergarten Cop with Arnold and in Moscow Heat he played the villain again. But he surprised everyone when he showed up in Moscow with blond hair and looked completely different.
You have wrote, produced, starred and directed movies, what do you prefer?
Producing is my favourite! And acting is on the second place. But it’s between me and you! 🙂
Have you plan to direct another action movie on the future?
Directing Black Rose was a great experience but I was really tired in the end (probably because I also produced and starred in). So I can’t tell you yet when I will direct again but Black Rose 2 will be helmed by me one day for sure!
Besides the ones mentioned, what’s next for you?
I have to completely finish Assault on Rio Bravo, Night of the Caregiver and Savage Attack and make sure that all this films have worldwide distribution. Also, my first book in English will be published this year. It’s called From Zero to Action Hero. Half of the book is my autobiography and the other half is a natural bodybuilding guide.
Thank you so much for your time, Alexander! I am looking forward to the next release, take care and keep pumping!
Thank you very much again, Jeff! Can’t wait to show you my new films! Best wishes from California to you, your family and all the international audience of Action Reloaded!