Eye on CT: Atlantian Films of Avon

Brian Spectre as James Michaels and Criss Moody as Scarlet in Water Rescue scene from Mindscapes. Photo courtesy of Atlantian Films LLC.
Brian Spectre as James Michaels and Criss Moody as Scarlet in Water Rescue scene from Mindscapes. Photo courtesy of Atlantian Films LLC.
Atlantian Films, based in Avon, Connecticut, was formed in 2012 by Farmington native Brian Spectre. Mr. Spectre’s career in film began when he was an
audio engineer in the music industry, where he came into contact with sound engineers from the world of film. He instantly found his passion and began to work on film projects.

Shortly after making the transition into film, Brian’s life took an unexpected turn when he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. The year was 1989. His response was to stand and fight the disease, and it is that determination and grit which have become the core of his new production company, whose battle cry is: “Cancer Patients Who Can.”

Atlantian Films, remarkably, is comprised entirely of cancer survivors and their supporters. Collectively, these brave and talented filmmakers have participated in the production of thirty four films, as producers, production management and support staff.

Brian Spectre as James Michaels using Mindscapes abilty against foe. Photo by Doug Tubach.
Brian Spectre as James Michaels using Mindscapes abilty against foe. Photo by Doug Tubach.
Brian’s ongoing battle with the disease has inspired a screenplay, Mindscapes, one of a trilogy of stories inspired by his personal experiences. While laid up in bed, he spent his time visualizing himself as a strong
knight, a metaphor representing his inner-self, engaged in battle with cancer. Brian has no doubt that the visual battle he waged against the disease aided him in returning to better health. “It made me so determined.
When you look at death twice and are told you won’t make it, this (filmmaking) is not the hardest thing to do.”

Brian Spectre as James Michaels and Criss Moody as Scarlet in Evil Scarecrow chase scene in Mindscapes. Photo by Jerrod Emirzian.
Brian Spectre as James Michaels and Criss Moody as Scarlet in Evil Scarecrow chase scene in Mindscapes. Photo by Jerrod Emirzian.
Mr. Spectre turned down several large offers from major studios for his Mindscapes project, explaining that they wanted story changes that were not true to his vision. But, more importantly, the studios refused to include the staff of Atlantian Films. Admirably, Mr. Spectre remained loyal to his staff. Instead, the project is being produced independently, and has widespread,
grassroots support throughout the state, and through the Farmington Valley Film Commission. Two producers from that organization, Maura Fitzgerald
and Nancy Ancey, have been attached to the project. They anticipate that
Brian Spectre as LT. Hughs in VigilAnte TV pilot after long sand jump. Photo by Laurie Ferguson.
Brian Spectre as LT. Hughs in VigilAnte TV pilot after long sand jump. Photo by Laurie Ferguson.
nearly seventy five percent of the project will be photographed in the Farmington Valley area. The company also has two other projects in the works, VIGILANTE, INC., and THE WOLVEN. The screenplays written by Mr. Spectre have attracted looks from several Hollywood stars who have expressed interest in the projects.
Craig Murphy, Brian Specte,and Steve Emirzian, VigilAnte TV pilot. Photo by Laurie Ferguson.
Craig Murphy, Brian Specte,and Steve Emirzian, VigilAnte TV pilot. Photo by Laurie Ferguson.

In addition to keeping production here in Connecticut, one of the goals of the company is to give back to those who have cancer. Brian and the team want to give some of the proceeds from “Mindscapes” to the American Cancer Society.
Ambitiously, the company has founded three (three!) production studio spaces. One is in Farmington, and is six thousand square feet and is known as the “Dunning Studio”. The others are in New Hartford and in Avon. The company will finish the production of MINDSCAPES, “…by the end of 2014,”says Spectre.

It is easy to root for these guys; they are creative, courageous and bold.

For more information on their slate of productions, or to become involved, they can be reached at AtlantianFilms1@gmail.com, on Facebook at Atlantianfilms, or by phone at 860 404-4029.

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