Sean Weathers is a formidable underground film director, producer, writer, editor and actor living in Brooklyn, New York. Sean's story is a story of life, love, redemption and the power of positive thinking. Sean Weathers is a diehard guerrilla film maker who possesses an encyclopedic knowledge of film. Quentin Tarantino once referred to Sean as the “king of guerrilla film making.” On a personal level, Sean is a descendent of Crispus Attucks, the first man to die during the Boston Massacre which led directly to the American Revolutionary War in 1776. Sean is also renowned psychic who can levitate small objects, cast out demons and communicate with dead people. Sean Weather lives in New York City and is the co-founder of Full Circle Filmworks.
The Early Life of Sean Weathers
Much of the early life of Sean Weathers is shrouded in mystery. He was born in Jonestown, Guyana to a single mother. Sean's mother while pregnant with him, was one of the few survivors of the mass suicide at Jonestown in 1978 at the hands of psychotic cult leader Jim Jones and the People’s Temple. With no money and nowhere to go, She lived in the dangerous jungles of tropical Guyana amongst animals, reptiles and savages. At the age of ten, Sean boarded a raft en route to Miami in search of a better life. After arriving in Miami, he walked over 1,300 miles to New York City and reunited with his family in the brutal East Flatbush section of Brooklyn, New York circa 1990.
As Sean neared his teenage years in the rough and tumble neighborhood of East Flatbush, he began to run with the wrong crowd and became a gangster. He fell into a dangerous crowd of young toughs who smoked pot, robbed bodegas and attacked opposing gang members without provocation. Legend has it that when Sean was only 13 years old when he and a few members of the brutal street gang to which he belonged walked into a fast food restaurant and without warning vandalized and destroyed everything in sight. Allegedly they caused over $20,000 in damage!
Finding Something To Believe In
When Sean entered high school, he began to see that the thug life was not the way for him. No longer interested in being a hooligan, he began to play football and took a strong interest in many other sports. Although Sean still hung out, he no longer affiliated with the shady characters in his neighborhood. Around this time he moved from East Flatbush to the violent neighborhood of “Do or Die,” Bedford-Stuyvesant. After sustaining a back injury in the beginning of his freshman year in high school, Sean struggled to find the purpose of his life. He spent some time searching for something to believe in. The streets were calling him back, but Sean resisted the temptation and decided there were greener pastures elsewhere. Towards the end of his freshman year in high school he decided to pursue acting.
In 1994, a determined Sean began to look for work as a movie extra and would also write a screenplays for “Lord of the Rings,” a "Star Wars" sequel and an Othello adaptation. Around this time, Sean began a short-lived modeling agency. After approximately one year, he abandoned the idea and decided to focus his energy entirely on film making. His earliest efforts were experimental documentaries which were shot in and around his neighborhood. Most of these projects were shot on a Hi8 camcorder and were never marketed to distributors.
After Sean's early experimental films, he began to work with a partner named Ali Johnson. They planned on shooting several films and music videos together. Shortly after they began their partnership, Ali got a job directing a rap music video and asked Sean to work for him as a “Grip.” Sean didn't accept Ali's offer because he felt that they were partners and should not be working with nor for each other. Subsequently, the music video fell through and Ali's now works in a McDonalds in Orlando, Florida.
Gemini In Bed-Stuy
In the summer of 1995, a highly motivated Sean Weathers decided to get back to work on his experimental films. He met up with filmmaker Aswad Issa, and they decided to collaborate on Sean's next effort which was titled "Gemini In Bed-Stuy." This zero-budget film was a comedy revolving around a macho man named Gemini who spent all his time and energy pursuing women in his neighborhood. Approximately 75% of this film was shot, but due to casting-related issues, the film in its entirety was never completed and the master's are now thought to be lost.
Sean The Guerilla Filmmaker
After Sean's first collaboration with Aswad Issa fell apart due to casting-related issues, Sean insisted on continuing his foray into experimental films. He continued casting for another Gemini-like film to no avail. Aswad, who is well known for his persistence, continued to try to convince the stubborn Weathers to consider a more mainstream and orthodox approach to filmmaking. Although orthodox filmmaking was something that Sean wanted to do, it took him sometime to give up his desire to make experimental films. Finally, in the winter of 1995, Sean emailed Aswad a rough outline of the script that would eventually be House of the Damned.
House of the Damned (1996)
Finally, in the winter of 1995, Sean emailed Aswad a rough outline of the script the would eventually be "House of the Damned." At that point, it was just a 20 minute short. Weathers would eventually elongate it to approximately 70 pages. Weathers and Issa cast mostly their friends. The project was filmed over a month in February of 1996, the first week all of the exterior shots were done Boston, MA & the last few weeks all of the interior shots were done at Weathers' house in Brooklyn, NY.
They All Must Die! (1998)
In the fall 1997, one year after his first film "House of the Damned," Weathers set out to complete his 2nd film, "Dirty Deeds," a rape-revenge film. After doing extensive research on this sub-genre one title kept coming up "I Spit on Your Grave," after mentioning it to friends, cast, crew, and local video store owners, and hearing of the long, gritty, realistic, brutal, violent, humiliating, sadistic, and excruciating to watch rape scene. He decided to watch it, upon viewing it, Weathers felt the film did not live up too it's reputation. Prompting him to discard his original script which was plot heavy, recast and start from scratch with a single goal of bringing to the screen the most infamous film ever made. After several months of rewrites and recasting and three emotionally draining weeks of shooting, for better or for worse, by the end of the summer of 1998 his mission was accomplished with the film now known as "They All Must Die!." Too gut-wrenching for film festivals and screening venues, and with no distributor wanting to touch it because of the legal issues surrounding its, "snuff film," allegations and subsequent investigation by the NYPD & FBI, the film had been shelved for over 13 years. Until the fall 2011 against the wishes of the director himself, the film was released by Music Video Distributors (MVD) through a contract loophole, as MVD hopes to capitalize on the controversy surrounding the film.
Lust For Vengeance (2001)
In the fall of 2001 director Sean Weathers and producer Aswad Issa set out to shoot principal photography for their third film together. Weathers wanted to write a script that would be easy to shoot and at the same time meet his personal and artistic requirements. The result was a uniquely structured psychedelic giallo that was both episodic and non-linear while at the same time incorporating the sequence approach developed by Frank Daniel. The film was written, cast, rehearsed, and principal photography was shot, within a two month span. The sequence of scenes with the Jennifer character was held off for over two years, until the right girl for the part was found. Although the character was only intended to have a death scene, the actress that was cast impressed Weathers so much that he extended her part from minor supporting role to lead actress.
In December 2002 Sean decided to focus all of his efforts on post production on the 3 movies he had completed to date, and began to search for an editor. After a few routine editing sessions, the editor and Weathers decided to part ways. A few days later Weathers began a downward spiral into a prolific bout of depression, over-eating, panic and anxiety. He locked himself in his apartment and refused to communicate with family, friends and business associates. Weathers' days were spent force-feeding himself food and looking in the mirror debating whether or not he should let himself live. Partner Aswad, made several attempts to communicate with Weathers over this time period to no avail. He had become a desperado, a vagabond with no will to live. Steeped in depression and suicidal intentions Weathers weighed over 250 pounds during this epic battle he waged with himself. "I didn't feel that I was worthy of life. I wasn't the filmmaker that I wanted to be. I wasn't the human being that I wanted to be," Sean said in an magazine interview in 2005.
Aswad, realizing that it was up to him to complete the editing of Lust For Vengeance and went to Sean's apartment to confront him. He showed up with several people armed with guns and knives out of fear that Sean may have become homicidal. He managed to get a hold of the masters for Lust For Vengeance, but Sean had locked himself in a closet and threatened to take his life if Aswad and his company opened the door. "The situation was tense and scary," Aswad recollected “anything could have happened.” Later that night, Aswad received a call from Weathers asking him if he was going to be home. Aswad informed him that he would be home. A few hours later a haggard, disheveled and worn-down looking Weathers showed up at Aswad's front door. He was morbidly obese, had a beard, and had not cut his hair or taken a shower in 3 months. "I didn't recognize him. He looked like a destitute homeless person," Aswad recalled.
Sean told Aswad that it was the first time he had left his apartment in months. He said, that he was done with the depression and was going to get back to being a filmmaker. He decided that his next project would be “Letters from Emanuelle .” It was around this time that people began to notice that Sean had strange powers. One of Sean’s cousins, was said to be possessed with evil spirits. She was a wanton who lived a life of drugs, debauchery and devlishment. Sean was called on by his relatives to deal with her and he performed an exorcism. While the night roared with thunder and lighting, Sean cast evil spirits out of her oscillating body.
Sean began to gain back his confidence and self-esteem little by little by watching repeated viewings of the Arnold Schartzenegger documentary “Pumping Iron.” He began lifting weights again and slowly lost the weight, he would also revisit his partnership with Aswad. They decided to officially form a company called Full Circle Filmworks. However Sean's recovery would be plagued by more setbacks, his months without working left him penniless and in major debt. Also on October 9, 2003 his life long best-friend Jahvaughn Lambert, would take his own life. Jahvaughn smoked massive amounts of marijuana daily and grew paranoid that people were out to kill him. Jahvaughn talked about suicide before becoming addicted to weed, however combing the suicidal intentions with the panic attacks he got from the drugs pushed him over the edge. The last conversation Weathers had with his best-friend was the night before he took his own life he called Weathers to tell him he wanted to end the friendship. Weathers would have to live with the fact that he wasn't there for his best-friend because he was too busy feeling sorry for himself for months and even more directly Weathers was the person who introduced Jahvaughn to drugs in the first place.
Filming on "Demented," started during the fall of 2003, Sean Weathers shot 6 brutal and graphic rape scenes, 4 of which were shot outside in the DUMBO area of Brooklyn, NY. Causing a community uproar that would lead to a moratorium on shooting in the area that would last for several years, before it was lifted. Due to the mental tole of playing a heartless serial rapist, the lead actor would not only drop off of the film, but quit acting altogether. Although it was intended to be a feature, because the lead actor quit before his dialogue scenes were shot, Weathers would have to shelf the project for 9 years, until he decided to edit the footage he did have into a short film.
The Unfinished Works of Sean Weathers (2004)
Late 2003 into 2004, coming off of his life altering depression and the suicide of his best-friend, Weathers set out to make several softcore fantasy films. In addition to "Gangz vs. Cults," "Escape from Bloodbath Island," and "The Erotic Adventures of Samson & Delilah." Works that he started but never finished, there was also "Apostle of Doom or How I tried to take over the World.," a script that was over 200 pages. Weathers also wrote a script and spent months casting for an unauthorized Emanuelle sequel "Letters from Emanuelle," he also wrote a treatment for a follow up "Emanuelle's Garden." Casting however fell apart and both projects were scrapped. Another notable treatment includes "They Saved Idi Amin's Brain?!," however whichever project he would have attempted to shoot during this time frame would have suffered the same fate. Too much ambition and not enough resources. At the time Weathers was in serious debt, he had no job, no equipment of his own and his life in general was in shambles.
Hookers In Revolt (2006)
In the summer of 2006, Sean Weathers set out to complete his 4th film, "Women on Top." An allegorical satire inspired in part by the book "Animal Farm" & in part by his experiences & interactions with some of the over 300 actresses he would eventually audition for the film. His ambitious endeavor would call for almost 20 principal roles with an equal amount of extras. His decision to shoot the group scenes & the police station scene on the first day, after not shooting in years, almost cost him the film. He would have to overcome a cast revolt, immediately followed by a crew revolt (prompting him to rename the film). The day ended with Weathers firing 3 cast members, nearly being arrested & almost loosing his entire cast & crew, however he would persevere to not only finish the film, but also star in it as well.
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