Our appetite for war movies can never be satisfied. The good news is that they don’t seem to be abating, more are on the horizon and one that has caught our eye is War Pigs, due for release later this year. We caught up with producer/co-writer Steven Luke, who will star alongside Dolph Lundgren and Mickey Rourke (hey, another Expendables get together) to discuss the movie.
ManlyMovie: How did War Pigs come about?
Steven Luke: War Pigs as a feature film came about because of a short film I had made called Wunderland. Sunderland played at a lot of great national and international festivals winning several awards. The story follows a officer Lt. Cappa as he tries to survive a a firefight during the Battle of the Bulge in WWII. I used this short film as a pitch for a feature film. It received a nice reception from a few production companies, but it was my producing partner Andre Relis and his company Vantage Media that really saw all the potential in the short film and asked me to write a feature film set during WWII. This script became War Pigs. It then was pre-sold at the Cannes International Film Market in France.
MM: What genre should we expect to fall under, aside from being WW2?
SL: This film is a Action Adventure film to the core. It has a lot of great characters much like Indiana Jones or Guardians of The Galaxy.
MM: How big are Dolph Lundgren and Mickey Rourke’s roles?
SL: Both have very important roles in the movie. Mickey Rourke plays Colonel AJ Redding who is the founder and overall commander of the War Pigs squad. He then tasks tasks French Foreign Legionnaire Captain Petter Picault played by Dolph Ludgren to help lead the War Pigs with disgraced Lt. Cappa played by Luke Goss. I think people will be very impressed with the amount of screen time all three of my leads have. Like any good movie, each is a very fun and unique character.
MM: Looking at some photos from the set, there seems to be some impressive authentic WW2 gear in there – such as the German Panzer IV. Was extra effort put in for that?
SL: YES! I was a history major in college and I run a a historic reproduction company called Man The Line, so extra effort was made to make sure that everything in the movie was WWII period correct. I had several WWII period advisors on set to make sure we kept everything correct. The German Tanks and Halftracks came from my good friends over at Panzerfabrik, who own and operation them for different shows and events. It is very rare to have German armor in a movie, as in the United States, there is only a handful of people who own such things.
MM: Any word on runtime, release date and might we see a theatrical run?
SL: Runtime of War Pigs, will run about 100 minutes. Our distributor Cinedigm plans a Summer release with a limited theatrical run in selective theaters. We are hoping to be able to have a Big World Premiere at the GI Film Festival that takes place in Washington D.C. in June. MM:
WW2 is possibly the most covered movie genre outside the western. As co-wrotier did you find it difficult writing another WW2 movie and making sure it stands out from the rest?
SL: WWII is a fun Genre because it really is a Good Vs. Evil story and it is fun to have such black and white topics to write about. Plus everyone had a family member that served during WWII, so it has a global audience. I love writing in the WWII era, and did not have a problem trying to flesh out a story in that genre. However, I did want it to be unique from other WWII movies I have seen. I really tried to create characters from real life WWII vets I have known throughout my life. I also tried to keep the story more about the men serving together and how they interact with each other. These guys were required to live 24/7 together and they really would form a bond like brothers. I really wanted to bring those little moments that brothers have to light for an audience too see. I also believe that in war, soldiers that are faced with death have a different perspective on life. I find that the guys tend to make things seem a lot more funny then they are. I really tried to capture that in the movie.
MM: Has this project given you a taste for the action/thriller/war genre and do you think you’ll return to it?
SL: I love action and war movies. Especially the fun ones, and I know it will always be my first love in writing and producing. However, I do think that every film maker has different types of stories to tell so it would be nice to get back into an Art film…eventually. But, there has already been talk of a sequel to War Pigs…
MM: Lastly, what is War Pigs’ best selling point and why should we war nerds see it day one?
SL: War Pigs, is a fun action movie full of Luke Goss and Dolph Ludgren killin’ Nazis… and who doesn’t want to see Luke and Dolph killn’ Nazis? So be sure to keep you eyes peeled this summer for the release of War Pigs!