Brian Ronalds is an American actor turned writer/producer/director and is the other half of “The Ronalds Brothers” a creative duo with impressive resumes. Brian’s recent credits include the horror-comedy, Netherbeast Incorporated, directed by his brother, Dean. The film stars Darrell Hammond, Judd Nelson, Dave Foley, Robert Wagner and Jason Mewes.
Brian has co-produced Dirty Little Trick starring Dean Cain and Michael Madsen, as well as the feature, Ashley, also directed by Dean Ronalds. That film featured America’s Next Top Model winner, Nicole Fox, Two and a Half Men’s Jennifer Taylor, Tom Malloy, and Michael Madsen.
A graduate of Columbine High School, the site of the infamous 1999 mass shootings, Brian has recently made his feature film directorial debut with the powerful, compelling project, THE MASS SHOOTING MONOLOGUES. The film is both poignant and important, dealing with mass murder at a high school that was motivated by bullying. The film stars Kee Chan (Revenge of the Sith), Tom Malloy (The Alphabet Killer/Love N’ Dancing), Brennan Murray (You’re the Worst/Video Game High School) and introduces Brian’s son, Leif Ronalds.
Hollywood Revealed: Hi, Brian. Where did the idea for this movie come from?
Brian: It’s a strange dichotomy that went into this film. Growing up in Littleton, Colorado, and graduating from the infamous Columbine High School, I myself wasn’t a stranger to being bullied. With this film I wanted to take a deeper dive into why mass shooting murderers feel entitled to take matters into their own hands. Like so many, I am mortified that the horrible road they find themselves going down is one of so much death and destruction and heartache.
Hollywood Revealed: Where did you film The Mass Shooting Monologues, and what was your shooting schedule?
Brian: We shot in the small town of Gilbert, Arizona. Being on hiatus, we shot the film over a 6 month period. Our cast and crew were very flexible with their own schedule and went out of their way to accommodate our scheduling needs. On a handful of production days we flew actors in from Los Angeles and back out the same day .
Hollywood Revealed: What was your best and worst day during production?
Brian: My best day was day 1, when we shot the character the audience later finds out is the mass shooter played by my son Leif Ronalds. Leif auditioned for the role and he was able to convince me, his father, that he could pull off this role and carry the movie. I had him train and rehearse with me for three months prior to our first day of production. My worst day is when I had to let an actor go due to their lack of preparation. It was a shocker, it was uncomfortable and a very sad day for all concerned.
Hollywood Revealed: Were you able to recast that role?
Brian: Recasting is never fun when you have your heart set on a certain individual talent, but at the end of the day, I’ve always felt what’s meant to be is meant to be and Vai Patri was the diamond we would not have had found had we not recast.
Hollywood Revealed: You’ve written and produced a number of films. What made you feel that you were ready to direct a feature, and why start with this particular story?
Brian: My directing experience on the web series, Here and Now, with Judd Nelson, Traci Lords, and Alexis Arequette lent well with articulating a vision and tone. Launching my directorial feature debut with The Mass Shooting Monologues as a pseudo fictional tale was a personal endeavor that I felt ready to dive into from personal experiences.
Hollywood Revealed: How did you put your crew together, and did you get any directing tips from your brother, Dean?
Brian: I spent two years writing the film with actress/writer/producer Michelle Palermo. We formed a great team with a like-minded crew that related to the story we’re telling, both emotionally and historically. As far as little brother Dean, he’s taught me to keep on keeping on no matter how hard the story you may be telling impacts yourself and others. We are a very supportive family and offer each other nothing but truth and love.
Hollywood Revealed: Do you have a scheduled release date for the film?
Brian: We will be releasing the film early Fall of 2020
Hollywood Revealed: What else do you have in the works?
Brian: Michelle Palermo and I have a revenge/thriller, The Will that we wrote together currently in development, and our upcoming film will be a comedy/horror project, Unwelcome, to be released Winter 2022.
Hollywood Revealed: Thanks for talking with us and for letting us take a look at the trailer which our readers can watch HERE.
Brian: My pleasure.