The Making of “White Lightning”

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…with filmmaker Mark McGarry

White Lightning is a documentary looking into the life of a 29 year old albino DJ that plays CD’s at a bowling alley on Saturday nights. His real name is Greg Benhardt and his DJ name is “White Lightning”. He quit his job at the local bread factory to focus all of his energy into his Saturday night performances.

Yo Beat: What was your creative vision for making this film?

Mark: I don’t know …maybe I should take some acid and find one…..whoa shit

Where did you come up with the idea for an albino DJ that spins in a bowling alley?

I was bowling with some friends one night in Vermont and there was a DJ that was playing top 40 hits all night and people were so into him. He was acting like he was mixing records and stuff but he was just hitting the “play” button on a CD player. Every person there felt his energy….he was intense.

What is it like making your first feature film? Any problems you’ve had?

It has been fun. Problems….no money and the movie star is always snowboarding so it is hard to plan our shooting. I don’t think I am paying him enough….I might give him a raise or a bag of chips. Brian Barb calls himself a “chipaholic” at parties.

What is your favorite scene in the movie?

Definitely the scene that you helped me with….the only scene in the movie with crazy special effects. It is a reenactment of a dream WL had…he is naked on the floor squirming around with rain pouring down on him. It was quite costly but we pulled it off.

How are the acting talents of Brian Barb?

Brian Barb is an extremely talented actor. I feel good knowing that this movie is going to boost his career. I know he really wants to work with Bill Bellemy on a Boyz in the Hood kind of flick…so this will give him a good start.

How is Mike Parziale involved?

Mike has his acting debut in the movie…he plays one of Greg’s co-workers at the Franz bread factory. He is wearing a hair net and smoking a cigarette.

Who would you say is the best member of your crew?

You… since you have been my only crew member, but a great one. I could have never pulled off that special effects scene without you. Something could have definitely blown up and killed someone.

What has been your biggest challenge in making the movie?

Having no money, reserving equipment, having a movie star that is a snowboarder, fighting off all the actors that want to be in it, and filming the whole thing with one arm.

What is something you know indie movie nerds will notice and decide they don’t like the movie because of?

Indie movie nerds….they will notice that there are obvious filming no no’s in the movie like an umbrella light reflecting in Brian’s glasses or obvious shadows placed perfectly centered on Brian’s face…they will either like this or not because my role in the movie is that I am a filmmaker that has failed to make any good movies because I don’t know what I am doing.

When will it be completed?

Hopefully….by the end of April

How are you going to bring it to the people?

Hi mom.