Another amazing announcement this week, pardners! Doug Drexler, Emmy and Academy Award winning visual effects and makeup artist has joined the Cowboy Creed cast and crew. In a word “Draw!”
My good friend and frequent collaborator Erik “Gooch” Goodrich worked with Doug on Star Trek: Phase II (then New Voyages) and introduced me to him almost a year ago. I first read about Doug’s work when Dick Tracy was about to be released. I’m not sure which magazine it was, but I ate it up. I loved what they were doing to make the comic strip come alive. I was really into special and makeup effects at the time and growing up in a small town (before the internet and DVD’s, kids) I cherished any tidbit of information, be it in a book, magazine, newsletter or on cable, I could find. I never got to work with Doug over my years at Star Trek: Phase II so it was great to finally meet him.
Doug started out in makeup effects under the legendary Dick Smith on The Hunger and Starman. He continued onto several films including Dick Tracy for which he won the Academy Award for Best Makeup. He continued in makeup on Star Trek: The Next Generation, a personal favorite. After that, he switched over to visual effects on Deep Space Nine, several of the Trek films, Voyager and Enterprise. After that is when he was brought on as CG Supervisor on Battlestar Galactica which won two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Special Visual Effects for a Series and a Visual Effects Society Award. They also did some pretty amazing stuff on Caprica.
So, Ben. Where does the “Western” come in? John Carrigan (who plays “Limey”) mentioned Cowboy Creed to Doug and found out how much Doug loves the Western genre. I had seen Gene Roddenberry-written clips on Doug’s blog Drexfiles from Have Gun – Will Travel, but I had not seen this…
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I asked Doug to explain a bit about the history behind his gun play and he writes, “Over thirty years in this business, and finally I get to slap leather on screen! Good Sir Alpi and company came along at the most opportune of times for me, as I just spent the last year nostalgically obsessed with the television western. I grew up in the era of the television Western, and frankly I’d had it with them. Thirty Westerns on TV, and they had to cancel Star Trek. I held a grudge for a long, long time. Then one day I found a picture of me in the first grade. I was wearing a Have Gun – Will Travel bolo tie. I remembered how much I loved Richard Boone as the superhuman “Paladin.” I decided to find out what it was that grabbed me so much as a child. Frankly, I didn’t expect much. By the sixth episode I was hooked again. Six seasons, forty shows each. I came out the other side changed. I delved into other wonderful old shows… Gunsmoke, Cheyenne, Maverick. I was blown away by how fast these guys were on the draw. I hit the Internet and discovered an esoteric subculture, and how these actors learned to be pistoleers. So I took lessons with Hollywood gunslingers. Had gunbelts made by Alfonso’s of Hollywood. Submerged myself in the lore, and when I heard what Ben was up to, I was all in.”
I asked Doug if he might like to be in the film and teach our leads the art of the quick draw. And he said “Count me in!” We’re keeping his role under wraps as a surprise in the film, but I can tell you he’ll have a long arm. We’re really trying to make Cowboy Creed authentic to the cowboy film tradition and Doug will be a big help.
Doug added, “I’m excited about Cowboy Creed, and can’t wait to drawdown on John Carrigan. Thanks Ben! ‘I’m yer huckleberry!'”
Catch Doug at his truly wonderful Drexfiles blog where he shares great stuff from Star Trek behind the scenes and Ships of the Line to all sorts of amazing things. Check it out! http://drexfiles.wordpress.com
There are only 4 days left in our Cowboy Creed Kickstarter online fund raising campaign! To watch our video and learn more about the film visit http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/runicfilms/cowboy-creed-short-film. Our Kickstarter ends Friday, October 28th!