My Big Break
if you're at all interested in celebrity -- and the damaging effects it can have on a person -- I urge you to seek out the documentary 'My Big Break', Tony Zierra's cautionary tale about the Hollywood dream, that follows roommates Wes Bentley (through his meteoric rise to fame with 'American Beauty'), Chad Lindberg 'October Sky','The Fast and the Furious') and Brad Rowe ('Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss',& 'Shelter') as they navigate their often rocky way into the business, while a fourth actor (Gregory Fawcett, or is it Wendell Gregory?) becomes insanely jealous over his roommates' success. When you see it you will understand how Bentley wound up the mess he was for the better part of a decade, and sheds light on the Britneys, Lindsays and Charlies of the world. --Kenneth Walsh, Kenneth in the 212
...controversial and strangely moving documentary about five roommates and their struggle to find and deal with fame in Hollywood.... this revealing and sometimes shocking film takes up-close and personal glimpses into the lives of actors trying to make it big. Some of them do, and are ill-prepared for what awaits them. --Peg Aloi, Boston Examiner
..Tony Zierra's real-life 'Entourage'.'My Big Break' (is) a fascinating, 10-years-in-the-making look at four young actors... and their ups and downs... --James Verniere, The Boston Herald
About the Director
Tony Zierra has been fascinated by the power of storytelling and cinema since he was a child; he was determined to make films no matter the obstacles. When time and money permitted he took film classes at New York University and later at Texas A & M and UCLA. His first documentary, Carving Out Our Name, follows the lives of four actors hoping to find success in Hollywood. The film premiered on the night of September 10, 2001 at the Toronto International Film Festival to much acclaim. Shortly after, Zierra went on the road to capture America's reaction to the attacks of September 11th. The film that emerged, titled USA The Movie, explores the cyclical nature of violence and retaliation. Zierra's recent award-winning documentary, My Big Break, is a cautionary tale about the darker side of celebrity and the consequences of fame that also includes his struggle to make his first film. Zierra is currently working on a documentary project about 9/11 titled Remembrance 2001, featuring rare footage of Ground Zero, that pays tribute to New York and its people as they rebuild and heal after the attacks.
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Top customer reviews
You get to see the highs and lows of making it or not making it in the tough acting Hollywood industry.
You get to see behind the scenes, everything past the hair, make up, designer clothes and flashing cameras. You see tears, anger, depression, drug addiction. Everything!
It's truly fantastic that it was documented and caught on camera. A true honest look at the industry and the affect on the actors lives.
I love this!!!
It not only chronicles the rise of three young actors to sudden breathtaking fame but also the flatline of the fourths attempts at a career. And of course what the film is ultimately presenting is the fascinating tale of the film itself being made and trying to make it within the insular and cannibalistic land of the lotus-eaters.
Brilliantly shot, edited and narrated by director Tony Zierra this is a must see for anyone with the slightest interest in Hollywood behind the scenes. (Or in pursuing a career there.) It is harrowing, funny, and deeply moving. I never expected to get sucked in by this but I must admit by the last entry from Wes Bentley juxtaposed by what the ultimate outcome of the tale turned out to be, well I nearly wept at the loss that was presented. Whether it is Hollywood, Hong Kong or San Francisco and you are a movie star, or an average Joe on the street it all boils down to what life is and what it can do to a dream and ultimately the dreamer.
The score for the film is by a young rising talent out of Liverpool, David Ben Shannon. His contribution to the film is impressive. The score ranges from hip Hollywood sound to a few well places musical homage to films of the past. See if you can spot them. The score soars and supports the film just where and when it needs to. Overall a fine debut by an artist we will be hearing more from in the future.
And I am sure more great things will come from Director Tony Zierra. A strong, passionate filmmaker who deserves at last his "Big Break"! Five stars and Bravo!
Carving Out Our Name, starring Chad Lindberg, Brad Rowe, Greg Fawcett and Wes Bentley, got its big break when it screened at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 10, 2001, but the tragedy that took place the morning after changed everything and Carving Out Our Name went into hiding for good. I had always hoped the film would see the light of day and this year it has. My Big Break is Carving Out our Name's Father. It's older and wiser, but mostly it is fearless.
It's surprisingly easy to relate to these guys as they struggle with success and fame and all that comes with it. It's even easier to relate to the one guy in the house who has to sit back and watch with envy as his three roommates make a name for themselves in Hollywood. At one point the director asks him to do something, anything, and what follows is at once equally hilarious and utterly heartbreaking. Tony Zierra's directorial debut is thoughtful, provoking and painfully real. It's non-fiction at its best.
What I loved most about this film is the fact that the person telling the story is as much a part of it as the rest. The character with the camera in American Beauty come to life.