I just like pointing at the screen every five minutes, saying "Yeah, I've been there."
The DVD of My Girlfriend's Boyfriend just happens to be one of our Best of the Beehive picks coming out in our July issue. Yes, it's required of us to live three months ahead of ourselves.
We recently had director Daryn Tufts answer some of our questions about the film. Hint: He also played Eldon in The Singles Ward and The Singles 2nd Ward.
What was the reaction to the film at this year's LDS Film Festival?
Amazing. It would be hard to imagine a more positive response. Iâ€™m proud to have shot the entire film locally and our goal was always to represent Salt Lake City as a beautiful, unique, and vibrant city. For me, that made watching the movie with local audiences even more rewarding. The audience at the LDS Film Festival was one of the absolute best. That's an audience that really values and supports local film, and that night I felt really valued and supported.
Overall, what do you hope people took away from this film?
I hope this movie surprises people, in the best possible way. I wanted to present a film that began as a typical romantic comedy, but then did something different with the genre â€“ something new and unexpected. The idea was to do something Iâ€™d never seen done in a love story â€“ and I didn't want the audience to see it coming.
How did Alyssa end up in the film and what was your response to her being cast?
Before the film, we didnâ€™t have any connection to Alyssa. We just knew she would be amazing in this role so we went out on a limb and approached her agent with the script. It wasnâ€™t much more than a cold call. Fortunately, she really responded to the screenplay and before I knew it, my producer and I went to LA to meet with her. Her relationship with the movie was great from the beginning. She really â€œgotâ€ the screenplay and was tremendously supportiveâ€”really wanted to help make it into the best movie it could be. I couldnâ€™t have been more excited to have her on board. From there, we all dug in and got to work.
Anything in the film you'd change in hindsight?
Nothing major. Overall, Iâ€™m really happy with how the movie came together and I couldnâ€™t have hoped for a better cast. There are always small things you want to tinker with. But then there are also so many things about the finished movie I would never changeâ€”even a couple of moments that give me chills every single time I watch it.
This is the first feature film you directed, right? What's it like for you to go from in front of the camera to behind the scenes?
Being in front of the camera definitely helped me learn from other directors. I tried to identify the techniques in other directors I thought produced the best results and build upon that. Iâ€™ve also been fortunate enough to have been on many sets for projects Iâ€™ve written, and that gave me a lot of practical experience. And before the movie, I directed commercials. Obviously, a big part of directing is having a strong vision and trusting that, following your instincts. But itâ€™s critical to have the best people involved with you, and to listen to them, know how to effectively collaborate. If youâ€™re fortunate enough to have great actors and production people, youâ€™ll quickly learn they can add to the movie in ways you never would have without them.
What projects are you working on now or have on the back burner?
Iâ€™m about to go into production on a horror movie. As with â€œMy Girlfriendâ€™s Boyfriend,â€ I wrote the script, Iâ€™ll direct, and the entire movie will be shot locally. Other than that, the movie bears no resemblance to â€œMy Girlfriendâ€™s Boyfriend.â€ I hope itâ€™ll be original, scary, fun and as well received as our little love story.
My Girlfriend's Boyfriend was filmed back in July, 2009, had a brief stint in the theaters and became available on NetFlix and Amazon on March 1, 2011. Wal-Mart will have the DVD available for purchase at in June, pre-order right now. Click here for more info.