To director Ti West and actor James Ransone, no amount of money can overshadow integrity. HBO veteran Ransone ("The Wire", "Treme") is adamant he will "back an artist over the money any day." And when triple threat writer-director-editor West is asked which of those three stages of production he would give up if he had unlimited funds, he says he "won't do it! ...That's the price of integrity." In fact, it was during a conversation about integrity during the pair's first meeting that sparked both a successful working relationship, and a friendship. "I met him and then he explained to me how he was very unhappy with a movie he did, so he took his name off of it, and I was like 'alright I want to work with this person,'" Ransone told host Ophira Eisenberg. The rest is history.
Ti West has made his mark for absolutely chilling titles like The House of the Devil and The Innkeepers, to name a few. He's so good at creating horror films, in fact, that he rarely gets scared anymore. "If a movie scares me, that means it's doing something that I can't quite figure out," he shared with host Ophira Eisenberg. He likened the experience to a magician watching another magician's magic trick: if one stumps the other, it's a "huh" moment. While West is "always looking for that 'huh,'" it doesn't happen as often as he'd like.
West's newest project In The Valley of Violence -- a Western in which he wrote a part specifically for Ransone--is an abrupt genre departure for the filmmaker. West admits to Eisenberg that he decided to switch gears after finishing a confrontational, tragic, "bummer" of a horror movie heavily set in realism. "When that was done, I didn't want to do anything having to do with realism," he shared with Eisenberg, "I wanted to do traditional, cinematic, and that to me was a Western."
In the spirit of the Western, our VIPs face off in an Ask Me Another showdown! Ophira and Jonathan give clues to an answer with the word "West" in it — first to buzz in with the correct answer wins!
On the job they would have if they lived in the Wild West
Ransone: A madam!
West: A weird hermit person.
James Ransone on the moment he realized acting was his full-time job
I got cast in Generation Kill and I had to go to Africa and I was going to live there for about a year... And then I got to set and they handed me a call sheet and I was #2 on it, and I was like 'someone made a mistake...this is too much responsibility for me.'
Ti West on discovering there was more than one Indiana Jones film
I started to think, did my parents keep this from me or did they not know? Don't know which one is worse. Anyway, later that day I saw it. It was great--monkey brains, the whole thing.