We’ve asked the filmmakers for the 11th annual Oxford Film Festival the same five questions. Meet Daniel Perea, Co-director of π² and Mile High Pie. π² and Mile High Pie will be screening Friday, Feb. 7 at 4 p.m. and Sunday, Feb. 9 at 2 p.m.
#1: In 140 characters or less, describe your movie and why someone should see it.
For π², Tate Moore ridicules thieves; accidentally fights crime and markets pizza in the process! Who doesn’t wanna see justice via humiliation?
For Mile High Pie, a folksy piece about pie and who doesn’t love pie?
#2: Biggest lesson learned in getting the film made? Best part in getting the film made?
For π², I learned that Tate Moore is my favorite pizza in town, that his Ms. Pac-Man machine is set to free play, and that when push comes to shove, you don’t mess around with pizzaiolos from Ohio. The best two parts of making the film were eating his midwestern style pizza (I’m from Ohio myself, so it’s nice to get a slice of home), and decimating the pathetic meager high scores on the Ms. Pac-Man machine set by college kids that clearly have no idea how to play old-school video games. Modern Warfare is for chumps. I got Pac-Man Fever!
For Mile High Pie, the biggest lesson learned is sometimes the most popular projects are the least expected. The best part about making the film? Eating pie!
#3: Tell us about you. What is your movie making background?
I have worked on dozens of projects in every capacity for several years now, from storyboards to costuming to improv slapstick acting to visual effects. I suspect people tend to associate me most with being a director of narrative films - but I’m actually more like a swiss army knife. You can probably find a lot of people that would agree i’m a real tool.
My co-director, Melanie is a writer who has been covering and celebrating film for a long time now. She recently has found herself in the director’s chair and is also very quickly learning her way around a camera, picking up the science and art of cinematography like a champ. She has a great understanding of the primary importance of film being storytelling. She’s also a natural genius at producing.
#4 What do you want the Oxford Film Festival audience to know about your film that isn’t obvious from its title or description?
Pi Squared isn’t just some generic folksy piece about somebody’s favorite down-home pizzeria. There’s actually a really interesting story going on here. Also, if you are in the habit of acting a damn foo’, it might also be a cautionary tale about the surveillance society we now live in.
And if that wasn’t enough - Tate Moore is an excellent rock frontman and you get to hear and see some of his talent.
For Mile High Pie, It is pretty obvious from the title, it is about pie. But really, what may not be obvious is that it highlights a very female driven business and a remarkable female owner.
#5: What does the future hold in store for your film and for you?
As it happens, I was able to turn my filmmaking hobby into a full-time career as a pizza journalist for PMQ Pizza Magazine. While we actually didn’t make Pi Squared for the magazine, we donated it to them and are using it as a model to create a Pizza Docs program. Hopefully, in the near future, we will be able to give out a number of grants to aspiring filmmakers. They can find us some great human interest stories, and we can help them hone their craft and get some small funding in the process.
To learn more, visit Mile High Pie on Facebook.
For other film fest ties, Daniel also served as editor and cinematographer for West of Elvis and has an acting role in Killer Kudzu.