In 2009, at the age of 52 and suffering from terrible chronic back pain, Victor D’Altorio decided to end his life. Victor was a proud homosexual, a lover of life, honest, and outrageous. As an acting teacher of the Meisner technique for 20 years, he was committed to living in the moment, and accepting all that that had to offer, however painful it may be. But after fighting bone marrow cancer into remission he found himself with debilitating degenerative disc disorder in his neck and back, and he could not deny the pain that he was in or the dim prospects of relief. His personal commitment to truth and honesty made him strongly despise the idea of suicide in the traditional sense. He simply could not cause that pain to the ones he loved. So in a typical Victor way he decided to tell everyone (via his blog) that he was going to kill himself. This is the starting point for our story. Three months after Victor’s blog announcement, Brendan (the filmmaker) found out about his story and convinced him to make a film exploring his experience and decision. Over the next five months together we see Vic soaking in the tub in pain, making sex jokes, yelling at the cameraman, crying over his deceased partner, teaching eager new students, wavering on the big choice, and bonding with Brendan. During this time, Brendan’s mission changes. He stops being simply the filmmaker asking why and becomes a close friend trying to change Victor’s mind. Brendan puts together an acting class for Victor to teach to remind him of the life he once loved living, he teams with other students to produce the play that Victor had written, he does all he can to convince his new friend and mentor to stick around.
Here is our short 60-second teaser trailer
Brendan Brandt (Director/Producer), is a Los Angeles based actor who has been working professionally for the last ten years in theater, film and television. He’s appeared in prime-time dramas for CBS, sitcoms for Comedy Central, ABC and CMT, and films that have been distributed by Netflix, Amazon, and Directv. In addition, he has been in over twenty commercials as a principal actor. His book "Waiting Tables, Dodging Bullets: An Actor's Guide to Surviving Los Angeles" was published in 2010. Although he's worked in the industry for ten years, this marks his directorial debut.
Arielle Amsalem is an Emmy Award winning editor of feature length documentary films. After graduating from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts film program, where she apprenticed under the editor Sam Pollard, Arielle started her career working on Spike Lee's award winning documentary "When the Levees Broke" (2006), a film about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. She has since been the editor of many feature- length documentaries including the Edward Norton produced HBO documentary "By the People: The Election of Barack Obama" (2009) for which she won the Primetime Emmy for Picture Editing for Nonfiction Programming. She worked as a Producer on Jennifer Fox’s 6-part documentary series “Flying: Confessions of a Free Woman”, which premiered at Sundance and aired on the Sundance channel. Additionally, she has consulted on the production and distribution of many of the documentaries which she has edited.
Scott Hampton is a professional composer with over twenty years experience creating music. He is an accomplished instrumentalist, regularly recording on trumpet and guitar as well as an ever-expanding collection of diverse instruments from all over the world. His music has been licensed on hundreds of television shows on networks including NBC, ABC, The Food Network, Bravo, HGTV, Travel Channel, MTV, DIY Network and TV Land. His work reflects a long-time fascination with cinema and a deep appreciation for film culture and the many ways in which meaning is created in film, where music is a vital ingredient that functions to support the overall vision of the film. His film scores are crafted to support the mood, aesthetic and setting of the visual medium.
Steve Fife reviews Victor's Last Class for better-lemons.com
Victor's Last Class was honored at the SoCal Festival
Check out our film in SoCal this March!
Dir. Brendan Brandt will fly out to Jefferson College in March 2017 to speak about the film and screen it for the students. Hopefully the first of many screenings and discussions at colleges across the country.
Premiering at the Kansas International Film Festival 11/6! Get tickets in advance! Will sell out!
We will screen our film in Kansas City between November 4th-10th. Hope to see you there!
VLC was broadcast on Israeli National Television May 8th, marking the World Premiere. Thanks to Channel 8 in Israel for the support!
With pre-production starting in mid 2009, this was a long process.
Victor's Last Class has signed with London based Sideways Film for international sales representation.
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Sideways Films represents Victor's Last Class internationally.
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Check out The Kansas International Film Festival, where we had our US Premiere in November.
Check out the Pasadena Festival, where we will have our California Premiere in March!
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We hope to help people everywhere think about and discuss matters of mortality with those around them. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to support our mission.