Written By

Chloe Brown

Chloe's Chronicles

Acclaimed Swedish-American director and actor Harley Wallen caught up with Samera Entertainment’s Chloe Brown of The Chloe Chronicles at the premiere of his latest hit crime thriller the Eternal Code. In this Q&A we talk about everything from his first steps in the industry, where he draws inspiration from, sustaining a character, script and screenwriting, his upcoming projects, and why we love the “Unlikeliest of Heroes.”

Chloe:

Harley, you have done several projects within the crime drama realm, what draws you to those type of stories and characters?

Harley:

Hi Chloe! It’s always awesome to talk to the Samera team and for you to support by coming to the premiere and taking the time!  Great question but not an easy answer. I guess I look for great stories and compelling characters. Whether I write the script or if someone else does. For me, I love to make films. I love them long before the stories become a film, no matter the genre!

Chloe:

You are a successful and talented director and writer but your path to working behind the camera started rather unconventionally, how would you say you learned and figured out your directorial style?

 

Harley:

Another question I love pondering and answering, you’re on fire! I am definitely an “Actor’s Director,” I speak their language so to speak and I believe that’s why I get a fair amount of strong truthful performances in my films. I really believe in my actors! That being said, I have gotten much stronger technically with the help of my team on the other side of production and think you can see that in my latest films.

Chloe:

What has been the most challenging characters of yours to become or sustain during filming?

 

Harley:

Hardest to sustain is probably Cole from the Bennett Song film franchise because it’s a world that is very appealing to me so I found leaving it can be pretty rough. In terms of getting to that mental place though I’d undoubtedly say Zeb from Agramon’s Gate, I didn’t know fully who Zeb was and who he was going to be until the day before we started filming.

Chloe:

How would you describe your scriptwriting process, and does it change from film to film?

 

Harley:

Yes, it does for me. In terms of my scriptwriting approach, I let the story tell me what to do. I’ve written first drafts in a night or two but on the flip side, there have been instances where there’s  a lot of back and forth tinkering to get there.  

 

Chloe:

You started in the arts in Sweden as a martial artist and dancer as a child, what was the transition to acting like? What was the hardest part for you?

 

Harley:

I fell in love with acting at first sight! It was odd, but I had always liked acting and movies, plays, and opera. Basically, the arts in all forms! But when I would get a line here and there in the show Solstollarna in Sweden, I knew the acting bug had bitten! Immediately after that, I started training and improving my craft, I am not an acting snob but truth in performance is so important to me and something I feel we as artists have a fair amount of control over.

Chloe:

Your film the Eternal Code plays with technological advancement in the modern era versus the quest for morality. How important of a message do you think that is today and what inspired you to make this film?

Harley:

The inspiration behind the Eternal Code had come after I read a Facebook post about a doctor who was getting ready to decapitate a paraplegic person’s head to place their brain on a dead person's body. It fired up my Writer’s Brain because we have this societal fascination with “The Holy Grail” and the “Fountain of Youth”,  and vampires/immortality. So, I wanted to post the moral question “Would you kill to live forever?”

Chloe:

You have said for some of your movies you have used a liquid storyboard to visualize scenes for the world of the Eternal Code and why did you make that creative choice?

Harley:

I actually shot listed the Eternal Code but used the “liquid storyboard” in the film we just wrapped Ash and Bone and it was my Director of Photography, Alex Gasperetto‘s idea.  This way we have a look and feel of the imagery and each shot in and of itself told a story! My editor Fred Mossman says, Ash and Bone is going to be a “breakout film!”

 

Chloe:

In The Eternal Code you said you wanted, “The Unluckiest of Heroes” why was that important for you to do? Did it have the effect you wanted?

Harley:

I love unlikely heroes! For me, and hopefully others it gives the reminder that we can all be the heroes of our own stories, even after making some bad choices! I fear it’s too easy for us to forget and let go of our “failures.”  We are still here, it’s still worth it and we CAN do it!

Chloe:

You mentioned, Eternal Code had the shortest festival run of all your films thus far because of its demand. Why do you think that is?

Harley:

I think the time of year is a part of that, right now we are heading into Horror Film Season and then it’s Holiday Film Season. As well as it is a hot topic at hand!

Chloe:
Harley, you co-own/founded Painted Creek Productions with your wife and fellow actor Kaiti Wallen, what would you say is the best part of that, and what was a (creative) challenge you’ve had to overcome or compromise on together?

Harley:

We do pretty well with our relationship on all levels so far. I think the key to that is two big things.  One we try hard to “stay in our lanes” and to listen with the goal of understanding! Secondly, I think the system we have created really helps us be on the same page. We have a “plan-do-review” system that helps us to stay on point. As well as us both sharing a “Project-Team-Self” philosophy that helps egos stay in check for us.

Purchase or Rent

amazon-logo_grey.png
  • Facebook