If you live in the New York/New Jersey area, chances are, you have already seen actor Bill Sorice and just don’t know it. That’s because he appeared in a New York Lottery commercial as “Lucky Two Fingers” (pictured in the above montage). Aside from commercials, though, Sorice has appeared in films and episodes of various television shows, but his most recent film-work is a dark comedy titled Matt’s Chance, which appears to be very intense and quirky, and stars Edward Furlong of American History X, as well as screen legends Margot Kidder and Lee Majors. This film will hopefully mark a new career era for Sorice, who has one of the lead roles. With his beard and manner taken into account, he reminds me of a young F. Murray Abraham, and the “gangster” style character he is playing as might event hit towards Abraham’s in Scarface. I had a chance to discuss this upcoming film with Bill, as well as his career, in our interview below:
GC: Tell us a little bit about Matt’s Chance as well as your role in it.
Matt’s Chance is a multiple award-winning film written and directed by Nicholas Gyeney and co-written by comedian Edi Zanidache. It’s a story about this guy, Matt (Edward Furlong), a down-on-his-luck loser who on his birthday night discovers his fiancée, Jessica, in bed with another man. As Matt learns the true depth of Jessica’s betrayal, he begins a downward spiral revenge quest that pits him face-to-face with a wide array of characters, including an Eastern European mobster, ‘Gabor’, played by myself, an eccentric pawn shop owner (Gary Busey), an aging stripper (Margot Kidder), and a barber with an agenda (Lee Majors). The role of Gabor was a dream role for a character actor like me. Although, he is a ‘Mobster’, he’s not a stereotypical one; he has some secrets, so I tried to walk a very fine line with him.
BS: What was it like getting a chance to work with the likes of Edward Furlong, Margot Kidder, Gary Busey, and Lee Majors?
It was a tight 15 day shoot and I worked 9 (with overtime, of course). Since Eddie plays the title role and I’m the second lead, we spent a lot of time together on and off set. It was great to get to know him; he’s a really cool, mellow, and talented guy. Apparently, he only received the script less than a week before shooting. He had a bunch of monologues without a lot of time to prepare. I was very impressed by his talent and how he was able to pull it all off in such a short period of time. Gary Busey is… a character (laughs). He let his opinions be known to the director and crew about his scenes, however, I think he was just ultimately concerned that the end product was going to be the best it could be. I really enjoyed working with him. Busey is very intense and I like being in scenes with strong actors. He treated me with respect and was very encouraging. Margot Kidder is still such a great actress – so natural. I love her scenes. I learned more about the craft of acting watching her work. Lee Majors was a childhood hero, so it was surreal meeting him. He actually approached me and introduced himself. A true gentleman; One of the nicest guys I’ve ever meet!
GC: Why should people go out and see Matt’s Chance, and will it be playing nationwide?
BS: Matt’s Chance will have its NY Premiere at the New York International Film Festival on Friday, June 14th at 6pm. SVA Theatre at 333 West 23rd Street. For tickets click here. It has already played in I think another dozen film festivals around the country and won a bunch of awards. The last I heard, it will have a limited theatrical release in selected cities late Oct. 2013. Nothing is for everybody. If you take yourself too seriously and/or you are easily offended, Matt’s Chance might not be for you. However, if you like dark comedies/ dramaties that take risks and are not your typical mainstream crap, go see this film. The interesting cast of characters is worth the price of admission. The film is 95 minutes, moves along nicely and sure to make you laugh.
GC: You have also acted in commercials. What is the major difference, running time aside, between shooting a commercial and a feature film?
BS: ‘The Production’ and ‘The Set’ environments themselves are the same in Commercials and Films, so in that sense they feel the same. But for me my perspective as an actor is different. In a Commercial you are trying to sell a product. In a Film you are trying to sell a story and a believable character in that story.
GC: You appeared in several episodes in the Law & Order franchise. What was it like being involved with such a legendary series?
BS: Years back, I had a couple small bits with principle actors on the show and photo inserts as a perp, but I’m still waiting for them to give me my big break (laughs).
I would like to thank Bill for taking the time to conduct this interview. I also wanted to share with you a message from the director: “Just finalized our distribution contract for “Matt’s Chance.” Our little dark dramedy will be hitting theaters in a limited release beginning in Seattle, Los Angeles, and New York tentatively in late October of this year! Immediately following that, the film will be released on VOD platforms including iTunes, Netflix, Amazon Instant, Hulu, Cable On Demand, etc., as well as on Blu-Ray and Dvd both online and in retail stores nationwide.”