Santa Cruz Good Times

Tuesday
Sep 30th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

The Hunt For Bill Murray

murray2Director and UCSC alumnus Christopher Guerrero seeks out the elusive Bill Murray to star in thesis film

Christopher Guerrero, a UC Santa Cruz alumnus and current graduate student of the USC School of Cinematic Arts, has an ambitious vision for his thesis film: to cast one of the most famous men in Hollywood, Bill Murray, in a lead role. It may sound like a pipe dream, but Guerrero and his crew are beyond determined to convince the iconic actor—by any means possible—to join them in Santa Cruz, where they intend to start filming in May of this year. In an effort to gain Murray’s attention, the group of students have established Bill Murray Appreciation Day (BMAD), set to take place on Saturday, Feb. 2, also known as Groundhog Day (a reference to Murray’s 1993 comedy of the same name). The inaugural event will be held on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles, where fans dressed up as Bill Murray in his various film roles will embark on a BMAD Bar Crawl. Guerrero hopes that the celebration will extend beyond Los Angeles, however, and that fans will honor the day around the world each year. In preparation for this weekend’s event, we caught up with Guerrero to discuss his film, the new holiday, and the progress of his quest.

Good Times: Can you tell us about the film?

Christopher Guerrero: The film is a short, 15-minute comedy about Mike, a punk rock student and I.T. specialist at a university. He finds himself on a mission to reclaim the Chancellor's laptop from a group of anarchists bent on stopping "The Military Industrial Complex." His only help is a rag tag group of weirdos: Susan, his gothic-gamer roommate, Ryan, an overweight hipster ecstasy dealer, and Vanessa, a tough-as-nails roller derby girl.

What convinced you that Bill Murray was the best choice for the role and why do you idolize him?

My producer William Goldstein said it best, “He can play caricatures without being histrionic—in a way that feels authentic and real.” I idolize Mr. Murray because he’s one of those actors that has transcended his own stereotype.

murray1

Why do you think Bill Murray should agree to this role? What’s in it for him?

By examining his resume, you get the idea that he's an actor that seeks out roles that would surprise the audience. Playing the Chancellor of a university, Murray will not only personify, in iconic fashion, the very unique culture of the city and school, but he would humanize a world that's often misconstrued and stereotyped outside Santa Cruz.

How do you plan on celebrating Bill Murray Appreciation Day? Will this become an annual event?

One thing is for sure, we are going to be making Bill Murray Appreciation Day an annual event. The purpose of the holiday is to celebrate Mr. Murray’s transcendental career and to hopefully gain the actor's attention in order to cast him as an important character in the film. The holiday will be held on Feb. 2, Groundhog Day, in homage to the classic Bill Murray film.

How can people outside of Los Angeles who want to celebrate join in on the fun?

Anyone can assemble a group of friends and participate. Please take photos or videos and post it to the Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/BillMurrayAppreciationDay). Throw a party. Have a parade … as long as you’re celebrating Bill Murray, you can be part of Bill Murray Appreciation Day.

When do you plan on shooting the film in Santa Cruz? What locations will you visit and why?

We plan on shooting this film in late spring, we’ve been thinking around May, so long as all of the pieces fall into place. I want to use as many iconic locations as possible to get the look and feel of Santa Cruz. In my head, I have this vision of driving down Walnut Street toward Downtown, or the pier/Boardwalk, Natural Bridges, the harbor.

How did you get started in film?

Well, I actually started in radio when I was 10 years old on an NPR show run by kids. The show was run out of my sixth grade classroom in my hometown and it really gave me a love of telling and creating stories. So I went to UCSC and studied film, after worked as a staff member at UCSC for a while, and currently I’m an MFA film production grad at USC in Los Angeles.

What do you want your viewers to take away from this film?

When you find a place you fit in, you have to fight for it. The main character, Mike, has people trying to take Santa Cruz away from him. I want viewers to see no matter where you identify as being your home, it’s worth fighting for.


For more information, or to participate in Bill Murray Appreciation Day on Feb. 2, visit http://billmurrayappreciationday.com/ or https://www.facebook.com/BillMurrayAppreciationDay.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Reflecting Glass

Composer Philip Glass’ first trip to Big Sur was by motorcycle; little did he know that he’d establish a music festival there six decades later.

 

Rosh Hashanah

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, occurs this year during Libra, the sign of creating right relations with all aspects life and with earth’s kingdoms. We contemplate (the Libra meditation) forgiveness, which means, “to give for another.” Forgiveness is not pardon. It’s a sacrifice (fire in the heart, giving from the heart). Forgiveness is giving up for the good of the other. This is the law of evolution (the path of return).

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of September 26

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Wurst Case Scenario

Venus Spirits releases agave spirit, Renee Shepherd on planting garlic, Sausagefest 2014, and wine harvest in full swing

 

Do you think you are addicted to technology?

Santa Cruz  |  Unemployed

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Apricot Wine for Dessert

Thomas Kruse Winery, a participant in the new Santa Clara Wine Trail, has been around for a long time—since 1971, to be exact. When our little group arrived to try some wine at the Kruses’ low-key tasting room, Thomas Kruse and his wife Karen were there to greet us. Theirs is a small operation, and they’re proud to offer quality wine at affordable prices. “Because we are small and low-tech, it’s easy to relate to the whole winemaking process,” says Karen—and the Kruses take pride in making wine “just like it has been made for centuries.”