About the Cast


 

 

Kenneth Cranham (Robert Flaherty)
Celebrated British actor Kenneth Cranham recently completed a run on Broadway and the American tour in the title role of the Inspector in An Inspector Calls, which was honored with four Tony Awards. He originated the role in the West End production in London, where he was nominated for Best Actor in the 1992 Olivier Awards.


Cranham's recent film credits include The Boxer with Daniel Day Lewis and Emily Watson; Under Suspicion with Liam Neeson; Clive Barker's Hellraiser-Hellbound; and Peter Greenawayís Prosperoís Book. His extensive film career dates back to notable performances in Carol Reedís Oliver and Franco Zeffirelliís Brother Sun, Sister Moon.


Cranham's numerous television roles have spanned a generation, with starring roles in over 20 BBC television series. He is probably best known as Harvey Moon from the popular, long-running series Shine On Harvey Moon.


Amanda Root (Kate Markham)
The beguiling Amanda Root recently played the lead role of Anne Elliot in Persuasion, directed by Roger Michell. She also starred in Breaking the Code for the BBC and as "Miss Temple" in Jane Eyre for Franco Zeffirelli.


Prior to those films, Ms. Root was a leading member of the Royal Shakespeare Company for over five years. Her numerous RSC roles included ìJulietî opposite Daniel Day Lewis in Romeo and Juliet, and ìCressidaî with Ralph Fiennes in Troilus and Cressida. Ms. Root also played the lead role of ìNeorzaî in Tell Me Honestly, directed by Kenneth Branaugh.


Her television credits range from the title role of Mary Rose (BBC) and ìAdelaî in Channel Fourís The House of Bernarda Alba to "Polly" in Ladies In Charge (Thames TV) and "Sarah" in David Carsonís Time for Murder (Granada TV).


Marco Perrella (Mickey and Coach)
Marco Perellaís acting experiences includes many featured and co-starring roles in film and television. He portrayed FBI Agent Mercer in JFK; a highway patrolman in A Perfect World with Kevin Costner and Clint Eastwood; and was featured in D.O.A. with Dennis Quaid and Keys to Tulsa. On television, he starred in Seduction with Leslie Ann Warren for CBS, and In Broad Daylight with Brian Dennehy for NBC.
On stage, Perella has written and starred in several productions, including the one-man show Tarot For The New Age, The Big Event and Spirit of the Magii. He starred in Easy Does The Stars, Nashville Road, Three Penny Opera and The Wool Gatherer. Perella is also a singer and musician. He lives in Georgetown, Texas, outside of Austin.


C.K. McFarland (Sayra)
C.K. McFarlandís acting experience encompasses theatre and film. Her films include The Underneath, Blind Fury, Ballad of the Sad CafÈ, Hard Promises and Seduction in Travis County.


On stage, her credits include In the West, Earth Angels, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Cowpatties and Gypsy. McFarland has studied with the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art at the University of London. She was awarded the Stebbins Prize for excellence in performance from Mills College.
She lives in Austin.


Tim Mateer (Walter)
Tim Mateer has acted in film, theater and television productions. He was a featured actor in Blind Fury, Miller & Miller and Lonesome Dove. On stage, his credits include Bus Stop, Our Town and a national tour of A Greater Tuna. He studied acting with Joe Sears.
Mateer lives in Austin.


Jo Carol Pierce (Tresa)
Jo Carol Pierce has acted in film, television and theater. Her film credits include Blood Simple, Best Little Whorehouse in Texas and Never Leave Nevada.


The Austin Chronicle and the Austin Circle of Theaters have honored her with their Best Featured Actress Award (for what film or play?). She was also named Woman of the Year by by the Music City News in (what year?).
Pierce lives in Austin.


John Hawkes (Mac)
John Hawkes spent several years on stage in Austin, Texas, for Big State Productions. He was also a member of the national touring company of Greater Tuna.
His film credits include From Dusk till Dawn and Playing God and the upcoming Home Fries and Rush Hour.
His television credits include guest-starring roles on E. R., Northern Exposure, Wings, Millenium and the Adventures of Brisco County Junior. He also starred in two films for Showtime: The Cool and the Crazy, directed by Ralph Bakshi, and Road Racers, directed by Robert Rodrigues.
Hawkes lives in Los Angeles.


Lou Perryman (Bill)
Lou Perryman has performed extensively in feature films and on stage. His film credits include Last Night at the Alamo, The Whole Shooting Match, Walker, Texas Ranger, Talk Radio, Poltergeist, The Blues Brothers, The Postman Always Rings Twice and Save the Dog.
His theater work includes In The West, Fool for Love and The Night Hank Williams Died.
Perryman lives in Austin.


Janelle Buchanan (Mary Beth)
Janelle Buchanan has acted in many theatre productions in Texas, including Laughing Wild, Steel Magnolias, Top Girls, Night of the Iguana, Bleacher Bums, A Childís Christmas in Wales, House of Blue Leaves, Golden Shadows Old West Museum, Our Town, A Texas Romance and The Council of Love.
She was also a member of Project InterAct, a touring company of professional adult actors performing for children, where she held several roles over five years.
Buchanan lives in Austin.


Amparo Garcia (Carla)
Amparo Garcia is a multi-disciplinary artist who acts, directs, sings and writes plays and music. Her acting career spans film, television and stage, including a role as Cassie in the CBS miniseries Texas Justice. She performed the title role in Marisol, and as a member of the Live Oak Theatre, has appeared in numerous productions there. She also wrote and performed in an award-winning play, Cocks Have Claws and Wings to Fly.
In 1992, she was awarded a NEA/Directorís Fellowship and subsequently worked at the Mark Taper Forum, on Broadway at the Roundabout Theater and at the New York Shakespeare Festival. She was also a James Michner fellow at the Texas Center for Writers at the University of Texas.
As a musician, she staged a one-woman musical piece, Roomful of Men, with her band, and released a recording of songs entitled A Long Way from Alchemy.
Garcia lives in Austin.


About the Filmmakers


Stephen Purvis, Producer, Director and Screenwriter


Purvis entertainment industry experience encompasses the fields of feature film, series television, documentary television and home video. In 1991 he formed Brazos Production Company, which produced DEEP IN THE HEART (OF TEXAS).

His producer and director credits include the documentary series Adventures of the Old West for the Disney Channel and Combat at Sea. His documentary experience includes Medal of Honor (supervising editor) and Ralph Nader: Up Close (editor). Purvis also worked as editor for the reality-based television series American Detective.
Purvis was raised in Marble Falls, Texas, where his first job was as the projectionist at the Uptown Theater. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, he went to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film.

Jesse Sublett, Sreenwriter
Jesse Sublett is a novelist, screenwriter and musician in Austin, Texas. He is also a member of the executive board of The Mystery Writers of America.
Sublett is the author of the Austin-based mystery novels Rock Critic Murders, Tough Baby and Boiled in Concrete, all published by Viking Penguin USA.
He has also written numerous screenplays for film and television, including two series for Arts & Entertainment: Combat at Sea for Brazos Productions and Air Combat for Perpetual Motion Films; and the Disney Channelís documentary series Adventures of the Old West, also for Brazos.
Sublett is also a professional musician. From 1974 through 1987, he was one of the primary movers behind the burgeoning ìnew waveî music scene in Texas, most notably as songwriter and bass player for The Skunks. He still appears on stage occasionally with fellow ex-Austinite Carla Olson of The Textones.
Sublett was born and raised in Johnson City, Texas.

Gary D. Kaufman, Executive Producer
Gary Kaufman is an independent producer of motion picture, television and ancillary entertainment properties, overseeing both the creative and business affairs of the projects with which he is involved.
Prior to producing full-time, Kaufman was a partner and entertainment attorney at Dern & Donaldson in Los Angeles. Besides DEEP IN THE HEART (OF TEXAS), he produced Decoy, starring Peter Weller, Robert Patrick and Charlotte Lewis and featuring visual effects by multiple-Oscar winner Carlo Rambaldi.
He has also produced award-winning music videos, and was a free-lance business consultant and production manager for San Francisco Bay Area stage, film and video productions before moving to Los Angeles.

Mike Tolleson, Executive Producer
Mike Tolleson is an entertainment lawyer who represents motion picture, television and record producers, record companies, recording artists, composers and music publishers. He was the managing director and legal counsel for the Armadillo World Headquarters and co-founded Austin Community Television.
Tolleson has served as President of the Texas Music Association and was appointed by the Governor to the Texas Music Office. He established the Texas Stand at MIDEM in Cannes, France, and is the current Director of the Texas State Bar Entertainment Law Institute.
He also served as executive producer of the independent feature, Scary Movie.

Jim Fritzler, Production Designer
Jim Fritzler was one of the primary forces behind the stage version of In the West. As the artistic director and a founding member of Big State Productions, which produced the play, he wrote and performed several of the monologues. In addition to serving as production designer for DEEP IN THE HEART (OF TEXAS), he makes a cameo appearance in the film.
A director, composer, designer and musician, Fritzler has served as production manager of the Austin Melodrama Theatre; as artistic director of Big State Productions in Austin and Open Channels in NY.; and as assistant manager of Comic Cabaret Unlimited in Hartford, Conn.
A teacher as well, he has been an instructor of theatre and English at Fullerton High School in Nebraska, and taught theatre history, musical theatre and acting at St. Edwardís University in Austin.
He is currently assistant professor of play writing and musical theatre at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas.

Thomas Alcala, cinematographer
Thomas Alcala has worked as a cinematographer on feature films, documentaries and television commercials. His feature credits as a gaffer include Going to Extremes, Young Guns II, Gunsmoke II, Lonesome Dove, True Stories, Trip to Bountiful and Executioners Song. He also served as director of photography for the Disney Channelís documentary series Adventures of the Old West for Brazos Productions.
He has a wide range of popular television commercials to his credit, including work for Braumís Ice Cream, Appletree Grocery Store, Igloo, Popeye Chicken, Venture Department Store and Kids Face.
Born and raised in San Angelo, Texas, Alcala currently lives in Dallas, Texas.

CHRIS HILSABECK, Line Producer/UPM
Chris Hilsabeck has served as line producer on many feature and short films, documentaries and commercials.
His production manager credits include the award-winning shorts Phenomenology and The Rhyming Zoo, and a television pilot Itís a Digital World. In addition, he has been an associate producer for the PBS seriesí Frontline and The American Experience.
Chris Hilsabeck was raised in Austin, Texas, worked in Los Angeles and currently lives in Atlanta.


About the Play

The Original cast of the play.


DEEP IN THE HEART (OF TEXAS) is based on the long-running Texas play, In The West, which was produced by the Big State Theater Company in Austin in 1985, under the direction of Jim Fritzler (who serves as production designer for the film and appears in a cameo role)

.
"It was never meant to be a play," says Fritzler. "It was just an experiment. We drew names out of a hat and you wrote a monologue for the person whose name you pulled."
Development of In The West was also influenced by New York fashion photographer Richard Avedonís photo exhibit at the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth. The collection, In The American West, featured stark portraits of weather-beaten Westerners. The work provoked a strong and mostly negative response from Texans in general and the Big State Players specifically, says Fritzler.


"We thought it was being talked about as if it defined the West," he says. "We said, No, it doesn't ! " The play was a reaction against peoples reaction.


In The West grew to 45 monologues, played for several years in Austin and toured the state. In 1991, In The West was invited into the Texas Festival of the Arts at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.


Always popular with audiences, the play opened and was re-staged several times in theaters all over Texas, including St. Edwardís Universityís Mary Moody Northern Theater, Elisabet Ney Museum, the Hyde Park Theater, the State Theater, the Live Oak Theater, Trinity Studio, Chicago House and the Dougherty Arts Center in Austin; The Hop and The White Elephant Saloon in Fort Worth; and The Plaza Theater in Dallas.


DEEP IN THE HEART (OF TEXAS) features many actors from original cast of the play: Marco Perella (Mickey Caruthers, Coach Caruthers), John Hawkes (Mac), Lou Perryman (Bill), C.K. McFarland (Sayrah), Tim Mateer (Walter), Jo Carol Pierce (Tresa); Amparo Garcia; (Carla) and Janelle Buchanan (Mary Beth).