Unsullied – Interview with Writer/Director Simeon Rice

After a stellar collegiate career Simeon Rice became one of only 30 NFL players, since 1982, to reach the 100 career sack club.  The Super Bowl winner and numerous All-Pro is now tackling the film world!  Unsullied marks the feature film directorial debut for Rice.  Click through for my interview with the former Tampa Bay Buccaneer and Arizona Cardinal great.

As a diehard Lawrence Taylor fan, I've always loved defensive players over offensive stars.  In the early 90's the University of Illinois contained a trio of incredible linebackers.  Dana Howard would leave for the NFL first, but Kevin Hardy and Simeon Rice would make history as they went # 2 (Jacksonville) and # 3 (Arizona Cardinals) respectively in the 1996 NFL Draft.  But only Simeon Rice would enter into the elusive 100 sack club, win a Super Bowl and retire one of the most feared pass rushers in the modern era of NFL football.  When talking to Simeon though his passion for film seems even stronger than for football.  I did of course bring up his playing days, but he was really humble and just let me know that he, "played at a high level." Simeon was an elite player who's life is not only defined simply by his football career.  And this next chapter of life has his full attention and focus. 

The man behind the camera; Super Bowl Champion and All-Pro Simeon Rice makes his directorial debut with #Unsullied.

"When car trouble strands track star Reagan Farrow (Murray Gray) in the Florida boondocks, she accepts an offer of help from a pair of charming strangers (Rusty Joiner and James Gaudioso) only to find herself trapped in a brutal backwoods nightmare. After Reagan awakens in an isolated dark room, she manages to escape and take refuge in the forest. Relentlessly pursued by the savage sociopaths who kidnapped her, Reagan will need all of her inner strength and resourcefulness in order to survive in Unsullied, a gripping thriller that marks the feature-film directing debut of NFL superstar Simeon Rice."

Unsullied Poster

In our conversation we tackled many aspects of the horror thriller.  We talked about his film influences for the movie, like the Coen Brothers' No Country For Old Men.  Simeon even talked about his toughest day on set.  But we mainly talked about his lovely lead actress, and TEXAN, Murray Gray!

Murray Gray

The young actress is not only beautiful but utterly captivating in the lead role of Reagan Farrow.  It was impressive the way in which Cinematographer Scott Winig was able to highlight the Tampa Back woods and Murray's natural beauty at the same time.  The shot selection really was spot on for numerous sequences in the backwoods. 

Unsullied screenshot-24

But the way in which the young actress carries the entire film is quite remarkable.  The plot itself is pretty simple, but there are nice flashback moments to add another fun layer to the story. 

Unsullied screenshot-4

Overall the cinematography and sound really stand out in the film along with the young actors really having fun in their roles.  It's nicely edited by Andrew Cohen A.C.E. in that the structure, including the flashbacks have a horrifying closure.

Unsullied screenshot-18

But Simeon and I also discussed how No Country For Old Men revolved around a diabolical villain.  The film has two bad characters in Mason Hicks (James Gaudioso) and Noah Evans (Rusty Joiner).  It's Rusty that really stands out and has the most screen time alongside Murray's heroine.

Unsullied screenshot-25

Simeon explained how he always envisioned a villain that held a Lucifer or Ted Bundy quality.  An evil figure that still has looks of an angel or regular guy.  Basically the adage of "You can't trust a book by it's cover". 

Super Bowl Champion and former All-Pro Simeon Rice breaks into the film world with #Unsullied, starring Rusty Joiner & Murray Gray.

And now here is the full interview with Writer/Director Simeon Rice.

Interview with Simeon Rice:

Unsullied is out in theaters tomorrow August 28th.

Behind-the-scenes of #Unsullied with Rusty Joiner, Murray Gray & Simeon Rice.

Don't miss out on the hunt.


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