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Phillips stars in “The Creep Behind the Camera”

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Making the festival circuit

Sopris Sun Staff Report

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Roaring Fork Valley resident Josh Phillips stars in the feature film “The Creep Behind the Camera,” which will play for one day only at the Crystal Theatre at 2 p.m. on Dec. 6.

Originally from northern California, Phillips has been an on-again, off again Carbondale resident since the early 1990’s. While he is well known in the valley as an accomplished rock/blues guitarist, Phillips also has an acting career that many were unaware of, according to a press release.

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Long-time locals may remember him as the front man for 12BarFlies, Big Swifty, Zec Nebula, Fire In the Asylum, and more recently Betty Ford Explorer, The Roosters, and the acoustic duo Josh and Ananda.

After spending the 1990’s in the Roaring Fork Valley as a ski-lift operator by day and rocker by night, Phillips headed back to Los Angeles where he spent 11 years working as an actor in films, television shows, commercials, video games and anime voice-overs. Upon returning to Colorado in 2010, one of his Los Angeles contacts suggested that Phillips read for the starring role of Vic Savage in a Colorado Springs-based independent film.

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“The rest is about to make movie history here on the big screen of the Crystal Theatre,” said a spokeswoman for Phillips.

A feature-length dark comedy, “The Creep Behind the Camera” chronicles the outlandish story of director Art Nelson (AKA Vic Savage), an irredeemable con-artist (and all-round jerk) in his audacious efforts to produce a monster movie in 1964. The result was the obscure yet cultish film “The Creeping Terror.” Considered to be the worst movie ever made, it also became one of the most mind-boggling scams in the history of celluloid.

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As “The Creep Behind the Camera” made its recent rounds in the film festival circuit, Phillips has amassed some rave reviews.

Michael Klug from Best Horror Movies states: “… the picture belongs to Josh Phillips as Vic Savage. At once charming, then alarming, then downright brooding and frightening, he runs the emotional gamut … It’s a real tour-de-force performance and worthy of greater attentions.”

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Simon Laperriere from the Fantasia Fantastic Film Festival: “Josh Phillips is the real deal … (he) is a marvelous in a bipolar performance and the sense of rhythm gives him a chance to shine.”

Twitch Film said: “Josh Phillips plays the maniacal Art Nelson and impressively manages to avoid portraying him as a cartoon, even when the script pushes him hard in that direction. During the scenes of domestic abuse, he even becomes a disturbingly menacing presence, all fun and charm, leaving his character at the drop of a hat when necessary.”

Culture Crypt has this to say: “Phillips and Thomas breathe authentic dimension into archetypes that could have been standard lifetime movie abuser and abused, but instead elicit hate, heartbreak, pity, sadness, and sympathy.”  

“The Creep Behind the Camera” has just completed its film festival circuit with a world premiere in Amsterdam, showings in London and Montreal, and it’s American debut at Screamfest in Los Angeles last month. The film is also slated to be shown at PollyGrind Film Festival in Las Vegas. Other than a special showing in Denver and one in Colorado Springs, this Carbondale showing will be the last time the movie hits the big screen until it goes into distribution.

The film is not yet rated but is likely an R.

Next steps

What: Showing of “The Creep Behind the Camera”;

When: Dec. 6 at 2 p.m.;

Where: The Crystal Theatre on Main Street in Carbondale;

How much: $10 at Dos Gringos in La Fontana Plaza;

Insider tip: The film will likely sell out so get your tickets early.

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