On March 20, 2015 the music world lost AJ Pero, drummer of the iconic band Twisted Sister and most recently Adrenaline Mob. One week later I interviewed Antonio Saillant of Angel Light Pictures Entertainment Group and asked him to share the story of how AJ Pero not only loved music but also acting.
Jay Scorpion: How did you meet/get to know AJ Pero?
Antonio Saillant: I met AJ Pero through a mutual friend who invited me to the premiere of AJ‘s first film, ‘Priceless’, directed by André Joseph.
A short time later AJ was hosting a radio show, Celebrity Spotlight. He invited me to be on the show to be interviewed.
JS: When did AJ seem interested in acting/did he pursue a part in one of your films or was he ‘the guy’?
AS: AJ told me that it was always a dream of his to become an actor. The problem was finding time because of his demanding schedule with Twist and other commitments.
I had been developing a film, ‘Red Right Wrong’, with Robert Stock, an independent filmmaker. AJ seemed like a perfect fit for one of the lead roles so I contacted him about participating.
JS: Tell me about ‘Red Right Wrong’.
AS: ‘RRW’ is about Russian Roulette in Hell’s Kitchen, New York City. Billy, played by AJ, is a thug who kills two henchman – shooting them in the back. But, was he set up? Billy calls on Nico, the local crime boss, to put things right. A game of Russian roulette ensues between Billy and his arch rival, Kirk.
JS: How was AJ on set? Comfortable? Nervous?
AS: AJ was a consummate professional. He took direction quite well, and worked hard to project the image we were looking for. He was also totally cool on the set, and even offered to sleep on the couch at our studio when space was tight.
JS: Did AJ get to see any of the final project?
AS: Yes, AJ received a DVD copy of the film. He was very satisfied and excited with the final piece. ‘RRW’ was very dear to him. His dream was to one day expand his talent into the Art of Acting.
JS: AJ never really was open on wanting to act, why do you think that was?
AS: I believe he was open to us and most likely his family. I think that AJ believed that every great dream begins with a dreamer. AJ had the strength within himself and the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars. I think AJ just wanted to separate the music and the acting. It is actually two different worlds.
I should also point out that AJ penned a couple of scripts and stories. We found one of his scripts, ‘Three Strikes’, so compelling that we optioned it and put it on our development docket.
JS: Will ‘Red Right Wrong’ get to be seen by the world?
AS: We had our premiere screening at The Bing Arts Center in Springfield, Massachusetts, toward the end of last year. Currently, I am submitting to film festivals to continue to get the film out into the world.