Former Cape resident returns to make next movie
If Carey Coffey’s story sounds like something out of a Hollywood movie, it is not by accident. Coffey has transformed himself from a troubled Cape Coral youth into an emerging Hollywood talent.
Now, Coffey wants to bring his West Coast experiences back home by writing, directing and producing a major motion picture in the Cape.
“I know it like the back of my hand,” he said of his desire to film in the Cape. “I can create a story that’s organic to the landscape … one of the main reasons I wanted to shoot here is because it’s so different from Los Angeles. Here, it’s peaceful, beautiful and green.”
A self-described dropout, Coffey briefly attended Cape High and the Alternative Learning Center, the latter he described as a prison, before leaving school permanently.
Crazy adventures followed, but so did trouble, and after Coffey earned his GED, he started looking back on his childhood as perfect fodder for the original screenplays he was beginning to dabble in.
“When I was 11, I thought, ‘This is more interesting than anything I was seeing in the movies.’ And I wanted to put what I was experiencing into the movies,” he said.
Still in the writing process, Coffey’s Cape-based movie has the tentative title of “Headbanger,” and relies on the early adventures of his youth to help tell the story.
He relied on those same experiences while writing the film “Camoflouge,” which will have its world premiere at the Dances with Films film festival in West Hollywood in June. Out of 1,500 entries, only 22 were accepted to the festival.
The film, starring C. Thomas Howell and Bug Hall, tells of a troubled teenage boy sent to boot camp, where he faces the challenges of a demented camp counselor.
The film represents a kind of coming out party for the multi-talented Coffey. Not only did he write the screenplay, he acted as the cinematographer and producer and controlled the film’s music and soundtrack.
If anything, “Camoflouge” is the culmination of hard work and study in Los Angeles. Coffey said he spent night and after night toiling away on his screenplays, learning everything he could about the film business.
After arriving in Los Angeles with little more than $100 in his pocket, Coffey quickly realized if he wanted to make his dream come true, he had to make it happen all on his own.
“I worked at it every single day. I never went out to drink, I didn’t socialize, I stayed in and worked, day and night,” he said. “I don’t like to wait around for things to happen, I want to make them happen.”
Even though he is still writing his new screenplay, Coffey hopes to begin shooting in January or February to take advantage of the cooler temperatures.
He thinks Cape Coral, and all of Lee County, could use the film business in a positive way.
Returning home after five years in Hollywood, Coffey was shocked to find his hometown has dramatically changed.
“The horrible state of the economy here, it’s just shocking. There’s a strange feeling about the town right now that I’ve never felt before,” he said. “My family has been hit hard by the economy.”
As Coffey moves forward on the film project, he wants to know if anyone interested in being involved. If so, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on his current film “Camoflouge,” visit: imdb.com.