Jason Mac: A Love Letter to My Dad (Part 3)

John FarrellBy John Farrell5 Minutes

John Farrell: Going back to your movie, A Father’s Legacy, tell me a little bit about your character, Nick Wolfe.

Jason Mac: Nick is a young guy. Never knew his father. He’s impulsive. He carries this baggage of, “Who am I because I never knew where I came from? Did he not want me? Did he not love me? Why did he leave? Why wasn’t he there for me growing up?” So, he sets out to go find him and makes some really, really poor decisions along the way.

But one of the themes of the film is there are consequences to our actions. One of the big scenes in the film is him and Billy – the old man – skipping stones on a pond. The old man says, “My father used to tell me that at the center of every ripple is a decision we make and those ripples that go out from that, those are the consequences. Those are the reverb from that decision, and it can affect other people in our lives.”

Nick never really had anyone tell him that. Essentially, he’s a good dude, but he’s selfish. He’s impulsive. As we get older and we start having families and really in-depth relationships, we have to take a view of those around us. Also, how are we impacting those around us? That’s kind of his journey, learning to think about his actions, think about the consequences, and think about those he loves and what impact he’s going to have on them.

JF: What was it like on set during shoots?

Jason: Busy. We shot this thing in 15 days, and we didn’t go crazy. We shot standard 12-hour days, and it was busy. Between directing and acting, that’s a lot to do and there’s not really time to just sit around. There’s always a decision to be made.

I think it’s true the saying, “A director’s job is just to answer questions.” That’s true because there are tons of questions, but everyone’s trying to help you fulfill your vision. So, we would show up. We had a wonderful crew. John Carrington was our cinematographer and he shot it so beautifully and very quickly. We had a wonderful first AD who kept us on track. I had a wonderful producing partner in John Lerchen, who handled a lot of the producing duties while I was acting and directing. It would have been really tough without him.

It was busy. It was fun, but I knew the razor’s edge that we were walking on and we didn’t have contingency days. It’s like, we either get this or we’re in trouble so we had to make sure we stayed on task.

JF: What’s next for you?

Jason: That’s a great question. I’m reading some scripts right now to see if anything jumps out and if I want to put my spin on it as a director, but I’ve also been really interested in — and this is going to be strange — I’m really interested in horror right now. I never used to be a horror guy, but the past couple of years I’ve kind of found myself watching some things and I get really scared. I jump really easy and it’s an interesting feeling. I’m just exploring that and seeing if I have anything to say in that genre. Those are the things that I’ve got going on and I’m excited to see what comes next.

JF: Is there anything else you’d like to add that I perhaps didn’t ask or something that you’d like to reemphasize?

Jason: My goal for the movie is for people to see it, to enjoy it, to be able to relate to it, and to tell people that they love them while they can, and to keep in mind, “What is my impact on those people around me? What is the legacy I’m going to leave behind?” That’s really what it’s about.