Howard Stern came up with a character known as "Fartman". He wanted to, at some point, make it a feature film. He even dressed up as Fartman for an awards show.
Well Howard never made his film, but a group of ambitions filmmakers from LA, led by Director Tammy Caplan, got together and shot a short film version for Howard for his Howard Stern Film Festival.
Sadly, Tammy's film was disqualified at the final stages of entry because of a rule the filmmakers overlooked that no SAG actors participate. Oops. But there is a happy ending, and many good lessons learned from the experience of shooting a comedy short about an underground Superhero; Fartman.
IF - What is your background?
TC - I was a theater major at UCLA. I've done some acting. Now its really easy to make your own film, and do your own projects. I find that really satisfying. It's always a great learning experience when you do your own project. Shooting the Howard Stern short was a cool experience that when you are the Director it helps you learn even more as an actor.
IF - What were the rules of submission for the Howard Stern Film Festival?
TC - There was a requirement that all of the films had to be 5 mins or less. All the films had to deal with the Howard Stern World. Really, anything within the world of Stern. But there were a couple of other things. You couldn't use the likeness of famous person. You had to make sure to remove any posters or signs from shooting locations; things like that. Your basic film fest rules.
IF - ...But there was another rule.
TC - They had 9 finalists, we hoped to be one of them but were disqualified. Somehow we missed the rule about casting Screen Actors Guild members.
IF - How far did your film go through the submission process? Did it get screened at the festival, or did they discover that you had used SAG actors before it got to that point?
TC - The Howard Stern Film Festival had over 2000 submissions. We got the call that "you are qualified as a finalist". Then they started asking questions to make sure we did everything we were supposed to to. We found out we missed that rule after we had completed our final sound edit. You know, we thought we had a good film and maybe they would bend the rules a bit. But the rules are the rules. And we decided to be honest about it. But we did find out it was one of their favorite films.
And, even though they couldn't accept our submission in the festival they showed it on "Howard TV" a channel on InDemand cable television.
IF - Do you think you might develop your own Superhero and turn that into a script?
TC - It's interesting you asked that. I have been outlining a super-hero movie. Doing the Fart-man movie makes me want to work more with the Super-hero idea. But I also like the comedic angle. There will be the comedic heros and villans in there. Kind of like the Fartman villain Tight Ass.
IF - Have you been to any of the comic book conventions?
TC - We actually went to comic con this year. It was our first time. We took the movie there trying to promote it as best we could. Just talking about it to people. It was a lot of fun. We had the costume with us but didn't wear it because we didn't want to scare any of the little kids. There were a lot of kids walking around. They probably would have thrown us out if we were walking around wearing the costume.
IF - Did Howard ever see your movie?
TC - We're not sure. We know he didn't see any films until the actual night of the festival. So were not sure if he's seen it. We know the people at Howard TV did. And they gave us a lot of great feedback. And because they liked it so much they decided to show it on Howard TV.
IF - Are you going to shoot any more films about Fartman?
TC - I would love to be able to more Fartman things for him if he wanted.
Tammy Caplans "Caught in a Tight Ass" is a satisfying portrayal of Howard Sterns Fartman. Look for the trailer on YouTube and Myspace.