“I love movies. The 2008 recession hit us hard so we watched a lot of VHS and DVDs,” said Myles Ross, 21, a filmmaker from Kent who attended the AMC theater at Kent Station in his youth: “I want to work in film, but I wanted to do an independent film and try to do the Spike Lee/Kevin Smith thing.”
And after a lengthy post-production thanks to COVID-19, Ross’s ambitions, hard work and money finally came to fruition as his first film, “The House,” made its Los Angeles premiere during Silicon Beach Film Festival at TCL Chinese 6 Theaters.
“You put all your savings into a movie and a global pandemic begins,” Ross said with a laugh. “It was the last two or three years of my life.”
“The House” is a sci-fi film about a group of teenagers reunited after a car accident leaves two on the verge of death – and the others struggling to decide their fate.
“A big inspiration for ‘The House’ is Kinji Fukasaku’s ‘Battle Royale,’ because it has teenagers in this situation where they have to make these tough decisions and ‘La Haine,’ which takes place over one night,” Ross said. , who attended the Seattle Film Institute for a year after graduating from Kent-Meridian High School in 2017. “When ‘The House’ was bubbling through my mind, I asked, ‘what does a Seattle movie look like?’ “
Although not specifically set in the Pacific Northwest, “The House” was filmed on location in West Seattle. Ross said the six cast members are all local to the area: Sagar Surana, who plays Jason, studied at the University of Washington, CJ Bussey (Jerome) is Ross’s cousin, Eric Lane (Nathan) is the one of Ross’ pals from SFI, and Gavin Michaels (Carl) is also from Kent.
“It was fun collaborating with friends,” Ross said of the cast and crew, which includes Melynda Myrvang, Ross’ producer and friend of SFI. “I really should be sitting here talking with Melynda. The film would not have been made without her.
Among the small cast is another local actor named Emily Gateley, who plays Wendy. Filming on “The House” couldn’t begin until November 2020, and while the film was in post-production, Gateley joined the cast of the 2022 Disney+ series “The Quest.”
“She’s killing it right now,” Ross said of Gateley, who was able to attend a screening of “The House” at the latest Hollywood festival, where the film won Best Ensemble Cast.
“The House” also won Best Supporting Actor for Surana’s portrayal of Jason at the 2022 Miami International Sci-Fi Film Festival.
“Festivals are like the right icing on the cake,” Ross said. “I feel really good to have won. Especially as a kid from Seattle, it feels good.
In addition to directing, Ross was the film’s co-writer and co-editor, and when not directing personal film projects, Ross is a freelance videographer and editor.
As for its future, Ross is optimistic and is already coming up with storyline ideas. Although he admits that moving to Los Angeles would probably be a good idea for his directing career, Ross also said he would be interested in working with video game companies in the Seattle area.
“I’m about to work as an editor, but I want to make more feature films,” said Ross, who created a documentary about alopecia and worked with the King County Fire District. “I love being on set, but part of me will always be an editor.”