OWA Profile: Brian Losoya, Screening Team

Brian Losoya, Programmer and Social Media Director

Brian Losoya, Programmer and Social Media Director

You’ve an actor, writer, director, and producer – are these equal passions or do you have a favorite?

This may sound pretentious, but I consider myself a storyteller first. Anything I do, be it acting, singing, writing, directing, etc, is about telling stories and making people feel something. Each job offers me different ways to do that and I enjoy the challenges of each of them! That said, producing is probably my least favorite part – I just want to be able to go go go and get projects done! A great producer is one of the best things you can ever find.

You’re also busy with theater work?

I've been doing theatre in Austin for four years now, and I've had some terrific experiences and opportunities to work with Tony Award winners and living legends. Musicals will always have a lock on my heart, be it on stage or on screen!

Do you have a preference between the stage and screen?

With film, there's a sense of separation, a feeling that allows you to get lost in the story and situations as a casual observer. I like this because it requires you to be detailed, precise, and to create a world that feels as real as possible. Theatre's strength is the opposite – you are always aware that what you are seeing is real people on stage, and it requires a suspension of disbelief. Whereas with film you are an observer, with theatre you are a part of the show.

When and how did you first get into the entertainment industry?

I started performing in church and in talent competitions at rodeos. Soon after, I joined some local choirs and eventually got to perform in Carnegie Hall with the National Children's Choir, which was very cool. I continued to local and competitive theatre and choir, and eventually attended UT Austin to study Music and American Studies. After graduation, I got plugged into the local theatre and film communities and have been trying to do as many projects as I can.

What are your most recent projects?

Film: I was so blessed to be a part of 'Zero Charisma' (which you can now buy on DVD and stream for FREE on Amazon Prime!), and I'm currently working on a short and developing a feature with my fellow OWA programmer Courtney Hazlett.

Theatre: I just closed a well-received production of Stephen Sondheim's 'Assassins' with Soubrette Productions, and I will be playing the lead in a workshop of a new musical by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, the Tony Award winning creators of Urinetown.

What would you like to do (in the business) that you haven’t done?

Make a living? I say that slightly in jest – I would love to be able to devote all of my time to telling stories, but my life goal is to direct feature musical films, be they new or adaptations of some of my favorite shows. And of course, I'd love to do a show on Broadway.

What appeals to you most about science fiction?

I love the possibility of it all. The medium allows for some of the most creative stories and ideas in film, because it's about things that aren't yet real. I love that we are getting technology that was conceived on TV shows and in movies decades ago. And I love that sci-fi makes us confront the unknown. Watching some of the greatest sci-fi films makes you think about what is possible, what's out there beyond our understanding, and to me that's really interesting.

Did any particular film or TV show have an early influence on you?

Without a doubt. For movies: The Great Muppet Caper, Clue, Annie, Mary Poppins, Batman (Tim Burton's first one), The African Queen, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and an assortment of disaster movies played non-stop in my house as a kid.

As for TV, I was obsessed with Buffy the Vampire Slayer, So Weird, Ghostwriter, All that, and of course, Power Rangers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. It's my secret dream that Disney would bring back Cara DeLizia and do a sequel series to So Weird where Fi guides her niece or daughter or whatever through the world of the supernatural.

What do you consider to be the Golden Age of sci-fi?

What a difficult question! I'm going have to go with the 70s, just because of the number of breathtaking and significant films that were released in the span of that decade. You look at the filmmakers who were starting their careers and defining the genre beyond what it had previously been known for, and it was a really special time for science fiction film. I love that the stories in so many of these films were treated with detail and weren't just written to be a vehicle for an idea, but fleshed out and purposeful.

What’s your experience with film festivals (as a filmgoer and from the festival side)?

I've worked as screener and subsequently a Forward Screener for Austin Film Festival. I have attended and been in a film at SXSW, and 'Zero Charisma' has done pretty well in the festival circuit. It's always great to get to see works from new filmmakers!

Is there anything else people should know about you?

My favorite movie of all time is 'Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World' and everyone should watch it. I also really love pizza and hamburgers. You can follow me on Twitter! I retweet funny people – @brianlosoya