Published on May 3rd, 2020 | by Dr. Jerry Doby


Exploring the Badland Movie with Lead Actor Kevin Makely and Producer Jennifer Ambrose

Detective Matthias Breecher (played by Kevin Makely) is hired to track down the worst of the Confederate war criminals. As he roams the Old West seeking justice, his resolve is tested when he meets a determined pioneer woman who is far more than she seems.

What brought you to the entertainment industry?

Jennifer: My passion for film. It’s always been my favorite form of storytelling and a way to inspire and entertain others. Although I took an alternative path, becoming an attorney first and then with friends as filmmakers, coming into the industry was pretty organic. My friends needed help with contracts and deal-making. I was in a position to help and do what I love. It was a no-brainer. Becoming a producer was the next logical step for me.

Kevin: I have had a love affair with film and TV since I was a child. Being an 80’s kid in a single-parent home (my mom) guys like Eastwood, Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Redford, Mark Hamill were my male role models. Growing up I wanted to be Luke Skywalker, Rambo, Conan. When I grew up I wanted to be like the actors that portrayed my heroes.

Give us the rundown on Badland and what you love about it.

Jennifer: The nostalgia. The talent. All the wonderful people that worked so hard to bring it together. It’s obviously the first film I am credited as a producer on so it will always be my baby in way. I learned so many lessons.

Kevin: I would like to say something about the making of or the story, but what I am loving about BADLAND right now is that without any marketing or advertising BADLAND spoke to the audience! It rose to #3 on the NETFLIX top ten list because the people watched it and shared it and talked about it! It happened organically and it is a special gift that I will hold dear forever. Thank you all for being a part of that!

Kevin, what was the most challenging part of playing your character?

The most challenging part of playing my character was acting opposite so many award winning, talented, iconic actors. Bruce Dern, Mira Sorvino, Wes Studi, Jeff Fahey, Tony Todd, Amanda Wyss and the larger than life Trace Adkins. Every day was a challenge to fill those boots, to feel adequate, but always an absolute pleasure!

Jennifer, what was the most challenging part of Producing Badland? 

I am sure Kevin feels the same way but wearing multiple hats. As a producer, you are typically coordinating, putting out fires as they come along. But as Business Affairs and Producer on a film, you have your hand in almost every aspect and I am a one-woman show. I don’t know if most people realize the amount of work that goes into the business side of making a film. Not only the negotiations and the deal-making but the drafting, contracts, chain of title documents, locations, insurances, the list goes on and on. There is usually a fair amount of back and forth in the initial deal process getting to the bottom of major points such as pay, schedule, approvals depending on level of talent and crew. This could take weeks or more. Then once drafted, each long contract has to be seen by multiple parties on either side, agents, attorneys. There are sometimes hundreds of comments made that have to be tweaked and revised. Depending on how large your cast and crew is and on this film we had several named talent, it’s a big job. The studios all have associates and a team of people to assist in this process but not us! Add all the responsibilities of producing to this and you are working around the clock. But that probably won’t change for awhile so we are prepared for the same amount of work on the next project!

What’s on your slate for 2020, post corona?!

We have several projects on the horizon. Before Corona, we were in pre-production on a film entitled Day of Reckoning which is an action film written by an amazing writer named Travis Opgenorth. Our timeline may change a bit now that we are operating in a different world but the script is great and we will be able to attach a stellar cast while working with a fantastic stunt team.

We also just acquired a book series by an author named Bobby Cole. The first in the series is entitled The Dummy Line and the screenplay is already completed. The main character (that would be played by Kevin) is Jake Crosby. In the first installment, he goes on a hunting trip with his daughter and runs into a group of some really bad guys. Jake ends up killing one and the rest of the film is spent with Jake running for his life and trying to protect his daughter in order to make it out of the woods with the rest of the group hunting him down.  So the hunter becomes the Hunted. It’s a thriller and we are in discussions with a company that produces outdoor gear to collaborate.

But most immediately, we are working on a comic book based on the Breecher character in Badland. It will be a moving comic and we are now casting some big names to voice the characters. The comic book would be used as a fundraiser and 100 percent of donations would go to the Actor’s Fund. This fund provides assistance to anyone working in the entertainment industry including actors, crew, musicians, artists, etc. They have raised 14 million dollars thus far for Covid relief and our donations would go toward this same program.

Beyond that we have other projects in store including a series and shorter content which is trending right now.

About the Author

Editor-in-Chief of The Hype Magazine, Media and SEO Consultant, Journalist, Ph.D. and retired combat vet. 2023 recipient of The President's Lifetime Achievement Award. Partner at THM Media Group. Member of the U.S. Department of Arts and Culture, the United States Press Agency and ForbesBLK.

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