Lou Ferrigno’s Liberator



What do the Incredible Hulk, Lt. Worf and La Femme Nikita have in common? They’re all in LIBERATOR, the award-winning short film/pilot released on DVD this week. With an all-star genre cast designed to induce geek nirvana, the 20-minute movie stars Lou Ferrigno (TV’s Incredible Hulk as well as voice of the Hulk in THE AVENGERS) as a disgraced, washed-up ex-superhero trying to get his life back on the rails. The film also stars the stunning Peta Wilson (LA FEMME NIKITA) and Michael Dorn (STAR TREK: TNG and DEEP SPACE NINE,) as well as kickboxing legend Don “The Dragon” Wilson (BLOODFIST) and speaking of legendary — Ed Asner (UP) as President Whitlock.

LIBERATOR takes a gritty, realistic approach to the superhero movie, setting the story in the real world as opposed to a fictional city, with the media and political forces of the day very much a factor. In fact, the story eerily echoes current headlines — Ferrigno’s character is a former government operative turned whistle-blower. It’s a challenging, mature role, and Ferrigno puts in the performance of his life, winning the Best Actor award from Cinerockom Film Festival 2013. In addition, LIBERATOR snagged nine other awards during its festival run, including Best Short Film from Cinerockom and CalShorts, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress (Peta Wilson) from Cinerockom, Award of Excellence from IndieFest and Best Digital Comic Book from New Media Film Festival, along with numerous nominations (including Best Action Short from Action on Film.)

“(My character) was a hero once,” says Ferrigno. “The whole world looked up to him. But then something happened, and now everyone is against him. He lost his relationship with his daughter, his wife – he’s lost everything.  So he decides he’s going to bring out the truth and write a book. There are certain people who do not want this information coming out, so now he has a target on his back. And he decides it’s time to fight back.  It’s a story about a real hero, about finding justice, but also about a father’s love for his daughter and what he will do to win her back. It’s very personal and has a lot of resonance with my own life.”

“I like to think of my character, General Pollard, as a cross between Oliver North and Colin Powell,” says Michael Dorn. “He’s a guy who is true blue but who will do bad things if he’s ordered to do bad things, which is a great dichotomy of soldiers we have known. You just do what you’re told, and it doesn’t matter who you’re doing it to. He’s bought into that.”

Kickstarter-funded LIBERATOR’S buzz from its numerous 2013 screenings at festivals and panels at comic-cons led to it being picked up as a special 2-shot comic book series from Bluewater Comics, LOU FERRIGNO: LIBERATOR, published fall 2013. The success of that 2-shot series led to the publication of a special LOU FERRIGNO: LIBERATOR issue #0 as well as a graphic novel version of the story. The comics feature art from Gerry Kissell (Code Name: Geronimo.)

Now LIBERATOR has been released on DVD on the film’s website, featuring over 90 minutes of bonus content including cast interviews, behind the scenes featurettes and many more “deep geek” extras. Talks are underway for digital distribution in 2014. The goal of the pilot is to act as a proof of concept and hopefully interest people in the continuing adventures of these characters via a feature, series or webisodes.

Says Director Aaron Pope: “Launching a new superhero franchise without a comic label behind us and without money is a nearly impossible task, but from the amazing cast to the dedicated crew, no one blinked, no one wavered.  They put everything they had out there, especially our incredible cast. The fans also stepped up on Kickstarter – all of our cast have these amazing fan bases. We’re psyched at the tremendous reaction the film has received and are excited that now with the DVD many more people will be able to see it.”

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