Without you realizing it, Kim Bass has probably been a big part of your life. “Sister, Sister,” “Kenan and Kel,” “In Living Color” and more–if you’ve watched these shows, you’ve seen the product of Bass’ writing work. In fact, “Sister, Sister” and “Kenan and Kel” were created by Bass.
Bass loved writing for television, but he also felt that there was something else he wanted to do. “I enjoyed my time,” he said. “Not to be cliche, but I’ve always wanted to direct.”
Just like his career in television was a success, his career as a screenwriter and movie director is also flourishing. “They’ve begun to grow in scope and scale, as well as the budgets they’re allowed,” he said of his films. “As you’re writing [a screenplay], you begin to think, ‘I can make this,’ instead of writing it and selling it to someone else.”
Two of Bass’s films that are about to be released are “Kill Speed” and “Junkyard Dog.” “Junkyard Dog,” starring Vivica A. Fox, Brad Dourif and Innis Casey, tells the unfortunate story of a girl who is abducted by a person whom she believed to be a tow truck driver. The basis for this psychological thriller, said Bass comes from several different stories.
“In Syracuse, New York, there was a “Dungeon Master” who kidnapped his first woman–I think she was 14 years old–and from 1988 to 2003, he would kidnap women and assault them on a daily basis, make them read the Bible, dance with him, just a lot of bizarre stuff,” he said. “There’s another story of a girl who I believe was 18 years old in Texas. The last time her parents ever saw her was when a tow truck pulled up along the side of the road. And in Europe, there was a story of a man with a bunker-slash-container that he built, and he would catch guys and consume them.”
The film also has some personal stories attached to it, such as the night a friend of his called him. “A young friend of mine called me one night,” he said. “Her car had broken down in an unsavory area, and she was calling me so I could keep her company until the tow truck driver arrived. I asked her, ‘Where are you?’ and went out to stay with her until the truck came. I was thinking, ‘You’re gonna wait out here in an unsavory neighborhood in the middle of the night for a tow truck driver, and you’re going to get in his truck and you don’t know who this guy is. So, I stayed out there with her and sure enough, the tow truck driver looked scary.”
Another story involves Bass’s upbringing. “I have four sisters and I would always worry about them when they would go out. I remember my father telling me, ‘You never give the car to your sisters with an empty tank of gas.’ I was told ‘Look out for your sisters, your mother, your grandmother.’ The film kinda has a message, which is you don’t want to be afraid of people, but you want to be aware and you don’t want to put yourself in a situation where something can happen to you. You want to be responsible. It’s a bit irresponsible to be driving around in your car at night with little gas.”
“Kill Speed,” a “Fast and the Furious”-type film about young pilots who decide to live the jet-set life through drug trafficking, stars Andrew Keegan, Brandon Quinn and Nick Carter. This film also has a real life story as its basis. “There was an article about an airplane pilot who had 300 pounds of cocaine in his plane,” he said. Bass, also a pilot, also cited some flying statistics. “One thing people don’t realize is that there are about 600 commercial airports being used by the commercial airlines, but there are 6000 airports, so if you have a small plane, you can go wherever you want. Since these drug planes are stolen sometimes, they buy them at auction. They are a very quick way to move drugs around.
“I thought, ‘How easy would it be for some kids to get these souped-up, modified planes that go 300 miles per hour?'” he said. “So in the film, these kids make their money by delivering the drugs. 100 pounds of crystal meth is about $300,000 on the street. So these kids are buying houses, cars, all by delivering drugs.”
Bass lauds the talent he had for both films as being professionals who wanted to do their best work. “If you treat them like professionals, they’ll treat you like a professional,” he said. “They were pleasures to work with.”
Also, the actors in both films do a lot of their own stunts in the films. “Innis Casey, who plays the villain in ‘Junkyard Dog,’ is a really nice guy,” he said. “He’s also a method actor; he really channeled his character so well, and he remained in character the whole time we were shooting in Tennessee. So when we would go to dinner, he’d still be in character and it’d be really creepy. But he’s fantastic.”
“Nick Carter doesn’t particularly like flying, but he said ‘I’ll do it since we’re going to be doing a flying movie,'” he said when talking about Carter’s involvement in “Kill Speed.” “The actors actually flew and did their acting flying,” he said. “They were going between 300-500 miles per hour. That was kinda the first time that’d been done. It’s all real. They were all troopers.”
Bass has another film going into production soon–Western film “The UnBroken,” which will start filming very soon. What Bass hopes happens for all of his films is for them to find a loving audience. “I really just hope these pictures find an audience and that the audience finds these pictures.” He said. “They’ll be pleasantly surprised.”
“Junkyard Dog” will be released May 15 and “Kill Speed” will be released June 12. You can learn more about the films at Bass Entertainment Pictures.
(Vivica A. Fox in “Junkyard Dog.” Credit: Bass Entertainment Pictures)