Chad and Michelle Verdi started producing movies just a few years ago, but they are already playing in the big leagues, co-producing movies with none other than Martin Scorsese. Scorsese is executive producing the very movie the Verdis got into the film business to make – “Bleed for This,” about Vinnie Pazienza.
This week, EG-based Verdi Productions announced two more actors signed on to “Bleed for This,” Katey Sagal and Ciaran Hinds, as Vinnie’s parents. They join Miles Teller, who has been signed to play Vinnie, and Aaron Eckhart is to play Vinnie’s trainer. Rhode Island native and Verdi favorite Tom DeNucci has a part too. Ben Younger is director.
“Having Katey and Ciaran on board is huge,” said Chad Verdi. Sagal is known from her work on “Sons of Anarchy” and “Married … with Children.” Hinds, from Ireland, can be seen on “Game of Thrones” and “Frozen” most recently
Filming – which will take place “100 percent” in Rhode Island, Verdi said – begins Nov. 1 and will go for seven to eight weeks. More than 100 people will be hired to work on the film.
“We’re going to film all over Rhode Island,” Verdi said, including in East Greenwich. But the only sure sites, so far, are Twin Oaks restaurant, Twin Rivers casino, the Dunk, the Biltmore and Gregg’s restaurant (Gregg’s is owned by a Verdi company).
“Bleed for This” is only one of several films Verdi Productions is working on with Scorsese and his producing partner Emma Tillinger Koskoff, including The 50-Year Argument, an HBO documentary, premieres in New York Sept. 28 and will be shown on HBO starting Sept. 29.
“We love working together,” Verdi said of the relationship.
Just how did an East Greenwich couple become such movie-making heavyweights?
Verdi said it’s because they figured out early on how to make successful movies – specifically, by keeping costs down. Instead of spending lots of money on actors, Verdi offers a basic salary and points in the finished product.
“That’s the best way to make a film,” said Verdi. “Everyone has skin in the game. It makes it a lot easier.”