Film Nourishes me as Nothing Else Can – Craig Rainey
Craig Rainey’s film career has spanned more than 14 years and more than 60 film projects. Through it all, he has kept a sense of self through it all. Contrary to what is believed, less than 10% of all film actors make more than $2,500.00 per year. That’s right: the vast majority of actors work for free – or nearly so.
So what drives the actor for which the industry will never yield a paying career?
For Craig Rainey, it is a love of the process. He said in a recent interview, that he was not much of a fan of seeing himself on the big screen. He isn’t driven by a pursuit of fame or popularity. He claims he loves the process of filmmaking. He says it nourishes him as nothing else can.
Craig Rainey’s Acting Reel
The Greatest Thrill – Appearing on a DVD Cover or Movie Poster
Throughout his career, Craig Rainey has been regarded as a solid professional who is off book before his fellow cast members. He excels at continuity from set-up to set-up. His greatest tool is his huge presence in a scene. Brett William Mauser of Not So Sane Entertainment said once that he had to cast Craig as a heavy because few actors were strong enough to oppose over-shadow him in a scene. Craig Rainey brings a forbidding persona to his roles without seeming to try.
His image has graced the cover of many DVD covers, and his collection of movie posters is impressive.
Below is a small sampling:
Bass Reeves (All Hell to Pay) – 2010 – Ponderous Productions
In the feature film, Bass Reeves (All Hell to Pay) 2009, Rainey plays the notorious outlaw, Bob Dozier, in frontier America.
Bass Reeves (James House), is the true historical character of the first black Federal Marshall. The Dozier character (Craig Rainey) is based upon a conglomeration of several outlaws Reeves brought to justice.
The indie film, Bass Reeves, was picked up and the title changed to All Hell to Pay.
The Return of Johnny V – 2014 – Mutt Productions
Hollywood filmmakers, Mutt Productions produced the Grindhouse movie as a tongue in cheek shot at the genre’s shoot-em-up action films surging at that time.
Directors, Aaron Lee Lopez and Ryan Young, were the brain trust behind one of the most memorable movies to be filmed in south-central Texas.
Craig Rainey was referred to the film production company by an industry colleague at the Annual Film Industry Christmas Mixer held anually at Sunset Station in San Antonio.
He met with Mutt Productions to read for the role of a cop, a smaller role. Aaron Lee Lopez, on a whim, asked Craig to test for the Mayor role. He won the role, beating out a major television star.
Since the film’s debut, Craig Rainey has been heralded for his work as the quirky arch villain in the film by many industry pros. From the writer of the film, Niel Knox, to popular actors and film makers in Hollywood, Craig Rainey has been praised in his portrayal of the Mayor.
Mahogany Sunrise (Gang Money Run) – 2014 – Mutt Productions
Craig Rainey played the blonde haired, leather jacket and jack boot clad, Lester Freemont, in the action film originally titled Mahogany Sunrise. Director R. Scott Leisk auditioned several actors for the role of the Hitman.
Mutt Productions executive producer, Mario Sanchez, asked Craig to fill the role only days before scheduled shooting for the Freemont character’s scenes. The day before his call, Aaron Lee Lopez asked him to bleach his hair for the role. Director Leisk was shocked when Rainey showed up on set in costume.
The film shot with the last minute addition, without a hitch. The movie achieved major distribution quickly after post production was completed.
It is available on Amazon, Netflix, and many other outlets. (see the San Antonio Current Review)
The Innocent Killers – 2009 – Ponderous Productions
Brett William Mauser, was founder and whirling dervish director behind the former film company, Ponderous Productions. He later opened a new production company, Not So Sane Entertainment. He was awarded Best Filmmaker in San Antonio’s #3 in 2011 Current Magazine’s rankings.
This remarkable San Antonio film icon did what few Hollywood production houses dare not do.
He produced a 10 full feature film saga in 12 months. The series is called the Innocence Saga. Craig Rainey was cast as Collin Donovan, billionaire crime boss and villain, in the series.
Craig’s interview is a must see. He recaps the process and some of the moments he found most memorable. Brett was one of the first film makers to give Craig a break in the business. Since then they have worked together on nearly 20 films.
The first installment in the Innocence Saga is called ‘The Innocent Killers.
The cast was more than 400 local and regional actors. Shot across multiple locations across Texas, the undertaking was colossal.
V.O.S.O.T. – Voice Over Sound On Tape – 2012 – Not So Sane Entertainment
It is not widely known that Craig Rainey broke his back in 2012. He was in the hospital at the beginning of filming of VOSOT, an interesting love story between two members of a news team for a small local television station.
He shot all of his scenes heavily medicated and in and out of a back brace.
Much of the movie was shot at KENS 5 TV’s back up studios. When Craig was finally well enough to shoot his scenes the studio was unavailable. All of his scenes in studio were shot in one of the crew member’s garage with green screen backdrops.
The site to see excerpt stories from the original film is at the link below:
Heroic Journey of the Gay Man – 2013 – Not So Sane Entertainment
Jade Esteban Estrada is a quickly rising star in the gay entertainment community. He and Craig Rainey developed a mutual friendship and respect starting when they first worked together on the Innocence Saga.
Jade and Brett Mauser collaborated to film a short that went on to garner several awards at numerous film festivals.
Heroic Journey of the Gay Man is a unique perspective on a tale featuring the components of the Immortal Mythos. If you don’t know what I mean, look it up on Wikipedia.
Craig Rainey was invited to play the role of narrator/host. The film deals with seriously polarizing issues employing humor and a slight deviation into weirdness. Craig is front and center in the poster.
The link below the poster pic is your journey to see the entire 20 something minute film. Enjoy.
Portrait in Sepia Tone – 2007 – Point at the Moon Productions
The art film, Portrait in Sepia Tone was Craig Rainey’s first leading role. In the Film Noir project he plays Dr. Marshall Dekker, an Edwardian era physician dealing with his wife who is torn between traditional conservative values and the allure of the women’s movement and long awaited suffrage for women.
Dr. Nancy Membrez, professor at UTSA in San Antonio wrote and directed the film. The project was shot both on location at the Northrup Ranch in Pipe Creek and in a sound stage with constructed sets at the UTSA campus in downtown San Antonio.
Craig recalls the day he auditioned for the role. Nancy and the lead actress, Emily Eldredge, had a different and much older actor in mind. Craig auditioned so powerfully and convincingly that both women were frightened and moved by his passion in his audition performance to change their casting requirements.