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Indy Film Montauk Highway: Blue Collar Meets Blue Blood

This is a concept trailer for a project called Montauk Highway, made by East Hampton High School alums Brooks Elms and Greg Cantwell. We think it looks really intriguing—we love thrillers—so we sat down and asked Brooks some questions about filmmaking and the Hamptons.

What exactly is a concept trailer?
The concept trailer is created to prove the concept. It's also called a rip-o-matic because aside from a handful of shots and the narration that we created, the rest of the footage was painstakingly pulled from other films to look like our movie.

Concept trailers are a perfect way for stars (and their reps) to see if it's worth spending a couple hours reading the script. Because most scripts don't fit for most people. Investors love concept trailers because it shows them exactly what they'll be selling when the film is finished.

We're expecting production of Montauk Highway to begin in 2014.

Where are you from?
I grew up on McGuirk Street in East Hampton. Same house my mom grew up in. Her side of the family goes back to people who made the windmills. I graduated EHHS in 1990 and live in LA now.

Why did you decide to become a filmmaker?
When I was a kid in East Hampton, my friends and I made a ton of movies and held premieres at the high school. For one of them we had more than a hundred people show up, including the mayor at the time. They also screened a lot on LTV.

Making movies was, and still is, pretty much the most satisfying way to spend my time. As difficult as it is, and as much of a roller coaster the lifestyle is—I absolutely love it.

Why did you decide to set the film in the Hamptons?
Where else do you find the son of a hedge fund CEO, the daughter of a Beatle, and the son of their landscaper all hanging out at the same beach party?

It's a stunning contrast of opulence against blue collar that always struck me as a perfect setting to make an authentic film about a class conflict love story.

Then my long-time East Hampton pal (and fellow professional screenwriter) Greg Cantwell suggested a plot wrapped around the question: how far will you go to get what you want? And with that timely theme, we knew we'd have something special, so he and I co-wrote the script.

What are your plans for the future?
Making more movies! Directing is the most satisfying, but even writing a script and walking away is awesome too. That allows me to work on a wider range of genres than what perfectly fits in my directing wheelhouse.