“We Need Rent Money” – Movie Filmed in Eugene
We were invited to a private screening of a movie filmed in Eugene, called We Need Rent Money. On Friday, February 18, we went to the Wildish Theatre in Springfield where a large crowd of people who either acted in the film or were associated with the crew, along with media (that’s us!) to watch. The film is a romp through what happens to three roommates who are trying to scrape together rent money in 7 days. The filmmaker, director Blake Laitner, said it was inspired by Dumb and Dumber, Cheech and Chong, and Animals House, and indeed, it was not difficult to find the throughlines of those comedic gems in this movie.
The roommates decide that in order to get rent money in time, they’ll have to resort to some nefarious means, which includes selling weed (which no one wants to buy), selling molly (which their landlord seems to like and wants for himself), stealing credit card information, selling their organs, hosting keg parties in their house, and more. Needless to say, nothing really works out well, but it’s funny along the way.
The movie was written by Blake Laitner and Sampson Ray Simon, who plays one of the roommates in the most convincing acting role of all. His try at becoming a rap star, Lil Sandpaper, in order to get paying gigs, was among the funniest bits in the movie. At the Q&A session at the end of the filming, Ray Simon said he indeed did hurt himself doing some of the stunts as Lil Sandpaper, whose shtick was masochism, which is supposedly what sets apart popular rap artists these days.
Local actors Jason Leva and Malakhai Schnell play the other two roommates. Local people fill out many of the supporting roles, and many well-known locations play the part of backdrops (Old Nick’s Pub, Alton Baker Park, Pegasus Pizza, among others).
The crew believes that this movie represents the largest Eugene-based crew on a movie filmed here since Animal House. Laitner is seeking distribution for the film, and plans to show it at a film festival in Klamath Falls later this year. Check them out to learn more: https://www.facebook.com/WeNeedRent; weneedrentmoney.com