Young filmmaker unveils romantic drama ‘Last Party’

Santos finished Film school in three years and graduated Summa Cum Laude.

Director Julian Carlo Santos’s debut film “Last Party” is coming to New York festivals this summer.

A romantic drama about the intertwined stories of three couples during a Christmas party, “Last Party” was helmed by Santos when he was 23 years old.  He is now 24. Early reviews have called the film “a magnificent example of what cinema can do… with just a camera, a bunch of willing people, and, obviously, a lot of talent.” The film was produced by City Bear Media.

The film stars New Yorker actors Gabriel Armentano, Samantha Brooks, Martin Drop, Anna Clare Kerr, James Williams, and Lainey Woo. It is the feature film debut of Samantha Brooks, granddaughter of actor, comedian, and producer Mel Brooks.

“As a director, I strongly believe in rehearsal and the rich collaborative process between actor and director,” said Santos in a statement. “Most of my films are extensively rehearsed and rewritten, with the aim of creating very honestly realistic stories.”

Originally from San Francisco, Santos is a first-generation Filipino American who is the first in his immediate family to pursue a career in the arts. He was formerly a child actor, performing in Bay Area plays at American Conservatory Theater and Young Performers Theatre.

He attended college at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts completing his degree in Film in three years and graduating summa cum laude. “The degree normally takes four years to complete, but I had some advanced credits from high school,” he said.

A romantic scene from ‘Last Party’

He pursued opportunities to study abroad and has consequently directed films in France and England.

His father, a tax attorney,  is from Manila, and his mother, a computer analyst for Kaiser Permanente,  is from Olongapo. They met in San Francisco.

“They both came here with their families though they were already working. My mother has never returned, and my father only went back once in 1986,” he told The FilAm.

Along with co-founder, Benjamin D. Goebel, Santos created the production company, City Bear Media. Previous shorts done by CBM have found homes in various indie distributors.

– “Le Temps Perdu” (2018), a French-language romance short shot on location in Paris, is

currently available online via Daylight Interactive.

-“The Spellbook” (2020), a horror short will be part of the upcoming anthology feature film, “Ghosts” (2020).

Santos currently works as an assistant colorist and editor at MacGuffin Films, a table-top commercial production company. He continues to produce narrative work under the CBM banner and pursue freelance opportunities, doing music videos and editing work.

Upcoming projects include two feature screenplays — a horror period piece entitled “Inkblack,” and a romance entitled “Eating and Drinking.” Santos is co-writing the latter with Kevin J. Nittolo, a short film writer from Dallas.

“Last Party” will be streamed as part of the New York Indie Film Festival to be held online on June 6th. It hopes to make its festival premiere at the Village East Cinema for the Manhattan Film Festival, which is taking place from June 19 to July 2. The trailer of the movie can be found here:

© The FilAm 2020

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