The common denominator between cowboys and zombies is Spokane and Alex Terzieff. Gunslingers are the characters in the western film “Boon”, which was filmed in Spokane in January and February.
The living dead were the main attraction on “Z Nation,” which ran from 2014 to 2008 for five seasons on the Syfy channel. The zombie footage was filmed in and around Spokane.
Terzieff was the stunt coordinator in both productions. Without the Seattle native, “Boon” would not have been filmed in the lilac city. Terzieff, a longtime friend of “Boon” star, writer and producer Neal McDonough, suggested that Spokane would be perfect for the sequel to western “Red Stone”.
“Shortly after I got into this business in 2000, I was working on the film ‘Band of Brothers’ and met Neal,” Terzieff said when calling from Los Angeles. “We’ve been close friends ever since, and I can tell him anything.
“When we were at a huskies basketball game (University of Washington), he talked about doing ‘Boon’ in Washington. I suggested he think about Spokane. I told him if it was my production I would be shooting in Spokane. “
Terzieff is still digesting the “boon” experience while waiting for a COVID-19 test before working on the next David O. Russell film, a star-laden production with Oscar winners Robert De Niro and Christian Bale and Oscar-nominated actress Margot Robbie.
“We had a great time, although we had to deal with all the restrictions,” said Terzieff. “We hung out at the Ruby Suites where we stayed. I wanted to do what I did when I did ‘Z Nation’ and take the whole stunt team to Churchill’s (Steakhouse), but I couldn’t.
“I told my crew that if they did a particularly good stunt I would take them to Frankie Doodles. But we had fun on site. When we were out there, it was a reminder of why we came to Spokane in the first place. “
The composer Stephen Endelman, who directed the soundtrack “Boon”, was impressed with the aesthetics of Spokane. “It’s so nice in Spokane,” Endelman said while calling from Los Angeles as well. “It’s a gem. I never got tired of looking at the waterfall. We all wondered and enjoyed looking at the view.
“It was so relaxing and wonderful with the color schemes and seeing things in Spokane that people don’t notice it every day because they live there. I noticed how beautiful the city is under the cloud cover. Spokane is such a flashy city. Making a movie has never been more enjoyable than in Spokane. “
That says a lot since Endelman worked on a number of productions like “De-Lovely”, “Home of the Brave” and “Jawbreaker”.
“Boon” director Derek Presley laughed as he looked back on his Spokane experience. “What I enjoyed the most was the reaction from the people who live there,” said Presley when calling from his home in Dallas. “When we were shooting in the Garland District and blocking the traffic, the people weren’t just good at it, they were great. People recognized Neal from ‘Yellowstone’ and yelled, ‘We love you’ and ‘Thank you for filming in our town.’
“The reception in Spokane was fantastic. People have been great with us since day 1. We were hoping for snow on day 1. When we were in Spokane in November, it was snowing. Nothing happened in the first two and a half weeks we were there in January, and then it finally started to snow. We were all ready then. “
Presley was not happy with the amenities at Ruby Suites and was happy with the dining options. “It was great to stay there. The Ruby Suites has a nice lounge and a screening room where we showed our daily newspapers, ”said Presley. “One of my favorite places was Shawn’s Irish Pub (Shawn O’Donnell’s American Grill and Irish Pub). I loved the chicken pot pie and fish and chips.
“I spent most of my money at Caruso (sandwiches and artisan pizza) where I couldn’t get enough of the Italian (stallion) sandwich and pizza. I gained a lot of weight in Spokane. The only regret was that the breakfast place (brunchonette) wasn’t open as it was when we were there in November (exploration spots). “
The McDonoughs – Neal, his producer Ruve, and their five children, ages 6-15 – had a blast. If they weren’t on set for 12 hours, they’d hang out on South Hill with their house guest and young actor Pat Monahan, lead singer of Train, or toboggan by the fire nearby.
“We had the best time in Spokane,” said Ruve McDonough. “There is no place like this.” Neal McDonough agreed with his wife’s feelings. “Spokane is such a unique city from the grounds to the people who live there. We definitely want to come back. “