Australian filmmaker and rock-trash impresario Josh “Sinbad” Collins releases Fags in the Fast Lane, his first film since Pervirella (1997). The cast includes the legendary Kitten Natividad, El Vez, the musical stylings of King Kahn and narration by Tex Perkins.
Where: Dullsville, “a town like any other town”, where bland food, bland music, and sexual repression rule the day.
When: At night, when marauding gay-bashers terrorize men’s athletic clubs and public toilets.
How: Fear not because the dashing, well-endowed Sir Beauregard “Beau” The Cockslinger (Chris Asimos) and his randy sidekick Reginald “Lump” Lumpton III (Matt Jones), are on the scene! These Maritime Musclemen fight for justice and the rights of “men who have the good time and decency to indulge in the time-honored pleasure of a fellow man.”
The plot sickens: At the behest of his mother, Kitten (The Legendary Kitten Natividad), Madam of the Golden GILFs, Beau and Lump along with their reluctant gay-bashing travel companion, Squirt (Oliver Bell), embark on a quest to track down the traitorous Billie Jean and her lover, the giantess Wanda (Aimee Nichols), leader of the lady freak gang The Choppers, to retrieve his mother’s jewels and the lucky, magical golden cock. With Squirt’s dad, Dullsville’s chief of police (Pugsley Buzzard) and his sadistic Lieutenant (Luke Clayson) hot on their trail, Beau and Lump enlist the aid of ass-kickin’ beauty, Salome (Sasha Cucha), and team up with the deadly assassin eunuch, Hijra (Rockin’ Psychedelic Soulsman King Khan), who seeks to reclaim his “precious golden cock” and extract revenge on Wanda and The Chompers.
Navigating through penis-infested swamps and desert roads, our heroes battle androgynous Elvis impersonators (Robert “El Vez” Lopez, Brook Sykes) in a weaponized tiki bar, fend off The Mummies, and encounter Aztec warriors who mistake Salome for their goddess Shemalé as they head for Freakytown to battle Wanda and The Chompers for Kitten’s stolen loot.
Some explanations from the players:
PKM: Can you tell me a little about your inspiration for Fags in the Fast Lane and how you found your movie’s gay superheroes?
Josh Sinbad Collins: The movie is inspired by so much stuff it’s hard to write it all down! Certainly a lifetime delving on the seedier side of exploitation movies has helped a lot! Flesh Gordon, Thundercrack, Desperate Living, The Pink Angels, Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill!, they all get more than a nod from me! I am also very influenced by erotic Franco-Italian comics that I grew up devouring at every opportunity, and still do! Fags in The Fast Lane originally started out as a post-apocalyptic movie (which it still is in a way—the apocalypse being death by normality!) but soon degenerated into a warped hyperrealist Aussie road movie.
Stephen G Michael, the writer and myself had a lot of fun (very disciplined fun, of course) sending up all sorts of stuff and pushing the plot as out there as we could. The hero team evolved from wanting to make a film with tuff gay characters and push any stereotypes to extremes.
PKM: Can you give me a little background on how FITFL came together?
Josh Collins: My last film Pervirella was about 20 years ago (it takes that long to get over the trauma of movie making!) and really it was about time to give it another go. My bar, The LuWOW, was a great location to film in and at the lease was coming up, some had to go really. I’d had the idea bubbling away for a while, and a phone call to Kitten and King Khan set the ball rolling, so it was full steam ahead.
It was getting any Australians involved that was hard! For each part in the film we must have gone through about 20 people before we found people to stay put. The Aussies mostly just couldn’t get their head around it and apparently it’s not good for their careers (I heard that many times)!
Fags In The Fast Lane’s colorful Aussie cast includes jazz musician/Wentworth actress Justine Jones, erotica writer/burlesque performer Aimee Nichols, Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla star Glenn Maynard, Luke Clayson, NOLA-style piano man, Pugsley Buzzard, Writer/Actor Sacha Cucha, Actor/ Stuntman Matt Jones, and Danger 5 actor Chris Asimos as Beau.
Josh Collins: Casting the roles was really hard though! Most people ran a mile! Finding Chris Asimos (Beau) such a gung-ho charmer and the biggest flirt ever was the lynchpin that made it all work.
PKM: How did you get working with Josh Collins on Fags in the Fast Lane?
Chris Asimos: I was recommended to Josh by another actor who actually played McBastard (Glenn Maynard) in the film. Josh got in contact with me and asked me in for an audition. I’m a huge fan of trashy cinema and Josh’s previous work Pervirella, so I was immediately sold with the idea of this film!
PKM: Can you tell me a little about your character, Sir Beauregard, The Cockslinger?
Chris Asimos: Beau will fight for what’s right. Defend those who are less fortunate and stand up for minorities of any category. He fights for equality and a better world for all humans. He accomplishes this with his wit, tact, quick reflexes and an appendage that has a mind of its own.
PKM: Can you tell me a little about your experience making the film?
Chris Asimos: Unlike most films, this was filmed over a year due to its budget and other time constraints of cast and crew. So I had to make sure I stayed in shape. It was sometimes a little tricky getting into the headspace of Beau after having a long time off.
Josh Collins: Filming took over a year alone as we handmade all the costumes, sets, props, miniatures etc…and editing and sound about another year! Now getting together to try it again with an animalist rock and roll movie loosely based on the Cramps story!
PKM: How’s the response been to your role as Sir Beauregard?
Chris Asimos: The movie definitely has a cult following so I have some amazing fans who have reached out and expressed their love for the character. It’s a wonderful feeling. I think some see Beau as a Gay Icon which is really cool but something I personally never expected to find myself doing. As an actor you just follow your opportunities and I’m open to all roles.
Look for Chris Asimos in the upcoming comedy web series, WELFARE and if you’re in Adelaide, be sure to check out Chris in the Australian Shakespeare Company production of The Wind In The Willows at the Adelaide Botanic Garden from Sept. 29th to October 14th before Hollywood steals him away!
PKM: How did you get Kitten Natividad, King Khan, El Vez, and The Mummies onboard?
Josh Collins: Actually it was pretty easy to get them involved as I had been working with them in various live events for many years. We had the Mummies touring Australia, so used an ancient amulet to force them to work on the movie. Kitten is an absolute doll and also open to many forms of bribery, she is amazing to work with, and did a cracking live show when she was down under as well.
El Vez again is just such an amazing performer, he literally can’t stop; it was just a question of directorial nudge techniques, mainly below the belt line, to get his double parts together!
King Khan is unstoppable, and luckily some irresistible blackmail material came into my hands, and he could not say no. Incidentally in the film King Khan’s role is played by three body doubles and a dummy and the amazing wonders of the screen of green. He is also an old comrade in crime from way back which helped a lot. What an actor though!
PKM: Can you tell me about your character, Hijra, and how you got working with Josh Collins on FITFL?
King Khan: I have known Josh Collins for a very long time, almost 20 years, I played his Wild Weekend festivals a few times and he contacted me and told me about the film and that he had written a part especially for me. I was truly honored, especially when I found out that it involved an Indian eunuch assassin whose penis had been turned into a magical golden dildo and was coveted by all the most ridiculous bandits. I actually got Josh to send one of my golden cocks to Cynthia Plastercaster and she was very pleased.
THE KING KHAN & BBQ SHOW – Illuminations:
HIJRA SONG – Fags in the Fast Lane:
PKM: And was there any prep work for this role?
King Khan: Yes, but very little, they plaster casted my head, which was fun, we actually filmed everything in one day.
PKM: Can you tell me a little about your experience making FITFL?
King Khan: It was a blast, Josh is a man of vision. He knew exactly how to inspire me. Actually it’s hard not to have a great time when you are surrounded by go-go dancers and golden cocks.
PKM: Did I also read somewhere that you will have copies of FITFL available for purchase at your upcoming North American shows?
King Khan: Yes, I will be selling the DVDs at all the King Khan & The Shrines gigs on our tour coming up, here are all the dates:
10/09 New Orleans, LA One Eyed Jacks
10/10 Houston, TX White Oak Hall
10/11 Austin, TX Barracuda
10/13 Phoenix, AZ Valley Bar
10/14 Lake Perris, CA Desert Daze Festival
10/15 San Diego, CA Belly Up Tavern
10/17 San Francisco, CA Great American Music Hall
10/19 Portland, OR Star Theater
10/20 Seattle, WA Clock-Out Lounge
10/21 Vancouver, CAN Rickshaw Theater
Packed with campy performances, outrageously bad special effects, fabulously tacky costumes (courtesy of costume designer/stylist Barbara “Blaze” Collins), and a dizzying array of technicolor freaks and phalluses, Fags in the Fast Lane has tickled audiences from Brunswick to Berlin and US screenings have recently sprung up in NYC, San Diego, San Francisco, and right here in good ol’ Portland where I was lucky enough to score tickets to its premiere at the Clinton Street Theater.
PKM: Are there any plans to tour Fags in the Fast Lane in the US/North America?
Josh Collins: I’ve had a few showings in the US but a tour would be great. I can screen the film with all sorts of live pranks involving percussion, balloons, and lots of white silly string!
PKM: Any plans for a Freakytown theme park?
Josh Collins: I started the Zombie Zoo theme park in Western Australia, now there is a story! But it all ended with death threats and get out of town demonstrations against it! I felt very privileged to have been the victim of my own brand of Macarthyism and would leap at the chance to outrage some more country bumpkins.
Zombie Zoo Attacked By Nimblest Locals:
PKM: Wow, those people were really freaked out! Did you expect any resistance from the locals, going into it?
Josh Collins: No I was innocent as a babe and didn’t realize the pure hate we would get from people who don’t want any kind of change at all to happen. I just thought this is so fabulous who could not want it? Everyone in Wanneroo apparently! Even the ex-mayor was threatening to shoot us! I do love the bit where the woman says, “My husband will die if this goes ahead” My one consolation is we sold the place to the Mormons to build a retirement home and they got just as much flack as us!
Josh Collins: Yes we are just remastering it, mixing the sound and giving it a proper grade. It’s looking beautiful! As soon as that’s done we will get it out there. Vimeo is great it provides all us independent off the wall, filthy-minded punk filmmakers a chance to stream our films. One thing for sure you will never see films like ‘Fags In The Fast Lane’ or ‘Pervirella’ on Netshitz.
Josh Collins: Also a work in progress. It has funk, disco, music hall, surf, sea shanties, sitar odysseys, Bollywood Rock n Roll, psychedelia, and brass band!
Bands featured are Sugar Fed Leopards, The Seven Ups, The Fifths (great local Indian Pop band), The Mummies, The Tandoori Knights/King Khan, El Vez, The Men from Spectre (Switzerland with tracks on Acid Jazz), local crooner comedian Oliver Clark and Raul Sanchez of Magic Dirt did all the excellent incidental/theme music. Obviously very eclectic but very interesting!
PKM: So, the LuWow bar is gone then? Bummer! But, you and your wife (and FITFL Costume Creator/Stylist), Barbara Blaze are hosting LuWow pop-up parties, this year? Can you tell me a little bit more?
Josh Collins: We have some awesome parties lined up soon, a creature feature Halloween ‘Zombie Zoo’ night in Melbourne next month, and a ‘Wild Weekend GoGo lounge’ at ‘The Funtastic Dracula Carnival’ in Spain in November. We started doing club nights back in the late 80s and haven’t stopped! We are reviving our festival from the noughties The Wild Weekend which will take place in Mallorca next year. With The Ogres, Tandoori Knights, The Go-Devils and much more. We have really high production levels and turn our festivals/nights into elaborate B-Movies totally transcending the usual gig/festival genre.