Loners” is a new movie from Loners Productions who has partnered with Indie Rights. “Loners” is a hilarious spoof on today’s political climate and the modern government's inability to outright address the violence in the news. The film asks for answers to two of life's greatest questions: firstly, how to avoid the government and, secondly, how to make friends.

A biting satire set in the very near future, “Loners” follows an ensemble of eccentric loners who are forced to endure a government-mandated group therapy class called "Lone-Anon" as part of the "War on Loneliness," a misguided initiative to stem the growing tide of American violence.

Led by an ineffectual therapist whose exercises become increasingly comical, the loners are thrust into a government conspiracy to justify its failing program. In order to avoid being the latest introverts abducted by mysterious operatives, the group will have to do what terrifies them the most: stand up for their right to be alone, together!

“Loners” premiered in Los Angeles at the Ahrya Fine Arts by Laemmle on May 30, followed by a weeklong run at the Laemmle Music Hall beginning May 31. The movie premiered on Amazon VOD May 31st and rolls out to other platforms in the coming weeks.

Recently, director Eryc Tramonn granted an exclusive interview where he discussed this film and more.

The movie industry, characters, and film shoots

Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you get into the movie industry and how did you first get involved with “Loners”?

Eryc Tramonn (ET): I first became interested in filmmaking before I even understood that there was a movie industry. My great aunt had a Super 8 camera, and like many filmmakers, I became enthralled with the mechanism of filmmaking at a really early age.

After exploring transportation design at the Art Center College of Design, and briefly considering a career in medicine, I opted to attend the University of Southern California’s Cinematic Arts program. There I met my classmate and friend Tyson Turrou. Tyson chose to pursue a career in acting, which ultimately lead to a role in the play Lone-Anon.

While performing in the play, Tyson contacted me and asked if I might be interested in directing a feature-length version of what they had constructed for the stage.

MM: What was it about the plot and characters that drew you to the story that this movie was telling?

ET: I felt that the story was extremely relevant given the fact that most people are isolated behind their devices in contemporary times. In many ways, I felt that this exploration of character was not only timely but also necessary. Although the story was designed long before our current political administration, the story and characterizations have proven eerily prescient. You hear filmmaker say this often, but it's truly like we almost had a crystal ball.

I really like the fact that the story communicates ideas rather than simply looking to achieve a visceral response

MM: Have you ever known people like those presented in the film and, if so, did that influence anything about the portrayals or film shoot?

ET: In many ways, the characters portrayed in the film are a lot like all of us. And the idea of examining the difference between being “alone” and being “lonely” was intriguing. Many of us grapple with some level of fear surrounding aloneness or being lonely, but they are not one and the same. In the very least, I have always felt filmmaking should attempt to explore character as a means to gain a deeper understanding of self. In the best cases, cinema is jointly cathartic and sympathetic to the human condition… which is what makes any piece of cinema powerful.

Settings, favorite scene, and other projects

MM: How much does this near-future setting resemble our own world now?

ET: Unfortunately, mass shootings in acts of domestic terrorism do not seem to be abating. The situation highlighted within the film has proven to be eerily accurate, although when we first began the film, we all felt it was largely farcical satire. Now, I am sure people will falsely assume “Loners” is a direct commentary on current political administration choices; however, in actuality, the story was designed long before any of the current figures took office. So, I feel it will be really interesting to see how people ultimately respond.

MM: What's your favorite scene from "Loners" and why do you like it so much?

ET: My favorite scene in “Loners” is probably the climax. And the reason for this is because it was one of the most challenging scenes to cover. Years of experience and preparation helped to ensure I remained creative rather than panicked. With a detailed shot list and rough timing, this pedantic approach freed me to improvisation whenever it proved necessary. And watching the entirety of my talented cast was really fun. Notables Stephen Tobolowksy (Silicon Valley, Groundhog Day) and Khary Payton (Teen Titans Go!, The Walking Dead) each gave outstanding and really fun performances. It was pretty cool to see everyone bring such professionalism to such a small, indie project.

MM: What was the most exciting and/or memorable thing about filming “Loners”?

ET: The speed at which I needed to operate. In many ways, I viewed the experience as a giant learning opportunity to help improve efficiency on future projects. I have continued to study and examine progressive assembly techniques to ensure self-sufficiency for upcoming projects. At one point, we captured between 42 and 45 setups in a single day and principal photography was completed in 12.5 days. There was also a pretty cool sense of accomplishment surrounding the very final moment upon wrap. In many ways, I felt like I made good on the promises I made to myself ages ago.

MM: What has the process of finding distribution for this movie been like?

ET: The process was actually a lot smoother than we first expected it would be.

We ended up entertaining deals from several distribution companies for “Loners” and we put all of the offers into a matrix to examine the pros and cons of each against one another. We ultimately chose Indie Rights because they presented the best terms, had consistently positive reviews from other filmmakers and also had the most transparent business practices surrounding revenue models.

MM: What other projects are you working on now that you would like featured in this article?

ET: My goal since leaving the University of Southern California has been to construct a lithe, and highly efficient production company capable of telling the oft-overlooked stories of underrepresented populations, and from those vantage points.

With that stated, the key has been self-sufficiency. As such, I am in the process of completing my first novel, which outlines my approach toward all aspects of the independent cinema production process, and the commercial aspects surrounding it. In the end, the book is a game plan for myself, but I know that many of the struggles I have encountered are not unique to me. So, with any luck, others may find useful in my experience, and I wanted to lay out my thoughts in a living document that could serve as a blueprint. Overall, the book is intended to act as a general guide to the process of content creation in the present-future.

Longtime friends have also challenged me, director Andre Ovredal (Autopsy of Jane Doe, Scary Stories) and screenwriter Norman Lesperance (Mortal), to complete a proof-of-concept in the horror/fantasy realm.

So, my team is currently in pre-production for that project and planning to capture in July. I am in the process of designing a really cool previz workflow that is tuned to independent production, and that will likely exist at the core of my films moving forward.

If that weren’t enough, I am also a principal owner/pilot in Antera Drones, a commercial drone operation that supplies service to other productions and beyond. We live in an age of diversification, but I have tried to ensure additional skill sets would always reinforce the primary objective.