by Christopher Annino
Looking back, now a successful Hollywood screenwriter Jason Filardi, has fond memories of his hometown of Mystic. “I loved growing up in Mystic – such a great place to raise a family, it was like a Norman Rockwell painting, my parents were really supportive of me. I look forward to coming home for visits,” said Jason.
Throughout his life he enjoyed reading and seeing films such as original “Star Wars” which he saw seven times the first year it was out. It wasn’t until he went to Cutler Middle School where English teachers Andrea Ackerman and Terry Purcell creatively stimulated him. “Mr. Purcell would always make class interesting by incorporating acting with the text. It was there where I started enjoying to write short stories and become more aware to what I was interested in.”
When his brother, also a famed screenwriter, Peter Filardi went out to Hollywood and became a success with the film “Flat Liners,” Jason realized what he wanted to do with his life and he moved to Los Angeles. At first he struggled with finding an agent and getting his scripts out to producers. While in Los Angeles, he had an acting debut as a medic on his brother Peter’s film “The Craft.”
By never giving in, Jason achieved success with writing scripts for films “Bringing Down the House,” “Drum,” and recently “17 Again” with Zach Efron and Matthew Perry.
Many agree that both brothers are in comparison to the Farelly brothers of Rhode Island in regards to their combined accomplishments. “It’s funny, we sometimes never step back and look and see what we accomplished but its an honor to be compared with them.” Jason later added, “The secrete to our success is persistence and hard work. Also in regards to making a career in show business know that going in you are not guaranteed anything. LA has a great way of weeding out the weak, even if you have connections, you still need to have the talent to prove you’re worthy.”
Jason Filardi is coming back home to present the annual Cutler Middle School Student Academy Awards on June 15th at the Olde Mistick Village Art Cinemas.