“The Hermit” was to be the cannibalistic pig farmer movie that catapulted Lou Ferrigno above the perpetual shadow of Arnold Schwarzenegger. There seems to be several issues working together to sabotage what could be Ferrigno’s greatest film.
By the way, I’ve written about this before but why does the word “Ferrigno” get highlighted as an unrecognizable word in WordPress’ spellcheck? Take, for example, this paragraph. There is no correction of “Schwarzenegger”. However, “Ferrigno” gets a red underline indicating that WordPress doesn’t recognize the word Ferrigno. Let’s try “Strydom”, as in Gary Strydom. Nope, no red underline. How about “Platz”? Nope, no underline. What level of notoriety does Ferrigno have to get for WordPress to recognize his last name? See the screencap below to see what I’m experiencing “behind the scenes” when I type “Ferrigno”.
“The Hermit” started filming in August in Syracuse, New York. It’s been synopsized as a horror movie starring Lou Ferrigno as a cannibalistic murderous pig farmer who cooks his victims and sells their flesh as jerky.
According to key grip Mac Cushing, most of the film crew hadn’t been paid through the first week of filming. Halfway through the second week, the producers then said that the crew would be paid bi-weekly, even though that the original agreement was a weekly payment. The crew responded by saying that they’d walk out if they weren’t paid by the following Monday or Tuesday.
According to Syracuse.com:
Producer Gerry Pass blamed the threat on “rumors from union reps” about proof of deposit; “The Hermit” is a non-union film, he said. On Tuesday, Aug. 30, the crew still hadn’t been paid, according to Cushing, so they walked off the set. Filming stopped. Ferrigno and others went home. Pass, line producer Kenneth Greenblat, and the Syracuse Film Office confirmed that production was shut down after the crew went on strike.Syracuse.com
Apparently, an investor promised $200,000 and only came up with $20,000. Producer Pass claims to have contributed $150,000 himself but it didn’t prevent the walk off. Mac Cushing says he’s still owed $4000 and he estimates that tens of thousands are owed to others in the crew of 60.
The crew seems to be a unhealthy mess. According to the producer, lead actress Malina Weissman somehow got super glue in her eye requiring microscopic knife repair and eyelashes were lost. Weissman “wasn’t able to film scenes for five days due to the injury”. Cinematographer David Wolfgang also went to the hospital but for a non-superglue related gallbladder surgery.
The producer is raising more funds in order to finish filming in the “fourth quarter of 2022”. Of course, winter scenes involving unexpected snow, or other winter issues, could create continuity problems with the existing Autumn footage, unless they reshoot the whole movie.
The question needs to be asked, does Lou Ferrigno have a spare several hundred grand that he’d be willing to risk in order to get his pig movie realized? How about Ferrigno giving Arnold a call? $200,000’s got to be chump change to Schwarzenegger. What would Arnold do if he were filming an underfunded pig movie that the crew walked out on. Would Schwarzenegger dip into his pockets? Maybe Ferrigno’s net worth is lower than we realize. Schwarzenegger allegedly helped out arch enemy Mike Mentzer when Mentzer was down on his luck. How about helping Louie?