Jay Giannone is best known as one of the original crew members of Mark Wahlberg’s entourage which inspired the creation of HBO’s hit Entourage. Leonardo DiCaprio sought him out to be his creative directive for Martin Scorsese’s Departed. There are many facets to Jay as he is also a director, writer and producer. He is staying busy with multiple TV and film projects.He stars in ThePenitent Thief produced by Miles Media. Cobalt is the international distribution company and vertical entertainment is the North American distributor. Release VOD is December 22. The film also stars Hercules Kevin Sorbo, Stelio Savante, James Russo to name a few. I recently spoke with Jay about all his upcoming projects and how he’s staying sane during this pandemic. Here’s our conversation.
L’Etage: You have a film, The Penitent Thief coming out this month. What is it about?
Jay: The film is about two bothers but it focuses on my character who is the big brother named Dismas. Dismas and his brother died on the cross next to Jesus. It’s a serious film and a period piece.
L’Etage: Who is Dimas and what is his journey?
Jay: Dismas is a marauder, taken in with his brother by a group of killers, after their mother is killed. They grow up and end up on the wrong path.
L’Etage: How did you connect with this character?
Jay: I felt like this role was written for me. I could relate to it so much considering my turbulent upbringing. Growing up in South Boston and in the housing projects wasn’t easy, so I feel my true life experiences attributed to the role of Dismas. The script is an adaptation from the book ‘The Penitent Thief’ written by Don Willis who also wrote the movie script. He’s an amazing writer and it was a pleasure to work with him.
L’Etage: How do you want the audience to feel after seeing this film?
Jay: I’d like the audience to feel entertained and to understand that nobody is perfect. Sometimes in life choices are made for us and there is no way out but with God you can adapt to any circumstance.
L’Etage: Where can we see this film?
Jay: The film is being distributed by Vertical Entertainment and can be seen on demand and iTunes. I’m sure other platforms will have it available too.
L’Etage: Are you allowed to share about your pilot?
Jay: It’s a pilot that I will be filming in January. I’m set to play detective Idris Jones.
L’Etage: What are the projects you are working on?
Jay: I just finished a project with Michael Jai White Gillian White Mickey Rourke and Mile Hatton called Take Back and it comes out soon. It’s about human trafficking.
Also have Lansky coming out, it stars Harvey Keitel and Sam Worthington with Minka Kelly and more. Another notable project is Summer Someday with Greg Finley Kirk Fox and will be out spring 2021. Another project with Elijah Wood and Jason Yee set for the Chinese market and North American market coming soon. And bunch more too.
L’Etage: How are you coping with this pandemic?
Jay: I’ve been writing a lot and spending time with family. I’ve also got in really good shape. Considering I have the time to now.
L’Etage: How is it being on set in Covid times?
Jay: It’s been challenging. Some of my projects got pushed but Take Back was filmed here in California, the producers and director Christian Sesma did a fantastic job of keeping everyone safe and getting the film shot.
L’Etage: How do your fans connect with you?
Jay: Twitter and Instagram @jaygiannone
L’Etage: Anything else you want your fans to know?
Jay: I am working hard and developing a couple of projects that I wrote so stay tuned but I will be announcing which films are set to come out on my social media so stay tuned.