Filmmaker Spotlight: Jeff Tomsic, NHFF Alum & Director of Tag
We first met director and producer Jeff Tomsic when we featured his short film, I’m Having a Difficult Time Killing My Parents, at our 2011 New Hampshire Film Festival — that year he was also a part of our first-ever comedy panel along with T.J. Miller and Tommy Chong.
“I have a very special place in my heart for the New Hampshire Film Festival. It’s such a beautiful, supportive community, and it’s been so fun to watch it grow. As soon as I set foot in Portsmouth and met everyone from NHFF, I felt like I was home,” Tomsic said.
His short film won our Best Short Comedy Award in 2011 and was also an official selection at the Sundance Film Festival earlier that year. Now, seven years later, Tomsic’s film Tag is in theatres and is already being considered a summer hit.
With a resume that includes producer and director for cult comedy TV favorites like Broad City, The Detour, and Idiotsitter, Tomsic is no stranger to a non-traditional plot. In I’m Having a Difficult Time Killing My Parents, T.J. Miller plays an unemployed 32-year-old who still lives at home with his parents, who are played by T.J.’s actual parents J. Kent Miller and Leslie Miller. T.J.’s character has vivid fantasies of killing his parents, hence the straightforward title.
When it came to directing the movie Tag, Tomsic was originally hesitant. “A movie called Tag just [didn’t] seem like the greatest idea ever.” (The Jam) But once he gave it a chance, he realized it’s actually a hilarious story about true friendship. Tag is based on a true story of 10 friends who have been playing tag once a year since high school to keep in contact — a wholesome idea that translates into comedy gold.
The film has an all-star cast including Ed Helms, Jon Hamm, Jake Johnson, Rashida Jones, and Jeremy Renner. Renner actually broke a wrist and an elbow on the third day of filming, but fortunately, the bad luck didn’t continue. The Wall Street Journal reviewed the film saying, “For all its repetitiveness and frantic silliness — the impurity of its absurdity — Tag ends up being good fun, with an unexpectedly sweet spirit that stays with you.”
We hope to see Tomsic come back and visit us at another New Hampshire Film Festival soon. In the meantime, stay tuned to our blog to find out the attendees of this year’s festival. You never know if the next big director will be featuring their first film!
Tag is in theaters now and you can watch I’m Having a Difficult Time Killing My Parents here.
Image courtesy of IMDB.