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Posted by landfallprods in Purple Mind.
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Catherine Johnson was nearly as enthusiastic about a role in “Purple Mind” as Will Shepherd.  Once I was sure “Cat” was my choice for the role of MARY, she pitched in like a real trooper, from helping work out menu plans to feed cast and crew for the three weeks we’d be shooting out at the Imperial Stock Ranch thirty miles outside of Maupin, Oregon (pop. 400), to suggesting a number of actors whose work she was familiar with – actors like Corey Brunish, who would eventually sign on to play the pivotal role of Sheriff Dylan.

When Corey first came over to the house, I thought I was sitting down with a young Harrison Ford.  Corey has the same, great, down to earth presence, a friendly smile and stands about 6 foot 4.  Corey spoke about his acting work in the same way as many name actors I’ve met are prone to do – with a genuine sense of modesty, not interested in talking about themselves, but preferring to discuss examples of good work and life experience which elicit clear pictures of their range and understanding.  It was clear to me that Corey had a strong affinity for the role of Sheriff Dylan, a small town lawman who has empathy and understanding for people and their difficulties to a greater degree than he does for following the letter of the law.

It’s important to note that if our story had been written to take place in an urban locale, it is likely that Roy Matthews would have run into a police officer who would shoot first and ask questions later – the kind of police officer who has helped far too many desperate folks commit “suicide by cop.”  But so far, everyone was responding well to the idea of a sheriff named after a folk singing legend more interested in understanding a vet suffering from PTSD than in judging him for no longer “fitting in.”

Corey did well as an Oregon real estate developer.  Well enough to have invested himself in his true love as an actor.  Portland’s Brunish Theatre is named after Corey and he occasionally turns up as a guest star on television shows like TNT’s “Leverage.”  A singer as well as an actor, Corey has performed with The Oregon Symphony and the Portland Opera and is also one of the co-producers of the current musical version of “Bonnie & Clyde” off-Broadway.

Here’s Corey with Stephen White the day he wrapped his role as Sheriff Dylan on “Purple Mind.”


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