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By "Big John" Bierly

When “Highlander: Endgame” explodes into a theater near you on September 1, there’s no doubt that the attention of every Highlander fan will be focused on what might be the most attractive cast ever assembled for a feature film. “Endgame” will kick ass and make some hearts flutter in the process.

But there’s more to a movie than its onscreen faces. For every slash of Connor MacLeod’s katana to every tear that rolls down Duncan MacLeod’s timeless face, there’s a talented group of men and women behind the scenes who make it all happen on camera. They are the film’s crew, and the “Endgame” crew boasts one of the most impressive filmographies the genre has ever seen.

It starts at the top with Doug Aarniokoski, the film’s director. Though “Endgame” marks Doug’s directorial debut, he’s worked with some of the most talented and cutting-edge helmers in Hollywood. Doug was first assistant director for Robert Rodriguez on “The Faculty,” “From Dusk Till Dawn,” and “Four Rooms,” where he also worked with Quentin Tarantino. Another foray into the genre came with his first assistant director duties on Tim Pope’s “The Crow: City of Angels.” Doug performed the same role for Terry Gilliam on “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” Gilliam is best known for bizarre, quirky fare like “Brazil,” “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” “Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life,” “Twelve Monkeys,” “The Adventures of Baron Munchausen,” and “Time Bandits.” He’s worked with the best.

Doug was Jay Roach’s first assistant director for “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery.” The next time you watch “Austin Powers,” listen closely as Dr. Evil talks to one of his henchmen on the phone. The unintelligible voice on the other end of the conversation? That’s Doug.

Having worked with such a talented and varied group of directors, Doug brings a lot of experience and enthusiasm to “Endgame.” And he’s got another director to work with who knows a little about Highlander, whose name is Adrian Paul.

Joel Soisson wrote the film’s screenplay from a story by Gillian Horvath and Bill Panzer. Joel’s other scripts include “The Prophecy III: The Ascent” and the 1992 thriller “Lower Level” starring Highlander’s own Elizabeth Gracen. Future writing projects for Joel include “Wes Craven’s Dracula 2000” and “Mimic 2,” both for Dimension Films. Joel’s producer credits include “Dracula 2000,” “The Prophecy II,” and “The Prophecy.”

The film’s cinematographer, Doug Milsome, was a camera operator on “Highlander I.” In addition to “Endgame,” his credits as a cinematographer include the upcoming “Dungeons and Dragons” (which also stars Bruce Payne), Kurt Russell’s “Breakdown,” the Madonna sizzler “Body of Evidence,” “Full Metal Jacket,” the original “Lonesome Dove” television miniseries, and the Kevin Costner epic “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.”

The special effects team’s work has been featured in some of the biggest and most popular films of all time. Nick Allder has done special effects work on “The Empire Strikes Back,” “Braveheart,” “Alien,” “Legend,” “The Princess Bride,” “The Jewel of the Nile,” “The Fifth Element,” “The Professional,” and “Conan the Barbarian.”

Jeff Clifford’s special effects can be seen in “Gladiator,” “Saving Private Ryan,” “The Peacemaker,” and “Full Metal Jacket.”

Garth Inns has worked on “Highlander I,” “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade,” “The Peacemaker,” “Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein,” “Enemy Mine,” “D.A.R.Y.L.,” “The Jewel of the Nile,” “Legend,” “Amadeus,” “Superman II,” “Superman III,” “Flash Gordon,” “An American Werewolf in London,” “2001: A Space Odyssey,” “The Dirty Dozen,” “The Guns of Navarone,” and the Bond flicks “Goldfinger,” “Thunderball,” “You Only Live Twice,” “The Living Daylights,” “GoldenEye,” and “Tomorrow Never Dies.”

Teddy Schubert was on the special effects teams for “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade,” “The Princess Bride,” “Legend,” “Krull,” and “Superman.”

Editor Chris Blunden did optical effects for “Highlander I” and his other editing credits include genre sleepers like “Bean,” “The Adventures of Baron Munchausen,” and “Hackers.” He was also an assistant sound editor for “Aliens.”

Production designer Jonathan Scott Carlson is no stranger to Christopher Lambert films, having performed production designer duties on Lambert’s “Beowulf,” “The Road Killers,” and the original “Mortal Kombat” film. He was also production designer for 1997’s “That Darn Cat” update and the “Profiler” television series on NBC.

Production assistant William Dodds will go from “Endgame” to “The Mummy 2,” the sequel to the 1999 Brendan Fraser hit. He previously served as set production assistant on the 1999 Sean Connery/Catherine Zeta Jones thriller “Entrapment.”

Production coordinator Norma Marie Mascia recently performed the same duty on “U-571.”

With talent like that in front of and behind the camera, Highlander fans can rest assured that "Endgame" will rock in more ways than one!

Director -

Doug Aarniokoski


Screen Play -

Joel Soisson


Original Story -

-Gillian Horvath

-Bill Panzer


Cinematographer -

Doug Milsome


Special Effects Team

 -Nick Allder

-Jeff Clifford

-Garth Inns

-Teddy Schubert


Editor -

Chris Blunden


Production Design -

Jonathan Scott Carlson


Production Assistant

William Dodds


Production Coordinator -

Norma Marie Mascia

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