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Armorer Uses Live Ammo on Set of WW2 drama, REVEILLE



Mike Burch, the talented armorer behind the upcoming World War II drama REVEILLE, has made waves in the film industry by using live ammunition to create a more authentic experience on set. While this decision might seem controversial given the recent and heartbreaking incident on the set of RUST, the use of live ammo was done in a completely safe manner under strict safety protocols and supervision from Burch, and wardrobe advisors Brian McCallion and Samuel Niles.


Written and directed by Michael Akkerman, REVEILLE takes place in 1943 when an American squad engages in a skirmish with German soldiers along the Winter Line in central Italy. As artillery shells begin to rain down, the Americans must honor the rules of war and protect their wounded prisoners. Huddled together in a cave and made to see the enemy as human, the soldiers wrestle with unimaginable moral questions that lie outside the boundaries of nationality and allegiance.


"Michael Akkerman and I had many discussions about whether to use blanks or live rounds on set to convey the realism. There were many questions, rightfully so, but in the end, the actors gave consent and were comfortable using live ammunition for certain shots," says Burch. "When 'cut' was called, each actor was approached individually and other than putting the safety on, was instructed not to move until the firearm was cleared by myself, Brian, and Samuel. It was honestly a little nerve-wracking, but everyone worked flawlessly together in making sure the firearms were cleared by at least three people before the actors arose from the ground. Safety was our number one concern, and we were able to accomplish that by following the basic rules of firearm handling."


Inspired by true events, REVEILLE captures a historically accurate depiction of WWII. In conjunction with Myra Miller PhD of Footstep Researchers, Michael Akkerman used archival documents and interviewed family members of soldiers who had survived the second world war. Resulting in a gripping drama that takes audiences on a visceral journey where nationality and allegiance blur and the rules of war are tested like never before.


REVEILLE will be available on Digital and VOD beginning Friday, August 4th.

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