James Cucek and Darrin Riga, two actors who live with autism, celebrate the red-carpet screening on Oct. 12 of Outbound, a sci-fi movie from Abbotsford filmmaker Brian Cucek. (Communitas photo: Angelika Dawson)

James Cucek and Darrin Riga, two actors who live with autism, celebrate the red-carpet screening on Oct. 12 of Outbound, a sci-fi movie from Abbotsford filmmaker Brian Cucek. (Communitas photo: Angelika Dawson)

Screening held for film featuring actors with diverse abilities

Outbound made by Abbotsford filmmaker Brian Cucek

Almost 300 people attended the recent screening of Outbound, a feature film starring actors of all abilities and made by Abbotsford filmmaker Brian Cucek.

The screening was hosted Oct. 12 at SilverCity Mission Cinemas by Communitas Supportive Care Society.

The film debut was so popular that a second screening was hastily arranged by the staff at SilverCity so that those who couldn’t get a seat in the first theatre were able to see it immediately after the first show.

“We didn’t know what to expect but we were totally blown away by the attendance,” Cucek said.

The red carpet event before the show was popular with actors, family members and friends taking their turn walking down the carpet and posing in front of the movie poster.

“Paparazzi” (staff from Communitas) had fun taking photos during the event, making everyone feel special.

Before the film had its first screening, Cucek addressed the crowd, introducing his brother James, as well as Darrin Riga.

James acted in the film and also wrote the original song for the credits, while Riga played a starring role. Both men live with autism.

The 30-minute sci-fi film was shot at various locations throughout the Fraser Valley as well as on green screen.

“It was really neat to see myself on the big screen,” Riga said.

Karyn Santiago, chief executive officer for Communitas, was moved by the attendance and by the enthusiasm of all who came, and was appreciative of the staff at SilverCity who accommodated the need for a second screening.

She was also impressed by the quality and inclusiveness of the film.

“Seeing actors of all abilities working together to make this story come alive was just amazing,” Santiago said. “It was a perfect way to celebrate Community Inclusion Month.”

Outbound is one of several films created by Cucek and featuring actors of all abilities.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to do this. It brings together the two things I love to do: make films and work with people who have special needs,” Cucek said.

Outbound is now available for public viewing on YouTube. It can be found by searching “Community Inclusion Film Group.”

READ MORE: Local filmmaker to screen sci-fi film starring special needs actors

READ MORE: Original film stars actors with diverse abilities