“Making Bones” warmly received by fans at the movie’s premiere

Joey Ambrosini, left, is interviewed by Sharon Martinez at the premiere of his movie, "Making Bones".

Music played as the final credits for “Making Bones” rolled on the big screen TV mounted to the wall of the party room inside Monroe Social and members of the audience rose from their seats in a standing ovation for the independent movie makers during the premiere Friday night.

Joey Ambrosini, a Monroe native who wrote the screenplay, directed and acted in the movie, soaked in the moment with co-stars Randy Borruso and Tony Spera.

“Like I said, guys, you guys are all my people tonight,” Ambrosini said. “Bringing this into Monroe, it’s been like no other. Honestly, I could not have done it without everybody’s support here. Um … I don’t like getting emotional. I don’t like being emotional, but …”

“Let it go,” one man’s voice could be hear over the crowd, as Ambrosini took a long pause.

His proud mother, Michele, who watched her son celebrate during the premiere, saw his journey from day one.

“I’m not shocked, because as a baby I always thought he was destined for greatness,” she said. “No matter the obstacles, he always pursued his dreams and he always reached for the stars. It’s just a whirlwind for him. He deserves it.”

Michele Ambrosini remembers when her son made videos on an iPad when he was just a toddler. Then one day when Joey was age seven or eight, she heard the voice of Teddy Long, manager of the WWE, coming from his bedroom and found her son interviewing him remotely.

Ambrosini went on to be part of 22 projects, including movies like “Alarmed”, “Johnny & Clyde” and “Damon’s Revenge”, shows, music videos and shorts — and two more movies are in the works.

Spera, son-in-law of the famed Monroe ghost hunters Ed and Lorraine Warren and a paranormal researcher himself, starred in Ambrosini’s movie “The Jackpot Hit” and came up with the idea for “Making Bones”, in which Ambrosini wrote the screenplay.

The movie is about a mob soldier’s emotional turmoil after being assigned to kill his younger cousin to “make his bones” in the Mafia. “Making Bones” will be streamable on LateFlix this summer.

Borruso stars as Dickie DiCenzo, who is ordered by mob boss, Carmine DeLuca (Spera), to whack his cousin, Tommy DiCenzo, played by Ambrosini.

Most of the movie was shot in Monroe with key scenes at Monroe Social.

“This is everything to me, obviously,” Ambrosini said after the first screening Friday. “This is my night, sharing it with Monroe. It’s a blessing.”

On the red carpet

Joey Ambrosini, left, with James Dutkowsky.

Cast members and fans posed for photos on the red carpet with a “Making Bones” backdrop outside Monroe Social Friday evening, while Sharon Martinez, of Monroe, microphone in hand, interviewed cast members and high profile guests off to the side.

“I play a degenerate gambler,” said Chris Baldyga, who was part of the gathering. “I get stuffed in the trunk after they shoot me. The makeup showing the wound in my head was really realistic.”

It is a busy weekend for Baldyga, who also starred in “The Jackpot Hit”. This Saturday, he is going to compete in an East Coast Professional Wrestling match at Sacred Heart University under his character name, The Iron Eagle.

His friend Adriana Medina plays as Tracy the bartender in “Making Bones”. “I was in ‘The Jackpot Hit’. I played Maria,” Medina said of a previous film with Ambrosini.

Lexia Hayden, 16, a Masuk High School junior, appears as Isabella, 21, in a bar scene in “Making Bones”. Her character slaps a guy who bothers her friend.

Sharon Martinez interviews Alexia Hayden.

“It was great. It was fun and exciting,” Hayden said of working with the rest of the cast. “I got to talk to everyone.”

Glenn Mate, a retired Monroe deputy fire marshal, played the role of Frankie, a member of DeLuca’s crew. He brought his daughter, Genna, 14, to the premier. “Making Bones” was his first time working with Ambrosini. Mate appeared in two other movies that are now in production.

“This is a hobby and I never knew I’d enjoy it as much as I do now,” Mate said of acting.

Of “Making Bones” he said, “I love it. It is such a super production and I think people will appreciate the end product and how it came out.”

Mate’s daughter also caught the acting bug. She appears in the opening scene of “Candlewood” a horror movie now in theaters in New Milford.

Elisabeth Medaris and her son, Ed, of Monroe appear as extras in “Making Bones” and Ed’s burgundy 2017 Dodge Challenger is used in the film.

First Selectman Terry Rooney and his wife, Nadine, were among the invited guests at Friday’s premiere.

First Selectman Terry Rooney is interviewed by Sharon Martinez at Friday’s premiere at Monroe Social.

“I wouldn’t miss it,” Rooney said while being interviewed by Martinez. “Monroe is a very quiet town and I always feel like we need a little more excitement, and this is more excitement, so I’m happy to see it.”

At a table nearby, donations were collected for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and there was a drawing for prizes, including one free boxing class with Connecticut Boxing Hall of Famer and former NABF Heavyweight Champion Tony “TNT” Grano.

Steve Dutkowsky volunteered at the table. His sons went to school with Ambrosini and Dutkowsky brought one of them, James, a Masuk senior, to the premier.

“Joey wanted James to have a special night,” Dutkowsky said. “It’s fantastic. You want to see people pursue their dreams, especially people you knew growing up. He looks so happy.”

After everyone watched the movie, Ambrosini thanked all involved, including Constantin Crama, owner of Monroe Social, who allowed them to shoot scenes inside his restaurant at 494 Main St. and to have the premiere there.

Guests were treated to live music by Kali Taino and Louie P. and Ambrosini and Borruso led a question and answer period in the bar area.

Ambrosini was asked what his future holds. He said he will not be making another movie on his own for a while and will instead focus more on his acting. But when he does create something again, Ambrosini said it will be in Monroe, Connecticut.

“This entire town has been really close to my heart,” he said. “We’re definitely going to do something more successful. It’s all uphill from here. It’s going to keep on getting way bigger and bigger as we go along.”

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