The week of October 18, 2010, someone identifying himself as Chris M. Ferguson of Death King Cinema posted "casting calls" for Burke, "a short film based on the best-selling series by Andrew Vachss." On October 21, we discovered the posts on Casting360.com, ActorsPages.org, and NewCastings.com. The postings were 100% bogus. Andrew Vachss never authorized such a film.
The copyright to the Burke novels belongs to Andrew Vachss. And Mr. Vachss did not authorize this "copyrighted" screenplay that purports to adapt Flood. The "author" of that screenplay has acknowledged he has no right, title, or interest in Flood, and has asked that his copyright submission be deleted ASAP.
So who is Chris M. Ferguson and what is his intent? We don't know, but we would rather err on the side of caution. There are humans who use people's desires and needs to victimize them. That's nothing new—it's hardly a creation of the Web. But the Web can be a tool to help predators. And like every other tool, it can also be used for good.
The first thing we did was put out the word—through Facebook, GoodReads, Twitter, and The Zero. We warned that anyone showing up to "try out" for this "film" could be putting themselves in danger.
The next thing we did was contact the sites carrying the fake "casting calls." Casting360.com responded immediately to our phone call, taking down the listing and promising to alert anyone who had contacted the "producer" through their site. ActorsPage.org and NewCastings.com—both owned by the same company—don't offer any phone numbers; we sent them an email through their contact page, and received back automated confirmation that they had our email and would be in touch within 48 hours. They did that, and within a few days, they, too, took down the listings.
We are aware that acting is a rough business to break into, but please do not fall for this scam—not for this particular "casting call," and not ever for any "casting call." If you're ever in doubt about this kind of unsubstantiated listing, go back and read " 'Cyber-Chumps' are Net's big victims."