Practical Special Effects
James Bett, Jr. is an independent producer and practical special effects artist originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Being a rabid fan of horror films since early childhood, Jim made it a point to begin learning the basics of special effects makeup as a young adult in hopes of breaking into the business. For a number of years Jim began to teach himself how to create particular effects with limited guidance or references other than the films he had in his possession. As he continued to develop as an artist, Jim began to research the medical field in hopes of creating the most realistic and visually stunning effects possible.
Luckily, his hard work and aspiration eventually paid off when Jim began applying his effects to a number of independent projects attributed through his time at various horror conventions throughout the Midwest. As a practical special effects makeup designer, Jim has worked on many independent film projects in the Chicago-Milwaukee markets such as Peek A Boo, Serial: Amoral Uprising and The Spade County Massacre. He has also provided special effects makeup and co-directed music videos for such acts as 2-West and R.A. the Rugged Man.
In late 2007, while searching for different guests to fill his first horror convention titled the Milwaukee County Massacre, Jim was introduced to a scriptwriter and graphic artist looking to break into the business through any means possible by the name of K.M. Jamison. After having a chance to view Jamison’s first short film the two began to discuss the possibility of working together with Jim supplying his effects towards Jamison’s various scripts that had been collecting dust. A few months later the two met and were able to produce their first short film in less than 24 hours which resulted with an immediate response from fans of the horror genre.
Thanks to Jim’s effects applied towards Jamison’s writing, the two were both able to gain recognition as aspiring independent filmmakers who were overly passionate about their craft despite the fact that they were unable to supply high dollar budgets for feature length productions. Jamison began to recieve various requests for more information on the film from industry connections while Jim was able to bring his true-to-life style of practical special effects into its true form. Less than one year later, Jamison and Bett began work on a feature film connected to the short they had done a year before titled “SERIAL: Amoral Uprising”.
Shortly following the release of SERIAL: Amoral Uprising, Jim was called back to a documentary project he had been working on with Rusty Robot Productions involving the development and popularity surrounding DeadPit.com where Jim played the part of a full time producer. During his time working on the documentary he was able to gain friendship from a number of well known industry contacts such as Uwe Boll, Tiffany Shepis, Kane Hodder, Lloyd Kaufman of Troma fame and Betsy Palmer. Upon the release of Into the Pit: The Shocking Story of Deadpit.com, Jim was called by the film’s investor William Zenobia to take part in an interview scheduled to take place on live television, allowing him to share his experience on a program titled “Directors Cut”.
In late 2010, it was announced by K.M. Jamison that Jim would be joining him as the vice-president of a new production company titled Black Eye Entertainment, appropriately named after their passion for DIY (do-it-yourself) independent film-making.