FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH guitarist Jason Hook has teamed up with documentary filmmaker Fran Strine and music manager Jamie Talbot to chronicle the story of world-renowned musicians who are not household names, but are instead the session and backup musicians who have performed at concerts and on countless recordings with huge stars yet remain largely unknown to the public.
The film, called "Hired Gun", goes behind the scenes and explores the personalities and creativity of the best session players and backup musicians in the world, ranging from pianist/harpist Corky Hale, who has played with Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra, to rock guitarist John 5 who has played with Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson.
A synopsis of the film described these musicians as "a group that possesses uncommon musical ability and an uncanny knack for being able to deliver a great performance time and again."
Hook himself came out of that world before joining FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH, doing stints with Mandy Moore, Hilary Duff, MÖTLEY CRÜE singer Vince Neil and Alice Cooper.
Asked by 15-year-old radio host Miles "The Shoe" Schuman if being a part of a band like FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH is a different experience from serving as a "hired gun," Hook said: "Oh, yeah. Well, look… Here's the thing… My desire was to be an artist. I've always written songs, I've always been creative, and that's the one thing that's really missing in that [hired-gun] field. You're just basically supposed to learn songs and play songs and go on tour, but on the creative side, there's really zero need for your input. It always kind of bummed me out, so I wanted to get out of it. And with DEATH PUNCH, of course… When I came into DEATH PUNCH, I was, like, 'I wanna be on the creative team.' That's all I really wanted. I didn't really care about money, I didn't care about anything like that. I just wanted to be able to write songs and make records."
Hook told The Pulse Of Radio he understands what it takes to catch a break with a big artist. "I went through years of trying to get gigs myself, and so I really understand what it's like to be the guy reaching out," he said. "And I always admired people that gave me a shot, recognizing that it's an unknown, you don't know if it's… The referrals are easy, when somebody says, 'I've got the perfect guy,' that door has been opened. But for you to open your own doors is very difficult."
"Hired Gun" features interviews with Hook, Cooper, Jason Newsted (METALLICA), Aaron Lewis (STAIND), Richard Patrick (FILTER), former OZZY OSBOURNE bassist Rudy Sarzo, KISS drummer Eric Singer, John 5, CHICKENFOOT drummer Kenny Aronoff, WHITESNAKE guitarist Steve Vai and others.
Strine, who made films about STAIND, Dolly Parton and others, launched an Indiegogo campaign to fully finance the movie.