At age 40, we may sense that under Ray Shoesmith’s inscrutable surface he’s having something of a midlife crisis. His daughter, Brittany, is growing up, there are tensions with his ex-wife, he’s been court-ordered to attend anger management classes with a “bunch of wife bashers and child beaters,” and work stress sometimes leads him to need pills to sleep through the night. Besides all this, the world seems full of assholes strategically placed to antagonize Ray, and who need to be taught that they can’t get away with disrespecting him. “In jail, there’s consequences. You disrespect somebody, you can end up dead,” observes Ray, but in the outside world, this so rarely happens. Hence, Ray takes it upon himself, increasingly as the series goes on, to be that consequence.
Played by Scott Ryan
Scott Ryan wrote, directed, produced, edited and starred in The Magician, a mockumentary shot in 10 days on a $3000 budget that introduced audiences to the very funny and very dark world of hitman Ray Shoesmith.
After a screening of a 30-minute cut-down version at the 2004 St Kilda Film Festival, Ryan met filmmaker Nash Edgerton, who took the project on as editor and producer. Receiving further funding, the film was then released by Hopscotch Films in 2005 and went on to be nominated for a Film Critics Circle of Australia Award and an Inside Film (IF) Award in 2005.
Ryan penned the FX Series Mr Inbetween, a further exploration of “Ray Shoesmith,” again playing the character with Edgerton now directing. He is developing a project that delves into the John F. Kennedy assassination.