Syndicate: A New Beginning in Film for Local Teens


Film Director Jack Veo, 17, and Co-Director Jack Ricca, 17, inside the technology booth at Hopkinton Center for the Arts, Hopkinton, Massachusetts for local movie premiere. (Image by MHS Sophomore Connor Wong. Date 2023 January 27.)

It is more often than not that teenagers are asked to ponder the question: “What is it that I want to pursue after high school?” For five teens, however, this answer came fairly easy.

It was the Summer of ‘22 when Syndicate came to life. Jack Veo and Andrew DiGiando developed a movie concept that was the beginning of a new era for DVR Productions—short for DiGiando, Veo, and Ricca. In the span of five days, the script was finished, as a courtesy of the writer DiGiando, and over the course of seven months, a full, two-hour movie was made. After proposing the idea to fellow Co-Director Jack Ricca, who immediately fell in love with the idea, the wheels were set in motion and the result was something none of them ever anticipated. 

“I thought it was going to be 45 minutes, [but] it ended up being way longer than that. [It] took me around a month to edit the whole thing,” said Jack Veo, director and editor of Syndicate, who also noted that it was a very tense editing process. “We didn’t expect for it to be this long. We added a lot of shots in and it just ended up being as long as it was.” 

The boys found a passion for filmmaking early on. Shortly after creating several low-budget, inexpensive short films, it didn’t take much for the boys to decide on making a meaningful, yet sentimental movie they were proud of. It was then that they became inspired to create an even bigger project. Thus, Syndicate was born. A film that tells the story of a young, New York City detective trying to bring down the mafia ties between two mob families, the Italians and the Irish, in the face of the city’s corrupt streets. 

With a cast of over twenty people, five producers, and more than a dozen families and friends anticipating the film, the industry of filmmaking was a bit stunned. The movie gained popularity rather quickly and was sent to New York City to be reviewed. 

On January 27th, Syndicate premiered at the Hopkinton Center for the Arts. Here, the movie premiere featured a red carpet event for cast members prior to the occasion. Photographer and Milford High Sophomore Connor Wong captured the honorary night. 

The five Syndicate producers, from left to right–Liam Blackwell, Andrew DiGiando, Jack Veo, Jack Ricca, and Mack Enright–together on stage inside the Hopkinton Center for the Arts minutes before presenting their speeches at the movie premiere. (Photo by Connor Wong. Date 2023 January 27.)

The producers opened the night with memorable speeches highlighting the key components alongside the cast and crew that grounded the film into its making.

“It was a project no one really knew what they were getting themselves into, but you did it anyways, and all of you, all of you really pulled your weight to make this freaking awesome,” Producer Mack Enright, and former graduate of the Class of 2022, announced during his speech. “After high school up until college, I wondered ‘What am I going to do with myself?’ and Andrew really answered that, so when he asked me to play the Godfather, of course, I said yes. I mean, how can I say no to this guy?”

The movie poster for Syndicate. (Original photo and art design by Producer and Artist Mack Enright. Date 2022 September 4.)

Even so, to their surprise, local broadcast personnel of FM radio station, Ray Auger, attended the premiere finding it, and the film, to be inspirational. Expecting the movie to be a short film, Auger was left bewildered and shocked by its production and plot twists. Ultimately, the night left Auger in awe of the five producers and fellow cast members.

Following its premiere, the film was brought into the public eye. In a local interview with the producers, Ray commented about his thoughts on the movie and his reaction to the excessive foul language: 

“I was like ‘Oh, wow!’ and then I had to remember that you guys are a bunch of high school kids.”


After countless hours of filming, rescheduling, and recasting, ideas came to life and filming became more than just mere camerawork; it became about family.

“The biggest thing I learned about filmmaking is it can bring a lot of good people together,” noted Screenwriter Andrew DiGiando. “I was really connected to the cast by the end of it. They were such an amazing group of people to work with. It brought a lot of [us] together after COVID and helped form new friendships.” 


For more information:

  • Listen to MyFm Radio for a local interview with DVR Productions