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An Interview with Alex Mathieson, Director of The Jitterman

by Mike Haberfelner

March 2016

Films directed by Alex Mathieson on (re)Search my Trash


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Your upcoming movie The Jitterman - in a few words, what is it about?


The Jitterman is about how fear can control you. Set in a suburban house over one night, a babysitter is tormented by the titular character. I canít really say more than that but itís a unrelenting series of shocks and twists. That should be a real thrill to watch.


What were your inspirations for writing The Jitterman?


It definitely fits in with the slasher/home invasion genre of horror, but it was also inspired by the great horror icons Michael / Freddy. I wanted to see if I could make my own character that could get inside your head.


Do talk about the titular character, the Jitterman himself for a bit: What kind of creature is he, how will he be achieved?


Iíve been developing the Jittermanís backstory for a while now. Heís a malevolent spirit, hell-bent on destroying the lives of his victims, but thereís a richer backstory of tragedy where it all stems from. The Jitterman acts out of vengeance. He wants the world to know his name!

The Jitterman himself is human in form but has a cool/grotesque disfigurement which will be achieved with practical effects. Itís a symbol of the things he endured in life and the reason for his fury.


You also promise quite some effects work for The Jitterman - care to elaborate?


It was more correcting the mistakes we made on The Tour. Iíve always been a fan of practical effects, and when we went into making The Tour we planned on keeping the FX 100% practical. We spent a load on the retractable knifes and fake blood but no one on the team had the right experience to do it all. When we were shooting Cassieís death scene it was about 2am on the last day of shooting in Wymering Manor and it was freezing. The blood was too thick to squirt and we couldnít get the gusher we both hoped for. So we had to do it in post.

It has always annoyed me so on this project, so Iíve invested in a proper make up and FX specialist.

The Jitterman will have gushers for sure but also the character requires some delicious prosthetic work, to make him hideously disfigured. So Iím hoping to have more toys to play with this time round. To put it simply it wont be anything like a Herschell Gordon Lewis film [Herschell Gordon Lewis bio - click here], but it does have its moments.


What can you tell us about your movie's approach to horror (as in suspense vs sudden shocks, atmosphere vs all-out gore and the like)?


The Jitterman is more of an atmospheric horror film than a gore film. Whilst developing the script I was really impressed by Joel Edgertonís The Gift. It was brilliant at creating a chilling atmosphere and framing negative space. It kept the audience on edge the whole time.

I really want it to have a sustained sense of impending doom.

In horror I love the tease and the build up more than the act itself. The imagination is a powerful thing.


Your movie's currently still in its fundraising stages - so what can you tell us about your campaign?


Once the budget's in place, what's the schedule - and any idea yet when and where the film might be released onto the general public (though I know it's probably waaay too early to ask)?


Weíre shooting at the end of April and hoping to hit the summer festivals. I work as a promo director where project led times are short and turnaround is fast. In my opinion every project has an energy, a well of enthusiasm it feeds off if you will. So for me Iím aiming to turn it around as fast as I can.


Any future projects beyond The Jitterman?


I have a short Iím desperate to do called The Dying of the Light, about the Devil.

Then we have Darkmoor, then a feature version of The Tour written, which Iím convinced would be an incredible watch and really unexpected. Think Kill List on steroids!

Iím also working on a TV series, which is a horror comedy cross between The Inbetweeners and the classic 80s film Monster Squad. ďWolfmanís Got Nards!Ē -

And even a script outline for the Jitterman feature if anyone likes the short.

But it is all about making these short films to prove to people Iím a gamble worth taking.

I donít want these stories to stay on the page but Iím realistic enough to know that they only way thatís going to happen is if I show enough drive and God willing talent for someone to take a chance on me.


Your/your movie's website, Facebook, IndieGoGo, whatever else?


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Please check out The Jittermanís IndieGoGo and Facebook page and help us raise the final £3000 to get this project made.


Anything else you are dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?


Since doing The Tour the one thing thatís really blown me away is the support of the horror community. Itís been so great to see the film and shared it around the festivals, but the good will toward the genre never diminishes.

Iím just proud to be a part of it.


Thanks for the interview!


© by Mike Haberfelner

Legal note: (re)Search my Trash cannot
and shall not be held responsible for
content of sites from a third party.

Thanks for watching !!!



Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD