Aside from having written numerous reviews for this side, Dale Pierce
is also a horror writer, a writer of non-fiction books on (horror) films,
bullfighting, wrestling and Wild West characters, plus he is a wrestling
manager. On top of all that, one of his books, Bullring, is now turned
into a film, Museo Taurino, in which he also plays a (rather important)
part - though according to his own account, that didn't come all that
Dale musing amidst bullfight memorabilia
1. One of your books, Bullring, has been turned
into a film, Museo Taurino, quite recently. Could you tell us what it is
The original concept for Bullring is quite
different from Museo Taurino. Bullring is a series of Twilight
Zone-ish episodes surrounding a cursed bullring. Everyone who
scoffs at the bullring and it's being a place of bad shadows ends
up with an encoutner with the supernatural. In the book, a bullfighter's
ghost is doomed to wander the earth, tyring to stop others from being
killed, only to fail each time. A corrupt bullfight critic listens to an
old LP record and each song in homage to a famous matador, transports him
not only through time but into the body of the matador that song is about.
A corrupt evangelist tries to do an exorcism in the bullring, only to die
in the end. Things like that.
Information on the book may be found at http://www.myspace.com/carbonellbullring
Museo Taurino, which means Bullfight Museum in
Spanish, is from this book as well. It is a story of revenge. In the text
an old man and woman seek revenge for their son who was killed in the
ring, striking back against the promoter, the manager and others. In the
film version, the main villain, Don Guillermo Monclova, is alone as the
killer. It is a low budget film, so don't expect anything on par with
Dario Argento, but it has its moments ...
2. How much were you involved in the making of the film
(apart from acting), and does Museo Taurino differ vastly from your
original book ?
Originally, I was not going to be very invovled at all, as I do not
understand screenplay writing. It is an entirely different style than
books. I was not going to be invovled at all, except providing technical
data as the bullfight itself is far more detailed than outsiders think.
I was also going to provide the bullfight films out of my archives and
that was it. I told them to take the book and do whatever they wanted as
far as a screenplay went, as long as I approved it at the end. You see,
Jeff Stoll, the producer, has been a longtime horror fan who goes
to all these conventions and such. He is also a professional still
photographer. I guess he saw everyone else in the midwest starting
their own companies and figured he would do it too. He bought the
equipment and set out to do a lifelong ambition, I guess. I knew him
because he had bought and read all my horror books, so when he started a
company, I figured it would help out to let him do one of my stories.
Hey, just because it is an indy project does not mean it will be doomed
to failure. Look at the Blair Witch
Project, right? This guy may be the
next Troma or something , as he has a load of projects
As for the book and the film, there are vast differences and I expected
this. In some cases the changes in the story were an improvement, I
think. In the book, Don Guillermo is accompanied by his wife in his
crimes and in his campaign for vengeance. In the book, the wife lives,
but in the film she commits suicide after her son is killed by a bull,
leaving Guillermo as the grieving husband/father alone. This makes him
go all the more insane. The film deals with his growing crazier and
crazier, as he talks to himself, sees ghosts, has visions of bullfights
in his head and just gets freakier as things go along. As he plots to
lead on, trap and kill his next victim, the writer, Carlos Sanchez, one
wonders if he will even be able to pass off as sane long enough to do
the murder. In the end he does, but with a change again - instead of
using a sword on his victim, as in the text , he uses a pair of mounted
bull horns ...
This doesn't bother me much. I mean, all films get changed a lot when
they go from book to film version. I cannot think of one film that
directly followed a book, ever. The Phantom Of The
Opera, Carrie, Dracula,
Frankenstein, The Invisible
The Pit & The
Pendulum. On and on.
Dale making a kill in Museo Taurino
3. You also ended up playing a character in the
film. Could you tell us a bit about your character, and how did your acting debut come about ?
I ended up doing the lead role. I am not an actor. This was not my debut
as I also played a small part as a bartender in a 1998 film shot in
Apache Junction, Arizona, called A Gunfight In Tombstone, but I am
no actor. I keep telling people this and even though a lot of people have
been captivated by the role, I keep telling them it is not what I
to do. The thing is, "No, Goddamn it, no," I keep telling them
and they keep saying "Yes, yes, yes." Now I have Stoll
wanting me to act in his other films and not just authorize the release
of my manuscripts for them, plus other people have wanted me to be a
nutcase in their films as well. I do not want to do it. I am a writer
and NOT a godamned actor. This was a fluke that was unintentional.
You see, the guy who was cast as the elad showed up drunk at a
rehearsal and it just happened to be when I was there. Not being a nice
person and having a low tolerancy rate for stupidity, I told Stoll and
Marvin, the guy who did the screenplay to get rid of this son of a
bitch, give me the goddamned script and we would shoot it with me
instead. It wasn't that hard because even though I did not do the
script, I created this character and the story.
This also led for a lot of add-libbing and changes for the film, as we
did actual shooting. A lot of the original text from the book and also
the script version got shot in the ass, but in the end I think it
worked out well enough. It could have been a lot worse and I must
emphasize again, I am not an actor. The whole change of events could
have led to disaster but it did not.
4. Is there any website
for the film ?
Yes, at http://www.myspace.com/museotaurino
and there in the friends section you can find Jeff Stoll (the producer/director),
Luke Menapace (Carlos Sanchez in the film - click
here to read an interview with Luke Menapace), and the Blue
Kat Boneyard (production company).
5. Museo Taurino was produced in Ohio. Could you
tell us a little about the independent film scene in Ohio as such, and do
you have any favourite Ohio-filmed movies ?
Ohio is within
a day's drive to Chicago, Pissburgh, New York City, Detroit and several
other places where indy a d horror film fests are held, so there is a load
of opportunity for an Ohio-based film maker to get their films seen in a
ton of places. Because of this, Ohio has a lot of film-makers at the indy
level. The area is a good location for them. As far as favorites, I try to
avoid making a statement like that because after all, I also cover horror
films on the net and in magazines. I want to stay as neutral as I can.
Aside from a built-in bias for Blue
Kat Boneyard and Stoll, for
obvious reasons, there are some others. Gwendolyn Kyste [click
here to read an aricle on Gwendolyn] is another area
film-maker and I like her films, not so much for the film content, but
because she looks like a vampire and this amuses me. She has gotten a lot
of press in Ohio, but is better known as a fashion designer for really
weird looking clothes.
6. You are also
writing a new novel now, Christian, can you tell us what this one's about
I am not writing this novel. It was written long ago and shelved because
due to the content, I could get no one to handle it. Now, however,
thanks to ebooks and books on demand printing, I am going to make a run
of this in 2007 and then go for foreign reprint rights. The delay is
finding someone to take 350 doublespaced manuscript pages and convert
them to a disk for me. I have a few possibilities now. I do not want to
do it myself because working on the book once was enough for me. The
character is too uncanny and too frustrating to deal with again. I wrote
Christian in only three weeks and it was a long three weeks for
me, back in 1991. I then shelved it and let it set there, but now the
time is right. When it comes out it will read like a confession.
The story is told in first person, from the killer's view. You know he
is a murderer and you know how he kills, but the grabber is wondering
how he got to be so screwed up and why he kills as he does. He is an
atheistic Christian-hater, so logically he would kill Christians, right
He kills sinful people by cutting their throats with a
razor and sticking a fish sticker on their heads, plus a bible tract in
their mouths. He poses as a religious fanatic because in his deranged
mind, he will so ofend thinking people that they will turn from
christianity, due to the antics of this one lunatic killing supposedly for God. He figures by his actions he will
destroy christianity from within. Insane reasoning, but that is what I love about writing about nutcases. You can take somehting
make it believable.
The odd thing is he never gives his real name and is never fully
described, so he remains this shadowy boogeyman to the readers, who
could be anyone. He notes the press has dubbed him The Fanatic, but
insists he be called Nobody. He hates mirrors with a passion,
suffers weird flashbacks and insists he is not insane, but clever. His
constant bragging about himself and his refusing to admit to having any
psychological problem is the very evidence he is totally off his rocker.
I took this from real life nut cases. Truly insane people such as say Ed
Gein and The Nightstalker, became offended if someone insisted they were
crazy, when all evidence pointed to the fact they were.
He is a unique villain and the scary thing is, though he is not heroic,
I believe there will be people actually liking him or even hoping he
does not get caught.
Dale taking a break
7. You also promote this novel on MySpace, right ?
Yes. There is a MySpace page for the book at http://www.myspace.com/christianthehorrornovel
and also a page run by The Fanatic so you can get an idea of what the
book and his style at http://www.myspace.com/killingforgod
as well. The funny part is some people are legitimately freaked out over
this page. So think what they will be like whenever I do put the book
In the Fanatic's MySpace he is writing in modern times and
about going to work"again after years without killing. He
plans to put out his story (i.e. the book) then go on the
run and begin killing again.
I am kind of hoping the bornagain bibletumpers will all protest it like
they did The Last Temptation of Christ and The Da Vinci Code and help it
8. Who do you think are your biggest influences as a writer ?
don't know. I really don't. I like some of Lovecraft's works and some of
Poe. I have always been more into film than into literature. I have been a
fan of Argento, Hitchcock , Rod Serling, Armando de Osorio, Bava, Leone,
Corbucci and the like. I even like Jacinto Molina (Paul Naschy). If
anything, film more than books would have been an influence on me.
Then there's another side of you I'm dead curious about. You also work as
a wrestling manager. Could you - for all those who are not familiar with
wrestling managers - describe what a wrestling manager does as opposed to
a regular manager ?
I hate to disappoint you, but I do not like talking about this too much
unless I am doing the role. When you interview Dale Pierce you get Dale
Pierce and when you interview the wrestling character, you get the
wrestling character. I do not intermingle them too much. I worked as Mad
Dog Marcial Bovee from 1979 to 1985 in the Southwestern USA, then as
Time Traveler from 1985 to 1998, when I quit, then from 2003 to the
present again. It is something I do on the side, pretty much in the
smaller leagues and nothing earthshattering. Like I said, this phase of
my life I do not talk about when I am doing interviews as myself. The
wrestling role is a character role and an extension of my own
personality, but one I keep as far apart from Dale Pierce as I can.
When I did the film, one of the people made the crack, "What do you
mean you never acted? You worked with that fakeassed wrestling for how
long?" What he didn't get is wrestling and acting in a film are two different things. I mean
10. How did you get involved with that
I started out as a magazine writer and photographer at the old Phoenix
Madison Square Garden in Arizona and figured I could do this as well as
anyone else up there. While I was big enough size wise, I didn't really
have the coordination or stamina for wrestling in the ring, though I have
had a number of matches over the years. Thus I stuck with doing the
manager role for the other villains. By working with wrestling on the
outside, with the programs, the photos and the magazine work, I was in
contact with the area wrestlers and had an in, so to speak, already. It
was easy to get into the profession.
Feeling lucky ?
Want to search for books by
The links below
will take you
just there !!!
11. Apart from all that you also write heaps of
articles on (horror) films, not only for this site but many other websites
and fanzines. What's your fascination with films and horror films in
Ever since I was a little kid, I loved horror films. I used to read Famous
Monsters Of Film Land all the time. I have always loved the horror
film genre. I don't know what the key fixation would be. I can't tell you
why I have liked this genre, but I always have. It's been so long since I
took a fancy to the industry I cannot remember exactly why. I just know I
12. Any films that came out lately you really
Among the newer films, I loved The Secret Window, Phonebooth
and Final Destination III.
13. ... and some you really despised ?
There are no
movies that I truly have hated. There are some I have watched once and
could care less if I ever see them again, but saying I hated them would be
unfair. I will admit I skipped the most recent King Kong, as I am
getting sick of the remake fever that has dominated Hollywood during the
past decade. I also skipped House Of Wax simply because Paris
Hilton is in it and I can't stand the bitch.
14. Your all-time favourite movies ?
Honestly, the irony of it is my three alltime favorite films are
Christmas films, not horror. The Gathering, National Lampoon's
Christmas Vacation and A Cristmas Story, As far as horror films
go, there are many. I don't want to list any as an absolute favorite
though, but there are many I never get tired of seeing - Suspiria,
Deep Red, Horror
Rises From the Tomb, Silence of the Lambs, the old Universal
horror cycle and Hammer
horror series, The Howling, Frenzy, The
Tombs Of The Blind Dead, The Legend Of Hell House, and on
and on. Two of my favorites are two lesser known ones, Tourist Trap
with Chuck Conners and an obscure made-for-TV vampire film called I,
Desire. I also love The
Haunted Palace, Re-Animator
and many more.
Other all time favorites would be the Spaghetti westerns of
old, by Leone, Corbucci, Ignacio Iquino, and
the like. One of my favorites was and still is an obscure Italian western
from 1966 called Johnny Yuma. I was able to find a DVD version of
it for only $1.00 on the net a while ago.
15. Your favourite directors ?
Favorite directors ?
Hmm, there are many. Incredibly, though we are different as night and day
philosophically, I favor the Christian up in Canada, Andre Van Heerden [click
here to read an aritcle on André Van Heerden] (Deceived,
Judgment, etc). Others: Fulci, Bava, Corbucci, Leone, Ossorio, Carpenter,
Hitchcock, Argento, the list could go on and on. I even like some of the
Ed Wood pictures [Ed Wood bio -
And of course, your personal all-time worst movies/directors ?
I don't want to go with absolutes. As far as worst goes, there have been
some really crappy indy films and also some really crappy Mexican films I
have seen over the years. I do not know who directed it, but one of the
ones that was pretty bad, that comes in the so-bad-it's-good-category
would be Santo & Blue Demon vs The Monsters [editor's note:
it was directed by Gilberto Martínez Solares in 1970].
What are your future projects, and what do we have to look out for by Dale
Pierce in the near future ?
I have quite a few new books
planned for ebook and books on demand printing being worked on now, plus a
number of low budget horror films through some of the people I know so
there should be quite a bit of new material out soon.
18. Anything else I forgot to ask ?
My other books are as follows:
The Wind Blows Death (western horror): http://www.myspace.com/thewindblowsdeath
Riot At the Garden (wrestling at the old Phoenix Madison Square
Wild West Characters (western history) at http://www.goldenwestpublishers.com
Death rides The Horns (an ebook on death in the bullring, great
facts but the guy who did it did some horrible retyping, he is supposed
to have fixed this) http://DeathRidesTheHorns.com
Order Museo Taurino
Order The Monster
Within at http://www.CustomFlix.com/223799
for the interview, and good luck with your books, your films, wrestling and
whatever else there is ...