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An Interview with Jennifer Valdes, Director of Isabelle

by Mike Haberfelner

August 2014

Films directed by Jennifer Valdes on (re)Search my Trash


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


Isabelle is a romantic horror love story about a grieving husband who will stop at nothing to be reunited with his love again. He becomes so obsessed with Isabelle that he begins the downward spiral into madness...


What were your inspirations when writing Isabelle?


I was very inspired to make a modern black and white film after watching the film Frankenweenie. The story also inspired me. The lengths that the boy went to trying to resurrect his dog definitely influenced my main character Leon's development. Also the love story aspect and sheer creepiness of the character comes from my love of Edgar Allen Poe's work.


With your film being among other things about undying love - your thoughts on the topic?


I personally don't think love dies, it just transforms - for Leon, undying love becomes an obsession. Actually, he becomes very obsessed his love for Isabelle but also with her corpse and he has a morbid romance with her dead body...


How would you describe your film's approach to horror, and what can you tell us about the look and feel of Isabelle as such?


Isabelle is my attempt at stepping a little bit away from the horror genre in a way. Yes It's horror, but it's also romantic and dramatic. I think it is a classy, elegant, cross-over piece broadening the spectrum from horror to other genres...


Do talk about your key cast for a bit, and why exactly these people?


Bradley Brian Custer plays Leon - he had the perfect look and personality to play this odd character and he was brilliant! Mara Lee Gilbert plays Isabelle - I  had worked with her before on a project called Escape From Kings Park and I had a vision of her playing this part. She was amazing.

Other actors include Anthony Saint Thomas, Bettina Skye, Susan Adriensen [Susan Adriensen interview - click here] and Bradley Creanzo.


What can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?


The shoots were all amazing! We had 5 days of shooting. My crew and actors were phenomenal. Everyone kept a professional attitude and we all worked our butts off to get things done. The shoots moved along smoothly and efficiently thanks to my amazing AD Jeremiah Kipp [Jeremiah Kipp interview - click here] as well as the hard work of SOS Productions, Michael Zinn and Jeff and Meg Scott. Marissa Valdes also co- produced the film and I couldn't have done it without her expertise.


The $64-question of course, when and where will the movie be released onto the general public?


Isabelle will be screening September 12th 2014 9:30pm at Long Island's Blood and Babes Comic-Con. After that we will be entering film festivals.


Any future projects you'd like to share?


I am working on an anthology of films by female film directors. Isabelle was created to be released as part of this anthology called, Dawn of the Femmes. Right now we need funding to produce the final short in the series.


What got you into filmmaking in the first place, and did you receive any formal training on the subject?


I first got into filmmaking after studying Communications, TV/Film and AVID Editing at St. John's University. After that I produced my own public access TV show with my sister, Fallen Fayth. The show was called The All New Brain Eaters Show and it aired weekly on QPTV and BCAT for 8 years. It was a comedy/variety show with musical guests and band interviews.


What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Isabelle?


My first film is called Jack 'O' Slasher (2013). It's a hilarious horror/comedy film, about a pumpkin-headed demon from hell, who is killing people to trying to resurrect the devil. It has worldwide distribution and can be found online as well as in stores around NYC. After that I made a few short films. To Love is to Die was nominated for best music in the Macabre Faire Film Festival, and M is for Monotheist was produced for the ABCs of Death-contest. I also co-directed a feature film with Samuel Oswald Stone called Escape From Kings Park.


When it comes to filmmaking, you have pretty much done it all: Writing, directing, producing, editing, acting, ... - so which are your favourites, what could you do without?


Directing and editing are my favorites, I mostly do acting just for fun and I don't take myself as seriously when I am acting.


Your films never seem to stray too far from the horror genre - coincidence, or is horror a genre at all dear to you, and why (not)?


Horror is very dear to me but I am trying not to get locked into just one genre.


How would you describe yourself as a director?


l am hardworking and determined. I strive to reach my goals and share my vision with the audience. I see my films as a finished product before I start shooting them. I see my vision as a whole.


Filmmakers who inspire you?


Sam Raimi, Tim Burton, Quentin Tarantino, Robert Rodriguez.


Your favourite movies?


Feeling lucky ?
Want to
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?

The links below
will take you
just there!!!

Find Jennifer Valdes
at the amazons ...


Great Britain (a.k.a. the United Kingdom)

Germany (East AND West)

Looking for imports ?
Find Jennifer Valdes here ...

Your shop for all things Thai

Something naughty ?
(Must be over 18 to go there !)

x-rated  find Jennifer Valdes at

Jaws, Evil Dead, Beetlejuice, Killer Klowns from Outer Space.


... and of course, films you really deplore?


Remakes of perfectly good horror movies.


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


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 !!!



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



Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...


Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!


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Michael Haberfelner


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