Your new movie Late
Night Double Feature - in a few words, what is it about?
Jen - Late
Night Double Feature
follows the hijinks
of TV host Dr. Nasty and his sidekick Nurse Nasty as things get crazy on
and off screen during their late night horror show.
Double Feature is about a "horror host"-show - is that
something that's at all appealing to you?
Kelly - As a long time insomniac I grew up watching
late night television. Except for Elvira, which was in syndication, there
weren't too many shows like Dr. Nasty in my neck of the woods but I did
love watching this local station called City TV that would have late great
movies with an announcer that would slag the bad movies that were coming
Overall though the inspiration was many of the
Amicus anthology films [Amicus
history - click here] like Torture
Garden, Asylum and the original
Tales from the Crypt. What I loved about the
Amicus films is that they had
strong wraparound concepts that tied all the stories together. So Late Night
Double Feature was
really done in that type of spirit.
were your sources of inspiration when dreaming up the movie's concept, and
since it's partly a look behind the scenes of horror filmmaking, is any of
this based on personal experience?
Kelly - Well certainly the speech the intern
character says about how to make it as actress was making fun of people I
see on Facebook of wannabe actors doing crazy stuff. When you see an
actress in your newsfeed posing like a cat drinking milk from a saucer -
thinking this will expand their acting career. You really can't make this
More than it being about filmmakers all three
stories do have a common theme of someone having an ethical crisis in the
workplace. Samantha in the wraparound story is dealing with what you have
to do to make it in the film business. In Dinner For Monsters, our chef is
dealing with an ethical crisis of cooking a human, and Brad in the Slit
segment is taking advantage of people living on the fringe of life to pay
for his unique cutting business. So for a "B-movie" there is
more going on in this film if you peel it back a little.
So how did the
project fall together in the first place?
- Originally we were doing a different anthology film called Tales from
Hell (which we still plan on making) but that got put on hold at the time
and my plan was to do a series of different types of anthologies and this
was going to be the second film. I had a few concepts kicking around in my
head and I happened to mention this idea to our other co-producer R.X.
Zammit in a coffee shop one day and then by the end of tea we had rough
story that I could make into a script for the wraparound. Once we had that
figured out then I approached Torin Langen [Torin
Langen interview - click here] and Zachary Ramelan to see if they had any ideas
for the films within a film and they pitched us some ideas. Once we had
that figured out, we were up and running.
featurettes shown within the framework of your Late
Night Double Feature - were they produced especially for the
movie, and if so, how much control did you have over them, what was your
collaboration with their directors Zachary Ramelan and Torin Langen like?
Kelly - Production-wise we were just as involved
with the two featurettes as the wraparound. I didn't write Slit at all but
I ended up co-writing the screenplay for Dinner for Monsters with Zach and
Raven Cousens. Our approach to producing is very hands-on and we consider
ourselves creative producers, not just the business side. Having said
that, we are always trying to make sure that it is the director's vision is
on screen. From the feedback we have received from the three directors,
they are happy with the results and each of the segments have their
Despite being the same age and coming from the same
town, they are both very different types of filmmakers. Torin tends to
work more like Hitchcock and have every scene storyboarded out ahead of
time and Zach tends to think on his feet more on set and work more on
instinct. Both are quality good but that difference in approach gave
diversity to each of the segments.
Jen - The fun thing about working with three
different directors was that we really ended up taking a different
approach with each of the stories. Each of them had their little
quirks and ways of doing things, so our roles really varied depending on
you tell us about the director of your main/framing story Navin
Ramaswaran, and what made him perfect for the job?
Kelly - I had previously worked with Navin on my
previous film I wrote and produced called One More for the Road. The film
did very well playing quite a few festivals and even winning a few awards.
So there was no question that I wanted to work with him again. Navin works
both in horror and in dramatic films which is a good mix for my scripts
because I try to write stuff that is very character driven and Navin has a
knack for working well with that type of material.
Jen – I agree with Kelly. Navin was our
first and only choice to direct for the wraparound. We knew we needed
someone with his level of experience to tackle this segment and keep the
story cohesive despite frequent interruptions (as tends to happen on cable
TV). His approach to the segment and the way he handled the humour was
perfect and we couldn’t have had a more fun time collaborating with him.
was the collaboration between the two of you like during the making of
Night Double Feature - and how did you two even meet to begin
Jen – I met Kelly at the Blood in the Snow
Canadian Film Festival in November 2012. He doesn’t remember
things this way but I basically hounded him to let me help on One More for
the Road. I was successful in landing a gig as the coffee girl! I
had a total blast that weekend working with Kelly, R.X. Zammit (our other
producer), Navin, and many of the faces we brought back to work on Late
Night Double Feature.
When Kelly asked me to come on as a co-producer I couldn’t say no.
Kelly - This was really Jen's first major project
she had worked on so it was a bit of film school for her but it was great to
see her blossom into a very good producer over the course of the
production. What is amazing about working with Jen (and R.X.) is that
we are all really good friends and hang out all the time outside of our
working relationship so that makes it fun too. I can't wait for
us to work on our next film together.
Do talk about your cast, and why exactly these
Jen - We had the most amazing cast! With three full
segments and a bunch of other content we had a lot of roles to fill. We had some surprising moments where we originally brought in an actor to
audition for one role and they ended up being a better fit for a different
roll for a completely different segment. We even had one situation where
two of the directors ended up duking it out because they both wanted the
same actor. In the end I think we got the perfect cast for all of the roles, they were all a riot to work with.
Kelly - Some of the roles were written specifically
for certain people in mind and others we got them through auditions. When
I was writing the script for the wraparound I had Mike Donis (Shawn) and
Jason Tannis (Orson) in mind. Navin and I knew about Jamie Sampson
(Samantha/Nurse Nasty) and Brian Carleton (John/Dr Nasty) through a web
series called Pete Winning and the Pirates. In Slit, Torin and I wanted
Caleigh Le Grand (Brii) for sure without even having to audition her. The
Brad role took a few auditions but Colin Price was perfect for it. Same
thing goes for Dinner For Monsters. Zach had seen Nick Smyth's (Chef) work
previously and is a very gifted comedic actor. Jeff Sinasac (Vincent) and
Sandra DaCosta (Carmen) [Sandra
DaCosta interview - click here] I had both worked with before on other projects
and were a dream to work with as usual.
What can you tell us about the shoot as such,
and the on-set atmosphere?
Jen - Any film maker will tell you there is never
enough time or enough money, and we had a REALLY ambitious script, so it
was really important to find a crew that worked well together.
Luckily we found all the right people and it really ended up being a
family atmosphere. Everyone pitched in for anything that was needed,
including letting us kill them for a beautiful massacre scene (they’re
all fine now!).
Kelly - The interesting thing about shooting this
type of feature is that it felt more like shooting a series of shorts
because we shot each segment seperately over a 3 month period. It was only
when we got into the complicated post production phase where it really
began to feel like regular feature film again.
A few words about audience
and critical reception of your movie so far?
- It has been a huge relief getting the great notices we have had so far.
I'm sure we'll get a few bad reviews eventually but so far the critical
response has been very positive. As I do this interview, we have just
played the film once at the New York City Horror Film Festival so far, but
the response there was really amazing.
projects you'd like to share?
Kelly - I have three projects in script development
right now, an anthology series called Tales from Hell that I have been
developing for a few years, a sequel to Late
Night Double Feature and
another project tentatively called Producer's Cut, but it is still in its
Jen – We don’t know yet exactly which of the
projects will end up being the next one, but you can be sure to see us
What got you into
filmmaking in the first place, and did you receive any formal training on
Kelly - My formal training in film is actually in classical animation, then later 3D
animation. How I got into live action
filmmaking was really just in the past few years. Between being a film
writer for publications like Fangoria and being the festival director for
the Blood in the Snow Canadian Film Festival, I guess I was just inspired
by what was around me and next thing I knew I was producing and writing
Jen – I kind of fell into it. I had no prior
experience before working on One More for the Road, but once I was on that
set I knew this was the place for me. I took the Producers
Foundation course with Raindance later that year, but for the most part I
learned by doing, and learning from our fellow Canadian filmmakers who
have been a fountain of knowledge and inspiration.
What can you tell us about your filmwork
prior to Late
Night Double Feature?
Kelly - As I mentioned somewhat before I wrote and
produced the film One More for the Road, but my filmography is still pretty
Jen – There will be plenty more to come. You
haven’t seen the last of us yet.
Kelly and Jen
producers, actors, whoever else who inspire you?
- Truly the hardest question ever, but some of my favorites tend to be
anything by Kubrick, Kurosawa and Hitchcock. I'm also a huge Mario Bava
fan [Mario Bava bio - click here]
and his Black Sabbath anthology film was a huge influence on
Night Double Feature.
Kelly - For horror, The
Shining, Day of the
the original Halloween are my top films. Overall I am pretty old school, I
AIP and the classic
Jen – I’m a big fan of movies which explore the
darker side of humanity. Films like Requiem for a Dream, American
Beauty, and Fight Club are among my favorites.
... and of course, films you really
Kelly - I have zero interest in horror flicks with
no "voice". Not really into shock for shock value, if you are
going to make a film have something to say.
Jen – I don’t think there is any such thing as a
really terrible film. Even the worst film can become great fun if
you go in with the right attitude.
Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
Kelly - you can find out about our
team's projects at
our Twitter is
and our Facebook group
Anything else you are dying to mention and I have
merely forgotten to ask?
Kelly - I think one thing worth mentioning is that
there are some interesting crossovers of team members in different
segments. I directed the Night Clown faux trailer, our actor Jason Tannis
who plays Orson in the wraparound directed the faux commercial called Killer
Mortgage Rates. Jen composed some brief music pieces for the film
and our other producer R.X. Zammit sings the closing theme song. And the
list goes on and on.... but I'll save that for the audio commentary!
Jen – There are a ton of easter eggs in the film
for anyone who is paying attention.
Thanks for the interview!