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An Interview with Kyle Chappell, Producer of Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us

by Mike Haberfelner

August 2015

Films produced by Kyle Chappell on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your new movie Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us - in a few words, what is it about?

 

Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us is a blood-soaked, adventure, comedy that follows four high school graduates as they steal a car and go to extremes in a tale of insanity to avoid getting caught.

 

How did the project fall together in the first place, and what drew you do it?

 

Lari Teräs [Lari Teräs interview - click here] contacted me a year after we met on set saying he won an award for his feature film script and a grant for some equipment. He had $14,000 of his own money to put into the film. I was a little hesitant at first but he sent me the script and I laughed out loud when reading it so I agreed to produce it.

 

What were the main challenges when producing Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us?

 

Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us is an ambitious script to pull off for such a slim budget. 22 locations shot across 8 cities, lots of blood splatter, gunfights, several scenes with a big cast on set, 18 days to shoot it and a maximum of 4 months to plan everything from scratch. Expecting everything to work properly when you’re relying on donations is unreasonable so we had to strategize alternatives to as many situations we could think of. You can’t predict everything so some problems had to be dealt with as they came up so we had to think creatively. In the end we shot the script Lari wrote with no compromises.

 

Do talk about your director Lari Teräs [Lari Teräs interview - click here] for a bit, and what was your collaboration like? And how did the two of you first meet even?

 

Lari and I first met on the set of an independent feature film and a year later he asked me to produce Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us. He has become a good friend of mine since then. We work well together and had talked in the beginning how a good producer/director relationship can positively affect the crew. Lari and I have great communication and a mutual understanding when it comes to filmmaking. We handle problems objectively and are sympathetic to the cast and crew’s needs as well. If you ever meet Lari be prepared to learn about independent films, Finland and Sambuca shots.

 

What can you tell us about your key cast, and to what extent were you involved in the casting process?

 

We were really searching for hidden gems and we found them. Lari even felt that a few of the cast auditioning were exactly as he pictured them when writing the script. The key cast had become friends on set, which translated well on the screen. They all persevered through long days with no complaints. I couldn’t have asked for a better situation.

 

Do talk about the shoot as such for a bit and the on-set atmosphere ... and how hands-on or hands-off a producer were you during the actual shoot?

 

When the budget can’t afford to pay separate people to clean up garbage, drive equipment and people around the producer has to find a way to make it happen which usually means doing it themselves. All the crew members including the keys had to take on roles that are usually divided into separate teams. So we all had to collaborate and help out where it was needed. We discussed this with everyone right from the beginning. The dynamic was very transparent in that aspect. Everyone had fun and got along very well and for that we are extremely lucky.

 

Anything you can tell us about audience and critical reception of Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us yet?

 

Overall I think it has been very well received. It went to 12 different festivals and won awards including, “Best Feature Film”, “Best Comedy” and several honorable mentions. A few distributors contacted us about the film and in the end we went with Brink Vision. I attended some of the festivals in the US and across Canada and it was interesting to see different audience reactions, especially to the comedic parts of the film. It really exceeded even my expectations and has pushed me further as a filmmaker.

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

I’m directing a documentary about a young prodigy artist, Josh Tiessen. Also, I’m gathering resources for projects in the travel/documentary and horror/fantasy genres.

 

What got you into film production to begin with, and did you receive any formal training on the subject?

 

An elementary school teacher taught me how to do stop motion animation. I collaborated on some short films in high school. My parents said that your career should be something you love and enjoy doing in your spare time. This was obviously filmmaking for me. Then I went to Humber College for film and have been doing it ever since.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us?

 

I collaboratively produced a short documentary, Voorje, which was screened at Hot Docs in 2009. Since then I have continued doing work in producing, visual effects, art department, camera department and editing for various films.

 

How would you describe yourself as a producer?

 

I think the biggest thing that sets Blood Riders: The Devil Rides with Us apart from many other projects is that we finished it. The most challenging obstacle most independent films face is somewhere in post production when people run out of motivation. As on set I have been very hands-on in post production. I did the VFX and helped in several other areas not typically done by producers. I am persistent in that aspect.

 

Producers, filmmakers, whoever else who inspire you?

 

Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Peter Jackson, Guillermo Del Toro, Ridley Scott, Stanley Kubrick, Christopher Nolan, Quentin Tarantino and Roger Corman [Roger Corman bio - click here]. There are many others but these artists have inspired me the most.

 

Your favourite movies?

 

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Jurassic Park, Star Wars, Gladiator, Forrest Gump, The Matrix and The Lord of the Rings have always been at the top of my growing list of favourite movies.

 

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

 

Any movies with a weak story, especially big budget ones which can afford good writers.

 

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

 

www.laughterslaughter.com

www.facebook.com/TheDevilRidesWithUs

www.kylechappellfilms.com

 

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

 

Thank you for the interview Michael.

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

© by Mike Haberfelner


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Thanks for watching !!!



 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
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love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

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Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
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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
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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
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

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

out now on DVD