Your upcoming movie My Deadly Playmate - in a few words, what
is it about?
The basic concept of the film entails the murder of a young boy who is
murdered and through a supernatural means, comes to inhabit the body of
his doll. A number of years later, a little girl with autism finds the
doll. Her family assumes that the girls claims of the doll being alive are
simply due to her imagination, and diagnosis of autism. A series of
murders occur and everyone begins to suspect that there is something more
to the little girl's story. There are many twists and turns within the
story, and the motivation of the doll may or may not be malicious.
What were your sources of inspiration when
dreaming up My Deadly Playmate?
I grew up watching
and loving 80's horror, so many of the films that have inspired me have
been from that time period. Child's Play is obviously an
influence, as the character of Chucky is so iconic, especially within the
world of "killer-doll-movies". I would also say that the
original Puppet Master is a major source of inspiration. And
believe it or not, the classic soap Dark Shadows has
stimulated my imagination as of late.
What can you tell
us about your movie's approach to horror?
approach to this particular film will be to explore many of the expected
scenarios of the scenes and take them into totally unexpected directions.
I always want to keep the audience guessing. I also want to infuse a
mixture of horror and comedy together in this film, and a sense of offbeat
drama. The characters for the most part will be very eccentric, but their
responses to the events around them will be realistic. I believe it's
important for the characters to believe what is happening no matter how
crazy it might be; because if they can't believe it, how can the audience?
Most of My
Deadly Playmate will be shot in a single location - so do talk about
your location for a bit, and where do you see the advantages and
challenges filming there?
The main story location
will take place at an inn being reopened and restored by a family. A
series of "interesting" guests will arrive to stay and they may
or may not meet their end. I think that the advantage of primarily filming
in one location will be a smoother filming schedule with less travel and
transportation of equipment, props, and costumes. The only foreseeable
challenge of filming at the location that I have in mind may be
scheduling to film on days and times that will not conflict with the day
to day operations of the building. The intended location serves as a
theatre and studio. But I can usually work around anything.
What can you tell us about the
intended overall look and feel of My Deadly Playmate?
Deadly Playmate will definitely have an overall gothic feel to it. The
lighting will be very dark, and the wardrobe will also be gothic and a
little retro too. The film will have its own sense of time, so current
styles of clothing will not matter. Although, the clothing will all be of
a certain color scheme to reflect the gothic vibe set in the story.
also play not one but two characters in My Deadly Playmate - so do
talk about those for a bit, and how do you prepare for playing them? And
since one character's female, what kind of a challenge is that?
I love the challenge of playing more than one character in a film, and
also playing characters that are vastly different from myself and each
other. With that being said, I tend to break the traditional cinematic
rules by portraying characters that are not only male but female,
different ages, and ethnic backgrounds. Nothing is off limits in my
productions. I suppose I have a very Shakespearian approach to casting. Ha
ha. In this upcoming film, I will be portraying two characters that are
complete opposite to one another. One is male and the other is female. The
character of Dr. Hall is that of a parapsychologist and the other
character is Alexandra Malloy, a young woman with a devastating past. The
challenges associated with playing these characters, will be perhaps the
technical aspects of filming them in scenes together, where I will have to
utilize both stand-ins and green screen. So there will be a good deal of
planning involved for sure. In regards to preparation, I really just think
about who each character is before the camera turns on, and try to portray
their motivations as best I can. I shut out the other character and simply
focus on bringing him or her to life. I will say that playing a female or
someone of a different ethnic background is always fun, because I get a
chance to express myself in a way that I might not otherwise ever get a
chance to. There is something freeing about being able to be somebody
completely different from yourself, even if it is for a few minutes.
talk about the rest of your projected cast, and why exactly these people?
tend to work with a select group of the same actors, as they are talented,
dedicated and share the same passion for independent horror as I do. There
is a sort of chemistry that has developed among us, in which we can play
off of each other and offer creativity in an open and supportive
environment. Some of the best moments have been created by improvisation
or suggested ideas while on set. And I always welcome ideas. And on the
other hand, the actors trust me and bring their best effort forward
knowing that I will make it all work when the scene is cut together. there
is a lot of trust within the group. I do however, always try to welcome
new talent into the mix as well. But I think I will always have a core
group that I will work with. As of right now, actress Lisa Vaccaro (All Hallows' Eve Horror,
The Murderous Revenge of Lizzie
Stillborn and The Lost Campfire Tales) is set to play a
lead role and Joshua "Beefy" Anderson (All Hallows'
Eve and The Lost Campfire Tales) is also set to return in
a role. Both roles will be very bizarre to say the least.
far as I know, the film's still in pre-production - so at what stage
exactly are you, and what's the schedule? And any idea when and where My
Deadly Playmate might be released yet, however tentatively?
am still in the early preproduction stages of this project. The basic
storyline has been carved out and the script is coming together. I hope to
begin filming this coming fall and have the completed film ready to be
shown at film festivals by fall of 2018. After that, the film will be
released on my VHX site for rental, and DVD copies will be available as
future projects beyond My Deadly Playmate?
have at least one or two ideas for future films rolling around in my
head. It's really too early to say too much about these future films other
than one will have to do with the horrors of Easter, and another one will
have to do with zombies. I know that is all a little vague, but I never
like to give too much away ;)
got you into the filmworld to begin with, and did you receive any formal
training on the subject?
I grew up acting in both plays and
musicals and always dreamt of being in films. Once I began college, I took
a class on basic film editing, but that was a long time ago and the
process that I learned involved VHS tapes and large editing machines. It
was a great way to learn the concept of working with footage and putting
it together. However, when I established my own production company, I
taught myself how to edit using a laptop and editing software. There was a
lot of trial and error, but I have learned a lot over the years. So
really, I have not received much in the way of formal training. I have
always believed that if you want to know how to do something, you just
have to learn it and not be afraid of making mistakes in the process.
You've worked in various
functions on movies, both in front of and behind the camera - so what do
you enjoy the most, what could you do without?
enjoyed every aspect of creating my films, just in different ways. I never
intended to write, direct, edit, produce and act in my projects, but it
came to be that way out of necessity and for budget reasons. So in order
to get the films created, sometimes I have had to wear many
"hats". I would say that I enjoy acting in front of the camera
the most, but it is not always easy for me to play a large role because I
have to juggle directing the cast at the same time, and set up the camera
for the shots needed. I think I actually dislike directing the most,
because I never want to come across as too demanding, although everyone
says I am not when they work with me.
you tell us about your filmwork prior to My Deadly Playmate - in
I have a total of five previous feature
length movies, and four short films, all of which have been released
through my company Glamboy Productions. I have also acted in a couple of
other films from other production companies, which is always interesting
as I enjoy seeing how others work. There is always something that I can
learn while being on the set of someone else's production. So in
productions from other companies, I have only acted. In my own, as I
mentioned earlier, I have filled almost every production role right down
to crew and makeup. I just do whatever it takes to get my films made.
actors, whoever else you inspire you?
I was inspired by Wes
Craven, as A
Nightmare on Elm Street was one of the first horror films I had
ever seen. That movie has definitely influenced some of my creative style.
I remember Wes talking in an interview once, and he said something along
the lines that he thought it was important to make the audience laugh in
order to set them up for the next scare. I never forgot that, and it has
influenced my storytelling style, as I like to mix horror and comedy
together. The American Horror Story series has also inspired
me in many ways as well. As a result, I discovered the work of Jessica
Lange, and I have come to admire her greatly. She is always able to make
her crazy characters believable no matter what the story calls for. And as
for an actor that has inspired me, I would have to say Robert Englund [Robert
Englund bio - click here], the original Freddy
Krueger himself. After playing the character for eight films,
he was somehow always able to play Freddy in a different manner and
deliver an excellent performance. I really admire that.
Your favourite movies?
few come to mind. The original Fright Night, House
of 1000 Corpses and Return
of the Living Dead. There are more but those are truly on the top
of my list. Some movies over the years don't have the same effect on me or
no longer find enjoyable. But these three films have always been
entertaining to me, even though I have seen them more times than I can
and of course, films you really deplore?
I don't care for
horror films that have a lot of torture or realistic murder in them. I
avoid the Hostel
films for this reason. I also do not care most remakes. The remake of A
Nightmare on Elm Street is a prime example as I feel it pales in
comparison. I feel that remakes are just not creative and that it is
usually a way to just cash in on old ideas.
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
My website is
currently under construction, but my films can be found for purchase or
rental at https://glamboyproductions.vhx.tv/
and all updates on my company and films can be found at https://www.facebook.com/GlamboyProductions/
you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
forget to check out the indiegogo campaign for My Deadly Playmate - https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/my-deadly-playmate-horror-death#/.
Other than that, I think you covered everything. Thank you again for
interviewing me. It's been a pleasure!
for the interview!