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An Interview with Richard Griffin, Director of Normal

by Mike Haberfelner

September 2012

Films directed by Richard Griffin on (re)Search my Trash


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Your upcoming film Normal - in a few words what is it about?


Normal is an extremely dark and troubling look into the mind of a serial killer. But it's not a film like Psycho or Silence of the Lambs, or even something along the lines of Maniac. The film follows a young man, who has already murdered nine people, during a six day "cooling off period" between kills, and explores his relationships between his victims, past and present.


It really is unlike any screenplay I've ever read. It's profoundly disturbing and tragic, but not in any way I've seen a movie of this nature done before.


To stick with the movie's title for a moment: What does the word "normal" mean to you?


Normal is completely subjective. What's normal to you might be completely bizarre or obscene to someone else. In the cast of the movie the question is, if you're born with being a murderer in your DNA, meaning that you weren't turned into one by something along the lines of child abuse or whatnot, then are you still "normal"?


How did the project come into being to begin with?


The idea hit me one night to make a film about a serial killer unlike any I had seen before. I was having a chat with my friend playwright Lenny Schwartz and told him a few of my rough ideas... and became quite excited by the project.

Michael Reed

On top of that, it's the perfect starring vehicle for Michael Reed -- a very talented actor who's appeared in five of my previous features. Michael has a real gift for humanizing even the most repulsive characters, so I thought nobody can really play this role the way it demands to be played more than him.


Normal is written by playwright Lenny Schwartz - what can you tell us about him, his writing, how did you first meet, and what is your collaboration like?


I met Lenny on Facebook by chance. He's another Rhode Islander like myself, and a very successful playwright in the area. I asked him to write the screenplay for my last film, Murder University, and we had a great time with that. It was one of the most pleasant, exciting collaborations I've ever had so I really wanted to have the chance to work with him again.

One thing I will say about Lenny is he's a workaholic. I've never seen a writer produce so much quality material in such a short span of time. He's so passionate you get the feeling he never sleeps ... ever!

But here's that question of what "normal" is again... because under that sweet, unassuming family man image he writes extremely dark, savage and profane material. So, is Lenny normal? The verdict is still out.


Normal is still pretty much in the fundraising stages. What can you tell us about your fundraising efforts?


We started an IndieGoGo page, which is currently doing OK. We're going to have multiple screenings of our last film Murder University to help raise the cash, along with many other events and whatnot. I'm hellbent to get the budget for this film, because - especially in this time of endless sequels, remakes, found-footage films - people are craving something original.


How do you plan to approach Normal from a director's point of view?


Sarah Nicklin

Being a visual medium, that's always a hard thing to express in words but for Normal I plan on using a very restrained, almost Hitchcockian visual style. The director of photography on this project is Ken Willinger, who photographed our movie Exhumed, and he did a brilliant job on it. I'm sure he'll bring something exciting and unique to the visual style of the film.


Anything you can tell us about your cast yet?


Right now, three of our leads are Michael Reed, Sarah Nicklin [Sarah Nicklin interview - click here] and Nat Sylva. Michael and Sarah have appeared in countless of my films up until Murder University, when they moved to Los Angeles, but I'm overjoyed that they will be returning for Normal.


Nat Sylva

Nat Sylva is a new actor I've just started working with, and he's a joy. He gives a showstopping performance in Murder University and I'm really looking forward to working with him again on this project.


I will be announcing the rest of the cast after we finishing our auditions on September 11th.


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Once you have succeeded raising your funds, how do you plan to proceed - and any idea when it will be released onto the general public (though I realize this is probably waaay too early to ask)?


Shooting is to begin on Normal on December 1st, 2012, and we'll be shooting for 15 days straight. After that, we'll be in post-production all winter, and hopefully premiere the film in early spring of 2013.


Any future projects beyond Normal?


A few, but they're all in the early stages of development... so I'd rather keep them a mystery for now!


Your/your film's website, Facebook, indiegogo, whatever else?





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


Well, just that I hope everyone who reads this article could find it in their hearts to kick in a buck or two to our IndieGoGo fundraiser. This movie means so much to all involved, and we're dying to see it get off the ground! And thank you in advance!


Thanks for the interview!


Thank you!


© 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!!!


Bauliche Angelegenheiten
ein Roman von
Michael Haberfelner


Jetzt kaufen bei