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An Interview with Richard L. Davies, Director of The Psychiatrist

by Mike Haberfelner

January 2014

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


A doctor with an absolute contempt for weakness abuses his position to take advantage of the people he is supposed to be treating.


How did you first get involved with the project, and what can you tell us about your producers Andrew [Andrew Barclay interview - click here] and David Barclay, and what was your collaboration like?


I first became involved after receiving an email from Andy. He then sent me the script and I immediately agreed to be part of the project. Andy and David have let me run freely with the film, we were able to communicate effectively about what each of us thinks will or wonít work. Itís been very easy working with them both as we all seem to be on the same page.


How would you describe your directorial approach to your story at hand?


I let the actors embody their characters and I asked for a lot of input from them about how each of them saw their characters. I wanted each character to be as relatable and real as possible. My aim was to focus on the conversations between the characters and the manipulation that weaves its way throughout the film. With this I wanted to create as much tension as possible between the doctor and the patient, I wanted to create a place of unease that we can all relate to.


With The Psychiatrist being a horror film, is that at all a genre you can identify with, and how would you describe your approach to horror?


David Hoyle

The horror genre is a big love of mine and I spent several days deciding on which way to take the film. There are scenes of murder and death but not at the scale of a film like Saw which is basically a film with blood and shocks and no real depth, I wanted The Psychiatrist to have depth. I prefer horror films that make you think and that really engage you with the story line and the actors so that you really can feel their plight. This is how I approached the genre with this film.


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


The cast assembled were amazing. We had some real pros working on the film, such as David Hoyle, and Nathan Head [Nathan Head interview - click here]. The cast were already assembled before I became attached to the project and they all helped me a lot. It was a joy to work with them all. They all brought something different to the film which was exactly what I was looking for.


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


Nathan Head

As in most film shoots with a very tight schedule, there were ups and downs, but the whole cast and crew pulled together to make the downs enjoyable. The atmosphere was a great working environment when we were up and running. Everyone helped each other through it and I feel we all learned a lot about ourselves and each other through this shoot. In short it was a delight to work on the set with all of the people involved.


The $64-question of course: When and where will your film be released onto the general public?


The film is in the post production stage now and will soon be completed. I believe that the film will have a few premieres up and down the country and then US/UK distribution and possibly Europe after that. I cannot say when the film will be ready for release as that is down to Andy and David to decide.


Any future projects you'd like to share?


I have been working on my own feature film, The Unseen Truth for a few years now and will be finally starting up production again soon on it. There is also the feature length documentary about Manchester cult band Gabrielle's Wish, which is nearing completion and will soon be going into the post production stage. I am hopefully going to be working with Corey McVann [Corey McVann interview - click here] again on The Interrogation, which is a collection of short films. I am also hoping to be involved with Eromeda Entertainments new film A New York Story.


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


I was really young when I fell in love with Film and Television. Being a kid of the 80ís when, in my opinion, most of the best films and TV-series were conceived, I was amazed by how a film was made, especially when it came to special effects.

I was lucky enough in my teens to be accepted onto an audio visual course at college and it really just went on from there. I then received a HND and a Degree in Film and Television design, I did learn a lot from these experiences, but all of my training really came from firsthand experience.


What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to The Psychiatrist?


I did a lot of work on student films as a director and as an assistant director, and to be honest most of the films were pretty bad. Before I became attached to The Psychiatrist I was already making a film which I wrote the script. The Unseen Truth has been about ten years in the making as I originally conceived as 30 minute short film and after some tinkering with it its now finally a 153 page feature film. I did start principal photography on the film but as with life sometimes things can come along which you need to divert your whole attention to, and this has been the case as to why The Unseen Truth has not yet been finished. But this is the year that it will be finished.


Please do talk about your company Fractured Moon Films for a bit!


I set up this company as a means to carry on with what I love doing, which is making films and photography. We specialize in different areas such as music videos and wedding photography. It is also the production house for my short and feature films. I am hoping that in time, I can create a company that can help other filmmakers realize their dreams and help them to get their films made and distributed.


How would you describe yourself as a director?


Iíd like to think of myself as a laid back director, who has a vision and will keep to that vision no matter what obstacles. But I think that youíd get a better impression from other people rather than me praising myself.


Filmmakers who inspire you?


There are plenty who have inspired me over the years such as Ridley Scott, James Cameron, Peter Jackson, Kevin Smith, Terry Gilliam and more recently Guillermo Del Toro and Nicolas Winding Refn. Even Sam Raimi has inspired me because of his independent roots to filmmaking.


Your favourite movies?


Where do I begin? Well Alien and Aliens both top the list but for different reasons. I also love The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Drive, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Blade Runner, Ghostbusters and One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest. There are also some cheese fests or guilty pleasures that I love such as Big Trouble in Little China, The Thing, Evil Dead 2, Clue and even The Frighteners.


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


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There are films that I really think should be erased from memory. It wouldnít be right for me to name these films as I do have respect for them as much as the fact that they managed to get them made and in this business thatís pretty hard going. But there are whole load of films that I deplore, they are usually made in some way by Michael Bay.


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


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


There are a lot of things happening at the moment but I canít give too much away right now but there will be updates soon as I have the go ahead.


Thanks for the interview!


© by Mike Haberfelner

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Thanks for watching !!!



Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
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




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