I know we have talked about this before [click
here], but bring us up to speed, what is the basic concept of your
upcoming movie Scream Machine
going to be?
Scarlet - Scream Machine
is another anthology, it will be my 5th one, last time
with Death by VHS we got away from the
host but this time we will be bringing
him back in such a way we have never done before: Scarlet Fry will
have a co-host this time & a whole new Identity. I don't want to give to
much away but it will have a last man on earth feel to it. The 5 short films
will be tied into it. This is by far the best anthology I've done, the
production value is much higher on this one, & I think a lot of people who
have seen my past anthologies are gonna really be thrown for a loop on how
much better this one is going to be.
How did the project come into being to begin with?
- My partner on Death by VHS, David
Sabal, mentioned he wanted to make another film. I agreed only if we could
shoot it & have it done in 20 weeks due to some other commitments I
have, so it was a big challenge for us, we agreed to do it & we really
bared down. When Paul came into the picture it was a huge blessing, he
really pushed all of us to make this film much better than it would have been if we stuck with our original
plans. Paul hopped on board and we all
three just gelled really well, it's a great team, all the actors did great
& we will be done shooting by the end of the year, our goal has been
acomplished and then some. I'm more proud of this film than I've ever been
of any of my prior projects. I really gotta hand it to Dave & Paul for
being on board with me.
your collaboration on Scream Machine
like - and how did the two of
you hook up in the first place?
Paul - I
met Scarlet through a horror film ďmovie nightĒ he was holding. The
concept for the movie night was that once a week or so a bunch of horror
film fans would get together and watch or share different films that the
others might enjoy. I admired Scarletís ability to get
things done fil- wise and get them to market (as well as promotion and
such). Iím not great with social media and had some
bad experiences with distributors so someone with his experience was
quite a positive influence. We also had lots in common beyond
that. From there, we started bouncing different ideas and
that led us to Scream Machine. The collaboration has been
great. Iíve not worked as a collective before. It
was a nice balanced group dynamic. It was a very different
experience from earlier films where I may have taken on too many duties
which ultimately burned me out.
Paul, you have previously
also worked on Dead Enders -
so do talk about that one!
Paul - Dead Enders was a
tremendous experience. That was where I was able to fully
implement my philosophy of micro-budget filmmaking for the first time. My
first film was called The Domain, and I approached that the way most
filmmakers approach their work. You write the script and then
find a way to shoot it. Thatís why locations often seem out
of place. Four grey walls as I like to call it. Itís
not very interesting for the viewer. Dead Enders was an
existing script that was specifically re-crafted to take advantage of
unique locations that had become available to me. Building
sets is a fun (although tiring) experience. It can really add
atmosphere to a low budget film. You can create a world for the viewer
that doesnít otherwise exist. Thatís what Hollywood does
on a larger scale. They donít ask around to see whose
apartment they can shoot in. There is no reason why indie filmmakers
canít follow that model. All you need is a garage or a work
shed (you get the idea). For Dead Enders we built a set long enough to
shoot a scene or sequence, then weíd tear it down and use the same
materials in the same space to build something else. It was
fun and very effective.
More about Dead Enders here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dead-Enders/129262703781852
far as I know, four of the five segments of Scream Machine
already shot. So what are they about, and what were your inspirations for
Scarlet - I
really took my time with writing the 3 of the five segments I did write.
The first one has a real slasher/revenge vibe to it & was influenced
by some of my favorite slashers like Prom Night & Terror
we did one that was based on a true story , so I really reaserched this
particular serial killer and made the film very true to the things he did
in real life. This one will gross out the most jaded horror fan for sure.
The last one I wrote was really influenced by April Fools Day - you
know if it's real or a spoof, it's really effective. The final two segments
are written by Paul and he really challenged me to up my game, these
stories are going to be amazing & I can't wait to see what people think.
We did things that I have never dreamed of ever doing in my films. People
are really gonna watch these and ask themselves "How the hell did
they do that?" I'd rather not say more until people actually see it, I
promise you this film is going to be amazing.
Do talk about the individual shoots for a bit?
- Scarlet and I discussed early
on how this anthology should have an ambitious feel. It was
important that we not fall into the old trap of segments being shot and
edited the exact same way. We wanted a different feel and
personality for each of the five segments. So far that has
worked out nicely. The first segment shot was called Sledgehammer. That was shot and edited straight up using
traditional filmmaking techniques for what was essentially a traditional
revenge story. The second short was called Cannibal Pen Pals. In
its heart, this short is a love story, twisted as it may be. We
added scenes of wistful reflection that make the audience strangely
sympathetic before we gross them out. Third was April Foolís Party which
was far more kinetic. It dealt with a group of sadistic tweekers,
so we wanted to parallel the experience of drug induced euphoria by using
more modern techniques, shaky camera, and quick edits. Itís a
completely different feel from the other segments. Septic Shock was
then designed to be dark and scary, claustrophobic and angry. Again,
a big departure from the other segments. The final short (yet
to be shot) will have a self-deprecating humor to it. Much more
a tongue in cheek sense of self awareness that the audience should
appreciate as we deconstruct Scarletís earlier films and signal a new
beginning that Scarletís fans should really like. Ultimately
itís all about the viewers and giving them a fun experience. Thatís
where the gore comes in. That will likely be the bloodiest
leaves us with the fifth short - what have you planned?
- The drive-in segment, which is
the last to be shot, will be an exercise in self-deprecating humor with an
ample supply of gore. We will actually use one of Scarletís
earlier films as a plot device. Scarlet will physically move
out of the films of the past into the current film and affect the actions
of present time. Beyond that, youíll have to see the short
because I donít want to give too much away.
can you tell us about the film's overall approach to horror (as in
suspense vs sudden shocks, atmosphere vs all-out gore and the like)?
- Iím as huge fan of film.
There are elements of all different styles of film techniques in my
work. Horror is my favorite and I often get frustrated by the
lack of respect the genre gets. Horror as a genre is the most
imaginative of all styles of film, in my opinion. Great
filmmakers like Francis Ford Coppela and James Cameron have gotten their
start with Horror because there is so much room to experiment and find
their voice. While each of the segments of Scream Machine
have itís own personality, you should see many familiar horror
techniques used. Septic Shock for example is largely
atmosphere, whereas Sledgehammer is all about the gore. For
me, the biggest issue is to make the segments entertaining and distinct. I
believe that horror film fans will appreciate the effort behind Scream Machine
because we clearly respect the genre. Weíre not
falling into clichť and weíre not padding the film with 20 minutes of
someone walking around in the dark with a flashlight. For us, itís all about providing horror audiences with an experience they can
connect with and frankly they deserve.
film will star the ubiquitous Troma
legend Lloyd Kaufman - so how did that come into being, how will he be
featured, and what was it like working with him?
I worked in acquisitions for a while, and a filmmaker named Derek
Young [Derek Young interview -
click here] was signed by me to the distributor I worked for at the
time. He was
very happy that we had got two of his projects out there, & one of them
had Lloyd Kaufman. I asked him about acquiring him for Scream Machine
& the next thing I know Lloyd shot some footage for us featuring
himself & gave us permission to use it in the film. It really was a
dream come true for me to actually make a film with Lloyd in it, & it
is why this film is so dear to my heart. There is nothing that will stop
me from releasing this film for that reason.
you tell us about the rest of your cast, and why exactly these people?
cast was great. In my prior films I a lot of times just put my firends in
the movie & they couldn't act, this made some of my prior films suffer.
I did not do that with Scream Machine, everyone in this film is a
professional actor & they all did a stand-out job. I wanted this film
to really be the best thing I've ever done & it is by far.
idea when and where the film will be released onto the general public yet?
have arrangements to submit the film in March to a well-known genre
distributor - I won't say who yet but they have shown some interest in the
film and we are very excited about it. I would guess this film will be
released on DVD sometime by the summer of 2015.
future projects beyond Scream Machine?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
Paul - I am planning to rerelease
Dead Enders, which didnít get proper treatment
from its prior distributor, as well as releasing my first film The Domain
(despite some limited theatrical screenings it has never been officially
released on home video). From there, there are several
projects Iíll be completing over the next two years. The
first up is a Kentucky Fried Movie style comedy from a team of writers I
work with which goes by the name The Fancy Lad Theater (named after my
production company Fancy Lad Films). This film will be called
Closed for Renovations and should be a lot of fun to shoot. Then
itís back to horror with a good old fashioned monster movie. Details
coming soon on that. I think itís important to get away from horror
from time to time so that you donít become clichť and disrespectful. You
need to use all your muscles you know?
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
would also like to thank everyone who funded this film via IndieGoGo, we
promise to deliver!
Thanks for the