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An Interview with Steven Shea, Director of Hoodoo for Voodoo

by Mike Haberfelner

October 2008

Films directed by Steven Shea on (re)Search my Trash

 

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You are about to release your film Hoodoo for Voodoo on DVD. Can you tell us what the film is about?

 

The film is a horror/comedy about a group of college aged kids who win a trip to Louisiana and end up getting mixed up in a deadly voodoo plot.

 

How did you come up with the Mardi Gras theme of the movie, and what were your inspirations for the film as such?

 

I was born in Louisiana, and much of my family still lives there. I knew we had access to some great production value, if we shot there. So we got a list of the locations and props we had access to and packed up from Orlando, FL.

 

How much research did you do on the voodoo background of the film?

 

I always do alot of research before I tackle a script. I read Wade Davis' essential Bible on Hatian Voodoo and Zombies The Serpent & The Rainbow and watched every Voodoo themed film and National Geographic Channel Special. All of the concepts in the film are based on truth, and then stretched into the supernatural elements.

 

Hoodoo for Voodoo is set in New Orleans. Did you in any way set out to catch the post-Hurricane Kathrina vibe of the city?

 

The movie actually takes place in 2005, when it was shot. We filmed 2 months before the storm hit. Ironically not meaning to lock it in at that time, but we do reference the period in the film. In fact, a few of the locations we shot at were wiped out in the storm. We captured the last Mardi Gras before the storm too.

 

Essentially, Hoodoo for Voodoo is a horror comedy. Why do you think the two genres mix so well?

 

Horror and Comedy balance because you have to have relief after suspense. If your film is only based on suspenseful sequences you begin losing your audience to boredom. You throw in some comedy elements, and you keep your audience comfortable, so that when you jab a shocking moment, it has a much better impact.

 

A few words about your lead actors?

 
Linnea Quigley
Tiffany Shepis
Debbie Rochon

The film stars some fresh faces, Brunilda Zekthi, Chris McDaniel, Sacha Crutchfield and Garrett Harrison. Their chemistry was spectacular, and the group definitely held their own with their comedic timing. Everyone got along great, and that made things much easier on set.

 

Your film also features quite a few almost iconic screamqueens like Linnea Quigley, Tiffany Shepis [Tiffany Shepis interview - click here] and the ubiquitous Debbie Rochon [Debbie Rochon interview - click here]. How did you come to cast them, and what was the collaboration like?

 

Linnea was amazing and completely transformed herself into our Voodoo Queen Marie. I had written the character specifically for her. We contacted her at a convention with a script, and then worked out the deal with her management. We lucked out by getting Tiffany who gave a wonderfully disturbing performance as our Ritual Dancer Ayida. We had contact with her through our friends we produced Andre The Butcher with. Debbie Rochon was in town shooting a movie titled Death Plots for our Co-Producer Jason Liquori. So we grabbed her on one of her nights off. We also have Hollie Winnard (Beauty And The Geek, Zombies Zombies Zombies) as our Sacrificial Virgin.

 

Lloyd Kaufman

And then there's also Lloyd Kaufman popping up in your film, as he does a lot lately. What is it like directing Kaufman, and does he take direction well or are you just letting him do his thing?

 

Lloyd was fantastic to work with; he is definitely one of the leading men still supporting true independent film. He came in to play a character named Crack-Head Charlie. He ended up inventing a character that was far beyond my expectations. He did adlib a few lines, and gave us different hilarious possibilities with each take.

 

A few words about the bands on the soundtrack?

 

We have an amazing soundtrack set up with bands all over the US, and one from Canada. We also recorded a couple original songs for the film, including the jazzy punk theme song by T13C! of Gainesville, FL. We were grateful to nab some larger nationwide acts such as Calabrese and eve to adam. We also do a beautiful cover of the classic Misfits tune, Die, Die My Darling.

 

The film's website/mySpace/whatever else?

 

http://www.hoodooforvoodoo.com

http://www.myspace.com/hoodooforvoodoo

http://www.abyssmal.com

 

Before making Hoodoo for Voodoo, you directed Night Owl. A few words about that one?

 

The Night Owl was the first feature film that we put together. It's a Biblical thriller about 4 girls at a lake house who accidentally unleash the first demon upon to the world to kick off the revelations. It was a great experience, and we learned a lot. It was picked up and distributed globally through Brain Damage Films.

 

A few words about your short Clarks?

 

Clarks was a short film that we did that was a spoof on director Kevin Smith's Viewaskewniverse films. We got as many look-a-likes as we could and shot it in a video store I was managing at the time. It got us some good press, and was reviewed well. Unfortunately we used so many licensed products and music in it that we will never be able to truly release it.

 

Any films you directed I have forgotten to mention?

 

I've directed many short films over the years, all of which can be viewed on our website (www.abyssmal.com). I also have a couple more in the works.

 

As a producer, you have also worked on a few films not directed by yourself. Care to talk about any of those?

 


I was able to come aboard and help co-produce a film called Andre The Butcher, which stars Ron Jeremy as a psycho killer chili chef. That was a great experience, and we still work with many of the same crew today. I am currently producing a new film titled Doomsday County, which is four stories all wrapping around this one bizarre area. We look to wrap production of that near the year's end.

 

You usually direct, (co-)produce and (co-)write your movies. Which aspect of moviemaking do you enjoy the most?

 

I enjoy directing usually the most. I really like being on set, and going through the motions of production. Getting to work with actors and try to push your vision out of them. Writing is fun because it’s much less labor intensive (sometimes).

 

Your films both as director and producer often have a horror theme. Is horror a genre dear to you?

 

Yes, I am a Horror Filmmaker. I want to solidify myself in that niche and ride it out as long as I can. Horror is a genre that isn’t going to ever go away. It was here since the beginning of the camera, and it will be here when it ends.

 


Any future projects you'd like to talk about?

 

We are currently in production of Doomsday County (www.doomsdaycounty.com). We have a short film I am directing that was written by the Bram Stoker Award winning author Owl Goingback titled Guitar God. We are also working on a couple more feature length scripts for our next project. I just recently wrote and colored a new horror/comedy comic book called The Vandyls that is currently in a contest. We are looking to make that into a graphic novel at some point.

 

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x-rated  find Steven Shea at adultvideouniverse.com

Directors who have influenced you as a filmmaker?

 

Truthfully I really enjoy Alfred Hitchcock and Stanley Kubrick. Though, my style draws more similarities to Sam Raimi and Lloyd Kaufman.

 

Your favourite movies, both recent and all-time favourites?

 

All times favorites are going to be Psycho (1960), A Clockwork Orange, The Exorcist, Scream, Evil Dead II. More recently, I really enjoyed [*REC], Hatchet and Planet Terror.

 

And of course, some movies you really deplored?

 

I would say the worst film I've ever seen was Ed Wood's Orgy Of The Dead. It's 92 minutes of bikini and topless girls dancing in a graveyard to Criswell. Normally a plot like that would be very exciting to a viewer... but it just didn't work out that way.

 

Anything else you are dying to tell us and I've just forgotten to ask?

 

Get Hoodoo For Voodoo on DVD Oct 14th! You can buy it on our website (www.abyssmal.com) or through amazon.com.

 

Thanks for the interview.

 

© by Mike Haberfelner


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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
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

 

 

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
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