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An Interview with Adam Newman, Director of Everwinter Night

by Mike Haberfelner

March 2024

Films directed by Adam Newman on (re)Search my Trash

 

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Your new film Everwinter Night - in a few words, what's it about?

 

Two best friends try to reconnect over a long weekend that turns sinister - that's about as few words as I can put it into!

 

From what I've heard,  Everwinter Night was pretty much an on-the-spot idea when another project feel through literally the last minute - so could you elaborate on that a bit?

 

We were scheduled to film this other project, a quiet family crime drama, right at the last gasp of Covid. We were desperately trying to meet the Covid guidelines with SAG but were unable to do so in time. So, the night before all of the actors and crew drove/flew out to meet us, we had to make a decision: Cancel the project or go down the rabbit hole of the most stressful creative problem solve of all time. We chose the latter and now Everwinter Night exists!

 

What were your sources of inspiration when writing Everwinter Night?

 

We were flying by the seat of our pants due to having to write the movie on the spot, but the heart of the original idea at the core of Everwinter Night was inspired by the fear of losing my best friend: my sister, Emily.

 

You've written Everwinter Night together with Chris Goodwin - so what can you tell us about him, and what was your collaboration like?

 

Chris and I have worked on so many projects together so I do think that we are often on a similar wavelength on the stories we like, what matters to us in a story, and have similar senses of humor. It was chaos though! Once we had the project boarded out, Chris and I divided scenes and focused on specific character relationships. It's funny watching it now, knowing which scene each of us wrote and how much those scenes were influenced by our time working together. It helps that Chris is a magnificent writer and filmmaker himself, as well as an actor - he's one of our leads!

 

Do talk about Everwinter Night's approach to horror?

 

The horror in Everwinter Night creeps up on you. Everybody says that the movies we make at Dreamscape Productions are slowburns, and I think Everwinter Night falls right in line with that thought. We want to introduce you to these characters and hopefully get you to laugh and empathize with them. If you're willing to go on that ride, the horrors that appear in the second half of the story will really work for you.

 

A few words about your overall directorial approach to your story at hand?

 

This was unlike any project I've ever directed because the actors didn't know much of the story going in! We're so lucky to have a cast that we could trust - but more than that, a cast that trusted us. We tried to write to the actors that we had and what was most incredible was that they all took that and ran with it and surprised us in so many ways. I just tried to steer the ship, to make all of the actors feel comfortable and heard, and make sure that we didn't sink.

 

What can you tell us about Everwinter Night's cast, and why exactly these people?

 

They're incredible. I am the luckiest human on the planet for being allowed to work with people that are so beyond my talents. Most of these people are those who we have worked with in the past and for good reason: again, they're incredible. The other half were people that we had been dying to work with and finally got the chance to - just under very odd circumstances! Across the board though, they're all so talented. They bleed humanity. They have faces that tell stories without ever having to say a word. I can't say enough positive things about these people.

 

You of course also have to talk about Everwinter Night's main location for a bit, and what was it like filming there?

 

The Frontenac Ski Lodge! Shoutout to Michael and Tracy Drew, who own the property. I reached out to them in the very early stages of pre-production for the project we were going to make with the email heading "Odd Request", and followed it up with a plea to use their location as both our set and our lodging - something that we tend to make a habit of for these independent films. Michael responded to my email with "You had me at odd request." I know it sounds cliche, but the setting is one of the characters in the movie. And as for using it as our primary lodging space: I wouldn't change it for the world. We have adopted a summer camp vibe to all of our movies. I do hope that one day Dreamscape Productions is making monster-budget movies, but we will never give up that summer camp vibe.

 

Do talk about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere!

 

As mentioned, we try to cultivate that summer camp vibe. I have very little hair left due to the stresses of making a movie on the go - it felt like we were building the airplane as we were falling out of the sky - but the people on set are what make this all worth it. One of our producers has coined calling our team "The Merry Band". A safe, fun, laid-back - as much as a set actually can be - work environment seems to be the one that is both the most productive and the best to work on.

 

Anything you can tell us about audience and critical reception of Everwinter Night?

 

We've gotten a lot of positive reviews, and I think it's for those people who have jumped on board early when we let you know that you're going to hang out with these characters for a little bit. It's always nerve-racking watching the movie with an audience, but when you hear them laugh or jump out of their seat, you know you've done at least something right. There's a moment in the film where an audience member yelled "Noooo!", and that made us feel pretty good too.

 

Any future projects you'd like to share?

 

Absolutely! We are in pre-production of our next feature film, Round The Decay, which is even more of a horror with a line of dark comedy. We are three weeks away from the first shoot date right now. So needless to say, we are stressed and terrified.

 

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

 

Ever since I've been able to read and write, I knew that I wanted to be a storyteller of some sort. Film should have been the obvious choice - we were watching everything all day at my house growing up - but it really ended up taking hold late in high school. I dipped my toe in playwriting in high school, and I overheard my playwriting teacher talking about the movie Magnolia. I ended up finding it in a bargain bin at a Newbury Comics and watched it at home and knew immediately that I would have to devote the rest of my life to making these things.

 

As for formal training? Nope. I grabbed a camera and started learning on the fly. After being awful at doing this for seven years, I started demanding that I get better at it. Lloyd Kaufman's Make Your Own Damn Movie lit a fire under my ass. And then I went to the best 2000s film school: YouTube. I watched every video I could about lighting, composition, blocking etc. and absorbed as many video essays as I could that focused on using the camera to speak a language. I'm amazed at how much more there still is to learn.

 

What can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Everwinter Night?

 

It's been a long journey and we have dabbled in so many genres. My first wave of filmmaking, during the seven years of being truly awful at this, had a lot of talky relationship movies. That included a feature film and its prequel short - both of which have, rightfully, not seen the light of day. Once I got onto my second life in this field, we started with a movie called Scarlet Cay, which I wanted to be like if Troma had made a Richard Linklater movie. From there we made Ice Patrol, streaming on Tubi and Amazon Prime, which is a quiet family crime drama feature. Next, we made a tense post-apocalyptic fantasy thriller short called Nomad, and after that we raised a chunk of money to make a sci-fi action/romance - think Firefly meets a Hong Kong Jackie Chan movie - called Carolina Shag. We hope to continue to dabble in a world of different genres, smashing them all into each other all along the way.

 

How would you describe yourself as a director?

 

It's hard to answer this one because I'm not the one directing me. I know I've been working hard to communicate clearly with actors. I have a lot of caffeine fueled energy on set but am learning to cut my speaking speed down about 50%. I want to believe that I operate a safe set where cast and crew can freely express their ideas and feel comfortable in expressing their discomforts and concerns. I want to believe that I'm a director who they can trust. But you would have to ask them to get a clearer image as to how.

 

Filmmakers who inspire you?

 

Every filmmaker. Truly. Making a movie is climbing the tallest mountain. Anybody who can get out of them alive is an inspiration. Anybody who can make something watchable from that is a miracle worker.

 

Your favourite movies?

 

Oh boy, I could go all day. I'll just fire off a few off the top of my head and then get really angry later when I realize I've forgotten some: Magnolia, Children Of Men, Pulp Fiction, Lost In Translation, After Yang, Everything Everywhere All At Once, Get Out, Blood Simple, No Country For Old Men, Fargo, Whiplash, Toy Story 3, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Princess Bride, Clue.

Horror favorites: Aliens, Alien, Alien: Covenant, It Follows, Barbarian, Talk To Me, Hereditary. I apologize if these are all so recent; they're the first ones that came to mind that I really dug!

 

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

 

I hate to hate on movies. I will say that I'm not a big fan of biopics and/or period dramas. They just aren't typically my cup of tea. I am suspicious of movies that seem to exist to manufacture tears through cheap methods. I don't want to attack any individual movies though because I like to think of these filmmakers as my peers now and I know how damn hard it is to get one made. Off the record, over a coffee though - I'm sure I rally hard against a lot of movies!

 

Your/your movie's website, social media, whatever else?

 

Feeling lucky?
Want to
search
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results?
(commissions earned)

The links below
will take you
just there!!!

Find Adam Newman
at the amazons ...

USA  amazon.com

Great Britain (a.k.a. the United Kingdom)  amazon.co.uk

Germany (East AND West)  amazon.de

Looking for imports?
Find Adam Newman here ...

Thailand  eThaiCD.com
Your shop for all things Thai

www.dreamscapeproductions.com - it's a newer website under construction but we're getting there.

@dreamscapeproductionsllc on Instagram and Facebook.

@everwinternight on Instagram and Facebook.

@round_the_decay on Instagram and Facebook.

@directoradamnewman on Instagram.

 

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

 

If you've somehow read this far: If you really liked a movie, be a champion for it! Tell everybody you know. Show them where it's streaming. Any time I see something great in the theater now, I buy tickets for a group of my friends so they can see it too. These things are meant to be seen and shared. Ultimately, you are what you love.

 

Thanks for the interview!

 

© 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 !!!



 

 

In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
Luana Ribeira, Rudy Barrow and Rami Hilmi
special appearances by
Debra Lamb and Lynn Lowry

 

directed by
Eddie Bammeke

written by
Michael Haberfelner

produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

Amazon

Amazon UK

Vimeo

 

 

 

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
Amazon!!!