Your new movie Kill
Teaser - in a few words, what is it about?
Teaser is the story of the studier a social outcast in love with a girl he's
never talked to, being manipulated and lead down a dark path by a serial killer, and at the same time the girl he likes is dating a total scumbag,
and it's obvious to everyone.
What were your sources of inspiration when you
dreamed up the concept for Kill
finalized the script for Kill
Teaser in South Korea while I was developing
the project. During that time I had watched a lot of Mamoru Oshii films,
and also I was extremely pissed off by the movie Zeiram.
Zeiram is this
like sci-fi slasher movie with this amazing, monster, totally scary
trailer, but it undercuts its entire premise by focusing on two standup
comedians instead of its monster horror plot.
What can you tell us about Kill
Teaser's screenwriters, and what was working with them like? And
how did this collaboration come into being even?
draft of Kill
Teaser was created by myself, Joe Witouski, and Ian
Roardan, who wanted to encapsulate the true crimes the the general plot,
and I had a list of scenes I wanted to get in the film. We had several
writers come off and on after that throughout the process, and in the end
our executive producer Rosemary Hallaren had final say on a lot of the
extent can you actually identify with Kill
Teaser's protagonist, the Studier - or with the titular character
the Studier I put some elements of my awkward teenage days into there, and
I think we've all been in situations where we have met dangerous people.
You just have to talk about Kill Teaser's mask for
a bit, and how was it achieved, and how much say did you have in its
good question: So originally I drew Kill Teaser's mask on a napkin,
and wanted something with a cyborg/Japanese/Egyptian mix to it. After
that we sent the picture to Ronin's Armor Shop in Colorado, and they sent
me back an awesome photo-realistic drawing of the thing I had drawn on the
napkin. Thankfully we had cast Charlie Liao by then, since he had a
uniquely shaped head we had it designed for his specs, and it was made
What can you tell us about Kill
Teaser's approach to horror?
Teaser we were trying to tell a unique Asian American horror film,
while also centered around facts from a true crime case known as the
Poughkeepsie Incident that occured in 2005. Those elements pretty much
came together on their own after that.
A few words about
your overall directorial approach to your story at hand?
been on a few different sets and the director takes a lot of
responsibility for everything going wrong, but at the same time has to
remain in control to execute the story properly. The biggest benefit we
had was we did a lot of pre-planning and I was very careful to make sure we
had just enough takes of everything we needed.
talk about Kill Teaser's
key cast, and why exactly these people?
The cast was great to work
with. We did an open audition in Times Square where
over 200 people showed up, some of whom had driven in from other
countries. But If I'm being completely honest with you, that audition was
kind of a disaster. We cast Charlie Liao in it, whom I'd met before in
some acting workshops, and who really totally blew it out of the water
with his audition, and Dylan Porteus who did just the same. Other than
that, with Times Square and the open door policy we got a large
amount of mentally unstable people who showed up to that audition,
including a guy who couldn't read the script, or anything. And a teenager
who got massive stage fright and left after a minute or so when it was his
turn to go up. Our lead Tobee Paik came through a casting agency, and we
also had a really hard time finding the Waitress until Laurie Riihimaki
came through for us. Any other members of the cast were standouts from the
audition projects, or people who had connections with the producers.
What can you
tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
tricky thing about the shoot was we shot I wanna think 7 days on 7
different sets with some time breaks inbetween, and it was definitely
a bit difficult keeping the energy of the cast up after the first 3 days.
The schedule was tricky as well, it's amazing it came out as well as it
$64-question of course, where can Kill
Teaser be seen?
X. McClain’s Kill
Teaser starring Tobee Paik (The Studier) and Charlie
Liao (Kill Teaser) is available now on Vubu, Vimeo, and Microsoft from
Anything you can tell us about
audience and critical reception of Kill
won several awards when we did its film circuit run. It also was the last
movie aired at the NJ Horror Con in 2019, I think it's being recieved
decently although it's very much an outlier with its Asian film style, and
hard sexual violence.
Any future projects you'd like to share?
currently sitting on a relatively finished movie we made in the pandemic
about NJ being invaded by mutants, that I need a little bit more money to
finish post production with. Also yesterday had an argument with some guy
about boxing, so I'm currently thinking I should make a boxing horror
got you into filmmaking in the first place, and did you receive any formal
training on the subject?
I was 7 I made a remake of the Star Wars trilogy with my dog and the kids
from down the road. I did an internship in college with a major studio
working on an Adam West project that never got finished, and then after
that I was in Japan during the Fukushima nuclear meltdown and helped some
filmmakers document it.
What can you tell us about your
filmwork prior to Kill
Teaser I have been helping out on various top level movies like
Fantastic Beasts, Ghostbusters, and John Wick, in various different
Teaser was the first original feature film I've done. I've
also done a lot of pilot projects and short films before that, but mostly
How would you describe yourself as a
a very reasonable person, dictated by logic.
Filmmakers who inspire you?
am currently in awe of Hideaki Anno who gets to do whatever he wants after
all these years. James Gunn has also been pretty conistently good,
Edgar Wright too, I need to see Last Night in Soho soon.
Godzilla, Godzilla vs
Biollante, Godzilla vs
Hedorah, Space Runaway Ideon,
Macross: Do You Remember Love?.
... and of course, films you really
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
although Kamen Rider ZO is a masterpiece and Mechanical
Violator Hakaider was pretty
Your/your movie's website, social media,
Anything else you're dying to mention and
I have merely forgotten to ask?
think I'm good, let me know if you have any followup questions for any of
Thanks for the