Thursday, 20 February 2020

Horror Channel gets beastly in March with Creature Feature season


Carnivorous sandworms, murderous ant hybrids, a giant snake and deadly creepy spiders...Horror Channel gets beastly this March with a CREATURE-FEATURE SEASON – a monstrous collection of creature carnage, which includes the UK TV premieres of IT CAME FROM THE DESERT, Marko Mäkilaakso’s smart, funny and very creepy homage to Ray Harryhausen, and Micah Gallo’s skin-tingling directorial debut ITSY BITSY, every arachnophobe’s worst nightmare. Broadcast on Friday nights throughout the month, the season also includes the channel premiere of TREMORS, Ron Underwood’s affectionate throwback to 1950s creature features, starring Kevin Bacon, and the star-studded jungle snake nightmare ANACONDA, starring Jon Voight, Owen Wilson, Jennifer Lopez, Ice Cube and Eric Stoltz.


Full film details in transmission order:


Friday 6 March @ 21:00 – TREMORS (1990) *Channel Premiere
Kevin Bacon stars in this revved up monster movie made with an enthusiastic nod to classic 1950s monster flicks. Two handymen must battle giant carnivorous sandworms that threaten their small Nevada town. The eccentric and resilient townspeople must do everything in their powers to survive this new menacing species.


Friday 13 March @ 21:00 – ITSY BITSY (2018) *UK TV Premiere
Kara (Elizabeth Roberts), a single mother struggling to raise two children in New York City, receives a job offer to work as a private nurse in the mid-West. At first things seem normal enough, but what Kara doesn’t know is that doom preceded their arrival in the form of a mysterious ancient relic. And, if her family are to survive the horrific nightmare now lurking in the shadows, they will need to confront their deepest fears and personal demons.


Friday 20 March @ 21:00 – IT CAME FROM THE DESERT (2012) *UK TV Premiere
Inspired by Cinemaware’s cult 1980s video game, itself motivated by the giant creature feature craze infesting 1950s Hollywood. Get ready for the pulp action horror mutant monster movie of the year, involving rival motocross heroes and cocooned heroines, out-of-control kegger parties in the New Mexico desert, crashed meteors from outer space, secret underground labyrinth military bases and epic havoc caused by massive spider/ant hybrids!


Friday 27 March @ 21:00 – ANACONDA (1997)
A documentary film crew led by anthropologist Steven Cale (Eric Stoltz) and director Terri Flores (Jennifer Lopez) enters the mysterious world of the Amazon in search of the legendary Shirishama Indians. But when they meet Paul Sarone (Jon Voight), who is on his own dark quest to track a lethal 40-foot Anaconda, the expedition becomes a jungle nightmare and they must use every primal resource just to stay alive.

Horror Channel: Be Afraid
TV: Sky 317 / Virgin 149 / Freeview 70 / Freesat 138
Website: http://www.horrorchannel.co.uk

Tuesday, 18 February 2020

Interview with Tyler Cornack


Ahead of the UK premiere of BUTT BOY at Arrow Video FrightFest Glasgow 2020, director Tyler Cornack reflects on Fincher-esque cat & mouse games, creating a ‘colon cave’ and taking anal retention to a whole new level…

Is it true that BUTT BOY started life as a sketch on your Tiny Cinema comedy channel?

Yes, it started out as a very simple sketch about a man who goes to the doctor to get a prostate exam, and begins to get addicted to the feeling. It was always one of our favorite sketches because we found an interesting horror-esque tone. We also realized eluding objects with just a blank stare is just a joke where the punchline can grow through visuals. The first twelve minutes of the film is a very similar rhythm and tone to the original sketch.


For those who have yet to see it, how would you describe the film?

I understood from the beginning of writing the screenplay with Ryan that the movie was going to be very hard to explain to people. But I feel that I am getting better at it. Here goes nothing:

It’s a classic cat and mouse thriller but centered around a joke. The entire film takes one little joke and then plays it as straight as an arrow. It never apologizes or backs out of the bit.  A man is stuck in a redundant and stale lifestyle, he goes to get a rectal exam and his whole life changes. He becomes addicted to putting things up his butt. Objects turn into animals, and animals turn into children, children turn into adults. As the things get bigger his Butt gets stronger. A detective who is also dealing with his own addiction comes along and begins to put the pieces together.  It’s sort of our weird messed up version of a comic book movie. A Fincher- esque cat and mouse game, with a little Pinch of Butt.


You play the title role of the Chip, who takes ‘anal retentiveness’ to a whole new level. Was that a tough decision to make, given the challenges you faced?

I acted in the original comedy sketch so I think it was organic for us to write it around that. I don’t love acting nearly as much as directing. However, I really enjoy making people laugh and the choice came very organically. To be honest I barely remember acting in the film. I was thinking so much about the edit in my head and getting everything right logistically. I think it actually worked well though because he’s sort of this guy stuck in his own head.  I don’t think I will ever write a large role for myself ever again, but I’m really glad I got to do it in this movie.


The tone of the film is very interesting.  The central premise feels like a playful joke but everyone plays it dead straight. How did you achieve that fine balance between satire and gritty realism?

As I said before, the original sketch really made tone easy to build upon. But we wanted to make something new that you haven’t seen. Something you will walk away from and kind of be like what the hell did I just experience?  But also have pulpy movie tropes and homages you have seen before. As far as the balance goes  with the comedy, we cut many scenes out because they felt too funny. It took you out of the story. I always say it’s like the opposite of “Airplane”. In Airplane the characters are in a very serious situation of a plane going down but the movie is filled with jokes. In Butt Boy, the situation is the joke, but it’s played very seriously. It’s like listening to a good Norm Macdonald joke, and I truly think we deliver with the punch line in the end.


Tyler Rice is magnificent as the investigating police officer. How did you cast him?

He is one of my favorite actors in Los Angeles. Since the moment I met him I have been trying to write things for him. We met years ago when I was casting for a short film. He’s a pretty serious actor that I love to see in comedy stuff. It cracks me up how into it he gets if that makes sense? I love seeing him on screen. He’s got one of those faces that belongs in movies. He’s a super hard worker and puts 110 percent into everything he does, and what director wouldn’t want that from an actor?


Addiction is at the heart of the story. Were there any real-like experiences that you drew upon?

Not to sound like a pretentious nightmare, but I think we all have addictions. Luckily, I personally haven’t had any that are toxic enough to ruin my life. But I have had and continue to have people in my life that struggle with substance and stuff. You take things from personal experience and from others around you I think.


Where did you shoot the ‘Colon Cave’ and why did you decide to go down a fantastical route?

We shot that over near Beachwood Canyon at the Bronson Bat Caves. I spent years hiking and brain storming up there. It was the cave from the old Batman series with Adam West. Shooting there was the most grueling but by far my favorite part of the shoot. It was 115 degrees in the dead of summer. We would shoot until five am. All the sweat you see is real. It was super intense and exhausting but I think it was the best time of my life. It felt so magical to me. We knew from the beginning we had to take it there in the story. It’s a slow build into this huge thing. I always love third acts that take it there…


Were you ever tempted, or put under pressure to change the title?

Many people definitely told us too, but it was always the kind of people that love to hear the sound of their own voice. They give opinions based on zero experience or fear of something being different or out they’re comfort zone.  It’s been nothing but good for us so far and has created nothing but attention and discussion for the film. We love it.


What do you hope audiences will take away from the film – apart from inspiration for some new Butt jokes!

We hope that people walk away feeling that they saw something that they have never seen before. We never set out to make something predictable. We wanted to hit new territory and we hope viewers can see that. We want people to think it’s ridiculous because it is. We want you to laugh, and enjoy our little weird ride.


Finally, what’s next for you?

I am currently finishing up two more screenplays and we are about to shoot a TV pilot based on our comedy channel ‘Tiny Cinema’ on Instagram. It’s sort of little extensions of what we did with the movie but with different jokes.


BUTT BOY is showing at the Glasgow Film Theatre on Saturday 7 March, 6.30pm, as part of Arrow Video FrightFest Glasgow 2020

Tickets: https://glasgowfilm.org/glasgow-film-festival/shows/frightfest

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

Interview with Julien Seri


It has been five years since NIGHT FARE premiered  at FrightFest London, what have you been up to since then?

I worked on two, very singular, projects as a producer and/or director. I signed for both with Wild Bunch, but we’ve failed to produce them yet. So I keep fighting. And I did a lot of commercials, TV series and music videos.


When did you first hear about the ANDERSON FALLS script and why did you think it was perfect for you to direct?

I received the script late 2017. I read it and said ‘yes’ in the same day. It was a perfect American experience for me because it was low budget, so not a lot of stress, and another type of movie for me - a slow burner and not an action thriller. I felt that I needed to test myself on this movie.


We are well acquainted with writer/producer Giles Daoust (RADIUS, STARRY EYES, HOSTILE, THE MAN WHO KILLED HITLER AND THEN THE BIGFOOT). Did you know him prior to ANDERSON FALLS?

We met through Facebook because he co-produced Hostile with two friends of mine who were co-producers on Night Fare. He saw Night Fare, was pretty impressed with the result, so he send me the script.


You have an amazing cast in ANDERSON FALLS – Gary Cole, Shawn Ashmore, Lin Shaye etc. – how easy was it to assemble?

Gary Cole saw Night Fare on Netflix US. He was the first one to respond. He said that he loved the poetical violence of the film. Then Shawn Ashmore saw it too. I had a conference/video call with Shawn. We connected instantly. Jessica Sherman was our casting director. She did a great job. Lin Shay, Daniella Alonso, Sonya Walger, Vahina Giocante, Richard Harmon, Stefania Spampinato, Judah Mackey. I was very lucky to work with this great cast for my first experience in the US.


Where did you film and for how long?

We prepped the film for two and a half weeks in July 2017, and we shot it in eighteen days in Los Angeles in August the same year. It was a hot and a very fast shoot.

(Shawn Ashmore in ANDERSON FALLS)

Any major problems during production or funny stories you can share?

The prep was really short and the shooting schedule very tight, but I had a lot of fun on the set. It was a blast. I decided to use this tight schedule as an advantage and to shoot no coverage for the edit room. I shot a fight scene (1’30”) in one long shot. Shawn was very excited with the idea, the stunt coordinator too. But some people on the crew were convinced that we wouldn’t be able to make it. Of course we did it. We shot it in one hour. Eight takes.


What would you say the hardest part about making ANDERSON FALLS was?

Post production was the most painful part for me. In France, the director is creatively the man in charge. He needs to work closely with his producer, but the film is his vision. With Anderson Falls, I knew from the start that it would be a possibility to have a completely different cut than mine, but I thought on the set, that I did enough to protect myself from that. I was wrong. Only the work with our composer, Sacha Chaban, was creatively fantastic.


How important are festivals to your work?

FrightFest was the first festival to respond to Night Fare with such positivity at the Cannes film festival in 2015. With those kind of indie movies, festivals are very important to make the films known worldwide. So I’m really excited to come back and to feel that FrightFest spirit again.


You have roughly six projects on the go at the moment. What can you tell us about your future plans and films?

I need to stay active and to express myself with a camera more than once every two or three years.

I have another American movie for late 2020 or 2021, Blank written by Jeremy Drysdale and produced by Sentient Pictures and Pierre Morel (Taken, Gunman). It’s an incredible action movie that we want to shoot in Asia. There’s also a Canadian thriller called Finding The Right Child at the casting stage.

And I will go back to the indie mood of Night Fare with one of my scripts - All We Have Left. I need to shoot a very personal story with my unique vision from time to time. My heart and mind need that. I also have a great project with Elodie Yung (Netflix’s Daredevil, The Hitman’s Bodyguard, Gods of Egypt) and Xavier Laurent (The Kid is not my Son). As a director I can shoot one or two films every year. That’s why I fell in love with commercials and now television too. You can stay active and continue to learn every month.


ANDERSON FALLS is showing at the Glasgow Film Theatre on Saturday 7 March, 11.00am, as part of Arrow Video FrightFest Glasgow 2020

Tickets: https://glasgowfilm.org/glasgow-film-festival/shows/frightfest

Tuesday, 4 February 2020

Interview with director Adam Stovall


Ahead of the World premiere of A GHOST WAITS at Arrow Video FrightFest Glasgow 2020, director Adam Stovall reflects on getting through depression,  creating paranormal romance and the influence of Tom Waits…


You have an interesting CV – from comedy theatre and film journalism to writing for The Hollywood Reporter and second assistant directing. Was all this a game plan to becoming a fully-fledged director?

I’ve known since I was a little kid sitting in the basement watching the network TV premiere of Back To The Future while holding my Back To The Future storybook and waiting for them to premiere the first footage from Back To The Future 2 during a commercial break that movies meant more to me than they did to those around me. And that’s not a low bar - my Dad worked as a projectionist all through his college years, and my Mom takes my Aunt to see at least one movie a week. I remember seeing Pulp Fiction in the autumn of 1994 and suddenly realizing that a) cinema is far more elastic than I had previously thought, and b) it helped the world make sense in a way nothing else could. That was when I knew this was my path.

But I grew up in Northern Kentucky, which felt like the furthest you could possibly get from Hollywood. I spent my 20s trying to do anything else and be happy, to no avail. Towards the end of my 20s, I was mired in a severe depression, getting wine drunk and writing scripts on the weekends. Then, my dog died, and it put into stark relief just how alone I was. So I sold as much of my stuff as I could and moved the rest to L.A. so I could pursue film.

Quickly I had the thought that I’d feel pretty stupid if I moved 2000 miles and just sat in my room, so I started volunteering in the Creative Screenwriting screening series. After eight months of that, I wrote for a magazine, which closed down, then a friend asked me to work on his movie. I was not supposed to be the 2nd AD, but they ended up with a budget far smaller than they thought they’d get, so as people left the production for higher-paying gigs, I kept getting promoted. It was an incredible experience, though, and the best education I could have asked for in terms of no-budget filmmaking. It clarified for me where money needed to go, and where money went out of habit.

So yeah, that’s a game plan…


Did the story of A GHOST WAITS come as a sudden flash; were you inspired by the likes of GHOST and BEETLEJUICE?

The idea for A Ghost Waits came from a video game and a web comic. I am not a gamer, but I was visiting some friends and they told me I needed to play a game called P.T. which was designed by Guillermo Del Toro and Hideo Kojima. It’s a first person puzzle game where you have to walk through an L-shaped hallway in a haunted house, doing specific things in time in order to open the door at the end of the hallway, which then puts you back at the beginning of the hallway.

Adam Stovall

At some point, it occurred to me that there might be a movie in someone like me having to deal with a haunted house. While I was working on that, I saw a Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal comic where a man asks a woman what she thinks is the most American film. She answers, “Ghostbusters,” and he asks why. She explains that people get demonstrable proof of an afterlife, but the whole thing is about growing a small business and navigating government bureaucracy. I thought, “That’s hilarious, and also I want to see that movie.” So I wrote it!


How long was the development process and where did you obtain financing?

Development on A Ghost Waits moved irresponsibly fast, haha. I had the idea in November 2015, and we shot in August 2016. Normally I have all the time in the world to write, since nobody cares about a spec script being written by a no-name, so the process of writing with so many eyes on me was equally exciting and daunting. Fun fact: I usually name characters and title the piece late in the process, but I wasn’t able to do that here since we needed to create documents for casting and whatnot. So I went home, opened up my Tom Waits discography, and named every character after a Tom Waits song. And then named the movie after him, because he is one of my creative north stars…

MacLeod and I had spent the previous year trying to get another movie made, but just weren’t able to raise enough money. One of the investors we met in that time remained very excited to make something, so when I had the idea for A Ghost Waits he immediately said he’d invest half the production budget. My Mom had told me to let her know when we had a firm budget number, so once we had half the budget, she invested the other half. That covered principal photography, and then MacLeod and I put in our own money to cover pickups and post-production.


How do you describe the movie, a supernatural comedy, a paranormal romance, what?

I’ve been referring to it as a haunted house love story, but paranormal romance is good - maybe I’ll start using that!


MacLeod Andrews & Natalie Walker in A GHOST WAITS

Was the choice to shoot in black-and-white more an artistic or budgetary consideration?

A bit of both, to be honest. I love the B&W aesthetic, so it was always a possibility in my mind, I mentioned my idea to my UPM during prep while we were on a location scout, and she told me not to do that. We shot in color with the intention of staying that way, but we also shot with two different cameras, the Blackmagic Ursa Mini and the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema, which yielded slightly different looks. I drove myself crazy trying to match the images in color-correction, and one day MacLeod said, “Have you thought about just making it B&W?” Because MacLeod is the best person ever. Once we put a B&W LUT on it, it felt right, tonally and aesthetically. Would we have gone with B&W even if we had more money? Who knows! Just another possibility for the pile…


When did you first meet MacLeod Andrews? He says you’ve wanted to make something together for years? So did you write the part of Jack with him in mind?

MacLeod and I met on the set of a film called Split, a bowling rom-com, which filmed in Louisville, KY. I met the filmmaker on a panel, and he asked if I’d be down to come work on his movie. MacLeod is a native of Louisville, and had worked with one of the producers on the film before. We instantly hit it off, and I was struck by his obvious talent and charisma so I sent him a script I’d recently written. He dug it, and we decided we wanted to work together.

I absolutely wrote the part of Jack for MacLeod. To the extent that if he’d said no, the movie would not exist. Fortunately our brains function on similarly weird frequencies, so we’re usually intrigued and excited by similar ideas.


What about Natalie Walker? How did you come to cast her as Muriel?

I’d been following Natalie on Twitter for a while, and was impressed by her humor and brilliance. I had a feeling that casting her in a role that demanded she sublimate her energy would yield a similar result as when Robin Williams was asked to do the same for dramatic roles. I emailed and told her about the project, and offered to send over the script so she could check it out and see if it interested her. She responded that she was very interested, so we talked and she did a self-tape, which was perfect. We hopped on FaceTime and I offered her the role.


The chemistry between MacLeod and Natalie is wonderful. Was that instant or did it need nurturing?

Instant! We never even had a table read, much less any rehearsals, so the first time they met was on set. Since we had such a small crew, I was always doing a multitude of jobs, which limited how much time I was able to spend with them. A lot of their dynamic is due to the work they did on their own. It is my profound hope that the three of us are able to work together again.


Where did you film and for how long?

We filmed in Cincinnati, OH, and Lakeside Park, KY. Principle photography was 12 days in August 2016, and then we did the first set of pickups over four days in April 2017 and the last set over a week in February 2018.


What does having the World Premiere at FrightFest Glasgow mean to you?

Cesar A. Cruz once said, “Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.” At my lowest, movies have made me feel less alone, and I wanted to make something that could do that for someone else. We made a small, personal, weird film, and it means the absolute world to know it means something to others and is finding its place in the world. Absolutely thrilled FrightFest get to show it first”.


Finally, what’s next for you?

We're working with a couple producers on two films, which we're obviously hoping to make soon. One is an existential horror drama, and the other is a coming-of-age comedy-drama. In the meantime, just writing a few things and hoping for the best.


A GHOST WAITS is showing at the Glasgow Film Theatre on Friday 6 March, 8.40pm, as part of Arrow Video FrightFest Glasgow 2020

Tickets: https://glasgowfilm.org/glasgow-film-festival/shows/frightfest

Monday, 3 February 2020

Competition: Win Under The Shadow on Blu-ray


Under The Shadow is released on Blu-ray on February 10th.


And to celebrate we have a great competition and 2 copies on Blu-ray to give away.

Synopsis
In 1988 Tehran, Shideh's attempts to rejoin medical school are thwarted as a consequence of her politically active history. Her husband is sent off to serve in the Iran-Iraq War while Iraqi air raids draw perilously close to their own apartment. As neighbours and friends flee from a city in chaos she is left alone with her daughter Dorsa who becomes increasingly ill and seemingly disturbed. Shideh initially dismisses her tantrums over a missing doll but is soon terrified they've been targeted by a djinn - a malevolent spirit that steals from those it seeks to possess.

Trailer

Click here to buy from Amazon (Opens in a new window)

For your chance to win both just answer the question below.

Who directed Under The Shadow?

Send your name, address and of course the answer to competition@mastersofhorror.co.uk

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 17-02-20
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Arrow Video FrightFest announces Glasgow Film Festival 2020 line-up


Welcome to the transgressive, the traumatic and the terrifying as Arrow Video FrightFest, the UK’s favourite horror fantasy event, returns to Glasgow Film Festival for a 15th fantastic year, from Thursday 5 March to Saturday 7 March, 2020.

Thirteen is lucky for some as that’s the number of new films being presented at the iconic Glasgow Film Theatre, embracing the latest genre discoveries from around the globe, spanning four continents, including one world, two European and seven UK  premieres.

Alan Jones, FrightFest co-director, commented: “Welcome to another banner FrightFest and another invitation to explore the horror fantasy genre’s fertile harvest bursting with creativity, imagination and difference in a world that often seems hostile to all three. So enjoy FrightFest Glasgow 2020: 13 new films from around the world guaranteed to offer a much-needed cinematic sanctuary”.

Hold on to your seats for the altered state sci-fi fantasy journey of your life! In a special Thursday night presentation, FrightFest reveals an exclusive brand new cut of co-directors Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead’s latest ethereal, existential mindbender SYNCHRONIC, starring Jamie Dornan and Anthony Mackie. Justin and Aaron plan to attend.

This is followed by the riveting horror mockumentary DEATH OF A VLOGGER, which comes home to Scotland following its hugely successful FrightFest August 2019 ‘First Blood’ debut. The director, Graham Hughes, and the cast will be attending – no doubt filming their every move…

Streaming a live exorcism? What could possibly go wrong? Friday kicks off with the UK Premiere of THE CLEANSING HOUR, a gory, scary and hugely entertaining horror comedy, directed by Damien LeVeck, where tech entrepreneurs meet evil head on. Then we have the European premiere of IN THE QUARRY, Uruguayan filmmakers Bernardo and Rafael Antonaccio’s penetrating look at gender roles and expectations is a tense and dynamic riff on the naturalistic heart-of-darkness genre.

Next up is the UK premiere of tense sci-horror thriller SEA FEVER, by award-winning Irish television director Neasa Hardiman. Connie Nielsen and Dougray Scott star as part of a marooned trawler crew struggling with a mysterious water-borne parasite.


The 8.45pm presentation is the World premiere of first-time director Adam Stovall’s remarkable comedy romance A GHOST WAITS. With hints of BEETLEJUICE and GHOST, it features a brilliant performance from MacLeod Andrews, star of THEY LOOK LIKE PEOPLE and THE SIREN. Adam and some of the crew will be there to introduce his film.

Rounding off the evening with an irresistible riff of humour, terror and squirm-inducing violence is the UK premiere of Ryan Spindell’s THE MORTUARY COLLECTION. With fabulous production design and a vibrant variety of tones, this wild ride completely pulls the rug out from under the audience.

Saturday's programme is a killer and the first film, ANDERSON FALLS, features director Julien Seri's high-tone brand of seat-edged thrills, starring Gary Cole and Scream Queen supreme Lin Shaye. Next, get ready for a dead funny zombie apocalypse as Living Dead lore explodes in a fun riff on the genre. The often hilarious ZOMBIE FOR SALE borrows from the best but South Korean director, Lee Min-Jae, making his film feature debut, adds his own startling twists to the beloved formula.


This is followed by the Scottish premiere of SAINT MAUD, a blistering debut from writer/director Rose Glass and a divine dive into obsession, isolation and urban deprivation, featuring a star-making performance from Morfydd Clark as the heartbreakingly conflicted Maud. Rose will be in attendance, alongside several of the producers.

The evening programme bursts into action with the European premiere of BUTT BOY, a surreal, bizarre and utterly unique viewing experience, in which a detective has to get to the bottom (literally) of a series of suspected murders. Directed by Tyler Cornack, imagine the indie lovechild of Quentin Dupieux and John Waters.


Next up is the UK premiere of VFW, directed by FrightFest Glasgow favourite Joe Begos. This break-neck action blood-blaster, pitching Vietnam vets against an army of punk mutants, is every bit as gobsmacking as his recent BLISS. Joe will be joining us.

This year’s feast of ferocious frights ends with the UK premiere of A NIGHT OF HORROR: NIGHTMARE RADIO, an anthology constructed by noted Argentinian duo Nicolas and Luciano Onetti (Francesca and Abrakadabra), who’ve assembled an impressive line-up of recent festival-touring horror shorts to deliver a refreshingly unique new kind of shock omnibus.

In addition, there are two fabulous shorts; Gustav Egerstedt’s LIVE FOREVER, a brilliant musical tribute to all the poor victims in horror films that didn't make it to the sequel, and BLEED, the latest from the talented Femme Collective – an anthology of six micro-shorts from emerging female directors which explore the horror of being a modern woman.

Plus, let’s not forget the great giveaways, surprise clips and Q & As!

FrightFest Weekend Passes are £75 and available from noon on Mon 20 January, 2020.  Passes will be exchanged for admission wristbands, which must be worn at all times to access all FrightFest films on Fri 6 March and Sat 7 March ONLY.

Tickets for SYNCHRONIC and DEATH OF A VLOGGER, plus individual tickets for the Fri/Sat films are on sale Mon 3 February, from noon. Price: £11.50. £9.30 concessions


How to Buy Tickets

Online: www.glasgowfilm.org/festival

Telephone: 0141 332 6535 (£1.50 fee per transaction, voice-mail available during peak business periods.

In person: Glasgow Film Theatre, 12 Rose Street, Glasgow G3 6RB during normal box office hours – Friday & Sunday to Thursday from 12:00 to 15 Minutes after the last performance starts. Saturday from 11am to 15 minutes after the last performance starts.


Booking opens Monday 3 February at 12:00

Online booking closes 15 minutes before the advertised start time.

All performances will start at the advertised start time. Late ticket-holders will not be admitted.


Programme details


THURS 5 MARCH – GFT Screen 1


20:30 SYNCHRONIC (UK Premiere)
Directors: Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead. Cast: Anthony Mackie, Jamie Dornan, Ally Ioannides. USA 2019. 100 mins. 18. Signature Entertainment.

Synopsis: Two New Orleans paramedics' lives are ripped apart after encountering a series of horrific deaths linked to a new designer drug with bizarre, otherworldly effects. So prepare to be re-dazzled by the brilliant auteurs of THE ENDLESS, SPRING and RESOLUTION inventively playing with time and space again, continuing to add layers of exhilarating ambition and stimulating creativity to their unique cinematic universe.


23:00 DEATH OF A VLOGGER (Scottish Premiere)
Director: Graham Hughes. Cast: Graham Hughes, Annabel Logan, Paddy Kondracki. UK 2019. 88 mins. 18. Enlightened Monster Productions.

Synopsis: A vlogger gains viral fame after one of his eerie videos contains an alleged out-of-this-world haunting. Following YouTuber Graham as he investigates the darker supernatural side of the web and dealing with the effects of being famous on the internet, this trip down a hellish rabbit hole includes interviews, cat videos, ripped YouTube content, fun nonsense, archive material, tension and unusual scares.


FRI 6 MARCH – GFT Screen 1


13:30 THE CLEANSING HOUR (UK Premiere) + LIVE FOREVER (Short)
Director: Damien LeVeck. Cast: Ryan Guzman, Kyle Gallner, Alix Angelis. USA 2019. 94 mins. 18. Shudder.

Synopsis: Best friends and millennial entrepreneurs Max and Drew run a popular webcast that streams live exorcisms. Of course they are all staged with terrific special effects but today, fate has a big twist in store. The actress hired to fake being possessed actually does become possessed by a real demon. Worse, the victim is Drew’s real girlfriend, Lane. Together the dumbstruck duo must work against the show clock to figure out the demon’s sinister motive, while the devilish succubus exposes the trio’s dark secrets before a rapidly growing global audience.


15:45 IN THE QUARRY (European Premiere)
Directors: Bernardo & Rafael Antonaccio. Cast: Paula Silva, Rafael Beltrán, Augusto Gordillo, Luis Pazos. Uruguay 2018. 82 mins. 18. Salco Films.

Synopsis: Excited to introduce her new boyfriend Bruno to her best friends, Alicia organizes a sun-drenched barbecue and swimming party at an abandoned quarry near her hometown they used to frequent as children. At first, it’s all good times, but as the day progresses, secrets are revealed, macho bravado and jealousy appears and bonds are broken. And soon an act of brutality unleashes everyone’s true natures.


18:15 SEA FEVER (UK Premiere)
Director: Neasa Hardiman. Cast: Hermione Corfield, Dougray Scott, Connie Nielsen. Ireland/Sweden/Belgium 2019. 91 mins. 18. Signature Films.

Synopsis: For marine biology student Siobhan, it was supposed to be a research excursion with a trawler crew fishing the West Irish seas. But when they hit an unseen object and become marooned, a mysterious parasite infects their water supply. Soon the oozing force infiltrates the entire vessel and turns Siobhan’s journey into a claustrophobic fight for survival.


20:45 A GHOST WAITS (World Premiere)
Director: Adam Stovall. Cast: MacLeod Andrews, Natalie Walker, Sydney Vollmer. USA 2020. 79 mins. 18. Plum St. Productions and Rebecca Fims.

Synopsis: Jack's job is to fix up the house. Spectral agent Muriel's eternal task is to haunt it. They should be enemies, but they become fascinated by one another and eventually smitten, leading them to question everything about their work, lives, and decisions. But as pressure mounts for them to fulfill their duties, something’s got to give for them to have the time together they both so desperately want.


22:50 THE MORTUARY COLLECTION (UK Premiere)
Director: Ryan Spindell. Cast: Clancy Brown, Caitlin Custer, Christine Kilmer. USA 2019. 108 mins. 18. Trapdoor Pictures.

Synopsis: Sam inquires about a ‘Help Wanted’ sign outside a funeral home and in her interview with owner Montgomery Dark, four gruesomely disturbing stories are told. Moving chronologically from the 1950s to the 80s, a housewife finds a mysterious presence in her bathroom, a college boy gets a taste of his own fraternizing medicine, a husband makes tough decisions about his wife and babysitters are murdered by a homicidal maniac.


SAT 7 MARCH – GFT Screen 1


11:00 ANDERSON FALLS (UK Premiere) + FATALE COLLECTIVE: BLEED (Short)
Director: Julien Seri. Cast: Shawn Ashmore, Gary Cole, Lin Shaye. Belgium 2019. 84 mins. 18. WTF Films.

Synopsis: After his wife's sudden suicide, Detective Jeff Anderson (Shawn Ashmore from the X-MEN franchise) becomes convinced that she has really been murdered. Obsessed with his ongoing investigations, he finds out that she was indeed the victim of a heinous crime. And although no one believes what he’s uncovered, Jeff knows he’ll have to break all the rules and go to horrendous extremes to stop the slaughter of other women.


13:15 ZOMBIE FOR SALE (Scottish Premiere)
Director: Lee Min-Jae. Cast: Jae-yeong Jeong, Ga-ram Jung, Nam-gil Kim. South Korea 2019. 112 mins. 18. Arrow Films.

Synopsis: Korea’s biggest pharmaceutical company conducts illegal experiments on humans. One test goes wrong and creates a sexy zombie who escapes and winds up with the crazy Park family, owners of a country gas station. But when the head of the household is bitten, it restores his youth, so they monetise Zzong- bie’s powers to help their struggling business. Events take a grisly turn for the worse…


15:45 SAINT MAUD (Scottish Premiere)
Director: Rose Glass. Cast: Morfydd Clark, Jennifer Ehle, Lily Frazer. UK 2019. 83 mins. 18. Studio Canal.

Synopsis: Recently Born Again, Maud is a young Scarborough nurse, visibly disintegrating both mentally and emotionally as she strives for religious salvation from the demons plaguing her. Put in charge of caring for hedonistic dancer Amanda, now in the late stages of a terminal illness, Maud believes redemption is at hand. For if Maud can rescue Amanda’s soul then surely she can save herself?


18:30 BUTT BOY (European Premiere)
Director: Tyler Cornack. Cast: Tyler Cornack, Tyler Rice, Shelby Dash. USA 2019. 100 mins. 18. Tiny Cinema.

Synopsis: Middle-aged Chip Gutchell is bored and miserable with his life, until he has a prostate examination and his whole world changes. For he becomes obsessed with putting anything and everything up his butt including living things. Newly sober Detective Russell Fox suspects his AA sponsor is sporting another supernatural dimension in his rear end but even he has no idea the insanity that awaits when he dives into his investigation headfirst.


21:00 VFW (UK Premiere)
Director: Joe Begos. Cast: Stephen Lang, Martin Kove, William Sadler. USA 2019. 92 mins. 18. Movie Partnership.

Synopsis: Set in the near future, where a designer drug is causing devastation, death and destruction reign supreme. Caught in a deal that goes horrifyingly wrong, innocent Lizard flees to a local VFW post where war veterans begin the ferocious fight with a deranged drug dealer and his relentless army of punk mutants. These Vietnam vets have been to hell and back but tonight will be the longest night of their lives.



23:10 A NIGHT OF HORROR: NIGHTMARE RADIO (UK Premiere)
Directors: Luciano & Nicolás Onetti, Sergio Morcillo, Joshua Long, Jason Bognacki, Adam O´Brien, Matt Richards, A.J. Briones, Pablo S. Pastor & Oliver Park. Cast: Clara Kovacic, James Wright, Kera Obryon. Argentina/New Zealand 2019. 100 mins. 18. Black Mandala.

Synopsis: As the host of a popular horror-themed radio show, disc jockey Rod Wilson shares tales of terror with his eager listeners. But tonight the announcer begins to receive strange calls from a child who desperately asks for help. At first he thinks it’s a bad joke until he discovers the calls hide a dark secret…


For full programme details: http://www.frightfest.co.uk

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Horror Channel marks February weekends with eight action-packed premieres


Killer parties, virtual dinosaurs, zombie flesh-eaters and Milla Jovovich in top form…Horror Channel makes February an action-packed month with eight premieres, including the UK TV premiere of Matty Beckerman’s savage sorority slasher THE ROW and the channel premieres of Simeon Halligan’s neon-drenched Mancunian horror thriller HABIT, starring Elliot James Langridge, Roxanne Pallett and Jessica Barden. Plus there’s the eerie psychological thriller CAN’T COME OUT TO PLAY, directed by John McNaughton (Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer), starring Samantha Morton, Michael Shannon and Peter Fonda.

There are also Channel premieres for the 2019 version of CABIN FEVER, a remake of Eil Roth's 2002 film and written by him; Scott Derrickson’s supernatural chiller DELIVER US FROM EVIL, starring Eric Bana, futuristic survivalist thriller THE JURASIC GAMES, fiery revenge horror THE BURNING and Milla Jovovich is back in RESIDENT EVIL: EXTINCTION, the third chapter of the hugely successful Resident Evil franchise.


Full film details in transmission order:.

Fri 7 Feb @ 21:00 – CABIN FEVER (2016) *Channel Premiere

A forest-dwelling hermit discovers his dog has died from a mysterious illness and gets sprayed by its infected blood. Meanwhile, five young friends, fresh out of college, have rented a cabin in the same woods for a week-long vacation. It’s not long before the group have to face the horrors of a flesh-eating virus …


Sat 8 Feb @ 21:00 – CAN’T COME OUT TO PLAY (2013) * Channel premiere

Samantha Morton and Michael Shannon play married medical professionals Katharine and Richard who keep their sick son Andy isolated from the outside world in their remote countryside house. When young Maryann moves in with her grandparents close by, her attempts to befriend the clearly lonely Andy are met with vehement resistance. But Maryann finds more inventive ways to circumvent their watchful eyes until one day she is forced to hide in the house and discovers the basement. There she finds a terrible secret… but even then can’t imagine the shocking truth behind it.


Fri 14 Feb @ 22:50 – HABIT (2017) *Channel Premiere

Michael (Elliot James Langridge), jobless and down on his luck, is irresistibly drawn into Manchester’s seedy underworld. After getting a job as a doorman at Cloud 9 massage parlour, he is lured into a secret subculture and groomed by his new ‘family’, who have a dark secret; a bloody addiction that they intend Michael to share.


Sat 15 Feb @ 21:00 – DELIVER US FROM EVIL (2014) *Channel Premiere

New York police officer Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana), who is struggling with personal issues, begins investigating a series of disturbing and inexplicable crimes.  He joins forces with an unconventional priest (Edgar Ramírez), schooled in the rituals of exorcism, to combat the frightening and demonic possessions that are terrorising their city.


Fri 21 Feb @ 21:00 – THE JURASSIC GAMES (2018) *Channel Premiere

Every year, ten of the world’s most dangerous criminals are chosen to compete for their freedom in The Jurassic Games, a virtual reality television show where contestants must survive in a world full of velociraptors, t-rex's and other ferocious dinosaurs. Die in the game, and you die in real life.


Sat 22 Feb @ 22:35 – THE BURNING (1981) *Channel Premiere

At summer camp, some teenagers pull a prank on the camp's caretaker, Cropsy (Lou David). But the joke goes terribly wrong, and the teens leave Cropsy for dead after setting him on fire. A few years later, the burned and disfigured caretaker returns to camp equipped with his trusty shears, ready to unleash his particular brand of vengeance…


Fri 28 Feb @ 22:50 – THE ROW (2018) *UK TV Premiere

The anxiety of rush week turns into sheer terror when sisters of a sorority are slain—and turned into dolls— by a serial killer. New pledge Riley (Lala Kent) and her best friend Becks (Mia Frampton) must endure late-night hazing rituals as the murderer watches and waits. Can she uncover the terrible secret shared by parents before becoming a victim herself?


Sat 29 Feb @ 21:00 – RESIDENT EVIL: EXTINCTION (2007) *Channel Premiere

Survivors of the Raccoon City catastrophe travel across the Nevada desert, hoping to make it to Alaska. Alice (Milla Jovovich) joins the caravan and their fight against the evil Umbrella Corp and their plan to replace humankind with a race of undead clones.

Horror Channel: Be Afraid
TV: Sky 317 / Virgin 149 / Freeview 70 / Freesat 138
Website: http://www.horrorchannel.co.uk/

Monday, 6 January 2020

Horror Channel beams in Captain Sulu for GEORGE TAKEI SELECTS STAR TREK on Saturday January 25.


George Takei, the legendary Star Trek actor, personally introduces some of his favourite Sulu episodes from the Original Series. “George Takei Selects Star Trek” will take over Horror Channel on Saturday 25 January, from 3pm, showing four specially selected episodes from Seasons 1 and 2 of STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES.


Full film details in transmission order:


15:00 STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES – THE NAKED TIME

A rescue party goes to save some scientists on a dying planet, but they are all dead when the team arrives. Can McCoy save the day?


16:05 STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES – SHORE LEAVE

The crew enjoy some downtime on a peaceful planet - what could possibly go wrong?


17:10 STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES – THE RETURN OF THE ARCHONS

The crew go in search of the lost USS Archon on the planet Beta III, but they find something much more troubling.


18:15 STAR TREK: THE ORIGINAL SERIES – MIRROR, MIRROR

Kirk, McCoy, Scotty and Uhura end up beamed to an alternative reality, with vicious twins as company..


Horror Channel: Be Afraid
TV: Sky 317 / Virgin 149 / Freeview 70 / Freesat 138
Website: http://www.horrorchannel.co.uk/

Monday, 30 December 2019

Competition: Win Asylum & The House That Dripped Blood on Blu-Ray



Asylum - [Blu-ray] and The House That Dripped Blood - [Blu-ray] are both released on 6th January 2020

And to celebrate we have a great competition and a copy of each on Blu-ray to give away.

Synopsis - Asylum 
From writer Robert Bloch and directed by Roy Ward Baker (A Night to Remember), iconic 1972 Amicus horror anthology Asylum is set for the Limited Edition Blu-ray treatment from Second Sight.

This hugely anticipated release starring a stellar cast will be presented in stunning rigid slipcase packaging featuring new artwork by Graham Humphreys, and a 40-page booklet with new essays by Allan Bryce, Jon Towlson and Kat Ellinger, not to mention a whole host of special features including director commentaries and featurettes, it will available from 29 July 2019.

When Doctor Martin (Robert Powell – The Italian Job, The Thirty Nine Steps) arrives for a job interview at a secluded asylum for the incurably insane, he must prove himself by listening to the macabre tales of four inmates to determine which is the former head of the asylum who experienced a breakdown. We join him on the investigation with these hair-raising horrors…

The all-star cast includes Barbara Parkins, Peter Cushing, Charlotte Rampling, Britt Ekland, Herbert Lom and Patrick Magee.

Synopsis - The House That Dripped Blood
The House That Dripped Blood from Peter Duffell in his directorial debut and written by renowned screenwriter Robert Bloch (Psycho), is set for one of Second Sight’s renowned must-have Limited Edition Blu-ray releases this Summer.

This star-studded anthology features Denholm Elliott, Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, Jon Pertwee and Ingrid Pitt and is presented in a stunning box set featuring original artwork from Graham Humphreys alongside a whole host of fantastic new special features including new essays from horror aficionados and a 40-page booklet and is available from 29 July 2019.

Scotland Yard’s Inspector Holloway (John Bennett – Watership Down, The Fifth Element) investigates a mysterious mansion with a ghoulish history and a chilling fate for its occupants in these four tales of terror…

Click here to buy The House That Dripped Blood from Amazon (Opens in a new window)
Click here to buy Asylum from Amazon (Opens in a new window)

COMPETITION CLOSED

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 13-01-20
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Sunday, 15 December 2019

Interview with Carver Pike By David Kempf


When did you first become interested in writing?

For me, storytelling came long before the actual writing part. I spent a great deal of my childhood in rough situations and a big portion of that restricted to my bedroom. That left me alone with my imagination and whatever I could find to occupy my time. My toys were a random hodgepodge of hand-me-downs. Maybe a couple of He-Man characters, Snake Eyes from G.I. Joe, a handful of those tiny pink rubber M.U.S.C.L.E. action figures, and whatever else I could piece together.

While most kids played war, I created strange worlds and storylines that would find all my toys in a crashed spaceship atop my mattress, with blankets serving as mountains, and the floor a strange alien goo that would infect anyone who touched it. When my toys were taken away, I cut paper dolls out of the Sears catalog and continued my narrative. I wrote action-packed zombie stories and other horrifying tales long before I ever picked up a pen.

The actual writing part happened when I was about sixteen, had just learned to type without looking at a keyboard, and stumbled upon my grandfather’s old typewriter hidden beneath a blanket in a back bedroom. My story sucked. It was a young adult, slice-of-life novel about a teenage boy who was new to town. Of course, all the girls liked him, and all the guys wanted to fight him, but he was a real badass and mopped the floor with all the bullies. The story really was garbage, so that’s where I eventually tossed it. However, throughout my junior and senior years of high school, I passed the novel around in spiral notebooks. If it weren’t for my female classmates showing so much interest in it, I probably wouldn’t be writing today.


How did you get involved in fantasy/horror?

I can’t remember not being interested in fantasy and horror. As a kid, I’d sit cross-legged in front of the TV watching everything from The Beastmaster, Krull, and Trancers to Friday the 13th, My Bloody Valentine, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. With every episode of Scooby-Doo, I prayed it would finally be the time they’d try to yank the mask off the ghost and find that it actually was a demonic presence instead of a jealous hotel caretaker.

Do you remember Commander USA? You know, the guy with cigar ash on the palm of his hand that was made to look like eyes and a mouth – kind of looked like Wilson in the movie Cast Away now that I think about it. He dressed up as a superhero of sorts and played horror movies every Saturday. That guy was my hero. I think I saw Kingdom of the Spiders on his show. Years later, I lay awake in bed terrified as I stared up at the popcorn ceiling and wondered if those little balls would burst open and a thousand tiny spiders would rain down over my bed. Shit. It still gives me the chills.


How would you classify the genre you write?

That’s a tough question to answer. I write a little bit of everything. I guess I’d say fairly graphic horror. I can’t really restrict myself by saying I write only ghost stories, slasher books, or zombies. Each one of my books is different. In my Diablo Snuff series, for example, it all revolves around a demonic entity of sorts that grows with each book. You get to see just how sinister this Diablo Snuff organization is and just how far it’ll go to destroy our world. Each book in the series is slightly different from the other. In book one, A Foreign Evil, the story takes place in Panama where a guy named Michael meets a beautiful woman and ends up at a hotel (run by Diablo Snuff). It’s not quite the romantic night he’s expecting. The sequel, The Grindhouse, is about a horror author who attends an author retreat run by Diablo Snuff.

Shadow Puppets: Scarecrows of Minnow Ranch is about, you guessed it, scarecrows. Redgrave revolves around a female military member doing her best to prove herself in a man’s military. She accepts an overnight, unarmed post guarding a demented inmate. Grad Night, which is my newest novel, centers around today’s youth and the violence in our schools. It’s not quite what you’d think though. This one’s more about teenagers getting revenge against their teachers. It’s some pretty sick shit.

Then there’s my dark fantasy series, The Edge of Reflection. So far, I’ve written four books in the series and have plans for a few more. I love dark fantasy. Blending action with horror and other supernatural elements is kind of like the best of all worlds to me.


Why do you think horror and fantasy books remain so popular?

I think it’s the safety net they provide. It’s a chance for the reader to safely experience risk, fear, loss, revenge, true hatred, and utter helplessness without crossing any moral boundaries or putting themselves in harm’s way. When I was a kid, I would often play the what if game. I think many people did and still do. Horror and fantasy allow people to revisit the fun in that game.

What if when I went to sleep at night, a monster visited me, and I’d die if I didn’t wake up before it killed me?

What if a great white shark attacked the beach today?

What if my daughter suddenly became possessed by a demon?

The horror and fantasy genres give you permission to play again.


What inspires your stories?

Oh, man. Everything! Seriously. Music definitely helps. The right song can totally spark a new idea. Another might help me through a scene. A movie might do it for me. I was watching The Green Mile the other night, and I got a story idea that has nothing at all to do with the movie itself. It’ll be an awesome horror book if I ever get around to writing it. You should see my list of word docs and book covers. Back to inspiration, I mean it when I say everything. I’ve looked at a homeless person before and decided I was going to tell his story. Right now, I live overseas, down in my wife’s country in Central America, so a lot of my inspiration comes from the world around me.


What do you think the difference between American horror and British horror is?

The thought never crossed my mind until I saw the “American Horror” classification on Amazon. I honestly don’t know. Oh, boy. Here I go, David. If this comes out sounding ridiculous, you have to edit it out. Ha.

If I had to take a wild guess, I think I’d say that America is still very young in the grand scheme of things. So, maybe American Horror would be more along the lines of things like Native American tales or gothic horror inspired by things like the growth of the original colonies (witch trials, slave tales, etc.).

So, what about British Horror then? Again, I’m totally guessing. I suppose I could cheat and Google this, but the first thing that comes to mind is old slasher stories like Jack the Ripper. Maybe stories about the plague, hauntings in old cobble-stoned and crowded cities, or even Medieval horror.

I’ve been to England a few times, and I could be wrong about this, but I got an overall feeling that the people were much more open to horror there. The selection available in the bookstores was all the evidence I needed. For example, I picked up Grady Hendrix’s My Best Friend’s Exorcism there, because I saw that awesome, 80s VHS style book cover on an end-cap at Waterstones. Fast forward to less than a year ago when I was inside a Barnes & Noble in San Jose, California. I had a hell of a time finding horror. It seemed like the horror books were mixed in with fantasy and suspense thrillers.


What are your favorite horror books?

I like a lot of the old short stories written by Ray Bradbury and Shirley Jackson. I Am Legend by Richard Matheson was great. Through my young teenage years, I read a lot of novelizations of films. I think it was my way of cheating and basically watching movies in class. I remember reading The Lost Boys, Friday the 13th part 6, and Nicholas Grabowsky’s novelization of Halloween 4.

I’m also a fan of Bentley Little’s stuff. I like the creeping dread in his books. My favorites of his would be The Association, The Store, and Death Instinct. I loved Stephen King’s It and The Stand. I’ve been trying to read newer authors lately. Recently, I enjoyed The Troop by Nick Cutter. Parasites scare the hell out of me. I hate the thought of something so small causing so much damage. Bird Box by Josh Malerman was a great book. I’ve been listening to Robert McCammon’s Swan Song on audiobook and it’s pretty good so far.


What are some of your favorite horror movies?

Demons and Demons 2 by Dario Argento will always hold a special place in my heart because they scared the shit out of me as a kid. I love everything to do with the Halloween movies. I may get booed for this one, but my favorite in the series is actually Halloween 4. I love when evil isn’t explained. Sometimes there’s need for it, but other times, just let us believe that evil is evil and that’s all there is to it. The Shape aka Michael Myers is evil personified. The Conjuring 2 is one of my newer favorites, and I absolutely loved Midsommar.


What do you consider your greatest accomplishment as an author?

I wish I could say I’ve won some prestigious award. I’ve won a few online awards voted on by readers, but I think my greatest accomplishment so far has just been finishing books. I’ve written about twelve books so far under Carver Pike. I’ve dabbled in other genres with other pen names too, and in total, I want to say I’ve published around 30 books. I’m proud of that.

Probably more important than all of that is knowing that my kids see me writing. They know I struggle. They’ve witnessed some of the depression that kicks in sometimes, they’ve watched me push through chronic pain, and through all of it they’ve seen me keep fighting to follow this dream of mine. I’m an author. I’m a writer. At this point, nothing will change that. Whether or not I become a big name in the business is still to be seen, but at least my kids saw that I was an author.


Do you have any advice for new writers?

Yes, three things. First, keep writing. Stop rereading everything you write. Of course, editing your work is important, but the truth is, you’ll edit it again when you’re finished anyway. If you keep rereading the last chapter and keep fiddling with the work you’ve already done, you’ll never write the next chapter. You need to write forward. The only way you’re going to punch out another book is if you stop allowing yourself to constantly edit. Just write. Edit when you’re done.

Second, stop throwing your words away. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard other authors say, “I read through what I wrote yesterday, and it was such crap. I deleted it all.” It probably wasn’t crap. Maybe you were being hard on yourself. That three thousand words you deleted might not have worked in this current story, but that could have been the first three thousand words in your next book. Open up a blank document and save your words for later rather than getting rid of them forever.

Third, criticism is important when it’s constructive. But even constructive criticism isn’t always right. You’d seek a second opinion for medical related matters, right? Treat your words the same way. Don’t take the scalpel to them just because one person told you they didn’t like them. I had two beta readers tell me they weren’t feeling a book I wrote. They didn’t love it. It gutted me. These were two fans of mine, and I almost didn’t publish the book. In the end, I did, and it became one of my most popular books at the time. Everyone else seemed to love it. I beat myself up for nothing.


What is your opinion of the new self-publishing trend?

Hmm. Interesting question. I’m self-published, so I love having the opportunity, but don’t get me wrong, there are definitely some problems caused by self-publishing too. I started out writing screenplays. That’s what I wanted to do for a living. This was before I got serious about writing books. Hollywood wasn’t beating down my door, screenplay competitions can be costly (and time consuming), and producing your own movie isn’t all that affordable. So, I started writing books. I queried a ton of agents and got plenty of rejection letters. I eventually signed with a small publishing house. It wasn’t the greatest experience. In the end, I heard about Amazon allowing authors to self-publish their books, so I decided to go that route. It’s a lot of hard work with nobody in your corner. Of course, I have some really great readers and friends who’ve volunteered their time to help with everything from beta reading to book covers to social media marketing, but it’s a long and grueling process.

Competition is fierce, and I’m sorry to say, but the quality often suffers with indie publishing. Oftentimes, sales go to the author with the biggest purse. If you can afford to throw thousands and thousands of dollars at marketing, you can climb the ranks even with a lackluster product. It’s the sad truth.

Self-publishing has also caused the industry to turn into a well-oiled machine at this point. To be able to tread water, you need to be able to publish books quickly. Gone are the days of authors being able to work on a book for several years. If you’re not already a big, established name in the biz, you’re probably going to have to write several books a year. I know several authors publishing a book a month.

In the end, I think if you’re able to get noticed by a big publisher, it’s still worth it if you hope to make it into the big arena. Having that support team and assistance with things like formatting, cover design, and editing is a big help. For now, I’ll keep doing what I’m doing unless someone reaches out to me.


What are your current projects?

I published Grad Night in October, so that’s my newest release. I’m currently working on several books. One of the characters from my Diablo Snuff series, a guy named Kong, is getting his own side story. That one’s called Slaughter Box and should be out soon. The Maddening: Diablo Snuff 3 is on its way too. I’ve got so many other books in the works, many of which I’m afraid to talk too much about, but one has something to do with witches and Santeria. That book is going to be intense. It’s the first book that kind of scares me writing it. I might be turning one of my old zombie screenplays into a novel soon. I’m planning to write a full-length novel based on the inmate in my book, Redgrave.


Please in your own words, write a paragraph about yourself & your work. 

I’m married with four kids. I’ve experienced a lot in my forty years. After serving time in the military and then giving the retail world a try, I decided to move to my wife’s country where she could be closer to her family. I figured I could write from anywhere, so she might as well be where she’s happiest. I’m a very down-to-earth, chill kind of guy. I believe in the overall goodness of people, but real evil exists and there isn’t always an explainable reason for it. These themes often find their way into my books. My writing has been described as cinemascope and my dialogue as real and genuine. Most of my work has very graphic sex and violence, but I’ve found those things fit well with my horror and dark fantasy storylines. Overall, I love to entertain. I’ll watch movies I love a hundred times if it means I get to see the look on someone else’s face when they’re experiencing it for the first time. I approach my books the same way. I need to know people are enjoying it, or it’s all for nothing. Hopefully, you’ll give me the chance to entertain.

Links:
Grad Night Paperback - Amazon
Good Reads - Carver Pike