On the eve of Horror Channel’s network premiere screening of THE LESSON, director Ruth Platt talks about the decision to quit RADA, why her film isn’t ‘torture porn’ and what the future holds

The Lesson received its World Premiere at FrightFest. How did you react when it was chosen? And what was the experience like?

I was really excited when I found out we’d been picked – we got a call from the team, and they were passionate about the film, and they are such a knowledgable and experienced small team, Greg, Paul, Alan and Ian, and it meant so much. Especially when the making of it had been such an arduous and difficult process! I had no idea how people would react to the film – it was such a tiny budget, and put together on sheer determination rather than any actual means. But the whole FrightFest festival was amazing – the fans were so supportive and friendly, and the reception to the film was so generous, it was a really brilliant experience.

How did you develop the idea for the film? Did your own experiences at school influence the story?

So my love of the horror genre stems from the satirical, metaphorical nature of the genre – how you can make a comment or observation about society, or about human nature, through the lens of horror – it is quite an expressionistic and stylised way of looking at the world, but quite a cathartic one, exorcising your deepest concerns, fears, and anger, I think! I have done a bit of teaching, though only peripatetic. I wasn’t trying to exorcise my real desires to torture students, as some people might think! It was more an observation on the educational system and its failures, and also a psychological study of class dynamics, stemming also from my experiences at school.
The teacher role was inspired by two things – there was a teacher I had at school, and the class just knew, subconsciously and collectively, that we could push him further than we could push the average teacher. There was an innate vulnerability to him, a fear of us, if you like, that allowed the class to behave in a much more difficult way. My film was a bit of a ‘what if’ scenario – what if that teacher we locked in the cupboard snapped? There was an article I read a few years back about a teacher who did just that, without any history of violence or bad conduct – and who harmed a teenage boy at school badly. That was my second inspiration. The two ideas together created Mr Gale.

The violence in the film is mostly inflicted by a school teacher on two 16 year-old schoolboys. Do you think this makes it even more controversial and difficult to watch?

I think, and I did worry beforehand, that people would take it literally, It is meant to be a deliberate satire on the torture porn genre. It has moral ambiguity and complexity, certainly, I mean hopefully, and those that like the film seem to get this, your sympathies keep changing to and fro, from the teacher to the kids. Mr Gale gets his comeuppance!. I think The Lesson is pretty measured violence-wise – you look at 15 films like The Babysitter and Deadpool and my god, the violence, and it is so slick, so easy. That makes me uncomfortable. The violence in The Lesson is hopefully earned, and deliberately difficult to watch. There is no easy, shiny violence.

What lessons do you want people to take from the film?

Ha! Well, I guess I want people to think about the education system, where its failings lie, how a school is a microcosm of society, and without an all encompassing and deep rooted culture of mutual respect, responsibility and kindness, it can go badly wrong. But I didn’t want to do that in a straightforward way, but rather through the horror lens. Some people seem to find it really cathartic to see these difficult kids tortured which is a bit disconcerting! I guess films like Fritz Lang’s M are pertinent and influential – that moral ambiguity certainly – the scene where all the criminals in the area capture this mentally ill, but hideous child murderer, and they are relishing the power they have in their kangaroo court – the hypocrisy and the savagery of all of them. Reminds me of Social Media!

The film has been described many ways, ranging from “Kitchen-sink torture porn” to “bravura art-house horror”. How would you describe it?

Satirical anti-torture porn? Though I love the kitchen-sink bit and the art house bit obviously!
The casting is particularly brave, allowing young unknowns to flourish and excel. How difficult was the audition process?
Well – I had the tiniest budget so there was no casting director involved. All the kids were local, untrained kids. They were brilliant actually. They started with loads of stagey acting, and then I had to strip it down – they got it so quickly though and loved the process. I knew Evan already [who plays Fin] as I had already cast him in a music video – he was so hardworking and conscientious. I was lucky enough to go into a local college and have an audition with the young people studying Drama there. Rory [who plays Joel] shone immediately – he took my direction, and his truth of thought and quickness of mind was evident straight away in improvisations. I was lucky to find him – about a week before shooting! Mischa I cast very last minute too, I auditioned her on skype after we had started shooting! She was a drama student at the Prague conservatoire. She was very natural and very lovely – and just astonishingly beautiful, I thought. Her separateness and her measured silence to me was indicative of what it is to be a woman in a man’s society. She of course, is Fin’s knight in shining armour, at the end of the day, but she is vulnerable, she has to compromise to survive. I thought Mischa had a beautiful stillness that was very watchable.

You’ve been a successful actor yourself, having won a scholarship to train at RADA. But is it true you left in your second year to start up a theatre company? And will we see you tread the boards again?

Well I wasn’t that successful! I adored acting, but I was a very insecure person as an actor. I remember being called to an audition, by my agent, for a music video, and asked by 3 men to lap dance on a chair. I wished I had just told them to fuck off. But I didn’t – I needed to pay the rent, and didn’t want to annoy my agent. So I did it. That happened a lot. As an actress you have to have an innate confidence that I really didn’t have. I absolutely adored RADA, and as soon as I left, I realised what an idiot I had been to leave in my second year. I fell into a deep depression – I was utterly broke, I had given up a scholarship, my mother was very ill, it all went wrong. I rang them and begged them to take me back but they had given my scholarship to someone else, and I couldn’t afford to go back. But it was during my experiences forming a theatre company that I started to realise that I loved writing and later, when I found my confidence, directing.
What I adore about directing is being able to guide an actor through each thought process, each moment of subtext, each emotional beat and each character trait, and I can do that because of my actor training. That is a really rewarding experience, and it is why I also enjoy working with new, untrained actors. Being an actor I think is terrifying – you are so vulnerable, and especially as an actress, I mean I know it is getting better but sexism and harrassment is rife, absolutely endemic, though it has now suddenly exploded into the public consciousness and will probably now improve. But you really need to have balls of steel.

Who are your strongest influences in the horror genre and what’s been your favourite horror film this year?

‘Haneke’s ‘Funny Games’ [the original German language one] is my favourite horror film of all time. I guess that is what inspired my anti-torture porn premise. The violence in that film could not be more uncomfortable and less gratuitous to watch – Haneke is a genius. A close second, though not usually classified as a genre film, is Yorgos Lanthimos’ ‘Dogtooth’. One of the most brilliant, piercing satires I have ever seen. I adore ‘Nosferatu’, and Fritz Lang’s ‘M’.
This year, I loved ‘Raw’, which I I think it is one of the greatest female horror films of all time – the central metaphor of an impossibly high-achieving girl, with the absolute rigid self discipline, that starts to discover her emerging sexuality and rage – so bloody, sharply funny. And the cinematography – I’m in awe of it!

Finally, what can you tell us about your next project?

I have been in development with the BFI for a year now, so hoping to shoot something next year! It is a horror, but one that has a very detailed, socio-realistic world. And the whole thing is through the eyes of a child. It is also a largely female cast. Looking forward to making it so much, so wish me luck!

The Lesson is broadcast on Sat 9 Dec, 10.45pm, Horror Channel.

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Theatre News (UK): Derren Brown announces UNDERGROUND tour dates for 2018

Derren Brown, the multi-award winning master of mind control and psychological illusion, is bringing his latest sensational show UNDERGROUND back to UK and Irish theatres in 2018.

From April 3 to July 5 2018, Brown will be enthralling audiences with his 2017 ‘Best of’ hit show, UNDERGROUND in which he fuses together a collection of his favourite work to create a jaw-dropping experience of magical genius.

Tickets on sale from today*

Derren revealed : “Underground was originally written for audiences in other countries who hadn’t seen me before. It meant finessing and re-visiting past pieces and seeing them with fresh eyes.

I sat down with my two co-writers and directors and we thought – ‘What would make the best possible Derren Brown show?’ None of us were sure what the UK would make of it, but the resulting show felt so good, and met with such a great response when warming it up in London, that we decided to tour it here too. The reviews have been astonishing, and people who’ve seen all the shows have said they love being surprised by them again, and those who don’t know me so well are getting to see the best material for the first time. It’s a huge, huge joy to perform”.

This is the second leg of the UNDERGROUND tour, direct from the West End production at the Playhouse Theatre, which ran for thirty-five packed out performances in September & October 2017. The sixty-three day tour will embrace Dublin and Cork and include Belfast, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, Norwich Hull, Canterbury, Nottingham, Eastbourne, Bournemouth, Dartford and Southend.

Derren’s live shows have won him two prestigious Olivier Awards – Something Wicked This Way Comes (2006) and Svengali (2012). He has played to sold-out houses across the country every year since 2003 to over 1.5M people. His previous UK shows, Infamous, (2013, 2014), Miracle (2015, 2016) have toured to great success, enjoying critically acclaimed seasons in the West End of London. He recently made an enthusiastically embraced stage debut at the Atlantic Theater in New York with Derren Brown: Secret.

DERREN BROWN: UNDERGROUND is presented by Michael Vine, Andrew O’Connor, Derren Brown and Paul Sandler for Vaudeville Productions Ltd. and David Binder. It is directed by Andrew O’Connor & Andy Nyman and written by Andy Nyman, Andrew O’Connor & Derren Brown. Setting by Will Bowen, Lighting Design by Charlie Morgan Jones. General Manager is John Dalston.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TOUR DATES & VENUES

*On sale now

April 2018
3, 4, 5, 6, 7 – Royal Court Theatre. LIVERPOOL* 0151 709 4321
10,11, 12, 13, 14 – Devonshire Park Theatre, EASTBOURNE* 01323 412 000
17, 18, 19, 20, 21 – New Theatre, HULL 01482 300306 (public booking from 1 Dec)
24, 25, 26, 27, 28 – Theatre Royal, NOTTINGHAM 0115 989 5555 (public booking from 6 Dec)

May 2018
8, 9, 10, 11, 12 – Welsh Millennium Centre, CARDIFF 029 2063 6464 (public booking from 4 Dec)
15, 16, 17, 18, 19 – Gaiety Theatre, DUBLIN* +353 818 719 388
22, 23, 24, 25, 26 – Grand Opera House, BELFAST 028 9024 1919 (public booking from 30 Nov)
28, 29, 30, 31 – Opera House, CORK* +353 21 427 0022

June 2018
5, 6, 7, 8, 9 – Theatre Royal, GLASGOW 0844 871 7647 (public booking from 7 Dec)
11, 12,13 – Pavilion Theatre, BOURNEMOUTH* 01202 055660
14,15, 16 – Orchard Theatre, DARTFORD* 01322 220000
19, 20, 21, 22, 23 – Theatre Royal, NORWICH 01603 630000 (public booking from 1 Dec)
26, 27, 28, 29, 30 – Marlowe Theatre, CANTERBURY* 01227 787787

July 2018
2, 3, 4, 5, 6 – Cliffs Pavilion, SOUTHEND 01702 351135 (public booking from 29 Nov)

Not suitable for under 12s

To book tickets go to: www.derrenbrown.co.uk Times vary.

Press enquiries:
Greg Day, Clout Communications
07889 861646 @cloutcomcouk

Download images from: http://cloutcom.co.uk/picture-gallery/derren-brown-underground/

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FILM NEWS (UK): THE EVIL IN US &, P2 receive their UK TV premieres on Horror Channel in December.

Plus FrightFest hits THE LESSON & SOME KIND OF HATE get network premieres

The Evil In Us

Christmas nightmares come early on Horror Channel, as the UK’s primary TV destination for genre fans serves up the UK TV premieres of Jason William Lee’s slick and stylish modern take on the zombie virus, THE EVIL IN US and Frank Khalfoun’s boundary-pushing crime slasher P2, starring Wes Bentley.
There are also network premieres for Adam Egypt Mortimer’s deeply-cutting supernatural revenge chiller SOME KIND OF HATE, Ruth Platt’s astonishingly bravura art-house horror THE LESSON, Travis Oates’ powerfully disturbing thriller DON’T BLINK, starring Mena Suvari ,and Glen Morgan’s gruesome BLACK CHRISTMAS, a remake of the classic 1974 seasonal slasher, starring popular scream queen Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

PLUS…LOST IN SPACE is proving a massive hit on the channel and Season 3 of the classic Sci-fi series once again transports us back to our favourite cosmic family from Tues 26th December, weekdays at 8pm.

Full film details in transmission order:

Fri 8 Dec @ 23:00 – SOME KIND OF HATE (2015) *Network Premiere

What if your past came back for you as a fully formed, physical thing that was going to kill you? Tightly wound Lincoln is a favourite target for the local high school bullies. One day he violently snaps and is sent to the Mind’s Eye Academy, a remote desert reformatory. But the harassment doesn’t stop and in despair he accidentally summons the kindred spirit of Moira, a girl tormented to suicide in the same establishment, who is more than happy to take vengeance on his persecutors.

Sat 9 Dec @ 22:45 – THE LESSON (2015) *Network Premiere

Fin and Joel are two teenage wasters running wild in an arid rural landscape. But their bad education is about to take a turn for the intellectual best as someone at the end of their tether has decided to teach both schoolboys a lesson they will never forget. A dark, claustrophobic and bloody coming of age love story with a shock final destination. Stars Robert Hands, Evan Bendall, Michaela Prchalová and Rory Coltart.

Fri 15 Dec @ 21:00 – THE EVIL IN US (2016) *UK TV Premiere

Six school friends meet up for a fourth of July celebration on a remote island expecting a harmless fun-filled weekend. One brings some cocaine along to get the partying really started. What they don’t know is the drug is actually a new bioactive compound peddled by a sadistic right-wing terrorist organisation. Anyone consuming it is then exposed to a virus causing fits of psychotic rage, mind-bending chaos and cannibalistic murder. Only Brie refused to partake and now she must fight to survive as everyone around her, including her fiancé, tries to savagely kill her.

Sat 16 Dec @ 21:00 – DON’T BLINK (2014) *Network Premiere

Ten friends arrive at a remote mountain resort for a weekend of relaxation but find it deserted. As they attempt to discover out what happened to the other guests, they are horrified to find that they too are disappearing, one by one. Stars Mena Suvari, Brian Austin Green, Joanne Kelly and ZackWard.

Fri 22 Dec @ 22:40 – P2 (2007) *UK TV Premiere

It’s Christmas Eve. Angela Bridges (Rachel Nichols), an ambitious executive, is supposed to be at a family gathering working late. When she gets down to the parking garage, she discovers that her car won’t start. Thomas (Wes Bentley), a friendly security guard, offers to help, but when he also invites her to share a small Christmas dinner he’s preparing, she doesn’t realise the invitation is not optional. If Angela wants to live to see Christmas morning, she must find a way to escape from level P2 of the parking garage.

Sat 23 Dec @ 21:00 – BLACK CHRISTMAS (2006) *Network Premiere

 

It’s Christmas break and the phone won’t stop ringing at one sorority house, where the ghost of a killer lurks and coeds are being systematically murdered one by one. In this remake of the 1974 slasher flick, a bloodthirsty psychopath is on the loose. Will sorority sisters Kelli (Katie Cassidy), Dana (Lacey Chabert), Lauren (Crystal Lowe) and the others escape with their lives? Jessica Harmon, Michelle Trachtenberg and Andrea Martin co-star.

Sky 319 / Virgin 149 / Freesat 138 / Freeview 70

www.horrorchannel.co.uk | twitter.com/horror_channel | facebook.com/horrorchannel

Press enquiries:
Greg Day, Clout Communications
greg@cloutcom.co.uk 07889 861646

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Film news: ZOMBIE SPRING BREAKERS (aka IBIZA UNDEAD) gets US release in 76 Cinemark theatres on Nov 2.

Premiere in LA with actress/producer Marcia do Vales in attendance

Marcia Do Vales, who, as Maria, kick-asses her way through Brit zomcom Ibiza Undead, will represent the film at its LA premiere on Thurs 2 Nov, which is hosted by US Film Studio & Distributor, The Asylum.

Now called ZOMBIE SPRING BREAKERS, Brazilian-born Marcia do Vales, who is about to shoot the leading role in supernatural thriller QUAIL HOLLOW, says: “I loved being part of this film, so am really pleased to have the opportunity to attend the US premier. With So few independent British films getting a theatrical release in the US it’s a real testament to the hard work that we put in to make this film something truly fun for the zombie fans everywhere!”

Here’s the trailer: https://youtu.be/bBh89dEl9Xo

 

Production details of QUAIL HOLLOW, directed by Spaniard Javier De Prado, and produced by UK’s Templeheart Films, will be announced soon, as will further news of Paul Hyett’s HERETIKS, which Marcia co-produced. Marcia is also currently prepping The Foreseen, a twisted haunted house thriller, to be directed by Anthony Melton and Ben Franklin.

Press contact and interview requests:
Greg Day
Clout Communications
greg@cloutcom.co.uk 07889 861646

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Ahead of the UK premiere of his latest film TERRIFIER at the Horror Channel Frightfest Halloween event, director Damien Leone talks about the ’Art’ of extreme horror clowning, his debt to Tom Savini and a terrifying Halloween experience…

Q: Art The Clown initially appeared in your 2008 short THE 9th CIRCLE, then the 2011 award-winning short TERRIFIER and in your first feature ALL HALLOW’S EVE. What made you decide to give him a fourth outing?

DAMIEN: Up until this point I never felt like I fully showcased Art’s potential. I believe between the short films and All Hallows’ Eve, there only exists about 20 minutes of Art the Clown screen time. For a character who’s done so little, he seems to really resonate with horror fans. After all of the positive feedback, a full length film that focused solely on Art was inevitable.

Q: Art has a very twisted personality – he’s both brutal (his silence adding to his deadliness) and comical but not without some subtle pathos. How difficult was it to strike that balance?

DAMIEN: In all honesty, I never intended to evoke any sort of pathos from his character. I do find that interesting and maybe there is something to that but the brutality and twisted personality was always intentional from the get-go as was the subtle comedy. Although I’m a huge fan of some horror comedies like Return of The Living Dead or Evil Dead 2, it’s not a style I strive for in my own films. I always shoot for a more serious tone but ironically, the comedy in Terrifier was very organic and almost wrote itself. I should be clear and say the intentional comedy in Terrifier only comes from the Art the Clown character himself. He’s always had a sick sense of humour from the very beginning but this time I tried to take it a little further whereas after every unspeakable act of violence he commits, he follows it with something comical like a facial expression or a quirky gesture. This does two things, it gives the audience a chance to relieve some tension but it also makes Art more demented when we realize just how much fun he’s having at his victim’s expense.

Q: You’ve said that you set out to make Art as violent as possible. Why?

DAMIEN. This basically comes from the fact that I’m a special effects artist. I knew the effects would be one of our strong suits going into the film since I can do a lot on a very limited budget. There is so much content out there right now and I believe that if you want to stand out, it doesn’t hurt to show things that will really grab the audience’s attention and get them talking. It’s 2017; there’s been thousands of horror movies. I mean how many times can you show a knife cutting through the air followed by a shot of blood hitting the wall? Almost everything has been done to death (pun intended) so I feel I have a duty to the audience to present them with stuff that hasn’t quite been seen before or if it has, to do it in a way that feels fresh.

Q: David Howard Thornton is terrific as Art. How did you two meet and bond? And how challenging was it, given Art had previously been played by Mike Giannelli.

DAMIEN. Finding a new actor to play Art was by far the most crucial and nerve-wracking aspect of this film. Everything people loved about Art was a testament to how Mike Giannelli portrayed him and now I had to start from scratch. Very frightening indeed. But as luck would have it, David came in for an audition one day and my producer and I immediately knew this was our guy. David pantomimed the act of stabbing someone to death and sawing their head off with great exuberance and glee. He’s also extremely animated, tall and thin. I always envisioned Art to be of a more slender build and I was excited to see what little quirks and nuances David could bring to the character. Working with David was a total delight from start to finish. We bonded immediately thanks to the countless hours in the makeup chair. Dave will joke and tell stories as I transform him into Art over the course of approximately three hours. We had to repeat this process well over 20 times during the shoot.

Q: The film has a very dark 70s/80s tone and the narrative is stripped down to the bone. What influences were at play here?

DAMIEN. The main objective was to keep it as close to the 20 minute short film as possible. The short film was a no holds barred, relentless, 70s-style grind house flick that was made to feel like an intense rollercoaster ride. That’s actually how I came up with the title Terrifier. To me “Terrifier” was more a reflection of the film as an experience and didn’t necessarily have anything specific to do with the characters or story. People responded so positively to the short film that I figured the best plan of attack would be to just make an 80 minute version of the 20 minute short. Essentially this would mean taking the best parts of a slasher film and eliminating as much of the filler as possible.

Q: With all the attention given to IT and Pennywise, does this tempt you even further to establish Art as a franchise and make more TERRIFIER films?

DAMIEN: Absolutely. Although we finally gave Art his own movie, we’ve only just scratched the surface. Now we have to dig a little deeper into his backstory. He has a ton of potential and I can see needing at least a couple of films to tell his full story. It’s too premature to say but numerous people have said he has the making of a horror icon. If this continues to be the case once Terrifier is released, it would be downright disrespectful to the character and to the fans to not produce more; just as long as we maintain some integrity and never jump the shark.

Q: All your films are set on Halloween night. Are you a fan of Halloween? Do you have a favourite Halloween / clown story?

DAMIEN. I am a huge fan of Halloween but the main reason I set Art the Clown’s films on Halloween is so it’s acceptable for a man to be walking the streets while dressed as a clown. This at least enables his victims to lower their guard around him when they first cross his path. If it was a hot August night and a mute clown sat across from you in a pizzeria, I think the cops would be called immediately. I do in fact have a personal Halloween story that stands out and I’ll try to make it quick. One night a few friends and I were driving home from a Halloween party and we passed a car on the side of the road that was turned completely on its side against the guard rail. We immediately pulled over and approached the vehicle. Two young women were inside the car. Apparently, the driver was drunk and fell asleep at the wheel. Thankfully, by some miracle, both girls were perfectly fine aside from being dazed and frightened but what makes this story worth telling is seeing my friend who’s 6’4 leap on top of the turned over car in full Spider-Man attire and pull the young women to safety. Surreal moment indeed.

Q: Who do you most admire in the horror genre?

DAMIEN. This is a very difficult question because I can throw around countless names and ramble on and on for hours but I must say I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for the makeup effects maestro Tom Savini. When I was around 6 or 7 years old I stumbled upon a VHS tape called Scream Greats that changed my life. It was a documentary on Savini and it was the first time I saw how monsters were created. This video and also the making of Michael Jackson’s Thriller with Rick Baker really left an impression on me. I was fascinated by seeing people transformed into creatures. For years I would rent these films over and over but when I was around 12 years old, I finally owned a copy of Scream Greats. This time I actually began experimenting. My mother took me to a horror convention where I actually bought my first makeup kit, a 12oz bottle of mint flavoured blood and a real machete (dulled) with a semi-circle cut out of the blade. This is a classic Savini gag that he’s used in several movies. It creates the illusion that the machete is actually buried in your flesh when you place it against the skin or on top of your skull. As soon as I got home, I tried out all of my new goodies on my friends and myself. Savini introduced me to blood tubes, mortician’s wax, things that were more accessible to someone starting out. Soon I started filming the effects with a camcorder and eventually I began making my own little short films; which is how I became interested in the grander aspect of filmmaking. But even though as a filmmaker I’m influenced by countless artists from all genres, I really have to thank Savini for being the first person to show me the magic of filmmaking.

Q: Zombies or vampires?

DAMIEN. Very tough question. Zombies frighten me more than vampires. My favourite horror film of all time is Romero’s Dawn of the Dead and my dream project is an epic zombie film but The Lost Boys holds such a special place in my heart. I saw it in the theatres when I was literally 3 years old and it had such a profound effect on me. It’s one of my absolute favourites till this day and because of it, I love vampires so much. So to answer your question, I can’t choose.

Q: Finally, what’s next?

DAMIEN: There are a few awesome projects that I’d love to tackle but I think it would be foolish to sleep on the inevitable Terrifier sequel. Clowns are so hot right now because of IT and more and more people are starting to dig Art the Clown on a daily basis so I think we should strike while the iron’s hot before the killer clown sub-genre goes into hibernation for another 20 years.

TERRIFIER receives its UK premiere at Horror Channel FrightFest Halloween 2017 on Saturday 28 Oct, Empire Haymarket, 11.00pm.
Tickets: http://frightfest.nutickets.com/

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News release VAULT OF HORROR – THE ITALIAN CONNECTION To be unleashed on Dec 8

News release
VAULT OF HORROR – THE ITALIAN CONNECTION
To be unleashed on Dec 8

20 Classic tracks from the golden era of Italian Horror, featuring composers including STELVIO CIPRIANI, FABIO FRIZZI & ENNIO MORRICONE, with extensive biographical notes on each track by FrightFest’s ALAN JONES

The golden era of Italian horror dates from the early 60’s to the mid 80’s. During that time directors such as Mario Bava, Dario Argento, Lucio Fulci, Antonio Margheriti, Umberto Lenzi, Joe D’Amato, and Enzo. G. Castellari directed some of the most outrageous terror films ever. As well as depicting some of the most stylish and horrific on screen images their films included some of the most elegant and beautiful scores. The cult following for their movies is as popular now as it’s ever been.

VAULT OF HORROR – THE ITALIAN CONNECTION presents twenty of the most amazing film themes ever and is a heady mix of funk, disco, electronic and prog rock. It features composers such as Stelvio Cipriani, Franco Micalizzi, Roberto Donati, Carlo Rustichelli, Nico Fidenco, Ennio Morricone, Fabio Frizzi, Riz Ortolani and many more. There are also original soundtrack themes from such films as ‘Zombie Flesh Eaters’, ‘Cannibal Ferox’, ‘Blood And Black Lace’, ‘The Beyond’, ‘The New York Ripper’, ‘Tentacles’ and ‘City Of The Living Dead’.

The truly stunning, exclusive sleeve has been painted by renowned graphic designer & commercial artist Graham Humphreys and the biographical notes on each track are written by author, critic and FrightFest director Alan Jones. As an added bonus Demon Records are including a CD version in a replica card wallet as well as a stunning 12×12” reproduction collector’s art print of the sleeve painting.

Soundcloud: http://bit.ly/2xfgJaU

Trailer: https://youtu.be/vgV6gnqx0nk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vaultofhorror1

Buy link: http://amzn.to/2zssh9m

CATALOGUE NO: DEMREC237
RELEASE DATE: 8th December 2017
FORMAT: 2 x 180G black vinyl with CD & 12×12 art print
CATEGORY: Soundtracks
BARCODE: 5014797896345


TRACKLISTING

DISC 1 SIDE A
Carlo Rustichelli – ‘Atelier (totoli)’ from ‘Blood And Black Lace ‘(‘Sei Donne Per L’Assassioni)’
Franco Micalizzi – ‘Seq 1’ from ‘The Last Hunter’ ‘(L’Ultimo Cacciatore)’
Nico Fidenco – ‘Seq 6’ from ‘Porno Holocaust’
Roberto Donati – ‘Main Theme’ from ‘Eaten Alive’ ‘(Mangiati Vivi!)’
Francesco De Masi – ‘New York One More Day’ from ‘The New York Ripper’ ‘(Lo Squatatore Di
New York)’

DISC 1 SIDE B
Franco Micalizzi feat. Warren Wilson – ‘Bargain With The Devil’ from ‘Beyond The Door’ ‘(Chi Sei)’
Stelvio Cipriani – ‘Small Town Pleasures’ from ‘Tentacles’ ‘(Tentacoli)’
Roberto Donati – ‘NYC Main Title’ from ‘Cannibal Ferox’
A. Blonksteiner – ‘Apocalypse’ from ‘Cannibal Apocalypse’ ‘(Apocalypse Domani)’
Carlo Maria Cordio – ‘Absurd’ from ‘Absurd’ ‘(Rosso Sangue)’

DISC 2 SIDE C
Fabio Frizzi – ‘Main Theme’ from ‘Zombie Flesh Eaters’ ‘(Zombi 2)’
Fabio Frizzi – ‘Mystery’s Apotheosis’ from ‘City Of The Living Dead’ ‘(Paura Nella Citta Dei Morti Viventi)’
Fabio Frizzi – ‘Voci Dal Nula’ from ‘The Beyond’ ‘(L’Aldila)’
Walter Rizatti– ‘I Remember’ from ‘House By The Cemetery’ ‘(Quella Villa Accanto Al Cimitero)’
Stefano Mainetti – ‘Main Theme’ from ‘Zombie Flesh Eaters 2’ ‘(Zombi 3)’

DISC 2 SIDE D
Walter Rizatti – ‘Main Theme’ from ‘Bronx Warriors’ ‘(1990: I Guerrieri Del Bronx)’
Claudio Simonetti – ‘Nuke Is Over’ from ‘The New Barbarians’ ‘(Nuovi Barbari)’
Riz Ortolani – ‘The Fighter Centurions’ from ‘Rome 2033 – The Fighter Centurions’ ‘(I Guerrieri Dell ‘Anno 2072)’
Ennio Morricone – ‘End Theme’ from ‘Holocaust 2000’
Nico Fidenco – ‘I Celebrate Myself’ from ‘Emanuelle In America’


Alan Jones is available for press/radio interviews (excluding October 18 – 25).

For more information, please contact:
Lidia Pini lidia.pini@demonmusicgroup.co.uk or David.Akerman@DemonMusicGroup.co.uk.

www.demonmusicgroup.co.uk

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Ahead of the UK premiere of his debut feature HOSTILE at the Horror Channel Frightfest Halloween event, director Mathieu Turi talks Tarantino, tough shoots and his reveals his ‘magic hour’.

Q: You were born in Cannes so you grew up with film all around? When did you know for sure you wanted to direct?

I think it’s always been there. As a child, I used to steal my dad’s VHS camera to make mini-movies. They were basically all about my Jurassic Park toys eating my dog or invading the garden. Later, I did more elaborate short films with friends, instead of studying. Then, I remember watching BRAVEHEART and the making of the movie. For the first time, I knew that directing was something I wanted to do for a living.

Q: You have been second unit director and assistant director on numerous major blockbusters – SHERLOCK HOLMES 2, INGLORIOUS BASTARDS, G.I. JOE – what was the movie or director you feel you learnt most from?

Tarantino, with no hesitation. ‘INGLORIOUS BASTARDS was one of my first jobs in the movie business, and I was assistant of the assistant of the assistant. But when you work on the set of someone you admire, It’s very special. I learnt that you have to love what you do, and as a director, you have to stay focused on the actors and the scene. Nothing else matters. Working for Quentin Tarantino was my best set experience as an A.D.

Q: What inspired the HOSTILE script?

A lot of stuff. HOSTILE is a kind of mix between my two shorts (SONS OF CHAOS and BROKEN). The first is a post-apocalyptic, very low-budget movie, and the second is a romance in an elevator. And If you talk about exterior inspirations, I would say the main one is I AM LEGEND, the Richard Matheson book. It’s my favourite book ever, a masterpiece. I read it twice a year, and it’s never the same feeling. Also, I’m a huge fan of the video game THE LAST OF US. It has everything : a perfect story, focused on characters but in an original post-apocalyptic context, with never seen creatures, and the end is magic. I’s love to see a movie adaptation of it, but It would be tricky.

Q: HOSTILE was executive produced by Xavier Gens and stars Brittany Ashworth from his new movie THE CRUCIFIXION. Can you talk about his influences and that of recent extreme French genre titles?

Xavier is a good friend of mine, and also my mentor since the beginning. He’s the one who presented me to FullTime Films producers (Thomas Lubeau, Eric Gendarme and Olivier Chateau) as they were looking for projects. We all met at the Cannes film fest in 2015, and two years later, here we are! He also helped us to find Brittany Ashworth, as he had worked with her on THE CRUCIFIXION. HOSTILE is not influenced by any of them, but I’m very happy that all those movies got made. You know, in France, It’s not easy to do that kind of extreme genre movie.

Q: HOSTILE builds to a wonderful emotional epiphany. Was the story all about leading to that rare moment in zombie movies?

It’s the first scene that came to my mind before writing the script, and without spoiling it, it was also the best moment on set. It was just magical – the natural light at that exact time (D.O.P’s calls it the “magic hour”).The team was speechless, and in my mind, I knew It worked. Often, as a director, you have to wait to be in the editing room to be hundred percent sure a scene works, but for that one, I knew on set.

Q: None of this would work unless you cared about the characters, especially Juliette. Did her back-story change through successive drafts of the screenplay?

Not complete scenes, but dialogue and actions changed a lot. I’m a very collaborative director with my actors, and I want them to dig into the characters, try stuff, fail sometimes, but always try to go further. And they did, every time. Juliette’s backstory has been completed by Brittany. I gave her some intentions, but asked her to find a personal story, why she came to New-York and what happened in the first years of her post-apocalyptic life. We talked a lot about it, very detailed stuff that only her and I know. Actually, we could easily do a prequel about it!

Q: We love Grégory Fitoussi in the UK because of the French law and order drama SPIRAL. Was that a reason for casting him as Jack?

I really wanted someone with a true charisma. Grégory is one of those guys. He could just walk in the room and you feel it. It’s a very rare power. And also, we worked a lot together on the character, to keep his French touch intact, but not fall in the cliché. Jack needed to be very confident, strong and mysterious. He’s the entire reason for the flash-backs, so we had to keep in mind that Juliette felt secure with him, and that’s what she doesn’t have any more in the present.

Q: And we also love Javier Botet who seems to be in so many movies at the moment. What did he add to his Living Dead role that no one else could have?

Two things: the first is obvious, and that’s why he’s in all those movies. (REC, MAMA, ALIEN:COVENANT, IT). He has an incredible body, and he uses it like magic. When you see him working, it’s just insane. The movements he performs, the way his thin body moves. He’s a piece of art. The second thing: he’s a very good actor, and that’s vital for that kind of role. You can’t imagine how hard it is to express yourself under the makeup. And Javier does it perfectly.

Q: Your feature debut; what was the biggest learning curve you hadn’t expected?

That you have to sleep an entire month to get back on your feet! More seriously, I would say It was very hard to go from one team to another, as our shoot was only 24 days, in three different continents. So we had the New-York Unit, the Morocco Unit and the Paris Unit, with different crews, productions offices, preps, etc… But on the other hand it has been an incredible adventure, and I had the chance to work with all those amazing people.

Q: Will you always stay in horror or is it a stepping stone to other genres? Can you tell us what you’re working on at the moment?

HOSTILE is kind of a two genre movie, I just love to cross lines. But I love horror, sci-fi, thrillers… And I’m working on a very crazy project right now. It should be official soon, but I just can say that it’s a sci-fi-fi/horror movie with a unique concept. We are in the casting phase right now, with the same producers at FullTime Films, and we will shoot it next spring. I can’t wait to talk about it, and I hope we will see each other again at FrightFest next year to show it!

HOSTILE receives its UK premiere at Horror Channel FrightFest Halloween 2017 on Saturday 28 Oct, Empire Haymarket, 12.05pm.
Tickets: http://frightfest.nutickets.com/

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FILM NEWS (UK): Horror Channel devotes November to Bloody Brits and rampaging sharks.

November promo trailer:
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ebA0a6KfV6o&feature=youtu.be)
 

Dog Soldiers

November on Horror Channel has a distinctive cutting-edge with a Saturday night prime-time BLOODY BRITISH SEASON, celebrating the new wave of British horror movies that reinvigorated the UK horror industry in the early 2000s. There are 9pm network premieres for Neil Marshall’s sensational werewolf debut feature DOG SOLDIERS (2002) (Sat 11 Nov); his monstrous all-female star cast follow-up THE DESCENT (2005) (Sat 25 Nov), Christopher Smith’s underground ghost train journey through hell, CREEP (2004) (Sat 18 Nov); and Nick Hamm’s psychologically gripping THE HOLE (2001) (Sat 4 Nov), with Keira Knightley in her first significant film role.
Sharknado 5: Global Swarming

And the cuts get deeper with a SHARKMANIA MARATHON – a slew of six salt-water B-movie shockers on Sunday 12 October, highlighted by the network premieres of the last two
adventures in the sky-flying sharks cult franchise SHARKNADO 4: THE 4TH AWAKENS (2016) at 8.10pm and SHARKNADO 5: GLOBAL SWARMING (2017) on at 9.50pm. The other teeth-chattering offerings are: PLANET OF THE SHARKS (2016), SUPER SHARK (2011), ICE SHARKS (2016) and THE REEF (2010).

There are seven other primetime network premieres this month: M. Night Shyamalan’s boldly unsettling survival movie THE HAPPENING (2008), starring Mark Wahlberg; Paul Schrader’s hypnotic & erotic classic CAT PEOPLE (1982); Christopher Smith’s hilariously shocking SEVERANCE (2006) starring Danny Dyer and Andy Nyman; Victor Salva’s dazzling American Gothic sequel JEEPERS CREEPERS 2 (2003); SILENT HILL (2006), Christophe Gans’s eerie adaptation of Konami’s video game series of the same name; Fran Rubel Kuzui’s BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER (1992), starring Donald Sutherland, Rutger Hauer and Hilary Swank; and croc-shocker LAKE PLACID 2 (2007).

Sharknado 5: Global Warming

Jeepers Creepers 2

PLUS…Season 2 of the classic sci-fi series LOST IN SPACE transports us back to our favourite cosmic family from Tues 14 October, weekdays at 20:00. Created and produced by Irwin Allen, the hugely popular franchise follows the adventures of the Robinsons and their surprisingly human Robot, a family of space colonists who struggle to survive in a strange and often hostile universe after their ship is sabotaged by the roguish Dr Zachary Smith and thrown off course.

TV: Sky 319 / Virgin 149 / Freesat 138 | Freeview 70
www.horrorchannel.co.uk | twitter.com/horror_channel | facebook.com/horrorchannel

Press enquiries:
Greg Day, Clout Communications
greg@cloutcom.co.uk 07889 861646

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Ahead of the UK premiere of his latest film IT CAME FROM THE DESERT at the Horror Channel Frightfest Halloween event, director Marko Mäkilaakso shares his admiration for Roger Corman, love of B-Movies, spoofing and overcoming homeland obstacles

IT CAME FROM THE DESERT is inspired by Cinemaware’s cult 1980s video game, which in turn was motivated by the giant creature feature craze infesting 1950s Hollywood. What was the main inspiration for you?

MARKO: There’s so many movies and makers which inspired ICFTD, but the main inspiration was exactly that; creature feature infested 1950s Hollywood films, and the legendary Cinemaware Desert games and creature features and action comedies I grew up with in the 1980s. I love B-movies and mainstream filmmakers who give homages to those in their works, like Joe Dante, John Landis, Tim Burton, Steven Spielberg etc. There’s something so pure and honest about B-movies and even though done with tight budgets you can see and feel that the makers put their hearts and souls into making the movie. That’s really inspiring!

I’ve always loved Cannon Films action movies like American Ninja and Delta Force, and comedies like Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Ed Wood, The Burbs’ as well as creature features like Piranha and Gremlins. 1980’s TV shows like V, Knight Rider, Street Hawk, Amazing Stories and I am sure there’s a little bit something from all of those in my movie.

The modern creature feature craze are the Syfy channel movies. Some of them are fun, but most of them are too lazy and poorly done. I don’t mind low budgets, but when companies just want to cash in without any passion to the project then it’s doomed from the very beginning. Roger Corman did it correctly! He hired passionate filmmakers to give their everything and in the end the movies had something extra, something special. Like the It Came from the Desert game was spoofing those and other 1950s monster movies, my movie is also spoofing the modern creature feature craze of Syfy movies.

It’s smartly scripted, extremely funny, with an OTT deadpan delivery. How did you go about developing and writing the script to achieve that style?

MARKO: Nice to hear, thank you! The tone of the movie was very clear to me from the very beginning. I couldn’t see the movie done in any other way. This was my love letter to movies I grew up with. I wanted to bring back this kind of old school ”Bill & Ted’s excellent adventure” style of characters and the silly and fun moments that brings.

I wrote the first draft which was still much leaner and meaner in scope but had the story, main characters, tone and comedy already set and once Cinemaware gave their blessing to ”adapt” the game we expanded the scope. Talented writer Hank Woon came on board and wrote the next drafts expanding the tale. And then I wrote a few drafts mainly to keep the humor and action the way I imagined it.

Then UK based AMP joined the party to co-produce and co-finance the movie and they suggested that talented filmmaker Trent Haaga polish the script. Trent got the tone right away. He did a wonderful job and made the script even better!

Also one crucial element was the casting. I went thru many, many actors to find the right cast who got the tone and could deliver the humour I was aiming for. The cast was just perfect for their roles and I had the luxury to allow them to improvise while shooting. I think the movie got funnier and funnier while shooting and that’s only because we did the casting right!

The giant ant special effects are terrific. Is it true they are a homage to Ray Harryhausen?

MARKO: Ray Harryhausen was AMAZING! I love his work and there’s definitely some Harryhausen spirit in the ant effects. Production designer / co-ant designer / practical ant effect creator Kari kankaanpää and I are both big fans of Harryhausen’s work, stop motion and miniatures. We even thought about using some miniatures in the movie, but the budget disagreed with that crazy idea. I actually have a movie treatment ready which is homage to Harryhausen and Toho. I even sent it to Julie & Roger Corman. It’s awesome and hope it will get made someday.

It’s been described as a ‘pulp action horror mutant monster movie’. Is that what you set out to make?

MARKO: I set out to make a fun, entertaining, nostalgic, pulpy action-adventure-comedy-creature feature with a touch of horror, so yes.. that sounds about right!

You’re known internationally for your strong visual style. How much does being a successful music video director influence your movie career?

MARKO: I think that has a lot to do with who I am as a director and also how I work. Music videos have been a great learning ground for filmmaking. You need to shoot fast and make cool looking images and tell a story (if the video has any) in a visual way. So, yes, I owe a lot to that. But of course making a movie is completely its own beast.

You come from Finland. How important a part would you say your native roots play when writing and directing?

MARKO: You know, that’s tricky thing for me. I always felt that I was born in the wrong country because of the kind of movies I wanted to make. I was never taken seriously or supported much by the Finnish film industry, except by the great filmmaker Antti J. Jokinen who gave my start.

People look down on these kind of genre movies and that’s sad I think and that’s why I packed my bags eight years ago and moved away from Finland. Don’t get me wrong, I do love my country, but it also pushed me away. I was the outsider in the industry with weird ideas and thoughts of making action horror movies. I was literally laughed at! So I went elsewhere and made my two first movies with countries and people who did get it. Even now, I am not considered as a ”serious filmmaker” because of the movies I make, but I am happy that Desert is a Finnish co-production.
We also shot one week in Finland which was a wild contrast coming from hot Spain to cold wintery Finland. I give all the respect in the world to Finnish Film Foundation who bravely supported and gave financing to the movie. Trust me; it’s a really brave thing to do in Finland! So maybe after this movie the Finns we’ll see that’s I am not giving up and I’m still making these genre movies which I LOVE from the bottom of my heart!

Your debut film was the well-received action / horror WAR OF THE DEAD, which you also wrote and co-produced. Have you always been drawn to the horror genre?

MARKO: I love horror! I love action! I love comedy! I love drama! Dammit! I love movies no matter what the genre is! But horror has a special place in my heart. It’s so honest and visual genre. We all have nightmares and fears and it’s very easy to identify with those no matter how fantastical it is. It’s the primal fear in all of us and it is so damn fun to watch knowing that no matter what happens you’ll be safe! Shooting horror is also lots of fun and horror is also a genre where you can mix action and comedy without rules. Just pure damn FUN!

After DEADLY DESCENT, your savage, war-like abominable snowman movie for Syfy and Universal, you turned your hand to a home-grown family comedy film, ELLA AND FRIENDS 2. Why?

MARKO: Well, that’s good question. I have kids, three of them, and they are dying to see movies I’ve directed, but I can’t really show them, so out of the blue I was offered to direct ELLA 2 and I was shocked! Me? A Kid’s movie? Maybe the producer liked my more family friendly music videos and stuff. No matter what this was a wonderful opportunity to make something for my kids and also to direct my first Finnish movie and my first comedy! So I took the job with open arms. My oldest daughter, my dad and my brother are in it and I’m acting in it too!. It’s a real family affair! And I was working with one of my childhood heroes, Pirkka-Pekka Petelius, a comic genius!

You’ve also appeared as an actor in two of your films. Will we see more of you in front of the camera in future?

MARKO: Ha! Funny thing was that I had a real character in War of the Dead. I played Corporal Peter Jackson and I had few dialogue scenes with Andrew Tiernan who played the lead, but I needed to move along faster with the story and I cut out those scenes. I am still in the movie, but not talking. Maybe better so! Ella 2 was an opportunity to act a small role, so I did it. It was lots of fun! I am also in ICFTD, but briefly in the background. So more acting in the future? Well, maybe more cameos!

Finally, what’s next? Will you stick with action horror?

MARKO: Not sure yet. There’s many projects in development, but let’s see which one gets first financed. There’s definitely more action horror coming!

It Came From the Desert receives its UK premiere at Horror Channel FrightFest Halloween 2017 on Saturday 28 Oct, Empire Haymarket, 4.10pm.
Tickets: http://frightfest.nutickets.com/

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Film news (UK): Remastered social network horror PANIC BUTTON has hard-core new trailer

Set for Oct 23 DVD & Download release, courtesy of Trinity Film.

Chris Crow’s ground-breaking, psycho-cyber horror thriller PANIC BUTTON gets a remastered launch on DVD & Download on Oct 23 and Trinity Film has released a brand new trailer today.

Trailer link: https://youtu.be/EFP3smhP_D4

SYNOPSIS:
Four young people win a trip of a lifetime to New York, courtesy of their favourite social-networking website – All2gethr.com. On board the private jet, their mysterious host invites to take part in the in-flight entertainment – a new online gaming experience. But this is no ordinary game. Trapped at 30,000 feet, they are forced to play for their lives and the lives of their loved ones. They are about to learn that putting your life online can have deadly offline consequences and that there no ESC key…

The impressive DVD EXTRAS include an Audio Commentary with writers Frazer Lee, John Shackleton & David Shillitoe, a Guerrilla Filmmakers Masterclass and ‘Flight School’ – How to get a film off the ground. In addition there is a Trailer Galler, Gag reel, some outtake/deleted scenes and a ‘Making of’ Gallery.

Panic Button, made in 2011, was one of the first British horror films to explore the dark side of social networking and the perils of sharing too much information online. Played out in a claustrophobic, almost real-time situation, the film taps into pertinent social issues that now have a universal significance in the digital age. Themes such as social media crime, identity theft, cyber bullying, voyeurism, peer pressure, child safety and terrorism all come into play, at a time when iPads and smart phone apps were only in their early generations.

Trailer will be screened at the Horror Channel FrightFest Halloween event on Sat 28 Oct, Empire Haymarket.

PURCHASE LINKS:

Download

DVD

PRODUCT INFORMATION:

TITLE: Panic Button
Release Date: On DVD & Digital Download from October 23, 2017
Format: DVD
RRP: £12.99
BBFC: Certificate 18
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Running Time: 95 minutes
Language: English
Country of origin: UK
Distributor: Trinity Film

CREDITS:
PANIC BUTTON is a MOVIE MOGUL PRODUCTION, starring SCARLETT ALICE JOHNSON JACK GORDON MICHAEL JIBSON ELEN RHYS and JOSHUA RICHARDS.
Costume Designer: SIAN JENKINS, Hair and make up by VICTORIA NORTHBROOKE Production Designer: TIM DICKEL, Director of Photography: SIMON POULTER, Edited by JOHN GILLANDERS, music by MARK RUTHERFORD, Line Producer: GARETH I DAVIES, co-producer: DAVID SHILLITOE
Written by FRAZER LEE, JOHN SHACKLETON, DAVID SHILLITOE & CHRIS CROW
Produced by JOHN SHACKLETON & directed by CHRIS CROW

Press contact:
Greg Day – Clout Communications UK
greg@cloutcom..co.uk 07889 861646 www.twitter.com/cloutcomcouk

 

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