NEWSFLASH!!

THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST IN THE BIG BEAR HORROR FILM FESTIVAL (BBHFF)

THE BBHFF OFFICIAL WEBSITE IS NOW UP AND RUNNING, EVEN BETTER! There are a few things that will be updated over the next week or so, but it is UP!

SUBMIT YOUR FILM: if you are interested in submitting your film, please email us for a form at info@bigbearhorrorfilmfest.com

Friday, December 31, 2010

A Scary Christmas and a Frightful New Year- Part 2


Black Christmas (1974) - Dir. Bob Clark


And we’re talking the original, for two reasons: 1) nobody’s yellow, 2) director Bob Clark also directed A Christmas Story
, so that’s two holiday classics he’s got under his belt. Throw in a Margot Kidder (Sisters, Superman, The Amityville Horror), Olivia Hussey (Romeo & Juliet, It), John Saxon (Enter the Dragon, A Nightmare on Elm Street, From Dusk ‘til Dawn), a serial killer crashing a sorority house Christmas party and ***SPOILER ALERT*** “The calls are coming from inside the house,” you’ve got yourself Christmas classic.


Silent Night, Deadly Night 2 (1987) - Dir. Lee Harry


***SPOILER ALERT***


Now, you’re probably asking, “why the sequel without the first?” Well, the second film is essentially the “good parts” version of the original, almost literally “all killer, no filler.” In the first film, after witnessing the murder of his parents by a thief dressed as Santa, young Billy is scarred for life.


Consistently tormented by holiday cheer as he grows up, he, too, finally snaps, dons a Santa suit and goes on a killing spree, punishing those he deems have been naughty, before being gunned down in front of his little brother Ricky. The first film has a bit more plot development involving an overbearing nun. But the second film is almost entirely flashbacks of the kills from the first, as Billy’s brother Ricky recounts the incidents of the first film to a psychiatrist.


Meanwhile, Ricky awaits trial for his own amazingly gratuitous killing spree, attributed to the trauma of witnessing his brother’s death (such a vicious cycle), which he then recounts before
escaping, donning a Santa suit of his own and going after the nun he blames for his brother’s death. But, essentially, Silent Night, Deadly Night 2 is the greatest hits from the first film with a cherry on top.


Santa’s Slay (2005) - Dir. David Steiman


In this film, jolly St. Nick isn’t a willing purveyor of Christmas cheer. In fact, he’s not a saint either, not even close.


Bill Goldberg (yes, the former wrestler) plays the son of Satan, after losing a bet with an angel he’s forced to go around the world giving gifts and spreading joy for 2000 years. But, once the bet is off, he goes back to raising holy hell.

Monday, December 27, 2010

A Scary Christmas and a Frightful New Year- Part 1

I’m pretty sure this isn’t what they had in mind when they said, “keeping Christ in Christmas,” but scaring the be-jesus out of you is about as close as I’m gonna get to a religious Christmas. So, if spending the holidays with your relatives isn’t frightening enough, I offer my list of holiday-themed horror films, one for each of the 12 days of Christmas, to help you scream in the New Year.


The Last Stop on the Night Train (1975) - Dir. Aldo Lado

This is wonderful film to have in mind as you make the journey home for the holidays, gifts waiting under the tree, stockings hung by the chimney with care, parents cooking up the roast beast, a hyper-sexualized, homicidal trio holding you hostage in your train car…

In the world of high concept summaries, I imagine the pitch for this film went something like this, “It’s Last House on the Left on a train… but with more sex and violence.” Sold. Lisa and Margaret catch the night train from Germany to Italy to spend Christmas with Lisa’s family, but a chance encounter with two guys, a girl and a pocketknife puts a damper on their holiday. If you’re familiar with The Last House on the Left, then you know this story. It’s the same gist, with the terrible trio getting picked up by Lisa’s parents. If you like Last House, then you’ll like Night Train.



So many amazing things going on is this film. From the Halloween inspired killer-POV opening, you know you’re in for a treat, but not because this film is anything like Halloween. Instead, it’s because the heavy breathing over the POV makes it seems like Darth Vader is the killer who hates Santa.

Sadly, the madman loose in London, killing anyone he can find dressed as Santa, is not Darth Vader. I guess they couldn’t afford David Prowse. Still, gory deaths abound. And I’m pretty sure that Al McGoohan, credited for writing and directing additional scenes, comes from the world of porn, because there are some wonderfully random scenes that have almost nothing to do with the plot of the film and seem to serve no purpose other than provide some gratuitous nudity. This film might have you thinking twice about dressing up as Santa. It might also make you think twice about asking your girlfriend, who just witnessed her father’s murder, to pose nude for a photographer friend.

Christmas Evilaka You Better Watch Out–(1980) - Dir. Lewis Jackson


Young Harry Stadling spies mom and “Santa Claus” doing a bit more than kissing underneath the mistletoe. When “Santa” unhooked mom’s garter belt he unknowingly unhinged Harry, warping his fragile little mind.


Once Harry’s all grown up, he’s got an unhealthy obsession with Christmas, spying on all the neighborhood kids, making his own list of who's naughty and nice. Imagine Travis Bickle, but instead of driving a taxi he works in a toy factory. And when he finally snaps, instead of donning a Mohawk, he super-glues a white beard to his face, dons a Santa suit, and spreads a little Christmas fear by killing those he deems naughty. But the nice need not fear him; he has no problem rewarding the good boys and girls. You won’t believe the ending.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Winning Film: PELT

PELT was the big winner this year. They won Outstanding Feature Film and Fan Favorite. The Big Bear Horror Film Festival was their World Premiere. Congratulations to the cast and crew of Pelt.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Winners of the Big Bear Horror Film Festival 2010

This past weekend, the Big Bear Horror Film Festival completed its second year on top by doubling the number of attendees over last year and presenting 10 awards to these outstanding people and films.

Outstanding Performance - The Cast of Clemency
Outstanding Director – Kevin McGuiness from RED
Outstanding Sound – The Unfun House
Outstanding Special Effects Make-up – Clemency
Outstanding Special Visual Effects – RED
Outstanding Animation - RED
Outstanding Short Film – Devil’s Creek
Fan Favorite – Pelt
Outstanding Feature Film – Pelt
Kerry O’Quinn Award – Victor Miller

“We were so honored to have Victor Miller, Creator of the original Friday the 13th attending the festival and also being honored with our most special award, the Kerry O’Quinn award,” said Festival Director Michael Coulombe. “We also had so many great films being shown this year and these winners should feel very proud.”

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Year Two and Thank Yous.

I am excited about the possibilities that year two have to offer for the festival as well as for the filmmakers and the fans of the horror genre. The team has been working so hard this past year to ensure an amazing weekend.

I've been lax in posting this year. My sincerest apologies. There are so many wonderful things to share with you. We have many wonderful guests coming to this year's fest. We have wonderful new team members and also some amazing more promos that were done for the festival. Chris Gaida, our Director of PR and Media teamed up with Director, Vartan Nazarian to create some amazing videos for our viral marketing campaign.

Thank you also to my co-producer Jamie Kristen who has put it in a tireless amount of work and energy into the logistics of the fest. It's not easy, I know that but she has an amazing gift of pulling things together.

Here is to our second year. *cheers*

Friday, January 29, 2010

Emerging Artist: Amit Tishler




1)When did you find your love for drawing?


I think it was when I was about 8 years old, Pretty late to start. Up until that age I drew just like any other kid, Rough sketches with no solid line or any sign of special talent. My mom says that when I was 8 I came to her one day with a drawing of the Flintstones. I had a videotape of that cartoon back then and I looked at the cover and started drawing what I saw.

My mom looked at it and didn't believe I drew it because up until that moment I didn't show any signs of artistic talent, But after I did several more, she realized it was me. From that moment on I just kept on drawing. My first drawings were mainly tributes to my childhood heroes, but a few years later I already started to design my own characters and develop my own unique style.

Too bad most of my drawings were made during class!.

2)How would you describe your drawings? How would you describe your cartoons?

My drawings changed quite a lot over the years, both in terms of style and in terms of content. These days I mainly draw concept artwork for stories and characters I'm working on for several ideas I hope to develop to something big in my future career. Also, I'm highly influenced by Japanese animation and video games and it really shows. My designs may not be "Anime" but they're a mixture of my own line and a heavy "Anime" influence. Most of my drawings today are pretty dark, less humorous and kind of dramatic.

Unlike my artwork, my animation films are pretty different for now. Although my films have a dark tone to them, they're mostly comedies. They're colourful and cartoonish and sometimes over the top. The subjects themselves are also mostly humorous and tend to avoid over complexity in their storytelling. The main reason for this contrast is that I prefer to keep my more complex ideas for future productions, they're not something I can produce on my own and they're not short-film oriented materials.

3)Is horror your favorite subject to draw about?

You can definitely say so. Most of my animation shorts have a "Horror" genre touch to them. Most of the time it's in the mood, atmosphere and overall design- like in my short film "Born to be dead" which deals with the adventures of a cute little girl who gets thrown out of heaven into the pits of Hell.

I use the horror elements through sound and direction and it's a usage of classic horror elements more then violent horror elements. Although I did try my luck with some bloody gore in my latest film- "Winterhunt", and I have to admit it was a guilty pleasure.

It's also worth noting that I usually I mix the horror elements with colourful and often cute characters, which is something I really like. I think a part of it is because I'm a Jhonen Vasquez fan, the influence over my style is often hard to ignore.


4)Where do you come up with your ideas for the cartoons?


Good question. it's hard to put my finger on it, but usually when I want to start a new project I just sit next to a blank paper and start to sketch nonsense on it. After a while, with no direction whatsoever, something start to shape out of the sketches. A sign for an idea or a character worth developing.

Of course I have to again note that my main sources of influence also have a big part in this process. I watch a lot of films...and I mean, A LOT. I watch a lot of Anime and animation in general and I'm also a non-hardcore comics fan. So sometimes an idea pops when I watch or read something and get an idea for my own stuff.



5)Explain your process? Do you draw by hand or on the computer?

Good question. it's hard to put my finger on it, but usually when I want to start a new project I just sit next to a blank paper and start to sketch nonsense on it. After a while, with no direction whatsoever, something start to shape out of the sketches. A sign for an idea or a character worth developing.

Of course I have to again note that my main sources of influence also have a big part in this process. I watch a lot of films...and I mean, A LOT. I watch a lot of Anime and animation in general and I'm also a non-hardcore comics fan. So sometimes an idea pops when I watch or read something and get an idea for my own stuff.

6)Would you ever consider writing and/or directing live action films? Would they be horror?


Definitely YES! I always thought about it and hopefully I can do it one day, directing live action is definitely on my "to do" list. Now, as far as genre goes, yeah. I would probably deal with the horror genre as well in one way on another. If not as a pure horror only film than as a mixture of two genres like Horror/Sci-Fi, Horror/Fantasy especially.

And even if I'll direct something completely out of the genre, like most of my work, no matter what genre, it'll inevitably have a dark tone of some kind.

7)What current projects are you working on?

Well, these days I'm pretty over-loaded. I have a full time job as a senior Flash developer and I also work as a freelance character designer and animator. But my true main interest is to get into an MFA animation program abroad, finish it and start working outside my country. The industry here is very limited and the work conditions are harsh. I'm aiming for something bigger and hope that studies abroad will serve this cause.

But still, there is an idea me and my friends started working on for a short film. It's still I'm writing stages but if we actually pull it off- it'll surely be different from everything I've done so far. So, I don't want to give away any details but stay tuned to my Youtube account in the next few months and you might get a sneak peek!

Amit Tishler



Thursday, January 28, 2010

Mime After Midnight





1) Where did you get the idea for Mime After midnight?

The idea for Mime After Midnight crawled up from that place in my subconscious where my nightmares cavort and frolic. What is more frightening than running into a mime on the street after midnight? How about a mime with a cannibal’s appetite that can kill you in a hundred ways you could never comprehend?

2) Mime After Midnight is part of a series, is that correct? What are the parts of the series and how do they all connect?

My short films, in order of release, are The Killer Krapper, Pervula, Mime After Midnight, The Terrible Old Tran and Panty Kill. They all share a similar tone, a strange mix of inappropriate adult humor and perverse ultra-violence. The first four are named after their killers, while the fifth, Panty Kill, is named after the killer’s credo. Panty Kill’s original title followed the trend, but I’m glad I changed it from Crotchless Panty Face.
The real connection between these shorts is a new killer known as Knife Happy. He has something to say about all of these films, plus a body count to top them all, and he’s the subject of a new wraparound short named after him.

3) How did you handle the special effects?

Mime After Midnight effects artist Rob Fletcher and I tested all of the make-up effects endlessly and went through months of trial and error. We were creating effects live that we had never seen before, for very little money. A lot of the make-up tests were filmed and I hope to include them as a DVD extra someday. Lots of fun, squirting wet stuff and quivering flesh wounds. In extreme close-up.
There was one effect in particular involving a false body, live stand-in, and spinning power tool that must have been filmed over 50 times over weeks before those precious few perfect seconds were achieved. You can’t have this kind of on set fun if you go the CGI route. Plus one real burst finger occurred during another effect, and the shot was used since the effect did work.

4) Explain your shooting schedule. What issues arose during principal photography?

Mime After Midnight’s shooting schedule encountered every problem imaginable. We were filming the majority of it on public streets at night without permits, including complicated make-up effects, in a busy section of the city that had to appear deserted. And since this was in Seattle, we were shooting around the rain. We had to run from police and attacking crackheads, the problems never stopped. But neither did we stop shooting. Principal photography lasted over one year.
Kudos to my cast and crew for believing in the film and going through the endurance test with me. Nobody was doing it for the money, since there was none.

5) What one thing did you learn that you’d like to apply to your next film?

My films following Mime After Midnight were set in more controlled and remote locations. My lessons on Mime were well learned.

6) Do you have any plans for a feature film?


Absolutely. I’m currently trying to secure investment for a horror feature set at a camp. Friday the 13th was the first horror film I saw in the theater when I was a kid. It scarred and influenced me for life. Now its my time to go to camp and create something that will terrify a new generation in an all new way. The wicked humor from my short films is going out the window now as I focus on an exercise in unbearable suspense and big scares.
Anybody with a creepy camp at your disposal, get in touch with me!

7) What is it about horror films that you like the most, as a fan as well as a director.

I love a good scare, on film or in print. I work in this genre with a passion every day, whether writing, developing, or directing. Even though I am a filmmaker and know the nuts and bolts of how these films are constructed, I still get freaked out by them on a regular basis. I scare myself with my own films. I’m a screamer and always looking for that next good scare.

8) How did it feel to be part of the first annual Big Bear Horror Film Festival?

It felt awesome. I’m always happy to reach a new audience, and the first Big Bear Horror Film Festival gathered together an impressive group who share my love of this genre. I hope to be involved with this festival in some capacity for years to come.

9)What is your next project?

Besides Knife Happy and the camp feature, I have many other films in development, all horror features. In the event one project gets stalled, I have many more I’m eager to tackle.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Open Door



1. Where did you get the idea/inspiration for the movie The Open Door?

I have two partners on the film, Doc Duhame and Greg Hobson, and we had been working on various ideas for producing a first feature film together, the main project being centered on the concept of a women alone in a isolated place being tormented by supernatural forces. We had a first draft of that concept and were in re-writes when Doc mentioned he had been listening to a radio show that was all about the unexplained phenomena out there in the universe. We had been stuck in that first draft and it kept getting bigger and bigger budget wise, so when Doc pitched us on switching to a story still focused on a girl alone in a house, but with the radio element, Greg and I just thought, "great that's it, let's do it".

2. What was it like working with younger actors?

It was absolutely one of the best parts of the entire experience. Since I'm an actor myself I naturally jumped in and became the casting director, which I had experience with from my theater days. We really didn't do anything out of the ordinary regarding the process...we did the breakdown and had pretty large initial auditions that then went to a callback. But we did have second callbacks for almost ever character...there were so many good actors to choose from. We were up front with everybody about this film being a pretty physical project, not only the storyline and stunts, but being shot mostly at night it was going to be a very difficult shoot. Short answer is, our cast was amazing, a wonderful energy, humor and work ethic the entire time...many of the cast went on to become good friends. Just like life, films are about relationships, and the team of people we were blessed to work with on this project was the gold! I know we will all be working together on other projects throughout our careers.


3. Where did the idea for the radio show come from?

As I mentioned before we had been working on another concept that kept getting bigger budget wise, and when Doc mention the radio show and using that as the access to the supernatural world, Greg and I just thought it was a great idea. Now the woman alone in our earlier concept became a high school student home alone the night of the big party. It helped us to keep it small enough to execute with a limited budget as well as concentrate on character development. We love the fact that one of our actors (Danny Booko) won a Best Supporting Actor award at the 2009 Horror UK Film Festival.

4. Tell us about the special effects of the movie, especially the burn scene.

Everybody loves the burn, especially us. Well, since Doc is a stuntman we knew we would be able to ask some big favors regarding the action in the film. Doc is very experienced in all aspects of stunts and burns are just part of a stuntmans resume. But the burn is special for a couple reasons; first off it's one of the biggest types of burns you'll see in any film, head to toe flames with the stuntmans face exposed. This is accomplished with a special gel and all the other elements needed to safely pull off a burn. Second, Doc's son Zack was the stuntman who did the burn (his first) and has since just continued his raise up the ranks in the stunt community. We tried to do as much practical action as we could, stunt doubles in the fight scenes with actors doing as much as was safe. In the sequences where actors were suspended in mid-air it was rigging and harnesses. We went over budget in post because we liked what we had so much we decided to sweeten the action where we could with VFX. I think the combination worked out well...that and the sound design to really make you feel some of the scares.

5. Tell us about your shooting schedule? How many days?

It was a 21 day schedule that went over with special shoot days of just stunts, or effects. The van shots were just a minimum crew with maybe an actor once or twice. We had lots of pieces we just had to pick up as we went along to fill all our spots, but I don't think any actor worked more than 20 days on the show.



6. What were some of the challenges you faced making this film?

Shooting at night was the single biggest challenge...I would advise anyone to seriously try to avoid a schedule of extended night shoots if at all possible. If you have to you have to, but it takes a toll and at one point you would probably save money by rigging for night in your interiors. The other obvious challenge faced by all indie filmmakers is limited resources. I wish we had more of everything...money, time, equipment etc. But after eight film festivals and having won six awards I feel we gave a good accounting for ourselves.

7. What did you learn this time that you can apply to your next film?

A huge list of things learned, but I would start by saying you simply can't plan too much. Everything that can go wrong does...as well as stuff that shouldn't. You need to be flexible, creative and realistic. If you put the right group of people together you should be ok, but even at that you better plan every detail you can possibly think of...and have plan B,C,D...ready to go just in case. The biggest and one of the toughest things to do in filmmaking is simply to finish...really complete the film. Post production is fully a third of your film...be ready for something that is every bit as hard as shooting a show!

8. How did it feel to be part of the first annual Big Bear Horror Film Festival?

It was great fun and an honor to be a part of something new...especially in such a beautiful and historic place as Big Bear. Great film history in Big Bear, and a wonderful place to go for any reason. The people were terrific and the facility was beautiful. I hope to have more projects in future festivals there.

9. So you won the award for Outstanding Special Effects Make up….how did that make you feel?

It was wonderful. Especially since, in our case, we had a couple of very talented but new make-up artist's working our show. In fact it was their first pro gig. Genna Garner and Erika Godfrey were fresh out of the Westmore academy when we found them. They were so young that when we first met them for the interview we really didn't hold out much hope. They're both a couple of very cute young girls who just didn't look the part. So we'd ask them things we thought would throw them like, how do you make real looking brains? And they would look at each other for a moment and then ask us detailed brain questions like...freshly killed or decomposing? We knew we had the right girls then. Their work on Danny Booko in the burn aftermath sequence was just awesome.

10. What is your next project?

Since THE OPEN DOOR I produced an action comedy short film called THE ACTION HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING LIVES which stars Patrick Warburton (Seinfeld, The Tick, Rules of Engagement) and we won BEST COMEDY at 2009 DRAGON CON FILM FESTIVAL. The response has been so positive to the short film that we want to make a feature film version. I have a number of other projects waiting in the wings, but it's just a matter of what would be the best project to do now. You have to look at a lot of factors before you pull the trigger on something...marketplace...resources...talent. The good news is I will certainly be shooting something later this year...and that's the trick, you have to keep making films. So onward and upward I go...hopefully I'll be seeing you guys soon at the next Big Bear Horror Film Festival...if only as a fan!


video

Monday, January 18, 2010

Palazzo Massacre





1) Explain the inspiration for Palazzo Massacre, ie where did you get the idea for the mask?

The idea for the story came up during a dinner with executive producer Randall Meyers. We had been working late that night in school (he was my teacher), and we had a couple of drinks and started to throw back and forth some different concepts we could work with. We came up with the idea for a man who marries women, and then kills her entire family when he's bored. Not the best plot in the world, but it was point of making the short film was to give me experience as a director. I had only directed a couple of 30 sec commercials prior.

Mr. Meyers is living in a beautiful place in Italy, and we decided during dinner that we had to make the project there. It would give the film a great look as well as production value, and throw me into something really challenging.
I wrote the script in a week, resulting in lack of story and bad dialogue, but also a lot of exciting stuff I could work with.
I wanted to make a Dario Argento inspired look, but still make it my own in terms of angles and scenography. The mask of the killer is something I'm particularly satisfied with. I felt I wanted to have something androgyne about it, and we found the clean mask, only called "female face", and I loved it instantly and thought it would be great with some adjustments. And I feel it was.


2) Do you write/direct horror films only? Why horror?

I have focused on horror the last 3-4 years, to get the experience in writing a genre. I love horror to death, but I also see myself working with action, drama and musical films as well. One of the reasons I love working with horror, is the fact that I love the feeling of being scared and I want to bring others the same joy!
Some people call me sick, but I actually like lying in bed convincing myself something horrible is in the room. The other night I had to go out of bed checking my dirty clothes hamper, because I was sure there was a nasty little demon under my long johns! It wasn't, but better safe than sorry...


3)Is the Norwiegan government supportive of independent filmmaking?

The Norwegian government supports all kinds of movies, and ONLY independent filmmaking. We have an arrangement today calles 50-50 which means a production company can get up to 50% of the actual cost of the movie, and get 50% from private financing.


4) Tell us about your shooting schedule for Palazzo Massacre

We shoot it in 5-6 days, I guess. Don't remember exactly but I think we shoot 5 days in Italy and 1 day in Norway. I moved the scene where the mother gets killed to Norway, because I felt we didn't have the perfect location or the time to shoot it right in Italy.


5)What were some of the challenges you faced making a horror film?

Making it scary! I feel I didn't succeed as much as I wanted, but I'm very satisfied with some scenes and the experience of it all.
I had never worked with actors on a "big" project like that before, and flying cast and crew to a foreign country as well, was very stressful and demanding.
Making my actors believe in what they were doing and saying is also very hard when you're unexperienced and the script is lacking certain elements. But hey, there's no fun when it's not challenging!





6)If you could do one thing different on your next film what would it be?

One thing? Not one, but one hundred I guess... I woud definitely focus more on the story. Second I'd use a different style, making it less static, and give it a lot more scary! I had to cut a lot of shots I wanted and was mostly stuck with W.S. and M.S. in the editing room, and lacked all the good close ups I love so much. So that's something I'll never let go again.


7)How did it feel to be part of the first ever Big Bear Horror Film Festival?

It felt great to be screened at BBHFF, even though I didn't have the money to travel from Norway to the States to actually be there. I feel honored to have screened along with some great movies, and to have been judged by some of the industry's legendary horror writers/directors. It makes me proud of course, and makes me want to go on and direct more movies :)


8) You won Best Director for Palazzo Massacre in this year’s festival. Explain how that made you feel.


I am a huge fan of Mary Lambert, and I love her work. Her films has scared the s**t out me when I was a kid. And I guess they still do... So to learn she was one of the judges, made me very excited just to have someone like that see my work. And then I learned I won, and that she and Don Coscarelli had presented the award. Coscarelli is also someone I admire very much, and I actually met him three years prior when visiting L.A.

The Best Director Award made me very very happy, and very vey very proud. Not only for myself, but also for my cast and crew. I have to take my hat off to my producer Pål Ivar Myhre and exec. producer/composer Randall Meyers for actually believing in me and wanted to make this movie with me.
For a young writer/director as myself, I think it's always important to be recognized for your work, because you're constantly doubting yourself and you feel you can do so much better. For others to see potential in you as an artist is just really inspiring and energizing. I wish to thank the jury very much for giving me this award.

9)What is your favorite horror film?

That's the hardest question so far... I could go on and on and on.... But I think I must say the original Halloween. Michael Myers is bar none the scariest killer ever. I have spent so many nights awake looking out the window for him, under my bed, in the closet and so on...
And I feel I must mention The Descent by Neil Marshall. I feel that movie was just so spot on in terms of what it was going for. Scary, psychological and very entertaining. It felt complete and didn't really need a sequel.
At last I have to say that, even though it's not branded a horror movie, The Road, is some of the scariest stuff I've seen in a long time. It's a zombie movie, but with real people instead of zombies. The human aspect of it, is making it very disturbing and horrifying and it feels like I've been watching a horror movie.


10) What is your next project?

I just finished my first horror feature script, and the goal is to produce that next year. It's a pretty classic story and in the same genre as Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Friday 13th.
I am currently writing on an adaptation of Snow White, more true to the original story, but set in a very dark and gothic universe. This is going to be a short film and maybe something I'll direct this year if we can raise the money for it.


To finish it off, I just want to say thank you to the Big Bear Horror Film Festival and wish you good luck in the future, and hope to attend the festival some day.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Meet our new judge: Brandon Harris




Brandon Harris, Writer, Director, Cinematographer, Editor, Producer, Casting Director, Actor

Brandon’s interest in filmmaking started at the age of 12 while he was attending junior high school in the place that he grew up; Granada Hills, California. The highlight of his acting career was a featured spot on a pilot starring Tim Curry. Unfortunately due to family desires he was asked to pursue a ‘real job’ so after high school dove into computer science. After a less than desirable GPA, personal growth and independence told him to choose the route his dreams laid out, to become an influential filmmaker.
Brandon is currently attending community college in an effort to raise his GPA and increase his knowledge in the art of filmmaking. It’s working out smoothly and he’s made plans to attend Chapman College in Orange County for his undergraduate and California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, CA for his Masters in Directing.
Brandon’s student films help him to define his unique talents in a supportive yet critical environment. The help gained through the teachings from his CalArts graduate instructors has been most inspiring. His most influential instructors are Mike Ott, who directed the indie features Analog Days (2006) and A. Effect (2008), and actor/writer/director/editor Dave Nordstrom.
Brandon’s resume consists of a series of short films taken on from his education, most notably Portrait of a Monster, which was his filmmaking debut. His other films consist of 1 music video for Stonefeather, his A.A. thesis film, the French-American infused L’amour Est… (2009), 2 documentaries, and multiple experimental narratives.