This week, we are excited to spotlight our first male talent to watch. From our interactions on social media and during our interview, we have come to know Guy Crawford as an extremely wise and friendly person. His eagerness to help other screenwriters and filmmakers succeed is apparent in all of his Twitter post. I'd even be willing to bet, if you needed something, Guy would be the first person to give you the shirt off of his back.
For these reasons, I'm excited to share some of his own story as a screenwriter. We discuss his hometown of New Orleans and why it's a great setting for horror. He sent us photos he took of historical places around New Orleans while doing more research for his stories.
He shares the advice he has received from Hollywood professionals and goes in-depth on the history of his very own projects.
The Pierce Brothers, Writers/Directors of "The Wretched," Talk Indie Filmmaking, Drive-in Success, and Witch Folklore
Brothers Drew and Brett Pierce grew up in a horror household. Their father, Bart, worked on the special effects for The Evil Dead, including the infamous meltdown sequence near the conclusion. As children, they encountered props from the film in their basement and can recall stories their mom shared about director Sam Raimi and crew taking over their house. Now, the brothers have grabbed headlines after their film The Wretched, a creature feature about a witch invading a lakeshore town, found an audience thanks to distributor IFC Midnight’s decision to screen it at drive-ins across the country, thus making it the #1 box office film as theaters remain closed.
The LA-based directors/writers talked to us about their influences, witch folklore, and the film’s success after it made the festival rounds last year, including at bigger fests like Fantasia and smaller fests like HorrOrigins, where it snagged two awards for Best Actor and Best Feature.
We are on our third interview for "talent to watch" and are astonished by the amount of rising talent that we are finding. So far, all of our interviews have been strong women screenwriters and filmmakers. We're ecstatic and honored to have the opportunity to highlight the amazing talented women that we have.
This week, we jump into a great conversation with screenwriter and producer Tracee Beebe. She goes in-depth about how she got started, her obsession with some little shark movie called Jaws and offers valuable filmmaking tips and advice.
With a promising start to her career, we are excited to interview writer Eva Gonzalez Szigriszt. After reading her material, she was signed quickly by a manager and the opportunities started to arise. Now she is working on projects for Facebook and Crypt TV, working with Hollywood producers and her screenplay Turn was recognized by the Tracking Board Hit List for 2019.
HorrOrigins is focused on recognizing indie talent on the verge of breaking out. We will be searching for new screenwriters and filmmakers to spotlight. For this interview we have the honor of interviewing Lisa Jay. Lisa is a screenwriter who has found success at Stowe Story Labs, The Bitchlist, WIF Blacklist Labs (finalist) and the Austin Film Festival, just to name a few.
Xavier Burgin’s documentary Horror Noire is a must-see not only for horror fans but film fans in general. The Shudder exclusive is based on Robin R. Means Coleman’s book of the same name. It covers over 100 years of film history, starting with Birth of a Nation and the negative stereotypes it perpetuated about black Americans. From there, it analyzes the tropes that exist within horror, while also highlighting innovative black filmmakers like Blacula director William Crain and Ganja & Hess director Bill Gunn. All of this leads to the massive success of Jordan Peele’s Get Out. Featuring interviews with Tony Todd (Candyman), Ken Foree (Dawn of the Dead), and Rachel True (The Craft), among many others, Horror Noire truly is a comprehensive doc about black horror cinema. Burgin talked to us about the success of his film and how it’s changed the conversation about black cinema, while acknowledging that the negative tropes the doc highlights still persist in Hollywood. He also chatted about some of his favorite horror flicks and his plans post-Horror Noire.
In 2019, director Ari Aster released one of the most popular contemporary American horror films, Midsommar. As with all films, the stories on the big screen are typically an accumulation of the best ideas from multiple brilliant creative minds. In this instance, one of those people happens to be producer Patrik Andersson. Patrik is the Head of Development for B-Reel Films. He joins us to tell us more about his journey as a young filmmaker through the censorships of Sweden to gaining some experience as a festival programmer, working in distribution then eventually stepping foot into the world of production.