Brand New Exclusive Interview With Actor Zak Kilberg
By James Whittington, Thursday 8th September 2011

Zak KilbergMidnight Son is a gem of a vampire move that I was lucky enough to see at this year's FrightFest event. The lead character of Jacob is played by Zak Kilberg, a talented actor who gives a stunning performance of a young man who is desperately trying to come to terms with the fact that he's a little bit different to everyone else. We spoke to Zak about this and his plans for the future.

HC: Did you know from a young age that you wanted to be an actor?

ZK: Oh yes! Took my first acting class at 7 years old and fell in love with it.

HC: Where did you get your first big break?

ZK: Still waiting on that. Maybe Midnight Son! I've acted in 12 Indie films over the past 6 years but Midnight Son is by far my favourite. The truth is I haven't been pursuing much acting since we wrapped Midnight Son and have since gotten heavily involved in producing my own films.

HC: How did you get the part of Jacob in Midnight Son?

ZK: My good friend and talented actor David Fine referred me to writer/director Scott Leberecht's initial website for the film and I immediately felt a strong connection to the main role of Jacob. I reached out to Scott directly by sending him the short film Nameless in which I had recently produced, directed and starred in. He connected to the material and in fact we were both pretty excited by the fact that I actually resembled Scott's early drawings and sketches of Jacob before even meeting each other. Scott then sent me the script, which I connected to even further. As he was San Francisco based at the time and I was in LA, I sent him an audition DVD by mail. He liked it and invited me to read with him in person when I was traveling up to SF for the San Francisco International Film Festival later that spring. He called and offered me the role the day after we met in person.

HC: What did you think of the script when you first read it?

ZK: I thought the script was intense, personal and beautifully written. The script hooked me from page one of my first read. There were a few elements that needed further development and Scott made it clear he was eager to collaborate in that capacity. We worked extremely well together and within a month or two of development had something we were both even more pleased with and excited to shoot.

HC: How do you prepare for such a role?

ZK: The first thing I decided to do was a 10 day fast to make myself more physically emaciated for the role as Jacob is really suffering from a form of starvation when the film begins. As there was no personal trainer or doctor to help guide the process I wasn't able to go as extreme as Christian Bale in The Machinist, however I was able to shed close to 20lbs for the role and I'm pretty scrawny to begin with. I maintained a meagre diet for the entire run of filming. Scott really pushed me in that capacity and I'm grateful he did. I also worked through each scene of the script extensively getting deeper into the role and in the understanding of who Jacob was and what he wanted and needed for each scene and strived to find the thread and truth of his character throughout the entire story.

HC: Were you given the chance to improvise at all?

ZK: The script was so strong there wasn't much need for improvisation, at least with the dialogue. Scott definitely allowed for being in the moment though so there are a few exciting improvised moments in the film.

HC: You spend a lot of the screen time with co-star Maya Parish who plays Mary, what were your first impressions of her?

ZK: First impression: Maya Parish is a beautiful and dedicated actress with the talent and passion of any academy award winner. Second impression: THE SAME

HC: The end scene (without giving anything away) is beautiful in a really chilling way, would you agree?

ZK: Strongly agree. I love the way the ending turned out. Scott and I talked a lot about potential endings for the film while developing the script and in the 1-month before production we came up with at least 3 variations together. The final decision we went with that made it into the film was actually one of my ideas that we developed together. I'm really proud of that and very grateful to Scott's creative openness. It is one of the qualities that makes him a truly exceptional director and an absolute pleasure to work with.

HC: It’' a very real "vampire"movie are you a fan of the genre?

ZK: I'm not necessarily a fan of the "vampire" genre but I am a devoted fan to realistic and gritty indie films. Scott did an incredible job at merging the two genre’s so in that capacity yes, HUGE FAN!

HC: So what's next for you?

ZK: Since wrapping Midnight Son nearly 3 years ago, I've since started my own film production company called Social Construct. We currently have 2 feature films in post-production: Alyce with Sundance alumni director Jay Lee (New World Order, Zombie Strippers) and Would You Rather with Periscope Entertainment (Terri, August) and director David Guy Levy.

HC: Zak Kilberg, thank you very much.

ZK: Thank YOU, Sir!

Interview with Julien Seri, director of Anderson Falls
Posted on Tuesday 18th February 2020

Ahead of the UK premiere of serial killer thriller Anderson Falls at Arrow Video FrightFest Glasgow 2020, director Julien Seri reflects on this, his first 'American' experience, challenging fight scenes and the importance of personal vision.

It has been five years since we premiered Night Fare at FrightFest London, what have you been up to since then?

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

When did you first hear about the Anderson Falls script and why did you think it was perfect for yo...

Interview with Adam Stovall, director of A Ghost Waits
Posted on Sunday 9th February 2020

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

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

AS: I've known since I was a little kid sitting in the basement watching the network TV premiere of Back To The Future while holding my Back To The Future storybook and waiting for them to premiere the first footage from Back To The Future 2 during a commercial br...

Interview with Simeon Halligan, director of Habit
Posted on Sunday 9th February 2020

Simeon Halligan is one of the busiest people working in the industry today. Writer, director, producer, director of celebrated film festival Grimmfest, in fact the list goes on.

His latest film is the neon tinged, blood-splattered masterpiece Habit which is showing on Horror February 14th so we thought we should get the story on how he brought this shocker to the big screen.

HC: When did you first become aware of the book by Stephen McGeagh to which Habit is based?

SH: I read the book a couple of years back and really liked it. A combination of gritty realism and dark fantasy; set within a very recognisable Manchester. There's a juxtaposition in the book; from a kind of soc...

Interview with Jackson Stewart, director of Beyond The Gates
Posted on Wednesday 22nd January 2020

Jack Stewart's sublime retro horror Beyond the Gates was recently shown on Horror. Jackson is one of the strongest creatives around at the moment but he took time out of his busy schedule to talk to us about this contemporary classic and his future movie plans.

HC: Was there one film that you saw growing up which gave you the idea that you wanted to work in the film industry?

JS: There were definitely a number of them; I think the ones that stick out strongest in my memory were Temple Of Doom, Batman '89, Nightmare On Elm Street 4, Raising Arizona, Back To The Future, Marnie, Army Of Darkness, The Frighteners and Dirty Harry. All of them had a big emotional impact on me. Dirty Har...

Interview with acclaimed author Shaun Hutson
Posted on Friday 20th December 2019

The British horror legend Shaun Hutson is back with Testament, a new novel featuring one of his fans most loved characters, Sean Doyle so we decided to catch up with this talented chap about his acclaimed work.

HC: Was there one author who inspired you to become a writer?

SH: My inspirations were always and still are cinematic if I'm honest. Even when I first started writing my influences and inspirations came from things like Hammer films, from TV series like The Avengers (with Diana Rigg and Patrick Macnee) and from old Universal horror films. I read the Pan Books of Horror Stories when I was a kid and I think they were probably the first "literary" influences I ever had. I also read lo...

Interview with Tyler MacIntyre, director of Patchwork
Posted on Thursday 12th December 2019
On the eve of Horror Channel's UK TV premiere of Patchwork on December 14th, director Tyler MacIntyre reflects on body image issues. twisting audience expectations and his admiration for current female genre directors.

HC: Patchwork finally gets its UK TV premiere on Horror Channel. Excited or what?

TM: Relieved actually. It's been a long time coming. The third screening of the film ever happened at FrightFest in Glasgow and since then I've had people asking me when it was going to come out. The UK genre fans are among the most diehard in the world, so I'm very excited to finally have it available for them.

HC: You were in attendance when Patchwork, your directorial feature debut, rece...

Interview with James Moran, writer of Tower Block
Posted on Monday 25th November 2019

Writer James Moran is about to do what few other writers have done in the past, the Horror Channel Triple! He is one of the few creatives who has had three of his movies play on the channel; Cockneys Vs Zombies, Severance and now Tower Block which is playing on November 29th. So, we decided to chat to this talented chap about this superior thriller and the rest of his career.

HC: Your first movie, Severance is a huge favourite with Horror Channel viewers, were you ever tempted to pen a sequel?

JM: Thank you, I'm really glad that people can still discover it with every new screening. Everybody wanted to do a sequel, we actually had several meetings about it. Nothing came of it, they carried on with...

Interview with Gary Dauberman, writer and director of Annabelle Comes Home
Posted on Saturday 23rd November 2019

Gary Dauberman has been the scriptwriter for some of the most successful horror movies of the last few years including IT: Parts 1 and 2, Annabelle and The Nun. His latest movie, Annabelle Comes Home which is also his directorial debut, has just been released onto DVD and Blu-ray. We caught up with this talented chap about his career to date.

HC: What was it about the horror genre that grabbed your imagination and made you want to become a writer?

GD: The earliest movie going experience I can remember was my parents taking me to Raiders of the Lost Ark and I was 4 or 5 or something and I had to sleep with them for a week, you know the opening up of The Ark and the face melting, a rea...

Interview with Cameron Macgowan, director of Red Letter Day
Posted on Friday 1st November 2019

FrightFest 2019 exposed a lot of new talent in the movie industry and one of the stand-out pieces was Red Letter Day from Cameron Macgowan.

HC: Where did the idea for Red Letter Day come from and did it take long to write?

CM: I have long been a fan of the 'Humans Hunting Humans' subgenre of film (Battle Royale, The Running Man, Hard Target, etc.) and was inspired to set one of these films in what many people consider the 'safe' location of the suburbs. Suburban communities feel like the perfect setting for a horror film as you can walk for miles without seeing a single soul all while knowing that you are surrounded by many people. This mixed with a desire to satirise the current socio-political climate ...

Interview with Carlo Mirabella-Davis, director of Swallow
Posted on Wednesday 30th October 2019

Ahead of the UK premiere of Swallow at Arrow Video FrightFest Halloween, director Carlo Mirabella-Davis reflects on the personal inspiration behind his feature debut, healing psychological wounds and his empathy for the genre.

HC: Swallow is your directorial debut. How difficult was it to get the project off the ground?

CMD: Getting a film made is a fascinating process. My late, great teacher at NYU, Bill Reilly, would always say "script is coin of the realm". The early stages involved perfecting the screenplay as much as I could, writing and rewriting until I felt confident sending it out. The sacred bond between the producer and the director is the catalyst that brings a film into being. I ...

Interview with Paul Davis, director of Uncanny Annie
Posted on Wednesday 16th October 2019

Ahead of the International premiere of Uncanny Annie at Arrow Video FrightFest Halloween 2019, director Paul Davis reflects on working for Blumhouse, bemoans attitudes to British genre film funding and reveals the movies that inspire him the most...

HC: Tell us how Uncanny Annie came about?

PD: Uncanny Annie is my second movie for Blumhouse as part of Hulu's Into The Dark movie series. I had the opportunity to actually kick off last October with a feature adaptation of my short film The Body (which had its world premiere at FF in 2013). The concept was to release a movie a month, for twelve months, with each revolving around a holiday or particular day for the month of its released. With The Bod...

Interview with Lars Klevberg, director of Child's Play (2019)
Posted on Thursday 10th October 2019
CHILDS_PLAY_Universal_2D_BD_Pakcshot_UKIt was the remake everyone was against! The interweb was ablaze with negativity but director Lars Klevberg and his team managed to pull off one of the best horror movies of 2019. Here he chats about the smart shocker, Child's Play.

HC: How nervous were you taking on a re-imagining of such a beloved concept and franchise?

LK: I was in fact very nervous the minute I signed on to do the movie. Before that, I worked relentlessly for weeks to get the job, but immediately after getting it my body had a very stressful reaction. I was fully aware of the legacy I was about to re-open so, I didn't sleep one minute that night.

HC: W...

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The Unspoken
Monday 24th February
9.00 PM
Hollow Man
Tuesday 3rd March
10.35 PM
Red State
Wednesday 4th March
10.50 PM