ARTICLES

LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS

Exclusive Interview With CUT! Competition 2008 Winner Paul Shrimpton
By James Whittington, Saturday 22nd November 2008

Paul Shrimpton won The Zone Horror CUT! Short Film Competition 2008. Here he lets us in on how the story came about, what he’s going to do with the £5000 that he won an his plans for the future.

ZH: Have you always been a fan of the horror genre?

PS: Yeah. I remember being about seven and staying up late to watch the BBC horror double bills, things like ‘The Reincarnation of Peter Proud’, ‘Horror at 37,000 Feet’, all the Hammer stuff and some of the Roger Corman ‘Poe’ adaptations. The first video I ever rented was ‘The Deadly Spawn’ in the early eighties, then the next week it was ‘Night Beast’, ‘The Exterminator’ . . .all the classics, ahem.

ZH: What’s your daytime profession?

PS: I’m a Postman, and it’s pants. Really, really, really pants.

ZH: How did you learn about the Cut! Competition?

PS: I’d seen the previous comp (2006) advertised on the net and missed out on that one, but swore I’d enter the next, and so I did.

ZH: How long did it take you to come up with the idea for Hung Up?

PS: It took a while actually because it was originally going to be a bit different. It was going to be called ‘Bully’ and be about some kids at school that had bullied this bloke and it led into the whole suicide note and twist that’s in ‘Hung Up’. But the shoot was postponed a couple of months and that gave the story time to change/evolve into what it is now.

ZH: Was it a difficult shoot?

PS: No, it was a breeze. When we were shooting outdoors it was early Feb, so really cold. Jen (the girlfriend that bites the dust) didn’t appreciate having to be drenched in fake blood for a two – three hour stretch. Half frozen but, everyone seemed to have fun and it went without a hitch.

ZH: Is it true you made it for £40?

PS: Yes it is. I shot it all on my old kit which was a PD-150. I paid Ozan £10 for petrol money for the driving around he did. £10 for two DVcam tapes bought from eBay and £20 to Graham Taylor to build me a fake head.

ZH: Is Hung Up the first horror short that you’ve made?

PS: No, I started messing about with a video camera when I was about 14. Then two years later we made a 50min post-apocalyptic superhero film called ‘The Return of the Paper Bag Man and Friends’. This film featured such Thirsk-ish delights as cocaine snorting in a phone box, a car crash, a Neanderthal man, a kung fu waster, feet drilled to a skateboard, a notorious mass murderer turned vigilante anti-hero, mopeds from the future, etc etc . …all done pretty badly but it got us a bit of recognition in some of the horror fanzines kicking about at the time and it led on to some other shorts until I did ‘Slow Rot’ in 1994. That got shown on Channel 4 through ‘Take Over TV’ but in a cut down version. And then after a couple of aborted shorts I got into being in bands. Did the Punk/Ska UK circuit in different bands (currently play bass for ‘Deadbeat At Dawn’) and it was a good laugh. But film fever got me again in 2005 and we attempted to do a feature version of ‘Slow Rot’, but it went disastrously t**s up. Sold my DVD collection in 2006 to buy my own kit (the PD-150) and made a few no budget music videos and a twenty three minute short entitled ‘Dear Diary’ which was about a crazy loner whose dead mother torments him from beyond the grave, forcing him to dig her remains up and grant her, her final wish. A game of bingo. . . that’s had mixed reactions.

ZH: What was your reaction when you learned that you had come first?

PS: Gob smacked, in a bit of a daze, it’s not every day you win £5,000. But every week would be nice.

ZH: What did you think of the other entries, were there others you really liked?

PS: I honestly thought that ‘Quarry’ was going to win it. The way it looked was fantastic, it was great! I really liked Karl Holts ‘Halfway’ too, was a freaky one with some awesome visuals.

ZH: What are you going to do with the money?

PS: What have I done with the money? A lot went on paying off some debts I incurred when I upgraded to a Hi-Def cam, which was about three weeks before I heard I’d won, so the timing of the win was good. The rest is going on my next project.

ZH: What advice would you give to people who wish to enter the next CUT! Competition?

PS: Hmm, I’d say try to develop a story that you can do cheaply. Spend a lot of time planning. Try to put a twist in there and if you can’t be good, be different.

ZH: Will you be entering again?

PS: Umm, yeah, why not.

ZH: What’s next for you?

PS: Well I’m prepping a short (75-80 min) feature entitled ‘Basement Beast’. It’s homage to monster films of the early eighties. We’re doing everything old school on this. No CGI, but plenty of mattes, miniatures and latex monster madness. It’ll be the first ever Yorkshire monster film, we’ll be shooting over the best part of 2009 and it’s gonna be absolutely wild. I’m also in post with a twenty five minute version of ‘Hung Up’ called ‘Suffer’ which has more violence and rude words. That should be ready for Jan 2009. Also got a few music vids lined up so it’s all good.

ZH: Paul Shrimpton, thank you very much.


MORE INTERVIEWS
Interview with Airell Hayles writer and co-director of They're Outside
Posted on Saturday 1st August 2020
Airell Hayles

FrightFest is once again on the horizon but this time, due to global events the event has become a virtual experience with all films being accessed online. Horror is once again sponsoring the First Blood strand of the event. Here we chat to Airell Hayles whose movie They're Outside mixes found footage and pagan horror genres to great effect.

HC: Where did the idea for They're Outside come from?

AH: This idea for They're Outside came from a couple of things. I remember as a kid hearing that my uncle suffered mild agoraphobia, and when I learned what it was, I was fascinated by this idea of some people being kind of scared to leave their homes. Of course, the recent Covid-19 events h...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Fionn and Toby Watts, directors of Playhouse
Posted on Saturday 1st August 2020
Toby and Fionn Clapper 1

FrightFest is once again on the horizon but this time, due to global events the event has become a virtual experience with all films being accessed online. Horror is once again sponsoring the First Blood strand of the event. Here we chat to talented brothers Fionn and Toby Watts who have delivered a gothic, creepy piece named Playhouse.

HC: Was there one film or person who influenced or inspired you to become film makers?

FW: As a young boy I remember being absolutely blown away by the image of The Terminator's exo-skeleton rising from the flames. Around the same time I saw Candyman at a sleepover (rented by my friend's 'older' brother...) and it was such an i...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Tony and Ryan Smith co-writers of Volition.
Posted on Tuesday 7th July 2020
Volition

FrightFest 2019 delivered some amazing movies and one of the best was Volition from the talented brothers Tony and Ryan Smith. Now that the movie has been unleashed onto Apple TV, Prime Video and other Digital Platforms we chatted to them about this acclaimed movie and their plans for the future.

HC: You both hail from South Africa, what's the movie industry like in that country at the moment?

TDS: I believe the South African film industry is very healthy and it's a place Ryan and I would love to revisit and make a movie about. I have a number of filmmaker friends who film there and absolutely love the people, the scenery and the incredible crews.

HC: Did you know from an...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Adam Green, director of Victor Crowley
Posted on Wednesday 13th May 2020

Ahead of Horror Channel's UK TV premiere of Adam Green's Victor Crowley, the great director shares his personal tragedies, George Romero's inspirational words, the importance of genre comedy and hints that the Bayou Butcher may rise again...

HC: Adam, you're back on Horror Channel with your latest Hatchet instalment, Victor Crowley. Excited?

AG: I'm always thrilled to hear that another one of my films will be playing on the UK's Horror Channel! It's crazy to think that the US hasn't had a horror specific television channel in 6 years now, only horror themed subscription platforms like Shudder. Then again - look at the real life horror we're dealing with here as far as our current President goes...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Lukas Feigelfeld, director of Hagazussa
Posted on Friday 17th April 2020

The themes of witchcraft and the occult are making a bit of a come back at the moment. Movies such as The Witch and Midsommer have brought the genre back into focus and now Hagazussa from writer/director Lukas Feigelfeld takes the genre to another, even darker level. Here he chats about this incredibly atmospheric movie which is being released on May 11th thanks to Arrow Video.

HC: Where did the idea for Hagazussa come from and how long did it take to write?

LF: I had been living with the idea of doing something witch and folklore related for many years. Part of my family originates from this particular area in the Austrian Alps, and from a young age on I was greatly fascin...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with actor Nicholas Vince star of Hellraiser and Hellbound: Hellraiser II
Posted on Monday 30th March 2020

Fridays in April on Horror will deliver to you three of the most viscous and acclaimed horror movies ever made, Hellraiser, Hellraiser II: Hellbound and Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth. One of the stars of the first two movies was Nicholas Vince who brought so much to the character of "Chatterer".

Here he, err, chats to Horror about how he become involved in such memorable movies and his plans for the future.

(Photo credit Dawson James Photography)

HC: When did you first meet Clive Barker?

NV: I met him at a party in May 1984. We got on well and he invited me to model for him; for his painted covers of the first UK hardback editions of his Books of Blood.

HC: What...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Jen and Sylvia Soska, directors of Vendetta
Posted on Thursday 19th March 2020
Vengeance Season on Horror contains the UK TV premiere of Vendetta, the superb all-male maelstrom of mayhem from Jen and Sylvia Soska. We chatted to these incredible talented creatives about this action-packed thriller and what they have planned for the future.

HC: Have you always been wrestling fans and if so, when growing up, who were your faves?

Sylvia: We got introduced to wrestling during the epic Kane brother storyline during the Undertaker and Heartbreak Kid feud that led to the first ever Hell in a Cell. I mean after that kind of an introduction; how doesn't the magic of wrestling have your heart for the rest of your life? If it isn't obvious, I'm a Shawn Michaels fan.

Jen: Und...

SHARE: READ MORE
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...

SHARE: READ MORE
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...

SHARE: READ MORE
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...

SHARE: READ MORE
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...

SHARE: READ MORE
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...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interviews Archive: 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006
PICK OF THE WEEK
Late Phases
LATE PHASES
Tuesday 11th August
10.45 PM
The Unfolding
THE UNFOLDING
Thursday 13th August
10.50 PM
Boo
BOO
Sunday 16th August
10.35 PM