ARTICLES

LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS

Interview with acting legend Barbara Crampton about her role in Reborn
By James Whittington, Wednesday 19th August 2020
Barbara Crampton Red Dress

Ahead of Horror Channel's UK TV premiere of Julian Richards' Reborn, on Saturday 22 August, actress, producer and genre icon Barbara Crampton reflects on how You're Next changed the direction of her career, the joy of discovering new talent and the possibility of directing one day...

HC: Talk about art imitating real life! Reborn is about a B-Movie actress trying to get back in the game after a career rough patch. Is that what you responded to in the script?

BC: That was certainly something I could relate to. As I hit my late 30's, jobs started to dry up and the phone didn't ring as often. I was married around that time and my husband convinced me to move to San Francisco as he was being transferred with his work. I honestly thought I was leaving Hollywood and the film business behind. I wasn't sad as much as I looked forward to a new adventure with my husband and hoping for the children who came very quickly. I felt that perhaps I had already made my mark in Re-Animator and From Beyond and that would be that. About six years later, I received a call out of the blue to appear as the mom in You're Next. I did it as a lark, for fun, not knowing the filmmakers or their wild talent and not realizing the new path that special film would put me on. I feel like my character in Reborn was ME hoping to get a part for many years and then being fortunate enough to be offered a stellar film like You're Next. That would be akin to the role my character In Reborn receives from Peter Bogdanovich. So in reality, what happens to Lena in the film happened to me.

HC: Although director Julian Richards had you in mind for the part of Lena O'Neill early on, you were actually cast right at the very last minute. Was that jumping in with virtually no time to prepare a difficult challenge?

BC: Another wonderful actress was cast before me even though Julian had me in mind at the outset. Sometimes casting takes place by committee and not everyone gets their first pick. The other gal wasn't able to do the part after all and so I was called in with about 48 hours notice. It was a bit harrowing. I read the script once, packed up my car and drove down to LA within 24 hours. I knew many of the people on the film so I really leaned in for advice from our DP Brian Sowell, who also worked on Beyond The Gates, Michael Pare who I'd worked on Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich with and the effervescent Rae Dawn Chong, whom I didn't know, but became a close and trusted ally on set. Julian And I know each other well and he trusted me and I appreciated his gentle care in guiding me along on the role. We filmed many scenes in Brian Yuzna's house, which doubled for my character's residence and it was warm and welcoming to see him shuffling about in his slippers during our filming.

HC: Carrie and Frankenstein are the obvious inspirations for Reborn. Did you see any other resonances in the script you wanted to draw attention to?

BC: As far as the character of Tess is concerned those two films are apt references. For me and from the perspective of my character, the film is about regret and second chances and what gets in your way, if you let it. Lena is held back by something in her past. She's haunted by the death of her daughter and she just can't move forward. She's stuck both in both her head and heart. I actually looked at Rebecca (1940), as the leading character played by Joan Fontaine is stuck by the overwhelming shadow of her new husband's deceased wife. I also used aspects of It's A Wonderful Life. Jimmy Stewart as George Bailey is so consumed by his life, he can't see the goodness of what's right in front of him. Of course I always use myself. How would I feel if I were in the same circumstances as my character? My own children mean the world to me and if I'd lost one.... That thought are pretty devastating.

Reborn Image 1 Barbara Crampton

HC: You shot a lot of the movie in Brian Yuzna's house, the producer of your horror breakthrough Re-Animator. Did you ask him for that favour? Are all the framed movie posters a fixture in his house or just there to help your character's back-story?

BC: I believe John Penny, our producer, asked Brian if we could use his house. It's right off Hollywood Boulevard and it has a lot of old world charm and glamour. Perfect for Lena's house. Pretty much all the posters you see on the wall belong to Brian and some of the items reflect movies we've done together so it was perfect!

HC: What an incredible cast, some you worked with before; Chaz Bono, Michael Pare (Puppetmaster: The Third Reich, Rae Dawn Chong, Monte Markham (We Are Still Here) and more! Is a prior connection a blessing or a curse?

BC: It's always a blessing unless you didn't get along with someone! I started my career working with Jeffrey Combs, made 4 projects with him. The familiarity you have with someone always bleeds into the work and there's a comfort, especially on indie horror where you're working very quickly. I very much enjoy working with people I know and trust. It was a joy to work with the legend Monte Markham once more. Meeting Chaz Bono was fun, as he is so excited and passionate about the work, although we didn't have any scenes together. I do love working with new people as well. I feel like I learn something from just about everyone I work with and I am able to collect may new friends along the way.

HC: Did you ever expect to get so busy post You're Next?

BC: No! I thought it would be just a brief return to acting and that would be that. Yet, I had such a great time performing again, I knew I had to return to working if I could. I actively sought out more roles, hired a manager and became reacquainted with my agent. After I did Sunchoke, Road Games and We Are Still Here, I felt like people knew me again, that I was serious and committed to a second round of my career. People then started to call me. In the last few years, I've also been working as a producer and I can easily say I'm more excited about this business than ever! I don't intend to slow down.

Reborn Image 2 Barbara Crampton

HC: Your career resurgence has been one of the greatest and most gratifying aspects of the current genre scene. What do you see as the main differences between working with Stuart Gordon etc in the 1980's heyday as opposed to now?

BC: There's more being made. It's wider field and the kids today know more about all aspects of film making then in the 80's We all stayed in our lanes then: Director, actor, producer. But many wear more than one hat today and it's easier and more accessible to be able to go out and make something without a studio. The emergence of smaller film festivals has allowed new filmmakers to find an outlet for their art to be showcased and network with other like-minded creatives. A young filmmaker can get noticed and make a name for themselves through these fests. Hopefully they can parlay that into working on bigger material.

HC: Is directing something you would like to try? If so, what sort of horror subject would attract you the most?

BC: You really need to make a commitment to one project for at least a whole year and while the idea is intriguing to me to direct, I have so many other projects I'm developing as a producer and have the occasional acting gig and so it would be hard to fit in directing a feature. However, I would love to direct a short and I'm keeping my eye out for material for that possibility.

HC: As the First Lady of FrightFest, what value do you see in the global genre festival circuit of which you have become so much a beloved part?

BC: These fests are the lifeblood of independent genre cinema. All these global fests and the talented programmers who run them are like grand hosts who introduce the world to fresh and new voices. They are the biggest champions to new filmmakers, many of whom prove themselves to be so gifted, they are invited back again and again. Without them, how who we meet these new talents? The audiences love to watch new films and studios and distributors send scouts to check out emerging talent at film fests across the globe. Also, I am able to meet many genre loving and passionate cinephiles and the fest circuit is really so much fun! Movies, panels, karaoke, contests, celebrations!

HC: Finally, what's next for you?

BC: I produced and starred in Jakob's Wife, which we finished filming right before the Covid-19 shutdown. We are currently in post and it will be available sometime in 2021. I'm working hard on developing three other features and one TV show. Hope to see you all again soon in the flesh with hugs and love...

Reborn is broadcast on Horror Channel, Saturday 22 August at 9pm.


Related show tags: BEYOND THE GATES, REBORN, ROAD GAMES, WE ARE STILL HERE, YOU'RE NEXT
MORE FEATURES
Horror Channel to present a Halloween double-bill of Corin Hardy's The Hallow and Ante Novakovic's Fright Fest.
Posted on Tuesday 15th September 2020
Horror Channel Halloween social

October boasts eleven premieres on Horror Channel, including a hellish Halloween night double-bill of Corin Hardy's impressive Irish monster movie debut The Hallow and Ante Novakovic's rampant Halloween slasher Fright Fest. Both channel premieres will be broadcast on Saturday 31 October, at 9pm and 10.55pm respectively.

There are also four prime-time UK premieres: Demon chiller Firstborn, with Misfits star Antonia Laura Thomas, hashtag horror Selfie From Hell, the haunting, award-winning Echoes Of Fear and the pint-sized gold-digger is back in the sequel, Leprechaun Returns.

There are five further channel premieres: Pet, a twisted tale of obsession and ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Carpenter, King and Hodder usher in Horror Channel's September line-up of prime-time premieres
Posted on Thursday 20th August 2020
Horror Channel Sept - banner

Carpenter, King and Kane Hodder... genre royalty ushers in Horror Channel's September line-up of prime-time premieres, including the UK TV premiere of outlandish Brit Zom Com Shed of the Dead, starring Ewen MacIntosh, Lauren Socha, Emily Booth, Kane Hodder, Bill Moseley, Michael Berryman and Brian Blessed, followed by the Channel premieres of hard-core space thriller John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars, starring Natasha Henstridge, Ice Cube, Jason Statham and Pam Grier, and A Good Marriage, a gripping psychological thriller based on the Stephen King novella.

There are also UK TV premieres for supernatural heist thriller The Vault, starring James Franco, and Blumhouse...

SHARE: READ MORE
Arrow Video FrightFest announces August Digital Edition line-up and Horror Channel sponsors talent-seeking First Blood strand
Posted on Tuesday 28th July 2020
FrightFest Online-Logo-3_NEW

The UK's most popular horror and fantasy film festival celebrates its 21st bloody year with a special Digital edition, showcasing twenty-five films, from Thursday 27th August to Monday 31st August, including seven world premieres and sixteen UK premieres. Ten countries are represented from four continents in a deadly, daring and diverse programme exclusively presented to UK audiences.

Passes and tickets will go on sale Saturday 1 August and details on how to access the event and choose which films to watch are on the FrightFest website. All film screenings will be geo-locked to UK audiences and only accessible from within the United Kingdom.

The men...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel highlights six summer weekend shockers in its August premiere line-up
Posted on Thursday 16th July 2020
Horror Chanel - Aug banner

August is a wicked month on Horror Channel, as the UK's most popular small-screen destination for genre fans presents six summer weekend shockers, five FrightFest hits including the UK TV premieres of Julian Richards, Reborn, a Carrie for the Z Generation, starring horror icon Barbara Crampton, Jordan Barker's Witches In The Woods, an unrelenting assault of pure terror, Alistair Legrand's highly unusual genre-blending chiller, The Diabolical and Milan Todorovic's sharp-teethed, seductive Killer Mermaids. All these films received FrightFest premiere screenings.

There is also a channel premiere for another FrightFest title, The Windmill Massacre, where Friday The 13th...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel brings suspense and splatter to its July line-up
Posted on Tuesday 16th June 2020

Horror Channel brings plenty of suspense and splatter to July's line-up with the UK TV premiere of The Rezort, where 'The Walking Dead' meets 'Jurassic World'. Starring Dougray Scott and Jessica De Gouw, this fast-paced, gory horror is directed by Outpost franchise helmer Steve Barker.

There are also channel premieres for Damien Mace and Alexis Wajsbrot's cleverly sinister Don't Hang Up, where an invisible predator turns the tables on two online prankers, and Paul W.S Anderson's cult gaming adaptation Resident Evil, with Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez in blistering form.

Plus, there are welcome returns for No One Lives, director Ryuhei Kitamura's taut, tension-laden cat-and-mouse thriller,...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel brings shocks aplenty in June with star-studded Spine-Chiller Season
Posted on Thursday 21st May 2020

There are star-studded shocks aplenty on Horror Channel in June, courtesy of the Spine-Chiller Season - a selection of supernatural mysteries to get your summer off to a very scary start. Scheduled for Saturday nights at 9pm, the season is headed by the Channel premiere of the moody and violent chiller Gothika, starring Halle Berry, Robert Downey Jr. and Penelope Cruz. Other titles include Kevin Bacon's career launcher Stir of Echoes, the gripping US-remake of The Grudge, starring Sarah Michelle Gellar, and the terrifying supernatural thriller Pay the Ghost, starring Nicholas Cage.

There are also UK TV premieres for the sharply eerie Nails, starring Shauna Macdonald and Ross Noble and the deadly Viral, ...

SHARE: READ MORE
They killed his wife. Framed him for murder. Now he hunts them! First Wave coming to Horror
Posted on Monday 27th April 2020

If its action packed, sci-fi infused drama you are after then First Wave is the series for you. With Hollywood legend Francis Ford Coppola on board as one of the Executive Producers the series ran for 66 action-packed episodes which managed to combine high-quality drama with a cool conspiracy theory strand.

The series concentrates on former thief now Security Specialist Cade Foster (Sebastian Spence), as he struggles to uncover an alien conspiracy by deciphering prophecies from Nostradamus as well as being on the run for a murder he did not commit. Along the way he meets The Gua, an alien race of hybridised genetic clones who are focused on enslaving the human race.

Now, the problem with informi...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel marks May with the return of the monstrous Victor Crowley and David Tennant in sadistic mood
Posted on Wednesday 15th April 2020

Apocalyptic nightmares, the return of the monstrous Victor Crowley, David Tennant in sadistic mood and an all-star classic vampire tale... Horror Channel marks May with eight prime-time Channel premieres, including armrest-clutching shocker Bad Samaritan, starring a serial-killing David Tennant, Victor Crowley, Adam Green's horrifying rebooted journey back to the haunted, blood-drenched bayou, Francis Ford Cappola's powerful Bram Stoker's Dracula, starring Gary Oldman as the immortal Count, and Cell, best-selling horror author Stephen King's acclaimed tech-inspired apocalyptic nightmare, starring John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson.

Further premium premieres include Russell Mulcahy's iconic s...

SHARE: READ MORE
Kim Newman looks to the future and reports on Horror's up and coming Classic Sci-Fi Weekend
Posted on Monday 6th April 2020

The 1950s are remembered as the rock 'n' roll years - Bill Haley and Elvis, Little Richard and Chuck Berry - but also as the dawn of the atomic era, the height of the cold war, and the decade when science fiction movies reigned. A fad for futuristic design meant cars sported sharkfins like Flash Gordon's spaceship, and refrigerators were streamlined behemoths like the lumbering robots of pulp magazines. It was an uneasy, nervous decade - caught between optimism and terror, envisioning future homes full of gleaming labour-saving devices but also beasts from outer space or the dawn of time rampaging across the land, leaving radioactive debris in their wake. At the end of the classic The Thing From Another World (1951), ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel has such sights to show you with broadcast of Hellraiser Trilogy
Posted on Wednesday 1st April 2020

Fridays on Horror brings you a box of not so nice delights as we open a puzzle known as the Lament Configuration and deliver Hellraiser, Hellbound: Hellraiser II and Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth.

We begin April 3rd at 10.50pm with Clive Barker's Hellraiser. Frank Cotton (Sean Chapman) has solved the mystery of the Lament Configuration puzzle box, a sort of evil Rubik's cube. Unfortunately he inadvertently opens a doorway to Hell and, in death, enters the world of the Cenobites, a race of sadistic supernatural beings led by a bald Cenobite (Doug Bradley). Brought back from the edge of damnation by the blood of his brother, Larry (Andrew Robinson), Frank rises to feed on the souls of others. But he needs ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Horror Channel celebrates Sci-Fi B-Movies with Classic Sci-Fi Weekend in April
Posted on Tuesday 24th March 2020

Horror Channel also celebrates the Sci-fi B-Movie with a Classic Sci-Fi Weekend, featuring the channel premieres of mutant octopus-rampaging It Came From Beneath The Sea, Fred F. Sears' saucer-invading caper Earth Vs The Flying Saucers, Sears' rampaging alien bird yarn The Giant Claw, Jack Arnold's thought-provoking classic The Incredible Shrinking Man and Nathan Juran's Ray Harryhausen inspired 20 Million Miles To Earth.

Broadcast on Saturday 11 April and Sunday 12 April from 2pm, the season also includes more strange creatures and alien invaders with The Thing From Another World, This Island Earth and Journey To The Far Side Of The Sun.

Full film details in transmission order...

SHARE: READ MORE
UK TV premiere of The Soska Sister's Vendetta leads Horror Channel Vengeance Season in April
Posted on Monday 16th March 2020

April is a wicked month on Horror Channel as cops and villains fight it out in the Vengeance Season, a hard-hitting violent action collection which includes the UK TV premieres of the Soska Sister's all-male maelstrom of mayhem, Vendetta, starring Dean Cain and Paul 'Big Show' Wight, and the fight-to-the death revenge thriller Blood Out, starring Luke Goss, 50 Cent and Vinnie Jones.

Broadcast on Saturday nights at 9pm throughout the month, the season also includes the channel premieres of gritty, bullet-fuelled The Prince, starring Bruce Willis, John Cusack and Jason Patric, and Martin Warren's The Heavy, starring Gary Stretch, Vinnie Jones and Christopher Lee.

Full film details in transmi...

SHARE: READ MORE
Features Archive: 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007
PICK OF THE WEEK
Retreat
RETREAT
Tuesday 29th September
9.00 PM
The Devil's Tomb
THE DEVIL'S TOMB
Friday 2nd October
9.00 PM
Geo-Disaster
GEO-DISASTER
Saturday 3rd October
6.40 PM