Interview with actor Nicholas Vince star of Hellraiser and Hellbound: Hellraiser II
By James Whittington, 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 was your first impression of him?

NV: Charming, intelligent and funny. And a very talented artist.

HC: Did you have to audition for the character of "Chatterer"?

NV: Not as such. Clive invited me to play the part, but I had to get new head shots done as my usual ones were very 'boy next door', and he didn't think the producers would cast me. So I got a new set and had to beg the photographer not to airbrush out the cold sore I had during the shoot, as it made me look as if I'd been in a fight and had a bruised lip.

HC: This was your first feature so were you nervous on your first day on set?

NV: Very nervous. And excited. Apart from working with Clive as as director for the first time, I'd already got to know the team from Image Animation, who created the makeups for the Cenobites, and Jane Wildgoose who designed the costumes and was really looking forward to working with them. Then there was the whole magic of being on a film set.

HC: The make-up looks quite complicated; how long did it take to apply?

NV: My smart Alec answer to that question is, "Approximately 3 months." There was a long process before we began filming, after life casts of my head and body, the Chatterer mask was sculpted, and the costume made. There was also a makeup test after which the teeth were changed from being pointed to being human. On filming days, it was about an hour to get into makeup and costume.

HC: How uncomfortable was it to wear and did you help in the design?

NV: It was very restrictive. I couldn't hear, speak or see very well in the mask and the leather costume had been sculpted to fit me very closely. I did contribute to the design, but unknowingly. A story I'd told Clive Barker months before inspired the look of the Chatterer.

HC: How do you prepare to play such a fantastical creature?

NV: When I realised how restrictive the mask and costume were going to be, I recalled a mime class at drama school. The teacher told us to bring in a cardboard box which would fit on our heads. We weren't allowed to decorate or cut it. In the class we had to make that cardboard box have a life and character, simply using movement. We were dressed in skin fitting black leotards and tights. So, that training was very useful. And I practised chattering my teeth at home, as they didn't use mechanics on the Chatterer. The teeth you see were attached to mine and I was moving them.

HC: When you were making the first Hellraiser were you aware that you were part of something really special?

NV: Kinda. Clive's Books of Blood were obviously hugely successful, and Stephen King had given a quote naming him "... the future of horror." I'd read those stories, the Hellraiser script and Clive's plays and as I mentioned earlier was blown away by his writing. I'd also seen the makeups and costumes for the Cenobites and there was nothing like them in films before. It was totally unlike the Hammer horror and stalk and slash films. (Not that I don't love those films.) So, I knew this was going to be something very different and extraordinary. Did I think I'd have the fun of talking with fans of the films, including the many who weren't born when we made the films, more than three decades later? Nope.

HC: Would you return if asked?

NV: I'd love to work on the Hellraiser franchise again, particularly if Clive is involved.

HC: What is it like to see yourself/character used in merchandising?

NV: Absolutely delightful. In the 1990's I remember receiving the glow in the dark 16" figure by Screamin. And at one time I had the NECA 18" animatronic Chatterer, whose teeth chattered. I'm amazed at the accurate detail they managed to put into those and the smaller figures. I also love that he became a Funko Pop at the end of last year. I think it's a real testament to the work of Clive, Nigel Booth who sculpted and applied the Chatterer makeup and the costume designer, Jane Wildgoose.

HC: Why, after all this time do you think these movies still stand out?

NV: I think there's nothing like the first three Hellraiser films. They're not just about the Cenobites, we're on for a remarkably short time. The first film is really about Julia and the extraordinary lengths she goes to get her dead lover back. The second about Dr. Channard's (Kenneth Cranham) desire to learn the secrets of the puzzle box. Also, there have been spin off comics and short stories so it's been an inspiration to many other creators, particularly some modern horror film makers.

HC: So, what are you up to at the moment?

NV: I'm currently working on my third volume of short stories titled Prayers Of Desire and putting together more performances of my autobiographical show I Am Monsters! - in which I reveal secrets from behind the scenes of Hellraiser, Hellbound and Nightbreed. I'm also lucky enough to have acted in some fascinating feature films recently, such as Ashley Thorpe's Borley Rectory and Stewart Wright's Book of Monsters.

HC: Nicholas Vince, thank you very much.

Interview with Andy Nyman about his role in the classic TV version of The Woman in Black
Posted on Sunday 9th August 2020
The Woman in Black Network packshot

Andy Nyman is one of the most popular and hardworking actors working today. From thrillers to chillers, from comedy to drama, Andy can turn his hand to any genre. Thanks to Network Releasing we are able to appreciate his first ever TV appearance as they release a remastered version of the acclaimed television adaptation of The Woman in Black. We chatted to Andy about his role in this legendary piece.

HC: Let's chat about this TV version of The Woman in Black, was it one of your first ever roles very first TV role?

AN: That was my very first TV role, I was 23, the same age my son is now. It is a shock, isn't it? I was like, when I saw it ...

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...

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...

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

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...

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...

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...

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...

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...

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