ARTICLES

LATEST | FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS

Interview With Anthony DiBlasi Director Of Cassadaga
By James Whittington, Friday 24th July 2015

Anthony DiBlasi SmallAnthony DiBlasi is one of the most exciting directors around. His first feature, Dread was critically acclaimed around the globe and he’s never looked back delivering some of the most effective movies of the last decade.

His superb chiller Cassadaga will get its Network Premiere on August 1st so we decided to chat to this talented fellow about his career so far and what he has planned for the near future.

HC: Did you know from a young age that you wanted to work in the film industry?

AD: Definitely, my father is a huge film lover so I watched all kinds of movies at a really young age. I never had restrictions on what kind of films I could watch, so digging into R rated stuff really young was the norm for me. And I was particularly drawn to special makeup effects and model work. That was my first calling. At like 7 and 8 years old that’s what I wanted to do. Loving films like Star Wars of course but also Fright Night, The Lost Boys, American Werewolf In London, Robocop. All films I poured over growing up.

HC: Is there any one in particular who has influenced your work the most?

AD: One of my favourite films growing up was Once Upon A Time In America. So I’d definitely have to say Sergio Leone. And also Kubrick’s films like Full Metal Jacket and The Shining.

HC: Your first movie, Dread, ended up in the Top 10 of many people's lists for 2009, that must have been satisfying but must have put some pressure on for your next project?

AD: It was fantastically satisfying. Dread was really close to my heart and I’m glad it was received so well. I think what was important to me as a director was to keep directing and improving my craft. And to also not do the same kind of film I had just finished.

HC: Let’s chat about, Cassadaga, how did you get involved with this project?

AD: A producing team from Florida had watched Dread and really enjoyed it and they felt I would be a good match for their project, so they flew over to Los Angeles to take a meeting with me and we hit it off. I’ve done other films with them since.

HC: What interested you about the script?

AD: When Cassadaga came a long it was a great mix of Southern Gothic and Giallo and also it was the first project that I worked on that I had not developed or wrote myself so that was a new challenge for me.

HC: Was it a tough movie to cast?

AD: Casting is always a mixed bag, sometimes it’s quick and painless and sometimes you look for the right person for a long time. Kelen Coleman who stars in the film came in for an audition and I knew she was the right choice for it. But you play the game with the agencies and try to get a “big name” to satisfy the financiers. Eventually I was able to come back to my top choice and our casting director, Andy Henry, did a great job of keeping Kelen’s agents in the loop over the casting process and letting them know I thought she was perfect for the part.

HC: Did you use a lot of practical effects?

AD: Tons, which was amazing, and also important to me as a film maker. Lee Grimes did our special makeup effects and he is such a pro, and does fantastic work. Lee’s worked on The Walking Dead, Zombieland, Pirates Of The Caribbean and tons of other great effects heavy films. We were extremely lucky to get him because we were looking to hire local and to have such a well-respected effects guy living in Florida, where we shot the film, was a God send.

HC: What was the shoot like?

AD: It was extremely hot and long days. Shooting films on tight schedules is always a challenge and we had a lot of locations to cover in only an 18 day period. But the production team worked very well together so we were able to pull it off without too many hiccups.

HC: Is it true there is an actual place called Cassadaga?

AD: It is, and we did shoot there. Cassadaga, Florida is the psychic capital of the world. It was established in 1894 and it’s home to a very large number of Mediums and Psychics who have a spiritualist community there.  It played a great backdrop for the film.

HC: What state do you consider the horror genre to be in at the moment?

AD: I think it’s healthy and that’s a good thing. As long as people are seeing horror films I’m happy. I do think there’s a downside though to the lower budget found footage model that is trending right now. Not to say there’s anything wrong with the films; it just makes it harder to get a horror film made with a larger budget, such as films like The Exorcist, The Shining and What Lies Beneath. Studios can turn a much greater profit on a film made for 50,000 dollars than they can on a film made for 20 to 90 million. And audiences still comes in droves to see it so it sets a precedent for horror that other genres don’t necessarily deal with.

HC: What do you think the next “big thing” will be in horror movies?

AD: I think we’re just going to ride Zombies out till the actual apocalypse hits. People are well prepared for Armageddon now, so why distract that with another trend.

HC: So, what are you working on at the moment?

AD: I have a horror film being released October 6th called Last Shift and also my latest film Most Likely To Die, starring Heather Morris from Glee and the infamous Perez Hilton, is making its world premiere at this year’s Film4 FrightFest in August.

HC: Anthony DiBlasi, thank you very much.


Related show tags: CASSADAGA
MORE ARTICLES
Kim Newman looks to the future and reports on Horror's up and coming Classic Sci-Fi Weekend
Posted in Features, 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 in Features, 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
Interview with actor Nicholas Vince star of Hellraiser and Hellbound: Hellraiser II
Posted in Interviews, 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
Horror Channel celebrates Sci-Fi B-Movies with Classic Sci-Fi Weekend in April
Posted in Features, 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
Groundbreaking gore-fest, Revenge coming to HD
Posted in News, Monday 23rd March 2020

One of the most talked about movies of recent years, Revenge takes the classic exploitation genre by the balls, and now Second Sight Films is giving this groundbreaking gore-fest the Limited Edition Blu-ray box set treatment.

The release features stacks of brand new special features, including a new interview with debut feature writer-director Coralie Fargeat and star Matilda Lutz. Also included are new interviews with the film's cinematographer and the composer, a new commentary and much more. The movie arrives on 11 May 2020 complete with new artwork, designed by Adam Stothard, a poster and a soft cover book with writing by Mary Beth McAndrews and Elena Lazic.

Entitled CEO Richard's romantic...

SHARE: READ MORE
Screamers in HD, coming soon
Posted in News, Thursday 19th March 2020

101 Films presents Screamers (1995), which is title 013 on the 101 Films Black Label; the cult classic and, chilling sci-fi based on the Philip K. Dick short story Second Variety, and is being released on Blu-ray for the first time in the UK on May 4th.

The year is 2078. The man is rebel Alliance Commander Col. Joseph Hendricksson (Weller), assigned to protect the Sirius 6B outpost from ravage and plunder at the hands of the New Economic Bloc. His state-of-the-art weaponry are known as Screamers: man made killing devices programmed to eliminate all enemy life forms. Screamers travel underground, their intent to kill announced by piercing shrieks. They dissect their victims with sushi precision, then er...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Jen and Sylvia Soska, directors of Vendetta
Posted in Interviews, 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
UK TV premiere of The Soska Sister's Vendetta leads Horror Channel Vengeance Season in April
Posted in Features, 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
Discover the film legacy of Edgar Allan Poe
Posted in News, Sunday 15th March 2020

No one has influenced the horror genre more than the writings of Edgar Allan Poe. Poe's works have inspired hundreds of films, and this influence is studied in universities around the globe. This is the first time ever that every Poe influenced film has been analyzed in a single book.

Poe Pictures is an invaluable resource to film studies programs and also a critical guide for every fan of these films.

Included is a detailed analysis and critical review of the importance of each film, perspectives from many who have worked on these classic films, and over 100 black and white photographs from the films. With insights into where Poe ends and cinematic liberties begin, Bruce Hallenbeck has fashio...

SHARE: READ MORE
Time for The Visitation from Silva Screen
Posted in News, Sunday 15th March 2020

The Visitation is the first commercial release of Paddy Kingsland's vintage Doctor Who synth score, to be made available in physical, digital and vinyl formats.

Based on Eric Saward's book, The Visitation is set in England during the height of the 17th Century Great Plague. The story follows The Doctor and his companion fighting Terileptic, a group of fugitive aliens plotting to make the Earth their new home by spreading a deadly plague. Directed by Peter Moffatt, the atmospheric period drama was initially broadcast on BBC 1 from 15th to 23rd February 1982 in four twice-weekly parts, and featured Peter Davison as the fifth Doctor.

Paddy Kingsland's arrival at the BBC radiophonic...

SHARE: READ MORE
For the first time in physical form the score to The Sun Makers.
Posted in News, Sunday 15th March 2020

The Sun Makers is the first commercial release of Dudley Simpson's distinctive Doctor Who score, to be made available in physical, digital and vinyl formats.

Famously, the Christian conservative campaigner Mary Whitehouse misunderstood Doctor Who to be a children's programme and thanks to her relentless fight, the BBC was forced to replace the programme's original production team. The new team was under orders to curb the violence and replace it with a more playful and comedic fantasy tone. The result was The Sun Makers, featuring Tom Baker as the fourth Doctor and Louie Jameson as his assistant Leela. Robert Holmes's story was a clever and amusing spoof of bureaucracy and the tax system, ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Discover a new Eden in April thanks to Tim Lebbon
Posted in News, Sunday 15th March 2020

From the bestselling author of The Silence comes a brand-new, original eco-horror which will delight fans of Jeff VanderMeer and Josh Malerman, set in a near-future world in which self-preservation truly is the first law of nature.

In a time when Earth's rising oceans contain enormous islands of refuse, the Amazon rainforest is all-but destroyed, and countless species edge towards extinction, the Virgin Zones were established in an attempt to combat the change. Off-limits to humanity and given back to nature, these thirteen vast areas of land were intended to become the lungs of the world.

Dylan leads a clandestine team of adventurers into Eden, the oldest of the Zones. Attracted by the challenges ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Articles Archive: 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006
PICK OF THE WEEK
Night Of The Big Heat
NIGHT OF THE BIG HEAT
Sunday 19th April
6.55 PM
Journey To The Far Side Of The Sun
JOURNEY TO THE FAR SIDE OF THE SUN
Sunday 12th April
6.50 PM
Late Phases
LATE PHASES
Sunday 19th April
10.50 PM