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
Chilling modern folk horror coming from T. Kingfisher
Posted in News, Friday 14th February 2020

The Twisted Ones is the celebrated debut from T. Kingfisher. Published last year in the US, The Twisted Ones was shortlisted in the Goodreads Reader's Choice for horror and received rave reviews, now Titan will be bringing it to the UK market for the first time on 17th March.

When Mouse's dad asks her to clean out her dead grandmother's house, she says yes. After all, how bad could it be? Answer: pretty bad. Grandma was a hoarder, and her house is stuffed with useless rubbish. Mouse stumbles across her step-grandfather;s journal, which seems like nonsense until Mouse encounters some of the terrifying things he described. Alone in the woods with her dog, Mouse finds herself face to face...

SHARE: READ MORE
The Breach - brand new fiction from M.T. Hill
Posted in News, Monday 10th February 2020

Award-winning author M.T. Hill returns with a new science fiction novel that blurs the lines between reality and fiction in a gripping exploration of the dangerous underground world of urban exploration. With hints of the claustrophobic terror of Sarah Lotz's The White Road blended with Philip K. Dick-esque imaginings, The Breach is genre-bending, pageturning read that aptly demonstrates why Hill is one of today's most exciting new voices in weird fiction.

Freya Medlock, a reporter at her local paper, is down on her luck and chasing a break. When she's assigned to cover the death of a young climber named Stephen, she might just have the story she needs. Digging into Stephen's life, Frey...

SHARE: READ MORE
A chance to see The Man With the X-Ray Eyes in HD!
Posted in News, Monday 10th February 2020

Get ready for a visual treat as Second Sight announces the first ever UK Blu-ray release of Roger Corman's seminal horror sci-fi classic The Man With the X-Ray Eyes on 20th April.

This 1960s cult favourite will be a sight to behold with a newly restored Limited Edition Box Set release, featuring stacks of brand new special features, including a new interview with director Roger Corman (The Little Shop of Horrors), commentaries and much more, please see details in full below. The set arrives on 20 April 2020 complete with new artwork, designed by Graham Humphreys, a reversible poster and a soft cover book with writing by Jon Towlson and Allan Bryce.

Obsessed with expand...

SHARE: READ MORE
His Dark Materials to get a stunning release on vinyl.
Posted in News, Monday 10th February 2020

Philip Pullman's bestselling trilogy of books has sold more than 19 million copies worldwide and formed the basis of the major HBO/BBC TV series His Dark Materials. Now, this stunning 9LP box set presents BBC Radio's full-cast dramatisations of all three novels thanks to Demon Records.

Follow the adventures of Lyra belacqua and Willy Parry, two children catapulted into a life-or-death struggle to save the future of the cosmos. In Northern lights 11-year-old Lyra discovers dark forces at work, involving kidnapped children and a mysterious substance called 'dust'. In the subtle Knife will finds an opening into a haunted world, where daemon-destroying Spectrobes roam. In the Amber spygla...

SHARE: READ MORE
What you can't see can hurt you! New trailer for The Invisible Man
Posted in News, Monday 10th February 2020

What you can't see can hurt you. Emmy winner Elisabeth Moss stars in The Invisible Man, a terrifying modern tale of obsession inspired by Universal's classic monster character.

Trapped in a violent, controlling relationship with a wealthy and brilliant scientist, Cecilia Kass (Moss) escapes in the dead of night and disappears into hiding, aided by her sister (Harriet Dyer), their childhood friend (Aldis Hodge) and his teenage daughter (Storm Reid).

But when Cecilia's abusive ex (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) commits suicide and leaves her a generous portion of his vast fortune, Cecilia suspects his death was a hoax. As a series of eerie coincidences turns lethal, threaten...

SHARE: READ MORE
Medieval carnage descends in Aliens: Phalanx!
Posted in News, Sunday 9th February 2020

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of Infected and Alive delivers medieval carnage, as a pre-industrial society fights extinction at the hands of a massive infestation of Xenomorphs. Aliens: Phalanx is a wholly self-contained novel that expertly mixes horror and adventure, and adds an exciting new chapter to the canon of the Alien universe.

Penned by fan-favourite author Sigler (whose short story 'Dangerous Prey' in the Aliens: Bug Hunt anthology was incredibly well received), this is the eighth original novel in Titan's successful, ongoing Alien publishing program, and promises to be a must-read for fans of the franchise!

Ataegina was an isolated world of medieval castles, va...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Adam Stovall, director of A Ghost Waits
Posted in Frightfest, Interviews, 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
Award-winning filmmaker Scott Lyus set to direct debut horror feature film Walking Against The Rain early June 2020
Posted in News, Sunday 9th February 2020

The apocalyptic Biblical monster movie, shot on locations in the UK over a three-week period, will star Cruel Summer's Reece Douglas, newcomer Maisy Kay and James Swanton as monster creation 'The Forsaken'.

Set six months after a biblical plague has fallen upon the world, Walking Against The Rain tells the story of two strangers, Tommy (Reece Douglas) and Blair (Maisy Kay) who are navigating their way across a barren landscape in a desperate attempt to find each other. With their only form of communication being two soon-to-die battery operated radio mics and with a new evil in the shape of 'The Forsaken' tracking them down, they must learn to confront loss and rediscover a trust in humanity. Or...

SHARE: READ MORE
Interview with Simeon Halligan, director of Habit
Posted in Features, Interviews, 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
The last ever BBC radio series of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy makes its vinyl debut!
Posted in News, Saturday 8th February 2020

First broadcast in 2018, the Hexagonal Phase is based on Eoin Colfer's And Another Thing..., the first - and, to date, only - official sequel to Douglas Adams's original book series. This is also the first ever publication of the original radio edits of the Hexagonal Phase, as heard on their original Radio 4 broadcast.

Presented on 3 x 180g heavyweight neon green vinyl, and presented in illustrated wallets inside a rigid, bound 20 page book, including a perspective sleeve note by Geoff McGivern and a concluding overview of the series' development by Jem Roberts, Adams's official biographer.

A Amazon UK Exclusive Edition contains a print signed by Geoff McGivern and is limite...

SHARE: READ MORE
Spiral - A terrifying new chapter from the book of SAW...
Posted in News, Wednesday 5th February 2020

A sadistic mastermind unleashes a twisted form of justice in Spiral, the terrifying new chapter from the book of SAW.

Working in the shadow of an esteemed police veteran (Samuel L. Jackson), brash Detective Ezekiel "Zeke" Banks (Chris Rock) and his rookie partner (Max Minghella) take charge of a grisly investigation into murders that are eerily reminiscent of the city's gruesome past. Unwittingly entrapped in a deepening mystery, Zeke finds himself at the center of the killer's morbid game.

Spiral stars Chris Rock, Max Minghella, Marisol Nichols, and Samuel L. Jackson, and is produced by the original SAW team of Mark Burg and Oren Koules. The film is directed by ...

SHARE: READ MORE
Knives and Skin - Original Soundtrack
Posted in Reviews, Thursday 30th January 2020
Knives and Skin - Original Soundtrack
Nick Zinner
Lakeshore Records

Knives and Skin from director Jennifer Reeder was one of the strongest and most original movies from FrightFest 2019. Its hypnotic and sometimes surreal plot contained some superb set-pieces of nerve tightening drama. To make the film even more memorable it had a score which added a delicate beauty to the whole experience.

Part suburban nightmare, part neon-soaked teenage fever dream, this tantalizing mystery traces the wave of fear and distrust that spreads across a small Midwestern town in the wake of a high school girl's mysterious disappearance. As the loneliness and darkness lurking beneath the ve...

SHARE: READ MORE
Articles Archive: 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006
PICK OF THE WEEK
The Jurassic Games
THE JURASSIC GAMES
Friday 21st February
9.00 PM
Prom Night
PROM NIGHT
Monday 24th February
10.55 PM
The Row
THE ROW
Friday 28th February
10.50 PM