Reviews Are Coming In For Lepus


It would seem that even when people don’t like the full movie of Death By VHS (formerly known as Scream Machine) they still like Lepus. Here are some links to the reviews – 

http://guestars.wordpress.com/2013/03/20/death-by-vhs-from-scarlet-fry-and-some-other-edgy-film-fiends/

http://www.ilikehorrormovies.com/2013/02/death-by-vhs-2013_25.html

http://asouthernlifeinscandaloustimes.blogspot.com/2013/03/my-review-of-death-by-vhs-anthology.html

Those are few of the ones I found so far. I can’t wait to show it in front of a crowd and see how it plays. We’ll keep you posted.

 

Yet Another Production Update


I know I post a lot on here about this stuff. But it’s my blog. I can do what I want. If you don’t like it then start your own blog and make fun of me for all I care. I have a thick skin. I can take it. Just try to be clever. I don’t want a bunch of gay jokes and “your mama” jokes. They’re tired and make feel like I’m still in high school. And, for the record, I hated those kind of jokes even then. In fact, I actually kinda hated high school. Not to get too off topic here but I thought people would be different as adults. Instead I just see the same kind of stupid people with more grey hair.

Anyway, back to what I actually set out to write. Today something hit the net that was a bit of a surprise to me. There is a trailer for Scream Machine, the DVD anthology that Lepus is a part of. It showed up today on YouTube. I linked it to our official Facebook page.

As far as the rest of what I wanted to mention I was giving something some thought. Lepus was a fifteen minute short that is the first of a proposed trilogy. But what if it was just one long movie instead? Could it be stretched? I think so. Add in a few more characters and have A and B stories running simultaneously and the movie could be stretched to 80 minutes. Lepus cost us roughly $1000 and we could still keep the feature at around $100,000 or there about. I’m trying to decide if it should be lengthened or sequelized.

If I was to stretch the feature I could add in the characters we came up with for the sequels, bring in the ideas we started developing for the mythology of the characters, and make it a weird and funny movie. It seems like the type of film that would fit perfectly into the Troma family. It’s worth trying. I think I will try. The money could be raised through Kickstarter or IndieGoGo easily enough, especially since we have a short film to try and sell it already. The actors would all come back for the feature. That much I’m sure of. I’m gonna give writing the script a try. I have nothing to lose by doing so.

Wish me luck.

Lepus And Terrestrial Updates


ImageI know, I know. I spend a lot of time on here talking about Lepus. Cut me some slack. This is the first time I have officially directed something. It’s like when someone has a baby. Even if the baby is a hideous chud they still want to share pictures on Facebook all the time. Now, I’m not calling Lepus hideous. I’m simply stating that, for all intents and purposes, this is my baby and I want to share it with the world. Is that so wrong? I’m proud of what I created. 

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Last night Brian and I met with David Sabal for a few mintues before he was a guest on The Gorram Nerd Hour. During that time he filled us in on what was happening with distribution. It’s been decided that we are going to be distributed by Worldwide MultiMedia. The other five distributors that were looking to pick us up wanted to wait too long to release the DVD. Worldwide can have it out by June (more details on the exact release date as they come in). They will also have copies available before hand for us to autograph and sell at Phoenix Comicon in May. If you’re gonna be there then come get your copy. You won’t be disappointed…well, I can vouch for Lepus at least, not the other shorts in the Scream Machine DVD. Maybe I should “You hopefully won’t be disappointed as I haven’t seen the other shorts”. Anyway, we will also be selling copies through our Facebook page.

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Last night we did a little foley work on the project and then talked about our next short film, Terrestrial, that we will hopefully be shooting next month. We just have to wait and see when our lead actor is available. He is going to be busy shooting a movie through part of February. Our second largest role, the character of Travis, has a similar issue with the actor. We wanted to shoot a certain week in February and he will be out of town. These are the people we absolutely want for the short and we will wait if that is what it takes. We loved these actors and really want to see what they do with the roles. You can hear the official casting announcements on The Gorram Nerd Hour later tonight when it goes up. Otherwise you can wait a week for us to post it on our Facebook page and Twitter.

Voices From The Grave – A New Anthology Movie Coming Soon


I know I have spent a lot of time talking on here about Lepus. In the past I have mentioned that Walter Reuther, the man behind Scream Machine, gave us our first break by including Lepus as part of his anthology DVD. He asked me today if I would be would mention another project he’s been a part of. Written and directed by Laurence Holloway and Richard Stoudt Voices From The Grave is another anthology with three stories. Gary Brandner, author of the novel The Howling, inspired these men to turn his short story entitled Invitation into one of the three pieces in the anthology. The name Gary Brandner is not as well known as it should be. The man deserves to be better known. Maybe this film will remind people of his work and you will go seek out his books. 

Here’s the official press release for Voices From The Grave – 

From master horror writer Gary Brandner, author of ‘The Howling’, and filmmakers Richard Stoudt and Laurence Holloway comes a relentlessly harrowing film experience. A trio of horrors that will make your flesh creep and your heart palpitate. 

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Deadly spirits, vengeful and maliciously spiteful give fuel to these tales of supernatural terrors. 
‘Invitation’, based on a short story by Gary Brandner, tells the tale of loser Len Krager, who attends a party he’ll never forget! A vengeful spirit exacts revenge in the tale ‘All Hallows’ Eve’! An exercise in suspense and atmosphere. Robert Mundy doesn’t celebrate Halloween since the accidental death of his brother on Halloween night. But this Halloween night, vengeance will rise and seek retribution. Ghostly road hazards endanger a used car owner in the turbo-charged yarn ‘Repossessed’, a spine tingling ‘vehicle’ for absolute fright. Jeff purchases a killer car for a killer deal….unfortunately, the car really is a killer!

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A true exercise in style and terror, ‘Voices from The Grave’ will thrill and chill even the most jaded horror fan!

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And don’t forget that the official Voices From The Grave teaser trailer is finally here. A new full legnth horror anthology featuring Gary Brandner’s (Howling author) Short story “Invitation”!

Trailer:
 
Also check us on IMDB.
Check us out on Facebook.
 
Well folks, there it is. I have to say that I am curious about this one. I grew up a huge Joe Dante fan. From the original Piranha and The Howling to even his current work on Masters Of Horror. As a boy I looked for the book The Howling was based on because I needed to read it after seeing the movie. For many years I had it wedged in between my Stephen King and Clive Barker collections. That’s how highly I thought of Gary Brandner.  
 

Thoughts Of Past And Future


Here we are, just a few short months after I started this blog, and we have one short film nearly ready to show, another starting next month and The Gorram Nerd Hour has recorded nearly 20 episodes. All of that in just a few short months. When I started this blog I was talking about the features Brian Smith and I have been writing. We got detoured…but for good reason. We needed something to showcase our talent. We were a little arrogant to think that two writers with no credits to their names could get someone to give them money to produce and direct a movie of their own. Now we’ll have two things to show.

Since I was a boy I have loved movies. I would sit and watch an action movie like any little would. I loved Commando, Lethal Weapon and Die Hard. I also had an affection for every other type of film. I didn’t care. If someone made I wanted to see it. Science Fiction, Horror, Romantic Comedy, Sappy Melodrama, Musicals. I just loved movies. What I took away from all of that was that it was what I wanted to do. I wanted to make movies of my own. At first I thought I wanted to be an actor until I took a drama class in High School and my teacher had me direct something for the first time. That’s when my passion made itself crystal clear. I loved the behind the scenes aspect of things. 

I always enjoyed writing. It has been a passion of mine for as long as I remember. What I wrote was always weird. I would go off and write a sequel to Romeo & Juliet in iambic pentameter or a western about aliens hiding among the townsfolk and planning on destroying the town with radioactive lima beans. So when Brian and I sat down to write Lepus I suggested we write the whole thing in Klingon save for the killer’s one line which would be in German. 

Sometimes I need to be reigned in.

We decided not to go with Klingon. But we kept Brian’s line in German. There is not one good reason for it other than it made us laugh. Lepus is a comedy, after all. We started off goofy with our next short film and decided to go darker once we started writing. Terrestrial will be a different side of our writing. It’s tone is more serious while still being quirky. 

As I write this we are only a couple days away from the open casting call for Terrestrial. I couldn’t be more excited about who we have coming in to read. a couple of our Lepus cast members are coming in for it – Jai Yunae and Randy Robinson. I loved working with them on Lepus. I can’t wait to see what they bring to this audition. We also have some other really talented people we didn’t cast for Lepus coming in for another go. Wilman Vergara II was someone I was really impressed with and just couldn’t find a good place to put him last time. This time he’s coming in to read for the lead in Terrestrial and I think he’s got a great shot at it. Adam Boggs is another up and comer I really liked and he’s coming in to read for us again. I was impressed with both of them so much. I’m glad they want to come in and try for this one. 

We’re still not at a point where we’ve been able to pay anyone for their work. It’s all just copy and credit basically. I’m amazed by the talent that has been willing to work with us for nothing. Hopefully by the time we get started on the next two parts of Lepus we have a budget…something to pay these amazing people for their time. 

Back to Lepus for a moment – The rough cut I saw a while back is good. I was really happy with how it turned out. It was a very rough cut with no score, no effects, no foley. But it was great, great enough for Walter Reuther (aka Scarlet Fry) to tell me it was his favorite in the anthology horror DVD we will be included on. And he directed all the other shorts. 

David Sabal, our wonderful renaissance man (DP, producer, editor) just got the score back from the composer. I asked for something similar to a score from the 80’s scifi and horror movies I loved so much. I wanted something like an old John Carpenter score. From what I hear the composer delivered. Hopefully I will hear it in the next few days. 

Now on to The Gorram Nerd Hour. We have been having a lot of fun recording our show every week. Brian and I love working on it. We are talking about re-tooling the show a little. The first twenty or so weeks have been about finding out what works and what doesn’t. We’re gonna be trying a few new things in upcoming episodes that could prove to be a lot of fun. We are also going to be spending the weekend of February 8-10th at the Bloody Hero International Film Festival at the Phoenix Convention Center. We will be recording our podcast, conducting interviews and serving on the jury. This is a big deal for us. I know I’m really excited about it. We may have another fun surprise for our listeners that weekend too. This will be a part of the re-tool of the show. Let us know what you think.

One last thing before I wrap this up. We had a friend from our Abnormal Entertainment family in town last weekend. Camm Harston, co-host of Raise Your Spirits with Camm and Kevin. While he was here Brian and I both guested on their show. We had a lot of fun and everyone should go listen.

Here;s hoping 2013 proves even better for Robot Vampire Productions than 2012. We’re already off to a great start.

 

Low Budget Doesn’t Have To Mean “Crap”


First off, I have been a bad blogger. I haven’t posted on here in a while. For that I am truly sorry. I could blame the holidays or just life getting in the way…whatever it is I promise to get better about posting in the near future.

Now, on to the subject at hand. Seeing that I review movies on a regular basis, both on here (well, not lately) and on The Gorram Nerd Hour, I see a lot of crap. But does low budget/straight to video/shot on video mean we have to settle for crap? No. Brian and I spend a lot of time on what we write. It’s the only way to be sure our stuff is actually good enough to shoot. Sure, we want to include blood and gore. That’s gonna sell your straight to DVD movie faster than anything else…well, except for boobs. The trick is to do it in a way that works. 

Recently we had to watch some movies for The Gorram Nerd Hour that were amateur efforts. I’m not going to say they were bad. I didn’t think so anyway. What I will say is that had they taken just a little more time on the script the movies would have turned out a lot better. 

Recently we finished our first short film, Lepus, and we have heard nothing but good things from everyone involved in the post-production process. It’s going to be included on a DVD of shorts directed by Walter Reuther aka Scarlet Fry. He told me that he thinks Lepus is the best short on the DVD. Why? Because we didn’t just rest on idea of blood and guts. We wrote a fifteen page script with a three act structure, interesting characters, cool gags, odd humor and lots of blood and guts. I also wanted to make the short look good. We took our time to get the camera angles needed to make it look more dynamic. We tried to find actors we knew would fit the parts. Even the actors who were friends and family were only chosen if we knew they could do it. We had a lot of really talented people we didn’t cast after the open casting session, people I want to work with in the future. They just weren’t right for the roles. That’s why we got great performances. We chose right. 

Enough about my project. Back to my point. If you choose well, write well, shoot coverage, and don’t rest the camera in one spot a la Kevin Smith you can make a movie that looks good…even on video. And for the love of God don’t include the tickle monster as your killer! 

Lepus Is Part Of Scream Machine!


Alrighty folks, from the start it has been talked about that we would be a part of something once Lepus was finished shooting. Well, as it turns out that something is a feature called Scream Machine. The other shorts were all done by former horror host Scarlet Fry. He and our DP David Sabal had worked together on all the other shorts. They were looking to add another one to the line-up before they put this baby to bed. Because Brian Smith and I are friends with David and happened to show him a script right around the same time he jumped at it and off we went. 

I don’t know how we got so lucky to be able to get distribution on our first short film but it happened. We also got incredibly lucky with our cast. It’s been amazing how things went for us. Just a few months ago Brian and I were feeling dejected because nobody even wanted to read our feature script, “Welcome To Deadsville”. Now, Tyler Gallant wants to star as the lead in it. He wants to make the proposed sequels to “Lepus” and he wants Brian and me to collaborate on a feature he and Kat Garcia came up with. And, about a month ago, I was talking to Bill Oberst Jr. about “Welcome To Deadsville” and he wants us to keep him in mind when we are ready to shoot. I would love for him to play the Phil character. Things are looking good. 

We still have a couple pick up shots to do. The biggest thing is just making sure my sister’s death scene is sufficiently gory. Unfortunately we have to wait about a week or so for David to get back from Boston to shoot it. There are a bunch of photos from the last night of shooting up at our Facebook page. There are a lot of great shots of Victoria Paege dressed like a sexy nurse before, during and after she gets all bloodied up and bruised. Also, you can check out the iMDb page. It’s still not complete yet. There are a few fixes to be made. First, I am listed as an actor in it but when you click on my name it goes to some kid in Texas. Not me. Second, Brian’s credit somehow got attached to a different Brian E. Smith. Third, my director credit isn’t up yet. Otherwise everything else is there. Go check it out, “like” it, and come to Phoenix Comicon for the premiere!