Recently we interviewed producer Zach Green from Fatal Pictures. Now it's time to do a little quickie with the wonderful director of Fatal Pictures! It's short but to the point, as it was originally planned as a double-interview with the two.
Who are you and how did you get started in film?
My name is Richard Powell, one half of Fatal Pictures, an independent film company I co-founded with Zach Green. I'd say meeting Zach in film school was the true start of my filmmaking endeavors. Since meeting we have been working towards where we are today, getting ready to make our first feature film.
What made you decide on making these as short films? "Familiar" especially I could see expanded into a feature.
Doing these stories as shorts is really a matter of financial resources and experience in that we didn't have enough of either to get a good feature done. Now we feel ready to helm a feature and to attempt to secure the right budget to make a well crafted film. While "Consumption", "Worm" and "Familiar" all work as shorts they would make equally compelling features and I look forward to making a feature length version of "Worm" in the not too distant future.
With "Familiar" everyone seems to agree - it seems influenced by Cronenberg. Was he an influence and what are some other directors and films that influenced "Worm" and "Familiar"?
"Familiar" was inspired by "Worm", the inspiration being my desire to explore that films themes in a more metaphorical and fantastical way. While I love Cronenberg I can't say he was an influence on "Familiar". Filmmakers I am most inspired by include Todd Solondz, Michael Haneke, Gaspar Noe and Ingmar Bergman. If I take any inspiration from Cronenberg its from his intellectual approach to horror. He is a filmmaker that enjoys making his audience think and feel discomfort and these are some of my goals with my films.
I've really fallen for Robert Nolan from your shorts and other films I've seen him in, and with both "Worm" and "Familiar" it seems as if they were written for him and his personality. Was this the case, and how did Robert get involved in the first place?
Robert was referred to us and we had him audition. Once we saw him reading the lines and giving small one scene performances of the material from "Worm" we knew we had our guy. Robert has a great internal intensity which works amazingly well with my writing and directing style. Much of what I write about concerns hidden selves, dark urges and emotional turmoil so Roberts ability to internalize and express rage with nuance creates what you see on screen in both shorts. "Worm" was written with no one in mind, and while "Familiar" is very much inspired by "Worm" after working with Robert I definitely tailored some of John Dodds personality to suit Robert.
I never got to see your earlier film "Consumption", what can you tell us about that one?
"Consumption" is a short horror film loosely based on a true life story of cannibalism in Germany. It is the first film produced by Fatal Pictures and features some great gore Fx by the Butchershop, the same team that did the fx on "Familiar". It has all the signs of a first film but like all of our films it is dark, disturbing and ambitious. It was a great experience making "Consumption" and the mistakes we made on that film were rectified when we made "Worm".
Will this become a trilogy and what are your future plans?
There's always a chance of another Dodd family member so I won't rule it out! These characters are fun and each one allows for a different film style and genre. As for what's next its the "Worm" feature film. Its written and we are about to take the script out to find financing. Keep a look out for that and for Fatal Pictures, we are looking forward to bringing our films to the world!