2013's Finalist Screenplay "Undeath"
What is your name, company name, and URL?
What is your specialty: filmmaking or screenwriting? If filmmaking, which aspects?
Screenwriting. I’ve been fascinated by the horror genre for as long as I can remember. There are so many subgenres and types of horror out there today, but the movies that I was drawn to growing up, classic slashers with truly memorable bad guys like Michael and Jason aren’t really getting made anymore. I’ve been outlining this movie in my head for a couple of years and finally got it written this past spring. I knew if I, as a horror fan, was dying to see a fun, over the top, gorefest slasher, other fans had to feel the same.
What are you currently working on?
Right now, I’m pretty focused on getting UnDeath in front of as many eyes as I can. But I’m working on some exciting new ideas too.
Who do you consider your mentor and why?
My only mentor has been my cousin and best friend Chris, who taught me in his short life to go after my dreams. Do or do. But my influences include (and aren’t limited to) Carpenter, Romero, Rami and Cronenberg. Halloween is almost a part of my daily life, the definitive relentless slasher flick that is still hooking fans today. I also really love Paul Verhoeven’s sci-fi stuff and I’m a die-hard Star Wars fan.
Why do you think the horror/sci-fi genres have such a large following?
They allow us to explore the darker side of things in a safe way and reassure us that we aren’t alone in that curiosity and fascination. Although good vs evil is a basic concept, the stories and images in horror and Sci-Fi are typically things we don’t see in real life so that really engages the imagination on another level.
What do you love most about this business?
For me, it’s the feeling of fulfilment that comes from building a story, having people read it and understand what I’m going for. The response so far has been amazing!
What do you dislike most about this business?
Sleep deprivation. Definitely.
What career accomplishment are you most proud of?
Having my first screenplay make it to the ShriekFest finals, of course!
Any advice you'd like to give to newbies?
As a writer, I’m a newbie myself, but I believe that if you truly love what you’ve written, chances are others will too. So, write what you love as opposed to chasing trends. We horror fans can tell when the creators don’t really feel what they’re trying to sell to us.
Anything else you'd like to say?
Thanks so much to ShriekFest for giving an average horror junkie like me a shot at realizing his dream. I NEVER could have imagined when I started writing UnDeath that I’d wind up representing it in Hollywood as a finalist in a legendary horror film festival with so many talented writers and filmmakers. It still blows my mind and I’m eternally grateful. And hopefully, we can do it again next year! Thank you! I look forward to it! Your words made my day! Thank you Nick! It was great chatting!