2012 TERRY PORTER MEMORIAL AWARD SPOTLIGHT: Exclusive Interview with V/H/S Segment Director TI WEST!
|Terry Porter||Director Ti West|
V/H/S is the winner of SFF 2012's Terry Porter Memorial Award. Terry was a great friend to the festival all year round. From behind the counter at Video Renaissance on Bee Ridge Road (go there, it's like SFF 12 months a year) Terry dispensed a wealth of knowledge on movies in every conceivable genre and for every possible taste. Terry had a great love of fringe cinema and the macabre, so it is with great pride that this year, in Terry's name, and in loving memory, we bring you V/H/S!
For many filmgoers, V/H/S may prove to be the final word in "found footage" horror and suspense. The film follows thieves sent to burglarize a house in the middle of nowhere to find a single prized V/H/S tape. When they find dozens they decide to watch them all until they find the right one. That framing sequence stars Calvin Lee Reeder, winner of last year's SFF Independent Visions Award last year for his gonzo horror film The Oregonian. The framing sequence and all the stories that follow were directed by a collection of horror's greatest directorial voices today, including Ti West, director of House of the Devil and The Innkeepers, who joins us today!
V/H/S screens Friday, April 20 @ 10:00 PM and Saturday, April 21 @ 9:45 PM!
INSIDER: Please tell us how you became involved with V/H/S:
TI WEST: I got a call from the producer, Roxanne Benjamin, asking if I would be interested in being a part of a found footage anthology. Initially I wasn't up for it. The found footage aesthetic isn't my favorite, and I figured that whatever I came up with, that excited me, wouldn't also excite them. But I had an idea I thought would be interesting, and I pitched it to them, they green-lit it almost immediatly, and about a month later I was off to Arizona to start shooting. It was a very no-nonsense experience, and I like that.
INSIDER: Please tell us a little about your V/H/S segment:
TI WEST: My segment, Second Honeymoon, is about a young, married couple on a road trip. It is as if you found their home video from the trip. It starts off as you would expect, touristy and what not, then they have a weird interaction with a drifter, and things start to get weird...
INSIDER: What were some of your favorite moments from the production of your V/H/S segment?
TI WEST: We shot in and around Flagstaff, Arizona. I love it there. It was a blast spending time with Joe Swanberg, Sophia Takal and Kate Sheil. We had some great karaoke evenings when we weren't filming.
INSIDER: Did you adjust your directorial style in any way to fit the perimeters laid out in the framing sequence?
TI WEST: Not my filming style. However, I tried to make my segment really rooted in realism, based on what I had seen of the wraparound. I was the first to shoot a segment, and I tried to have it fit in with the rough footage they showed me. Of course the rest of the segments turned out to be barely rooted in realism at all, and in fact, really pushed the horror envelope. I think that kind of makes mine stick out a bit.. Sort of as the least "horror-y" and more "mystery" of the segments. For better or worse.
INSIDER: Jumping over to your incredible features, the great Tom Noonan played the Horror Host in your first full-length feature The Roost and later returned for House of the Devil. How did you first meet Tom and how would you describe your collaborations with this brilliant actor?
TI WEST: Tom is the best. He lived near Larry Fessenden in NYC and we would see him on the street sometimes and always talk about how cool he was. One day Larry stopped him and gave him the script for The Roost. He said yes, and the rest is history. Like I said before, I like no-nonsense, and that is how we started together. I hope to work with him again soon.
INSIDER: Tell us some of your favorite experiences from the making of The Innkeepers:
TI WEST: I have a great crew. I work with the same people all the time, and I really enjoy our collaboration as well as our friendships. It's nice spending time with people you like.
INSIDER: Have you completed your segment for upcoming horror anythology the ABCs Of Death in which 26 directors contribute segments? Do you feel that V/H/S and ABCs may bring back the tradition of horror anthology films that were once so prevalent (like the Amicus Robert Bloch and R. Chetwynd hayes films, Tales from the Crypt, Creepshow, etc.)
TI WEST: Who knows? I don't love anthology movies, but I love anthology-style episodic TV. Tales from the Crypt is one of my all time favorite shows.
INSIDER: Is there anything you can tell us about The Side Effect, reportedly starring Liv Tyler?
TI WEST: Not too much yet. We hope to shoot in late May. It takes place in the future and is about Liv Tyler doing pharmaceutical testing all alone in outer space and she inexplicably finds herself pregnant.
INSIDER: If there is anything else you'd like to tell our audience?
TI WEST: Check out The Innkeepers on VOD!
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