Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Terminal of terror

Since the news about our Edinburgh screening came out, both myself and Lisa have had our heads down trying to promote the film as much as possible, with our limited resources. We've been working on getting a couple of poster images sorted out (we're going to need them for the festival) as well as getting a logo designed for the title. I'm no designer, so it's been a bit of a trial and error process, although we did get some time with Franki of designers Franki and Jonny to help us with the design and with figuring out a (cheap but effective) strategy.

Almost as soon as the Edinburgh announcement came out, I found a post about the film on a US website called Quiet Earth. It was great to see them pick up on it - the first mention the film has had outside of the UK - and I ended up sending them the trailer and some stills. It was really exciting to see the film start to take on a life of its own, outside of what we were doing.

We also got a mention in The Times, in a sidebar to an article about the festival. It was a real surprise to get mentioned here, especially as no-one's really seen the film yet (although The Times did send someone along to interview us on set). I think the airport setting helps - Heathrow has been so much in the news this year, and the idea of 'horror' and 'Heathrow' going together is a good in-point for journalists. Along with the other biggest news story this year, the story of the Austrian cellar (which got mentioned to me about six times last week in relation to 'Mum & Dad'...), it looks like we've got the most zeitgeist-y (sorry, that should probably be 'zeitgeistig'. My German tutors would be despairing...) film of the year.

The Josef Fritzl case is an interesting one - it's almost unbelievable in the extent of the abuse that took place, but also in the ability of Fritzl to sustain a normal existence alongside it. It's a real case of someone with a truly distorted version of family and parenthood, someone who has created their own world and sees little wrong in it (the classic 'I'm not a monster' claim...). It's a real reminder that real life can be even more twisted and perverse than anything horror filmmakers could think up (although I would conceivably exclude Frank Henenlotter from that claim...)

At the same time as sorting out the promo stuff for M&D, we've been moving forward on 'Empire of Flesh'. We had a meeting last week with Celine, our script editor, which was great. She had a lot of good things to say about the script, but also some big notes about structure, timeline and characters, which I need to address in the next version. It was good (if quite intense) to spend time talking about the script and trying to pin things down which I'd been vague about. Both Lisa and Sol were there, and Celine said it was great that they were both 'not scared' of saying things about the script - which then occasioned twenty minutes of me trying to defend something that I'd written but which nobody found clear. 'Scared', sheesh...

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