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Set Visit: Dread Central Goes Behind Your Eyes

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It’s January 15, 2010, when this scribe arrives to the snowy set of executive producer Greg H. Sims’ psycho-thriller Behind Your Eyes. Shooting for 14 days on location in Lake Arrowhead, CA (with additional days in and around the nearby environs of Los Angeles) and written by Daniel Fanaberia, the flick revolves around ‘A couple. A kidnapping. A secret. A weekend to meet the parents becomes a weekend of trying to stay alive for perfect Steven and Erika’ (according to the production’s PR).

The film stars Tom (Puppetmaster: Axis of Evil) Sandoval and Swedish actress Frida Farrell as the unlucky duo. Writer Fanaberia and actors Remy O’Neil, Lisa R. Segal, and Arthur Roberts round out the film’s cast.

The first in-house feature for new production and distribution entity Vesuvio Entertainment Corporation, of which Sims is CEO, Behind Your Eyes is being helmed by Clint Lien (he previously worked as a producer with Sims on their 1999 feature The Fear) in his directorial debut. You wouldn’t know it, though, as when this scribe arrives to the dusty, cramped basement in which the film is shooting, Lien comes across as a seasoned and patient pro, guiding his cast and crew with a steady hand through the scripted tortures of the day.

Filming in an old restaurant turned storage facility for the Timberline Antique Dealership, the production is utilizing the location for the basement set of the parent’s home, where much of the action goes down, and the flick’s official synopsis is as follows: ‘Young couple Erika and Steven have the world going for them as they embark on a weekend retreat to meet Steven’s parents. Things take a turn for the worst when the couple is unexpectedly kidnapped and held hostage. Now, it’s a fight for their lives against their mysterious abductor and the secrets he possesses. As he tortures and teases them, secrets from the past emerge and change everything. When Erika escapes, things only get worse, and the twists and turns take the viewer into uncharted territory and unyielding mayhem.

Of the scripted mayhem, “That’s the ‘sodomy horse,’” Lien tells us between takes of one of the set’s props – a rather sadistic looking sawhorse variant whose purpose is rather clear given its construction and moniker, as well as the bound and gagged Farrell who pleads in the foreground with her off-screen captors. We soak in a few takes, and with the scene complete and Farrell’s cries still echoing in the basement (we’re embargoed at present from revealing exactly what was shot), this scribe steals Lien away from his chair for a chat.

It’s definitely a psychological thriller,” says the director, who previously co-producer the 2002 feature Megalodon, of Behind Your Eyes, “but as you can see from the set that you walked onto, it’s pretty grim.

Dread questions him regarding the cinematic depravity audiences should expect from the film, given the Hostel-esque tools of torture that adorn the walls of the set, and Lien responds: “I definitely wanted to take a step back from ‘torture porn’ because it’s becoming ridiculous. This is one of the problems I had with (Bryan Bertino’s 2008 film) The Strangers – we’ve got to the point where our protagonists don’t have a face, a name, or any words – they just come in and rip the shit out of everything. Even Jason and Michael and Freddy, all ridiculous characters from the 1980’s, had some motivation, and we all loved them because they had character. When I watch a horror movie, I want my bad guy to be lovable in a way because we love to hate them.

As for the film’s exploitative versus thematic elements, Lien offers, “We’ve got the beautiful girl (Farrell), but I think everything that I’ve done in there suits the push of the story, and the actors agree with me. I’ve asked them to do some really risky things and they’ve pushed it. The dramatic element is a triangle between the three characters: the boyfriend (Sandoval), the girlfriend (Farrell), and then this other guy (writer and actor Fanaberia), who we don’t really know who he is. We have a triangle of incredibly twisted dimensions. It’s about deception and coming to terms with who we really are, and that’s the case with all three of these characters.

With the production shooting on the Red camera system, we’re curious as to what ‘look’ Lien and production designer Caity Birmingham are striving for, and the director quips, “The look was one that was ‘finished’, if that helps. (Director of photography) Akis (Akis Konstantakopolous) and I sat down and watched Seven, and without a doubt it’s one of the most beautifully shot films I’ve ever seen, and he agreed. Then I watched The Strangers – which while I am a horror fan I thought was a bit misogynistic – but the director shot that film beautifully: a lot of hand-held, a lot of oranges and warm tones and that cabin, earthy-feel that gives you that feeling of isolation that you don’t get in the city. So we are moving away from the city look (of Seven), and going for an isolated, claustrophobic feel. We are doing a lot of hand-held.

Commenting on the limited space inherent to the basement in which they are shooting, “We’ve got this thing called a slider,” says Lien, “which gives me about three and a half feet to move-in and move-out and keeps the camera moving. I’m not a ‘sticks’ guy: I do not want them on my set, and Akis is a big Greek kid who can hold that camera all day.

Executive produced by Sims with co-producer Hawk Furman and producers Chris and Michael Ottinger, Behind Your Eyes had a breathtaking three-month turnaround from script to principal photography, with Lien having no more than six weeks to prep before the first day of shooting.

This is the fastest turnaround I have ever been involved in,” says Lien. “Greg asked me to read it and maybe punch it up a little bit, so I did a brush (on the script), and then next thing I knew we were in L.A. casting and now we are here.

It’s really incredible what Greg’s pulled together here on a shoe-string budget,” Lien continues, “which is the way the industry is going now. They just aren’t making those half-million dollar movies anymore. Five years ago you couldn’t do a film like this for this budget; it was just impossible. But now with the advent of the digital world, you are able to. The Red looks incredible. It looks so 35mm. And we’ve got some good talent in there and some great crew, and I’m just stunned at what they are putting together and what they are giving me to work with.

Check out three exclusive production stills and pictures from the set of Behind Your Eyes below, and stay tuned for our chat with executive producer Sims.

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Set Visit: Dread Central goes Behind Your Eyes

Sean Decker

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Exclusive: Rocky Gray Talks Halloween Horror Anthology 10/31

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The last time we gave you guys word on the upcoming Halloween horror anthology 10/31 was to bring you the knock-out exclusive official poster, which you can peep to your left (click for a higher-res version).

The new horror anthology in the vein of V/H/S and Creepshow joins an ensemble cast together to spin twisted tales of the macabre. The film is executive produced by P.J. Starks, creator of the critically acclaimed Volumes of Blood.

The film’s stories are directed by the likes of Justin M. Seaman (The Barn), Zane Hershberger (Devilution), John William Holt (The Dooms Chapel Horror), Brett DeJager (Bonejangles) and Rocky Gray making his directing debut.

This past weekend we were able to catch up with producer-director Rocky Gray and ask him a few choice questions about the anticipated upcoming anthology film.

You can check out our quick interview below and then make sure to hit us up and let us know how excited you are to check out 10/31 in the comments below!

Dread Central: How is the film coming along?

Rocky Gray: The film is now completed and we are getting the perks out to our Indiegogo backers. The backers and Death By Festival got to see the first cut of the film in October and they loved it so we’re very excited to get the film out to everyone else very soon.

DC: What can expect from this anthology?

RG: Expect to have a lot of Halloween themed fun. Each segment has its own flavor so the pacing and the look change throughout the film. With masked killers, vampires, scarecrows, tricksters and old hags there’s something for everyone.

DC: Will there be a sequel?

RG: If there was a demand for it we would make it happen!

Sounds good to us. Thanks for chatting with us, Rocky!

You can become a fan of the film on Facebook HERE.

SYNOPSIS:
A Halloween treat bag of all the things that go bump in the night. From masked killers to scarecrows, witches, and tricksters. There’s a scare for everyone in this anthology of horror and the macabre from the creators of The Barn and Volumes of Blood.

Red Letter Entertainment, Inc. brings you the directorial debut from Rocky Gray (composer of The Barn, Killing Floor 2), two-time Grammy-winning musician and former drummer for Evanescence. A new horror anthology in the vein of V/H/S/ and Creepshow brings an ensemble cast together to spin twisted tales of the macabre. The film is Executive Produced by P.J. Starks, creator of the critically acclaimed Volumes of Blood.

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The Duffer Brothers Have Begun Working on Stranger Things 3

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I wasn’t the world’s biggest fan of the first season of Netflix and The Duffer Brothers’ “Stranger Things” to tell you the truth. That said, I absolutely loved the second season (read our reviews HERE).

It is with this in mind that we are all looking forward to “Stranger Things 3”.

Recently Deadline reported that at Vulture Festival LA the Duffer Brothers, producer Shawn Levy, Finn Wolfhard, Paul Reiser, and Linnea Berthelsen talked about season two and teased season three.

“We are [in] very early days on season three, and we’re still figuring it out,” Ross Duffer said, before taking a beat, then adding: “I probably wasn’t supposed to say that. That’s not official; that wasn’t an official announcement — we’re just working on it, just for our own amusement… for fun!”

Whatever.

We all know at this point that there is going to be a “Stranger Things 3” and that The Duffer Brothers will one day begin working on it. Don’t worry so much, Ross Duffer.

After all, your brother already let us know that season three will begin after a time jump:

“Even if we wanted to hop into the action faster, we couldn’t,” says Matt Duffer. “Our kids are aging. We can only write and produce the show so fast. They’re going to be almost a year older by the time we start shooting season three. It provides certain challenges. You can’t start right after season two ended. It forces you to do a time jump. It’s a long way of saying that yeah, we’re going to do a time jump.”

What did you think of “Stranger Things 2”? Did you dig it more (or less) than season one? Make sure to hit us up and let us know in the comments below or on social media!

“Stranger Things 2” is currently streaming on Netflix.

Synopsis:
It’s 1984, and the citizens of Hawkins, Indiana, are still reeling from the horrors of the Demogorgon and the secrets of Hawkins Lab. Will Byers has been rescued from the Upside Down, but a bigger, sinister entity still threatens those who survived.

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James Cameron’s Terminator Reboot/Sequel Hires Screenwriter

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The last word we brought you guys on producer James Cameron and Deadpool-director Tim Miller’s new Terminator film was when we let you know that Paramount had set the film’s release date for July 26, 2019.

Today we have news via The Wrap that the studio is bringing in screenwriter Billy Ray (Captain Phillips) to pen the movie’s script based on a story crafted by Cameron.

You may remember that Cameron and Miller created a writers room a while back to plan out an all-new trilogy of films, but while that writer’s room included David Goyer, Charles Eglee, and Josh Friedman, it seems like Ray will be the first film’s sole writer. For now.

Story details are, of course, being kept under wraps, but Cameron and Miller are treating the new movie as a direct sequel to Cameron’s T2: Judgment Day.

“This is a continuation of the story from ‘Terminator 1’ and ‘Terminator 2.’ And we’re pretending the other films were a bad dream,” Cameron told THR. “Or an alternate timeline, which is permissible in our multi-verse.”

We also know that Cameron plans to center the new film/trilogy around a new group of younger characters, who will eventually carry on the baton as it were.

“A lot of this is handing off the baton to a new generation of characters,” Cameron said. “We’re starting a search for an 18-something young woman to essentially be the new centerpiece of these stories. And then a number of other characters around her and characters from the future. We still fold time in the story in intriguing ways. But we have Arnold’s character and Linda’s character to anchor it.”

How excited are you for James Cameron’s new Terminator flick? Make sure to hit us up and let us know in the comments below or on social mdeia!

The new Terminator film is produced by James Cameron and will be directed by Tim Miller (Deadpool). The film stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton.

Terminator 2.5 is expected to hit July 26, 2019.

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