Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht! - Dread Central
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Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

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With Midnight Son getting set for its festival premiere and run, we have a veritable grab-bag of goodies for you to get the blood pumping. Then spraying.

The filmmakers released new key art and more to celebrate the upcoming festival screenings the film will have.

Midnight Son will make its World Premiere at the Cinequest Film Festival in San Jose, California on March 4 @ 9:30 PM. Writer/director Scott Leberecht, producer Matt Compton, and several cast members will be in attendance and will participate in a Q&A after the screening. The film will have two additional screenings at Cinequest: March 6 @ 6:45 PM and March 11 @ 12:30 PM. Tickets are available by clicking here. It will also screen at the Omaha Film Festival on March 5 @ 8:30 PM.

We’re really excited about the festival screenings we have coming up. So many people have worked so hard on the film, and it’s very rewarding to finally be able to show it to an audience,” says Scott Leberecht. “Cinequest is a wonderful celebration of independent cinema, so we’re really thrilled to be having the World Premiere there,” adds Matt Compton.

Midnight Son (review here) is a dark, character-driven drama that plays on horror themes in an understated, subtle way. The story centers on Jacob, a young man grappling with a dramatic physical transformation. No matter how much he eats, he suffers from malnutrition. To his disgust, he finds the blood in his steak packaging more satisfying than the steak itself. Something is changing inside him. When romance sparks with a young woman named Mary, he wrestles with the monster he’s becoming while desperately trying to keep his new craving a secret.

With Midnight Son writer/director Scott Leberecht, who also directed the insane short The Lobo Para-Military Christmas Special starring Andrew Bryniarski of Texas Chainsaw fame, makes his feature film debut with Zak Kilberg, Maya Parish, Jo D. Jonz, Arlen Escarpeta (Friday the 13th remake and the upcoming Final Destination 5), Larry Cedar (The Crazies), and Tracey Walter (Repo Man and the I Spit On Your Grave remake) all starring.

Eduardo Sanchez, co-creator of The Blair Witch Project, is on board as executive producer of the film along with Matt Compton, who served as co-producer on Sanchez’s Altered and producer on Seventh Moon.

For more visit the official Midnight Son website, befriend Midnight Son on Facebook, and follow Midnight Son on Twitter!

Synopsis:
MIDNIGHT SON is the story of Jacob, a young man confined to a life of isolation due to a rare skin disorder that prevents him from being exposed to sunlight. His world opens up when he meets Mary, a local bartender, and falls in love. Tragically, Jacob’s actions become increasingly bizarre as he struggles to cope with the effects of his worsening condition. Forced by the disease to drink human blood for sustenance, he must control his increasingly violent tendencies as local law enforcement narrow their focus on him as a suspect in a series of grisly murders.

Dig on some new stills and artwork below and click NEXT for an advance Q&A with director Scott Leberecht.

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Midnight Son Preview Blow-Out: New Stills! New Art! Screening Info! Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!

Q&A with writer/director Scott Leberecht

Q: Tell us a little about the origins of Midnight Son, from concept to financing.

A: When I lived in San Francisco, there was an old house I walked past every day that was boarded up and seemingly abandoned. The odd thing was that someone had covered the windows (from the inside) with whimsical paintings of trees and rainbow landscapes. I imagined a person trapped inside that could not come out, trying to connect with people passing by – someone who perhaps could not be exposed to sunlight and was very lonely. At that point I realized I had never really seen a vampire film that depicted the physical condition as something debilitating and tragic, as opposed to empowering or romantic.

Once I had the screenplay written, I created concept art, a storyboard animatic, and the paintings (that appear in the film) as a way to impress potential investors and help them understand the look and feel. The first investor was Kevin McCorkle. He and his wife, Lisa, embraced the film instantly and opened many doors for us. Without them, Max Curry, and Maya Parish, I never would have shot the movie. We raised enough money for production, and I naively believed that we would easily get the rest of the money for post-production once people saw the footage. This was our first big stall. Months went by, then David C Hughes, our Sound Designer, told Eduardo Sanchez about my predicament.

Q&A with Director Scott Leberecht!Eduardo checked out the website, then emailed me to see some footage. I sent him a few clips, and he asked to read the screenplay. After reading it, he called to say he wanted to help finish the film and brought on two other producers that he’d worked with in the past: Matt Compton and Reed Frerichs. I was thrilled. We were on our way again, but the 2008 economic downturn was our next big stall. We could no longer afford to pay an editor, and at that point I realized the only way the film was ever going to be finished was if I learned Final Cut Pro and did it myself. For many months I edited while Eduardo, Matt, and Reed gave me notes. Ed became my mentor and guide, teaching me things that only come with the kind of experience he has. Now that the film is finished, we are navigating the complex waters of distribution, and I feel incredibly lucky to be in a partnership with such wonderful, experienced producers.

Q: Vampire films have been the “IT” topic on the big and small screens these days, with much criticism of certain sparkly vampires. You return the genre to its original horror, but how would you say Midnight Son is different from any other vampire film out today?

A: One aspect I struggled with was explaining the origin of his condition. Contracting the disease by being bitten felt cliché and derivative of other vampire movies. I wanted my character to be the victim of his own body. Congenital illness, puberty, sexual attraction, and love are all things that happen to us from the inside out. We generally dislike being at the mercy of anything, but when the thing we don’t want emanates from within, our self-image shatters. We must cope with a new set of rules, and our identity is temporarily on hold. These are very scary moments in life. I think the mysterious origin of his illness makes MIDNIGHT SON unique.

Q: What was your best and/or worst experience while making Midnight Son?

A: The best experience was working with a cast and crew who all understood that independent filmmaking at this level means that we must not only do the job we are going to be credited for, we must be willing to do anyone’s job. Actors hauled gear, wardrobe handled props, and the director parked cars. It’s the only way to get a no budget film made, and everyone accepted this. It was truly inspiring, and I was witnessing the kind of collaboration a filmmaker only dreams of.

The worst was when our lead actor (Zak Kilberg) had to go to the emergency room with abdominal pains. Like a true pro, he physically pushed himself to the very edge. I was terrified he had gone too far, and that I had asked him to go too far. For 24 hours I had no idea whether or not Zak had a serious medical problem and if we’d be able to finish the film. Luckily, he was okay, and we started shooting again the next day.

Q: In your own words, why should people see Midnight Son?

A: MIDNIGHT SON is what I would call a ‘thinking man’s horror film’. I can’t enjoy movies targeted to teens, so it’s hard for me to find anything that plumbs the depths of human fear in a way that moves me. People should see it if they are looking for a mature, sensitive story that also appeals to the monster-movie-loving kid inside us all.

Look for more on this flick soon!


Midnight Son – Trailer
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Spoilers: Which Major Walking Dead Actor Might Leave the Series After This Season?

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*** POSSIBLE SPOILERS ***

Like many of you out there, I gave up on AMC’s The Walking Dead a long time ago. In fact, I gave up after they fired Frank Darabont following the horrendous second season.

That said, I’m not bitter towards the series, and hell, even I watched the season premiere where Negan beat the brains off Big Red and the dude from Mayhem.

Also, I’m aware there has been some controversy surrounding the “death” (yeah, right) of Chandler Rigg’s character. I have no opinion on the matter.

Speaking of character deaths, we might want to expect another this season as it looks like Lauren Cohan, aka Maggie, has taken another job on the ABC pilot “Whiskey Cavalier.”

While this doesn’t immediately mean Cohan’s Maggie character will kick the big old zombie-bucket… it pretty much means that.

Variety reports that Cohan has been in negotiations with AMC for months over her return, but she does not currently have a contract for the ninth season and will instead take the lead in the new ABC pilot.

Do you think this means Maggie is done for? Let us know below!

“The Walking Dead” returns on Sunday, February 25th.

Season 8B Synopsis:
All-out war has had a devastating impact on every person involved. The communities themselves are fractured. Alexandria has been destroyed, the people at Hilltop finds themselves pinned, and the Kingdom is shattered — half of them dead, the other half controlled by the Saviors.

At the very center — Rick, having been distracted by the conflict, has just returned home to learn that Carl, who heroically shepherded the Alexandrians to safety during Negan’s attack, has been bitten by a walker. Once his sole motivation in this otherwise stark existence, Rick is forced to deal with this reality. Carl has always been a beacon of hope, a symbol for the remaining thread of humanity — lessons that the survivors around him would be wise to take with them as this war surges onward.

But Rick isn’t the only person who’s living in peril. Aaron and Enid are in a dire situation at Oceanside — unclear if they’re in friendly territory, or if they’ve just made new enemies. Father Gabriel will do his part in attempting to smuggle Dr. Carson safely back to the Hilltop, and a pregnant Maggie is wrestling with the many moral gray areas that come with leadership during war. In a standoff with the Saviors, she must decide how to proceed with the dozens of POW lives she’s currently in control of, as well as new complications that come with being a leader.

In addition to the war, Negan continues to deal with struggles within his ranks as workers, traitors, and others’ thirst for power cause conflict at the Sanctuary. Having gifted the Saviors a major victory, Eugene’s loyalty is repeatedly tested as new obstacles present themselves.

As all-out war consumes us, the line between good and evil continues to blur. People fighting for what they believe in. Everybody working together for something bigger — to feel safe and have a world worth living in.

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Filthy and Fine! The Best Shots of Ash vs. Evil Dead

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The Evil Dead franchise is my all time favorite horror series, which evolves its mythos with each entry. Of course, the original Evil Dead has been just a straight-up horror film, but thanks to the fateful meeting of filmmaker Scott Spiegel, director Sam Raimi took the franchise into a strange comedic territory, using slapstick while still keeping the tones of sheer terror. What makes this terror stay with the franchise even with Ash’s loudmouth persona is it’s influential and inspiring camera work that Sam Raimi makes a legend behind the camera.

After years of waiting for the master of horror to return to the Evil Dead franchise, our palates were satiated with “Ash Vs Evil Dead” which continued the inspiring cinematography. With two seasons of a television show under Raimi’s watchful eye and a third season on the way, I took a look at every episode in the series to see if each director on board the project kept that eye for cinematography and shooting style. The series was notorious for it’s over the top gore and gags and I could’ve sat here and just gushed over the geysers of blood emitting from every orifice in the show, but, what I found in each episode brought more and more to the table. There are still horrifying shots to balance out the comedy of the show, but there are also amazing character moments within that foreshadow and evolve each character.

Think about it, other than Ash we’ve never had a cast of characters that survived more than two minutes but now there’s a crew of Ghostbeaters! Don’t worry as we still have randoms coming in and out that leave you to ponder, “How long can this poor Shemp live?” as they burst into blood and viscera. There are shots that revel in the grotesque, but there are also shots that revel in who our heroes are and delve into their psyches, the specialty of the Deadites! For those who’d like to follow along with the shots in the show, I’ve given you the time these shots show up if you’re watching the show on Netflix skipping the recaps.

To see the images in their full-size glory, give them a groovy little click!


S1E1: “El Jefe”
Directed By Sam Raimi
12:53
The flashlight twirling on the ground illuminating the scene as it spins on the two detectives faces gives way to one of the best sequences in the series. As Amanda’s deadite partner attacks her, the light spins furiously with the actions of the scene as she tries to retrieve her gun. When she retrieves the gun and aims it at the deadite the audience member would get a sigh of relief that she would triumph but is then tricked into terror. The flashlight spinning becomes slower and slower on both their faces as the man cries in pain pleading to his partner. The light illuminates his transformation back into a deadite horrifyingly for a slow dread filled shot. This shot and sequence show Sam still has it and sets up the series for what’s to come.



S1E2: “Bait”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
12:30
As Ash brings down the cross upon the ground the camera pans to Pablo and Kelly with a bright sunrise upon them. While the horrors of the night are over it is this sunrise the signifies the dawning of Kelley’s new life and her dialogue over this shot swears her vengeance.


S1E3: “Books From Beyond”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
2:38
Up until this point, Ruby has remained a mystery and not given us a sense of danger. Against the howl of the windmill in the background bathing in the moonlight we see her unleash the Kandarian dagger upon the already impaled deadite with a smirk on her face. This shot unravels her mystery bit by bit hauntingly as the first person besides Ash to stare down a Deadite with no fear.


S1E4: “Brujo”
Directed By David Frazee
22:40
The Brujo’s entire set up is pretty creepy with all sorts of totems that he utilizes for good but look haunting. When Kelly steps into the barn possessed by Eligos the totems come to life and react to the evil stepping before them. The best one though is the face that quickly begins to disappear bit by bit as Kelly approaches. It utters the word Mentirosa, Spanish for a liar, as she steps forth, giving way to a visually striking and terrifying warning.


S1E5: “The Host”
Directed By: David Frazee
21:26
Pablo bids farewell to his youth and tutelage under the Brujo while stepping into a new life with Ash that is more in tune with his family’s spiritual upbringing. With each totem lighting up as Pablo walks by the shots build Pablo’s feelings of loss toward a teacher as Pablo emerges a warrior that foreshadows his importance later to come as the first magical force of good in a fight that’s only ever cast spells of evil.


S1E6: “The Killer of Killers”
Directed By Michael Hurst
20:24
This is one of the most hilarious yet meaningful shots of the episode. Amanda’s boss has become a deadite ready to kill her. Ash shoots Amanda’s boss in the head, making her question the authority she had adhered to so much. Her idea of Ash as a villain changed with that charming Smile and look to Amanda in a gory pose over the lower jaw of her former boss. Ash looks to her like Uncle Sam simply saying join us! Blood and viscera flowing around him like a fountain. Dangling legs in the background as an added bonus!


S1E7: “Fire In The Hole”
Directed By Michael Hurst
19:25
Actions in combat can tell a story just like any dance. The compatibility between our heroes is evocative of Ash and Amanda’s budding romance during the entire sequence. However, it is this one masterful shot of the two working in unison dodging hellfire that tells the story of warrior’s love lit by demon fire!


S1E8: “Ashes to Ashes”
Directed By Tony Tilse
18:21
Ash can never escape the past it seems as the series goes on. He is hesitant to trust Pablo and Kelly as friends in his adventure for fear of losing them like he has lost so many others. This infamous shot from Evil Dead 2 is one of the few things that could make him question his machismo. This time he doesn’t even bring the chainsaw down on his beloved Linda but is forced to watch as an invisible chainsaw comes down upon her head forcing him to be reminded of what he did. This plays heavily into his decision making near the end of the season.



S1E9: “Bound In Flesh”
Directed By Tony Tilse
25:20
We finally get to see the book speak and beg Ash to not destroy it. This is something we’ve become accustomed to in the comic series, but have never been treated to the book itself speaking to Ash otherwise. We as the audience become the eye of the book and in true Evil Dead fashion watch, Pablo scream as the camera rushes toward him and he fuses with the book. This moment is the change in Pablo that clashes with his new direction discovered in the shot in Episode 5, which then tortures him internally until the end of season 2 where he is constantly being pulled by the necklace of the Brujo and the evil of the books spells.


S1E10: “The Dark One”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
19:06
A dreary moonlight shot of blues against the cabin looking ominous as Kelly stares on drenched in blood and anger. It’s a hauntingly beautiful shot. Kelly has fully embraced herself as a ghost beater and is done being tormented ready to start saving her boys. For a lot of characters, this could easily be a breaking point, but this shot affirms Dana Delorenzo as Kelly among some of the most powerful and able Final Girls on the rise.


S2E1: “Home”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
27:31
This shot is very telling of Ruby’s betrayal to evil. As her children surround and attack her, she is obscured by darkness and where she lies in terror a bright light emanates from behind her illuminating the scene as if to show her becoming a hero against evil.


S2E2: “The Morgue”
Directed By Tony Tilse
16:41
When this episode aired it was one of the most talked about and disgustingly depraved things to see. A simple Camera rig in front of Ash as he struggles to get out of a corpse, pubic hairs and dick swinging in his face. If Dead Alive wanted to take Evil Dead’s title of biggest gross-out scenes, then “Ash Vs Evil Dead” took the title back with excrement and body fluids all over our hero.


S2E3: “Last Call”
Directed By Tony Tilse
23:08
There are a ton of great shots of the evil Delta but perhaps the best one is this single frame of Lacey telling her boyfriend she loves him as he is splattered across the windshield. Blood and glass between them as they try for one last kiss against the fire and demonic lighting coming from the Delta and then splat! It’s a small touching moment that makes Lacey’s character a bit more sympathetic as the show goes on. As for her boyfriend? Well, I told you there would be plenty of Shemps to kill off.


S2E4: “DUI”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
1:45
After splattering Ash’s dad across the street, The Delta pulls up with a camera spin into the grill revealing an eye stuck in it. Ash’s one true love, his car, that’s survived everything has turned against him and killed his father just as they had reconnected. A perfect role reversal as Brock William’s severed eye is now staring down Ash through the grill of the car. No longer a window into Brock’s soul, but a sick vision of Ash’s love turned enemy.


S2E5: “Confinement”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
17:46
Flashing between light and darkness as the skin is ripped and blood is splattered gives us a horrifying look for the first time at the main antagonist of the season. Baal emerges from the flesh of humanity showing how we are all merely tools for his psychological deceptions.


S2E6: “Trapped Inside”
Directed By Mark Beesley
11:37
The moon reflects an eerie light upon Cheryl’s picture as it begins to bleed like the statue of Mary. The innocence of Ash’s sister was never saved and her soul weeps as the flesh is resurrected for evil’s bidding.


S2E7: “Delusion”
Directed By Mark Beesley
23:59
This entire episode is about breaking down Ash’s spirit and character, making him think he’s truly insane. As he’s at the breaking point he sees his friends and his love for them saves him. It’s a really simple shot that’s amplified by Bruce’s performance, but that disturbed look against the shadowy bars across his face in the dreary room give him his eureka moment where he comes down from his insanity and understands what he has to do to win.


S2E8: “Ashy Slashy”
Directed By Tony Tilse
14:13
Throughout the season the town builds up a boogeyman mythos in Ashy Slashy that we know as an audience member isn’t true but this shot brings Ashy Slashy to life. That boogeyman becomes real as the straight jacket becomes Ashy Slashy’s costume and the fire created by the chainsaw shows a side of Ash we’ve never seen. In this shot, we are convinced he had become a mindless killer.


S2E9: “Home Again”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
19:51
We’ve only ever heard his voice and seen his ghost save for a few shots of him discovering the Necronomicon in Evil Dead 2. Professor Knowby watches his student, Tanya, bleed out on the floor. She looks up at her mentor with horror as light swings back and forth casting shadows on his face. He is almost serial killer in nature and the shot reflects how his quest for knowledge outweighs his humanity. We see Professor Knowby and his daughter Ruby are not too dissimilar.


S2E10: “Second Coming”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
26:12
The finale brings Ash back to the cabin having to completely confront his past to change the future. With Pablo dead, because of Ash’s own follies, it is in the ashes of Ash’s dark past that Pablo is reborn, no longer tormented by the Necronomicon he takes his first breath as a new human. The evil within him gone and his life ready to begin anew.


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McKenna Grace Snags Lead in Rob Lowe’s Remake of The Bad Seed

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Okay so, evidently Rob Lowe is remaking The Bad Seed. Meh, I’m interested. But wait, evidently it will be a Lifetime original film. Urgh, interest is waning.

All jokes aside, I’m intrigued by this remake. Not only is it set to star Rob Lowe, but the man will be directing and executive producing as well.

Another interesting variation is that this film will follow Lowe’s father figure dealing with the evil child, instead of the original film’s mother character played by Nancy Kelly.

And on top of that, today we have news via Deadline that McKenna Grace (Amityville: The Awakening) has been cast as the titular bad seed, Emma, and Patty McCormack – who played the evil little girl in the original, and received an Oscar nomination for performance – will co-star as the psychiatrist who treats Emma.

Grace will next be seen in the Netflix series The Haunting of Hill House from director Mike Flanagan (Hush, Gerald’s Game).

The Lifetime remake is directed and executive produced by Rob Lowe from a script by Barbara Marshall. Lowe as executive produces with Mark Wolper and Elizabeth Stephen and stars alongside Patty McCormack and McKenna Grace.

Synopsis:

Lowe plays a single father who seems to have everything under control. But when there is a terrible tragedy takes place at his daughter Emma’s (Grace) school, he is forced to question everything he thought he knew about his beloved daughter. He slowly begins to question if Emma’s exemplary behavior is just a façade and she played a role in the horrific incident. When more strange things begin to happen, he’s faced with keeping a terrible secret to protect Emma, but ultimately must stop her from striking again.

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