The Walking Dead: Dispatches from the Set with Greg Melton; Another New TV Spot - Dread Central
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The Walking Dead: Dispatches from the Set with Greg Melton; Another New TV Spot

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“The Walking Dead” on AMC.com

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Another week, another one of AMC’s “Dispatches from the Set” of “The Walking Dead” has popped up online. This time we hear from production designer Greg Melton, who explains how to devastate a stretch of Georgia highway, shares what goes into building a barn, and explains what all that teaches him about surviving the apocalypse. In addition we have a look at a new TV spot that aired during last night’s “Breaking Bad” episode on the network.

Q: In Season 1 you created a devastated downtown Atlanta. For Season 2 you got a stretch of devastated highway. How did they compare?

A: They were pretty similar actually as far as getting them organized and doing your homework and getting the blocking and positioning of things that need to happen as the scene unfolds. We got really great cooperation down here from the Georgia Department of Transportation to shut down a big four-lane highway, which was the biggest thing — we needed something major. Once we had that, it was just a matter of trying to figure out how many cars would tell the story. I think at one point, on our biggest day, we put almost 200 vehicles into that set, which was over a quarter of a mile long.

Q: And then you have to dress each of the vehicles…

A: Exactly. It’s all people who are fleeing so they’re filled with bags and lots of stuff. And then it’s been sitting there for weeks so we have to come through and do a real heavy aging pass on everything. And then we trashed the highway. Literally. We were dumping bags and bags of trash and things. Everywhere you could see. We created two or three wrecks with burnt grass in the median. I love doing sets like that because you just stand out there and you start putting things around. There are only so many floor plans you can do. And then you gotta stand there in that space and just make it happen.

Q: What’s been the biggest challenge in Season 2?

A: The biggest challenge was to find the perfect farm. Ever since the end of the first season, everybody’s like "The Farm!" And I couldn’t even think about it: Are we gonna build it? Are we gonna find something? Are we gonna find half of something and build the other half? It really all takes place here. Having said that, once we got it, there were still things we had to work into it like building the barn and then putting a position in for the camp for everyone to hang out. So between the house and the barn and the camp, we created this nice sort of triangle of action and story.

The Walking Dead: Dispatches from the Set with Greg Melton

Q: Did any work have to go into dressing the house, or are you shooting it as-is?

A: The exterior of the house, for the most part, we’re shooting as-is. We ended up basically emptying the entire inside of the house and redressing it for our needs as Hershel’s farmhouse. But the exterior of the house was perfect the way it was.

Q: Cinematographer David Boyd told us you designed the barn to look "alive". What was the inspiration for that?

A: Initially there was some talk about maybe burning the barn so I was real interested in giving the barn a kind of face. So it kind of had a personality, and if we were going to do the burn, it would be very dramatic to see this screaming face down in the meadow. But the approach, it’s much like with the house — the house at first glance is just sort of this beautiful setting and it’s a lovely farmhouse. And then at times there are certain ways you can shoot it, or find an angle, and it can look very disturbing and menacing. And I wanted the barn to have the same feeling. Like, "Oh, isn’t that a lovely barn sitting out in the pasture," and then to find that way to tilt it into that sort of horror — it’s an ominous, dreadful place.

Q: The barn looks like it’s been there 100 years but is actually brand new. How did you achieve that look?

A: We actually bought an old roof off of a barn down here in Georgia, and we got this beautifully aged and rusted tin roof that’s been around for 80, 90 years. That aspect of it is old, but everything else is new. It’s literally delivered brand new wood, and then we just did our aging passes with it. I wanted it to not be too dark because we’re going to have nighttime work around it so I kind of skewed it towards a more greyed out, washed out so it would catch moonlight.

Q: Having dressed all these sets, do you know what you’d do in the event of an apocalypse?

A: Yeah. It’s interesting because as you go through this show, you realize there’s really nowhere to run. That’s one thing I’ve learned about this apocalypse. And so I think I would probably hunker down in my own house and fortify it and try to ride it out. It’s not like there’s a hurricane coming that’s gonna destroy the house. It’s just, can you defend it? You might as well just stay put and protect yourself. Kind of the way Morgan did in the Pilot. He fortified the house and was able to live there and stay quiet. There’s something to be said for that in a zombie apocalypse. [Laughs] Be quiet.

Kicking off a two-week long Fearfest, the network will once again present viewers with a 90-minute premiere episode, airing at 9:00 PM ET on Sunday, October 16th, with six one-hour episodes in the weeks following. The final six episodes of the season will commence on Sunday, February 12th at 9:00 PM ET.

To stay up-to-the-minute on all things walker related, follow @WalkingDead_AMC on Twitter and visit “The Walking Dead” on Facebook. For more be sure to hit up the official “The Walking Dead” page on AMC.com.

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Jesper Kyd Returning to Score Vermintide 2

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From the cover of Kyd's first Vermintide OST

Get your headphones ready, Warhammer fans because State of Decay and Darksiders 2 composer Jesper Kyd is back to score the upcoming Warhammer title Vermintide 2! The game will be coming to PC and consoles early this year.

Kyd was inspired by Norse mythology, utilizing ancient tribal music as well as dark fantastical elements to build upon the acoustic soundscapes he composed for the first Vermintide game. Channeling his own Scandinavian roots, Kyd will blend Viking and Norse-inspired vocals with ritualistic percussion styles to create a unique soundtrack experience.

Three tracks from the score can be heard below.

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Like Me – Will You Like This Dystopian Thriller?

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Starring Addison Timlin, Ian Nelson, Larry Fessenden

Directed by Robert Mockler


While Like Me is not dystopian in the classic science-fiction sense, it does aptly put the downer vibe across. If the present is abysmal, then the future is downright hopeless. We learn this as we follow an unhinged teenage loner called Kiya (Addison Timlin) on a hollow crime spree that she broadcasts on social media. At first the world “likes” her—with the exception of YouTube rival Burt (Ian Nelson), who disdainfully denounces her viral videos—but pride goes before the fall, and Kiya’s descent is spectacular.

If you’ve peeped the trailer for Like Me, then you’re probably expecting a horror movie. I mean, they’ve got the requisite menacing masked baddie and they’ve got genre icon Larry Fessenden in a major role—those are a couple of the key ingredients, right? Yes they are, but this simmering, shimmering stew of Natural Born Killers, Excision and King Kelly, it boils down to a whole lotta nothing. Like Me is sort of a drama, kind of a road trip flick, and almost a thriller. It succeeds at none yet does stand on its own as a compelling collection of cool visuals and pertinent performances. But is that enough?

While Kiya is a compelling character on the surface, there’s barebones beneath. Sure, she’s a Millennial mind-fed on random online clips and snappy soundbites—but what turned her into a psychopath? Was she born that way? Is social media to blame? We’ll never know, because not a hint is given. I don’t mind ambiguity, but even a morsel would have been welcome in this case. As Kiya ramps up her reckless exhibitionistic extremes, the stakes are never raised. In the end, who cares? Maybe that’s the point.

A word of warning: If you plan on watching this movie while chomping snacks…don’t. There is stomach-turning scene after vomit-inducing scene of orgiastic easting, binging, and the inevitable purging. I’m sure it’s all metaphorical mastication, a cutting comment on disposable consumption. I get it. But I don’t wanna look at it, again and again and again. Having said that, Like Me is an experimental film and in its presentation of such grotesquery, it’s quite accomplished. Montages, split-screens and jittered motions are scattered throughout, showing us all sorts of unpleasant things…Kudos to the editor.

I didn’t hate Like Me. But I do think one has to be in the mood for a movie such as this. It’s not an easy or entertaining watch, but it is a peculiar and thought-provoking one. There’s some style and mastery behind the camera, and I am curious to see what first-time writer-director Rob Mockler comes up with next.

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Last Toys on the Left

Funko Giving Jurassic Park the Pop! Treatment as Only They Can

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It is no secret we’re BIG fans of Funko’s Pop! Vinyl line here at DC HQ, and now they’ve announced a new series that has made our hearts just about burst… read on for a look at Pop! Movies: Jurassic Park, heading our way in February. The regular figures are awesome on their own, but wait until you see the exclusives!

From the Funko Blog:
Jurassic Park fans, get excited! To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the iconic film’s appearance on the silver screen, Jurassic Park is coming to Pop!

This series of Pop! features paleontologist Dr. Grant, Jurassic Park CEO John Hammond, mathematician Dr. Malcolm, and embryo-smuggler Dennis Nedry. (Keep an eye out for Dr. Ellie Sattler in Pop! Rides coming soon.)

We couldn’t forget the Jurassic Park dinosaurs! Featured in this line are the great T. rex, Velociraptor, and Dilophsaurus. Look for the Dilophosaurus chase, a rarity of 1-in-6.

Be on the lookout for exclusives. At Target you can find a wounded Dr. Malcolm, and the Dennis Nedry and Dilophosaurus 2-pack is available only at Entertainment Earth.

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