Exclusive: Patrick Melton Talks a Black Light Film, The Collection, Piranha 3DD, and Rise!

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We caught up with horror screenwriter Patrick Melton (the man behind such frightful fare – along with cohort Marcus Dunstan – as the Feast series, Saw IV through 3D and The Collector) last week to chat about The Collection, Black Light, Piranha 3DD, his new project Rise, and more.

The Collection is in the final stages of post-production,” said the 36-year-old Illinois transplant of progress on the flick, which he co-wrote with director Marcus Dunstan and which has been snapped up for distribution by Liddell Entertainment, who distributed its predecessor The Collector. “We tested the film about a month or so ago in Chatsworth, California, and it tested wonderfully. Actually, it was the highest testing movie we’ve written. So we were very pleased with that. As a result the picture is locked, and we’re putting on the spit and polish. Charlie Clouser of Saw fame is composing the score as we speak. He’s doing an amazing job. As for a release date, the plan is for theaters this fall.

On Piranha 3DD, a film directed by Feast series captain John Gulager which stars Katrina Bowden, Christopher Lloyd, Danielle Panabaker and Ving Rhames, “The status is the same,” Melton said of the flick, which he also co-wrote with Dunstan. “The aim is for a spring release, but Dimension has to figure out the exact date. As I’ve said, it’s a great spring break movie so somewhere in March or April would be ideal. There are also a couple of dates in May that might be good for counter-programming, but it’s up to the marketing folks at Dimension at this point. It tested really well, and everyone is very happy with it so we’ll have to see on the release.”

As for his novel Black Light, which he co-wrote with Dunstan as well as novelist Stephen Romano and which was released via Mulholland Books last October, “The response to it has been very good,” said Melton. “We got some nice reviews. The paperback is coming out soon, I believe, and we just started working with (producer) Mike De Luca on the film adaptation. That’s in the very early stages, though, but we are very excited that we’re moving forward.”

We additionally queried him on the possibility of a literary follow-up to the tome (which revolves around Buck Callahan, a private investigator whose unique gifts place him in demand for those looking for quick solutions to supernatural problems), and Melton replied, “Not sure, but we’ve talked about it. Our collaborator (Romano) is finishing up on his first solo novel. It’s called Resurrection Express, and it’s pretty awesome stuff. That’s coming out later this year.

As for the future of the Saw series, “Well, I think when any movie makes close to $140 million on a $17 million investment that there will always be rumblings,” answered the writer of future cinematic installments, “but everyone was pretty worn out after seven films in seven years so at this point I haven’t heard anything concrete. We had a good run. Perhaps Jigsaw will rise again in the near future. I don’t know.”

Regarding other genre endeavors Melton stated, “There are a few larger scale projects Marcus and I have been working on. First is (a film called) Rise, which is at Warner Brothers. It’ll be directed by a young director named David Karlak. We collaborated with him on a short film called The Candidate which got some attention and which will be online soon. The feature Rise is a sci-fi project, though I don’t want to say too much since there are some competing projects around town. We’re working on some other cool things, too, but it’d be premature to mention them at this point. I should have some announcements soon!

Exclusive: Patrick Melton Talks a Black Light film, The Collection, Piranha 3DD and Rise!

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Sean Decker

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