Exclusive: Director David Guy Levy on Would You Rather and More - Dread Central
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Exclusive: Director David Guy Levy on Would You Rather and More

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David Guy Levy’s wonderfully twisted thriller Would You Rather (review here) is now in select theaters and available on VOD. With his Clue, Saw and House on Haunted Hill mash-up, Levy has conjured up an unforgettable and often uncomfortable affair.

Dread Central recently chatted with Levy about his indie project and heard more on how he got involved with this sick and twisted (albeit entertaining) game of Would You Rather with screenwriter Steffen Schlachtenhaufen, why Jeffrey Combs would be the best game show host ever, their plans for a potential sequel and much more.

Dread Central: Congrats on making one of the more uncomfortable movies I’ve had to sit through in a while- which I mean as a compliment of course (laughs).

David Guy Levy: Thanks! That’s what we were aiming for so I’m glad to hear the movie worked for you (laughs).

Dread Central: Can you talk about what attracted you to the project and how you got involved?

David Guy Levy: Oh sure; well, Steffen (Schlachtenhaufen) approached me with a very simple pitch- he said, “What if we made a movie about a game of Would You Rather, but in our version, people had to choose whether or not to do awful things to themselves or each other?” So we took that idea and thought about all the movies we loved and figured out how we could tell this story the best way possible on a very small budget but still tell it the way we wanted to.

We wanted to approach the concept very realistically because I think seeing how playing this game affects ‘real’ people makes it all the more terrifying. We needed real characters and a real story to this, or we would have just ended up making an entirely different kind of horror movie altogether. We didn’t want to make anything too gratuitous either- for both Steffen and myself, Would You Rather was all about creating that tension and holding it from beginning to end.

So I had this idea for a dinner party, much like you see in Clue, where there’s this really disturbing mystery that’s unfolding, all led by this man who is just untouchable. I remember seeing this movie once about a roofer who’s doing a job at a mansion and overhears his employer getting a special invitation to an exclusive event. The guy dies so the roofer doesn’t think anyone would notice if he stole the invitation so he does; and when he shows up, it’s actually this high-stakes tournament of Russian Roulette that you aren’t allowed to leave once you arrive so he gets thrown into something far more sinister than he could have imagined. That’s the kind of tension we were going for.

Dread Central: Can you talk about bringing on Brittany (Snow) and why she was perfect for the role of Iris?

David Guy Levy: You know, she was one of the very first people that popped into my head when we were developing this story; I had a friend of mine, Adam Scott, reach out to her for us, and she agreed to meet with me for lunch to talk about the project. She really loved the story but was of course concerned like we were about Would You Rather turning into a torture porn movie, but I just convinced her that what we were going for was a far more ‘refined’ approach and asked her to trust me. Thankfully she did, and she was absolutely wonderful to work with.

Dread Central: And how about Jeffrey Combs- Lambrick just seemed like a role tailor-made for him.

David Guy Levy: When we were creating Lambrick, I sort of had Christoph Waltz’s character from Inglourious Basterds in the back of my mind. I wanted him to have that kind of flourish to him since Lambrick is essentially a very twisted version of a game show host; so one day Steffen showed me Jeffrey’s reel and I knew immediately that this was the guy. He just had that sensibility to him where I could picture Jeffrey being at the head of this really messed up ‘game show’- it’s all that charisma. Jeffrey would make a perfect game show host if he wasn’t already such a brilliant actor.

So we sent him the script, and one day later he sent back not an acceptance letter but a thank you note, which I thought was really special. And Jeffrey really brought this amazing energy with him to set each and every day, which ended up being somewhat infectious because I could see everyone from the cast to the crew really feeding off of and responding to that, which was just amazing.

There was this really great moment with John Heard’s character, a recovering alcoholic, who has to drink a full decanter of brandy. Originally it was supposed to be a bottle of wine, in reference to John’s glass of wine he refused to drink, but Jeffrey saw that a bottle of wine wasn’t really that much of a threat so he suggested upping the ante and making it a decanter of booze since that will really mess someone up. That was just brilliant, something I hadn’t really considered, and so it was little things like that from Jeffrey that really elevated Would You Rather and also encouraged the other actors to find their own little moments to improve upon, which just made the movie that much stronger.

Dread Central: So what’s coming up next for you then? Are you planning on working in the horror genre again?

David Guy Levy: People always like to say that they don’t like to label themselves- well, I don’t like to unlabel myself if that makes any sense so I’d love to come back and do more horror and even do another Would You Rather movie, too. Steffen and I are working on writing a potential sequel now so we’ll see where that goes. Right now I’m just focused on getting my new comic book out called “Back to Back to the Future,” which is about what would have happened had Eric Stoltz had never been replaced by Michael J. Fox. I originally wrote the story for a class thesis when I was in college and just developed it from there. I knew I could never get it made as a movie so I thought a comic book would be a great treatment for this story.

Synopsis
In the wake of her parent’s death, Iris struggles to make ends meet while caring for her terminally ill younger brother. Shepard Lambrick, a seemingly philanthropic aristocrat, expresses an interest in helping them. When he invites her to an exclusive dinner party, she accepts. Also attending the dinner party are seven more desperate individuals. They soon find themselves trapped in Lambrick’s mansion and forced to play a sadistic game of Would You Rather, where the winner will be awarded untold amounts of money. As the game progresses, the dilemmas Iris and the other players face grow increasingly deadly.

Exclusive: Director David Guy Levy on Would You Rather and More

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Buy Stuff From Eibon Press, Get More Stuff For Free

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Eibon Press have announced that they’re starting Black Friday a day early and will be running their specials for almost a week, through November 28th. This year, they’re doing something a little different, a little more interesting. Rather than reduce prices on their inventory, they’re doing a deal where depending on how much you buy from their store, you’ll get a certain amount of free swag in addition to your order.

The first tier sees anyone who makes a purchase getting two double-sided mini-posters featuring art from their upcoming Bottomfeeder and Maniac and The New York Ripper series. The second tier sees anyone who spends at least $30 getting a free copy of their VHS Comics titles Laserblast plus the mini-posters. The final tier is for those who spend $50 and more and that will net the mini-posters, the #1 issue of Laserblast, and a free copy of Lucio Fulci’s Gates of Hell #2.

Lastly, five random people will receive an extra bonus gift, which they won’t reveal but promise that, “…you’ll love it!

All order cans be placed via Eibon Press.

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KISS Meets Army of Darkness in New Comic Miniseries!

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Dynamite Entertainment just announced that they are planning to bring two of their bestselling brands together in “KISS/Army of Darkness #1”. The new comic book series will unite the rock band with none other than Ash for some Deadite ass kicking.

The series will be written by Chad Bowers and Chris Sims and illustrated by Ruairi Coleman. And the debut issue of “KISS/Army of Darkness” features three art covers from Kyle Strahm, Goni Montes, and Ken Haeser.

You can find all three covers below along with quotes from the creative team. After looking through all of that make sure to hit us up and let us know how excited you are about this new hybrid comic series in the comments below or on social media!

With Ash vs. The Army of Darkness, Chris and I were given kind of carte blanche to do whatever we wanted to the world of AOD, and we went for broke,” Co-writer Chad Bowers says. “We introduced some new characters and concepts, and built a legacy for Ash’s comics adventures that I’m immensely proud of, but not in a million years could I have guessed we’d get to continue that momentum with the added bonus of tossing the world’s greatest rock n’ roll band into the mix! I’ve been in the tank for KISS since I was in middle school. I remember buying the KISS tribute album, KISS My Ass for the Lemonheads (they covered Plaster Caster), which lead to me picking up Greatest Hits, and so on. But when I found out there was a KISS comic with blood in it, I signed up for life! Of course, I adore the songs (literally listening to Do You Love Me right now), but I’m just as obsessed with the way KISS transcends the music to become something of a genre themselves. It’s something I think about a lot, honestly, so no surprise, it’s a big part of our story too!”

“When it comes to Army of Darkness, I guess you could say that Ash is a bit of a gambler, but he’s nobody’s fool,” Co-writer Chris Sims says. “And since our first story was set back at Alan Shepard High, we’re looking forward to showing him some things that you can’t learn in school. Okay, okay, I’ll stop with the deep-cut lyrics now, but for real — if you thought Deadites at Homecoming and the Supernatural Military-Adjacent Response Team were taking Ash in a new direction, just wait until you see how we team him up with the Starchild, Space Ace, the Demon, and the Catman. In the grand tradition of the film, we’re tearing up the entire space-time continuum and if you think you know how weird this is gonna get… well, you sure know somethin’!”

“Having done some work for Dynamite in the past, I’ve really been wanting to get my foot in the door here for a long time so I can play in the sandbox of the amazing licenses they have,” Artist Ruairi Coleman says. “Chief among those, and high up on my bucket list, is Army of Darkness: Hail to the king, baby! So, when I was offered the job of drawing the KISS/Army of Darkness crossover, I couldn’t believe my luck! The concept is totally bonkers, but in a way, that would make complete sense in the world of Army of Darkness. Thinking about it, I’m surprised it hasn’t been done already and I’m honored (and more than a little intimidated) to be the guy who draws it.”

“After a more than 40-year career, KISS continues to be one of rock’s most celebrated bands, while Army of Darkness continues to be a staple in the comic book industry. We’re both honored to have the opportunity to work so closely with Gene and Paul to bring their world-renowned alter-egos to comics alongside our very own Ashy Slashy,” says Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. “The raging guitar chords and pyrotechnic spectacle of their stage shows could have come straight from the pages of the Necronomicon, and this epic battle between The Demon and Deadites will appeal to the hellions in all of us!”

Issue #1 will be available on digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, Kindle, iBooks, Google Play, Dynamite Digital, iVerse, Madefire, and Dark Horse Digital.

The KISS/Army of Darkness miniseries event hits February 2018.

Synopsis:

KISS is on top of the world and rocking faces until the night disciples of The Destroyer show up and the band disappears. With the tour canceled, a young Ash misses one of the most important events of his life that will change his destiny. Now the Chosen One has to get back on the right path and join the KISS ARMY OF DARKNESS!

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Jason Lives Director Pitched Follow-Up: Jason Vs Cheech and Chong

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One of my favorite entries in the Friday the 13th series is director ‘s Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives. The mixture of old-school gothic horror and comedy is always a welcome treat around these parts.

But why wasn’t McLoughlin asked to write and direct the follow-up?

Actually, it turns out he was asked to follow up Jason Lives, McLoughlin recently told Mick Garris on the Post Mortem podcast.

But his pitch – Jason vs Cheech and Chong – didn’t go over so well…

“[Frank Mancuso Jr.] wanted me to do another film after we did Jason,” McLoughlin says. “And I said, ‘What are you thinking? I don’t know what it could be now.’ And he said, ‘Well, what do you think about Freddy (Krueger) and Jason?’ And I go, ‘But Freddy’s at New Line and the guys at Paramount have [Jason].’ And it’s like, ‘Well, we’re going to try and see if we can work something out.’ So, I started thinking about that, going, It doesn’t make sense. I mean he lives in one realm and — you know, I take this stuff very seriously, what realm a monster’s supposed to stay in. And he came back, he goes, ‘Eh, forget it, it’s not going to work anyway.’ And I said, ‘You know what? You guys own Cheech and Chong. What if we do Cheech and Chong-meets-Jason? They’re like camp counselors or something. It’s like, ‘Hey, man, I saw Jason out there.’ ‘No, man, that’s a myth.’ But he said, ‘You know what? No.’”

Too bad. While I don’t know how well a Cheech and Chong/Friday the 13th flick would go, with McLoughlin at the helm, the film would have at least been funny as hell.

Plus we already got these two knuckleheads in Part III.

Are you upset we never got Tom McLoughlin’s Jason vs Cheech and Chong? Make sure to let us know in the comments below or on social media!

You can buy Friday the 13th: Part VI – Jason Lives on Blu-ray HERE.

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