Evan Dickson wrote in for both Bloody Disgusting and Dread Central regarding an impromptu interview he did with co-directors Dennis Widmyer and Kevin Kolsch, along with star Alex Essoe, about their film Starry Eyes, coming soon from MPI’s Dark Sky Films.
Co-director and writer Dennis Widmyer explains the film, “It’s a horror/character study/body-horror/drama. It’s about an aspiring actress who is kind of desperate and she feels like she’s on the edge of not making it and she goes on a strange audition for a production company that turns out to be a cult. A satanic cult. They lure her in, and she starts to transform physically and mentally into something horrible.”
Alex Essoe, who plays the “Starry-Eyed” lead Sarah, elaborates, “There’s three distinct phases that I go through. It was extremely fun and very disturbing. She’s in a place that a lot of actresses will find familiar in that you’ve put a lot into it but you might not be getting a lot back. Because she’s already an outsider, it’s more than she can take. She’s very hard on herself. She already starts off obsessive.”
Co-director and writer Kevin Kolsch talks about his process with Widmyer, “We know each other very well. We know what we like and what we don’t like. A lot of times we don’t necessarily need to talk.”
They just wrapped an 18-day shoot; did they get enough material? “A lot of times you have to go out and get more movie, but not here. We actually have more than we need. We have a 130-minute rough cut we want to cut down a lot [laughs].”
About Starry Eyes:
From elevated genre production company Snowfort Pictures and MPI’s Dark Sky Films comes co-writers/directors Dennis Widmyer and Kevin Kolsch’s Hollywood-set occult tale STARRY EYES.
Starring ingénue Alex Essoe, the horror story is described as a contemporary take on movies such as Rosemary’s Baby. The cast is rounded out by Amanda Fuller (Cheap Thrills, “Last Man Standing” – ABC Television), Fabianne Therese (The Aggression Scale, John Dies at the End), Pat Healy (Cheap Thrills, Compliance, The Innkeepers), Shane Coffey (“Pretty Little Liars” – ABC Television), Marc Senter (Brawler, Red White & Blue), Nick Simmons, and Noah Segan (Looper, Deadgirl).
The screenplay penned by Widmyer and Kolsch was developed with the help of Snowfort’s Founder/CEO Travis Stevens, who is producing the film. The film is being executive produced by John Jarzemensky, Aaron Koontz, Giles Daoust, and Gena Wilbur.
Widmyer and Kolsch looked to the past for inspiration: “Starry Eyes utilizes the same approach genre films from the 1970’s used, where the horror stems from the character and what they are going through and where the horror represents the internal working of a character.”
Stevens adds: “We’re setting out to make a scary film for sure,-and Starry Eyes is as unsettling a film as you can get. But this is also a film about a generation who feel entitled to fame and an industry that feeds off that desire. And our hope is that the audience will be just as frightened by that dynamic as they are by the stunning special FX make-up.”
Look for lots more soon!
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