#SDCC 2013: Exclusive - Rock Icon Slash Talks Producing, His Love of Horror and Nothing Left to Fear
With his iconic top hat and wildly curly locks, music icon Slash is now embarking on a brand-new chapter of his career with the upcoming release of the first horror movie he’s producing called Nothing Left to Fear.
The cast includes Clancy Brown (The Shawshank Redemption), Anne Heche (Psycho, Rampart), James Tupper (Mr Popper’s Penguins), Jennifer Stone (Wizards of Waverly Place), Ethan Peck (In Time), and Rebekah Brandes (Bellflower). The story is based on the eerie real-life folklore of Stull, Kansas which has long been rumored to be one of the Gates of Hell- a mythos that has continued to grow over the years.
We recently chatted exclusively with Slash during the 2013 San Diego Comic-Con to hear more on his experiences making the film, what fans can expect and much more. Read on for the latest on Nothing Left to Fear; the religious horror tale arrives in limited theaters on October 4th and then will head to Blu-ray, DVD and VOD on October 8th.
Dread Central: I’ve been hearing out this project for the last year now and am really excited to get to chat with you about it now- how great does it feel to finally be getting closer to the finish line and to be bringing it to Comic-Con as well?
Slash: I’m really excited about it; it’s a great little movie. I first got into doing this movie because it was this little, grass-roots project and it kind of reminded me of back when I was putting my first band together. We were really lucky on this movie to have had all the right, passionate people involved; it took a lot of time and there were a lot of obstacles along the way but we made it happen. Working on this movie really gave me a great sense of achievement too because it’s not like I’ve ever done anything like this before. I started on Nothing Left to Lose from the bottom up- it was definitely nothing like making a record at all.
Dread Central: Between your cast and some of the other companies attached to Nothing Left to Fear, it seems like you had a lot talent on this project. Because you guys did go the independent route, was that another challenge for you guys when you were putting the project together initially?
Slash: Well, because we were making a low-budget horror movie, it wasn’t like people we coming out of the woodwork initially. I do think my ‘brand’ or whatever you want to call it really helped us with the director and the cast and I think Anchor Bay Entertainment’s involvement has been really invaluable too. And we were really, really lucky to get Spectral Motion involved because they are one of the best companies out there, period.
How we were able to work with Spectral on Nothing Left to Fear ended up being something of a happy coincidence; I happened to be friends with Joey Arrosco who worked on the dinosaurs for Jurassic Park and used to work for Stan Winston too. I had set a meeting up at Spectral early on and when I walked in there, Joey was standing right there. I had no idea he had moved over to Spectral and everything worked out from there. They did a great job with our practical effects- they look so much bigger than what our budget was and that was all Spectral.
Dread Central: Nothing Left to Fear stars by far one of my favorite character actors of all time- Clancy Brown. Were you a huge fan of his as well?
Slash: I was! Everything he’s been in over the years has been just great and he’s just so great at hitting all these right notes with a quiet subtlety that you just don’t see very often. We had a couple of other people come in and read for the part but I was never sold on any of them; I just knew it had to be Clancy for this role. He plays this really complicated priest- he’s benevolent but he’s also responsible for finding a yearly sacrifice for the demon that’s been commanding his quiet town and that comes with an emotional and mental price tag attached to it. The choices his character has had to make over the years have never been easy.
Dread Central: Because this is a story based on the real religious-based folklore of this small town, had you guys thought about shooting in that area at all?
Slash: I think we considered it for like a moment but then we realized that the town didn’t really want us there and they really weren’t happy that Hollywood was ‘sensationalizing’ their town so we shot in Louisiana which worked out for the best. We had so many resources there available so I think it worked out for the best this way.
Dread Central: I’ve read before that you’re a huge horror fan; is moving on to producing horror movies something you had always thought about then?
Slash: Oh yeah- my mom and dad raised me on H.G. Wells, Poe and all those classic films and stories. I’ve always been a fan and I think that being a part of this movie now and developing other horror projects allows me to bring that fan sensibility to the table. I just want to make movies that I’d want to see as a fan and Nothing Left to Fear is a movie I’d be excited for if I was only coming at it as a fan. It’s nice to feel so much passion about a completely new chapter in my career- you don’t get these kinds of opportunities very often.
Nothing Left to Fear is the first feature from the horror shingle launched by iconic rocker Slash (Guns N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver) and Academy-Award winning producer Michael Williams and Rob Eric (Transsiberian, Session 9, The Fog of War). At the directing helm is Gore Verbinski protégé Anthony Leonardi III, who has worked alongside Verbinski on such films as Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Rango, and The Lone Ranger. Leonardi has also worked as a creature designer on many films, including Francis Lawrence’s Constantine and 47 Ronin.
Nothing Left to Fear is the tale of a family whose journey towards a better life in a small town is savagely derailed by a charismatic but emotionally conflicted man of the cloth. The movie is based on the actual town of Stull, Kansas, which is surrounded by Internet folklore proclaiming the town to be one of the seven gateways to Hell.
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