Interview: Writer/Director and Star of HOAX Imagine Meeting an Actual Sasquatch

The very first article I ever wrote for Dread Central (way back in May 2015) was a list of the 10 best Bigfoot movies of the 21st Century.

Related Article: Top 10 Bigfoot Movies of the 21st Century

See, as a Northern California boy, Bigfoot (aka Sasquatch) is kind of like my area’s official monster—and I always root for the home team. So, when I heard that Dread Presents (the horror distribution arm of our parent company, Epic Pictures) was releasing a new horror movie where Bigfoot plays a prominent role, I was dying to check it out—and Hoax did not disappoint!

Now available on VOD and Blu-ray/DVD, Hoax would definitely make my list of Best Bigfoot Movies if I were to re-write it today. It’s got all of the established Sasquatch horror troupes fans of the subgenre love, but Hoax also takes some surprising twists and turns, making it a very unique beast. Give the film’s trailer and synopsis a look-see below, followed by our exclusive interview with Hoax writer/director Matt Allen and star Hutch Dano.

An investigative team travels deep into the remote Colorado wilderness after a group of young campers are viciously murdered by what may be Bigfoot.

Dread Central: Matt, what made you want to make a movie about Bigfoot?

Matt Allen: I wanted to make something that was an homage to all the films I loved growing up. It all started one night when I couldn’t sleep so I watched a documentary on Bigfoot. It posed some great questions that started me thinking and everything went from there.

DC: Matt, do you believe in Bigfoot?

MA: I don’t really lean one way or another, but one of the researchers I studied said something I really liked: “I find a world with Bigfoot much more interesting than one without.” I totally subscribe to that statement as well.

DC: How about you, Hutch: Do you believe in Bigfoot?

Hutch Dano: You know, I really don’t know. I’m kind of 50/50. I’ve looked at the footage obviously. I just don’t know for sure. If someone forced me to make a decision on whether Bigfoot is real or fake, I just don’t think I could give a definitive answer.

DC: Right on; I like how you guys are both keeping an opened mind about it. Hutch, tell us a bit about your character in Hoax.

HD: Well, Justin Johnson is a character I loved playing. He likes to use humor for everything, even in situations when they’re in danger. But I think that’s how he copes in the situations he’s been dealt. And that was so much fun to play, because I got to say some outrageous stuff. I’ve never played the punchline guy before, so that was really fun.

DC: I’ve seen Hoax and, without giving anything away, it certainly differentiates itself from most Bigfoot movies. I want to hear from each of you how you would describe the film in order to convince potential moviegoers that they’re in for something truly unexpected.

MA: It’s a sloppy love letter to the genre and we really just tried to go through all the different eras and great moments in horror in a tasteful way. And I hope people who see it will agree that Hoax has one of the most shocking endings of any horror movie in recent years.

HD: First off, I would mention the cast because I don’t think there’s been such a great ensemble of actors who had been in phenomenal genre films all at once. I think that’s a testament to the script and how Matt was able to get everyone together. You’ve got all of these people and Matt is such a fan of the genre and he really respects it. It’s a wonderful homage but it’s also something very original. He’s got such a love for the genre. I can’t imagine a Bigfoot movie being done better, personally.

DC: Matt: It’s extremely difficult to do a deep-dive without giving anything away, but can you tell me what films inspired you to make Hoax?

MA: I think the films that have the most DNA in Hoax are The Fog and (clearly) Friday the 13th—and Texas Chainsaw Massacre. We through in some Predator and Quarantine and Blair Witch—and even Scream. I wanted to hit on a bunch of seminal films and find a way to tie them into one story.

DC: Thematically, Hoax seems to be about taking unreasonable risks in the pursuit of fame and fortune; in fact, there are very few characters who actually seem to care about Bigfoot beyond a means to an end. Do you think there are people in the entertainment industry who are this self-centered and misguided?

MA: One of the things we played with was showing people on different sides of the camera and how being on one side of the camera or the other changes you. Seeking fame or trying to regain past notoriety doesn’t always make us the best people.

HD: I love the fact that there was that aspect in the film. Fame is something that’s important to actors and filmmakers, some more than others. But the film shows that it’s not really worth it if you’re going to put yourself in harm’s way. I like how Hoax conveys that.

DC: I want each of you to close your eyes. Now, imagine you’re on a nice peaceful hike through the woods of the Pacific Northwest. You hear a rustling on the path ahead of you and, before you realize it, you find yourself face to face with an actual Sasquatch! What do you do?

MA: Well I think I would freeze and then… that’s one of those questions you don’t know the answer to until it happens, but I hope I’d be something of a Sasquatch whisperer. I’d say something like, “Hey buddy… How’s it going?”

HD: Well if I come face to face with an actual Sasquatch, I’m running. I’ll think about what I could have done differently after I’m about a mile away!

DC: Is there anything else about Hoax you want to tell our readers before I let you go?

HD: Matt is a brilliant filmmaker and he’s one of the best directors I’ve ever worked with. It was such an honor to work on the film and to be part of such an amazing cast. I just hope everyone enjoys it as much as I enjoyed being in it.

You can pick up your copy of Hoax now, HERE.

Are you a fan of Bigfoot horror movies? Have you seen Hoax or are you excited to check it out? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram! You can also carry on the convo with me personally on Twitter @josh_millican.



Sign up for The Harbinger a Dread Central Newsletter