It’s a rainy, chilly, Sunday afternoon in late March. But if the bad weather has kept anyone away from the Horror Hound Weekend convention in Indianapolis, Indiana, you certainly can’t tell. The hotel parking lot is filled almost to capacity and a steady stream of fans dressed in costumes or just in the tradition black attire of horror conventions, move through the building. Stars such as Elvira and George Romero headline this year’s event and their lines stretch far out into the hallways.
However, the big name stars aren’t the only ones drawing interest. Women of Horror featured actress Michelle Shields and indie horror favorite Jim O’Rear sit together at a table selling photos and DVDs. They aren’t just at any table though. They are sitting with writer/director Cameron J. Scott at his booth for his new feature film: POST MORTEM AMERICA: 2021. Shields and O’Rear are both featured in the film and they are doing there best to make sure that everyone at the convention stops by to check out the trailer and learn more about it.
Scott is also doing his part as he moves around the crowd near the table. He talks to everyone he sees, moving from person to person like a manic hummingbird, the filmmaker’s enthusiasm for the project is down right contagious. Now B-Movie Man Nic Brown has caught bug too as he manages to corner the energetic director for a little pre-mortem information about a film that has a lot of people in the indie community talking.
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Nic- Thanks for taking a few minutes to talk with me today Cameron. Can you tell us a little bit about what’s brought you here to the Horror Hound Weekend in Indianapolis?
Cameron- No problem! I’m the writer/producer/director of POST MORTEM AMERICA 2021.
Nic- So what is POST MORTEM AMERICA 2021?
Cameron- (laughing) Well, it’s a weird hybrid film. I think Jim O’Rear, who plays the lead villain in my film, said it best: “If Quentin Tarentino was going to do a zombie film, it would turn out like this!”. It’s shot in black and white. It’s a revenge thriller with a little bit of western flair. Oh, and lots it has lots of Zombies in it!
I wanted to prove by making my first feature length film that you can make a film that successfully crosses genres. I love westerns, I love revenge thrillers and I love zombies. So why not combine all three into one epic film?
Nic- I’ve seen some of your production stills and it looks like you’ve got some really good locations. Where is the film being shot?
Cameron- We’re doing a lot of the production in northern Indiana, we’re shooting in a number of different small towns. We’ve also had a lot of good fortune with our locations. We’ve shot in old warehouses and dilapidated, should be condemned, buildings. We got to shoot in the historic Ritz Theatre in Rensselaer, Indiana. It’s a beautiful theatre that was built, I believe, in 1928 and has been recently remodeled. We also have done a lot of work in little ghost towns and half dead towns around Indiana so we can get that “post apocalyptic look on a shoe-string, independent production, budget. I mean we don’t want to have a production designer spending thousands of dollars to get the look you need, especially when it’s all around you.
Nic- I know you sad it was a low budget film, but you seem to have assembled quite a cast, even with your financial constraints.
Cameron- You’re right! Staring in the film we’ve got Linnea Quigley, she plays the female lead Lucile. Jim O’Rear plays Severen, her evil lead counter part. We also have Monique Dupree, we also have the lovely Michelle Shields (Cameron gestures to the POST MORTEM AMERICA booth where Michelle is signing autographs for fans). We have Sarah Swofford, she’s another up -and-coming scream queen. There’s Melanie Robel who’s out of Florida. There’s Joel Wyncoop the “king of the B movies. We’ve also got “Chainsaw Sally” April Burril, Oh, and Lloyd Kaufman from Troma films is even going to make a cameo in it! I’m still trying to get a few of the last roles done, including someone I also have in mind to play this kind of quirky narrator, so there will be more.
Nic- Wow! That is quite a line-up! So when do you expect the film to be finished and ready to show?
Cameron- I’m aiming to do the final shoots during the last week in May and the first week in June. That’s actually part of the reason we’re here. We’re at Horror Hound Weekend to raise awareness of the film and to raise a little bit of money to help finish the film. We have an online fundraiser we’re doing called Kick-Starter and it’s helping us raise the last couple of thousand dollars we need to finish the movie. We’ve actually done really well here, we haven’t hit are mark yet, but we’re really close. I think overall we’ve done a good job getting the fund raiser off the ground and soon we’ll be done with production and it can go into post. We intend to have all the editing and post production done in Mid-June and I’m planning on an October release, just in time for a Halloween weekend premier.
Nic- So if someone wanted to learn more about POST MORTEM AMERICA 2021, is there anywhere on the web they can go?
Cameron- I am on Facebook, look for Cameron J. Scott, and we’ve just started a fan page for the film as well. We’ve also got two myspace pages. There’s www.myspace.com/livingdeadheathen that’s my personal page and there’s also www.myspace.com/postmortemamerica2021. I’m also working on setting up the official website for the film, but I was kind of waiting to get Horror Hound out of the way. It took a lot to get us all here (he gestures to the table where a number of cast members are signing photos and talking to fans) and to organize it and get it all done. Hopefully very soon we’ll have the official site ready.
Nic- As a filmmaker, what do you think is your biggest challenge?
Cameron- Being prepared. After the first shoot I learned that you can never be too prepared or too organized. I also learned something important: a lot of people will tell you that you need a bigger camera, a bigger cast, a bigger budget, a bigger this or a bigger that. Well bigger is not always better. Ultimately what you need is to ready, to be organized and most of all to have a good script. A good script is the beginning of everything.
Another thing is being ready to adapt. You know you get rained out on a shoot day or someone doesn’t show up or something breaks, the list goes on and on and on a low budget picture you can’t just say “OK let’s throw a lot of money at this problem and make it go away”. Our budget is well under $20,000 so you have to make every penny and every minute count.
Nic- What about distribution for the film? Have you already got anything lined up for that?
Cameron- You know I honestly haven’t thought a lot about that right now. I want to release it totally independently at first so I can take it around to conventions and film festivals for the first year and just release it myself independently. Then if a deal comes along, that’s great, but I’m not worrying about that. I want to get it out there, let people see it, hopefully win some awards and get some good word of mouth.
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