Chad Ferrin Interview

Chad Ferrin made his first movie ‘Unspeakable’ a decade ago. Since then he’s been working hard to create a name for himself and with his fourth directorial effort ‘Someone’s Knocking At The Door‘ in the bag and due for release in the US on the 25th of May, he’s certainly doing just that. Gorepress was lucky enough to catch up with him for an email interview recently; here’s what he had to say.

GP : You seemed to break into the industry at a relatively young age and went from Production Assistant to Producer in a short space of time. What do you attribute that to?

CF : Passion. When I was 8 years old my father took me to see Quest For Fire and its graphic images of SEX and VIOLENCE were seared into my young brain, from that moment on, I knew what I wanted to do. I sold my house to make Unspeakable, and then my 1968 ½ Ford Mustang to fund The Ghouls. I’ll sell my organs next if I have to.

Gorepress are big fans of the Troma ‘grass-roots, anything-goes’ way of filmmaking. Were you a fan of Lloyd Kaufman’s ideologies before you became involved with Troma?

Not really. I mean, I’m all for ‘grass roots, anything goes’ but to be honest, I don’t think much of Lloyd Kaufman.

And how did your affiliation with them come about?

I had sent Troma a copy of Unspeakable and they liked and picked it up. Now, ten years later, I still have not seen a dime from them. At this point I wish they would just give me my film back. Maybe we can start a petition?

Chad Ferrin

You seem like a director that has veered away from the mainstream. Was it a conscious choice or an organic process?

Organic, I do everything from my gut. From writing, placing the camera, cutting, I go with what feels right at the moment.

You’ve taken on a huge number of different roles behind the camera. Was it mostly circumstantial or do you just enjoy adding new strings to your proverbial bow?

It’s both. I’ve had to work every job and I’ve enjoyed those experiences and the knowledge that they have given me. It’s made me unafraid of the machine.

You’ve repeatedly worked with ‘Deadgirl’ scribe Trent Haaga, does that working relationship stem from your time with Troma?

Come to think of it, Trent was the one who championed Unspeakable to Lloyd…that son of a bitch!

And do you have any plans to continue working together?

Not now after you reminded me that it’s all his damn fault.

Recently, at Easter, I noticed that there was a distinct lack of seasonal horror movies, only to stumble upon ‘Easter Bunny, Kill Kill!‘ Did you look for a gap in the market or did the murderous easter bunny concept come first?

Easter Bunny, Kill! Kill!
The director of Christmas Evil had told me a story of how he turned down an Easter themed horror film in the 1980’s. It got me thinking and Easter Bunny, Kill! Kill! was born. And, it actually just premiered on cable VOD and will hit DVD June 1st from Breaking Glass Pictures. I am very proud and excited to have it hopping out to the world.

Your movies have already garnered cult status. Is the potential audience a big factor when you’re making films or do you just make movies that you would want to watch?

It all starts with what I would want to watch, but I do have to restrain myself at times because some of my ideas actually frighten me and ultimately, I do want my work to reach the widest possible audience.

Your latest directorial outing is on grindhouse homage ‘Someone’s Knocking At The Door‘. How did it all come about?

Out of the blue, I received an e-mail from producer Roham Ghodsi asking for my help selling a film he had just completed. I asked “why me?”. He said he had seen The Ghouls and was impressed not only in the film but the fact that it’s available all over the world. So, we set up a meeting, and he flew to LA from Australia the next week. We spent 3 hours smoking cigarettes, talking cinema and then suddenly he asked if I’d be interested in directing a script he had written. Without hesitation, I said “Yes”. He sent me the script for Someone’s Knocking At The Door and with his blessing I started a re-write on it. I worked out a story where this drug these kids take opens a door to some sort of Hell, unleashing all sorts of horrors. I sent the script to Noah Segan and we wound up fleshing out the more existential elements. One month later we were shooting. Of course, then there are the stories of losing almost $15k to currency conversion and having to go to illicit measures to make up that end of the budget… Let us just say the cash arrived in a paper sack. Thank heavens for Rich Wolff and Richard Ross of Breaking Glass Pictures for having the guts to put out the film and in a sense save my life… or at least my legs.

Are there any specific films that inspired you with regard to visual style, for this particular project?

Someone’s Knocking At The Door
If Dario Argento fucked Russ Meyer while Sam Fuller watched, Someone’s Knocking At The Door would be the stain left on the sheets.

Rumour has it that before a screening of SKATD, Gorepress favourite ‘Mark Macready & The Archangel Murders’ was shown. Did you hand-pick it?

No, I had no input on that.

And what are some of your favourite short horror movies?

Luis Buñuel’s Un Chien Andalou, Robert Enrico’s La Rivière Du Hibou and every single episode of Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone

Finally, what does the future hold for you? Do you have any other projects on the horizon that you can mention?

Well, my next project is again with Roham and is called Dances With Werewolves. The film is set in the aftermath of the Civil War, centring on Confederate soldiers having escaped a Union prison camp, only to be hunted by Native American shape-shifting werewolves. With a little luck, we’ll have it rolling at the end of the year.

And when can the UK look forward to the release of SKATD?

We are working on that as we speak, and any help we can get from our UK fans would be greatly appreciated. Please write to your favourite horror distributor and tell them you want to see it!

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