For horror fans who grew up during the 80's, which were without a doubt the Golden Era of the slasher film, the recent trends in the horror genre have been all but disappointing. Sure, paranormal films are fine. Found footage films can be terrifying, when done correctly. Torture porn is sometimes an entertaining escape. And psychological horror is good brain exercise. However, for these fans, the yearning for the simpler days of horror often forces a revisiting of The Slumber Party Massacre, Slaughter High, The Mutilator, or The Dorm That Dripped Blood. For many, these films are the paramount examples of why they love horror in the first place: simple plots that focus on one thing: stalking and slashing. True fans know that these films did not get bogged down with details. Plot wasn't a priority. Being realistic wasn't a priority. And this was perfectly fine for fans.
So, after being subjected to the "new" trends in horror for the last several years, it is quite the cause for celebration when a film comes along that so perfectly and effectively captures the spirit of these long ago slasher gems from the 80's. There have been a few: Steven Mena's 2004 homage Malevolence is a great example. But more recently--just this year in fact---another great throwback to 80's slasher films was released. Complete with a group of unsuspecting teens, a legendary killer who wears a distinctive mask, ample chase scenes, and of course, tons of blood and guts, Beware succeeds wonderfully in transporting genre fans back to the good ol' days of simple horror.
Director Jason Daly was kind enough to chat with us about the film. Read below for our interview with this talented director who we are excited to see more from!
First, thank you for taking the time to chat with us. For horror fans who may be unfamiliar with you, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I like horror movies! Bada Boom! Bada Bing!
How did Beware come about? Any particular inspiration?
Only the obvious inspirations, Slashers of the late 70's early 80's. Shawn and I both have so many great memories of watching those movies growing up, they are so fun. We wanted to have a go at doing what we love and in a genre we love.
Speaking of inspiration, Shane, Beware's masked psychopath, is a paramount example of a classic slasher film killer. How was his character developed and what were you attempting to bring to the genre with the character?
The character was based off a random ghost story I was told as a child. A ghost who was dragging a chain and you could hear the sounds of the dragging chains when he was coming for you. That always stuck with me as a kid growing up, so I created this character Shane who had chains on his wrists and you could hear him stalking you. Then we had to create his back story and the movie grew from there. As far as bringing something to the genre, we just wanted to let the film decide that. We love Shane and understand that the killer is is usually the main draw of these types of movies but we wanted the movie to be just as important and not center the movie on him and if he rises above then that's awesome...and that is up to the fans.
What were some of the most difficult aspects of filming Beware?
We dealt with all the issues most indie filmmakers deal with, but its how you handle those issues is what makes a good team and we had a pretty good team.
For true horror fans, it is obvious that Beware is a true homage to the golden age of the slasher ere. It does contain its fair share of slasher cliches. Were you afraid that utilizing these cliches would affect how some view the film?
Not really. We knew what we were doing. We weren't trying to reinvent the wheel or anything. We just wanted to go back to a time when horror was simple. Make our movie the best we could and hopefully horror fans would see that we put our hearts into it.
The cast is predominately Hispanic, which is rare for the slasher genre and one of the unique elements to the film. Was this done intentionally? How did you go about assembling the cast?
In the very beginning we were told it might have to be shot in Spanish so we started to think of the characters as Hispanic. Once we started visualizing the characters we fell in love with them and and would never change them even if the movie was shot in English. Then we were told it did have to be shot in Spanish so we cast bilingual actors and actresses. Then weeks before filming we were given the Okay to shoot in English, the only catch was, we had to do both, and shoot both languages on the same shooting schedule. So it was nuts and I give all the credit to the cast for being able to pull that off.
Looking back now at the finished product, is there anything you would change about the film if you could?
No, I don't look at the movie that way at all. Of course its not perfect by any means, but when you know you did the best you could with your given situation then there is nothing to feel bad about. Just have to look at our flaws and keep trying to make things better for the next go around.
Why should horror fans see Beware?
Why not? If you like Indie Horror gives us a shot. And oh yeah, Hot Girls and Blood :)
So, can we expect a sequel? If so, what can we expect from it?
Well its written, we are just waiting for things to fall in place and if we are lucky enough to do one, the fans can expect a THRILL RIDE!
Any final comments?
Thank you to the fans, hearing from you has been great and we cant stress enough how your support is greatly appreciated! Even anyone who has just purchased or rented the movie we appreciate you giving us a chance to entertain and for supporting Indie Horror.
If you haven't seen the movie yet you can find out all about it at www.bewarethemovie.com and its will start airing on Showtime and The Movie Channel in March.