Maddie Deering—WiHM Interview

Women in Horror Month is a great way to showcase our talented badass ladies in horror. I had the privilege to interview Maddie Deering— a talented writer, producer and actress.  Check out her latest film Spirit Animal and see what she has in store for us in the next year! 


Sarah Gregory:
 

  • What inspired you to get into the industry, mainly in horror?

Maddie Deering: 

  • Ever since I was young, I loved film. I have so many memories of the video store, Video World, which was also my first job. My family used to always go and rent movies on Wacky Wednesday, where rentals were cheap. But it was at a video store, That Tape Place, where I got into weirder horror movies, Troma movies were an inspiration. For a 7th grade birthday party we rented Killer Nerd, and it was shot on video. It was cheap, it was hilarious, and I loved it. And that was the moment I said to my friends, “Hey, we can make movies!” And It was then I learned you didn’t need a lot of money to make a film, just a lot of passion and love for the genre.

SG: 

  • Who/ what are your inspirations for filmmaking?

MD: 

  • Wes Craven and Lloyd Kaufman are two of my biggest inspirations. Wes Craven had so many amazing creative ideas, and I love almost everything he did. Like, Freddy Krueger wasn’t just a killer like Michael Myers or Jason Voorhees, he had personality and the way those movies were made was brilliant. And he didn’t just launch one horror franchise, he directed Scream too. I love almost all of his works. And Lloyd Kaufman made all these movies with love and heart for little money, and has been doing it for so long. I get a lot of my humor from movies like The Toxic Avenger, Class of Nuke Em High, and Terror Firmer. I am also heavily inspired by David Lynch and his style.

SG:

  • What was your inspiration for Spirit animal?

MD:

  • Spirit Animal has been one hell of a journey to come onto screen. About 2 years ago, a friend and I were developing a slasher movie about a half shark/half man Shark God that stalks a group of kids who are camping. We didn’t have the budget to make a cool looking Shark-Man, so I decided to write a short film that tied in, Bathtub Shark Attack. That never happened either, and my actors dropped out except one. So I said, let’s just make a feature and shoot it on VHS (I always wanted to shoot a feature on VHS, I love the look!). So I feel Spirit Animal is a little bit of both those movies, and it holds on it’s own. I think the humor and one liners (as well as the killer’s voice) was influenced by the Nail Gun Massacre. Other inspirations include movies like Sleepaway Camp and Friday the 13th as well as shot on video horror movies like Video Violence and Cannibal Campout. Popcorn was really the movie that made me want to do a gimmick and Smell-o-vision was definitely the best option for this movie. I think that little bit of extra effort and interactive fun brings this movie to a whole new level. Of course, John Waters did it first with Polyester!

SG:

  • Do you have any advice for anyone, women in particular who are getting into this business, with the horror genre?

MD:

  • Just do it! If you want to make a movie, get some friends together on the weekend and make a movie for fun. The technology to make a movie is everywhere. Even if it’s just a silly short with your friends. It is an amazing feeling to create. Just never stop trying. Spirit Animal is my fist feature and I paid out of pocket for all the props and everything. You can easily make a movie on no money if you have friends to do it with who are dedicated. That’s what we did, I casted my friends, and we went for it. And we are almost finished now which is an amazing feeling. The horror community is full of so many amazing people, and it is an amazing time to be a horror fan. With Facebook, it is so easy to meet other like minded folks. So my advice, if you wanna do it, DO IT!

SG:

  • How did your love for this genre come about?

MD:

  • For Easter one year when I was young, my parents got me a Nightmare on Elm Street on VHS. I have been in love ever since. Of course, I saw bits and pieces of those movies among others on TV, but that was the start. Horror is an escape from every day life and it is such a fun genre with so much creativity and ideas. There’s so many different sub genres, and so many talented folks behind the scenes. I love everything about horror movies, I always have and I always will. Horror movies helped me through some tough times!

SG:

  • What new projects can we expect from you this year?


MD:

  • This year you will probably just see Spirit Animal, haha. We have a premiere coming up on March 13th, and a physical release in July *fingers crossed*. I have a script entitled Alan which is a bit of a twisted love story that’s inspired by films like Silent Night, Deadly Night, Taxi Driver, and Psycho. It’s my passion project and I would love to be shooting that a year or so from now. We also are working on finishing some older projects, including the first movie I ever made which is about torturing toys, the other being a film my cinematographer Joseph Russio made titled Beyond Dark Dreams. I hope to put these projects together this year and shoot Alan next year! Here is hoping people enjoy Spirit Animal and that we can make more. I have a idea for a trilogy!

Keep an eye out on Maddie this year and follow the page below for Spirit Animal and get all the latest updates! ⬇️⬇️

Spirit Animal

 

Posted by Sarah Gregory

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