In preparation for their upcoming film "The Houses October Built" the creators Bobby Roe (writer, director, actor) and Zack Andrews (writer, producer, actor) took some time to talk with me and answer some questions about the movie. They had a lot of great insight into the film and you can read it here while you wait for the film to come out.
Where did you come up with the concept for this film?
BR: It came from wanting to give the horror community something different. There’s actually never been a Halloween haunted house movie. And with 30 million people going each year, it’s an untapped fan base that deserves a cinematic experience.
ZA: And shooting on million dollars sets for free gave us the opportunity to make a movie that was bigger than just 5 friends go into the woods with a camera.
What made you decide to use the "found footage" format as opposed to a more traditional filming style?
BR: We wanted you to be able to experience the haunts with us. And POV was the only way that was possible.
Were real haunted attractions used in the film or was it sets made specifically for the shoot.
BR: They were all real. You can smell a set a mile away. Look at a big movie like Batman and compare the Burton and Nolan films. 89’ Gotham was a giant constructed set and feels fake, but Nolan shot in the heart of Chicago and it gives Gotham City life. Hopefully we are doing that on a obviously much smaller scale.
How many actors outside of the main cast were real scare actors from haunts.
ZA: We wanted an authenticity that only comes from going to real haunts and using real scare actors. That goes hand in hand with Bobby’s answer to your question about the filming style. When Steven Schneider came aboard, his biggest compliment of the film is he said “this is actually real. Until it isn’t. Except I don’t know when that is.”
Were any of the interviews featured in the film with people who work haunts or were they actors.
BR: Also, all real. You can’t write the things that came out of their mouths.
Who designed the appearance of some of the more significant "villains" like the creepy little girl?
ZA: Wish we could take credit, but each individual haunt has their FX people and we were fortunate to use them and have a wide array of characters.
What do you feel sets this film apart from others in the genre?
BR: If you are going to use “found footage” or “pov” you better have a real reason. And we feel we do because of the realism. Most of these movies can’t say that.
ZA: We also have a subject matter that already has a huge following… and it’s a holiday movie everyone! There are a lot of horror movies that everyone watches in October, but not that many that are specifically celebrating Halloween.
What was your favorite part of making this movie?
BR: The comradery with cast and crew, we had a great time and felt like kids again at these places.
ZA: Agree with Bobby. But also making a movie completely from start to finish. Being able to work with the studio guys, understanding their point of view. Having Steven Schneider as a producing partner and gaining experience from him. Handling all the post production and delivery. It’s been an invaluable education that will serve us forever.
What was the biggest challenge during the filming?
BR: Shooting while the haunts were open. It’s tough when you shoot a seasonal movie, you can’t be wrong because you can’t reshoot and recreate that Halloween environment.
Is there anything else in particular you want people to know about this movie?
ZA: I think the best way to experience it is to make it an event. Get a group of friends, check it out in theaters or get it at home on the many platforms, and then go support your local haunted house. Live out what we did right after you watch. You can’t do that with most movies.
I had a blast doing this interview and i hope you enjoyed reading it!
The Houses October Built will be in theaters, VOD and itunes October 10th.
Watch the trailer here if you haven't had a chance yet.