Tag Archive | "The Hills Have Eyes"

ICON VS. ICON PRESENTS: Acid Pop Cult Podcast – Episode 156: Wes Craven Retrospective

ICON VS. ICON PRESENTS: Acid Pop Cult Podcast – Episode 156: Wes Craven Retrospective

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This week on the Acid Pop Cult Podcast, Jeremy and Jason celebrate the life and work of the late Wes Craven. The duo discuss their introductions to his work, the impact it had them fans as film fans and how his work impacted the horror genre as a whole. Next, Jeremy unveils his list of the Top 5 underrated films by the Master of Horror. They wrap the episode up with their Picks of The Week in the form of the new ‘Mad Max’ video game and Iron Maiden’s new album, “The Book of Souls.” (Read the album review here) It is a robust and full bodied episode; best described as easily drinkable. Download, listen and spread the word!

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Laura Catalina Ortiz Dishes On Adam Green’s Horror/Comedy Sitcom “Holliston”

Laura Catalina Ortiz Dishes On Adam Green’s Horror/Comedy Sitcom “Holliston”

Laura Catalina Ortiz’s career in the entertainment industry started humbly. Who knew that young girl from Bogota, Columbia with aspirations of becoming an actress would move to California and eventually star in a T-Mobile commercial propelling her career to unexpected heights? Armed with a resume that includes portraying Ruby in Alexandre Aja’s remake of Wes Craven’s “The Hills Have Eyes,” Laura joined forces with friends Adam Green and Joe Lynch to bring the horror/comedy sitcom “Holliston” to life on television screens across America. With a cast that includes Green and Lynch, as well as Oderus Urungus of Gwar and Dee Snider of Twisted Sister, Laura definitely has stories to tell. Steve Johnson of Icon vs. Icon recently sat down with Laura to discuss her beginnings in the entertainment industry, her influences, her love of the horror genre, and, of course, all things “Holliston.”

Where did you grow up and when did you realize you wanted to pursue a career in the entertainment industry?

Originally I was born in Bogota, Columbia. I was there until I was 8. Then my mom’s job brought us to Rochester, Minnesota. So I grew up in the mid-west. The same kind of weather we are having right now, which is awesome. So yeah, I was pretty much a mid-west kid. My parents moved to Florida when I was 16. I knew that I wanted to move to either New York or L.A. to pursue acting. I was always pushing my parents to do that. I thought I could graduate early in Florida, so I did that. Then I got a full-time job and saved up a few thousand dollars. Then I moved out here when I was almost 18. It all sort of went from there.

Laura Catalina Ortiz

What influences helped shape you, the actress we know today?

Oh my goodness! Definitely everyone I’ve worked with helped me grow. Definitely the horror world. That has affected my career in a really positive way. The first thing I ever shot was “The Hills Have Eyes.” I still keep in touch with almost everyone from that movie. From that kind of people … that’s how I met Adam Green from the show that I am doing now. Joe Lynch. James Gunn. Pretty much anyone in horror. They have become such good friends outside of work. They have definitely shaped who I am. I’m really lucky to have done a little bit of everything. Voice-over, comedy, commercials, and movies. My constants have always been the horror crowd, which I’m really happy with.

Speaking of horror films, do you have a favorite?

Oh my goodness! You know what? I’m a huge fan of the Stephen King TV movie “It.”

Yeah! It’s awesome!

I saw it when I was really little. I remember watching it on TV. I wasn’t very old when I first saw it. That’s the one movie that always gets me that I thoroughly enjoy horror-wise. I mean I enjoy a lot of them, but that one holds a special place in my heart.

You mentioned your work on motion pictures and television series. Is there a format you prefer?

A part of me likes movies a little bit more, but I don’t know if I’ve had a project that I haven’t had a great time on. They’re all so different. It’s great. I always leave with a new family from every show and project I’ve done, so I can’t say I prefer one over the other.

'Holliston'

What can you tell us about Adam Green’s upcoming television series “Holliston” and your character Laura?

It’s a sitcom. It’s a comedy with a little bit of horror elements, which is why it’s on Fearnet. I’m nervous because Adam Green is sitting right behind me! [laughs] It’s about two guys that live on the east coast in the small town of Holliston. They are desperate to get out of town and make it. They just want to be horror movie filmmakers. It’s about that time in your life when it seems like everything should be going right, but it’s not. It has a lot of genre things in it, but it also has a lot of heart. I was talking about it yesterday, it’s a boys show and a girls show for so many different reasons. There’s so much heart and sensitivity. There’s blood and guts for the boys. There’s also blood and guts for girls. It’s got heart, sensitivity, romance and friendship.

Did you have any input into your character or was it laid out for you in the script?

Adam does such a really great job. We’ve all been really good friends for a while now. He wrote the characters specifically for us. At least for me, she definitely is a lot of who I was. It was definitely all his writing. We rehearsed so much that when we got there he really trusted us with the choices that we made. So we got to play around. A lot of ourselves and our own personalities are in our characters. I’ve said before that a lot of people think we are playing lesser versions of ourselves, but in my case I think I’m playing a better version of myself because I paint on the show. [laughs]

What was the biggest challenge in bringing the character from script to screen?

I just wanted to make the writer and director proud and those around me proud. That in itself is a challenge. To try and live up to them. The rehearsals really helped a lot. The fact that Adam was so good at writing. It was challenging in that we didn’t have that much time. We didn’t have a lot of things, but we made it work. Adam and Joe have been so great. It didn’t really feel like work. It felt like playing with friends. [laughs]

Adam not only directs the show, but acts in it as well. Was it difficult to adjust to Adam the director and Adam the actor?

No it wasn’t. He did everything. He was the director, the producer, actor. He was so easy. He trusted us so much. His crew … he uses the same crew for everything. It’s like a family. Everyone there from the camera crew to the actors were having such a good time. We have all at some point or another have worked together.

Laura Catalina Ortiz

Dee Snider and Oderus Urungus of GWAR are on the show. Tell us a little about what it was like working alongside those guys.

They were so much fun. Oderus is really nice and so sweet. He didn’t have very much time to get through all of his stuff during the show, but he was so professional. His costume smelled kind of bad. [laughs] When he was done shooting … He’s this big rock and roll guy. I was waiting for this big rock and roll exit. Like something dramatic. He left us the sweetest drawing saying thank you and what a great time he had. [laughs]

That’s funny.

Yeah! I was waiting for something very dramatic, but that drawing was so sweet. It was a big thank you from Oderus to all of us.

I wouldn’t expect that. It seems kind of out of place. I would expect something totally different!

Yeah!

I understand you filmed six episodes of the show. Can we expect more episodes in the future?

We sure hope so! I’m being optimistic, but I don’t see this not keeping on going. If I could do this for 10 years with these people I would feel very happy and fulfilled.

You guys are currently on the road promoting the show. What has that experience been like for you and what type of response are you getting?

It has been so amazing! It’s awesome! We came in Tuesday and we had a screening that day. Our flight kept getting delayed. We were supposed to get here with enough time to get off the plane and get to the screening. We ended up being two hours late to the screening because of the flight getting delayed and cancelled. So many things happened. People stayed. We played it for this crowd that had been waiting for a few hours. They loved it! They laughed! Really, the most special part of it all was yesterday we screened it in Holliston. We weren’t sure who was going to come. We didn’t know what to expect, but we had standing room only that night. We got a standing ovation. We played the pilot episode and episode three. We’ve watched the show and there are parts that we think are so funny, but we don’t know if they’re funny because we are friends and we have the same sense of humor. Hearing these people laugh at things that we didn’t know were funny or things that we were so hard on. People genuinely enjoyed it. Getting to talk to people afterwards … it’s been such a blast and such a blessing. It couldn’t be more amazing. I’m also with my best friends and travelling with them!

'Holliston' Premieres April 3rd On FearNet!

I imagine this tour has attracted some interesting people. Have you guys had any strange encounters with fans?

We haven’t had any strange interactions that I can think of. There have been so many different age groups. We try to ask that a more adult crowd come to the screenings because even though it is cartoonish, there is a little bit of violence in the show. Yesterday we had people probably anywhere from I would guess 15 years old to 80-year-olds and what not. Everyone definitely came and talked to us. We’ve been getting such a great response in such a huge age range of people. It’s really flattering and it really makes you know that you do have something special, which I think we do.

Where and when can people catch up with you guys on the road?

We go back to L.A. today and then we have an event in Anaheim at Wondercon. Booth 350 I believe. We have a signing in Chicago the week after that. We will be at Comic Con and I don’t know where else yet.

Your career has been very diverse already. Is there a genre or role you haven’t tackled yet that you would like to take a stab at in the future?

I don’t know. I’ve been really lucky in my career. I’ve been able to do everything from comedy, to drama, to horror. Getting a taste of it all, I don’t really have a favorite because they have all been so different, so right, and so wonderful to work on. I guess in the future I would like to be working with people I love on quality projects, whatever that may be.

Do you have any other film projects we should be on the look out for?

Not right now! I did “Chillerama” with Adam and Joe. That came out a few months ago. I have “Holliston” and that’s about it right now!

Laura Catalina Ortiz as "Laura"

What do you consider the defining moment of your career so far?

Oh my god! It’s so hard because I’ve done so many different things. I did “The Hills Have Eyes,” which is where I met a lot of the people I’ve ended up working with. I also did a T-Mobile commercial when I first came out here that kind of put me on the map and led to a bunch of things. That commercial alone gave me a career in voice over. I would say it’s somewhere between “The Hills Have Eyes” and the T-Mobile commercial. Those two have opened so many different doors for me and have defined who and what kind of work I have done to this day.

What is the best piece of advice someone has given you along the way in your career?

Probably that auditions and work will always be there, but your family should come first.

That’s solid advice!

Oh yeah! [laughs]

Is that the advice you would give to someone who would like to get involved with the entertainment industry?

Yeah! I would say that there is no one way to go about this so that you make it. Work hard and don’t get caught up in the networking. People think that they have to go out and do all of these things. That helps a little bit. Be serious about it. Take classes. Nothing lasts without hard work. Work hard, always put your family first, and something will happen.

Do you have any last words for your fans?

Yes! Watch “Holliston” April 3rd! Call your cable network provider to make sure you get it!

Thanks for your time and have a good day!

Thank you so much!

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Adult Film Star Riley Steele Scores A Lead Role In ‘Piranha 3-D’

Adult Film Star Riley Steele Scores A Lead Role In ‘Piranha 3-D’

riley-steeleAnother quick update on the casting for Alex Aja’s Piranha 3-D. It appears that adult film star Riley Steele will be tackling the role of “Crystal”, which is said to be one of the films leads. Steele is currently a contract girl for The Digital Playground and debuted in the big-budget porn epic “Pirates II: Stagnetti’s Revenge.” She has also gone on to star in a handful of new releases from the studio including “Riley Steele: Perfect Pet” and “Riley Steele: Chic.”

“[Riley’s] natural beauty will light up the screen as she frolics with the hordes of spring break partygoers in our very contemporary, scary 3-D movie,” producer Mark Canton said.
 
“I am extremely proud of Riley Steele and her significant role in ‘Piranha 3-D,’” Digital Playground CEO Samantha Lewis said. “This is an amazing opportunity for Riley as the 94-page script was written to capitalize on her powerful sex appeal and has her appearing in a large number of scenes. I have every confidence in Riley’s ability to instill all of her beauty and charisma to the film through her spectacular screen presence.”
 
“I thought getting an audition for ‘Piranha 3-D’ was one of the highlights of my life, but when I was offered the part, I almost died,” Steele said. “I’m going to be around all these amazing actors, so I really want to keep up and learn from them.”

The film already has an impressive lineup that features Elisabeth Shue, Ving Rhames, Dina Meyer, Adam Scott, Jessica, Szohr, Jerry O’Connell and a very special appearances by Richard Dreyfuss and Joe Dante.

Piranha 3-D will be directed by Alexandre Aja and is currently filming in Arizona and is scheduled for a March 19, 2010 release date.

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Derek Mears: Beyond The Mask

Derek Mears: Beyond The Mask

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We all recently bore witness to the resurrection of one of the most iconic characters in cinema history. Jason Voorhees has terrified audiences for nearly 3 decades and has recently slashed his way back into the hearts and minds of many adults and teenagers around the world. While the role has been filled by many brilliant actors over the years, the newest man to take up the hockey mask and machete has introduced us to a much more darker and more human version of the unstoppable killer. Derek Mears, contrary to his persona in 2009’s Friday the 13th, could not be a nicer guy. An accomplished actor and stuntman, Derek is humbled by his success and is enthusiastic about what the future holds for him. Derek recently sat down with Icon vs. Icon‘s Steve Johnson to discuss his past, his career as a stuntman and actor, his experiences while on the set of Friday the 13th, and his undeniable appreciation of his fans. Look out!  Here comes the man behind the mask!

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Bakersfield, California. Known for agriculture, Buck Owens, and the rock band Korn.

When did you realize you wanted to pursue a career in film?

Kinda early I guess. I remember being younger and having my mom asking me what I wanted to do for a living. I said that I wanted to play with my friends for the rest of my life, but I want to get paid for it. She said no, in a loving, supporting way of course. I started off playing Dungeon and Dragons at young age and went, this is great, this is what I want to do for the rest of my life and I’m kinda doing the same thing, just a live action version.

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Derek Mears is Jason Voorhees

You performed improv comedy, is that something you enjoyed?

Yeah, that’s how I got started off years back, when I was seventeen years old. I was invited to join a troupe called ComedySportz in Bakersfield. ComedySportz is competitive improv comedy and is a giant national franchise. I would go every year to this big tournament in Milwaukee, where it originated from and I made a lot of friends there. We all eventually kinda moved out to Los Angeles and I joined the LA team and played for a while. I took like eight years off to work on tv and film and now I have been back for three years with the main company, performing here in LA. So I have been doing it for twelve years now, which is so much fun.

You have credits in films and television as an actor and a stuntman, which do you prefer?

Truthfully I like them both. The difference between the two is kinda a white collar, blue collar job. As an actor you can have a little more creative freedom, but I really enjoy being physical on the stuntman side of it. I dunno, it’s so funny, even if I get a job and I’m hired as a stuntman, I’m like aw man…, you can always make a character, you know and your dialog is, eh… ok. But then if I get hired as just a plain actor, I’m like can I bash through something, get launched across the room, or fight somebody? No? Ok… So, I’m never happy. 

How did you get involved in being a stuntman?

When I moved out to Los Angeles from Bakersfield, my first “hollywood audition” was for Universal Studios Hollywood for the Wild, Wild, Wild, West Stunt Show. I got hired there. Half of the people were actors who they trained to be stunt people and the other half were stunt people they trained to be actors. I actually came in on the acting side and they trained me to do the stunts for that show and I became friends with a lot of the stunt guys and have a background in martial arts. They would go out and learn new stunts and were like, “hey man you want to hang out” and I was like “ok, but I mainly do acting and comedy.” I would just learn with them and I kinda fell into it, no pun intended. [laughs]

As a stuntman, have you ever had any close calls or serious injuries?

Where is some wood, I’m going to knock on it. I have been so lucky. I have had minor breaks, but nothing really big, so I have been very, very fortunate. There are times when you do a stunt when something kinda close happens, you’re like, hey if I were a few inches off that could have knocked me out or done permanent damage.

mears2What do you do to keep in top physical shape?

I do different weight training regimens. I do some stuff called CrossFit, which is all functional body training. It’s a website called Crossfit.com, where they give you a workout for each day. It is just fantastic. I train MMA as a hobbyist at John McCarthy’s ultimate fighting school, which is so much fun to do. They also offer a CrossFit there too. So I bounce between that and of course doing different weights in the gym and stuff for the aesthetic body look.

How do you prepare physically for your acting roles versus stuntman roles?

I kinda stay neutral. Depending on what role I am doing, I’ll tailor that work out for that role. In some roles they may want me to be larger body wise or they may want me to be thinner body wise, so I’ll tailor the work out accordingly.  

We understand that you are a fan of the horror genre. Do you have any favorite movies or directors?

Oh yeah. Totally. I don’t know if it is particularly horror, it’s more kind of sci-fi, but Del Toro is amazing, Guillermo Del Toro. His attention to different makeup effects, seeing that he came from a makeup background. What he shoots looks so freaking amazing, that guys is a ugh… I am a fan. Some of my favorite horror movies. Not because I am a part of the series, but before I was a part of the series, I love the Friday the 13th series, the Evil Dead series, I love Alien, sort of sci-fi/horror. If it has to do with sci-fi, comic books, or horror, I am a fan.

You have been involved in a few remakes of classic horror films. What is your feeling on the latest craze in Hollywood of remaking movies?

I kinda understand both sides of the argument for remakes. I guess I would be more on the pro side, not because I am a part of it, but just for the fact you always have the original and the classics. Some of them, I think it is a good idea to remake just to update what’s going on because some of them may have lacked in plot or they lacked in special effects. There are certain things you can improve on and I am always up for that. So if they do something, like Dawn of the Dead for example, I think was an amazing job updating the zombies and it looked fantastic. Something like that I am totally pro. If it turns out they do a remake of something I don’t like, I always keep in my mind you know, well they tried, I still have the classics. I kinda separate the two and not think that the new ones or the remakes have ruined the old films.

Are you a fan of the Friday the 13th series? If so, what is your favorite movie in the series?

Part four with Ted White. It’s so wild, I really relate to it. That’s the one that kinda drew me in. I kinda have an emotional connection to part four. I grew up with a disorder called alopecia, which means that I don’t grow a lot of hair basically. My body sees the hair as a foreign entity and rejects it. So, the part in part four where Corey Feldman comes downstairs and he has his head shaved and he trying to get Jason’s attention because he is trying to emulate the young version of Jason. I really connected to that because at the time that’s what my hair looked like. I had little clumps of hair here and there and I was like oh my gosh, I am a little version of Jason. So, I easily became emotionally connected to the character. Now I actually get to play the character, which is bizarre.   

mears5How did you get the role of Jason Vorhees in Friday the 13th?

I payed Platinum Dunes six million dollars. No, [laughs] Platinum Dunes talked to a bunch of different industry professionals, who they were asking who they thought would be the new Jason. I am very fortunate because my name kept popping up. They ended up bringing two people in for a meeting. It was me and another person and I got it, so I was extremely, extremely lucky.

The role of Jason Vorhees has been filled by many actors, each with their own spin on the role. Did you find donning the hockey mask a bit intimidating at first?

A little bit. Myself being a horror fan, being respectful or being a fan of the guys that came before me. I kinda didn’t want to be the guy like, “that’s the guy who ruined the series,” for my time holding the conch. That was factored in. My job is that I feel like I am representing the horror fans and I just want to do a good job, to represent the character to its full potential.

Being a part of the Friday the 13th family as one of the Jasons, have you found any sort of rivalry or brotherhood between you and the other actors that have played Jason?

There really is like a brotherhood. It was nice, I have met almost everybody that has played Jason before and everyone has been so warm and welcoming. C.J. Graham, Jason from part six, was over the top welcoming. He was the first one to kinda take me in and go, “hey congratulations on everything and welcome to the family. It’s a very small unique group of guys and at one time I was the new guy, at one time Kane was the new guy. It’s your turn to be the new guy and enjoy it and live it up because later on it will pass on to someone else. Welcome, have a good time.” I was really blow away with that. He was really, really, kind. 

Your Jason is angrier and is far more human than any other Jason in the series. Did you have input into the development of the character or was it laid out for you in the script?

The aggressiveness was kinda all me. [laughs] The humanization of the character, a lot of that credits back to Mark Swift and Damian Shannon and the writers. They really wanted to get the script back to the original base of what made Jason great in the earlier films and make him more human, which made him, in my opinion scary. Their purpose was to make Jason frightening again. So I have to give the credit to them for that side of it. 

Where there any challenges while performing on set? Only having one eye to see out of, filming in texas, etc…

Yeah definitely. Having the one eye to see out of was really tough. I had a small slit in the other eye. It was almost as if you are looking through a toilet paper dispenser. You lose all of your peripheral vision from that one eye. I bashed myself so many times into so many different things around the set. When you’re fully committed to the scene, chasing somebody or being aggressive, you can’t see some of the low hanging objects. I thank god that Scott Stoddard, who in my opinion is fifty percent of the Jason character because he did the special effects for him and the design for him. I thank him so much for making the hockey mask out of what you would actually make a protective hockey mask out of.  That saved my face many a time. Just to elaborate on the other hardships of the character. We shot in Austin, Texas in the summer time. From my navel up to my head, I had a full body prosthetic on. After about the second week of shooting your skin starts to get irritated. You got heat rash and you try not to move so much when you are not shooting so the medical adhesive, which keeps the prosthetic onto your own skin, doesn’t rip or pull the irritated skin. So after awhile, you feel like a horse with a burr under its saddle. You get to the aggressive mode a little easier, but still, you are wearing it all day long. In no way I am complaining because you know going into it, it is going to be uncomfortable. You try to focus on the final product, that if it is going to look good, it’s going to be great and not worry about the pain now. Was is the adage I always say, pain is temporary and dumb is forever.         

mears6Which incarnation of Jason do you prefer in the film? Sack head Jason or the masked version?

I like them both equally. I like what Scott came up with, with the creepy sack mask and later on with the hockey mask, it looks great also. I really don’t have a preference, I liked doing both. I was really happy as a fan that they added the sack into the script.  

What is your favorite kill in the new movie?

I really enjoyed the throat kill with Aaron Yoo inside the toolshed. When we actually shot that, the take they ended up using with Arron sputtering the blood, after we yelled cut I asked him if he was ok, what’s going on? What he did was, he tried to inhale the blood that he had in his mouth into his sinuses, so he would spit it out of his nose also, but he started to gag on it. It was horrible sounding, so it was very realistic when we actually shot it. He was such a great guy too, he was so hilarious! All of those funny bits that he did in the toolshed is him just improvising.    

Were any of the other actors/actresses intimidated or scared by your presence while in full costume?

It was funny because when I talked to them about it they knew it was me, we all hung out and had become very close friends, but when you switch over and you have the Jason gear on, I am still myself moving around until they yell action then you switch over to the bad side of yourself. Some of them kept telling me I know it is you underneath there, it’s freaking me out, but I know it’s you, I know your nice, I know your nice and they kept kinda repeating that mantra over and over again. I remember Willa Ford, when she was doing her scene in the lake. The first time she ever saw me in full Jason gear, I kinda on purpose showed up to help her for an eye line. Her eye line was off camera looking at somebody and I walked in and just stood there and I kinda helped her freak out a little bit more. That’s what I am, I am a giver Steve. [laughs]   

Are you happy with the success of the Friday the 13th?

Yes, I really am. For a lot of us who worked on the film, we are fans of the series and for us it was more of a passion project than just another job and we really wanted it to be good. We had to be respectful of what happened in the past, but we also had to take risks for the new audience. The feedback I’ve been getting is really, really positive. Everyone has their critiques, but the majority of the feedback I have been getting is great, so I am very, very satisfied and proud to be a part of the series.     

Derek Mears in 'Pro-Life' from Masters of Horror

Derek Mears in 'Pro-Life' from Masters of Horror

Can you tell us anything about the upcoming Friday the 13th DVD/Blu-Ray? Was there behind the scene footage filmed? Will we see an unrated version of the film?

We shot a lot of the scenes a couple different ways. Being that Jason is not just pure evil, that he was a victim and kinda created, we empathize with him and we empathize for him. We shot scenes in ways where you would feel more sympathy for Jason and then we shot it more aggressively, so when we did the editing, the editor could choose the flow as to play it how the scene needed. There’s that fine line between sympathy and aggressiveness. If you go too sympathetic you lose the ferocity of the character and if you go too ferocious you lose the human tie or the empathy for the character.  

A sequel to Friday the 13th was recently announced, will you be back as Jason and is there anything you can tell us about it?

What I can officially say from the producers is the writers are writing the sequel right now. It’s still in the rumor status because it hasn’t been officially green lit. I do have a second picture option with Platinum Dunes. It could be for part two or it could be for a different film entirely. Being that the film is not yet green lit, they can’t make any offers or anything. I would like to return, but nothing is for sure.   

You were featured in the Friday the 13th retrospective His Name Was Jason. How did you get involved in that film and what was that experience like?

That was crazy. How did I get involved in that? They just called up and said “hey, we are doing a retrospect for the Friday the 13th series, do you want to be a part of it” and I go “Yes, are you kidding me?” I just remember at the time I was so excited and being a total goofball and doing the interview. It was a blast. It was just fun being a part of something that you are a fan of and meet people that I have watched over years and meet them in person. Another thing with all of the focus and attention from the Jason role is being a fan of different celebrities and having them know who you are. It’s a little surreal, it’s a little out of this world.     

What other projects are in your immediate future?

It’s crazy. I’ve been asked that a lot lately. I totally want to talk about it, but I can’t. There’s a project that is a super-secret project, it’s a big project, but I can’t divulge any information about it at all or the studio will destroy me. I feel like a kid who has a birthday present for somebody and he wants to tell them so bad about it and how cool it is, but I can’t say anything right now, I can’t. So, I can’t divulge anything right now, but it’s something cool.    

You have been hitting the convention circuit for a while now. What has that experience been like for you? Do you enjoy meeting fans?

Oh man, that is so much fun. I am actually going to one this coming weekend. The horror fans are so amazing. They are so loving and accepting. It’s funny because people, they thank me for coming out to the conventions and I’m like, “thank you guys for coming out.” On my end they go “Hey Derek we’d like to pay you to come out and talk about sci-fi, horror, and comic books, is that cool with you?” I’m like, “Yeah, that’s what I do every day.” Hollywood doesn’t have to pay me to do it, I love to do it. So I sit around with all of these friends and I geek gossip a bit. I dig it.

mears7Any strange encounters or notable interaction with other actors?

Yeah actually, can you believe it, I have. This one thing that I would say is the strangest encounter or the strangest thing that has happened. It’s not super strange, but it was kinda strange for me. Before the film came out, I was having a conversation with a guy and we were talking about being Friday the 13th fans, he and I, and I told him that I learned that to be a super fan you’ve got to have a tattoo. Now that is a commitment if you have a tattoo and he goes “oh really?” This guy has a shaved head and he turned around and on the back of his head he has a giant Jason mask tattooed there. I go “ok, you are a huge fan.” He shows me his drivers license, which is awesome, and he legally changed his name to Jason Vorhees with a “z”. I am like, “You are a hardcore fan, you might be the biggest fan I have seen.” He goes “I know what I want you to sign” and I go “Oh cool what” and he points to the back of his head. I go, “Oh dude, think about this” and I go “what if the film sucks?” He goes “The film is not going to suck.” I’m like, “Yeah you’re right, the film is not going to suck.” So I signed the back of his head and he had it tattooed onto him. It’s so wild because he is just a big fan and he’s not sick or anything like that, he is just really nice, he is just a big fan. It just kinda wowed me.          

Do you have an advice for anyone who would like to get involved in the film industry as an actor or stuntman?

I get asked for advice all of the time and it’s really, really tough because I don’t really know what to say. There are so many different routes to get to where you want to be. I have so many talented friends myself that aren’t working and it is bizarre to me. It’s a mixture of talent, luck, and timing. Every time when I get a phone call to work on a show, I keep expecting the phone to stop ringing or this could be my last show. I feel very, very fortunate that the phone keeps ringing. It’s really tough to give advice, I don’t know. I’m still kinda wondering how the hell I got here. 

Do you have any last words?

I just want to thank the fans. The fans have been so great. It’s a wild ride!

Thanks for your time and best of luck!


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