Wound interview-David Blyth and Campbell Cooley

On March 16th-Vendetta Films is releasing Wound in New Zealand. While an American release date is unknown. I want to tell you fans, if you want some daring and original horror, this film delivers quite the punch. Demand companies like Breaking Glass, Unearthed, Brain Damage or any company to put this movie out on dvd. You are the fans..you have the say, they listen to you.  You influence change. Tell them you are sick of the same old crap, and you want new. This interview was conducted in December, right after I told them that Wound was my number one film of 2010. Enjoy.

1.So David and Campbell..how would you classify Wound?

David- As an original film, where the true horror of a marginalized woman is explored, it’s art house with a sprinkling of splatter. True original cinema of the unconscious.
Campbell-SPOILERS: if the reader hasn’t seen the film, they should skip to the next question).  Personally, I classify ‘Wound’ as a tragic-fantasy with horror elements.  It’s not a horror flick modeled in the splatter or torture porn genre (though it has some of those elements). The film is very Lynchian (with generous lashing of Jodorowsky mixed in). And when the twist occurs at the end, my feeling is that the viewer has witnessed a horrific fever-dream.

2.Is there anytime while filming, that you thought, you were going too far?

David-Not really, I worried that I hadn’t gone far enough and that the film was going to be too tame. The content/taboos needed to be handled calmly, openly and sensitively. I discussed at length with Kate O’Rourke, the meaning behind the scenes and there emotional connection to the story

Campbell-Initially, the only scene that really sort of freaked me out (before we shot it) was the wrapping scene. Not sure why. There was something about it that disturbed me. Oddly though, once I had the pig mask on, I was perfectly fine and I had no trouble with it. I think the ladies were probably more uncomfortable than me; for obvious reasons.

3.Did you do a casting call, or did you know who you were going to use?.. How exactly does one tell an actress at a casting call that the role calls for her to be raped, please don’t tell me you asked her if she had experience with this?

David-Yes we did casting calls for all the roles in Wound, despite very limited resources and funding, which restricted the number of casting call ups. Andrew Beattie the Co Producer was very instrumental in setting all this up.
As far as Te Kaea and those flashback scenes, I explained in detail how I wanted to film them right up front, so as to be as transparent as possible. These difficult scenes were done on a closed set.

Campbell-The simple answer is that you just tell her. If she says ‘No’ or even seems apprehensive, then you don’t audition her. You can’t skirt around such an issue and risk having an actress freak out on you the day you film the scene. She has to be committed before she even auditions

4.Your movie was just under 80 mins. Did you cut anything out of it? What I mean to ask is will we see a longer version like a director’s cut?

David-There were a few “part scenes” that didn’t make it to the final cut, but that was because they diluted the power of the overall story. The version you see is the definitive directors cut.
I wanted the movie to be tight as you need to perceive the film pictorially, Wound doesn’t follow the traditional linear script structure,.

5.The MPAA said they will give you a theatrical run, would you cut any of the film to get it a R Rating.? Lets be serious David, this movie is NC17 or unrated easy. Hell the first three mins of the film are too graphic alone for a R then throw in the rest of the movie.

David-I guess the castration scene would be the major issue in terms of censorship, its going to be interesting to see how censors react to the film.
In NZ the chief censor commented that the spfx of the castration were unrealistic and low budget and couldn’t be taken seriously.
6.Are you a fan of horror movies? Or Torture Porn?

David-I’m no fan of torture porn. I appreciate original horror films like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. But I guess I’m probably going to accused of being a sadist and I note that Luis Bunuel was accused of the same.

Campbell-I’m not a huge fan of the genre. (I don’t enjoy seeing people harmed, even if it’s only pretend.) That said; there are some horror films I’ll watch because they allude to social issues. George Romero is notorious for making social commentary in his films.  And while many fans of the zombie genre criticized, ‘Land of the Dead’, I quite enjoyed it. Horror should be about tapping into personal fear. For example, there were many non-gratuitous elements in ‘Cube’ that made me an emotional wreck while viewing it. I’d gladly act in another horror if the script was well written.

7.Will Wound get a theatrical run?  Do you think an audience can handle the movie?

David-Unfortunately I believe Wound is a film that will not get a theatrical run due to the dark subject matter and difficult storyline. I think “transgressive cinema” is not quite what the American Heartland is looking for after a long hard day looking for work.

8.Do you think the internet is harmful or helping to a film like Wound?

Campbell-Definitely helpful. Given the budgetary constraints of making ‘Wound’, we didn’t have the money to promote it like most films. We had a publicist who showed us numerous ways of promoting the film for free on the internet.   And it’s the incredible online word-of-mouth by people like you that make promoting films like ours possible.

David-Wound has acknowledged and incorporated the shift in perception that the internet and webcams have bought up ( Refer “Transfigured Nights”, the images play as if between the living and the dead.) and its all to do with frame rate per second on NZ’s slow internet.

9.What was the best film of 2010 to you guys? ( and Wound does not count)

Campbell-I didn’t see a lot of movies this year so it would be unfair for me to offer comment. However, I quite enjoyed, ‘Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale’. www.imdb.com/title/tt1401143/ It caters to my incredibly dark sense of humor and resonates with my story-telling aesthetic. (…and ironically has hints of the horror genre about it.)

David-I haven’t seen Serbian film so can’t comment on that, I am going for the self promotion and saying the best film I saw was my own, but was mightily impressed with the new reconstituted version of Fritz Lang’s “Metropolis”, at Fantasia Montreal, with full orchestra and was an extraordinary experience.
I finally saw Gaspar Noe’s “Enter the Void”, which is incredible. (Probably a year late on that one).
10.Without giving too much away, I want to say.., you have fucked me up. I cannot shake the scene that involved those creepy masks, plastic wrap and a bizarre chant. Scenes like that look painful as did a few others, did anyone get hurt while filming?

Campbell-No one was hurt while filming (to the best of my knowledge). Without revealing any secrets, in my first scene we found a way to minimalize the pain that the lead-actress would endure from my ‘punishment’; (there was simply no way to fake that moment).  The infamous ‘wrapping scene’ was probably the most physical demanding for my co-stars

David-No one was hurt in the making of WOUND, all the tough scenes were done with the utmost respect for the actors.
The gladwrap scene is something that first featured in my Dominatrix Documentary “Bound for Pleasure” and was not scary to me..

11.would you let your kids watch this movie without you around and if so, do you think a child say 12 or 16 can handle the message of this movie ?

Campbell-I don’t have any children but if I did I wouldn’t let them see it till they were 18. Granted, many kids these days are seemingly more ‘mature’ because they have been desensitized over the years; being forced to grow up faster due to the constant visual bombardment of sex and violence on TV (and in film). But I still have a conservative streak in me and would not want even teenagers to see it.  This is a film for adults.

David-I don’t think a 12 year old needs to watch Wound, certainly I believe a 16 year old could handle it..

12.Why wound?

Campbell-I did the film because it appealed to me on a Lynchian level. For totally selfish reasons, I also wanted to do a movie that could potentially have a cult following down the road. Lastly, it was also a film that pushed my personal boundaries as an actor. My first scene alone… well, you know what I did.

David-Well we all have wounds, and as you get older those wounds don’t necessarily heal or go away. I was interested in how fresh wounds can reopen old wounds, and what the repercussions would be.
Mind you If you are of a S&M bent then WOUND means something entirely different, as in glad wrap “wound” around a body or bodies. This desire or fear of being bound up goes to some core issues of the human psyche.
Every individual that comes to Wound is going to interpret the film through there own world view based on there own unique history.
I also think one word titles are hot

13.Do you read bad press about you and your films, and if so are you mad or upset?

David-Nobody likes to read really bad reviews where your films are misunderstood. I have had bad reviews for all my films, what is interesting is that the prejudices of the reviewer often show up in these critiques, and since I am a taboo buster, it’s easy to get religious reviewers fired up. “Pretentious twaddle” is my highlight from a Wound critic.

14.Besides promoting Wound, what is next for you film wise?

David-A mythological/modern day romp with three modern day female rock singers. The film is tentatively called “ Three Muses “ . To round out the slate, I’m also working on a sexually dysfunctional family film.

Campbell-After doing ‘Wound’, you can imagine that I would be emotionally drained. The antithesis to participating in such an intense story would be to act in a hilarious, high-concept film modeled after the B-movie style. ‘Ghost Shark 2: Urban Jaws’ is being billed as a dramatic horror/sci fi but it’s also an amazingly hysterical black comedy! www.ghostshark2.com/

I’m also currently in a unique ad campaign playing an opinionated sports reporter.  http://nznotworthnews.co.nz/2011/02/03/chad-pennington/

I’m already lined up to act in a few other projects for 2011 but I’ll also be spending much of the year working on a two documentaries; (one I’ve been researching for four years).