ELIAS VS ELIAS(Moviemaker Elias talks with himself… errr… about himself…)
------------------------------------------------------------------------So, Elias, how are you today?
Not too bad, how ‘bout you, Elias?Pretty much the same. Thanks for sitting down with yourself today.
Glad to do it. Nice to be here with you…errr… me… us… uhh… nice to be here.Well that was awkward.
Tell me about it.So, you’re that guy behind “LovecraCked! The Movie”.
Guilty yes, but I had a lot of accomplices;)Are you trying to say that these “accomplices” are the ones to blame for “LovecraCked!” - a movie that one critic called a “crusting white bead of cocksnot on the anal hair of humanity”?
Not at all, I’m just as much to blame;) I take it you didn’t like the film?No I like it alright, but then it’s not like I have much choice in the matter, we are the same person after all.
You have a point there.What parts of the movie did you direct? How exactly did this flick that has been called by one critic “a juvenile, low-concept mess courtesy of people stuck at anal-fixation” really come about?
I see you really like some of those quotes. We did get a lot of positive reviews, too. One reviewer actually said-Yeah, that’s very interesting. So tell me more about this “dried up crusty piece of dog-shit” as one critic called it. Why is it called “LovecraCked! The Movie”. Was that to make sure we didn’t confuse it with some similarly named breakfast cereal?
Well, it was just “LovecraCked!” first. I added “The Movie” part on to the title later. It pretty much went down like this… Everything started out with a script I wrote for a 30 min mockumentary spoof on H.P. Lovecraft called "LovecraCked!". We had almost wrapped shooting on this short when I had the idea to expand it into a feature length anthology. So I put out a call for films/filmmakers in schools, clubs, online and off, basically anywhere that filmmakers could be found.
Some filmmakers submitted shorts they’d already made, and others made theirs from scratch. My basic requirement for submissions were that the films be no longer than 30 min and of course they had to be either based on Lovecraft’s stories or at least somewhat Lovecraftian in nature. After 6-8 months of accepting film submissions, I narrowed it down to 9 final shorts and edited them in between the segments of the original 30 min "LovecraCked!" mockumentary. And that's how "LovecraCked!" became "LovecraCked! The Movie". More Lovecraftiness for the audience, better distribution opportunities for the film and more exposure for the filmmakers. I definitely think making the jump to feature length was the right thing to do. The results have been great so far!
Also, I don’t know anything about a “LovecraCked!” breakfast cereal, but it sounds like a great idea! Maybe some “crackers” are in order, too. Mmmm… cheese and crackers… Speaking of which, got anything to drink?
Just this glass of cool, clear, water in my hand…
I see.So the whole idea to expand the short into a feature length anthology… You basically just pulled that outa your ass right?
Pretty much. A lot of my best ideas come from there actually.Me, too… *coughs* So tell me a little about your dreams.
My dreams?Yeah, your dreams, your goals your aspirations…
Ahh, I see. Thought you meant-Are you kidding? Why would I be interested in the perverted shit you dream up while you’re asleep?
I’m sure you wouldn’t.Actually I would. Gimme some dirty bits!
No! Besides, you already know anyway!True… come to think of it, you are a sick bastard!
I’ll take that as a compliment.So tell me about your dreams? Have they been crushed yet?
Well, they haven’t been crushed yet, but it is tough to make a living making movies. Hell, it can be pretty tough just to get a movie made sometimes. Last few years have definitely been going pretty well. Haven’t been able to quite my day job yet, but I’m making movies and getting ‘em out there so, and that’s what’s most important for me. Once I’m paying my bills doing this…well, that’ll just be a dream come true, and I’m definitely shooting for it, no pun intended;) I’d also like to do my part not just to entertain folks, but to make a difference in what little ways I can.Wow that last part was cheeeesy!
Yeah I know, but it’s true.Ok, Mother Teresa, go save the world. You’re doing a great job with “LovecraCked! The Movie” so far - I heard it made one critic want to kill himself.
Ha, ha. You must’ve read the Arrow in the Head review. Yeah that’s a pretty great quote any way ya shake it. Be that as it may, I never had any lofty intentions with the movie just hoping to offer a little entertainment for the masses.What’re your favorite movies, and don’t say Star Wars Episode I or II or I might just have to open up a can of whoop ass on principle!
Wanna see me get my ass beat? Just check out my shenanigans in “The Voice Inside”. It’s a short film I did back in 2000 and it’s on the “LovecraCked!” DVD. We actually won a bunch of awards for it… “Most Perverted”, “Most Offensive”… I’m sure you get the idea.Okay Mr. Shameless Self Promotion. Done tooting your horn?
Sure. It’s your horn, too ya know.Yeah… well you can toot my horn anytime…
I think I’ll pass. Anyway some of my favorite flicks at the moment are “Dead Alive”, “The Fly” (’86), “The Thing” (’82), “Dawn of the Dead” (’78), “Bad Guy”, “Audition”, “Snake of June”, “Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring”, “The Haunting” (’63), “The Woman in Black”, “The Mothman Prophecies”, “The Exorcism of Emily Rose”, “The Toxic Avenger”, “Tromeo and Juliet”, and really anything from the Monty Pythoners and the South Park boys. I’ve become a pretty big fan of Joss Whedon since “Firefly” and “Serenity” and I gotta say the new “Battlestar Galactica” series has me pretty well hooked now, too. I’ll also, pretty much see anything from Peter Jackson and David Cronenberg. They’re probably my favorite two directors right now. You copied all those films and filmmakers off of my MySpace page didn’t you?
What can I say, I like your taste in movies, Elias.Likewise you thieving bastard, likewise. So tell me… what made you want to make movies? Movies that one reviewer described as “punishment for some sin that [he] committed in a previous life”? Do you believe you’ve been sent by God to torture the world’s film critics?
Sent by God? Not that I’m aware of. Believe it or not I never really set out to torture anybody. I’m just glad the film’s getting a reaction, though.
As far as how I got started… Well, I’ve always been a bit of a performer I think. I liked entertaining people and expressing myself ever since I was a kid, and my mother encouraged that a lot. I started out acting and writing at first-And after that failed? What then?
I still act and write. Basically I just decided to expand into making my own films as well. I see… The “have your cake and eat it, too” approach. What gave you your first inspiration?
In the very beginning when I was a kid I remember seeing this one episode of “Muppet Babies” on TV that had something to do with acting or movie making-Wait are you trying to tell me that crap “Muppet Show” spin off is what made you want to make movies?!
Not exactly… it’s just the first memory I have where I thought that might be something I’d want to do.That is so gay!
Yeah, yeah. Actually, what inspired me to take the first step and begin seriously pursuing acting was Oliver Stone’s “Born on the 4th of July”. I remember-What!?
What? I know he hasn’t made a really stand out movie since “U-Turn” but when I was 15 or so “Born on the 4th of July”-WHAT?!?!
Errr…Are you telling me that watching that pansy, nutjob Cruise (who couldn’t act his way out of his own asshole)… Are you telling me that made you want to be an actor?!
Errr…well, it definitely helped to motivate me at the time. He certainly did turn out to be quite the nutjob, though.Sooooo gay!
I think we’ve established that already.So what kind of people work on your films? Are they friends or just some crazies you pick up off the street and bribe with alcohol and drugs?
Most of the people I’ve worked with so far are friends who I’ve managed to rope into my fiendish plans. They are often pretty crazy in their own right, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Making movies is all about collaboration, especially on an indie level, and the people on set with you are just as important as anything. I’m always interested in meeting and expanding the pool of friends and filmmakers I work with. Making “LovecraCked! The Movie” has been a great experience and I’ve forged many friendships with some really talented actors and filmmakers throughout the process. I don’t think I’d really change anything. I think everything’s worked out really well, and I’m definitely looking forward to getting rolling on the next production!So you wouldn’t change anything? No regrets? No: “I can’t believe I was such an ass” moments?
Of course I’ve made an ass of myself plenty of times, and I’m sure I’ll make an ass of myself many times again – somehow I don’t think this interview will be an exception;) Hell, I’m interviewing myself right now - what could be more asinine than that?I don’t follow you.
Never mind… I make my fair share of mistakes sure, but I think the most important thing is to try and learn from that. No point dwelling on what you can’t change, better to save it for the next time.Did you rehearse that answer, or just pull it from your arse once again?
My “arse” is very prolific.It certainly is. What is this “BiFF JUGGERNAUT Productions”? Why the silly name?
Well, BiFF JUGGERNAUT Productions is basically me and the other poor bastards I’m able to rope into production. My friend/collaborator Chad and I came up with the name many years ago through a process of random selection. There were a couple other potential names as well, but “BiFF JUGGERNAUT” had the best ring to it so that was the name that stuck.“Biff Juggernaut”… isn’t he a Japanese monster-porn star?
Not that I know of, but in the word of Japanese monster-porn anything’s possible.True, true… Tell us about some of the problems you’ve faced in the past. Clearly there must be many.
There are always many challenges, especially when you’re making movies on low budgets-Aren’t you even lower than “low budget”? Wouldn’t it be more accurate to say you’re the lowest of the low? Haven’t you said in the past that you fund your films with the money you make forcing 6-year olds to sell lemonade all summer? Squeezing those lemons until their poor little hands are all cracked and bleeding?
A little self-deprecating humor’s always good. And there weren’t any children involved, they’re better as grips - great with all the heavy lifting;) Chad was the guilty party that came up with the whole Lemonade stand goof many years ago. Come to think of it, I’m pretty sure I’ve never even sold lemonade as a kid, much less funded a movie that way. If you can do it, though, more power to ya!So you admit it was all a lie?
Yes, but it was only with the best intentions.But, I believed in you!
I’m sorry-I was going to start my own lemonade stand and make movies with the proceeds…
Sorry…You still could…You’ve crushed my dreams! *sobs*
Um…*laughs* Are you kidding? Do you think I’m a complete moron?
Well…Yeah, yeah, it takes one to know one, birds of a feather flock together, so many fish in the sea…
So many fish in the sea?Errr… never mind. You were saying? About the challenges you face as a “low budget” filmmaker”?
Well, if there’s anything I’ve learned in the low budget realm it’s probably that pre-production is extremely important. When the budget isn’t there to shoot a specific script, it’s usually better to just shoot something else more within your budgetary range. Either that or raise more money. Whether they’re too low or too high, budgets can easily draw attention away from the story instead of helping to tell it.Interesting. So why then did you choose to toss a rather obvious dummy down the steps of that temple in “LovecraCked!”? Why not just throw yourself down the steps?
Well if I’d done the stunt myself I probably wouldn’t have survived it or at the very least ended up rather broken and mangled. Plus it probably wouldn’t have been as funny if we’d used a real person. The obvious dummy was part of the joke.That was supposed to be funny?
Yeah.Oh, I just thought it was a bad effect.
It is a bad effect that’s the joke.Well, I don’t get it. So tell me, what’s your take on the whole independent cinema thing?
I think it’s great…You think it’s great?
Yup.That’s the best you can come up with?
Well, it’s kind of a broad question really.Okay, well then let me simplify it for Your Pickiness… Tell me your thoughts on the whole digital revolution thing? The coolest thing since toasted marshmallows or just the great shit storm before the end?
Well I’ve never been a big marshmallow fan so it certainly beats the hell out of them – toasted or otherwise. Digital video has definitely helped a lot of filmmakers get their start in recent years (yours truly notwithstanding), and it’s definitely lowered the price tag for low budget movie making. More and more independent films are being produced and it’s great that so many folks are out there making it happen. In the end, whether it be film or video… when that great “shit storm” comes we’re all gonna be swimming in it! I think we’re safe for now, though;)Perhaps if it’s raining shit, it’s best to stay home.
Sure, you could watch an indie flick while you’re at it.I can’t think of a better way to spend the time.
When it rains shit…Watch an indie flick!
Catchy slogan.Very. So how are sales with the LovecraCked! DVD? Are we a hit with the kids?
Not bad. We did a limited release DVD, which is currently for sale at our site shop over at www.biffjuggernaut.com, and at other select online retailers. We’re also in the process of negotiating with a distributor for a major home video release. I’m putting together some nice extras for that one, including an extended version of the film, and a pretty wild, pretty drunken audio commentary.*yawns* That’s very interesting.
Do I detect a wee bit of boredom, maybe even some sarcasm, Elias?Look, Elias, I’ve watched “LovecraCked!” more times than is humanly healthy, as have you. Aren’t you over it already? I know I am.
Sure I’m looking forward to working on something new and I have some other projects already in the works, but when push comes to shove you gotta do every flick justice, and that means promoting like there was no tomorrow. Gotta spread the word. If the peeps don’t know about it, they’ll never see it, and if nobody sees the film… in a way it doesn’t really exist.…Damn, I’m fresh outa snappy comebacks.
I’ll take that as a compliment. Any last words?
Thanks for taking the time to talk to yourself today, Elias.Thank, you.
No, thank you.No, no, thank you.
No, no, no, thank you.No, no, no, no, thank you.
No, no, no, no, no, thank you.No, no- Ahh, what’s the bloody point…
I don’t believe there was one.You are such a bastard.
It takes one to know one.He who laughs last laughs best.
Who’s laughing now?Nice one.
For more info please visit:http://www.biffjuggernaut.comhttp://www.biffjuggernaut.com/lovecrackedthemoviehttp://www.myspace.com/biffjuggernautproductionshttp://www.imdb.com/name/nm0253440/