Women in Horror Month (WiHM) is an international, grassroots initiative, which encourages supporters to learn about and showcase the underrepresented work of women in the horror industries. Whether they are on the screen, behind the scenes, or contributing in their other various artistic ways, it is clear that women love, appreciate, and contribute to the horror genre. More information is available at the WiHM website.
Heidi Moore is awesome, both as a director and as a human being. During this year’s Women in Horror Month, we celebrate the awesome ladies of the genre. I was lucky enough to have her on my podcast, Grindhouse Messiah, and afterwards we caught up for a short, traditional interview as well. Here’s what Heidi had to say:
So let’s start out with the basics. Who’s Heidi Moore?
Hmm. I don’t even know who I am half the time. I am a filmmaker who loves to create art with my friends and who can’t get enough of the weird things in life. I own a production company called Wretched Productions where I make movies about whatever is on my mind, using generally no budget!
Tell us about the projects you’re working on now.
Right now, I am working on the sequel to my last movie, Dolly Deadly, called Kill Dolly Kill. It’s being produced by Troma and it’s a horror rock musical, all of which is my dream come true. I’m also about to release a documentary called MORE BLOOD! where I’ve gathered a few filmmakers and horror lovers to talk about why they think society enjoys watching death and gore for entertainment. Once that’s out, I will be taking it on a theater tour around the country.
I had the chance to speak to you for my podcast, Grindhouse Messiah, about your first film, Dolly Deadly. For those unfamiliar with the film, give them the 2-3 sentence elevator pitch.
Oh shit. Okay. I don’t know how to describe this movie so here we go…
A young boy from the trailer park loses his mom in a freak accident, and all he has left of her is her doll collection. He is bullied all the time because boys ain’t ‘sposed to play with dolls, but jokes on the bullies… the dolls come to the boy in a dream and tell him to kill them all.
What inspired you to do that film?
I really love dolls, but my main inspiration is society’s views on gender roles. I see people being torn down because they don’t act how they should; not manly or lady like. It really bugs me, and I like to write about things that stick with me like that. My son is bullied a lot and it kills me thinking about the damage these assholes at school can cause. There’s a lot to talk about here, but I won’t write you a novel. I’ll spare you!
The star of the film is one of your sons, how was that experience for him? How was it for you?
He says he’s happy about the movie now, but I don’t think he was thrilled about all the work he had to put into acting. We had to bribe him with candy and soda and there was a lot of crying. He drove me nuts while filming, but I am beyond proud of him. Watching the movie melts my heart, he was so good and it’s something I can look back on forever.
The sequel is a musical, as you noted above. At Cinepunx, we talk both film and music…so let’s look at music for a second. Who are some of your favorite bands or artists?
Growing up, I was really into punk. I listened to bands like Lunachicks, The Dwarves, Bad Religion, NoFX, Dead Kennedys, etc. Now I still like punk and am still an old punk rock lady as far as attitude and beliefs go, but my musical taste is very eclectic. I would actually really like to get into producing music videos.
On a related note, have you always been drawn to musicals and rock operas?
Oh, fuck yeah. I am obsessed with musicals of all types. I am seriously over the moon that I get to direct a musical. It’s been a dream of mine my whole life.
You noted that the new Dolly Deadly film is being made in collaboration with Troma. What’s that experience been like?
I grew up watching Troma movies and Lloyd Kaufman has always been a big inspiration for me. So to have him take an interest in my work and believe in me is huge. When we first signed with Troma, we had to make some script changes. Lloyd and I had an hour long video chat to brainstorm and write. We were so on the same page and it was really fun to work with someone who understood my ideas. I’m really excited to be working with Troma and I know Tom Komisar (the writer of Kill Dolly Kill) is excited as well.
Lloyd is surely a character. I should play you the bumper he gave us for the GM podcast sometime. It’s hilarious.
Yes, please. He’s so funny.
You can hear it at the start of our Larry Folds episode of Grindhouse Messiah, but I totally need to put it up on YouTube with some fun visuals, too. Anyway, as we wrap up WIHM, what are some words of advice you’d wanna pass along to women or girls interested in being part of the genre?
I would say not to think of yourself as a woman trying to make movies. Bottom line, you’re a filmmaker and people need to recognize that. Never allow anyone on your crew to look down on you or think you’re not capable because you’re a woman, and if they do, fire their ass. I’ve had to deal with too many guys questioning me and trying to take over because they don’t understand my vision or they think I don’t know what I’m doing. At this point, that doesn’t happen to me on set because I’ve gotten tough. I won’t let anyone pull that shit on me and you guys shouldn’t let it happen either. There are always other people to replace the jerks.
Thanks again for the chat, looking forward to the new projects. Where can folks follow those and where can they follow you?