Yes, it’s really called Deathgasm. Jason Lei Howden’s feature directorial debut is about a group of friends who spark a demon apocalypse using a mysterious piece of heavy metal sheet music. It’s insanely gory, features characters battling demons with dildos and is just an all-around outrageous blast in every respect.
The morning after Deathgasm’s especially lively world premiere screening at SXSW, I sat down with Howden, stars Milo Cawthorne and Kimberley Crossman, producers Andrew Beattie and Sarah Howden, and executive producer Ant Timpson to discuss how they managed to make this over-the-top metal/carnage mashup a reality – and with government funding nonetheless. Check out the full video interview below to hear about the Make My Horror Movie contest that started it all, the massive amount of practical effects, how they acquired the music for the movie’s killer soundtrack and more.
Milo Cawthorne, Kimberley Crossman, Ant Timpson, Andrew Beattie, Sarah Howden & Jason Lei Howden:
- 00:00 – Coming up with the title first and then developing the idea from there.
- 00:37 – Winning the Make My Horror Movie contest in New Zealand; getting government funding.
- 01:49 – Submitting a poster and logline for the competition; the public voting component of the contest.
- 03:01 – The logline for the film; how the film’s changed since the competition.
- 04:08 – Was there any concern letting someone make a feature film based on a logline and poster alone?
- 04:38 – What had to be done to get a green light even after winning the competition.
- 06:02 – Cawthorne and Crossman on the effects in the final cut of the film versus what they saw on set.
- 06:30 – Howden’s post-production background and if he did some VFX work on the film.
- 07:09 – How the vast amount of practical effects affected the shooting schedule.
- 09:23 – Having a very experienced crew.
- 10:23 – The all-star ensemble.
- 11:10 – Crossman on the insane amount of penises and dildos in this movie.
- 11:33 – Is there special dildo fight training?
- 12:25 – Cawthorne on having a second feature film play at SXSW; Crossman on her very first lead role in a feature.
- 13:52 – Howden on the cast being down for anything.
- 14:21 – Putting together the soundtrack for the movie; cold calling favorite metal bands.
- 16:30 – Making the background music work with the music the characters play in the movie.
- 17:51 – Trying to unite different types of metal fans with this film.
- 18:37 – If you’re not into metal, will you like Deathgasm?
- 19:53 – Drawing inspiration from The Goonies and The Monster Squad.
- 20:39 – Developing backstories for all the characters.
- 21:13 – Sam Berkley’s (Dion) improv skills; knowing that Berkley and Daniel Cresswell (Giles) were perfect for their roles.