If you’re looking to check out work from a rising voice in the horror community who’s making some very big moves right now, look no further than Roxanne Benjamin. She’s been making her mark on the genre for a while now, having produced a number of projects, including the V/H/S series, and also having directed segments in both Southbound and XX. Body at Brighton Rock, however, is a pretty big milestone for Benjamin because that film marks her feature debut as a director.
It stars Karina Fontes as Wendy, a part-time employee at a state park. She isn’t really the outdoorsy type and is severely undertrained compared to her friends, but Wendy is determined to prove them wrong so agrees to take on a more challenging trail assignment. Sure enough though, Wendy gets lost and not only does she wind up out in the backcountry all alone, but she also happens upon a dead body deep in the woods.
Benjamin celebrated the world premiere of Body at Brighton rock back in March at SXSW, but now that the film is making its way to theaters and On Demand on April 26th, I can finally share my conversation with Benjamin at the festival! We covered everything from the challenges of getting a first feature off the ground to making a movie out in the woods, the status of her Night of the Comet remake script, her hopes for the future of the horror genre, and so much more. You can check it all out in the video interview at the top of this article!
I’d also like to take a moment to give special thanks to our Collider Studio partner, A-List Communications. At the Supper Suite venue in Austin, libations were flowing courtesy of El Tesoro Tequila, Blue Moon Belgian White, and Hint Water. Without these fine folks, we wouldn’t be able to share conversations about movies like Body at Brighton Rock with all of you, so another big thank you to our partners for their support.
- How another movie falling apart inspired her to get to work on Body at Brighton Rock.
- Benjamin on overcoming failure while making movies and how that’s incorporated in the Body at Brighton Rock story, too.
- How Benjamin came up with the core concept and main character.
- Benjamin has gotten lost in the woods herself before.
- Who remembers the book Hatchet?
- Having a main character who makes a ton of mistakes over the course of the story.
- As horror fans, are we better prepared should a horror movie scenario play out in real life?
- Benjamin on embracing a Western theme.
- With all Benjamin’s producing experience, was there anything about directing her first feature that really surprised her?
- The shoot was only nine and a half days; having to hike the entire time.
- The biggest challenges working in this terrain.
- What’s next? The status of her Night of the Comet remake.
- The one big thing Benjamin learned from making Body at Brighton Rock that she’ll take with her to future projects.
- Benjamin speaks to women in horror, and the bright future ahead.
Here’s the official synopsis of Body at Brighton Rock:
Wendy, a part-time summer employee at a mountainous state park, takes on a rough trail assignment at the end of the season, trying to prove to her friends that she’s capable enough to do the job. When she takes a wrong turn and ends up deep in the backcountry, she stumbles upon what might be a potential crime scene. Stuck with no communication after losing her radio and with orders to guard the site, Wendy must fight the urge to run and do the harder job of staying put — spending the night deep in the wilderness, facing down her worst fears and proving to everyone – including herself – that she’s made of stronger stuff than they think she is.