Manny Camacho chats with writer-director Joe Lynch…
Flickering Myth received an opportunity to sit with Joe Lynch, the Writer and Producer of Everly, which releases August 10th on DVD and Blu-ray.
I had seen this film when it had just released on VOD, earlier this year, as it only had a very limited theatrical release and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was dark, bloody, and full of gory twists. I wasn’t quite sure where to categorize it as a film? But I was certain I needed more popcorn to watch its story unfold.
Interviewing Joe was a treat and I got to understand his process for filmmaking, his love of the medium, and what we’re likely to expect from him in the future.
Flickering Myth Manny: Good morning Joe, I wanted to go over Everly but I also wanted to briefly go over some of your film background for our audience to get to know you better.
Joe Lynch: Oh thank you Emanuel! I’ll be as brief as I possibly can in my answers.
FMM: Awesome—you can call me Manny by the way—no need for formality.
JL: Hi Manny!
FMM: You’ve been building your career in the horror genre for quite some time, recently with work on a film called Ghoul. Which released earlier this year and I thought that was an interesting story to put on film; especially as found footage with it involving a true story about cannibalism…
JL: Cannibalism, Chikatilo…and it’s like really tapping into some real shit!
FMM: Tell me a little bit about it as its Producer.
JL: I actually […] the short story of it is, I saw the trailer that Peter Jákl put online and I was blown away.
“I was like what the fuck is this!”
This is right at the beginning of the real renaissance of found footage. So I was like bro This is cool. Plus he was saying that this was in 3D. Alright, I need to see a 3D found-footage movie [you know]!
I net him [Peter Jákl] through my producing partner Luke Rivett. Who also produced Everly. He had seen it and said you should check this out so I watched it and sent him my thoughts—I hope you don’t mind, but here are a couple of thoughts and I sent it to him [Peter Jákl] and he wrote back—can we talk more? That started a 1-2 year relationship with Peter. We’d sit down, we’d watch the movie. I’d just give him my thoughts and shockingly he’d go back and shoot it. This was the sort of thing where I’d say maybe if you had a shot of this, wouldn’t it be cool if you had that? He’d go back and the shoot the fucking thing! It was crazy!
The guy would go out and shoot it! That usually doesn’t happen. He would recraft that movie over the course of two years and it got better and better. Weirdly enough […] a very small coincidence, the same company that produced Everly, Vega Baby, had released Ghoul theatrically! So it’s a weird small world when that happens. But maybe [I don’t even remember] maybe I mentioned it on the set of Everly and Adam Rip heard about it. Who knows.
What I liked about [Ghoul] is that it’s unfortunate that people haven’t been able to see it in 3D. Because it was fucking amazing! It was a bummer that it didn’t get seen here [in 3D]. But there were just so many great human emotions that I really dug and it scared the crap out of me twice! So any movie that can do that…I’m like, alright I’m in! Cannibals just kind of freak me out already so it definitely had me. I’m really proud of that movie and proud of Peter. He’s been with that thing for years. To see it actually come out and win awards in Europe like that is a testament to his perseverance. He’s a true artist.
FMM: It definitely was a great eerie film.
JL: Yeah…It did its job
FMM: Creepy as all hell. Coming from the US where we’re surrounded by all kinds of films trying to be creepy.
JL: [laughs] and creepy people!
FMM [laughs]: Yeah, I would say better yet creepy people not so many creepy films. Ghoul really hits the spot well. Especially with more of an unknown character. People hear you say cannibalism and they think Jeffrey Dahmer, or they might go in another direction, or perhaps they think Ed Geins–Texas Chainsaw Massacre. But Ghoul was really out there.
JL: Yeah because it felt like it was real. It felt like: Oh my god! Because of the famine, people had to eat. It wasn’t […] who am I to talk. But it’s not a bunch of hillbillies in West Virginia eating people and shit like that. That would be totally unrealistic—No one wants to watch that!
FMM: Even though it was a horror movie and I saw Ghoul before I knew I had a chance to interview you. To me it kind of had a similar…let me put it this way, it hit me in the same way Alive hit me. Alive wasn’t a horror movie but Alive was so screwed up…
JL: No, It’s survival horror.
FMM: …it’s visceral…it was visceral…
FMM: I felt a very similar set of emotions when I was watching Ghoul and I was wondering what the hell was going on for it to cause such a strong response.
JL: I totally agree!
FMM: Definitely a very visceral set of emotions.
FMM: Phenomenal. So now before we get to Everly. I’m a big old school horror film and B-Movie horror fanatic. As big as you—well, maybe not as big as you. But I love the genre and all things horror in general…
JL: We park our cars in the same garage.
FMM: Yeah, pretty much. Now–you got your break and I didn’t realize this until I looked up some of your information and other credits. I got a good giggle out of it when I realized you worked on Terror Firmer. I remembered your character popping up in most of the scenes and the naked run through time square. I thought to myself oh god I love Terror Firmer.
JL: [laughs] Yes I totally did! Being a Troma fan, working with them on my first movie out of film school was a dream come true. You know […]
“being able to go there and make such an impression because of hard work and dedication and I didn’t eat shit like everybody else…I just went Fucking-A! I love being here!”
That’s where Lloyd saw a little bit of promise. I went from being a grip on week one, to a background director week two, actually week one I was a grip, week two I was a clothespin boy which I’m in every single fucking shot of the fucking movie. Seriously!
FMM: [laughter] Right!
JL: There should be a drinking game where every time you see me–you take a shot. You’ll be drunk in five minutes. Seriously, by the third week I was background director, by the fourth week I was helping on the writing, and then on the fifth week Lloyd offered me a job as one of the writers after James Gunn left. They needed one or two more writers. Me and the guy who runs naked through time square, Yaniv, who were college buddies in Syracuse. We ended up getting hired as writers. It was amazing.
I learned so much from Troma. You might have $.59 cents and a roll of duct tape. But you can still make a movie. It doesn’t have to be good. But Lloyd has been a friend of mine since.
FMM: Now, would you say that Terror Firmer got you your big break or was it more Wrong Turn 2: Dead End?
JL: Oh Wrong Turn 2 without a doubt I had created a metal show that led to me doing a lot of metal shows when I came out to LA.
I did one metal video in particular for Strapping Young Lad, called Love, which was an homage to the Evil Dead. If you haven’t seen that video, go now and give it a look, you’ll say holy shit it’s fucking Evil Dead! Someone at Fox saw that and figured [he must know about horror] and they had an open spot to fill for Wrong Turn 2 and I went for it. I really liked the first one and had to go for it! I absolutely adore horror movies and I completely saw this movie as a complete throw back to 80’s splatter movies. I went into Nakatomi plaza with a 30 page bible of everything I would do and the entire opening scene which was not in the script the way that I shot it. It was right at the point where she was supposed to be split in half. They cut…
“I was like are you fucking kidding me! You got to show that! I want to see…I want to see entrails coming out of vaginas!”
JL: [Laughing] They had said I got the job. Wrong Turn 2 was an amazing experience I never, in a million years, would have thought it got the notice it did. And has now. It still is one of their top DVD sellers. It’s insane. It started the franchise and after that it went crazy. That movie opened so many doors for me and because it was under the radar. I don’t think people assumed it would be any good. When they saw it they thought it was better than they expected and it got me in the room.
Joe and I took a brief intermission at this point because we started our interview late as he was held up. However, we had built such great rapport and he had such amazing things to say about his previous projects, and his current films, I was excited when he asked if we could do another Skype call to continue without as many time constraints. I was enthralled with his down-to-earth manner. I was already a fan of his work and I wanted to get more insight into his other projects—especially Everly–which would be releasing in a few days on DVD and Blu-ray.
Part two of this interview will be available soon. For now I hope you’ve enjoyed this momentary glimpse into Joe Lynch’s work. If you haven’t seen Everly or Ghoul, they are both currently available on iTunes and Amazon Prime. Terror Firmer you can pick up at the Troma Shop, or view it on YouTube, as many of Troma’s films are freely distributed online.
In part two we’ll be talking about Joe’s series Holliston, working with horror legend Sid Haig on Thirsty; some of the tragedy he faced recently, and of course Everly!
Manny Camacho is a Miami, Florida based award winning writer and award winning independent film producer whose current novel, I Think? No, I’m Sure…God Hates Me, is available on Amazon. His next Novel, Life | Face | Punch, releases September 2015. Follow him on Twitter @EmanuelFCamacho and on Facebook