Filmmaker Question & Answer

by Phillip Wilcox "Our Movie Demon"

Lynne Hansen

 

 

DCP

Where did the story of Chomp originate from?

 

Lynne Hansen

I wanted to tell a story where I put a young guy in jeopardy instead of the stereotypical brainless young woman and see what would happen. Chomp is Misery if Annie Wilkes had wanted a zombie.

 

DCP

What was the easiest/best part of production on Chomp?

 

Lynne Hansen

Working with a team. Before I became a filmmaker, I was a novelist. You spend a lot of time alone staring at a computer screen. Making a movie is a collaborative effort, and I love that. The movie becomes so much more with everyone’s contributions. I particularly loved working with the actors. There’s something magical in the director/actor relationship.

 

DCP

What was the most challenging part of production on Chomp?

 

Lynne Hansen

Chomp is my first film, so I was on a huge learning curve at every stage. We shot on a Canon t3i that I’d owned for 6 weeks. (Thank goodness my amazing director of photography, Daryn Murphy, had tons of experience.) I didn’t have an editor or a colorist, so I taught myself both of those in post. I had no real contacts in the film industry—just filmmakers I knew as a fan. Crewing up was a horrible task because nobody knew I could make a movie except for me, so convincing talented, hard-working people to believe in me took a while. I couldn’t be happier with the results, though. I’m so tickled with the folks of Team Chomp. The movie couldn’t have happened without them.

 

DCP

What were some constraints you faced or things you went through filming in the one location?

 

Lynne Hansen

We filmed in a one car garage in a residential neighborhood. It was in the nineties most days, which was pretty miserable. One scene involves our lead actor Kyle shouting out the garage window, screaming that he was being held captive, to call 911. Nobody called. Nobody came. That was good for us, but not so good for my best friend whose house we were shooting at. How can you live in the same neighborhood for decades and not have your neighbors care if you’re in trouble?

 

DCP

What are some of your favorite style of Zombies (Romero, virus, undead, etc), and why?

 

Lynne Hansen

I love all kinds of zombies. it really depends on what works for the story. My favorite zombie movies of all time are Shaun of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead (the original), Dawn of the Dead (the remake), and Return of the Living Dead. That’s two slow zombies and two fast zombies—a dead tie. To me, zombie movies are never about the zombies—they’re about what happens when people are put in extreme situations. Who will each person become when the niceties of the world are stripped away? Who are you, down deep inside? That’s what’s interesting to me.

 

DCP

To you, how well did the cast fit into their characters, did you know right away who you wanted to cast while writing the script or did casting come after the script was finished?

 

Lynne Hansen

The only original cast member I had in mind when I was writing Chomp was Joel D. Wynkoop. He plays this wonderfully over-the-top talk show host, and in my mind, Joel was always Dr. Jon Croft. Susan O’Gara, who plays Millie, was a recommendation from my critique partner. She’d seen her in a play and showed me a video interview she’d done with Susan. She was instantly Millie. Our four-year-old little zombie girl, Ellah Durliat, came to me because I met her dad Andrew Durliat at a local film group meeting. When he showed me her business card, it was as if he’d opened up my brain and pulled out the picture of my perfect little girl—blonde hair, blue eyes, poofy dress! It was astounding. Kyle Porter, who plays Kyle, came on board as a last-minute replacement and knocked it out of the park. (I’d had to fire the original actor I’d cast because he couldn’t keep his commitments.) I was so fortunate with everyone I had on the team, and they’ve all been nominated or won acting awards for their roles in Chomp. How cool is that? I can’t imagine any other person in any of those roles. They’re exactly who I wanted, and needed, to make Chomp the film I wanted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DCP

What's next for you, as far as films and other projects go?

 

Lynne Hansen

We’re still doing film festivals with Chomp—52 and counting as of this moment. I love getting to share Chomp with people all over the world.

 

In terms of next projects, I want to do another short now that I have a better idea of what I’m doing. And then, after that, I want to make a feature. I think I’ve really found my voice in horror comedy, and that’s where I intend to stay.

 

I’m also working on a nonfiction book called Filmmaking Is For Girls—a combination how-to/inspirational filmmaking guide for middle school girls. I really think it’s important for young girls to have the tools and skills to be able to tell their stories. Each girl’s voice is important and needs to be heard. I want to help that happen.

 

 

 

 


With this cultural growing epidemic of zombie fandom and obsession, it comes to no surprise that self aware films, such as this one, will appear. And if you're going to tackle such subject matter, you better find the satire in it and approach it in a fun way. And who better to create a short satirical horror piece such as this one than Writer/Director Lynne Hansen!

This short but fun tale is about an elderly woman named Millie (Susan O'Gara) who has grown dangerously obsessed with the existence of zombies. And it's all due to the show she watches, with it's Zombie Enthusiast Host, Dr. Jon Croft (Joel D. Wynkoop). It's when he mentions the disappearance of a young man, we meet Kyle (Kyle Porter), who is mistaken for a real zombie when he's dressed and made up as one for Halloween, and then held captive - By Millie, in her garage!

 

It's real easy to find the dark satire within this movie, not to mention the absurdity in the situation, just as Kyle himself finds. But regardless of how you may feel about zombies, whether you love'em or hate'em, with the addition of cool plot twist at the end, you're bound to find this little movie fun and darkly humorous! Keep an eye out for it and check it out for yourself!

 

Phillip Wilcox "Our Movie Demon" Has reviewed Chomp

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