Horror Director Talks about His First Movie

Horror Director Talks about His First Movie

by Jason Harris

Writer and director Eric England talks about Madison County, his first horror movie; his first movie ever.

England said that this is his version of “a backwoods slasher movie.”

“I wanted to do something that was faithful to all the films that had come before it, but also tries to stand on its own two feet.”

He drew inspiration from several different places, including things that had happened to him and from the local legends he was aware of in Arkansas, where he filmed Madison County.

The idea for England’s movie came to him when he was 14, he said. He wrote the script back in 2009 and the movie was released last year.

“The idea for Madison County had been sitting in my brain for years before I ever sat down to put it on paper.”

He is planning a follow-up to his $75,000 first movie, and this time he will give audiences more of prolific serial killer Damien Ewell’s history.

“I always planned for Madison County to be part of a much bigger picture. I don’t want to beat people over the head with exposition, but I’ll definitely hint at information about his origins,” England said about his movie.

His serial killer is not a supernatural being under that mask, he said.

“He’s 100 percent a human being. If you cut him, he bleeds. If you hit him with a shovel, he goes down. Under the pig head, he’s just a man.”

It took him under two years from the written word to filming. He had gone through almost 10 different producers and teams of producers before the finished product came to be.

“A lot of promises were made and never made good on, so I eventually went off and made a little experimental movie called Hostile Encounter in November of 2009.”

His experimental short inspired producer Daniel Dunn to find financing for film to make “a bigger film which was ultimately Madison County.”

There are many movies that have inspired England.

“My favorite movie of all time is Scream. I like a lot of really weird movies. Everything from The Sound of Music to Last House on the Left to American Pie. It’s hard to pinpoint where my brain gets inspiration from.”

Along with favorite movies, he has some favorite directors that include Alfred Hitchcock, Wes Craven, Quentin Tarantino, and David Fincher. He also likes Tim Burton’s older stuff.

He is currently working on a few projects, the Hitchcockian thriller Roadside and a psychological-horror-sex-thriller called Contracted. He also attached to direct a studio film, which he couldn’t talk about.

“I’m kind of a workaholic.”

Editor’s Note:
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The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo to be Released Early on December 20


CULVER CITY, Calif., December 13, 2011 – Moviegoers will get a jump on one of the most highly-anticipated films of the season as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo opens one day early beginning on December 20 at 7 p.m. nationwide, it was announced today by Jeff Blake, chairman, Worldwide Marketing and Distribution for Sony Pictures.
Commenting on the announcement, Blake said, “This is one of the busiest times of the year for moviegoing and we can’t wait to share this outstanding thriller with audiences all over the world. We feel that by opening for night-time shows on December 20th, fans of the book will be given the perfect opportunity to get a jump start on the release of an exceptional film.” In The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Academy Award®-nominated director David Fincher (The Social Network) uncoils the world of Stieg Larsson’s global blockbuster thriller on the screen. Within the story’s labyrinth lie murder, corruption, family secrets and the inner demons of the two unexpected partners chasing the truth of a 40-year-old mystery. Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig) is a financial reporter determined to restore his honor after being convicted of libel. Engaged by one of Sweden’s wealthiest industrialists, Henrik Vanger (Academy Award® nominee Christopher Plummer), to get to the bottom of the long-ago disappearance of his beloved niece, Harriet – murdered, Vanger believes, by a member of his large family – the journalist heads to a remote island on the frozen Swedish coast, unaware of what awaits him. At the same time, Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara), an unusual but ingenious investigator with Milton Security, is hired to do a background check on Blomkvist, a job that ultimately leads to her joining Mikael in his investigation of who killed Harriet Vanger. Though Lisbeth shields herself from a world that has repeatedly betrayed her, her hacking skills and single-minded focus become invaluable. While Mikael goes face-to-face with the tight-lipped Vangers, Lisbeth plies the wired shadows. They begin to trace a chain of homicides from the past into the present, forging a fragile strand of trust even as they are pulled into the most savage currents of modern crime. The screenplay is by Steven Zaillian, based on the book by Stieg Larsson originally published by Norstedts. The producers are Scott Rudin, Ole Søndberg, Søren Stærmose, and Ceán Chaffin. The film is presented by Columbia Pictures and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures. About Sony Pictures Entertainment Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; worldwide television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 142 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.sonypictures.com.