Poster made by: Peter Ryberg Larsen
This interview was conducted by Avery Frawley through e-mail in September 2011. Thanks a lot Avery & Tim for letting my publish this awsome interview with the team behind The Last Tape, a new Horror movie coming later this year from the land of Gore, Germany.
Avery Frawley: Thanks to you! I appreciate your time and candor!
Thanks a lot for the interview, Avery! We appreciate what you do and have done for us and our project!
AF: First off, what got you into horror films? What inspired you to make your own film?
Isabelle Fitzgerald: My interest for horror movies has come to life when I was a teen. Films like „Ginger Snaps“ and „Halloween“ have started it all. Inspiriration came later, from diverse amateur movies. You want to create something on your own and try out how far you can go.
Johannes Kluger: The first spark has probably been the „Troll“-Movies my mother has recorded on VHS for me when I was a child, believing they were fantasy-films. Anyhow, I’m more of a person that’s generally interested in movies than a horror-fan.
Tim Rabenstein: It all started in my earliest childhood – when I was seven and my class was learning the alphabet, we had to write a short story... mine was a scary tale about a costume party that hadn’t been visited by costumed horror figures only. The first hobby I remember has been collecting images out of TV-magazines, showing stills from horror movies and everything else creepy or gory; this was when I was still in elementary school, too. A little later, when I was about twelve years old, I started collecting horror movies on VHS, which my grandmother recorded for me. And so it went on – you could say I’ve been growing up with this hobby, if I haven’t been born for it.
My inspiration for making my own movie? It’s the standard answer: I want to move people, change them, distract them from everyday’s problems, make them enjoy themselves; I want to move myself, change myself, distract myself from everyday’s problems, make me enjoy myself. Furthermore, I think of cinema as the perfect medium, my medium. I used to be a “music-affectionate” person, and even though I still love music, I nowadays prefer films a little.
AF: When did you begin production of The Last Tape?
The first serious thought about our own movie came up in winter 2009/2010. At the 20.02.2010, our first meeting took place, with the group of people working on the project still changing until we had our team together.
AF: Who’s your favorite director, horror film, and otherwise?
I.F.: While there are various movies that have moved and shaped me, there isn’t one single director I especially prefer. A short list of films: Ginger Snaps, Water Ship Down, Halloween, Rob Zombie’s Halloween, The Last Unicorn.
J.K.: I like Lynch, Kubrick, Noé, Nolan, Fincher, but also Gregg Araki, Gus van Sant, Lars von Trier, Jim Jarmush and many more. I like older films and German films, too, so I have to mention Wim Wenders, Ingmar Bergman and Fritz Lang.
T.R.: There is no single favourite, but there are some directors whose movies I buy without thinking about it: David Lynch, Andreas Bethmann, Gaspar Noé, Stanley Kubrick, Rob Zombie, Darren
Aronofsky, Lucio Fulci and a few more.
AF: Do you collect horror and cult films on various home video formats?
I.F.: Not so much until now, I’m more interested in books and paintings.
J.K.: I’m not much of a movie-collector. You should see my library, though…
T.R.: You could say so. I lovingly collect DVD’s, I always try to get the release with most special content on it. Plus, I don’t have stopped collecting VHS’s.
AF: Whose movies influences do you attribute to the production of The Last Tape?
J.K.: Wild at Heart, Party Monster, Enter the Void, Elephant and many, many more.
T.R.: There is no way I could answer this question – you know, all the movies you have seen (whether you’ve liked them or not) influence a project like ours.
AF: Do you hope to one day reach the ranks of such film makers as Andreas Schnaas, Andreas Bethmann or Jorg Buttgereit?
J.K.: In Germany, we use to say: Hope is the last thing that dies.
T.R.: Let me answer it this way: Personally, I don’t care about how many people are going to like our movie and how many people are going to hate it. To me, it is important for a “fan-community” to build up, people who follow our work out of interest, who judge it and who appreciate what we do. Furthermore, I like movies that polarise – which means: Whoever loves and supports my art has my gratitude, but so does whoever critizes it in a meaningful way. I don’t give a fuck about everyone else.
AF: What do you hope to accomplish with the release of your film, and subsequent future films?
J.K.: To me, it’s about self-realization through the arts and about having fun. Money and fame may not be unwanted, but to me, they aren’t important.
T.R.: Another one of those questions… firstly, I’d like to create a sanctuary for people, take them into another world. Furthermore, there are some philosophical thoughts in TLT which are worth being contemplated. Whoever is able to say: “The movie gave me something” (be it an escape from everyday’s routine or some “wisdom of life”) also shows me that I have reached my goal.
AF: How would you describe your artistic process? Do you even approach your work with an artistic feeling?
I.F.: By all means, yes. I think that every way of implementing your thoughts, be it through writing, sound or images, shows an artistic vein. Progress? Well, I realize that the team of TLT starts every day of shooting a little more organized than the one before. I think that this is a huge progress.
J.K.: TLT is our first movie, as you know, so, there is a huge progress noticeable throughout the shooting process. Being amateurs, our goal has always been to make the best of our script. While there hasn’t been an artistic approach by means of a certain image we had in our minds before shooting a scene at all times, it has been there quite often.
T.R.: By all means, yes. To me, creating a movie is one single creative process, from the beginning to the end. Of course, having fun is most important – having fun being creative.
About “progress”: It’s our first movie, so we’ve started with a tiny bit of half knowledge, which is becoming an adept, experienced basic knowledge slowly but surely.
AF: T.R., you’re a fan of Necrophagia and various death metal groups. Is there a way in which you’ve incorporated your love for music in your film?
J.K.: I appreciate Neofolk and there will be some songs in the movie, so, yes.
T.R.: It’s half-true: Necrophagia simply are a really awesome band with nice and freaky people, whose music impresses me like fuck. I don’t have much else to do with Death Metal, really – I just think that Necrophagia manage to create music with the atmosphere of a good Horror-/Splattermovie. Oh, before I forget: Thanks a lot to the German band Eisregen – not really a death metal band, but there are references – at this place: For their music, their lyrics and for being extremely close to their fans, which is something you don’t have a lot nowadays.
It’s quite a common fact among film fans that the soundtrack of a movie can judge it as nearly the only judge – to answer your question: Yes, we have been able to incorporate our love for music into our movie – a big thank you to all the bands and musicians who have contributed to TLT in such a brilliant way! You know who is meant.
AF: What do you think is in the future of you? Any new projects?
At the moment, we’re trying to keep our thoughts in the here and now, and while there isn’t much we can already tell you: Yes, new projects are being planned, ideas for short movies await their realization as much as ideas for our next full-timer.
AF: When do you suspect the first film, The Last Tape, to be completed?
If everything works as we wish, in the middle/at the end of 2012.
AF: Any special plans for a release? You’re based in Germany, which is where hartboxes (hardboxes) are made, any plans for a special limited edition hardbox? Also abroad, here in the U.S, VHS seems to be making a comeback, with all the recent VHS re-releases coming about, are there any plans for such an edition?
While we’d really like to release limited hardboxes and VHS’s, the latter being very fitting as regards to the content of the movie, the choice will probably not be ours (for the time being, at least).
AF: Thank you all! I appreciate the answers you’ve given me! I’m sure the fans will do that, too!
Thank you, again!
Links: Facebook, The Last Tape