Creature features are an ever-popular sub-genre of horror movies and High Octane Productions is continuing this trend via "Gremlin" which is due to be released next month. The movie contains lots of cool computer-generated special effects as it chronicles the misadventures of Adam Thatcher, a father grieving the loss of his son, after he receives a mysterious box that contains a horrifying secret. Namely, an evil gremlin. Filmmaker Ryan Bellgardt recently discussed the film which is being produced with High Octane Pictures.

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Movie 

Blasting News (BN): What put you on the path to becoming a Director?

Ryan Bellgardt (RB): In 2006, I was performing a puppet show with my wife for kids in libraries. Someone saw it and thought it would make a good kid’s TV show. We pitched it to Disney but it never landed anywhere. I used the audio from the pilot in “Gremlin” as background noise of a show that one of our characters is watching. Because of that project, I started being hired as a freelance producer and director.

In 2012 I tackled a feature length film.

BN: What was the “big break” as you see it?

RB: When we were approached by our sales agent ,Galen Christy, at High Octane Pictures during the post production of our first movie, “Army of Frankensteins”. He offered to represent it and it was off to the races from there. Galen was very encouraging and helped educate me on the business side of making Movies. He heavily influenced what we did on “Gremlin.”

BN: How did you get involved with “Gremlin”?

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RB: My plans for another movie fell through. I wrote a ten page script called, “Give it To Someone You Love”. We were just making it for fun. Then Galen asked me if I could make a feature version. I wrote the script in January of this year.

BN: Is it easier or harder working with effects?

RB: It depends on how well planned out the effects are. I’ve been working with CG as a hobby for about ten years. The hardest part about it is the time it takes in post.

I took advantage of an online, cloud based render farm.  There’s almost 200 shots of the Gremlin in the movie and we mixed the CG effects with practical effects like blood, dust, slime, etc.

BN: Where was the film shot? 

RB: It was shot entirely in Oklahoma. The big house in the movie is called the Overholser Mansion and we shot the interiors of the house at a bed and breakfast called the Grandison Inn. I love shooting in Oklahoma because everyone is so friendly and the Oklahoma Film Commission was very helpful in securing permits and locations.

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There were a lot of police scenes in the movie and they made sure we didn’t get arrested when we were running around neighborhoods pointing fake guns up into the sky at an imaginary monster!

BN: What films or filmmakers influenced the movie?  

RB: I’m a child of the 80’s so I’ve grown up on John Carpenter, Ridley Scott, Steven Spielberg and guys like that and I think maybe, subconsciously or not, that feeling of adventure that those guys provide in their films is something I always try to put it our movies. I’m also influenced by Sci-Fi novels.

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Goals 

BN: Where do you want to be in ten years?

RB: My hope is to continue to make movies and get better. I want to grow our amazing team. It would be cool to share our experiences with other filmmakers and help them get their movies sold.

BN: What's coming up?

RB: We’re already hard at work on our third feature titled, “The Jurassic Games”! It’s a full-on dinosaur movie.

BN: What advice can you offer aspiring movie makers?

RB: My advice is to just go out and make your movie. Be tireless and relentless. Be nice to the people who you surround yourself with and make sure they are better than you.

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