Robert Poole is a man who loves him some horror. Like most horror fans he never settled with just what the major studio’s had to offer and would search conventions and bargain bins alike looking for a fresh voice in a muffled genre. The problem came when Poole not just found these movies ( with the internet being what it is I’m sure it was a short journey. Granted it probably depends on how many cute cat videos you get sucked into. Damn you Youtube!) but being that he had no way to view them. As with most of us when faced with a dilemma, Robert turned quickly to the internet and decided to start Indiehorror.tv. A website that would stream the best the indie horror genre had to offer (Basically, he decided to do what porn did in the 90’s just without the full penetration…). Within a year Robert has screened groundbreaking films and feature some of the best upcoming talent the genre has seen in years. With the 1 year anniversary right around the corner Robert and crew decided to do what horror fans do best and throw a huge horror movie party ( Happening 11-16-2013 CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS!). 2 features (Dead Weight and Found) 6 shorts ( Feature SJP favorite The Other- Check out my review of it by CLICKING HERE) and a rock concert is a hell of a way to say thanks to all the fans. Robert was cool enough to take time out of his day and call into SJP headquarters to chat about Indiehorror.tv, Hellraiser and the totally bitching anniversary party.
Slack Jaw Punks: Thanks for calling. I love your website [Indiehorror.tv]. I first came across it when you guys were showing Motivation Growth.
Robert Poole: Yeah Motivational Growth is AMAZING. I love that film.
SJP: Yeah it was one I’ve been trying to check out for a while. A few weeks back Motivational Growth announced on their Facebook page Indiehorror.tv was streaming the film and I fell in love. Horror movies, interviews… it’s a T.V. station on your laptop.
RP: The original concept was just “Let’s stream some films!’ and it kind of got bigger and bigger as time went on as far as the commitment level and time we have to put into it. It’s been a fun ride over the last year.
SJP: How long have you guys been doing the site?
RP: We started November 1st, that was our launch date. To be honest we have been streaming movies amongst friends. We started doing that in July 2011. That’s kind of how I knew it wouldn’t be that hard to stream movies. The first time we came up with the concept really was when I went to HorrorHound weekend in Indianapolis in September of 2012. I was hanging out with a lot of the independent film makers, which is kind of the deal for me. I would pay for the nostalgia and you get 20 second with any of those people [convention media guests]. So after you got your pictures what the hell are you doing all weekend long? I would find myself in the vendor rooms hanging around all the indie guys and it just so happened that one of the guys from my home town just so happened to have a film out and was there. John Pata who is a co-director of Dead Weight was there. We got to talking and I started to realize that independent film makers have to go through hell and high water to get people to see their stuff. Aside from conventions here or there and film festivals, if your area even has one, there’s really no way to get your stuff out there. After that first year it’s gone. No one even knows it existed and you are on to your next project. I thought that sucked. No one was fighting for these guys. They go and sign a deal with a distributor, that often times don’t really back the film and limit the film makers options even more as to where the movie can be seen. No one really fights for indie film maker. I had market experience ( working with Google) and working with buycostumes.com ( which is the biggest Halloween vendor). I had the experience and I was like “Let’s come up with a way to do something for these people!”.
SJP: It’s a brilliant idea. There are so many cool movies out there that ( I know I’m not alone) a lot of people want to see and horror movie fans have no way to get a hold of them and that sort of answers my next question: Why the horror genre?
RP: There is a lot of independent films otherwise that I’m sure are going through the same type of process, but my passion is horror. It’s always been like that ever since I was a kid. I remember being around 6 years old when I watched the Exorcist for the first time. I went to Nightmare on Elm Street 4 in 1988 in the theater when I was 10 years old. It’s something I always loved. It’s easier for me to connect with a horror film maker first. obviously we have similar passions. There’s not a circle of film makers like the horror genre, well obviously there is, but it’s not like: ” Hey, let’s go to the Indie Drama Convention!’. I feel like everything on the internet is down to a niche and this is our niche.
SJP: I don’t think the word indie applies to other genres the way it does to horror. Cloud Atlas, which I enjoyed, was an independent movie. A 100 million dollar independent movie. It’s ridiculous. When you hear the word indie you think of credit cards getting maxed out, parents basements getting trashed and first time directors begging friends for help. Not Tom Hanks and Halle Berry with a million dollar marketing campaign….
RP: That’s also a big question mark. The origination of the concept of indie is different from what it was even a few years ago when you still had to have access to expensive equipment that was hard to get a hold of. You had to have a certain level of training to know how to use the equipment if you were lucky to get your hands on some. That kind of thing doesn’t happen anymore with the digital world that we are living in. You can a really nice professional level camera for a few hundred bucks. You can do all the editing on your Mac and it doesn’t take much money to put something together. The point of entry has widened and there is some incredible talent that now has the ability to get in that before might have been stifled by that.
SJP: What is your favorite horror movie. If you had to take one flick on the desert island which movie would it be?
RP: That’s so hard. I would have to say the one horror film I watch the most. The one that really kind of inspires me is Hellraiser. Nightmare on Elm Street 3 was a huge inspiration on me as far as how creatively out of the box a horror film can be. At that time you had Jason and Michael Myers and they are pretty much straight walk at you killer and then with NOES 3 you had this crazy dream world. I thought Hellraiser took that to a whole other degree. There was this whole entire inner world that could exists on both planes wether it’s a dream world or the real world (which they expand further on in the series). There was this whole other area that works off your fears, it works off your everyday process and the box was the opening to the deepest darkest most craziest recesses of your mind. It played with not knowing if something was painful or pleasurable because that line is so finite. I always thought that was incredible. Clive Barker sucked me in with that one. The Hellraiser series isn’t as good passed part 2…
SJP: I disagree with you! They only got better with time….
RP: Do you like Hellworld? I’m not sure I’ve ever met anyone who likes that one!
SJP: [Laughing] No way! I’m just fucking with you! What was the one in Mexico?
RP: Oh yeah! The non-Doug Bradley one! [Laughing]
SJP: That’s like making Nightmare on Elm Street without Robert England!
RP: And they’ve done it! [Laughing] Nothing Hollywood won’t sacrifice.
SJP: As long as it will turn a buck. They do not care! Okay, tell us about this party?
RP: Like I said it’s been a year since the [Indiehorror.tv] launched and we said we need to have a party that would kind of show off some of the films we have shown and get it out to the public. Let people know about this amazing thing we are doing and let them be apart of it. There’s a promoter in me from way back. I’ve promoted rock concert and wrestling shows and I combined all the concepts I’ve learned and throw together this big ass party. Take all the things that would block you from going to a party out of it. Free admission. No we are not going to make you pay to come to the party. Just come and enjoy yourselves. We made sure that food was not going to be an issue. We got Bella Italia pizza and pasta out of Ann Arbor, they actually sponsored all of the food. FOOD IS COVERED! We’ll handle all the soda, all the water. There is a cash bar for anyone who wants to partake in alcohol. Hopefully that’s increasingly but whatever! Entertainment, that’s all covered too! We got 2 featured length films, 6 short films and we have a free concert from HorrorHound Records artist Harley Poe who is going to be playing at the end of the night. THAT”S NOT ENOUGH! WHAT ELSE IS GOING TO MAKE YOU WANT TO COME TO A PARTY!?!? LET’S BRIBE PEOPLE! We are putting together gift bags for people. Which will have various swag from the different film makers. We are also throwing Zombie Blast Energy Shots. Right now you can only find those on ThinkGeek.com. They are 3 for $9.99 and everyone gets one. We’ve got DVDs in some of the bags all sorts of neat stuff. We went to Nathan Thomas Milliner, designs most of the Scream Factory Blu Ray covers and asked him to put together some of the art print that showcases some of the characters of Indiehorror.tv over the last year and he did! So we are throwing in some of those posters. We got 11×17 posters we are throwing in some of the bags as wells. We got a ton of stuff. Plus; Door Prizes. Everybody loves door prizes. Dustin Mills is an amazing director. We got 10 copies of his brand new film: The Ballad of Skinless Pete. We got a bunch of awesome door prizes!
SJP: Tell us about the director Q&As.
RP: We’ll probably have a panel of 7-10 directors including: Dustin Mills and John Pata. Shawn Burkett is going to be there he’s the director of Bludgeon. Ryan Stacy who directed Midsummers Nightmare is going to be there.We do this really cool feature called Director’s Chat. When you’re watching a movie and anything pops into your head, you finally get to ask it. How many times do you get to do that? There will be myself and Janet Jay, who is a horror host from Cleveland she’s going to be co-hosting with me. We will guide a couple of questions or two, but ultimately it’s for the audience! It’s horror fans chance to interact with the directors, live!