Hello Readers, welcome to another DireChat here on the Movie Guide Blog, I’m extremely happy to say that we have the director of Grave Encounters 2 talking to us today. Accompanying this interview, we’re going to have a video and a trailer of the film as well… Enjoy!
MG: First of all can you introduce yourself and tell us about your position on Grave Encounters 2?
JP: My name is John Poliquin and I’m the director of Grave Encounters 2.
MG: John, Can you tell us how it came to be that your where made director of Grave Encounters 2?
JP: I’ve known the Vicious Brothers for years now. I met Colin through the music video industry on the west coast. He is a legend there and after I showed him some of my first few videos he helped me get my foot in the door in that industry. Then years went by and soon I had shot 50+ music videos, and a lot of them were for the same acts that Colin had worked with. I met Stu around the time they told me that they were going to shoot a horror film. That film was Grave Encounters and it turned out to be a big success. I visited them on set of the first film and saw some of the earlier cuts. Last year the Vicious Brothers sent me the script to Grave Encounters 2 and things went from there.
MG: With the overwhelming success of Grave Encounters, what were your thoughts coming into making Grave Encounters 2?
JP: I wanted to bring my own flavor into it while keeping it in the same style and tone as what made the first one a success. I was excited for the challenge of adapting the script, which is quite unique and ambitious, into reality. Also working in the found-footage genre and keeping it true to it’s sub-genre. Shooting on cell phones, web cams and video cameras and going for gritty realism instead of going for slick cinematography was a challenge that I was excited to take.
MG: John, can you tell us in your own words what the Sypnosis of the film is?
JP: A film student who becomes obsessed with Grave Encounters begins finding clues that lead him to believe the first film is real. He convinces his friends to join him on what is to be a fun trip to shoot a documentary at the location where the first film was shot. Once they get inside, they learn that it is real. During the 3rd act of the film, we introduce a new element that is completely unexpected and very out of the box. I don’t want to give it away but let’s just say there’s almost a genre shift at that point.
MG: With the original directors, writing for this film, can you tell us what it is like to work with the Vicious Brothers?
JP: Working with the Vicious Brothers is intensely motivating. They have so many strong ideas and come from a background where you need to be clever and able to adapt to when dealing with budget and time. We became really close over the shoot and post production. We ended moving the entire edit suite from our office, which was melting due to a heat wave into Colin’s apartment to finish the film. So Colin, Stu and I spent many nights working until dawn drinking red bulls and editing hard.
MG: John, you’ve got some recognizable cast from what I’ve seen on the trailer and also researching, can you tell us a little about the process of getting the cast?
JP: The hardest role to cast for was the lead Alex Wright. We needed somebody who could be a believable film school nerd but also have the edge and star appeal the character needed. We saw tons of tapes and then Richard Harmon came in and we knew we had our guy. The others we cast also came in and we just knew when we had who we were looking for. Overall, the first round of the casting process was the hardest because I was on the east coast and was sent a hundred audition tapes to review and we had to narrow it down to our top 5 for each role without seeing anyone in person.
MG: One thing, I’m really looking forward to see is the return of Sean Rogerson who plays Lance Preston in the first, can you tell us how this came about?
JP: I believe the Vicious Brothers had always intended to continue Lance’s story into the sequel. He is a showstopper in the film and acts as a wild card to shake things up.
MG: One question that I’ve always wanted to ask is could you tell us a little about the creatures that you see on the trailer?
JP :In the trailer you see the skinny demon and the demon nurse. The skinny demon shot is actually 100% in-camera effects with prosthetics, no visual effects at all added to the screen. He is what nightmares are made of.
MG: I know that the film has just had its trailer released, I was wondering if you could tell us about the pre-production and production of the film?
JP: Pre-production was a race to the finish. We had less than a month to pull everything together, and that included re-writes on the script all the way up to the week before going to camera. We did some effect tests that didn’t work and had to re-write deaths in order to be sure they were achievable.
Production was also insane. I’ve been told that on the first film the crew had a bit more flexibility in terms of the shooting days because they shot during winter and it was dark for long hours, over 12 hours every day. We shot in summer and only had 8 hours of darkness a night. So we had to black out the lower floors of the insane asylum and shoot there when there was light outside. We also had a crazy number of stunts and effects to shoot every day. There were really no easy days and it was always a crunch against time.
Post-production was arguably the most insane of them all, with a timeline of about 2 months to ship off a completed film. Everybody worked to the brink of madness until the movie was done.
MG: Thank you taking the time out to talk to us John!
JP: No Problem, Thank you!
Thanks to John for this amazing Interview, stay tuned where going to have a video from John and also more coverage on Grave Encounters 2 and Grave Encounters.
You can keep up with all the updates on Grave Encounters 2 Facebook page at www.facebook.com/graveencounters2themovie.
You can check out John Poliquin official facebook page at www.facebook.com/JohnJPPoliquin.
Here is the Official Video Interview, from the other site that I am afflitated with Back to the Movies: