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Exclusive photos, comments: Salem witch chiller “THE INHABITANTS”

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Michael and Shawn Rasmussen, scripters of John Carpenter’s THE WARD, are in the midst of postproduction on their latest writing/directing venture, THE INHABITANTS. Read on for some exclusive words and stills from the film.

THE INHABITANTS was lensed within the Noyes-Parris House in Salem, Massachusetts, which was once owned by the infamous Rev. Samuel Parris. It was his daughter Betty Parris and his niece Abigail Williams who first made the accusations that led to the notorious witch trials. In the film, the house stands in as an old bed and breakfast that is bought by a young couple, who become plagued by a sinister presence that sets its sights on the wife. “It involves a vengeful witch, missing children and a curse on the house,” Shawn tells Fango. “We used the history of the house as a jumping-off point for our story. It’s not ‘based on actual events,’ but the film was certainly inspired by the history of the region, and the entities haunting the place are loosely based on historical figures.”

The project actually had its genesis with their producing partner Glenn Cooper, an internationally best-selling author of novels including THE LIBRARY OF THE DEAD, who owns the house. “He mentioned to us once, rather matter-of-factly, that the residence was haunted and that it would make a great setting for a ghost story,” Shawn recalls. “He then went on to tell us that the house was also a stop on the Underground Railroad and has all these hidden compartments and passageways. That sold us. We shot the film in winter 2013 with a very small cast and crew, entirely self-funded. Given the setting, we wanted to create something that had the feel of those haunted-house films from the ’70s and early ’80s, like THE CHANGELING, THE HAUNTING OF JULIA and BURNT OFFERINGS.”

Elise Couture Stone and Michael Reed (both from the Rasmussens’ previous DARK FEED; Reed also appeared in EXHUMED, THE DISCO EXORCIST and others) star in THE INHABITANTS, which Shawn is very excited about. “It’s authentically creepy and scary as hell, with terrific performances by Elise and Michael and a fabulous, haunting score. Now we want to bring THE INHABITANTS home.” For this purpose, the Rasmussens and Cooper have set up an Indiegogo page to raise financing for delivery and marketing of the movie. Check it out here; perks range from T-shirts and DVD packages to one-of-a-kind items used in the film. “Who wouldn’t want their very own Skeletal Infant, Tooth-Encrusted Charm or Birthing Chair?” See a teaser trailer below the pics and visit the movie on Facebook.

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About the author
Michael Gingold
Michael Gingold has been a member of the FANGORIA team for the past three decades. After starting as a writer for the magazine in 1988, he came aboard as associate editor in 1990 and two years later moved up to managing editor. He now serves as editor-in-chief of the magazine while continuing to contribute numerous articles and reviews, as well as a contributing editor/writer for this website.
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