“RAZOR DAYS” with Debbie Rochon sets premiere; exclusive comments, new posterMovies/TV,News Michael Gingold
It’s been a long road to the unveiling of the revenge shocker RAZOR DAYS for writer/director Mike Watt and producer/actress Amy Lynn Best, but their sixth feature with Happy Cloud Pictures is finally world-premiering this week. Read on for info on the screening, the latest poster, the trailer and comments from Watt.
RAZOR DAYS, which screens this Friday, February 20 at 7 p.m. at the Hollywood Theater in Dormont, PA, stars Best, Debbie Rochon and Bette Cassatt (1st photo below, left to right) as three women who have been victimized by men and team up to hunt down their tormentors. “This is a script that had evolved for about six or seven years” prior to its production, Watt (2nd photo below with Rochon) tells Fango. “In fact, I think we first announced the film to FANGORIA back in 2004 or 2005, before that go-round fell through. We wanted to tell a very small, intimate story about survivors—initially, we described it as ‘THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, five minutes later.’ What happens to horror-movie survivor girls? How do they deal with that kind of trauma? How do they go on with their lives, or do they?
“Our main characters have coped with their experiences in very different ways,” he continues. “One has channeled her anger and fear into teaching women’s self-defense, and the other two seem to have gone off the deep end. I say ‘seem’ because each of them will change her perspective as the film goes on. In the end, it’ll be up to the audience to decide which of them, if any, chose the right path toward ‘healing’—if that term can even apply here.”
This naturalistic, psychological focus, Watt says, sets RAZOR DAYS apart from many similarly themed movies, in which vengeance storylines are simply an excuse to wallow in violence. “This movie isn’t about the kill scenes—though there are some rough ones,” he promises. “This is about three very real women—none of whom is presented as simply a man with tits and a gun, as you get too often—particularly from Hollywood—when dealing with very complicated situations. Nothing in RAZOR DAYS is cut-and-dried.”
The cast also includes Alan Rowe Kelly (who additionally served as a producer), David Marancik, Michael Varrati and DEADTIME STORIES director Jeff Monahan. On the makeup and FX front, the scarred visage of Rochon’s character Jessamay was created by SORORITY ROW’s Gino Crognale, with other FX courtesy of BABYLON 5’s Jerry Gergely and special makeup handled by Scott Conner. VINDICATION director Bart Mastronardi served as cinematographer, Scooter McCrae of SHATTER DEAD and SIXTEEN TONGUES provided the score and “the movie was made possible by Sirens of Cinema publisher and executive producer Bob Kuiper and his RAK Media,” Watt says. “Corporate sponsorship also came unexpectedly from ThinkGeek.com.
“What was unique about this shoot for us also made it a bit grueling,” the writer/director continues. “For the first time, we had a budget that made it possible to shoot nearly two weeks straight, starting on Good Friday. We returned to Laurel Caverns for a day to shoot all the ‘hyper-real’ sequences—Jessamay’s flashbacks and the climax—and Bart lit it so it looked like they were all in hell at the end. And in a sense, they were.
“And while we’ve never really dipped into the same well twice with any of our movies, this was an utterly weird departure for us,” Watt adds, referring to Happy Cloud’s previous fantastical and/or satire-oriented movies like A FEAST OF FLESH, SEVERE INJURIES and DEMON DIVAS AND THE LANES OF DAMNATION. “Particularly me, because I couldn’t rely on gimmicks or gags this time around. Without vampires and demons sending the story into more comfortable fantasy territory, it was important that I was at my best as well. Fortunately, to paraphrase John Huston, most of the director’s job is finished with the casting. Trust the actors to bring the characters to life; all you really have to do is adjust here and there. And I couldn’t have asked for a better trio of leads. Actually, I couldn’t have asked for a better crew or overall production. The film gods were really on our side for this one, praise Cinemagog.”