Mickey Keating Interview

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Welcome guys and girls! I’m fortunate enough to be joined today by young, up and coming filmmaker, Mickey Keating, whose here to talk with me about all things film in the lead up to the release of his latest feature film, “Carnage Park”.

Adam:

Hey Mickey!  Thanks for joining me on Adamthemoviegod today, How are you? Busy I imagine?

Mickey:

I’m good! Thanks for having me.

Adam:

The first question I wanted to ask you is what inspired you to start Writing and Directing and was your sort of half film (for lack of a better word), “Ultra Violence” in 2011, your initial introduction to the business?

Mickey:

Since I was very young, I was always dead-set on making movies. I never really stopped filming and most of those early shorts are unwatchable. Ultra Violence was just a student film I made in college that I can’t get off my IMDb (laughs).

Adam:

I haven’t actually seen it yet but in 2013 you made Ritual, your first feature-length film. What was that experience like and what was the biggest take away from the process that you’ve then been able to apply to your recent work?

Mickey:

We made Ritual with such a small amount of money that we could only shoot on weekends because nobody could afford to quit their day jobs. It was beneficial, in a way, because we would film for two days, edit during the week, and see if we needed to shoot any additional footage. Every film is a learning experience, and Ritual taught me that if you’re burning to tell a story, you just have to find a way to do it no matter what!

Adam:

2015 was a busy year for you, making both the Horror/Sci-fi film, “Pod” and the truly mesmerizing Horror/Thriller, “Darling”. I noticed that Actors like Larry Fessenden, Brian Morvant and Dean Cates appear in more than one of your films. Have you almost become a kind of tight-knit family with those guys? Was using them a conscious decision in the casting process or were the characters just suited to them?

Mickey:

I think building a level of trust with an actor allows you to try lots of new things with each project. It’s very exciting to see how many characters a single person can portray! I try to write for who I know – it becomes more authentic in a way. If there’s an actor I really enjoy working with, I’ll try to cast them in every movie I make!

Adam:

So I have to ask, What are some of your favorite films? Because when I look at your body of work thus far I see a wide range of influences. Sure, most of it seems grounded somewhere in Horror but all of it appearing to be different in tone.

Mickey:

It always changes, but Rosemary’s Baby, Taxi Driver, Boogie Nights, Barton Fink, Blue Velvet and Nashville seem to always be in my brain.

Adam:

Let’s get back to Darling for a minute shall we. This type of film is all too rare and seems like something that can only be made if you’re genuinely interested in all facets of film making, Would that be a correct assumption? I say that because the meticulous attention to detail in your approach to this film, in regards to creating atmosphere and tension is second to none and hands down the best I’ve seen. In my opinion the film is the definition of a perfect film. If you spent enough time on my site looking over my reviews, reading the ratings, you’d realize I don’t really believe in “perfect” films (for the most part) because that implies there isn’t a single thing that you could’ve done better or changed, creatively speaking etc . Saying that, if there is such a thing as a perfect film it’s Darling. So tell me what it was like to write a film like that and then what was the shoot like?

Mickey:

Wow, thank you that’s very nice of you to say. I just knew I wanted to really experiment. I didn’t want to feel constrained by any expectations or trends that were going on in horror at that time. We shot it very quickly and then just sculpted for quite some time, until the film itself told us it was done. It was a truly artistic process.

Adam:

Forget the story for a minute because while there’s obviously some inspiration taken from films like “Repulsion”, “Rosemary’s Baby” and “The Shining”, your stylistic choices and the film’s overall aesthetics are simply flawless and in my humble opinion better than those films of Polanski’s and Kubrick’s. How did you go about making sure you kept your original vision, all the while paying particular homage to great filmmakers of that era?

Mickey:

Nobody’s films are better than Kubrick’s or Polanski’s – certainly not mine! We really shot for specificity. There was little to no coverage. I wanted every shot to be a painting that would move the story along just a bit. I got really lucky with that house though. They let us take control of that place for weeks and make it our own. It was quite a blessing.

Adam:

What about Lauren Ashley Carter, isn’t she just superb in this? I said in my review that she delivered the best performance that I’ve ever seen in any independent film in the genre (I really mean that). Where did you find her and how did you know she was the right actress for Darling?

Mickey:

We worked together on Pod and thought it would be really fun to see her play the villain. She took it and ran with it!

Adam:

Okay… so enough about Darling (haha), although I could talk all day about that film. “Carnage Park” is your latest film and it’s a superbly film in my humble opinion. The film sees you tackle a plot that’s driven by Action and Crime, with just a touch of Horror about it I’d say. The cast includes some great character actors like Pat Healy (Cheap Thrills and Compliance, two personal favorites) and Alan Ruck (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Twister), as well as up and coming actress, Ashley Bell and “Westworld” Actor, James Landry Hebert. You can tell yet again just by the trailer, aesthetically you’ve got a fantastic film on your hands. The details in your 70’s setting look very authentic, even down to the way you’ve color graded the film and that sort of washed out and gritty look, What can you tell readers about it and what they might be in for?

Mickey:

It’s a totally different movie from Darling. I wanted to make something that was a love letter to American cinema in the 70’s. It’s quite violent and very energetic.

Adam:

I’ve done some digging on your next film “Psychopaths”, which sees you reuniting with Ashley and James but the details about it are scarce. What can you tell us about this one and how’s the shoot going?

Mickey:

We’re in post now. This one’s a total psychedelic trip. We’ve got a big ensemble of crazy characters. It’s again a very different film from the other films I’ve made. 

Adam:

Before we let you get back to it, I just wanted to ask what else you have in the pipeline for the remainder of 2016 and beyond? I heard whispers about something called “Fallout Shelter” but I know IMDb isn’t always the most reliable when it comes to future projects! I really think as people see your work and you growing and maturing as an artist, they’re really going to get behind you (if they haven’t already).

Mickey:

Right now, we’re just working on finishing Psychopaths, but I should have another project rolling soon, but probably not Fallout Shelter. That’s another one I can’t get off my IMDb!

Adam:

Well it’s been fantastic talking with you Mickey. Keep an eye out for my reviews for your other films. Feel free to send any other screeners of new projects my way for review and I’ll continue to do my bit in supporting independent films and incredibly talented artists such as yourself. Thanks again my friend and remember everyone, “Carnage Park” is available on DVD and Blu Ray, November 1st. There will be a link below where I suggest you purchase it from, trust me you won’t regret it.

Mickey:

Thank you!!

cp

https://www.amazon.com/Carnage-Park-Blu-ray-Ashley-Bell/dp/B01JPN6N6M

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4335650/?ref_=nm_flmg_dr_2

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