Beyond Fest Interviews: Cast and Crew of MAYHEM

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Beyond Fest hosted the West Coast Premiere of Joe Lynch's film MAYHEM at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood on Saturday, October 7, 2017, and Michael Coulombe was there at the red carpet to say hi to the actors, director, and some other invited guests. It was a warm Saturday evening in Hollywood as the guests began to arrive... 

First up, musical supervisor James Jacoby in a black shirt and blue blazer who arrived with his girlfriend Melissa Axel. She had an awesome blue tine in her hair and dressed her outfit accordingly. 

(L-R) Melissa Axel and James Jacoby

(L-R) Melissa Axel and James Jacoby

Nightmarish Conjurings: So, James, where did you get your inspiration for the music of this film come from and what was your process for the music throughout the film? 

James Jacoby; Well I came in later into the process. By the time I got on principal photography had been done and I think Joe had some specific ideas in mind in where he wanted to go musically with the film and then I think working together we found the approach that was the most creative and unusual and unexpected for people. And as you see from the opening scene it immediately sets the tone and music is such a big part of that and the audience is suddenly going to realize what they are in for. 

NC: What's next for you after MAYHEM? 

JJ: Well actually I am doing another Joe Lynch film. His next film is starting soon and is called TASTE and I am excited, there is some amazing music opportunities with this project and I can't wait to dive in!

Next, Zack Andrews, producer of THE HOUSES OCTOBER BUILT 1 and 2 took a moment to stop by and say hello. 

Zack Andrews producer of THE HOUSES OCTOBER BUILT 1 & 2

Zack Andrews producer of THE HOUSES OCTOBER BUILT 1 & 2

NC: Hi Zack, thanks for stopping by! With THE HOUSES OCTOBER BUILT 2 now out, what can fans expect from this second film? 

Zack Andrews: It’s a Halloween adventure. I wouldn’t think of it as a horror film – it’s more about do you like Halloween Haunted Houses, do you like Halloween experiences and if you want to go on this journey with us then it’s a fun ride. Come have a beer and check out all these places across the country. 

NC: The first was a documentary, is the second film similar in style?

ZA: It’s similar in style yes but this time we are going to bigger and better places. I want an audience member to say I want to go see a horror movie and then go to a haunted house. So, I want you to do the same thing with this movie…and have a Halloween experience; go to Minnesota and do this 30,000 Zombie Pub crawl. You will have an amazing time.

NC: Well we wish you all the best success with the film, enjoy MAYHEM this evening!

Claire Dellamare, who plays Meg, was sweet and joyous as she walked down the red carpet and with all smiles, she took a moment to answer some questions for us. 

NC: Tell us about your experience being on this movie, what drew you to the project, and what it was like working with the director Joe Lynch.

Claire Dellamare: Joe is amazing, I love him. He’s such a wild, inventive, creative person, especially for a film like this because we were being such complete psychos. And even before we get the virus in the movie I feel the characters are so deplorable and so I think Joe had this like wackiness – he was like a kid in a candy store, and that energy was infectious for the rest of the cast. It felt like playing. We were in this really weird office building in Serbia, which was so random and it was also random IN Serbia; it felt like we were in Serbia and then it also felt like we were in this office building that felt like weird America. And Joe was such a great leader.

Next, we got a quick moment to speak to the man himself, Joe Lynch, who does indeed have a great and infectious energy. It's easy to see why so many people enjoy working with him. 

MAYHEM director Joe Lynch

MAYHEM director Joe Lynch

NC: What was your inspiration for this movie? When it comes to the office environment I feel that most people can relate to that.

Joe Lynch: Funny enough I was working a corporate job when I got the script. Let’s be honest, move deals, and bungalows, and three picture development deals, they don’t come anymore. So, I am a working filmmaker at this point, working corporate gigs to make ends meet. And then I got this script sent to me and it blew me away but I also went ‘I know this guy, I know this situation.’ Immediately it’s how can I infuse the term ‘Let’s Discuss’ everywhere because the movie to me is a comment on passive-aggression in a way. Where no one wants to be honest, especially in a corporate world where everybody can get sued, and everyone walks on egg shells as much as possible. So, this film felt so personal to me. It didn’t matter what the budget was, it didn’t matter what constraints there were – I needed to tell this story.

NC: Well again it really seems most people can relate to this movie. You know, I mean who hasn’t wanted to kill their coworker – 

JL: Or their boss, or the guy who brings the bagel on bagel Thursday who is always a douche – 

NC: Or the guy who can’t deliver the mail on time

JL: There is always – in a sort of petri dish of passive aggression – there is a lot of people who are frustrated, and these corporations they try so hard – and not to fault them – but they try so hard to keep everything on an even keel – totally PC – and it somehow ruins the humanity of the moment, and in a lot of ways it takes the passion out of work. So, this film was my comment on that and I do hope that the audience is able to release any cathartic demons they need to get out.

NC: So, I worked in an office and I had a woman like ‘The Siren’ who made my office experience so frustrating so this was cathartic for me.

JL: Well what’s interesting is that we have these archetypes for these higher-ups, these supervisors, and everyone we show this movie to, they are all like ‘Oh I had a Siren, I had a Reaper, I had Bull’ and if you generalize it, then it makes easier for people to be like ‘I know who that is.’ Turning it into caricatures in a way makes it easier for people to digest – it’s the sugar to make the medicine go down. I didn’t want to make something too mean-spirited where people wouldn’t see the heart behind it because in the end I wanted there to be a message of hope.

NC: Well thank you for that and we wish you all the best of luck with the screening and with the film.

As it neared closer to picture time, we took a quick moment to speak to lead actress Samara Weaving. She was elegant and stunning on the red carpet, and were happy she could stop and say hi.

MAYHEM actress Samara Weaving

MAYHEM actress Samara Weaving

NC: So, I appreciate that there are strong women in horror, especially now more than ever. We need to see more stronger women in this genre – well all genres really, and it’s great, because in this film you are an equal to Steven Yuen’s character. Okay, so you look great in the movie, you get to carry a nail gun and you kick ass, all while in a micro mini – so tell me about this character and how great it was to play her?

Samara Weaving: Well it was partly wrong place at the wrong time, she wants to help her family from being evicted from their home, and I think she was willing to do anything for that – and she ends up doing absolutely everything for them. 

NC: Yes, exactly. That’s what I love about the film! What’s next up for you?

SW: Well, we have THE BABYSITTER coming out next week and then the Showtime comedy SMILF which comes out in November and I just wrapped an Australian TV show that got picked up by Amazon called PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK

NC: Great. And one more quick question since I know the screening is about to start. What was it like working with the director Joey Lynch?

SW: Joe is wonderful, one of the best director I’ve worked with just because of his real trust in the actors and he lets you really go there, you know, and this script really allowed for anything to happen and we could really let loose and have fun.

NC: Well thank you so much. You are very charming and we appreciate you taking the time to say hi. Good luck with the film and all your future projects.

SW: Awe, thank you so much.

With that, the audience moved inside to enjoy the west coast premiere of Joe Lynch’s new film MAYHEM.

MAYHEM arrives in theaters, VOD and Digital HD on November 10th from RLJE Films. 

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