Armont Casale : Honestly I had been working in production for several years, specifically television production. And I just got tired of waiting for someone else to give me my opportunity. So I decided to make own opportunity. I am an avid horror aficionado. I grew up with Jason, Freedy, Michael Myers. icons to most horror fans. I guess my thinking was, where are the new iconic villains? So with Purge, I took what I liked about my childhood icons and added my own personal touch. There is still a lot to learn about Purge and room for lots of growth. Hopefully, fans will take to him and want to know more about him.
Mike Joy : What was the filming locations?
Armont Casale : We shot 97% of the film in Santa Clarita CA. about half an hour to forty five minutes outside of Los Angeles. Why didn’t we shoot in LA? hell man, those film permits are expensive! lol. Santa Clarita fit our budget, plus there’s more rural, mountain land out there, it fit the script perfectly. It wasn’t so nice on my gas tank though. I drive a Z28 Camaro, V8 engine. you get the picture.
Mike Joy : How long did it take to shoot?
Armont Casale : We shot the film over the course of two weeks. most days were twelve hours, sometimes more. it was grueling. 8 am to 8pm, sleep a few hours, come back and do it again.
Mike Joy : What was the most difficult part of filming Filth to Ashes?
Armont Casale : The climax of the film was really difficult. We went till 6am! there were so much stunts and action to keep taking from different angles, it was cold and the actress that plays Shelly( Diana Quezada) was ill. She didn’t know it at the time but she had some kind of lump growing on her lungs..or was it her kidney? anyway, she was in pain. and can you believe she still managed to smile at the end? LOL
Mike Joy : What separates Filth to Ashes from the other low budget horror movies out there?
Armont Casale : How hard is it to find my nitch? I don’t approach things from the mindset of the market is over-saturated, I don’t stand a chance. I think the thing that separates Filth To Ashes from 99% of the lower budget horror films, is quality. I know we didn’t make The Godfather, and we won’t win any Oscars, but we made a damn good movie. We cast good actors, the Director was great, the crew was always in good spirits. And hey, the script was good. lol I think the story is what separates Filth from most low budgets. yes, It’s a slasher film, but Purge’s motivation is real world. A lot of people think the way he does. We have this tea party thing going on in America, and other elitist sh*t. The chances of a Purge being out there is real. Remember that guy, what was his name, oh yeah, Hitler.
Mike Joy : What was the most memorable part of making Filth to Ashes?
Armont Casale : most memorable parts of the film.. the gore scenes of course! seeing an actress you were just talking to getting her brains bashed out or her face pummelled and then sitting with her laughing at lunch, classic.
Mike Joy : Who are your horror influences?
Armont Casale : Wes Craven definitely. john Carpenter. on the other end, Cronenberg. I like the far out there stuff. Ever see Naked Lunch? awesome stuff.
Mike Joy : What are your favorite horror movies?
Armont Casale : Man if there was ever a game show built around horror, having me on your team gaurentees a win! lol. i’ve seen em all. Except for Sewage baby. Just found that on youtube. the trailer alone is classic. My favorite movie of all time is THE CROW. not a horror, but has some gothic-ness to it.
Mike Joy : Why does Diana smile so much at the end?
Armont Casale : the high brow explanation: She loves Eric, but supports the decision he makes(I dont want to give away the ending) The low brow explanation: the Director told her to.
Mike Joy : What’s next for Armont Casale?
Armont Casale : For me, The script for the next Filth To Ashes chapeter is complete and I hope to shoot by spring of 2011. you know the ending but believe me, there is more to learn and quite a few surprises. non horror related, i don’t want to say to much, but I have s spec script for a video game, won’t say which one, but it’s one of the biggest, of all time. When i get the okay, I’ll make sure to give you the scoop. A have a thriller titled Mad Mad Maryjane and a teen slasher, PSYCHOTIK (psychotic) it’s Scream set in the hood. It’s a blast. And we should be at Screamfest and Shreikfest in October with Filth To Ashes, Flesh to Dust.
Interview: Armont Casale (Film to Ashes, Flesh to Dust)