Saturday, September 19, 2015

SURVIVING BY NOT DROWNING IN BLOOD



Everyone has dreams. 
My dream was to write screenplays.  
As you grow older, you either get closer to that dream or it seems to drift further away. 

Back in 1988, my dream of breaking into the film industry seemed like a distant ship on the horizon
Desperate to change things up, I thought up a plan that might allow me entry into the Entertainment industry -- writing for a magazine that was covering a film genre that I loved. 

Fangoria had already established itself by the late eighties as the bible for fans of horror — not only those who loved watching the gore up on the screen, but also those who wanted to work in an industry that made genre movies. 



There came an opportunity when I struck up a friendship with Darin Scott. He was a film producer who would allow me access to the production set of a movie he was producing – Stepfather II.  

I wrote to Tony Timpone, the editor of Fangoria, about my ideas for covering the production of Stepfather II for his magazine. Tony wrote back and after an exchange of messages, I ended up with the writing assignment for the magazine.  
The first story I wrote (with James Bonny) led to three more stories for Fangoria
Each experience with the magazine was amazing. And as a screenwriter wannabe, every time I was on set for the magazine, it allowed me to meet the people who were working in front of and behind the camera in the entertainment industry. More importantly, it's not who I met, but what I learned and how all of it affected my level of confidence. The more time you spend on a film set, the more comfortable you feel with the notion that some day you will eventually... belong.  

But that was then.  
This is now.  
Everything is different.  

So, I thought it would be interesting, and hopefully informative, to check in with someone working for Fangoria magazine today.  
  
Adam Lee Price is an Editorial Assistant at FANGORIA magazine. He’s working as an intern for the publication while he attends school and pursues a career as a Professional Screenwriter. 
On his Linkedin Bio he calls himself a “Horror Aficionado,” which is a good sign that the next generation of people working for Fangoria have a love for horror. 
Since we share this background, I decided Adam would be the perfect person to interview about breaking into the industry via an iconic magazine. 

Q: You’re working for the magazine as an editorial assistant intern. I could insert here some joke about what an editorial intern must put up while working at Fangoria magazines, but I won’t because I want this interview to be serious, not camp, like what happens with so many bad horror sequels. So here’s my question - what does a Fangoria editorial assistant intern do in his job?

ADAM: I DON’T GET COFFEE! The best thing about being an intern with FANGORIA is that I actually get to write! I’ve already been published four times! 
Of course, there is analytical work and emailing but that’s just par for the course. Probably one of the best perks is attending events such as screenings and premieres of some great horror flicks…a horror fanatics dream, or nightmare, one in the same for me.


Q: I used my freelance writing work for Fangoria as a stepping stone to get into the film industry. Was this one of your goals as well when you applied to become an intern at the magazine?


ADAM: I’ve been reading FANGORIA since I was in my  teens. I would look through the pages and imagine my future movies being reviewed. Back then I wanted to just act, but now I want to create horror icons like the ones originated by John Carpenter, Clive Barker, and the man who inspired me the most, the late Wes Craven. So, yes, working at this particular magazine is more than a stepping stone, it’s a doorway that has finally been opened!

Q: Fangoria has been around for a while. Do you feel the sense of “tradition” working for the magazine?


ADAM: There is a tremendous sense of tradition! I own many early editions of the magazine as well as most of the newer ones, and to see those who have come before me is thrilling. Knowing that one day there is going to be a kid like I was, reading those hallowed pages I’m now writing for exemplifies that!

Q: So what’s your theory about why people love a good horror movie?

ADAM: We are all insane! Honestly, there is absolutely something wrong with us! Funny thing is, if I see a needle or real blood, especially mine, I literally want to pass out. However, I love all the gore and blood and mayhem that the wonderful world of horror brings to the screen. Though I still won’t watch Cannibal Holocaust. My partner keeps trying to make me watch it…says he’ll even pay me, but I just can’t to it.  




Q: I hear you on Cannibal Holocaust. It’s one of the films that goes way beyond the normal slasher violence for a date night horror movie. During the production of Carver, the director, Franklin Guerrero, actually made it a point of showing the film to the cast and crew as a way of getting them motivated for what we would be shooting. What is it about CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST that prevents you from watching it?

ADAM: I could tell you I’m just not big into cannibal films, but the truth is I am a big animal lover. Hell, I even feel bad for (the shark in) Jaws and (the dog in) Cujo. Of course, I know that the killing in those films is not real, but still animal cruelty on the screen just bothers me. It is widely known that while filming Cannibal Holocaust, animals were not only harmed but killed to make the film more realistic. As silly as that may sound, it is the only reason why I won't watch it....though I cannot wait to see Eli Roth's Green Inferno!

Q: Everybody has a story to tell about why they want to be a Professional Screenwriter, but your background is interesting because of what you describe as -- a ten year hiatus so "that I may finally make my dream of writing for film and television a reality." So why after ten years was it important for you to make professional Film/TV screenwriting a career?

ADAM: Since I can remember, I wanted to be in this industry, in some way shape or form thanks to the movies A Nightmare on Elm St., Halloween, and Clue, yes Clue. However, about 10 years ago I lost my way. I forgot who I was. I guess that happens to a lot of people, and it had nothing to do with bad decisions, or drugs or alcohol. It was pure fear. I just wasn’t focused, my work schedule was getting to me, everything I wrote was crap, until I picked up a script I was working on and I realized I had to finish it. So I did! I went back to school so that I could get into the industry through the back door, hence the internship. I was so focused, and my writing was back on track! I started blogging and gaining readers, and before I knew it, I was pulling a 4.0. I finished the script and I got the internship at FANGORIA.

Q: Growing up you were a Boy Scout. I’m assuming you earned a merit badge that pretty much makes you an expert if suddenly confronted by a stab wound victim with blood flowing like a geyser?

ADAM: Well if there was that much blood, I’d probably pass out. Luckily, my father was my Scout Master, and I looked up to him so much, and not because he is 6’4, but because he believed in me. First, I'd probably have to overcome my fear of blood. I’d next proceed to tie a tourniquet above the wound, nice and tight to cut off circulation and stop the bleeding. If it was really bad, I’d light a thick branch from a tree on fire, blow out the flame, and burn that baby shut! And then I would pass out!

Q: I’ve often advertised myself as the “Last Boy Scout” working in the Entertainment Industry, but it’s always been a bit of hype on my part because I never got further than being a cub scout. Do you think having the Boy Scout background helps you in your filmmaking career?


ADAM: I’m an Eagle Scout…that helps everything I do! From confidence to getting out of sticky situations, being a scout is a huge part of my life. I’ve always wanted to write a really great horror movie about the scouts, so last year I wrote a short story called T356 for my blog that I may turn into a screenplay eventually. Check it out -- I Want To Suck Your Blog


Q: Let’s say the management at Fangoria magazine offers a perk to all the interns – the chance to assume the role of any horror killer/villain/antagonist. Who do you choose and why?


ADAM: Oh Michael Myers hands down. He’s the ultimate. He’s emotionless, faceless, and always one step ahead of everyone! He’s the first villain to just snap, for no reason other than he is pure evil. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love Freddy. I even own Wes Craven's personal copy of the original Nightmare On Elm St. But Mike is the man!   



The Production team behind this Interview would like readers to know that --
No Interns were maimed, injured or killed during this Interview