The man responsible for submitting not one, but two Slumber Party Massacre 4 scripts to New Concorde. He's also accomplished many other things, working on such films as Julia Wept, 5 Dark Souls, 5 Dark Souls, Part 2, and Mark of the Devil 666. Not only that, but Jason is an experienced writer and has done many scripts, along with writing articles for such magazines as Femme Fatales and Fangoria. Interviewing Jason was lots of fun, and I got to learn more about him, along with some interesting SPM-related trivia. Thanks a lot to Jason for being so cool to do the interview!
Q: Tell me a little bit about yourself.
A: I'm a 27 year old native of Racine, WI. When I was 19 I wrote an extremely violent sequel to THE LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT. I submitted it to Kushner-Locke, who released the original Wes Craven classic, and they loved it. They debated over it for 6 months, and even submitted it to Craven's company and his son Jonathan to consider as a producer. Ultimately, they turned the project down because they feared it would recieve an NC-17, which was too much of a financial risk.
I was still determined to get it made, so I submitted it to MDM Productions in Richmond, VA. The company's president, Michael D. Moore, loved it, but couldn't afford the sequel rights.He wanted to film it anyway and call it THE FIRST HOUSE ON THE RIGHT. I thought it was too cheesy and declined. Instead, he hired me to write and direct MARK OF THE DEVIL 666 for his video label MOORE VIDEO.
MARK OF THE DEVIL 666, which introduced gorgeous femme fatale Karen Dilloo as the heroine, was about a killer who slaughters people he believes are responsible for society's ills. He also models their deaths after famous horror film murders. The movie was released in July 1995 (a year and a half before SCREAM)and was a big success for the label. Moore immediately asked me to helm THREE ON A MEATHOOK - PART 2. I tried to write the script, but couldn't take it seriously. One night I came up with a new title: 5 DARK SOULS.
Released in 1996, 5 DARK SOULS was about a group of popular teens who trick three "nerds" into the woods to make a snuff movie and kill them just to see what it's like to kill some. The movie was another success for MOORE. So I followed it up in 1998 with 5 DARK SOULS - PART 2.
11 days after completing Part 2, I moved to West Hollywood, CA... Go to the next question to find out what happended next.
Q: I understand you've worked on such films as "The Brotherhood" (1 & 2), "Final Stab," "Ancient Evil: Scream of the Mummy," and the short film, "Julia Wept," starring Brinke Stevens. How did you come about to working in the film business?
A: I new a move to LA was necessary to get into bigger budgeted features. The ones I'd shot for Moore served their purpose, but I knew wouldn't get me enough recognition to make horror movies with budgets.
Upon arriving in LA, I started hanging out with Brinke Stevens, whom I'd met at a Fangoria Convention in Chicago when I was a teen. At that point (around 1994), I asked Brinke if she'd be in another SPM movie. After convincing her I could bring her character back to life, she happily agreed and gave me her agents contact number. I wrote the script, titled SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE IV: TWO FACES OF EVIL. Brinke loved it, but as you already know, Concorde wouldn't even look at it, believing the slasher series was dead. I was bummed, but Brinke and I continued to be pen pals.
Upon arriving in LA in 1998, Brinke took me under her angelic wings and began introducing me to people. Among the most beneficial was JR Bookwalter (WITCHOUSE 2, THE DEAD NEXT DOOR). I explained to him (at Brinke's b-day party) that I was a fan of his work, and was also a fan of David DeCoteau. By chance, JR worked at Full Moon along side DeCoteau and the next day told DeCoteau all about "this kid from Brinke's party who knew everything about every movie 'Dave' had made." Two days later, DeCoteau called me in for a meeting. The rest is history...
Q: How many articles have you written for "Femme Fatales" magazine? I'd like to know about the "Slumber Party Massacre" coverage, which I currently ordered a back-issue of...
A: I've written over 10 articles for FEMME FATALES. Two of them have already been published: the SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE Retrospective in issue 9:3 and the David DeCoteau Retrospective in 9:7. Two articles, retros on Pamela Susan Shoop (HALLOWEEN II) and the cult film THERE'S NOTHING OUT THERE will be in the issue available the first week of July 2001. The other articles will appear in every issue throughout the remainder of 2001 and early 2002. I was also just assigned two monthly columns by co-editor Lisa Coduto. Coulmn #1 is "B-MOVIE GRAVEYARD," and extension of my website in which I review forgotten b flicks of years past. Column #2 will focus on reviewing newer features. Both should start appearing by the end of the summer.
As for my SPM coverage, I've always been a fan of the series and knew it would be perfect for the magazine. For almost a year, beginning in late 1998, I began researching the whereabouts of the actresses. Those I found I interviewed (nervously I might add) and found them all to be beyond delightful and proud of the films. Aside from Brinke, I think my favorite was Brandi Burkett - pure southern charm and SO beautiful. I located Crystal Bernard, Amy Jones and Rita Mae Brown, but none of them responded to my requests. The only actress to actually refused to participate was Maria Ford, who I should add, was very sweet and appologetic, but was attemping to recreate her career at the time and, I later found out, does not do interviews... ever. She has never, as far as I've researched, done a single interview for any publication.
Once I'd completed the interviews, I tried to arrange a photo shoot, which was way more complicated than I'd originally expected. The only actresses who would agree to do it were Brinke and Heidi Kozak (still stunning and perky 15 years later! She IS "Sally Burns"!) The others were not "allowed" to participate by their agents/managers, fearing a backlash of their clients, who are know receiving much "respected" work, appearing in lingerie on the mags cover. Amusingly, Juliette Cummins, who's a HUGE commerical actress now, wound up on the cover anyway because the artwork from SPM II was used. ;)
The photo shoot itself also turned out to be a nightmare, because the photographer was less than couth with the ladies. Still, they remained professional throughout and kept smiling.
The rest of the article was basically a compling of research from magazines, books and the internet, plus an extention of my college senior thesis arguing why the original film should be considered a classic within its own genre. (I got an A+) Also, New Concorde, owner of the series, was so wonderful in allowing me to dig through their file cabinets and drag out literally hundreds of still from the three films (and unfortunately one from SOROITY HOUSE MASSACRE II which was mislabeled and printed in the mag as being from SPM 2). I really must thank Tony Pines at New Concorde for his help and getting the pictures.
I was later told by then editor Bill George, who really got behind the retrospective, that they received more fan mail for that one issue than any other issue in the mags 8 year history!
Q: What prompted you to write a script for SPM 4; was it fan-based or were you asked to do it?
A: Both of my scripts were fan-based. The original 1994 script was very much along the lines of the other films in terms of "kids go to party and die." Brinke's character "Linda" and Robin Rochelle Stille's "Valerie" were both brought back as the leads. Crystal Bernard's "Courtney" had an early cameo, while Maria Claire's "Susie" had much more involvement, but dies from suicide/depression a quarter of the way through. The story a little more complex than the other films, concentrating on two girls with an obsession over one guy who had personal issues of his own. It all culmnates on one evening at an isolated slumber party and was about as violent as the original TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE. (Read question #6 for the new scripts plot)
I wrote the script merely on the basis of LOVING the trilogy and, since I assumed no one else was writing one, decided it had already been too long waiting for Part 4. I did try to resubmit the same script in 1998, but was again turned down, the company still proclaiming they didn't want to do Part 4, no matter what script came their way.
Q: Do you have any news on the recent state of SPM 4's production?
A: In additon to what I said at the beginning of this letter, Concorde took a serious interest in my 2000 SPM 4 script due to the success of the magazine article, which led to the extremely successful reissue of the series on VHS and DVD, and a successful theatrical release of the original film in France on brand new 35mm prints.
Q: Could you give me any more information concerning your script's plot, other than the synopsis you provided (esp. the SPM 3 tie-in)?
A: I'm fearful of giving away who the killer is, but the person has direct ties to Russ Thorn. Could be an adult, could be one of the teenagers. "Ken," the killer from Part 3, we also learn has a direct bloodline to Russ Thorn.
The basic plot finds Linda (Brinke Stevens) still scarred emmotionally and physically from the original film. She was left for dead, but when she didn't return home from school, her parents and the police went looking for her. She has unfortunately projected her fears and insecurities onto her now teenaged daughter "Amy." Between them, Linda is mousy, Amy is strong and essentially the parent. They have a next door neighbor named "Rita," (Julie Strain) who's outgoing and flambouyant who makes it her own personal duty to bring Linda out of her shell. Rita's daughter, "Mae," is the exact opposite. Quiet and reserved. She's a "Goth girl" whom the other teens don't understand and actually fear, because she practices Wicca.
Rita convinces Linda to leave town for a "girls night out," the same night Amy is celebrating her birthday with her friends by means of, you guessed it, a slumber party. While away, Linda and Rita unearth blood ties to Russ Thorn. Linda knows carnage is undoubtedly ensuing at the party.
Meanwhile, each of Amy's friends have arrived, and each has a specific issue true to teen life. Jennifer is pyschically abused by her boyfriend. Gina is anorexic and emmotionally abused by her boyfriend. Michelle is a teen mother dealing with being an adult she's not ready to be. The only "nice" guy at the party is Ricky, whom Amy quickly becomes smitten with. Mae reluctantly joins the party, but soon finds bonds between "a few" of her peers.
As the night goes on, carnage does indeed begin, the mystery killer essentially offing those who do not face and own up to their personal problems and responsibilities. By the time Linda makes it into the house, most are dead, but the killer is not, and Linda must face her own fears, along with the other survivors, to battle a killer so violent and nasty he/she/it gives Leatherface a run for his money.
Enticing? I hope so...
Q: Which SPM movie is your favorite?
A: Easily the original film. It's both intentionally funny AND scary. The undoubted precurser to SCREAM. It has a great, eerie mood and the actresses are all so enjoyable. Besides, it introduced Brinke Stevens into the world of horror... so many thanks!
Q: Have you watched any of the SHM movies?
A: Yes, and I love them. I enjoy each for different reasons. SORORITY HOUSE MASSACRE truly scarred me, and also helped develope my creative eye with its stunning visuals and angles. The story was a bit transparent, but never bored and had some cool themes.
SORORITY HOUSE MASSACRE II I love now, but hated when I first saw it, because I'm a huge protestor of sequels which have nothing to do with their predacessors (also an issue on SPM 3 when I first watched it, but grew to love). Now, I enjoy SHM 2 for it's dark humor and sense of fun.
Q: Do you enjoy the horror genre overall; what types of movies do you watch?
A: I'm a HUGE horror fan. I even taught a class at the University of Wisonsin - Parkside in Spring 2000 called "The Modern Era of American Horror: 1968 to 1994." I have an uncanny talent to offering facts about most every horror movie made over the last 3 decades, even those I've never seen. There's nothing better than some blood shed and blood curdling screams on a Friday night... CARRIE is my all time favorite.
Q: Who's your favorite Scream Queen?
A: Brinke, obviously, though I'm also partial to Jamie Lee Curtis, Linnea Quigley and Michelle Bauer.
Q: What type of work have you enjoyed doing the most so far?
A: Writing and directing are my favorite positions. I need hands on experience. I've mostly done work as a Produciton Coordinator and Assistant Director in the past few years, which has taught me a lot about the business, but I'd much rather be the one calling the shots. It gets my creative energies flowing and bursting out.
Q: What was it like working with masters David DeCoteau and Brinke Stevens?
A: David is so great and wonderful to work for. He's been an idol of mine since I was 15. He's taughtme so much about the industry and I can't thank him enough.
Brinke is also fantastic. She was so great to work with me on JULIA WEPT. She's a complete professional and has also given me tons of knowledge about working in the B film industry. I absolutely love her! She's one of the nicest, sweetest and most sincere human beings I've ever met!
Q: Who are some interesting people you've collaborated with?
A: Julie King, who starred in my films JULIA WEPT and 5 DARK SOULS - PART 2. She raised the money for and shot her own 16mm movie WORLDS, without any training or experience! Karen Dilloo and William Krekling, who were in both 5 DARK SOULS movies and JULIA WEPT have been my best friends and inspirations since as far back as I can remember. David A. Szulkin, who wrote the definitive LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT book has eaten many lunches with me and given great ideas for both movies and upcoming books. Plus, I also just got to work with a bevy of starlets:
Cassandra Peterson (Elvira, herself), Musetta Vander (OBLIVION, THE CELL), Stella Stevens (THE POSIEDON ADVENTURE), Mary Wornov (WARLOCK), Sam Irvin (director - ELVIRA'S HAUNTED HILLS) and, my all time favorite comedian, Julie Brown (CLUELESS).
Q: What are some of the goals you think you've accomplished in your life or want to pursue?
A: I've gotten a lot further in the industry than most people in LA do in their entire lifetimes. I've been afforded so many opportunities by people just willing to take a chance on my abilities.
Next, it's time to shoot a movie on 16mm or 35mm my way! Plus, I'm going to continue writing for Femme Fatales and Fangoria. It's a dream come true.
Check out my website at www.jasonpaulcollum.com
Also, I'd like to thank Nigel and marsh00mallow who generally helped pass the info along to Jason about the site.
[Home][The Slumber Party Massacre][Slumber Party Massacre 2][Slumber Party Massacre 3][Sorority House Massacre][Sorority House Massacre 2][Hard to Die][E-mail]
© 2001 to present, The Old Hockstatter Place
This site is completely unofficial, and is not endorsed by anyone affiliated with the Slumber Party Massacre
or Sorority House Massacre
series - both © New Concorde/Horizons. All site material was produced by the webmaster
, unless otherwise noted. Images, sounds, etc. are to be uploaded to your own server if used on other sites, along with credit to their rightful owners. Site best experienced using 800x600 or 1280x1024 resolutions with Internet Explorer