Skip to main content

Q&A with director Taylor Ri'chard about his film THE FINAL PROJECT



Six college students have organized the ultimate graduation project… a documentary film about one of the most notorious haunted houses in America, the Lafitte Plantation in Vacherie, Louisiana. A Civil War landmark with a dark past, complete with stories of mutilated soldiers, murdered families and restless shadows roaming its abandoned corridors… no one has entered Lafitte in years- until now. Outfitted with high-tech recording equipment in order to capture every moment of their great adventure, these intrepid young filmmakers bravely venture deep into the misty backwoods of Louisiana. But on this plantation that time has forgotten, something evil still waits and watches. When darkness falls, their deepest fears come to life, as one by one they’ll learn the horrifying truth that awaits all who dare seek the secrets of the Lafitte Plantation. The dead are awake, and there are some places the living should never go.

Utilizing real locations in and around Georgia, THE FINAL PROJECT features a crew and ensemble of dedicated locals well acquainted with the haunted history of the South. Combining the “found footage” genre with authentic local folklore, it updates the classic American ghost story by tapping into a history too chillingly real to deny. The backstory of THE FINAL PROJECT combines an Old Hollywood touch with a real-life twist. Chretien Point Plantation in Sunset, Louisiana, the real-life model for the film’s Lafitte Plantation, was also the inspiration for the interior of the legendary “Tara” from Gone with the Wind. Its true claim to fame, however, lies closer to home. The site of a pitched and bloody battle between Union and Confederate soldiers at the height of the Civil War, with a bullet hole still embedded in one of its front doors, Chretien Point has long been rumored to be one of the biggest supernatural “hotspots” in North America. Ghostly sightings have been reported for decades, with stories of buried treasure, a vengeful “house mistress”, and even a nearby haunted bridge. THE FINAL PROJECT is the debut film from indie filmmaker Taylor Ri’chard and hits theaters beginning Feb 12th in Atlanta and Houston, March 4th in New York and Los Angeles, and then expands nationwide.



What drew you to the horror genre? 

I have always loved horror. I’m a huge Wes Craven fan. But when I saw The Blair Witch Project I wanted to make a movie like that. I consider The Final Project me paying homage to a legendary film.

Did you have the found footage conceit in mind going in or was this conceived as a traditional narrative?

No I wrote this movie as a found footage from the beginning. I actually love the genre and wanted to make my contribution to it.

The casting in your film is really strong, how involved are you in the casting process?

I was involved with the casting from the beginning. I had a certain idea in mind of what I was looking for, so every actor was able to meet me and work with me throughout the casting process.

Leonardo Santaiti, Arin Jones and Amber Erwin all brought a depth to their characters that you normally don't see in genre work. Was that something you were attempting in the writing process or something the actors brought to their respective roles?


Well what you see from these actors is them being their selves. I wanted actors who walked into the audition with natural personality traits of the characters I wrote. The most important thing in my opinion when casting for a found footage film is that the characters already posses the traits you are casting for. It provides a natural feeling when directing them on script.

Your film is something of a slow burn. Thank you for having faith in the audience, we don't need a scare every 30 seconds to keep us engaged. That being said, how conscious of pacing are you in the writing, shooting and editing stages of the film? Do you worry about loosing the audience?

Well I find that in most found footage movies the narrative gets lost in the need to be edgy. I wanted to take my time and try to actually develop a narrative that would possibly allow the audience to connect and develop some type of connection with the characters. I think that if the audience allow themselves to connect with the characters and receive what they are saying during the slower times in the movie they will have a great time when the movie picks up the pace later.

Do you plan on sticking with genre films?

Honestly I plan to create as it comes to me. I consider myself a versatile writer and plan to make movies that reflect the stories that I need to tell.

It seems like there are ton of talented filmmakers and actors in Atlanta right now. What the hell is going on down there? 

Well Georgia has some great incentives for the movie making business and that is also providing platforms for filmmakers and actors to make a living here.

Carolina or Denver?
Carolina of course!



Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Richard Armitage interview on SLEEPWALKER

SLEEPWALKER is the latest film from director Elliott Lester. Troubled by bouts of sleepwalking and disturbing nightmares, graduate student Sarah Foster goes to her university's sleep research center for help. When she wakes up after her first night of being monitored, the world she lives in seems to have changed in subtle, Twilight-Zone-esque ways. In fact, every time she goes to sleep now, she wakes up in a slightly different version of her world. With the help of sleep researcher Dr. Scott White, she tries to work her way back to the reality she started in. But when they finally succeed, it’s revealed that Sarah’s world is not what she thought at all.

Today my guest is one of the stars SLEEPWALKER, Richard Armitage. Tonight we talk about his work on that film as well as his work as Thorin Oakenshiled in The Hobbit Films, as John Proctor in The Crucible, and his upcoming films Ocens 8 and the Julie Delpy directed film My Zoe.

Sleepwalker is Now Available on Digital HD and On Dem…

LAFF Review AND THEN THERE WAS EVE

2017
Directed By: Savannah Bloch
Starring: Tania Nolan, Rachel Crowl, Mary Holland, Karan Soni, John Kassir, and Anne Gee Byrd



Alyssa (Nolan) wakes up to find her home pillaged and her husband missing. The burglars have taken everything, down to the photos of her husband. The police offer little help so she turns to a friend of the family Eve (Crowl) for assistance. The film is less of a "who done it" and more of a "what happened."

The prolonged second act of the film focuses on the relationship between Eve and Alyssa. The suspense of the film lingers in the background while their relationship grows. In fact, clues of what is to come are clearly laid out in a way that allows the viewer to see where the film is headed before it gets there. I'm not sure if this is by design but the effect of having the stories trajectory clearly laid out gives the audience permission to accept this blossoming relationship.

Nolan and Crowl both give stunning performances that anc…

BFF review SWEET PARENTS

SWEET PARENTS review 2017
Directed By: David Bly
Starring: David Bly and Leah Rudick
Written By: David Bly and Leah Rudick

Moving to New York City with ambitions of making it as an artist is an uphill battle. Hell, moving to New York with ambitions of breaking into fast food is an uphill battle. Exorbitant rent makes it difficult if not impossible to get a temp job while you audition, paint, write, or sculpt. And paying $28 for an artisan PB&J not only has a heavy tax on your pocketbook, over time it can carry a greater burden on your soul. Spending tons of money to only feel like you are barely keeping your head above water is a crushing way to exist.

SWEET PARENTS is the story of a young couple who have been living the artists struggle in NYC for close to 8 years. Will has dreams of making it as a Chef and Gabby wants to become a professional sculptor. Both start side relationships, as last ditch efforts to support their careers, in what becomes a choice between ambition and lo…