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Exclusive Interview – Toby Wilkins, director of Splinter

Posted by LiveFor on June 24, 2009

Splinter is an excellent horror movie. Creepy, scary and even though it only had a small budget it looks like it cost a lot more. It has a great creature knocking off a cast who act their socks off. It also leaves you pondering what caused the creature and a few well placed shots and comments mean you can have great discussions afterwards.

The highlight for me was the creature itself. At first you think it is a straight forward zombie kind of thing, but then things grow, mutate, stretch and crawl. Before you know it you are watching something rather different to the usual creature feature.

Trapped in an isolated gas station by a voracious Splinter parasite that
transforms its still living victims into deadly hosts, a young couple and an
escaped convict must find a way to work together to survive this primal
terror.


It stars Shea Whigham, Paulo Costanzo (Road Trip), Jill Wagner (who would make a great Wonder Woman), Rachel Kerbs, Charles Baker and Laurel Whitsett. Small cast, small set, big horror.

I really recommend the film (check out the review) and I was lucky enough to have a chance to ask the directer, Toby Wilkins, a few questions. It was a quick little interview via Twitter.

Describe Splinter to those who have not yet seen it

It’s a fast paced, gory indie horror film. My homage to the creature features and contained siege horror that I loved as a kid

The design and movement of the creature is creepy and quite unique. How did it develop?

The creature idea had been in my head for ages. Bringing it to life practically took many talented SFX artist and physical performers

How did you get into the film business?

I started in design, doing titles for films and some vfx, but always directing my own stuff on the side. I guess it was just will power.

What was the first film you ever watched?

I have no idea. In England we had just three TV channels, and the BBC would show great old movies, no ads, and I couldn’t get enough.

If you were going to be killed by any movie villain or monster who or what would it be? What would your last words be?

It would have to huge, like maybe the creature from The Host, and I would take it with me, with a cheesy quip like “Eat This!”

What will you do differently when making your next feature?

Hopefully I will get more time to shoot and rehearse, so far every film I have done has been on a pretty insane shooting schedule

Did the low budget help or hinder the feel of the film?

I think the film fit the budget well. A contained setting, very few characters, and we kep the energy high shooting as fast as we did.

What advice can you give to any new filmmakers filming this?

Just get out there and make films, shorts, whatever. Lots of them. Learn as much as you can from each, and then move on to the next.

What are your favourite films and what films are you most looking forward to seeing this year?

Alien, Blade Runner, 28 Days Later, The Game, 2001, The Ring, The Shining, Time Bandits, Inglourious Basterds, Where the Wild Things Are.

What are you working on next?

I’m not ready to announce anything just yet.

Thanks for your time Toby.

Check out Toby’s blog and follow him on Twitter.

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