Quantcast Rolfe Kanesfsky interview 2

Writer/Director
Rolfe Kanefsky!!!

Nightmare Man starts out with Bill and Ellen, a couple clearly in trouble, with Ellen desperate to patch up their problems. Enter one mail ordered fertility mask, which is far too creepy to turn anyone on, and seems to haunt Ellen’s subconscious to the point of institutionalization.  On the way to the mental hospital Bill’s car runs out of gas and Ellen is left alone in the woods with the mask. The mask it seems holds an evil that is not entirely in Ellen’s head. The story picks up the pace once Ellen is confronted by the titular Nightmare Man and escapes into the woods finding protection from two couples in a cabin.  Once inside the cabin the two couples, (lead by Tiffany Shepis as Mia, the gun and cross-bow toting tomboy), contact Bill who informs them the Nightmare Man does not exist. This unfortunately leads them to let their guard down and before we know it we’re treated to multiple deaths, an interesting plot twist, and a touch of possession.


Director Rolfe Kanefsky is known for making genre pictures which may be low on budget but are high in fun and Nightmare Man is certainly no exception. This 80’s throwback delivers what’s expected with helpings of humor, T&A, and with a couple of impressive gore scenes thrown in Nightmare Man reminds one of a less-over-the-top Night of the Demons ,there’s even a cameo from Richard Moll of Night Court fame. Kanefsky makes this film a lot of fun from its quick pace to snappy dialogue; it even has a few good jumps in there. Along with a good story Nightmare man looks great with a clear picture even though much of the film takes place in the woods at night and features some strong performances from a cast who didn’t play the material for laughs as many may have. I also think it’s great to see Kannefsky get a shot at the big screen after making such enjoyable flicks as There’s Nothing Out There, The Hazing, and the near unseen Tomorrow By Midnight. - by Josh Gravel 11/07

Rolfe Kanefsky Interview

What was the inspiration for Nightmare Man?

NIGHTMARE MAN started as a scene of a movie within a movie from another script I wrote years ago. It was a three page scene where a couple is camping in the woods and a woman appears, running for her life and claiming that someone is trying to kill her. Two seconds later, a man appears chasing her and tells the camping couple that he is her doctor and she just escaped from a mental institution. So now the couple doesn’t know if the man is a killer or the woman is crazy. This then turns out to just be a scene from a movie that the main characters are watching on television. Well, I told this scene to a good friend and my film composer for the last ten years, Christopher Farrell, and he exclaimed, “That’s great! I want to see that movie!”

Well, flash forward a couple of years and I’m in post production on my flick JACQUELINE HYDE but I have a week to kill because the editing machines aren’t available. So, I’m sitting around bored and decide to write another screenplay but I needed an idea. I then remembered that scene and Chris’ reaction to it. So, I gave it a shot and seven days later, I had a finished first draft of NIGHTMARE MAN.
My idea was to take a seemingly simple story of a woman being stalked by a killer in the woods and finding a house where some young adults are vacationing but do it intelligently with some big surprises. Hopefully, it tricks the audience into feeling very confident that they know exactly where the story is going and then I pull the rug out from under them. Yes, the film does remind you of the 70’s and 80’s horror flicks but it does it with a twist. And of course, there are nods to TRILOGY OF TERROR, FRIDAY THE 13TH, and EVIL DEAD.


I notice you like to set films at cabins in wooded locales? Is there something particular about these locations which draw you there, or do you just have easy access to such locations?

Well, cabins in the woods are good places to put a limited amount of characters in an isolated location that is very doable on a small budget. The scenario works when done correctly even if it’s been done a million times before. It was actually quite difficult finding the right house for NIGHTMARE MAN because Los Angeles is not known for its’ cabins in the woods. Our first location fell through at the last minute and we had to scramble around to find a place that we could afford. Luckily, one of my producers, Esther Goodstein, suggested Big Bear, a wonderful community about two hours outside of L.A. Even though we would have to put up all the cast and crew in surrounding houses in the area, it was much more affordable than filming it in L.A.
I found the fertility mask to have quite an imposing look; it reminded me of the mask in the original DEMONS. Was there any specific influence for the mask?

The mask was very influenced by TRILOGY OF TERROR, namely the third story with the Zumi Warrior Doll. That’s what I was going for. Our effects guy did a great job designing the mask. It’s always been prominently featured on the poster. It’s on our original poster and the new After Dark Horrorfest poster. Both of which are really cool.
How did you attract the participation of Richard Moll?

Richard Moll happens to live in Big Bear and we had a lucky coincidence. When we were scouting locations in Big Bear, we ran into someone who knew him and offered to give him a call. I was with Esther and she happened to have worked with him on The Flintstones movie. They chatted and we offered him a role. He read his scene and agreed to do the part. He was a pleasure to work with and I hope to do it again soon.


Has your involvement in the After Dark Horror Fest brought any interest from larger distributors to some of your newer work?

Well, it’s a little too early to say just now. I’m hoping it does open some doors. I know the exposure is great and I am finally meeting with some agents and managers. At the moment, I still have no representation except for an entertainment lawyer, Darin Frank. I have a lot of scripts ready to go and I’m attached to some really cool projects. This past summer, my teen comedy PRETTY COOL TOO hit video stores and did really well. I also wrote a comedy entitled BLONDE AND BLONDER starring Pamela Anderson and Denise Richards that’s supposed to come out as a limited theatrical release before it hits DVD on Feb. 5 th 2008. Those are my two most recent releases besides NIGHTMARE MAN which will run theatrically from Nov. 9th – 18th 2007, hit DVD through Lions Gate in March time of 2008 and will play on Sci-Fi Channel next October.

What can we expect to see from you in the future? Possibly a Nightmare Man 2?

I hope the future holds a lot more movies. Currently, I wrote and am attached to direct a slasher film entitled CALLER UNKNOWN for producer Marc Frydman. Another recent horror script of mine, HORROR WORLD just won one of the top screenwriting awards at L.A. Shriekfest 2007. It is currently being shopped around town by producer Ed Tapia. I am also attached to a thriller entitled HITCHCOCK , NEBRASKA that I co-wrote with a college friend of mine Paul Carro. There’s a producer in Louisiana , Blaine McManus, trying to set up two of my favorite projects, NEVERMORE- a modern take on five tales of Edgar Allan Poe and DEMONS SUCK!- a supernatural comedy.
It’s my “ Abbott and Costello Meet the Demons”. I may also begin writing a dark comedy called SCRUFFY’S LAST STAND with my good friend, Gene Masse for Rigel Entertainment, the company handling the foreign sales on BLONDE AND BLONDER and then there’s the Tiffany Shepis projects. We are close friends and have a lot of potential movies together in works. A television series entitled TIFFANY SHEPIS PRESENTS ONCE UPON A HORROR- kind of like a “ Tales From The Crypt” show with Tiffany as the host.
There’s also a horror script called TWISTED which may be the ultimate vehicle for Tiffany. And a brand new project that I’m writing now that may mark Tiffany’s directing debut. More about that at a later time.

So in short, plenty of potential projects that just need to find some financing. And as for NIGHTMARE MAN 2… Well, I do have a treatment already written for a sequel. However, the deal with After Dark and Lions Gate gives them control of all sequels and remakes, so I have no idea if they will ever want a sequel. If the sales turn out to be really good then of course, a sequel will be discussed. I just hope they come back to me and Tiffany because we know how we want the story to continue. And, if you pay close attention to NIGHTMARE MAN, there are a handful of clues as to where the story is going next. But just for the record, it picks up exactly where the first one ends and there is a big surprise right at the beginning that I don’t think anyone will guess!

So, if you want to hear more, go check out NIGHTMARE MAN in the theaters and then buy the DVD which should have over 70 minutes of bonus material including a commentary track by myself, Tiffany, and Esther. And if it all sells well, then keep an eye out for NIGHTMARE WOMAN!


NIGHTMARE MAN Trailer

VISIT: www.RolfeKanefsky.com
and: www.NightmareManMovie.com


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