Halloween Week: Interview with Redd Inc director Daniel Krige

Redd Inc was part of the feature film program at The Blue Mountains Film Festival and is a cracking, visceral Australian produced horror film. Director Dan Krige was kind enough to take the time to answer some questions about the film as part of Halloween Week. Be sure to like Dan’s facebook page here so you can keep up with all of his future work.

The cover of the Redd Inc DVD

You’re probably in a better position to give a quick synopsis of the film’s plot than me. What is it about?

Redd Inc is about a convicted serial killer who escapes from prison and goes about punishing those he holds responsible for his incarceration. He does this in a bizarre office setting, giving his “workers” the seemingly impossible task of proving his innocence. Or face the consequences.

How did you come to be involved with the film? Your first feature West is not a horror film, and you also wrote that movie, whereas this script was written by someone else.

The producer sent me the script a few years back. It was a great read and I’d never seen a horror movie set in an office before. It seemed to me the perfect setting for a horror film – the offices where many of us go to work are the settings of the most common master/servant enslavements. And with most of us having a mortgage or credit card debt, we’re all slaves to some kind of boss.

Is it more constraining, or liberating to work with someone else’s script, rather than one of your own?

A good script is a good script. And Redd Inc was a great read from the start. The main difference coming onto a project that is pre-existing, is that you have to find your own take on it, the way to make it personal for yourself. And that was easy with Redd Inc – we’ve all felt like we’ve been chained to the desk at some time in our lives.

Director of Redd Inc, Dan Krige.

Making a low budget genre film in Australia, what were the major challenges you faced making the film?

The main challenge was the tight schedule. Getting everything shot in a very short amount of time. But I’ve learned that if you plan meticulously, you can get the day shot and the performances you’re after.

The cast is a good mix of experienced recognisable faces such as Nicholas Hope and Alan Dukes, as well as some younger actors that were not familiar to me. What was the approach to casting the film?

It was important to me to cast the two main roles of Thomas Reddman and Annabelle first, as the top of the cast “pyramid” if you like, and build the rest of the cast beneath them. So once I had Nicholas Hope and Kelly Paterniti cast, then I looked for other actors to compliment them.

The characters generally speak in American accents. Was this decided upon to increase chances of overseas distribution, or are there other reasons behind this as well?

Yeah, it was decided early on to set it “somewhere” in America. To me, American English is the international language of the English-speaking film world. There was nothing particularly Australian about the story, so there was no reason to set it here. And yes, it has helped immensely with international sale. Redd Inc is being released in North America in January under the title Inhuman Resources.

Tell us about your gore guy. Who he is and how you managed to get him to work on the film? Also, could you explain a little about the importance of gore guys generally in horror culture?

Saying the same “Tom Savini” to a horror fan is like saying “John Lennon” to a Beatles fan. Tom is known as the “godfather of gore”. his pioneering special effects make-up is second to none and his credits include Friday the 13th, Dawn of the Dead and Creepshow to name a few. Hardcore horror fans are more interested in the pedigree of the guy who does the gore than the director of the film (especially when the director is an unknown like me). So getting Tom Savini on board really put Redd Inc on the map in terms of the horror world. As far as getting him to work on the film, he had officially retired from special effects make up, but once he read the script he decided to come on the Redd Inc ride, which was a real coup for us.

One of the interesting aspects of the film, is that unlike many horror films it does not present an entirely black and white view of the good vs evil divide. Could you explain the idea of the anti-hero in this film?

I’ve always been interested in the anti-hero. My first feature West plays with the black and white moral boundaries and I really wanted to explore that idea in the world of horror, which is traditionally very black-and-white or good-versus-evil. Many audience members have said they ended up feeling sorry for the character of Redd at the end of the film, despite the terrible things he does. That’s the highest compliment to me.

Obviously Halloween is coming up soon. Give us your all time greatest horror movie marathon

An American werewolf in London, Audition, Deep Red, Rec, Friday the 13th, Halloween and of course Redd Inc.

What’s next for you, anything we should be keeping an eye out for in the near future?

There’s a few things in the pipeline. You can catch me on the ABC tv series Redfern Now which hits the screens very soon. I’m also shooting a comedy about cricket called Backyard Ashes in Wagga Wagga next month. And I have a feature with one of the US studios that will shoot late next year, all things being equal.

If people want to check Redd Inc. out, where should they be looking?

Redd Inc is available at jb hi-fi, iTunes, Bigpond movies, and all good DVD outlets, like Video Ezy and Blockbuster. It’s the perfect movie to watch at Halloween!

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