Stirring is the second feature film from independent film company Fright Meter Films and writer/producer/director Troy Escamilla. Post production recently wrapped on our first film, Party Night, and early reviews have been very positive. As Party Night prepares to hit the festival circuit in 2017, Escamilla is eager to bring horror fans another blood soaked love letter to the genre he knows and loves. Stirring can best be described as a mix of Black Christmas (Troy's favorite horror film of all time), To All a Goodnight, and Scream.
Plot: Students attending a Christmas party at a sorority house with a sinister past are stalked by a bloodthirsty killer disguised as Mrs. Claus.
My love and respect for the horror genre has been a significant part of my life for as long as a can remember.
Until this past, I utilized my love and respect for the horror genre by creating and running the blog FrightMeter.com and being the founder and President of the Fright Meter Awards, an award I created solely to honor the best in horror annually. The Fright Meter Awards have grown in respect and popularity over the last few years. There are currently over 50 members that make up the Fright Meter Award Committee, including bloggers, writers, directors, producers, actors and others involved in some manner with the horror genre.
This past June, I fulfilled a lifelong dream of mine by producing and directing my first feature film Party Night, which was successfully funded here on Kickstarter in March. I wrote Party Night as a love letter to the 80's slasher films I grew up loving, such as Prom Night, Hell Night, and The Mutilator. Along with a dedicated, passionated, and extremely talented cast and crew, Party Night was shot in sixteen days. Post production was just completed and the film has already garnered some very positive early reviews (linked below).
Where Party Night is my love letter to 80's slasher flicks, Stirring is my homage to my favorite horror film of all time, 1974's Black Christmas.
As you can see, we are in the process of assembling an amazing cast of familiar faces in the horror community! Check back often as we add cast members!
Brinke Stevens will be taking on the role of Julie Cornell, a passionate campus police officer whose normally peaceful patrol routine is interrupted by a bloodthirsty killer.
Brinke is a horror icon and Scream Queen who has appeared in over 156 films, including the 80's cult classic "The Slumber Party Massacre." Her recent films include "Disciples", "Axeman", "Adam K", "Safe Inside", "Die Sister, Die!". She was featured in "The Psycho Legacy" documentary. Brinke also wrote and published her own comic book series, "Brinke of Destruction" and a sci fi novel, "Dangerous Toys". She co-produced two horror documentaries, "Shock Cinema" and "Something to Scream About", and also wrote and directed "Personal Demons” (2017 release).
Helene Udy will be portraying Mrs. Werner, a grieving mother seeking answers regarding the tragic loss of her daughter at a sorority house years before.
With over 60 film credits, Helene is no stranger to the horror genre, having appeared in the classic 1981 holiday slasher "My Bloody Valentine." She also appeared in David Cronenberg's 1983 film adaptation of Stephen King's novel "The Dead Zone," and recently wrapped production on "The Haunting of Mia Moss."
Kaylee Williams will be portraying Amber, the head sorority sister who oozes self importances and loves being in charge.
Kaylee has made quite a name for herself in the indie horror community these past few years, having appeared in such films as "Porkchop 3D," "III Slices of Life," "Model Hunger," and "The Lashman."
Billy Brannigan will be tackling the role of Kyle, the patient and understanding boyfriend who quickly realizes this holiday get together may not end well!! Billy studied at James Franco's Studio 4 and is building quite a resume for himself! He is also no stranger to Fright Meter Films, as he portrayed Travis in Party Night!
Drew Shotwell will be playing Jake, a carefree frat boy more interested in joking and partying than recognizing this particular night will be anything but calm and bright. Drew is also no stranger to Fright Meter Films, as he portrayed cool, calm and collected Nelson in Party Night!
Ryan Poole will be playing Grant, a cocky, but extremely charming frat boy who unfortunately is unaware that there is a creature stirring whose only gift is a lust for blood. We worked with Ryan previously on Party Night where he portrays cool boy Andrew, so we are familiar with his talent and dedication.
Jace Greenwood will be portraying Tyler, the serious and analytical freshman who reluctantly attends the ill fated sorority Christmas party for his own self serving purpose.
Jantel Fontenot will be portraying Monica, who is sociable and active, but definitely not as into sorority life as her sisters, though she does care strongly about her friends. She has a spunky side and definitely has not problem speaking her mind.
Hailey Strader will be portraying Danielle who is smart and personable, but has been deeply affected by the murder of her sister years before, particularly since she pledged the same sorority house where her sister was murdered.
Our current crew:
Derek is returning to Fright Meter Films, as he was the Director of Photography for Party Night! We are excited to have him return, as his work on Party Night was amazing and has been noted in many of the early reviews of the film. He recently has served as Director of Photography for several other films, including Captured and Roach.
While we were able to shoot Party Night on a true micro-budget, Stirring is definitely a larger undertaking, with more locations and a larger cast. While we have some independent funds set aside for production, we need to raise our Kickstarter goal to make this film happen.
Kickstarter is a great vehicle in which to try to raise the budget to allow us to film Stirring simply because it connects people who have an immense passion for a project with an audience who can then have a part in ensuring the project comes to fruition. Horror fans are generally some of the most fervent and loyal fans. Stirring is my love letter to the Christmas themed horror genre and its fans, but it cannot get made without your help. We need and want you to be part of this film by becoming a backer; as you can see there are great rewards available and anything helps!
Check out press and publicity for Party Night and Stirring!
SIT DOWN Interview with Writer and Director Troy Escamilla and stars Drew Shotwell and Billy Brannigan
Dread Central: Party Night Review
iHorror: Shocking Scares and Gore: Party Night Delivers
Pop Horror: Blood, Gore and More....Oh My!
Cinema Slasher: Party Night Review
The Horror Chamber: Party Night Review
Baron's Crypt Radio Show with Director Troy Escamilla
The Rotting Zombie: Party Night Review
The Horror Syndicate: Party Night Review
Risks and challenges
One challenge that specifically comes to mind is weather. Filming a Christmas themed horror movie in June in Houston will be tricky! However, much of the script takes places indoors, and true to Christmas horror fashion, the set will be extensively decorated!
Actors are human and sometimes emergencies arise. To cover this possible obstacle, we are securing alternate actors who will live in the immediate area and can step in if needed.
As long as we raise the funds necessary, the film WILL be made, just as "Party Night" was! Many of our the perks for backers of the "Party Night" campaign and the exclusive backer DVDs are being manufactured as we speak. We promise to keep you updated every step of the way!
However, one of the challenges will be getting the finished project seen. One way this will be accomplished is to submit the film to a variety of film festivals that cater to the horror genre.
- (45 days)