A screwball comedy about Betty, who discovers her new breast implants are monsters hell bent on world domination.
A screwball comedy about Betty, who discovers her new breast implants are monsters hell bent on world domination. Read more
About this project
KILLER RACK is a feature length screwball comedy about a woman whose new breast implants turn out to be Lovecraftian monsters hell bent on world domination!
The film will be directed by author and filmmaker Gregory Lamberson and is written by actor Paul McGinnis, and they are producing it along with special effects master Rod Durick. The filmmakers' goal is a lofty one: to create nothing short of a cult comedy classic, one that will be celebrated by comedy lovers for years to come regardless of their interest in horror films. We have no intention of a making a crap film!
Poor Betty is unhappy with her love life, her work life, and her life-life, and blames her problems on her small breasts. Determined to change her life for the better, Betty consults with a breast enhancement surgeon, Dr. Thulu, who harbors a diabolical plan to take over the world.
Betty has the surgery, and her life does indeed improve: she takes the upper hand in her romantic and work relationships, and learns what it's like to be empowered. But there are strange side effects: at night, while she's asleep, the Boobs take control of her body and guide her through the city streets, searching for men to seduce...and devour.
Betty becomes suspicious one morning when she awakens wearing a blood soaked shirt. The only person she can turn to for help is Tim, a co-worker who has admired her from afar for a long time...but will she seek Tim's help in time to save the entire world from her new puppies?
The humor in KILLER RACK operates on a number of levels. First and foremost, it is a screwball comedy. There is, of course, boob humor; battle of the sexes humor; nerd humor; smart humor; juvenile humor; relationship humor; slapstick humor; and spoofy horror humor. This is a story about a woman fighting to succeed in a sexist male world in which women are objectified, but it is also a story of female empowerment. Despite the risque subject matter, this is not a tacky sexploitation film; it has a sweet nature and love story at its core, like the musical version of LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS. But it still has the Boobs and adult themes. Call it "a soft R." The script is H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S, with a playful, but not offensive, tone.
FANGORIA magazine called Gregory Lamberson, who has been making independent films for thirty years, "the busiest man in horror." Lamberson got his start on the horror comedy I WAS A TEENAGE ZOMBIE, on which he worked as production manager, before he wrote and directed SLIME CITY, which became an international cult film, at age 21. Lamberson worked as 1st Assistant Director on Frank Henenlotter's cult classic BRAIN DAMAGE; on PLUTONIUM BABY (don't blame him!); and on the crime drama WEST NEW YORK (starring Vincent Pastore, Frank Vincent and Dan Grimaldi from THE SOPRANOS). Lamberson's follow up features UNDYING LOVE and NAKED FEAR did not catch on like SLIME CITY did, so Lamberson turned to writing novels. He has had ten books published, including JOHNNY GRUESOME, the occult detective series THE JAKE HELMAN FILES and the werewolf series THE FRENZY CYCLE. His zombie novella CARNAGE ROAD is currently under option by actor Craig Sheffer, and his filmmaking book CHEAP SCARES: LOW BUDGET HORROR FILMMAKERS SHARE THEIR SECRETS was nominated for a Bram Stoker Award. This summer, Medallion Press will publish his novel THE JULIAN YEAR as the first TREEbook (Timed Reading Experience E-book), a unique e-book platform for iPads utilizing time triggers and seamless branching technology.
Lamberson's first love will always be filmmaking, and in 2009 he wrote, directed and produced a sequel, SLIME CITY MASSACRE, which received rave reviews and was released on DVD by Media Blasters. He followed that up by producing Sam Qualiana's SNOW SHARK: ANCIENT SNOW BEAST, a $6,000 film which was carried by Family Video; working as the Line Producer on Debbie Rochon's directorial debut, MODEL HUNGER; working as 1st AD on Chris Olen Ray's BATTLEDOGS, which premiered on SyFy; writing and co-directing the horror comedy DRY BONES, which will be released on DVD in September; and producing Qualiana's THE LEGEND OF SIX FINGERS, which will be available on DVD in June. Lamberson is also one of the co-founders of Buffalo Dreams Fantastic Film Festival. He is the director and co-producer of KILLER RACK.
Paul McGinnis is an actor and lifelong fan of comedy and horror. He has appeared in many theater productions in Western New York, and his first film work was as an extra in Gregory Lamberson's SLIME CITY MASSACRE. Roles in other local films followed, including a substantial supporting part in Lamberson's DRY BONES, which will be released on DVD in September, and in Troma's RETURN TO NUKE EM HIGH VOLUME 1. McGinnis submitted an original screenplay, MALL GRIZZLY, to Lamberson's Buffalo Screams Horror Film Festival "screamplay" competition. The script didn't win, but Lamberson did offer McGinnis encouragement and some basic lessons on screenplay format and structure. Using this new knowledge, McGinnis submitted his second script, KILLER RACK, to the festival, where guest judge Joseph O'Brien (ROBOCOP: PRIME DIRECTIVES, THE DEVIL'S MILE) selected it as the winner. When Lamberson finally read the screenplay himself, he knew he had to direct it, and formed a partnership with McGinnis, who will also play Tim, the office worker who loves Betty from afar. McGinnis is the screenwriter and co-producer of KILLER RACK.
Rod Durick was the special make-up effects supervisor on Gregory Lamberson's SLIME CITY MASSACRE and has worked on several other Buffalo, New York based films, including Lamberson's DRY BONES. Buffalo Screams Horror Film Festival named him "Best Western New York Special Make-Up Effects Artist." Durick is the author of the book FILMING THE UNDEAD: HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN ZOMBIE MOVIE. He directed a short film called THE CAMPER, which he made with KILLER RACK screenwriter Paul McGinnis. Unknown to Lamberson, Durick intended to direct KILLER RACK himself. After Lamberson usurped Durick's authority, he made Durick a co-producer on the film. Since then, Durick served as cinematographer on GAVE UP THE GHOST, a short film produced and directed by Lamberson, co-starring McGinnis, which will be included in the feature anthology CREEPERS. Durick is a carpenter who has built props and sets, making him the perfect person to round out the key creative team.
The foundation for any good film is a good screenplay, and we've got a great one. Having the right cast is crucial to making a good comedy!
Debbie Rochon, an indie actress who has appeared in over 230 films, has worked with Lamberson numerous times, including on SLIME CITY MASSACRE, for which she won Best Actress at Eerie Horror Film Festival; her directorial debut MODEL HUNGER; the SyFy movie BATTLEDOGS; and DRY BONES, for which she won Best Supporting Actress at PollyGrind FIlm Festival in Las Vegas. Lamberson once asked Rochon what role she still wanted to play, and she replied, "A mad scientist." When Lamberson read KILLER RACK, he immediately thought of Rochon for the evil Dr. Thulu - and it turned out McGinnis had her in mind when he wrote the script. Brilliant minds think alike! Debbie is also a regular columnist for FANGORIA magazine.
The role of Betty calls for an actress who understands verbal and physical comedy. Really, the entire film hangs on her shoulders. Paul McGinnis and Rod Durick had worked with Jessica Zwolak on their short film THE CAMPER, and McGinnis and Michael O'Hear cast her in DRY BONES, which O'Hear and Lamberson co-directed. Zwolak proved herself a talented comic actress, and recently played multiple parts in Lamberson's short film GAVE UP THE GHOST. McGinnis saw her as the perfect Betty, and Lamberson agrees. Cult stardom awaits her!
The great Lloyd Kaufman of Troma fame is not attached to KILLER RACK...yet. However, we want him for a role, and he has expressed an interest in playing that role. It all comes down to timing and availability. If things work out, Lloyd will have a small but pivotal role (not a cameo) which will delight his legions of fans.
OTHER ROLES will be played by some of the best actors in Buffalo and beyond: Sam Qualiana (SNOW SHARK: ANCIENT SNOW BEAST) will play Dutch, Betty's inattentive boyfriend; Michael O'Hear (DRY BONES) and Alexander McBryde (SLIME CITY MASSACRE) will play Bartles and James, two stereotypical detectives; Samantha Hoy (MODEL HUNGER) will play Sandrah, Betty's rival at work; author Sephera Giron (SLIME CITY MASSACRE) will play a gypsy; and David Marancik (RAZOR DAYS) will play Dr. Thulu's long suffering version of Igor. All actor commitments are subject to availability.
KILLER RACK is a comedy first and a horror-comedy second. During the first hour, the requisite murders by the Boobs occur off screen in several cleverly staged scenarios; then, during the last half hour, everything EXPLODES off the screen! We will be utilizing several techniques to enhance and exaggerate Betty's new "puppies," and will also be employing puppetry and stop motion animation for the over-the-top climax. Arick Szymecki, who created special make-up and visual effects for SLIME CITY MASSACRE and DRY BONES, is our Special Effects Supervisor.
KILLER RACK will shoot primarily over weekends around Buffalo, New York this summer. We need to build one standing set on a certified sound stage to qualify for the New York State tax incentive. We're also exploring the possibility of shooting at a facility where we can shoot 80% of the film, and plan to shoot at Niagara Falls as well. The NYS tax program provides filmmakers with a 40% return on Qualified Costs. This return will enable us to submit the film to festivals and promote it in other ways.
With a name like KILLER RACK, there HAS to be a killer theme song! And an animated title sequence. That's the plan, Stan.
We already have over 1,000 followers on our Facebook page, and you can check out the kind of response this project has been getting so far : https://www.facebook.com/KillerRack
Our teaser poster, which calls to mind MAD magazine the work of the great R. Crumb, and zany 80s comedies like ZAPPED!, was created by the talented Kelly Forbes, who is an art director for FANGORIA magazine. Our concept illustrations were created by David Setlik and Arick Szyemcki. Look, laugh - and imagine them on a big screen. Visualizing a film in advance is a cornerstone of good "development."
We need $25,000 to make this movie. That probably doesn't sound like a lot to a layman, but DRY BONES cost $15,000 and has excellent production values. We can make a damn good film for this money - but we need your help. And because New York State has the most aggressive tax incentive program in the country, we stand to make back up to 40% of our qualified costs.
So how will the money be spent? We'll have a small, dedicated and talented crew who will be donating a lot of their time and equipment, but we have to pay them something. We will also have a number of professional actors we'll need to fly to Buffalo, house, and feed three square meals a day. We need production insurance to shoot on the streets of Buffalo, and at Niagara Falls. To qualify for the tax incentive program, we need to shoot on a certified sound stage for one day, and build a standing set with three walls. Good special effects and stop motion animation also cost money. And we need to feed our people! Money goes fast. But again, we can do it - with your support.
KICKSTARTER RULES: THE WHOLE SHEBANG
The way Kickstarter works, we must raise the entire $25,000 or we don't see a dime of your pledged contributions. If we reach $24,000 in pledges from people who see what a worthwhile project this is, we receive none of it. We could have set a lower goal for ourselves, but then we'd have to sacrifice quality, and we don't want to do that. This is a passion project because we know how good it's going to be. It's a real opportunity for all of us to create something that will be remembered for a long time - and we want you to be a part of it.
LETTER FROM THE DIRECTOR: WHY YOU SHOULD DONATE TO KILLER RACK
Hopefully you've watched our Kickstarter video and read our pitch. Now I'm going to tell you why I believe you should contribute to this project, and I'll lay it out for you straight. I don't know any other way.
1. Talent: Paul McGinnis has written one of the best screenplays I've ever read, and certainly the funniest. That's so important. We have assembled a genuinely talented cast, and I've built solid relationships with some of the best crew people in Buffalo. We're determined to make a movie that will be entertaining - and one you can be proud to see your name on. I'm convinced this film has the potential to become a cult classic, and not just another quickie. bottom of the barrel effort.
2. Assurance: If we raise our budget, we're making this movie. We'll shoot it over the summer, and we'll finish it before the end of the year (so we can receive the tax incentive credit to use for marketing). I've never started a film I didn't finish, and everything I've worked on has been released on DVD (at least). You're not going to be left scratching your head and wondering, "Whatever happened to that crazy project I donated money to?" If we reach our fundraising goal, you will see the finished film.
3. Confidence: Please re-read #2 again. So many projects that seek crowd funding never get made/finished even though they reach their fundraising goal. That isn't going to happen with KILLER RACK. We have a track record for completing projects in a timely manner, and we really want to make this movie. We will not squander your money.
4. Quality: As noted in the above pitch, I've been doing this for 30 years. I've only been able to scratch out a living between my filmmaking endeavors and novels. I keep doing it because I have to - it's in my blood. But it's getting harder and harder to raise money through private investors. Why? Straight talk: there's a glut in the market. Too many people are making indie films. Also, indie distributors pay little or no advances, and can take years to pay any royalties. I honestly can't take money from an investor unless I believe he'll make his money back, and that's just getting harder to do in this industry. Our film is going to stand out; it will attract people with its outrageous subject matter and win them over with its heart.
5. Originality: I'm not going to make derogatory remarks about other people or their projects. I will say that celebrities and professionals who make their living in a particular industry should not have to turn to you to fund their projects; they should be able to do it through their connections and associates. And I question the logic of funding fan films based on copyrighted characters. Our film is an original piece of work, and it will find an audience based on its merits. It will also be released because it will be releasable!
6. Entertainment Value: Most of all, I want to stress how entertaining this film will be, and how grateful we will be to get the chance to make it. We really are looking for donors who want to be part of something special.What matters to us is making a good film that people will enjoy. To do that, it's important that every dollar goes on screen, and we need supporters who understand that.
On a personal note, I'll reiterate that I've been working on micro-budget films for three decades, and my primary interest has bee to contribute something memorable to the horror genre. Even though KILLER RACK is primarily a comedy, I believe it's that special project that will resonate with an audience. I laughed out loud when I read it...and when I re-read it...and I took Paul McGinnis out for coffee and told him I had to direct it. It's as much a passion project for me as my own screenplays have been.
Thanks for your time and consideration, please consider contributing as much as you can, and help us spread the word about KILLER RACK!
Risks and challenges
An additional note from producer/Director Gregory Lamberson
In the past, I've formed Limited Partnerships and Joint Venture Agreements to fund my micro-budget movies. In each case, my contracts with investors have included - in bold writing, not small print - disclaimers to the effect that "investing in a motion picture is always a high risk," and that there is "always a possibility that a motion picture may not even be completed," followed by a warning that people should not invest in movies "unless you can afford to lose your entire contribution." I've always dealt with investors in an honest manner, and never promised them a return. But all of my films have been completed, and all of them have been distributed, and most of my investors have seen some, if not most, of their money returned. The DVD market is not what it used to be - I can get my films distributed and marketed, but I feel less confident that my investors will see a fair return on their investment, which is why I'm turning to you, generous supporters of the arts.
Look, any number of things can delay an indie film: re-shoots, poor sound recording, you name it. But the last two I directed and the last two I produced were completed within six months of principal photography. I make sure my shooter and sound mixer know what they're doing; I have a qualified lighter; I cast talented actors; and I use an excellent professional editor who handles all of my post production needs. There are no guarantees in life, but I can tell you with absolute confidence that this film will be completed in a timely manner, and me and my partners will treat the promised perks with the same professional reliability.
Disasters can happen, but I'm a firm believer in careful pre-production planning, and we will have production insurance during principal photography. There are no dangerous stunts, and we will take every precaution to make sure things run smoothly. This is far from our first rodeo, but it's going to be our best one.
Non-disaster delays occur as well. We have a unique creature for the end of our film, and if the puppet isn't ready when we need it, or if it's temperamental on the day, we may have to shoot it later. Or maybe our soundtrack will take longer to complete than our scores have in the past. Or maybe one of the funniest scenes in the script just doesn't play in the finished film, and rather than leave it or cut it, we decide to take another crack at it. These things happen in the world of filmmaking when you want to make the best film possible.
As far as rewards go, we will be paying for most of them, and for shipping, out of the film's budget.
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