Exclusive Interview: Director Marcel Walz on his BLOOD FEAST Remake

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SHOCK talks to the man behind the remake of gore classic BLOOD FEAST.

We’ve been talking plenty about director Marcel Walz’s BLOOD FEAST remake , the deep, dark refreshingly baroque and trashy revisit to the house that H.G. Lewis built, the splatter classic that invented the very idea of the “gore film”.

In it, Robert Rusler (VAMP, A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 2) plays the dreaded Fuad Ramses, a family man who opens up a diner in France and proceeds to lose his marbles…and gain an ungodly appetite for human flesh.

SHOCK talked to Walz about the film in this exclusive chat. Have a read…

SHOCK: Why BLOOD FEAST? What was it about that film that made you want to revisit it?

WALZ: I first got in touch with the original BLOOD FEAST while watching John Waters’ SERIAL MOM. Really, I am not kidding, I saw these short scenes within SERIAL MOM and shortly thereafter I was able to watch the original film. About the remake itself, while I was on promotion tour in the U.S. for one of my last movies, I met the CEO of GUNDO Entertainment and he came up with the idea of making a remake of BLOOD FEAST. Finally they really asked me if I would like to direct and of course, I said YES.
As the original BLOOD FEAST is the first splatter movie in motion picture history, Herschell Gordon Lewis has created something really special, for me the start in splatter movies and of course I did not have to think about directing the remake, I was a honor for me being asked. And I still ask myself, why they asked me, but I am really proud that GUNDO Entertainment trusted me and supported me during the whole shooting process. 

SHOCK: Was Lewis involved creatively at all?

WALZ: Herschell was involved in this project from the very beginning, he really liked the idea and the development of the story and the characters. Especially that the goddess Ishtar is played by a real actor this time and, as you know, he also did a short cameo in this remake.

SHOCK: The actors play the film straight. And yet…there is still humor! Would you call this a black comedy?

WALZ: Both the screenwriter Phillip Lilienschwarz and I wanted to make a straight movie, compared to the original, but we also wanted to keep the humor of the original, like a family drama with extreme splatter effects. One of my favorite scenes in the movie is the finale and yes you can call this black comedy. Our editor Kai Bogatzki and our composer Klaus Pfreundner really did a great job. 

SHOCK: Rusler just goes for it. Can you talk about his performance as Fuad?

WALZ: Robert Rusler was definitely the perfect choice playing Fuad Ramses; for all of us Robert did more then just acting or playing a role, he did such a great job.  I can not think of anybody else as Fuad Ramses, Robert did not only act as Fuad, during the shoot he was Fuad Ramses for all of us. Besides his great performance Robert is a friend for me now, I am more than happy that I was able to work with him. It was so much fun, we all had a great time.

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SHOCK: I liked the idea of Ishtar being a delusion; was this always the way you intended to play her?

WALZ: Absolutely, it was planned from the very beginning that Ishtar will be played by a real actor, but leave it to the audience if Ishtar is real or just a illusion (figment) of Fuad Ramses. We found our perfect Ishtar in Sadie Katz. I had seen her in WRONG TURN 6 and was so fascinated by her eyes and she is definitely the right choice for playing Ishtar. Being the goddess of love and hiding a secret that fascinates not only Fuad but will also fascinate the audience I think.

SHOCK: The gore here is plentiful and gross; can you talk about FX artist Ryan Nicholson’s work?

WALZ: Ryan Nicholson and his wife Megan….wow…they did such a amazing job. We all decided not to use any CGI gore effects, cause I and the fans want to see real handmade special effects, and yes Ryan and Megan are the right ones for this job. They built such realistic effects, were prepared the shooting for the next day, when I asked for some changes, they worked so hard, even during the night just to be ready to shoot the next day.  They know what I expect and I know that I can count on them when working together, but besides this our deep friendship connects us even though we live thousand miles apart.

SHOCK: Caroline Williams makes a great comeback here in a serious role…

WALZ: Caroline and I first met in Los Angeles in 2012 where we had a meeting for one of my previous movies. Caroline is such a wonderful and lovely person that uses all her energy to support a project she is involved. After working with her in 2013 she was my first choice for playing Louise Ramses. She did such a amazing job, what shall I say, thank you Caroline for your spirit and power and for giving your personal touch to Louise…

SHOCK: Are you personally happy with the film you’ve made?

WALZ: Definitely, I am more than happy, everybody involved made this movie to something very special, they did such a great work with so much passion. Everybody loved to work and to be involved in this project.  Thank you at this point to all of you guys, thank you to Gundo Entertainment for supporting me, and thank you to our whole cast and crew for making BLOOD FEAST.
And I hope that the audience will love to watch our movie as much as we loved to work on it…

BLOOD FEAST will open later this year. We’ll keep you updated on that date and in the meantime, look for more BLOOD FEAST coverage on this very site…