Next up in our #FestiveFrights programme is Trevor Dillon and Ian Hock’s Foxwood, a post-modern slasher which cleverly riffs on classic horror conventions and expectations. Set on a cold winter’s night, a young couple head out on a blind date which ends in a surprisingly monstrous turn – a summary which barely scratches the surface of what Dillon and Hock’s film achieves. Twelve Cabins spoke with the co-directors about the influences behind Foxwood, creating a post-modern horror, and the current outlook for the debut feature.
How did you both create the concept for Foxwood?
It’s probably no surprise, but the idea was born out of our deep love for horror. Like most indie filmmakers, we were bound by an extremely small budget, so that meant concepts friendly to “backyard filmmaking.” With that in mind, a suburban slasher with a twist became the most appealing. We could shoot around the community we lived in, while working to capture something fun and cinematic.
It feels akin to post-modern horror like Scream or Cabin in the Woods, did you draw from those films at all? What inspired you to twist classic horror conventions?
We’re so glad to hear that. That’s great company to be in. An angle of post-modern horror was definitely the intention with Foxwood, so films like Scream and Cabin in the Woods were definitely on our minds. Though we tried to distance ourselves from them narratively, we found ourselves inspired by their comedy and tone. They’re awesome rides with twists and turns, but at the end of the day, they don’t take themselves too seriously. That’s exactly what we wanted for Foxwood. In regards to spinning classic horror conventions, we had always wanted to do it from the beginning. It made the most sense in the context of a comedy, especially with the toying of gender roles within a slasher.
The score was amazing! It totally underpins everything but also makes even more sense, given the end of the film. Who did you work with on it? And what were you looking for when developing it thank you so much!
We’re extremely proud of the score and its themes. It was composed by Andrew Scott Bell. He’s a great friend of ours and an incredible talent. Like most elements of Foxwood, we wanted a score that felt fresh and exciting, but also felt rooted in iconic horror classics. Inspirations include the work of John Carpenter and Bernard Herrmann.
It’s quite an ambitious film too, how was production? Did it take a while to shoot? Did you encounter any challenges?
Thank you! Production went fairly well, but it always has its challenges no matter how much you plan. Foxwood was four overnights shot back-to-back, plus an additional night for what we call the monster epilogue. The night exteriors were the toughest by far. We faced a rough combo of rain, freezing temperatures, and extremely high winds.
How much fun was it to create all the additional scenarios at the end?
It was a blast to say the least. It was so fun to execute with all the different monsters, and we loved the idea of teasing a bigger world.
What’s next for both of you?
2020 has been…2020 but we released our second short film, The Vicious. Since then, we’ve spent the year writing a slew of horror features, and are planning to shoot our first in 2021. It’s a queer slasher called Merry Christmas, Madeline and is set in a cinema on a cold Christmas Eve. Influences include two of our favourites, Black Christmas (1974) and The House of the Devil. We look forward to getting it going!
If you’d like to watch more Christmas-set horror shorts that are featuring throughout December as part of our #FestiveFrights programme, click here.