Q: What all did your job as producer and assistant director on SPM 2 entail?
A: My job on the film was to serve as Producer, Production Manager and first Assistant Director and thatís quite a bit to bite off. I could not had done it if had I not had a great staff. Tom Milo served as my 2nd assistant and Kathleen Courtney was my Production Coordinator, those two made such a massive undertaking possible. Quite simply, my job was to find a way to give the director, Deborah Brock all the personnel, tools and time that she needed to fulfill her vision, while working with a tremendously tight budget.
Q: What is your take on the ending for SPM 2? Was Courtney just crazy and dreamed/imagined the entire thing, or did everything really happen?
A: Oh, it happened!
Q: In the beginning credits for SPM 2, there is a shot of Courtneyís mother standing up and crying with a huge gash in her head. Was this only shot for Courtneyís nightmare sequence or was this a death scene left on the cutting room floor?
A: It was only a nightmare.
Q: Speaking of deleted scenes, what (if anything) was left out of the film?
A: Deborah is very good at planning. I donít think there were any scenes shot that didnít make it into the final film.
Q: Is there any merit as to some sites claiming that the filmís uncut running time being 90 minutes, or is that just an approximated running time?
A: Itís an estimate.
Q: Iíve always wondered about this and you probably havenít noticed it, but when Courtney and Matt enter Amyís backyard after the band practices, there is a black bar at the bottom of the frame which slowly moves down. Itís very similar to the black bars you see when a movie is matted for a theatrical exhibition. Does this have something to do with all the VHS and DVD releases being full frame, when it was actually supposed to be presented in a letterbox format? I notice little things like this and was also curious as to what the filmís true aspect ratio is.
A: I believe we shot the film 1.85 for theatrical exhibition, so Iím guessing that the reason for the moving matte.
Q: While reading Jason Paul Collumís excellent SPM retrospective for Femme Fatales Magazine (Issue 9:3, Aug. 2000), I recall reading that the film was originally not a SPM film and Crystal Bernard was less than thrilled when she learned of the change. How much of a transition did the film make from the initial script into what it is now, along with title changes?
A: We always knew it was a SPM film, we gave it the title ďDonít Let GoĒ to make negotiating easier.
Q: Do you know if Robin Stille, Jennifer Myers, or Michelle Michaels were at any point considered to reprise their respective roles as Valerie, Courtney, and Trish in SPM 2?
A: To the best of my recollection, we never considered them for the roles.
Q: In the original SPM, Trishís last name is Deveraux, but is Craven when Courtney mentions her in SPM 2. Was this an intentional change, as to pay homage to Wes Craven? I also noticed a few other nods to horror characters, such as Sally Burns (Marilyn Burns who played Sally Hardesty in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre), Officer Voorhees, and Officer Krueger.
A: Yes, it was defiantly homage to Wes.
Q: Regarding her characterís wardrobe on the film, Heidi Kozak mentioned in the Femme Fatales article, "My jean shorts suddenly started getting shorter every day. Somebody was cutting the fringe a little more each morning until they were so short, I eventually had to get a new pair." (pg. 18) Do you have any insight behind this story or have any other amusing or interesting on-the-set stories?
Q: The film is listed on imdB as being released on Oct. 30, 1987. Was this a theatrical or straight-to-video release? How well did the movie do?
A: We had a respectable limited theatrical release and then when the film was released on tape (Oct. 30, 1987) it was in the top sellers for a good while and was awarded a ďGold VideocassetteĒ
Q: Another thing mentioned by Heidi Kozak in the Femme Fatales article was that the building in which the movie was filmed had to be destroyed because it had become so infested by real cockroaches that were used in a previous Concorde film, The Nest. How bad was this experience, and do you remember any of the specific locations used for the movie?
A: The set was infested, for sure and that was a major problem. The building was fumigated quite a few times and some of those little buggers survived the first few attempts. We finally prevailed. We did have to reschedule, to shoot exteriors for a few days, however. The stage stood and was used for years afterwards.
Q: Was there any relation between James Cummins who did the make-up for the film and actress Juliette Cummins?
A: Not that I remember.
Iíve always been a fan of Richard Coxís score for the film, along with all the other music for the movie. Many fans have asked me where they can acquire the score and music featured in the movie. I purchased Wednesday Weekís What We Had album for the two girl band songs in the film, but are you aware of any way to acquire the score or music featured in the film?
A: No, not really. Iíll inquire for you.
Q: What is your overall recollection of the cast and crew? Anyone that you especially enjoyed working with or anyone that was difficult?
A: We had a delightful crew and many very talented performers. I worked with Deborah quite a few times after this collaboration. We did RockíníRoll High School Forever and Andy Colby and we have worked together on quite a few other projects that have yet to be made.
Q: The New Concorde DVD is currently out-of-print, and Disney has acquired the rights to Roger Cormanís library. I would definitely love special edition reissues of the movies, considering all of the movies except SPM 1 are presented full-frame with a trailer as their only extra. Do you have any knowledge as to if any of the movies will get re-released?
A: No, I donít, but if I hear of anything, Iíll let you know.
Q: A few years back, somebody claiming to be Deborah Brock contacted me via the forum on the website. When I attempted to e-mail her back, I never got a response. Do you have any clue as to how to contact her or anybody else involved with the film?
A: Yes, I hear from a few of the folks from time to time, I heard from Deborah just the other day and she is preparing to shoot a new film HANNAH AMAZON, Tom Callaway our director of photography and I have worked together quite a few times since SPM 2 and our wonderful coordinator, Kathleen Courtney are in touch on a regular basis.
Q: Iím also a fan of another film you produced, Slave Girls from Beyond Infinity. What all can you tell me about that film, and what was it like working with Elizabeth Kaitan and Brinke Stevens?
A: Brinke Stevens is a very smart, spiritual and talented lady and she was a joy to work with. We tried to do another project together afterwards, but it never jelled.
Q: You are listed on imdB as being part of ďRisk ManagementĒ on the set of Evita. Is this a true credit, and what all did that job entail? Iím a huge Madonna fan, and I had to ask. If you got to meet her, please let me know what she is really like!
A: I was the only crew member not hired by Allan Parker and as a Supervising Producer; my job was to over see the project and determine if money was ďat riskĒ. Since Allan and I did not get along, I was left out of the credits. Madonna and I worked closely on the film and she was a dream to work with. Her professionalism and focus is awe-inspiring.
Q: How did you break into the business, and what are doing today?
A: I knew, when I was in college, that I wanted to be a filmmaker. I worked my way though school, shooting film and video for whoever would hire me. I shot sporting events for companies like Turner and ESPN and commercials and industrial until I got hired on my first feature film. The experience was like nothing I had experienced before, much like joining the circus.
Q: Do you know how many different drills were used for the film and where the guitar drill went off to?
A: I believe we had two rigs, one for show and one for drilling. The hero guitar hung on Deborahís wall for quite a few years and, I heard that she eventually sold it on ebay.
SPM 4 almost happened a few years back with Jim Wynorski's Cheerleader Massacre, but an official sequel has yet to be made.† Would you ever be up to making another SPM movie?
A: I think Jim would be perfect to do a sequel. Making a picture like this is very hard work and unless there is substantial backing I would not be interested.
Thank you very much to Don for contacting me and making this interview possible...and possibly a couple more interviews possible? (hint, hint) Here is some additional information Don gave me about SPM 2 after the interview:
It was fun going back over SPM 2, for the most part if was fun to relive. The one story that was not so great, that I not sure I told you was the night we shot the ending of the film. We were trying out a new caterer and they wanted to impress us. What the served made a huge impression, but not a positive one, 8 -10 of us came down with food poisoning. Including a couple of the camera operators and myself. Once we had all puked our guts out, the stunt guys were finally ready. I think it was the first time our stunt man had ever taken a high fall while on fire. Anyway the first take, you can clearly see his fire mask. The even put that picture on some of the box art. The shot was unusable for our needs and we requested another take, The stunt guy was reluctant but we prevailed and ended up getting the shot just before sunrise.
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