Q&A with Matt Richards, Director of “The Disappearance of Willie Bingham”
ALTER: Name a Horror character you relate to on a spiritual level. Who is your Horror spirit animal?
MATT RICHARDS: Norman Bates. Psych horror is so much more powerful than imagined horror.
A: You’ve gotta go through some bad ideas to get to the good ones. Tell us one of your bad ideas. How do you get past the bad ones to find your spark?
MR: I’m a big fan of not self-censoring. Just try to spit it out on the page without judging it. Sure it will come out messy and might be crap but you can edit it later. If you edit it before the idea forms it’s really hard to get any ideas together at all and your output will be minimal
A: Do you consider yourself part of a horror community?
MR: I don’t to be honest, even though I grew up watching a ton of horror and sci-fi from the original “Outer Limits,” “Twilight Zone,” “The Changeling” (1980), “Poltergeist” (1982) to the terrifying “Hellraiser” and then other weird stuff like “The Gate,” “The Stuff” and then Post-Apocalyptic stuff like the original “Planet of the Apes,” “Escape From New York,” “Bronx Warriors,” “Mad Max” and “Cherry 2000.” I mainly try to create moral puzzles as I think the horror of humanity is where the true terror lies. So, short answer, community, no.
A: When you’re building the world of your film, where do you look for inspiration?
MR: Inspiration comes from whatever questions I’m grappling with at the time. Right now it’s around technology, power and corruption. The news is always good for inspiration because I’m always shocked to find someone doing something more horrific to another human than you could ever fathom. I then get obsessed with trying to understand the mindset that could operate like that, the upbringing, how they exist day to day. I love exploring character.
A: What would you do if you woke up inside of your film?
MR: If I was Willie I’d embark on long conversations about the danger of mindless bureaucracy and the hypocrisy [of] punishment and the importance of realizing we have free choice. If I was Morton, I’d quit.
A: Who would be on your ultimate horror villain squad?
MR: Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, Michael Myers, Sadako, Pinhead.
A: Lightning round: Freddy or Jason? Stephen King or H.P. Lovecraft? Practical or CGI? Post Apocalypse or Pre-Apocalypse?
MR: Jason, Stephen King, Practical, Post Apocalypse.
A: And finally, Ghostface would like to know ‘What’s your favourite scary movie?’
MR: The Changeling (1980).