Friday, March 29, 2013

Interview With Shane M. Dallmann Of Deep Red

Crankenstein here doing my best Morley Safer impression again! here's an interview with Shane M. Dallmann, a man of many talents; he's a horror host, puppeteer and former writer for Deep Red. I am a huge fan of his "Hand It To Remo Column", So let's get going already with this interview!

1.You've mentioned that you are The Paul Naschy-file in the Deep Red crew, what are your top 5 favorites?
Way too many to whittle down, so many "classic" monster movies that bored Chas. silly with their lack of extreme gore appeal to me greatly (ASSIGNMENT TERROR for crazy fun, CURSE OF THE DEVIL for filmmaking excellence, etc.). The five juiciest DEEP RED Naschy titles? HORROR RISES FROM THE TOMB, THE HUNCHBACK OF THE MORGUE, PANIC BEATS, HOWL OF THE DEVIL, and that amazing valediction known as ROJO SANGRE, in chronological order.

2. How did you meet Chas Balun?
It was the late 1980s, and it was my first Fangoria L.A. convention. I was aware of Chas.'s writings (including DEEP RED, of which I had at least a couple of issues) but was looking at the books on his display table before I actually looked up at the fellow who was still unpacking something or other... he offered me a friendly greeting as I browsed some Argento merchandise or other, and it just clicked. I said "Now wait a minute... you're the man himself, aren't you?" He replied "No, I'm not Dario Argento... but I'm Chas!" The conversation just flowed after that--he was the first genre writer I'd actually met in person and there was so much I wanted to talk about... a couple of years later, I was at another convention bearing the manuscript of the Paul Naschy article that I'd just sent in to Fango, and Chas. asked "Is that something you'd maybe like to see published in DEEP RED?" As I hadn't yet heard back from Fango, I was in sufficient awe to nearly cancel the plans and give the article straight to Chas., but my sense of protocol won out in the end. It turned out to be a double victory: Fango accepted my piece and ran it as my first published work, but I also became a DEEP RED regular from then on, eventually contributing reviews, overviews, interviews (Guillermo del Toro!) and even a humor column ("Hand it to Remo" followed my obsession with cinematic hand-removal scenes and is, to this day, the first thing some of my readers bring up when they contact me on-line)!
3.What other rare films besides The Severed Arm did you introduce to the catalog?
Not too many--I was far more a rapacious collector than contributor, but I thought the uncut version of THE SEVERED ARM was sufficiently rare. I was also very pleased to introduce Chas. to a Fulci film he'd never even heard of before, that being THE NEW GLADIATORS (somewhere between the death of Media Home Entertainment and the film's eventual acquisition by Troma).
4.What are some underrated directors that should be included on the blog for future reviews?
Such a loaded question--I'll try to answer and then realize that it's already been covered or that I left someone out entirely. First and best answer right now: Scott Derrickson. He started with HELLRAISER: INFERNO (about as good as an essentially unrelated DTV series entry can be) and recently impressed the hell out of me with SINISTER.
5.What are some of the worst films you had to review for Deep Red?
Ah. I chose my own review material, so I never had to suffer unduly. If I wanted to review ATTACK OF THE BEAST CREATURES as a "dog," it was still great for laughs. I got to blow the lid off of GREAT WHITE/THE LAST SHARK and THE NEW GLADIATORS simultaneously, I sparked "rabid" interest in the uncut version of RABID GRANNIES, but nothing was ever assigned to me as such. Chas. gave me (and others) free reign and free range, and the best way to pay him back was to always bring my full enthusiasm to what I covered for him.

6. I feel that Dario Argento has seriously taken a dive with his recent films, what other horror film makers should retire?
NOBODY should retire unless THEY think they should. Argento's been slumming, all right. Wes Craven has also done some unwatchable stuff in recent years, but he can still pull a nice surprise like RED EYE out of his hat. I couldn't stand John Carpenter's GHOSTS OF MARS, but THE WARD was more than serviceable. I review on a film by film basis, and I will never declare anyone to be at the end of the road because you just... never... know.
7. What films of recent years should get the Deep Red seal of approval?
Well, nobody needs me to introduce the SAW or HOSTEL movies, of course. I could talk to you for hours about recent films alone (such as the aforementioned SINISTER). Instead, I'm going to steer you to Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Welton's knowledgeable gorefests THE COLLECTOR and THE COLLECTION, which offer genuine suspense and surprises to go with the (now to be expected) torture traps... the sequel, in particular, grabbed my attention by immersing itself in Euro-horror visuals not limited to the "Argento Hotel" setting and seemed tailor-made to please me.
As always, the list goes on...

Thanks for the interview and Sorry we made you eat all those cigars!

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