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An Interview with David Quitmeyer Print E-mail
Written by Elaine Lamkin   
Friday, 16 September 2005

Like many first-time horror directors, “Slaughter Disc” director David Quitmeyer works a “normal” job during the day and goes about his passion for film on his off time.  However, David Quitmeyer isn’t your ordinary horror film director.  He has merged two “looked-down-upon” movie genres: horror and porn, to create a film that combines some of the best elements of both.  “Slaughter Disc” is the cautionary tale of what an obsession for porn can lead one into and in the case of Mike, the film’s protagonist it’s into the dangerous yet erotic world of the alluring Andromeda Strange.  Murder, cannibalism, necrophilia – just some of the “delights” Andromeda has waiting to tempt poor Mike with.  And all of this from the mind of a Business major who works in the ER/trauma center of a regional medical center.  I don’t know what is scarier.

Well, seeing as there is next to no info about you on the IMdb, how about giving us a brief review of The David Quitmeyer Story?  Your background, education, whatever information you care to share?

I've been a fan of the horror genre ever since I can remember.  I've just always liked monsters and scenes of blood spraying all over the place.  I was the kid in class whose parents were called in because I had drawn a picture of somebody getting their head cut off with graphic detail – we're talking arteries, trachea, spinal fluid, etc.

When I was in Jr. High the creative writing bug bit me and after a while I decided I wanted to be a filmmaker so I could make movies based on my stories. I published a few works and made a few films throughout high school and college but nothing ever really took off.

I have an Associate's Degree in Applied Science and a Bachelor's Degree in Business Management.  As creative as I have always been, my family strong-armed me to get degrees that I could "fall back on".  I hated them at the time, but now I'm able to pay my bills while some of my friends are collecting soda cans for gas money.

How did you get involved in the film industry, particularly the adult film industry?  And I have read you consider yourself only a “part-time” pornographer – what do you do “full-time”?

How did I get my start? Well, once upon a time ago I was an Internet Developer and I set up a ton of corporate and adult websites.  I started setting up live video chats at a few places that made porn films and one day they asked me to help out on a shoot.  It wasn't long after that they handed me the camera because I was doing a great job at it.

While I was working for one of these sites I met my friend Chris Spoto.  We worked together briefly and then our paths crossed again about a year later.  We were both sick and tired of slaving away for people and watching them rake in the money. We were also very sick and tired of all the mindless porn out there.  We stuck our heads together and created our first adult feature, “Clown Porn” (The Movie).  That movie really grabbed a lot of people's attention in the adult industry. We've also received a ton of press and media exposure for the film. We've been on “The Howard Stern Show”, numerous other radio shows and a number of mainstream magazines such as “Rolling Stone”, “Maxim” and “FHM”.

Chris and I have always wanted to do more than just make porn films; we've wanted to be creative filmmakers. While Chris and I have a ton of similarities, we also have some creative differences, mainly being that I am a horror fanatic.

Right now I earn my living as a Respiratory Care Practitioner.  I work 2-3 days a week at the hospital and the rest of the time I work on film projects.

“Slaughter Disc” started out as a short story, “The Tape”, that you wrote 15 years ago.  When you first wrote it, did it have the same “cautionary” theme as the film, about the dangers of addiction, whether to pornography, drugs, alcohol, etc.?

Yes it did.  I really didn't change the original story too much when I wrote the screenplay.  I just had to shuffle a few things around and cut out a ton of the gore. All I really did was modernize the story by adding cell phones, the Internet and DVD technology.  Those things didn't exist when I originally wrote the story.

Where did you find Caroline Pierce, the adult film actress who plays Andromeda Strange?  In the “Behind-the-Scenes” extra on the DVD, she seems to be having a lot of fun doing what is probably her first more “mainstream” film?  Will we be seeing more of Andromeda in future films?

Caroline responded to a casting call I had online for “Slaughter Disc”. After reading the script she told me it was as if I had written the story for her. Caroline has done some extra work on mainstream movies, art films and TV shows, but I think “Slaughter Disc” marks her first starring role in either industry.

If everything works out according to my plans, Andromeda will actually be the hostess for all of the future Carnal Morgue films.  If there's enough interest and money, I'll do a sequel to “Slaughter Disc” that explores the origin and motives of Andromeda Strange.

How did you go about casting the role of Mike and how did you finally decide on Robert Williams, especially as this is his first feature film?

All of the male actors had to audition for the role by either reading lines from the script or reciting a monologue.  Casting Mike was a hard choice because there were two other actors who were really good too. I couldn't make up my mind so I started showing the casting video to a number of friends and said, "Who the hell should I pick?"  The consensus was to use Robert because he was more believable on camera. 

With a budget of only $9,000 you became “Everyman” on the set, not only writing and directing but casting, editing, cinematographer, wardrobe consultant, publicist, SFX artist and playing Mike’s boss in a cameo.  Wasn’t all that exhausting or did your extended shooting schedule make all of that a bit easier?

Extended? Ha!  We filmed most of the movie in four days!  Seriously, every scene involving Andromeda or Carrie was shot in that four-day period.  I then had to edit most of that footage to create the scenes that played on the television during the scenes with Mike. 

While it was a bit of a burden at the time, I believe it actually worked out better for the film.  I didn't have to try and get my point across to a large crew. I had a makeup person and a PA on hand for some of the more complicated scenes, but other than that I would just grab the camera and shoot. Oh yeah, I was also the stunt cock for the masturbation scene where Mike became a little too close and personal with the television.

When I watched the movie, I thought it was a very adult and twisted version of “The Ring”.  Did that film have any influence on “Slaughter Disc”?  Definitely helped the “creepy” factor for me.

I've talked about this in a number of other interviews – and I've had some pretty heated exchanges over the subject – but basically I wrote the story “Slaughter Disc” is based on without ever having any prior knowledge of “The Ring”/”Ringu”.  When I saw “The Ring” in the theaters I was very upset because there were some very strong similarities between the two.  However, I think if you place the stories side by side, they have very little in common.

I had some male friends of mine ask about the blood Andromeda masturbates with (as though I’m an authority on such a subject!) and I guessed, and apparently correctly, that it was red-colored KY jelly or some brand of personal lubricant.  What was used for the “brains” Andromeda eats?  I remember jam or jelly in the “Behind-the-Scenes” extra but there had to be more to get that VERY realistic (and quease-inducing, for me, effect).

We had to use water-soluble lubricant for the vaginal blood because using anything with high sugar content, such as corn syrup, could have caused an instant massive yeast infection in our actress.

For the brains, we used a mixture of grape jelly, strawberry jelly and bananas.  One of the effects people I consulted with gave me the recipe.

You list a number of problems you had both during and after the production of “Slaughter Disc”.  Now that the DVD is out, are you getting any backlash from the mainstream horror fan who might not have known what they were getting themselves into?

Most of the feedback I get is from people who love the film, despite its few setbacks.  Yes, I know the sound sucks in places but there's nothing you can do when your sound person quits on the day of the shoot and you have no budget.  You just have to press forward and pray for the best.  For a guy with no formal film school training I get a lot of amazed looks from other filmmakers after they're watched the movie.

The film is pretty gory and I read that you once worked in the ER of a regional trauma center.  Any secrets to getting that realistic blood that SO many low-budget films just cannot seem to manage?

I still work in the ER, so I'm reminded of how real blood looks every day. There are two common misconceptions most filmmakers have about blood: One, it's bright red and Two, it sprays out from wounds in huge plumes. Real blood is dark and it oozes more than it "sprays".  There are some occasions in real life where you could get bright red plumes of blood if you rapidly severed an arm, but it wouldn't last for long as the body would run out of fluid volume.  For “Slaughter Disc” we used a mix of over-the-counter stage bloods to create our effects. We also used medical syringes and IV tubing to pump the blood for the effect.

How well did the adult film actors handle doing a more “mainstream” film like “Slaughter Disc”?  And who in the cast besides Caroline is in the adult industry?

Everybody had a great time filming the movie.  It was something original and unique, which doesn't happen too often in either the mainstream or adult industries.  It might surprise you, but there are a number of actors out there who do both mainstream and adult work under different stage names.

Travis Lee, who plays John, was the only other adult industry professional that we had in the movie.

Is The Carnal Morgue your invention and what can viewers expect next from the Morgue?

DQ:  Yes, The Carnal Morgue is indeed my invention.  It's my homage to the monster shows I grew up with such “Tales from the Crypt” and “The Twilight Zone”, but with more of an adult twist.  It's my goal to create an anthology of horror stories that have very strong sexual overtones. 

I don't want to disappoint anybody, but not everything The Carnal Morgue produces is going to be as hardcore as “Slaughter Disc”, but then again some it will be much harder.  It all depends on the plot of the story and the characters involved.

Our next project is a short film I'm calling “Mail Order Bride”, which is basically about a customizable sex doll made from spare body parts.

Were there ever any “embarrassing” moments for your cast or crew who may not have had any experience with adult films before “Slaughter Disc”?

It's funny you mention that.  Actually my two makeup artists, Catherine and Ashley, had never been around an adult shoot before. They were both extremely interested in learning and that's part of what drew them into the project.  At first it was a little weird for them – and I think it was more dealing with the naked guys than anything else.  It's one thing to see a stranger naked and to see him jerking-off between takes to keep his wood. On the other hand it was really uncomfortable for me to film the scenes of Mike masturbating.  Often I would just turn on the camera and look away because if I looked at him I would just bust up laughing.  I put a few of those scenes in the outtakes, but there are plenty more where that came from.

What sort of fan reaction have you received so far?  I see that you and the cast will be appearing at NecroComicon September 30 through October 2 in Woodland Hills at the Spooky House Haunted Theme Park.  What can fans expect at that appearance?

Most of our fans love the movie and they can't wait for the next thing we do.  Both men and women seem to really like the character of Andromeda Strange and the eerie/sexy vibe she commands then she is on the screen.

NecroComicon will be a fun time for anybody who attends and they are arranging a special screening of “Slaughter Disc”. Caroline and I will be there to meet fans and sign autographs.  We'll have DVDs of “Slaughter Disc” there as well as some other cool merchandise.  I'm hoping on having the “Slaughter Disc” soundtrack available by then as well, but right now I can't make any promises.  We may have some of the other cast and crew drop by our table just to mix things up a little.

What are some of your favorite horror movies?

Wow.  I love most all of them.  My top five would have to be “Hellraiser”, “House of 1000 Corpses”, “The Blair Witch Project”, “Alien” and “Re-Animator”.

Do you read many horror writers and if so, who are among your favorites?

Stephen King and Clive Barker have been my bread and water for many years.  I also enjoy the Hot Blood anthology of erotic horror.

 

Is there anything I haven’t asked you that you would like to add, about anything?

Seven inches.

What is one thing people don’t know about David Quitmeyer but you think they should?

I don't play by the rules and I never will.

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3.22 Copyright (C) 2007 Alain Georgette / Copyright (C) 2006 Frantisek Hliva. All rights reserved."

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