'Blair Witch' Director Launches DTV Project26 Jun, 2007 By: Kyra Kudick
Twisting and reinventing the horror genre is one of the trademarks audiences have come to expect from director Daniel Myrick.
The director of The Blair Witch Project still declares himself to be a “believer” in independent film. The pun was certainly intended as he made the declaration while introducing his latest film, Believers, at last month's Solstice Film Festival in St. Paul, Minn.
The suspense film is the third installation in the “Raw Feed” series from Warner Home Video, and will be released direct to video Oct. 16 (prebook Sept. 18) at $24.98. The unrated DVD will feature plenty of special features, including commentary by Myrick and a featurette on the facility used for filming: an abandoned Nike missile base that Myrick describes as “the creepiest place in the world.”
It is the perfect setting for Believers, a story of two paramedics who are kidnapped by a doomsday cult and forced to question their own beliefs.
“I've always been fascinated by cults and what motivates people to join,” Myrick said. “This film takes you into one of the most important days in these people's lives. The result is an eerie glimpse into a completely different belief system.”
Myrick said he wanted to take preconceptions of what cults are and then turn them on their heads a little bit.
“Brainwashing is really turning your conventions into something else and creating a new belief,” he said. “So one person's cult is another person's religion is another person's football team.”
He said his film is “not intended to have any definitive word on the topic.” Rather, it has the audience asking, “‘Is it real or not? Is it supernatural or not?' The whole movie is kind of walking that line ... I like not having all the answers,” he said.
Believers won the Solstice Film Festival's jury award for best feature film, and Johnny Messner won the best actor award for his role as paramedic David Vaughn.