Afterward, I learned he was actually a fan of my band, but didn’t recognize me. No hard feelings. I missed the ’80s hardcore scene in D.C. because I was just skateboarding around the Virginia suburbs but caught some great shows in the mid/late ’90s. Cro-Mags, Gut Instinct (reunion), but I was most honored to see the Bad Brains play with their original line-up (reunion show).
What’s the worst conversation you’ve ever had with someone about your movies? —Jake Kwiatkowski
It was with the financiers of Green Room, regarding script notes we didn’t agree on. Also, when people think they’re being ‘refreshingly honest’ and come up to you and share at length why they didn’t like your film. That’s awkward as hell.
Just wondering, have you tried those Swedish fish Oreos yet? They’re friggin’ gnarly, dude. —SidneyLumetSuxx
Hey! I have not. I’m more into pastries and Chubby Hubby, not so much the sweet gelatinous candy.
What is your favorite horror film? What is your favorite metal album? What are your thoughts on (cishet) male privilege? I’m serious about the male privilege question, though! —alien brain
Favorite horror: The Thing (1982).
Man, can’t name just one album without further contemplation, but it’d be from Sabbath (Ozzy years) or Slayer (prior to Divine Intervention).
Male/white privilege is a real thing. Talking about it can bring about division and backlash, but my brief thoughts are the following: white men admitting they have an unfair advantage does not negate all the energy and sacrifice they put into building a career or creating opportunities. Breaking through professional or economic barriers is always difficult, so some white men think they’re being unfairly attacked by the very concept of ‘privilege’ because they’re struggling to pay the mortgage or keep themselves or their families afloat.
But acknowledging that women or people of color have an even harder time is important. And it doesn’t take anything away from white males. It doesn’t negate their hard work, or make them love their Mommy or Daddy any less. Or belittle the entrepreneurial spirit of their great grandparents that emigrated from Europe and built something from nothing.
I’m a white male and I’m not going to stop pursuing filmmaking or earning an income for my family because I have benefitted from an unfair advantage. But I sure as shit will acknowledge not only my privilege, but the clear disadvantage women and people of color have in my industry (and the world at large, of course). There’s no ‘case’ to be made. Institutional racism and sexism are demonstrable things. It can be proven with wage gaps, statistics on incarceration and a general understanding of recent history.
I could go on, but I’ll just say that yes, it’s a thing, and the first step is to acknowledge it. As a father of three daughters and the husband of a person of color, I plan on doing my part to help level the playing field going forward. Wait, I thought this was a Q&A for horror nerds!
Predictions for the American League in this year’s playoffs? —Steve K
No sports for me. Was into UFC until the PPVs exceeded the $40 range.
Do you remember being given a short script by a nervous young fellow at the Green Room premier at Regal Union Square? That was me. Did you read it? (I fully expected you not to have, I’m just curious.) —Alex Berg
Alex! So sorry. I had your script in my office for a while but I lost track of where it went. I’m currently scrambling, trying to put my next project together and reading scripts that will decide my near-term fate and financial future. I apologize for dropping the ball. Please forgive me.