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Exclusive trailer, filmmaker comments: paranoia chiller “HAVEN’S END”

Friday, August 31, 2018 | Exclusive, News

By MICHAEL GINGOLD

There’s nowhere to hide when the enemies may be amongst you in the new survival-horror feature HAVEN’S END. We’ve got the exclusive first look at the trailer, plus comments from the creators.

HAVEN’S END, which is poised to invade the festival circuit later this year, was directed by Chris Ethridge from a script by Michael H. Harper; the duo also produced with Stacey Palmer. The synopsis: “Major cities across the globe are under attack. A surgeon and her friends flee Atlanta to her family property in the countryside of south Georgia. They arrive to discover her estranged brother and his girlfriend already holed up on the land. As they try to figure out how to work together to survive, strange lights and unusual activity in the surrounding forest lead them to believe they are not alone.”

“I’m a big fan of movies that bend the rules where the story is concerned—you think it’s one thing, and it becomes another,” Ethridge, who previously collaborated with Harper and Palmer and ATTACK OF THE MORNINGSIDE MONSTER, tells RUE MORGUE. “FROM DUSK TILL DAWN is a key touchstone for that sort of film. We also wanted to play in John Carpenter’s playground, particular when introducing the element of trust. To me, as an audience member, it’s always fun when you are guessing about the motives of characters during the film: Who is the villain, or villains? We had a lot of fun plotting out exactly when and where the dominoes fall in that regard. I had a strong interest in playing with themes of trust and control, while also mashing up genres in a way that made the movie fun and interesting, both for myself as a filmmaker and the audience.”

“It was really important to me that the script not fall squarely into any one genre,” Harper says. “I didn’t want to write a slasher flick, or a zombie movie, or a sci-fi apocalypse, or a cut-and-dried actioner. I wanted to write all of those, so I did.”

Where the casting was concerned, Ethridge says, “I got to work with my friend Catherine Taber for the second time, and it was incredible to watch her work her magic in a larger role this time around. We also cast the extremely talented Megan Hayes and one of my favorite indie horror actresses, Hannah Fierman [V/H/S, SiREN]. They are both such powerful performers, and I had a blast working with each of them. We rounded out the cast with Alex Zuko, Anthony Nguyen, and another actor who I work with regularly, Robert Pralgo. They all brought their A game to a shooting schedule that barely had enough time to shoot a decent short, much less a feature.”

“Chris, Stacey and I have worked together so much, it wasn’t as hard as it should have been,” Harper adds. “Obviously, we’re a little insane. But that insanity works for us.”

HAVEN’S END has already had a couple of successful test screenings, and the filmmakers are aiming for a premiere in the next couple of months. “I’m stoked for the world to finally get to see this movie,” Harper says. “It’s my favorite screenplay I’ve ever written, the cast is superb and Chris, Stacey and the rest of the crew really went to the mat to get it done. I’m very proud of this film.”

Michael Gingold
Michael Gingold (RUE MORGUE's Head Writer) has been covering the world of horror cinema for over three decades, and spent 28 years as a writer and editor for FANGORIA magazine and its website. In addition to RUE MORGUE, he currently writes for BIRTH.MOVIES.DEATH, SCREAM, IndieWire.com, TIME OUT, DELIRIUM and others. His book THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO MONSTER MOVIES (FAB Press) is out this fall, and he has contributed liner notes and featurettes to a number of Blu-ray and DVD releases. Among his screenplay credits are SHADOW: DEAD RIOT and LEECHES!, and he is currently working on THE DOLL with director Dante Tomaselli.