Revenge is Only the Beginning: A Q&A with Astron-6’s Adam Brooks

Based out of Winnipeg, Astron-6 is a five-man filmmaking collective that is about to enter the Canadian genre film fray with their debut feature, FATHER’S DAY. Unlike any Canadian film before it, this Troma-produced horror/exploitation/revenge epic is about a serial rapist named Chris Fuchman who sodomizes middle-aged dads in front of their children (yes, really!). It may be a wild premise, but it’s not too surprising if you’re already familiar with Astron-6’s boundary-shattering, self-funded shorts and fake trailers. Their past work, which includes Lazer Ghosts 2, Cool Guys and Goreblade, reveals a deep affinity for low-budget trash of the VHS era along with a willingness to skewer any remaining cinematic taboos.

Founded in 2007 by Adam Brooks and Jeremy Gillespie, Astron-6 also includes filmmakers Matt Kennedy, Conor Sweeney and Steven Kostanski, who all take turns writing, acting and directing the group’s work. FATHER’S DAY, largely directed by Brooks, originated as a fake trailer shot in 2010, but has now been expanded to become the group’s first feature film. FATHER’S DAY makes its premiere on October 21, 2011 at the Toronto After Dark Festival in a co-presentation with RUE MORGUE magazine. In this brief interview, Adam discusses the genesis of FATHER’S DAY and offers his frank assessment of the state of indie genre filmmaking in Canada.

Canuxploitation: Tell us a little about the history of Astron-6 as a group.

Adam: This is the boring question that starts every interview we do. We all made short films on our own, and every year entered them in the Winnipeg Short Film Massacre. We were competitors who decided to join forces.

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A Q&A with Lost Dominion Screening Collective’s Paul Gordon

Based out of Ottawa, the Lost Dominion Screening Collective is a group of film professionals, enthusiasts and students that are dedicated to bringing forgotten,  rarely-shown Canadian classics back to the big screen. A lofty goal for any programmer, but the recently formed collective, or LDSC for short, makes a special effort to delve deeply into tax shelter era for their popular screenings at Ottawa’s Bytowne and Mayfair theatres.

On September 17, 2011, the LDSC is set to launch the second season of their largest film series, the Canadian Cult Revue, the only long running program of its kind in Canada. Tickets are already on sale for this unique screening series that features double and triple-bills of an exciting lineup of classic Canadian B-movie fare, including DEADLY EYES, RABID, PAPERBACK HERO and THE PEANUT BUTTER SOLUTION, as well as a few “lost” gems recently uncovered in the film collection of Library and Archives Canada. One of the collective’s founders, Paul Gordon, talked to Canuxploitation.com about the LDSC’s upcoming Canadian Cult Revue series and offered some of his thoughts on the state of Canadian genre filmmaking today.

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The New Canadian Cult Vanguard? A Q&A with VAN GORE’s Keith Hodder

Grindhouse has gone mainstream and Canadian directors are reaping the blood-soaked rewards. First Jason Eisener caused a viral stir with HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN, his winning entry from a contest sponsored by Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez’s 2007 genre two-fer GRINDHOUSE. Now, with the release of a feature based on that trailer, Eisener has paid his good fortune forward to fledgling filmmakers Keith Hodder, Peter Strauss and Jerrad Pulham, who won  HOBO’s own trailer contest with their plasma-drenched entry VAN GORE, an authentic-looking  horror throwback to classic “killer artist” films of the 1960s like BLOOD BATH, H.G. Lewis’ COLOR ME BLOOD RED and even a homegrown effort, the Montreal-shot PLAYGIRL KILLER.

With their trailer landing a featured spot on the HOBO WITH A SHOGUN DVD and Blu-ray  discs released this week, the trio is hoping, like Eisener, to turn their two-minute success into a 90-minute blast of exploitation fun. Co-director and co-writer Keith Hodder explained their approach and the latest direction in Canadian cult film to in this one-on-one interview with Canuxploitation.com.

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