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Behind the Scenes with "Reporter" Renee Laverde

A look at what it takes to put the "scream" in Scream Queen

        I said I wouldn't do it but I did.  We shot and finished the last scene on August 5, 2001 for what was originally intended to be a promotional trailer.  The scene evolved into something much more elaborate and grotesque than originally intended.  Needless to say, it is now part of the film and what I believe will have fans going wild.  This scene completes the film's opening climax leading up to the introduction of Alice.  The movie's opening is significantly darker than the rest of the movie.  From the first few scenes featuring the bumbling antics of the Detectives we see a darker progression.  The Detective scenes are filled with black humor which is in contrast to Alice's story which is very brooding.  If the earlier scenes leading up to this new one have not established the Black Rose Killer as one mean mother f**ker then this one ought to do it.  It's now wonder poor Alice doesn't get any sleep.  

        Renee Laverde, a friend for a number of years is yet the latest victim to fall before the hand of the Black Rose Killer.  Renee was an amazing trooper.  The scene was shot in about 2 hours - during which she was drenched in "blood", squirmed, squished, fell and rolled in sausage and pig intestine and finally had to have her mouth filled with the "blood" stuff.  Oh, and let's not forget that she was thrown against a wall numerous times, her head was banged against a wall numerous times, and she was choked and dragged through the guts.  We couldn't have done it without the help of a couple of friends who took the role of production assistants for the day - a special thanks to Brian Goldstein and Chris Podhaiski (Rookie Cop).

        We finished just in time.  The meat started to smell due to the heat and humidity.  Bees chased poor Renee as she went to shower.  The "blood" is mainly made up of sugar and red dye.  Clean up was fun as we waved the flies away that starting swarming around the meat that was strewn about the floor. 

        Below is a pictorial that follows the scene from beginning to end.  Hats off to Renee, America's newest Scream Queen!

Anthony Eikner (the Black Rose Killer in this scene) prepares the sausage/"intestine" while Renee Laverde (the Reporter) looks on with dismay.  Right about now she was seriously beginning to regret being there and wondering what she had gotten herself into.  Yes, for only $12.64 you too can go to your local delicatessen and have your very own intestine.  WARNING!  Keep refrigerated for as long as possible.  You really don't want to smell it after it has been sitting out for a while. 

Refrigerated intestine is reeeaaally cold.  Ask Renee.  She'll tell you.  We slit a hole in her shirt just big enough for the intestine to pull through.  The tight hole created the effect of the intestine really pulling out of her stomach.  The garden trowel was not the original weapon that was going to be used for this scene.  We decided to use it because of it's unique hooking and grabbing ability.  The intestine twirled around it nicely like spaghetti on a fork.  Renee relaxes and lets it all hang out as we set up for the next shot.

The Reporter's guts splash down on her feet as the last bit of fight is wrenched out of her by the Black Rose Killer.

Anthony adds more blood to her torso so that we can change angles and show her being gutted.  When the killer pulls his hand away from her she spits up blood.  The "blood" is mostly made of a thick sugary syrup.  It tastes really sweet and nasty.  Your mouth dries out real quick because of its consistency.  In some cases, leaving it in too long will slightly tint your teeth pink.  Renee quickly rinses and spits.  She ended up with a slight pink tint on her teeth anyway which should disappear by the next day.  Her skin was unscathed.

At the last part of the scene, we see Renee on the floor after she has fallen.  The killer hacks away at her yanking out the last of her intestines and leaves her for dead.  It was a bitch cleaning up the floors and walls afterward.  Luckily the basement is planned for renovation otherwise we would not have been able to do this.

Renee rinses off with a garden hose before she goes inside for a shower.  We wanted to hose her down but I guess it was just a little too much to ask for.

Yuck!  I think I'm going to hurl just looking at these pictures again.  Nice touch with the rose sitting on the bucket.  Flies were beginning to swarm at this point.  I was going around like a mad mad trying to record their buzzing sounds.  Anthony suggested that I take the bucket home and leave it out to putrefy.  Uh, no thanks.  I'm crazy but not that crazy.

Well, maybe I am that crazy.  I made a joke about me eating the intestine afterwards.  It became a bet that I couldn't lose face to.  Yes, that's me, Writer/Director Glen Baisley, munching on the intestine.  Five hours later ...  I swear I can still taste it.  It had to be one of the most wretched things I have ever done.  Don't forget that it was soaked in the "blood" and covered with dirt from the floor, not to mention uncooked.  Oh, and don't forget it was swarming with flies.  Well, I guess I'll do just about anything for a good publicity shot. 

We shot two different endings for the scene.  One which will be used for the movie and one that will be used as part of the promotional trailer.  If you look behind me in the above picture you'll notice the words "Available Now" are scrawled across the wall in blood.  The killer writes them with a piece of intestine.  We also took a snap shot of the words "Alice, Sleep No More" that regrettably won't appear in the movie.  In retrospect, I could have shot it in such a way that I could have used it in Alice's parent's bedroom.  Oh well, I guess it will remain on the cutting room floor.  Ha ha.  Pardon the expression. 


So there you have it - The Anatomy of a Horror Scene.  We started at 10 AM and finished at 2 PM.  We shot about 2 hours of video and finished up the last gallon of "blood" that I bought over a year ago and first used one year ago today (August 5, 2000 to August 5, 2001).  This was the only scene to be shot with 2 cameras simultaneously.  It has been a long and crazy trip.  I still have a good amount of post production work to do.  But, in the end I'm sure it will be a rip roaring, splatter filled fest on the big screen or any screen for that matter. 


Now check out the music video to see part of the scene in action!


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