THE ABCs OF DEATH Exclusive Interview with Banjong Pisanthanakun
There are many ways to learn your ABCs, none of which sound as horrifyingly entertaining (or traumatizing) as being hacked to pieces by a chainsaw, getting eaten by a monster toilet or having a demon from hell possess your home. At least, that’s the premise behind Drafthouse Films and Magnet Pictures latest film THE ABCs OF DEATH. Dubbed the “most ambitious anthology film ever” the cinematic anthology joins 26 of the horror genre’s most talented directors from all over the world to share their own deadly short films, each of which are based on a letter of the alphabet.
In preparation of the film’s VOD release today, 26 different sites were each given the opportunity to speak with one of THE ABCs OF DEATH filmmakers and Strange Kids Club was among those selected! Our interview with director Banjong Pisanthanakun (N for Nuptials, Shutter, Alone) follows below and to check out all 26 interviews, be sure to stop by The ABCs of Death Tumblr.
Tell us, how did you become involved in the ABCs of Death project?
Actually Todd [Brown], is the one who invited me to join the project through Facebook inbox!
Was ‘N’ your letter of choice or were you hoping for a different one?
I chose a few letters. At first I chose “Z” because I wanted to do the story about the zoo… too bad I didn’t get to do it.
Seriously – zoos have so much potential for something scary! How collaborative was your experience on this project, were you able to meet the other directors prior to submitting your piece?
Unfortunately no, I didn’t get to meet any other directors.
Your early short films (Plae Kao, Colourblind) seemed to explore the nature of relationships. Was N for Nuptials a way for you to continue exploring that concept in a different genre or was it simply good fun?
Just wanted to do a wicked and fun story.
There’s an old saying in showbiz that you never work with children or animals. Did you experience any issues on set with the bird?
[laughs] It went very smoothly, no hassles.
Were there any other issues or limitations you encountered while filming?
The only limitation was the budget. It was quite small.
Your next project, Pee Mak Phrakanong, is a horror/comedy as well. Is there anything you can reveal to us about it at this time?
It’s a period film that has a mix of comedy and horror with action scenes. There are quite a lot of complicated shots [and it] has many emotions combined, but the main one is definitely humor.
Will you be teaming up with your former Co-Director, Parkpoom Wongpoom, again or will this be a solo effort?
This is my solo work.
Given that your past two feature films have been strictly horror, have you found it difficult to maintain a balance between horror and humor?
I have already done comedy/horror in my past works for 4BIA and PHOBIA 2 so I am comfortable and very much enjoy this kind of work.
What do you find most intriguing about the horror genre from a creative perspective?
The challenge in making a horror is how to come up with a new idea that is fresh to the genre, yet it still works and it’s still possible to control the audiences’ feelings. There are a lot of horror films in the market, so coming up with new ideas is the biggest challenge for me.
Thank you so much for your time Pisanthanakun!
THE ABCs OF DEATH is now available on Cable VOD, iTunes, Amazon, Xbox Zune, Playstation Market, VUDU and Google Play; in theaters starting March 8th from Magnet Releasing.
About THE ABC’s OF DEATH:
Twenty-six directors. Twenty-six ways to die. The ABC’s OF DEATH is perhaps the most ambitious anthology film ever conceived with productions spanning fifteen countries and featuring segments directed by over two dozen of the world’s leading talents in contemporary genre film. Inspired by children’s educational books, the motion picture is comprised of twenty-six individual chapters, each helmed by a different director assigned a letter of the alphabet. The directors were then given free reign in choosing a word to create a story involving death.