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:Dark Delights: Charles Pinion

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Dark Delights with Ladyaslan Presents:
Charles Pinion – Director

Ladyaslan: Welcome, Mr. Pinion. Thanks for joining me here on Dark Delights. What should my readers, aka “#Baby bats,” know about you?

Charles Pinion: I’m an Air Force brat who moved every three or four years throughout my childhood and well into my adult life, living in Texas, California, and Japan. I’d call Gainesville, Florida my “real” home in the sense that my grandfather was a professor at the university there and I visited a lot over the years. I lived in Gainesville for a few years during the ’80s where I was a prolific musician, artist, and (ultimately) filmmaker.

Ladyaslan: Let’s start with the obvious, your work as a visual artist and director who made the punk rock skateboard zombie movie Twisted Issues (1988). How did that go from paper to film?

Charles Pinion: It really started with me shooting video of Gainesville bands. Gainesville had a great scene but few managed to document it. I wanted to place this footage in a narrative, and I enlisted those interested in making it happen into helping me write Twisted Issues. The first gag, really, was the idea of the undead skateboarder whose skateboard has lost its trucks and he drills his foot to the board and clomps around. That was the first gag, offered by Andrew Entner, a local skater. We started accumulating gags, but still no story. Eventually I got local writers Steve Antzcak and Jim “Hawk” Bassett to collaborate with me on an honest-to-goodness script, and from that I extensively story-boarded the movie and then we shot it. 

Ladyaslan: What can you tell us about the genesis of the post-Cinema of Transgression witches in the snow movie Red Spirit Lake (1993)?

Charles Pinion: That came out of a camping trip where I was outside making the campfire and Ellen Smithy was napping in our tent when she heard a voice tell her to put the rain cover on, because it was going to rain. So she got up and put the rain cover on, and sure enough, as she went back to sleep she heard the rain pitter-pattering on the rain cover. When I made it back to the tent she said, “Thanks for telling me to put the rain cover on” and I said, “I didn’t tell you that” and that’s the seed moment that inspired the movie. (In the movie it’s when the wood spirit played by Kembra Pfahler says to the sleeping protagonist who’s shivering in a cold sauna, “Don’t freeze to death, Marilyn.”) Basically it’s the idea of sympathetic nature spirits who are looking out for you.

Ladyaslan: To celebrate the release of the new horror hit American Mummy on DVD and Blu-ray from Wild Eye Releasing, first, what is the synopsis of this movie? How did you celebrate going to DVD?

Charles Pinion: We still need to celebrate! Synopsis: American Mummy is about an Aztec God, Tezcatlipoca, who is found buried in a cave in New Mexico by archeology students. The sleeping god is awakened by blood, and it is with blood that he works to achieve his destiny. It’s Part 1 of a trilogy. Regarding gore (American Mummy is definitely a gore movie), I’m more a fan of ridiculous gore-splat than the grim rusty abattoir of torture porn.

Ladyaslan: What can you tell us about the Lord of the Smoking Mirror?

Charles Pinion: When I first read about Tezcatlipoca, Lord of the Smoking Mirror, I likened him to a kind of Lucifer or Satan in the Aztec Pantheon, with Quetzalcoatl the Feathered Serpent as the salvific Christ figure. Then someone pointed out to me that the Aztec pantheon isn’t dualistic the way Christianity is. There is no God or Satan per se. All the Aztec gods wanted blood.

Ladyaslan: What are the three words that best describe you?

Charles Pinion: My girlish figure. No, wait. Honest, forthright, true. Ah, damn. Trying real hard?

Ladyaslan: If you could ask me one question, ANYTHING, what would it be?

Charles Pinion: What do you like best about Dark Delights?

Ladyaslan: Hmmmmmmmmm…what do I like best? Well I created it—the name and brand [giggles]. It allows me to cover many genres and interview many different types of artists to filmmakers to models.

I love music, and I’m always interested in the musical tastes of my friends.  Tell me your five favorite songs at the moment.

Charles Pinion:Screen Shot” by Swans, “Traveling Light” by Leonard Cohen, “My Autumn’s Done Come” by Lee Hazlewood, “Recent Bedroom” by Atlas Sound, and “Litany” by Arvo Pärt.

Ladyaslan: What was the last concert you attended?  Did you enjoy it?

Charles Pinion: Pere Ubu. I enjoyed it because I was with a couple of friends who were into it. I somehow missed Pere Ubu when they were in ascendance, so hearing songs I didn’t know didn’t really grab me. I think this is not an unusual phenomenon with band revival tours.

Ladyaslan: Oddly that name reminds me of Ubu Roi—play by French writer Alfred Jarry.

Have you ever had any paranormal experiences?  If so, what were they?

Charles Pinion: Unfortunately, no. I did have a near miss one night in the English countryside (Stoke-on-Trent) in 1980, when I woke from sleep in a trailer (“caravan” in Brit-speak) to see colored lights against the wall, meaning that the light was coming from the big, dark, empty cow pasture outside the window. I didn’t have my glasses on. It was just fuzzy colored lights on the wall. I went back to sleep. The next day there was talk all around town about the UFO that had landed in the cow pasture.

Ladyaslan: Last but NOT least, where can my readers/#Babybats get more information on you and your books?

Charles Pinion: Please check out my early shot-on-video features, which I call The Pulp Video Collection: Twisted Issues, Red Spirit Lake, and We Await.

http://www.charlespinion.com/MOVIES.html

If you like American Mummy, please give it some love (and 5-star ratings) at Amazon, etc.

**About Ladyaslan: She is a published Gothic poet and horror erotica novelist. Ladyaslan’s second book is available on Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, and other established book retailers internationally. Check out Lipstick & Absinthe and her other books at the link below:
Official Website: http://www.lipstickandabsinthe.com/

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