What do these things have in common: Biola University, the Chicago Film Critics Association’s Top 100 Scariest Films ever made, GK Chesterton, Ethan Hawke, lawn work, and Walker Percy? Well, maybe there’s a lot there for anyone who wants to try, but for our purposes I’m talking about screenwriter and director Scott Derrickson.
His most recent release is Sinister, a movie that he warned me not to see when I told him I don’t handle horror very well. But I’d seen and loved his first movie, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, without further psychological incident. Also, after meeting him I liked him so much I had to see what he made, and as it turns out – I enjoy being scared silly!
Horror fans have loved the movie, and The Los Angeles Times said:
“Sinister” uses the supernatural to underline its examination of the all-too-human foibles of insecurity and myopic self-centeredness. As the best horror stories so often do, “Sinister” makes clear that we are our own boogeymen, the worst monsters of all.
Scott generously took time away from his busy schedule to talk with me about the collaborative process of filmmaking, why artists need to think about money, how he rests, and what has mentored him. Also John Wayne.
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Show notes, show notes, scary scary show notes!
Take a film seminar with Scott Derrickson next summer (there’s a good full bio here as well)
A couple of the books that have mattered the most in Scott’s life: