Chris Nash’s film In a Violent Nature will debut at one of the industry’s most prestigious and respected events, marking the latest milestone in his career.
Back in 2006, local director Chris Nash was named co-winner of the Jackson Triggs Award for Best Canadian Filmmaker at the Canadian Film Center’s Worldwide Short Film Festival in Toronto.
Seventeen years later, Nash has not only fulfilled his early career award promise, but exceeded it with his latest work. in the fierce natureIt has been decided that he will make his debut. sundance film festival In January 2024.
Nash’s last work was in 2014’s horror-comedy anthology. ABCs of death 2.
The filmmaker directed the final part of the anthology. Z is for Zygote.
This series and Nash’s short stories attracted the attention of many viewers.
“Since then, I’ve shot some music videos with my producing partner Shannon Hammer for her brother’s band. birthday massacre” says Nash.
“However, most of my time is spent developing television projects, which I cannot talk about in detail yet.”
By 2018, Nash had created a modern filmmaking concept.
“I’ve had this idea for a while, but I didn’t really think about it until I casually mentioned it to a friend. steve kostanski, Andrew Appel, Shannon Hammerand Peter Kuprowsky When we were working together on Steve’s movie, psycho gorman” says Nash.
“They were intrigued by the idea and we all agreed it was worth pursuing. After writing the script and doing some research, we found funding in 2021 and started shooting a few months later. It has started.”
Those friends formed the core of the film’s production team.
Nash wrote and directed the film, as well as working with Steve Kostanski, who led the prosthetic makeup effects.
Hammer and Kuprowski assumed the role of producers on the film.
Andrew Appel was the film’s original cinematographer, but had to leave once filming began on Sault because he had directed the popular Weiss documentary series. dark side of the ring.
After Appel left the production, Pierce Dirks was hired as cinematographer and cinematographer.
Finally, Alex Jacobs joins the team as an editor.
The film also features the song “Tin Foil Hat” by a Sault-based band. jupiter marvelous.
“It gives a great mood to the scene where you hear it,” says Nash.
Initially in the midst of violent nature It was to be filmed in the Kawartha Lakes area north of Peterborough.
“In the end, we decided to shoot in Sault,” says the filmmaker.
“We ended up re-shooting a lot of what we shot in the Kawarthas, so we could call it a local production.”
The filmmakers have stated that the majority of the film was shot in the Searchmont and Goulay River areas.
“We also shot in the beautiful wooded areas of the Conservancy and Point des Chênes,” says Nash.
“We also shot some interior scenes and pickup shots in Dundas, Ontario, a few months after main unit filming wrapped.”
The film’s story takes place in a northern Ontario setting, or “nature” as the film’s title uses it in a double sense.
The movie begins with a “monster man” waking up from a shallow grave in the forest.
The camera follows him as he walks through the forest.
“It’s an arthouse take on a very traditional murder-in-the-woods horror movie, and it’s kind of disturbing. Friday the 13th or The Burning” he says.
“But instead of following young people who are dispatched one by one by a masked monster, our film is much more about the killer.”
This first-person perspective makes the film unique.
It also allows Nash to find an opportunity to knock out a camper in a “fun but horrifying way.”
The filmmaker prides himself on the creative ways his characters achieve their goals.
“Although my films exist in the world of well-known horror tropes and include a large amount of special effects and make-up effects, I hesitate to call them horror films because they are not that scary. “I don’t think so,” he says.
“I wouldn’t say it’s boring, because it certainly has an internal impetus, but it’s a very minimalist film, and it doesn’t have the tension of a traditional horror film. From the beginning, we wanted this film to be almost natural. We told ourselves we were going to treat it like a documentary. Our Monster Man is a predator hunting his prey, and he’s as arrogant as he sounds.”
As with many projects, Nash and his team faced more than their fair share of challenges along the way to completing the film.
“Everything happened, from unprecedented extreme weather to the loss of lead actors, equipment failures, and crew illnesses,” Nash says.
“By the time we finished, the production team and I were completely stiff and felt completely invincible. A week before we were scheduled to finish principal photography, producer Shannon Hammer and I went to Ranger Lake. Spent a night in the emergency room after getting a rusty nail stuck in my foot on the road. Luckily, assistant director Nate Wilson is also a very talented filmmaker. [who just premiered his first feature The All Golden at Fantastic Fest in Austin, TX] While waiting to get my tetanus shot, I popped in to get some great footage. ”
For Nash, the film’s themes explore deeper social and psychological themes, but he was never a fan of filmmakers riding on their soapboxes.
“If that’s really what the filmmakers have in mind, the audience themselves will understand the message. There’s no need to articulate it.”
Nash and his team were excited to hear that the film would be premiering at Sundance, one of the most important film festivals in the world.
They are also tempering expectations.
“Some of my favorite filmmakers made their debut at Sundance, but for everyone steven soderbergh or darren aronofsky In addition to movies, there are hundreds of films that disappear into the sky,” he says.
Nash understands that it’s always difficult to determine how real audiences will react to a film.
“My team and I are planning to attend the premiere so we can watch ourselves disappear into the sky firsthand,” he laughs.
“The reality is, being invited to Sundance just means that at least one person liked your film and they happened to be in a position of influence.”
Despite his self-deprecating outlook, many top management agencies, producers, and distribution companies attend Sundance, and they are often on the lookout for new talent.
If selected, it opens many doors for filmmakers and can lead to new opportunities for financing, distribution, and collaboration.
There is also often the possibility that the film will be screened at other film festivals, increasing the filmmaker’s profile and increasing exposure for their work.
“There are no concrete plans for any post-Sundance films at this time,” he says.
“The only thing I know for sure is that it will take place.” tremble [the horror streaming service who graciously funded the film] sometime in the future. We are still figuring out the best way to move forward with this film.”
Finally, Nash said he would like to thank the many local people who helped make this film.
“We are joined by Kim Kienhofer of Stokely Creek Lodge, Arne Larsen of Searchmont, Dennis McCormack of Saw Pit Bay, and Corinna Barrett and Christine Lopeter of the Department of Conservation. , Tonya Hutton of Mark’s Quality Inn, Brown and Karen Morley of Point des Cheynes, Peggy Greco of Prince Township, my My parents and the countless friends and family who volunteered their props, vehicles, talent and time to make this happen.”
For more information, in the fierce nature can be found at sundance website.