RICH INTERVIEW: Allyson Mae Writer/Director/Editor “Ghost House”
First Comics News: What is the story for “Ghost House”?
Allyson Mae: Oh! I can’t tell you the story. But! What I can tell you is that that haunted house doesn’t get its actors from nowhere….
1st: As Director what do you do to help make this movie?
Allyson: As the Director, you decide how the shot will look. Where the camera should be pointed. And helping with the actors making sure they are performing their lines the way The writer and director envision it.
1st: What is your connection with the house where “Ghost House” is being filmed?
Allyson: Ghost House is being filmed at The Wells Township Haunted House. I started working there at a very young age. 12 actually. And now I’m rolling up on my 9th year of doing Haunted Attractions. I’ve done makeup, set design, assistant on the media and commercials, and acting. There’s tons more I could go into but that’s the gist of it.
1st: Have you had any paranormal experiences?
Allyson: Haha yeah. I’ve had many true paranormal experiences at ‘Wells’. We’ve also had many paranormal groups go through and do investigations to get actual documentation. Now we are to the point we have a team called Divine Time that will book private tours for you to come inside the haunted house to experience it for yourself.
1st: Will there be plenty of special effects for the ghosts?
Allyson: Let me just say some of the death scenes are brutal… hahaha
1st: Who are the stars of “Ghost House” and what are their parts?
Allyson: The cast in Ghost House is a mix between actors and actress from Werewolves and ‘Wells’ all very talented people. We have one man who’s actually in a very popular band called Dissension, James Keller he will play a main role as ‘James’. As well as another man who will play a small cameo role, He is big in what we call the haunt industry he makes music for haunted houses, Jerry Vayne. Even one our writers Casey Nestor will be one of the lead roles as ‘Chad’. But a lot of our actors have played roles in many other films and have tons of experience under their belt. Plus the movie will be loaded with Haunted Attraction actors not just from wells but from all around the Midwest. So you’ll see creatures of all sorts.
1st: What does taking “Ghost House” on the road mean?
Allyson: Taking Ghost house on the road means we will be traveling to different venues and showing the film. Not all the details are worked out quite yet. But we definitely know there will be special perks to showing up to these events. Such as behind the scenes videos, questions and answering sessions, autograph signings and much much more. We will have more on that hopefully to come by the end of March. But we have already decided our first stop is Columbus Ohio.
1st: Do you have like a make-up kit to create your special effects make-up?
Allyson: As a special effects artist I have way more makeup than the average woman. I have a travel kit that stands to my waist… and then a few extra bags and tool boxes full of stuff. I also have my own workshop in my garage where I have things like silicone, latex, two-part plastic, mold making things, ingredients to make blood, molds I’ve made in the past. I mean I have just about everything. Haha
Rich: Why do you like horror movies, as a fan?
Allyson: It’s hard to watch horror films when you do horror films, and makeup. You immediately point out better ways to do what they did. And find flaws in what they’ve done. But I love the concept. It’s like this. Filmmakers create entertainment for the average audience. This is a story a group of people came together and created. It’s something someone thought of in their own head and made it a reality. Watching a movie takes you away from the real world for an hour or so. Sometimes it even makes wish you were in that world. Every film I watch makes me want to create films and worlds. To be the things I can’t be. And that’s what’s fun about Ghost House. Watch it before you go to Wells. Then you’ll find yourself right in the middle of a horror film.
1st: What have you most recently worked on before “Ghost House”?
Allyson: Before this. I was living in Florida. I couldn’t find something to work on so I came up with a crazy idea to start a haunted house. It all worked out and I became a manager at this haunt. It was short lived. But it was one of the best experiences I had in my life and I’ll never regret doing it. I had a personal issue and found my way back home. And I’m grateful for it because it brought me to this new adventure. Ghost House. It’s my next big project. And just like everything I do I’m putting my heart and soul into it. So I hope you enjoy it.
1st: Why are you good at any job you do?
Allyson: I wouldn’t say I’m good at everything I do. But no matter what I’m working on. Whether I make money from it or not. Like I earlier said I put my heart and soul into my projects. Once I put my mind into something I get it done. I may not always like what I create. But there are always people out there who enjoy it. Which makes me grateful. But let’s be honest what artist is ever completely satisfied with their work. None. Because no artist is ever done with their art. Which is probably why we have sequels. Anyway, I’ve done a lot. I’ve learned a lot. I’ve made a lot of mistakes. I’ve also created and done a lot of ‘good’ work.
1st: You have many different jobs; running your own shop, haunted house tours and making movies that must keep you really busy, do you have time for anything else?
Allyson: Time for anything else? What else is there to do? I’m doing what I love. And that’s what I focus on. So nope. My career is my hobby.
1st: What is on the back your neck?
Allyson: Well that would be a Bat. I actually got it at a convention called Horror Realm a Pittsburgh tattoo shop came out and was doing horror tattoos for $50. So hey why not right? But I do have an awesome leg tattoo idea with all out my favorite horror film icons. And I’m hoping to start that soon.
1st: Do you have anything to say to all those who have supported your career?
Allyson: Well this is going to be long. Sorry… haha Well I would never be where I am today without a lot of people. And again I’m sorry but I’m going to take this opportunity to mention all of them. First my mom. It all started with carving tombstones out of foam and creating PVC pipe creatures to make our yard the scariest in town. And always allowing me to be scary even when I was probably the only 5-year old dressed as a vampire on Halloween. My favorite memory is when we came up with the idea to skin a mannequin head to make a mask for me. And I walked around that Halloween, my very last time trick or treating at 11? Because I ran into an amazing man who ran a haunted house who was so impressed with the concept he told me when and where to show up to become a part of this amazing place that I now call home. But we’ll get into that later. She’s always been there supporting me when I was a twelve-year-old child doing crazy things at a haunted house at ridiculous hours of the night. Though I know she never actually thought I’d seriously do this for a living until I was 16. From that point further, she’s pushed me every day to do this. No matter what I encounter that makes me fall she’s always been there to pick me back up and tell me ‘shut up, get up, now go back and do it better’… Now, to the man who got me into film David Everly. First I’d like to thank him for trusting me enough to take on Ghost House as the director and editor. But this man took me in at 16 listened to my ideas and then we created the haunted house commercial and all the promo videos we did. We even started collaborating on room ideas in the haunted house together. He and I are so close now I’m happy to say he’s one of my best friends and he pushes me every day to do my research and do things right. So how about that man who owns this haunted house I mentioned… I bothered him for years to work at the haunted back when it was actually in a house but I was always still too young. That day on Halloween he said he wanted me to be a part of the haunted house. I took off that mask and I believe my exact words were ‘about time’ I don’t know if he knows this but if not now he will. He is the main reason I am the beast I am today. He allowed me at 14 to design a room in the haunted house on my own. He’s always been there to call me a badass. He’s also the person to ask if you don’t already believe me, that when I want something I will get it because I have the passion. I have a passion for this industry so deep because of this man no matter how stupid I was when I was younger he still believed in me. I said I wanted to do makeup. He handed me a brush and said go do it. He’s my second dad. I love him to pieces and without him, I would be the amazing artist I am today. He doesn’t get all the credit, though. But he did after all give me a safe place a place where all, seriously all of my friends are from. He is an amazing man and no I’m not special. Because all of us at wells were given what he gave to me. But I just want to say I’m and eternally grateful. So, my friends, I’m not naming them all but, they know who they are. The older ones which are most of them raised me, kinda haha. (Maybe to be a maniac but hey) they taught me new and innovative tricks in the industry. They deal with my stress and outrageous spurts of energy. And somehow they still love me. We all have a common goal to create the best damn haunted house out there. And now to create a damn good horror film. My mentors and bosses. Chris and Dejah Gilgour. They may not see this but they were my motivation throughout college and while working with them at two other haunted attractions. They kept me steady and taught me a ton. Last but not least… Len… my rock in college and then after. He was always there to give me the best advice and make sure I didn’t overwhelm myself. Even if it meant talking to me while dying on the floor in his office. To anyone else I didn’t mention because this is ridiculously long. I love you all. Thank you for believing in me.