Horror Favourites – David L.G. Hughes

To celebrate the release of new mythical epic Of Gods and Warriors, we hear from writer/director David L.G. Hughes on his all-time favourite horror film which, in turn, inspired this new movie…

Once upon a time in the mythical Kingdom of Volsung, Princess Helle (rising star Anna Demetriou, making her first lead appearance) is the rightful heir to the throne, but she is forced to flee after she’s framed for the murder of her father, the King. On the run, she seeks guidance from the Viking God Odin (Screen legend Terence Stamp, The Limey, Superman) to gain the training and wisdom needed to take back Volsung and fulfil her destiny.

Boasting an exciting ensemble cast, the film co-stars Will Mellor (Broadchurch, Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps), Martyn Ford (Kingsman: The Golden Circle) and Ian Beattie (Game of Thrones, Alexander). From Misfits Entertainment, the acclaimed producers of the Tribeca Film Festival nominated McQueen, and helmed by up-and-coming filmmaker David L.G. Hughes, Of Gods and Warriors is an epic you won’t want to miss.

Check out the trailer below:

On his favourite horror, Hughes explains, “it was always HELLRAISER for me. I’d been a Clive Barker nut since stumbling across WEAVEWORLD in a second hand bookshop in Spain as a very young and impressionable teenager. The cover sucked me in, but the story – the world – kept me there. The artwork for HELLRAISER had the same effect on me. Which is to say Pinhead had the same effect – because what else did the poster need to be? Pinhead was so instantly iconic that shaking that image was impossible for me.

The concept art with Timo Nieminen, photo by Henrik Adamsen, design by Anders Bundgaard:

And I still can’t shake it. When I started talking about creating a very unique weapon for the lead villain in OF GODS AND WARRIORS, Pinhead came back to haunt me again. I was working with the brilliant prop master, Anders Muammar, in Sweden and I asked him if we could come up with something that was a homage to Pinhead. The brief was a severed head with spikes on a chain that our villain could swing around and attack with

This was very early on in the process – before there was even a script – but Anders got to work. He took a cast of my head and slowly but surely came up with the most horrific of weapons. My head with giant spikes sticking out of it on a chain…

David L.G. Hughes getting the cast made in Anders Muammar’s prop studio…

Using the designer Anders Bundgaard, photographer Henrik Adamsen and the actor Timo Nieminen, we even came up with some concept art which helped us raise funding for the film.

Timo ended up in the movie – playing the head swinging Prince Bard. But this version of the weapon did not. We had to accept that it wasn’t the most practical of weapons, so we took the same idea and made it more robust: we ended up with a severed head in a iron cage covered in spikes. Now we had something our villain could really fight with. There’s a fun scene in the movie when Prince Bard goes to the Blacksmith’s with his henchmen to pick up his new weapon. The cage is ready, but there’s no head in it. And you know the Prince won’t be leaving until that cage is filled, but who’s head will roll?

With added glasses for comedy effect:

Back to HELLRAISER, and a confession. I’ve only actually seen it once. I remember reading an interview with John Waters, who said if you love a film, never watch it again, as your memory is usually better than the reality. I’ve used this as my reason for never returning to HELLRAISER. But I know in my heart it’s a lie. The truth is I’m too scared to go back.”

Of Gods and Warriors is released in UK cinemas 19th July and on Blu-ray & DVD 30th July from 101 Films
Book cinema tickets here http://www.thefilmlabel.com/of-gods-and-warriors/
Pre-order on Blu-ray and DVD: http://amzn.eu/a5wBXt7

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