Director Tom Paton announces the nationwide release of NFA nominated ‘Redwood’

Tom Paton has proudly announced the nationwide release of National Film Award nominated  thriller ‘Redwood’. Starring National Film Award nominee Mike Beckingham and Buffy’s Nicholas Brendan, this vampire based movie filmed over a three week period in the woods in Poland is finally going to be released across the UK following on from Paton’s recent film ‘Pandorica’.

Geek Syndicate (GS): Since we last spoke, Redwood is about to be released nationwide, this has been long awaited, how are you feeling?

Tom Paton (TP): When you are filming you don’t really think about the release part it really brings it back to life. It was such a crazy experience. I was approached in Cannes as ‘Pandorica’ was being shown there and it was thought that I would be a good fit to make it. There was no script, I wrote the script in two days and case it in a week. We spoke before I went to start filming in Poland three weeks later and we shot it in 14 days. We were re-writing on the fly. When you write it on the page but then have a real actor actually say it and it’s not right, it has to change there and then. Getting Nick from Buffy was great. I had to do extensive post production myself it was full on. Things have moved on since then, I was approached about making ‘Black Site’- it had not really taken shape. I was approached about ‘Pandorica 2’ but it didn’t feel right. I proposed ‘Black Site’. Mike Beckingham returned for ‘Black Site’ which we filmed in an underground nuclear site in Kidderminster. Redwood sold out twice and Mike Beckingham is up for a nod at the National Film Awards as Best Actor, we also have nominations for Best Film and Best Thriller. It is touch competition, Mike is up against Ewan McGregor, Jude Law and Bill Nighy.

GS: Tell me more about what you’re up to at the moment.

TP: We are deep in post-production, I under-estimated the visual effects we would need. It is keeping me grounded and focused. 2 years ago I was filming in woods in Billericay now I have four projects for film and TV, it has gone crazy.

GS: You have worked many times now with Mike Beckingham. What creates such a strong relationship between you as actor and director?

TP: When you find an actor you really click with, you want to work with them again. Mike was recommended to me, I sat down with him and he was excellent. Mike is very capable, he has such range and complexity. Black Site really exploits his talents. I wrote it specifically for him. He has big stuff going on at the moment.

GS: Tell me more about the synopsis for ‘Black Site’.

TP: I am really into mythology, cosmic horror. I like genre blending, I am a big fan of Joss Whedon, I like to mash things together, there is also some Lovecraftian action in there too. It is like a mixture of ‘Lovecraft’ and ‘Assault on Precinct 13.’ It is based around an organisation that finds and deports Elder gods. They trap them inside death row inmates and send them back. One of them kills the main protagonist’s parents and the daughter ends up being last man standing at the facility in a holding area called Black Site. There is action and comedy. It is like ‘Escape from New York’ meets John Carter’s ‘Apocalypse’ trilogy.

GS: How will writing for TV affect your style?

TP: The long story form is as cinematic as a film. I am known for taking a small budget and making it look expensive. TV is like making a cool film every week. The key is in the writing, the characters and the plot. I have other films coming up following on from ‘Redwood’ and ‘Black Site’. I want my films to be recognised for their signature style like Abrams and Spielberg and I want to carry that through into my TV work. With TV you can have a cool idea and follow it through in depth. The genre for the TV work is sci-fi/ horror. I am also doing a period piece as well which is a real passion project for me. It is interesting that the genres that generate the best viewing figures are still seen as low-brow.

GS: So how long until we see another Tom Paton production on our screens?

TP: I have 4 projects in development now. I am also in the running to tackle the reboot of a very well-known horror franchise. I am weighing up my options which is a great position to be in. I have momentum and the release of ‘Redwood’ this year and ‘Black Site’ next year will keep my films in the public eye. I am self-taught, I will keep making movies, keep business rolling in. I have lots of ideas still to bring into creation.

For more information check out @redwoodmovie or www.redwoodmovieofficial.com

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