April 12, 2016 Interview – Film Director Ace Jordan
In a world of remakes, Horror connoisseurs have to appreciate originality any time they can – sometimes that means digging and researching for Indie films that one may not have heard of. Behind an original movie, however, is the director who took that bold step to try something different, to reach people on a different level and have hope that the outcome will be good. Ace Jordan did this recently with his feature debut Silent Retreat, and audiences are loving this new age, twisted Horror story. This may be his first big film, but this is just the beginning for Jordan and fans are only getting a taste of what this man is capable of doing with the Horror genre. Just recently, Jordan took time out of his schedule to discuss how he got involved with the film industry, what inspired him to do Silent Retreat, his future plans, and much more.
CrypticRock.com – Ace, how did you discover you wanted to be involved in the film industry?
Ace Jordan – Oh, I don’t know. I think it’s just in your blood, like a disease you can’t get rid of. I loved movies as a kid and, very early on, I just started writing my own movies, so as a teen I read a lot of screenwriting books and movie scripts.
CrypticRock.com – That is true. Passion for movies often begins at a young age. Did you always foresee your first movie would be in the Horror genre, or even more specific, Indie Horror?
Ace Jordan – The very first scripts I wrote were Sci-fi and the crappy short films I made as a kid – they were parodies of popular movies. Horror and Comedy are just the most realistic genres for an Indie filmmaker.
CrypticRock.com – That make sense, even more so for Horror. Indie Horror has become a fan favorite. Speaking of, Silent Retreat is your first big film. What was the inspiration for this story?
Ace Jordan – The writers of the short story the film was based on have said they enjoyed Session 9 (2001). My inspirations were The Changeling (1980), The Shining (1980), and Psycho (1960).
CrypticRock.com – Session 9 is an underrated film and all of those are great Horror films! As mentioned, this is your first feature film. How did you go about casting and finding the right actors for Silent Retreat?
Ace Jordan – Pam Gilles is my casting director. The famous Sound City recording studio gave Pam some space at their facility to hold auditions. I was actually in London at the time, so all the auditions were recorded and uploaded online so I could watch them. I never met any of the actors until the day before shooting. I prefer to see them as the audience sees them (on screen) and I don’t want to get to know them because it could alter my decision-making process. Sometimes you have to make very difficult decisions.
CrypticRock.com – That must be a difficult decision, but luckily it turned out perfectly. So far, do you think your audiences have been shocked and pleased by the twists and turns in Silent Retreat?
Ace Jordan – I think the majority of the audiences enjoy the twists and turns. It’s strange to me to learn what people like and dislike about the movie because it’s just so all over the map. There are only a few things anyone seems to agree on. Some people love the movie and some people hate it. Great art is suppose to inspire passion whether it be good or bad, and I think I succeeded in that regard.
CrypticRock.com – Very true. Horror is subjective and everyone feels differently about it. Now that your first film is making waves in the Horror community, do you have any upcoming projects that you are excited about?
Ace Jordan – One of the producers of Silent Retreat is forming a new production company and has asked me to direct their first feature, a teen Slasher. They’ve asked me not to discuss the project until it is ready for pre-production. I am also seeking financing for a prequel to Silent Retreat.
CrypticRock.com – That is exciting to hear about both projects, fans will be glad to hear that! You have touched on many parts of the film industry; writing, directing, film editing, etc. Would you strictly like to direct, or would you also enjoy acting in future movies?
Ace Jordan – I come from an editing background and as much as I love editing, it involves sitting in a dark room for countless hours. So, I’m looking to direct more and focus primarily on directing because it’s just more fun than writing and editing, plus it gets me out of the house. I have acted before and I am considering doing more acting, including a big role in a TV series that I’ve been developing for ages, but I think it may be taking on too much. Acting isn’t as easy as it looks. Perhaps I should try a small part in something first.
CrypticRock.com – It must be hard to juggle all the things you want to do and focus on all the things you are passionate about. As a director yourself, do you have any favorite directors that inspired you?
Ace Jordan – Stanley Kubrick is my favorite directors. I grew up watching a lot of Spielberg movies, so I’m fan of his too. These days, I really look forward to the work of Edgar Wright and Martin Scorsese.
CrypticRock.com – Those are all great directors to look to for inspiration, as well as so many different styles of directing. Are there any genres you would like to work with, beyond Horror?
Ace Jordan – Horror is the most diverse genre so there’s plenty of room to explore there. However, I would love to do Science Fiction or Comedy. I even wrote a teleplay for a War Drama for an HBO show in development that was never produced. So, I am open to pretty much anything.
CrypticRock.com – Hopefully there will be more chances for that. The sky is the limit. Here at CrypticRock, we cover music and a variety of movies, but mostly Horror and Sci-fi. What is your favorite Horror movie and why?
Ace Jordan – I love Silence of the Lambs (1991), although I don’t think it’s really a Horror film. It’s more of a police procedural and Psychological Thriller. I really love Peter Medak’s The Changeling as it is probably my favorite Haunted House movie. The Exorcist (1974) and The Shining are magnificent films and I watch them both regularly.