Wednesday, April 25, 2012


As I've been finishing up the script for my next movie, Olalla, I've been thinking a lot about vampires. Mostly since my next movie involves vampires and we just wrapped on another movie about vampires, Dead But Dreaming, and we'll be shooting the second movie in that series soon as well.

The poster of the movie that ruined my 6th year
That will make my movie the third this year. So, what's with all the interest in vampires? For me it started pretty young. When I was about 6 years old my father showed me the movie Fright Night. I'm sure he thought it was appropriate for someone my age, being rated PG. It wasn't, it scared the living daylights out of me and I wore a scarf to bed for a year after that, even in the summer, thinking that vampires were going to come and kill me in the night.  Children tend to think that the world centers around them, don't they?

After the year was up and the vampires didn't come to kill me, I gave up wearing the scarf to bed and began thinking about the origin of the vampire myth. It was just around this time, I was 7 and in second grade, that I was learning about research papers and researching. So, I went to my school library and found several books about vampires. I read them all. In the midst of this, I began to understand the origins of the vampire in media.

She gives you that weird feeling
In my school library were a series of books about monster movies (Universal Studios) from the 30s-60s. The idea of the vampire in film began to take hold of me as a concept. My research broadened to the local library where I read more books and understood the vampire myth and where it came from. I thought about how amazing it would be to make a movie about vampires. It became a lifelong dream. Nay, obsession.

So, you must be thinking that I'm making a movie about the same kind of vampires as Jac's Dead But Dreaming. Nope. Dead But Dreaming's vamps are more classic, infectious vampires, bites, exchange of blood, and a little magical realism later, you've got a legion of the undead. Romantic vampires, with hopes and dreams, and vengeance, internal struggles. Good stuff, but not the same as my vampires.

In my research, I think I got to Robert Louis Stevenson when I was about 9 or 10 years old, I came across R.L.S.'s Olalla. It's the story considered to be the introduction of the concept of genetic vampirism, on which my movie is partly based. A soldier goes to a villa to convalesce, only to fall in love with the daughter of the decadent family who resides there. The family has a craving for blood. It's a strange story. At that time porphyria and related diseases were little understood, thus resulting in the idea that a "vampiric" disease could, or did, exist.

My vampires are a family, a rather large family, who has learned to survive through the ages by keeping a low profile. They crave blood, they have to drink it, but it's not considered good form to kill thy neighbors, so they do it discretely. Some of them never even leave the house. And they tend to live longer than other humans.

My character* is named Olalla. She goes back to her family's home after a few years of attempting to escape them and her affliction; the prodigal daughter returns after having done something very, very bad.

For me, Olalla, inflicted with inherited vampirism, has a struggle that is literally superhuman. It separates her from the rest of humanity, it makes her a monster. At the same time, she has no desire to be like the rest of her family. Riddled by incest, they keep the line going, they do not mix their tainted genes with normal human beings. And there are other branches of the family as well. 

In an attempt to "educate" Olalla, so that she does not have to be "put down", her uncle Victor returns to the house to be her "teacher". What ensues is severe corporeal punishment, incest, nudity, bondage, all of the good nasty stuff that should be in a movie of this sort. You know what I mean. While I'm including a bit of camp, and it has its humorous moments like all of my films, it's a disturbing story.

*Yes, I gave the lead female role to myself. I really didn't want to do a casting for an actor who (might) do what I'll willingly do in a movie. I'm less trouble to work with ;)


  1. Maleficarum es una interesante pelicula que muestra las atocidades que se cometian en otras epocas en nombre de la religion.

    1. Muchas gracias, yo creo que es importante entender la violencia. Hasta ahora muchas atrocidades se cometan en el nombre del "estado" y otros.

  2. Hola Amy, espero te encuentres bien , .. me encanto tu trabajo en maleficarum y obviamente estoy de acuerdo con indiecita, en nombre de la religion se cometian tantas atrocidades...tu trabajo es impactante y la pelicula en general muy buena...yo tambien estoy en tu de argentina. ciudad de la plata. beso grande.

  3. amy,

    your adaptation of the story sounds delicious and metaphorically about yourself, euphemizing a lifestyle or inherent female trait as vampirism. Take yourself and what you have to say seriously. I can't wait to see this film. Creatively, you are fascinating...and courageous.