Leicester-based Hive Films, producers of Finding Richard and Zombie Undead, have announced shooting of horror thriller Acid Daemons, which will take place around the city in February.
With a main set in South Leicester, the feature length film will bring together cast and crew from films as diverse as Shaun of The Dead, This Is England and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
This is a story of parallel worlds, almost perfectly superimposed upon each other. One world is the run-down housing estate in which Hannah has spent her teenage years. Hannah and her brother Carlo live on the 18th floor of a housing block in which an eccentric chemist has set up a kitchen sink laboratory. In a dream he saw a new designer drug. Now he has created it.
When Carlo tries it, he glimpses another world – a world of daemons. Then he disappears into it. Hannah knows that the only way to rescue Carlo is to follow him. Is this hallucination or is it reality? And what will happen if she leaves a doorway open between both worlds…
Casting for the young lead roles has begun at BAFTA-winning The Television Workshop in Nottingham. The Workshop’s previous casting successes include Samantha Morton (Minority Report), Joe Dempsie (Game of Thrones), Vicky McClure (Broadchurch) and Toby Kebbell (Fantastic Four), as well as countless writers, directors, producers and presenters. Casting so far includes newcomers Ella Roebuck-Swain as Hannah and Jack Dewick as Carlo, alongside Audrey Ardington (Dr Who) as Doris, Jon Campling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows) as Talis and Kieran Hardcastle (This is England) as Cooper.
Co-writers Rod Duncan and Rhys Davies have placed a strong female lead at the heart of Acid Daemons. Hannah is a force of nature. Her love for her brother helps her to transcend the difficulties of her background and surroundings. But there are demons from their shared past which threaten to re-enter their lives.
Rod revealed: “We didn’t want to present the housing estate as something inherently dark or miserable. There is life and creativity and passion here. Hannah sits at the centre of that.”
Rhys, who also directs the film, says his vision for Acid Daemons is “Shane Meadows meets John Carpenter”, adding “By locating the film in an everyday setting we can ramp up the concept of the ‘other’ – the daemons and their world layered underneath.”
Rhys directed and produced cult horror film Zombie Undead, which received a theatrical release and international distribution in 2010. It was described by the Fantasporto festival (rated by Variety as the world’s premiere fantasy festival) as “Pure British gore” and Scream magazine as “A brain- munching classic.” His latest short film Finding Richard, starring former Dr Who Colin Baker, premiered at Cannes in 2014.
Co-writer Rod Duncan is the author of six novels published by Simon & Schuster and Angry Robot Books, including The Riot Trilogy, comprising Backlash, Breakbeat and Burnout. His work has won nominations for both the Philip K. Dick Award and John Creasey Dagger of the Crime Writers’ Association.
Special Makeup Effects Artist Stuart Conran has a long and prestigious history in special make-up effects, prosthetics and mould making. Since beginning his career on Hellraiser, Stuart has worked on projects as diverse as Shaun of the Dead, Batman, The Piano, The Madness of King George, The Hours, Alexander, Braindead, The Descent, Attack the Block, The Peter Serafinowicz Show, Look Around You, From Hell, Saving Private Ryan, The Tenth Kingdom and Spitting Image.
Stuart said: “I was initially attracted to Acid Daemons by its unique story and atmosphere. There is scope to come up with some interesting and provoking ideas, as well as meet the challenge of a limited budget.”
The movie will be shot mostly on purpose built sets. Director Of Photographer Tom Barker said: “Using purpose built sets gives us complete control. As a DOP it liberates me to focus on my art and raise the production levels of the film as high as possible.”
Recent credits of Assistant Director Patrick Waggett, who was also AD on Hive Films second feature film How To Make A Movie For 43 Pounds, include Avengers: Age Of Ultron and Edge Of Tomorrow.