Before we know it 2016 will have ended. It is time to start looking forward at the films we will see released in 2017. One of the horror films we are really looking forward to is the creepy clown film ‘Crepitus‘, directed by Haynze Whitmore and penned by Eddie Renner and Sarah Renner.
Horror icon Bill Moseley (Death House,The Devil’s Rejects) is set to play the role of Crepitus, an evil entity that takes the form of a clown and has a taste for the flesh of children. Lance Paul, Raiden Moore, Jackey Hall, Mike Hard, and Caitlin Williams co-star alongside Moseley.
The film centers around seventeen year old Elizabeth and her younger brother Julian, The two are about to face something even more frightening than their life with their alcoholic, abusive mother. When the family is forced to move into their grandfather’s old house the ghosts are the least of their problems. They will soon learn the horrible secrets about their family. Just when it seems things couldn’t get any worse for the siblings, they become the target of Crepitus.
I had the opportunity to ask both Haynze Whitmore and Eddie Renner a few questions about their upcoming film. I would like to share their responses with you now.
Horror Fuel: “What inspired the film?”
Whitmore: “After working on a very ambitious film called “Asylum of Secrets”, we decided to focus on something more doable with less characters and a budget we can work with. Myself and Eddie Renner were really getting sick of these fast-food fly by night horror films with cheap thrills. So we thought of a creepy clown that haunts a house that would creep you out through the whole film.”
E. Renner: “Let’s face it, despite their intended goofy, carefree, silly nature, clowns can be really flippin’ scary. Haynze Whitmore and I had been talking about writing a script based around an evil clown for some time. We sat down at a local restaurant in Cheboygan and bounced a few ideas around until we came up with a basic story structure. The rest slowly evolved over 8 months of writing, rethinking, correcting, adding scenes and multiple rewrites.
I wrote most of the script and then handed it over to my amazing wife, Sarah, who is brilliant at developing realistic characters. Catching a few plot issues, she polished the story and breathed life into the script through some fresh dialogue and additional scenes.
We didn’t want to just write a story about a scary clown. We wanted to write a story that was frightening on many levels. Our film focuses on both the supernatural as well as tangible fears like child abuse, things that go bump in the night, family secrets and other real life terrors.
Eddie & Sarah Renner
Horror Fuel: “What sets it apart from other horror films?”
Whitmore: “I believe that Crepitus will be unique and dementedly charming. This film won’t be full of quick cheap thrills but an intense storyline that will keep the viewer glued to their seat. Lately I’ve watched some of these new horror films that claim to be the scariest thing you will ever see, but tend to fall short. Eddie Renner and myself really want to make a truly intensely haunting film that people will be talking about for years to come.”
Horror Fuel: “Can you tell us about Bill Moseley’s role in Crepitus?”
Whitmore: “Bill will be playing Crepitus the clown and will be popping and cracking his bones. We love the fact that he will be playing this role. I’m really excited to work with Bill as we develop this character.”
E. Renner: “Anyone who loves horror knows the name Bill Moseley. He’s played so many unusual and iconic roles throughout his career. Haynze and I were daydreaming early on while I was working on the script and we joked about how awesome it would be to have Bill play Crepitus. We never guessed that dream would come true.
Crepitus is an ancient creature that is loosely based off of the legend of the Wendingo. However, Crepitus’ origins are not discussed in this film.
When Crepitus moves around, every bone in his body cracks and pops, because he suffers from the medical condition, crepitus, hence his name. Creptius also likes to speak in rhyme, so having acted in “Repo! A Genetic Opera” and being the frontman for the band, Corn Bugs, Bill Moseley’s experience with singing will be a real asset while tackling Creptius’ lyrical dialogue.
The story goes like this: As civilization encroached upon the ancient being, Creptius’ hunting grounds, he had to find new ways to hunt his victims. This eventually brought about the birth of “Crepitus the Clown.” Dressing as a clown allowed him to lure in tasty children with ease.
Bill acted alongside Sid Haig as the clown, Captain Spaulding, in “House of 1,000 Corpses” and “Devil’s Rejects.” Now it’s time for Bill to take on the role of an entirely different type of clown and we can’t wait for our audience to see it.”
Horror Fuel: “What can we expect to see from Crepitus?”
Whitmore: “Everyone should expect to be thrown into an isolated environment were u will feel as if you’re living these two kids terrifying lives. This film will give you a creepy uneasy feeling coupled with a sense of realism throughout its entirety as we touch on childhood fears, coulrophobia, and claustrophobia.”
Horror Fuel: “Some are comparing Crepitus to Pennywise in IT. How would you respond and how would you describe the differences between the two characters?”
E. Renner: “Crepitus is still in preproduction, so naturally, not a lot of information about the film’s plot is available to the public. Right now, people are seeing that Bill Moseley is playing an immortal clown who eats children and that’s basically all the info they have. It’s natural for everyone to compare another clown-themed film to “IT.” There is a lot of media attention surrounding the theatrical adaption of Stephen King’s novel. It is in the forefront of their minds. I guarantee you, these are two distinctly different tales and characters.
The plot from films like King’s “IT,” Eli Roth’s “Clown” and Crepitus are not simply based around clowns eating children. Their stories are much more complex than that. It’s apples and oranges, for sure.
Clowns and their adolescent victims are a common theme in horror. However, theme and plot are two different things. You could perhaps argue that the theme is ripped off, but then, for example, you would have to also argue that there is only one true vampire/werewolf/zombie film and all the rest are rip-offs of the very first one released. It’s like saying King stole his plot for “IT” from the clown scenes in “Poltergeist.”
I assure you that the story of Crepitus is not in any way similar to “IT,” aside from the two clowns enjoying a similar diet. We hope you have an appetite to watch.”
Horror Fuel: “When will production begin and where will it be filmed?”
Whitmore: “Principle Photography will begin Jan 9th of 2017 in Cheboygan, Michigan between two locations. The main location is the Crepitus house for the majority of the film and an old school gymnasium converted to a soundstage. We are so happy to be filming our hometown of Cheboygan. It’s a beautiful quaint town that is a perfect setting for this mysterious and demented story.
Horror Fuel: “What are you most looking forward to during filming?”
Whitmore: “Getting the performances and feeling of the film. I’m so honored to be working with talented actors like Bill Moseley, Jackey Hall, Raiden Moore, Mike Hard, and Caitlin Williams. Also I’m really excited to visually tell this story with help from the amazing Tyson Maughan. He is a great friend and a great cinematographer and I know we will calibrate well together. I have a fantastic crew and look forward to creating a great film and great memories.”
Horror Fuel: “When will filming begin and when might we see it released?”
Whitmore: “Filming will be in January and some shots will be done in the spring (exterior). We hope to have the film released by late summer early fall of 2017 or maybe near Halloween.”
Horror Fuel: “Please, tell us about your Indiegogo campaign.”
E. Renner: “Indiegogo has become a fabulous resource for independent filmmakers to create amazing films that would have never had a chance before crowdfunding. Crowdfunding allows the fans to decide what they want to see. To be able to work with people on this level is terrific.
Our Indiegogo began as just a dream when we clicked the publish button. This campaign would let us know if Crepitus had a chance. Contributions poured in and we reached our goal with a week to spare, with most of the donations coming from our hometown of Cheboygan, MI, where Crepitus will also be filmed. Our friends and neighbors believed in us enough to lift our production to its current status. It was very heartwarming and we were thrilled.
We are now onto phase two, raising an additional $5k. People who don’t understand the process will likely think that a measly $10k is not enough to fund a film like this and technically they’d be correct, but wrong at the same time. Let me explain: We have some investors who are very interested in this film and are ready to give us the funds we need to make it amazing. They want us to raise at least $10k through social media, which amounts to a litmus test. This will prove to them that people are definitely interested in our film. If we reach our goal, we will get a much larger funding from those high-end investors. So yes, in this case, $10k can get this film made and make it incredible at the same time.”
I must say, ‘Crepitus’ sounds both interesting and scary. I can’t wait to see it! Be sure to check out our article on ‘Crepitus’ to learn more. You can show your support for the film by visiting the Crepitus campaign page and grabbing a great perk like a digital download, a signed copy of a story board, signed posters and more. Follow the official Facebook page for updates, behind the scene photos and exclusives.