Writer / Director
Occasionally when I stumble out in public, people will come up to me and shout, “You’re the Devil!”. To this I politely reply with, “You are mistaking me for someone else.” Later I always feel bad for having lied. I guess people watch my films and just put two and two together. I tell tales of demons, zombies, ghosts and madmen…I must be the Devil, or at least on good terms with him. Even though many of my projects are brimming with humor, they tend to sprout from dark places. The Dead inside is no exception. Allow me to expound on that:
One strange night whilst sleeping soundly in bed next to my lover/cinematographer, Shannon Hourigan, I was aroused from my slumber by the most wicked of noises. It was moaning. Not sexy moaning (that would have been awesome), but rather the creepy kind where angels shudder in fear. I rolled over to find Shannon the source of this terrible sound. Shannon breath in…demon breath out. I had never heard anything quite like it and it was chilling. I’m not a man who actually believes in possession, but at that moment I found myself wanting to give it consideration. Shannon did this for a week straight. It got to the point that I had to sleep on the couch because it was not only keeping me up but it was freaking my shit out. I’m sure many of you are thinking it was simple snoring and I need to man up. WELL, YOU WEREN’T THERE! This was certainly not snoring, as it was on the exhale. After a bit of web browsing we discovered it’s a rare condition that can occur when the person is sick (she had a cold at the time). In some cases the moaning never went away. Lucky for us it only lasted the week. We discussed the occurrence which lead to a conversation about possession. At the time we were both interested in making a feature film together, but there was a small problem in the fact the neither of us had been inspired in ages. Our muse had long packed its bags and hopped aboard a moving train. The breathing issue had certainly sparked the idea of a story, but there was still something missing. I still wasn’t writing anything.
Cut to: Live music karaoke bar – Beatles night. My friend, Miss Sarah Lassez, was jamming on stage…rocking the mic, if you will. I was at the bar with Shannon, fully distracted. I was turning the story and characters around in my head, trying to figure out why I couldn’t get motivated to start writing. I paused from my self-torture for a moment and watched Sarah belt out the golden oldie, and that is when it ran into my face. The missing element. I was suddenly flooded with inspiration. Music. For reasons I was not yet sure of, this movie had to be a musical. After that night I had no trouble writing, and before long we had a shooting script.
We put together a skeleton crew and grabbed hold of some awesome talent and started shooting something that I consider to be very unique as well as funny, sad and twisted. I’m not going to sit here and lie to you…this movie rocks. I’m bursting at the seams for you to see it, and if my seams burst then everyone will see that I’m the Devil. This is because I am currently wearing the skin of a man I tricked ages ago. His name was Travis. He’s the perfect cover.
Cinematographer / Production designer
Despite the fact that I didn’t know what a gaffer was, on the first day I was handed one of them (not literally, gaffers are human i quickly learned) and somehow managed to figure out what to do with him. I also learned that extension cords are really called ‘stingers’, apple boxes are not actually for apples (?!) and clothes pins are in fact, ‘c47s’. Amazing.
So I had a good time on the shoot and managed to not cut anyone’s heads off (again, not literally – I’m talking about framing the shot) so I was pretty proud of the finished work.
Cut to 2009 and Travis writes a whole movie about an embarrassing incident where it sounded like demons were trying to crawl out of my throat while i slept (i heard the iphone recording) and it is decided that I will shoot my first feature film.
Armed with my new-found knowledge of film terms and technology I was pretty excited.. until I realized we couldn’t actually afford most of that stuff. Luckily, we shot the bulk of the film in our apartment – which i decorated all pretty – and managed to make it work.
special makeup effects
Tom Devlin has been working professionally as a special makeup effects artist for 11 years. If you’ve ever met Tom, it is clear that monsters, horror movies and Halloween are not just a job for him, but a passion. Through his company 1313FX, Tom has provided creatures and special makeup effects on over 80 feature films. Tom recently appeared as a contestant on the SyFy reality series “Face Off” and is currently climbing the low budget ladder, constantly checking names off the list of people he’s always wanted to work with.
Galicia Vaca Lopez
Galicia grew up in Chicago where she took her first acting class in the third grade. Always putting up plays for her family and friends as a child, Galicia knew she wanted to be a performing artist and inherited her love of movies from her father, who would rent and watch no less than 3 movies a day! While in high school and college, Galicia was always involved in community theater and took up acting at Indiana University.
Soon after completing her studies, Galicia moved to Los Angeles in the summer of 2008 and within a week started working on several productions by DrexelBox and was invited to join the company consisting of actors, writers, directors, cinematographers, and producers. With Jessica Petelle as her mentor, Galicia quickly rose from Production Assistant to Associate Producer of Lo, and then Producer of The Dead Inside, both written and directed by Travis Betz.
Galicia is currently wrapping post-production on Ward Robert’s, Dust Up, with roles both as Producer and Actress. She also played a supporting role in The Grasswills, starring Golden Globe nominee Irene Bedard, and is slated for release in 2011. Galicia is currently the Vice President of the Hollywood Hoosiers, an Indiana University affiliated group consisting of alumni in the entertainment industries of Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago.