Photo Gallery: The Making of a Horror Film

Nov 1, 2014

It's the time of year when people are tuning into special Halloween themed episodes of their favorite shows and searching the horror section of Netflix for their annual haunted pleasure. But some WKU students aren't only watching scary films, they are creating one.

Amber Langston, a WKU film student, wrote and directed "The Milkman," about a milkman in the 1950s who kills his customers. Langston and her crew shot the film Sunday, October 26, 2014. 

Langston wrote the screenplay for a broadcasting class she took last semester. She is directing the film for FILM 482, Advanced Film Production. 

“I honestly can't pin point the exact inspiration for the film. Sometimes ideas just come to me, other times it takes months. I think I just thought of a character and built a scene from that, then a story around that,” Langston said.

Langston had to pick a cast and crew, which she said she got lucky with. “As far as Mindy, I knew I wanted Jordan [Price]. She and I have been friends for about 13 years and she's always helped me with projects. I think she is really a natural and she had the perfect look for Mindy,” Langston said.

Price isn’t a theater major, but she has acted in one of Langston’s films before. “While my experience is limited, I was really excited to try my hand at a scary movie,” Price said.

She knew her character would be killed off, which was both exciting and daunting. Price had to practice screaming and get comfortable around the knives and fake blood. “I really tried to keep the scene as natural as possible. My death scene was slightly difficult because it had both real and pretend elements. I was really duct-tapped to a chair and the knife we used was real, but the danger was not. Amber and the rest of the crew took the safety of the project very seriously.”

There were some rules related to Langston’s class. She was allowed a limited amount of memory card space and only twelve hours to shoot. It took Langston, her Director of Photography and her First Assistant Director seven hours to create a shot sheet detailing shots, locations, time of day, etc. She rewrote the script seven times with help from two professors. In making this film, she learned, “you can never plan enough.”

Because of the tight schedule, Langston and her crew had to cut and combine some scenes, but, Langston said, “shooting day went rather smoothly considering the amount of work we tackled.”

“My favorite part with this film is my favorite part with any film I am fortunate to help in creating. Having characters and a story in your head be described on paper then brought to life on screen is what made me fall in love with film in the first place.”