Jack Messitt: I can’t think of anything in particular, but I did have some crazy dreams while we were shooting. During production, I usually “shoot” and entirely different movie in my dreams. And many of those scenes helped inspire what you see in the final film.
2vs8: How Did You Get Started In Film... To Directing, Is This Where You Want To Be?
Jack Messitt: When I got in the business as a PA, I wanted to be a cameraman. When I went to film school, I wanted to be a cameraman. I have made a good living being a cameraman and I love going to work every day. So when I threw my hat into the directing ring, I figured: “What is the worst that happens? I make a horrible movie and then go back to a career that I love.”
Since Midnight Movie finished, I like to think of myself as a guy with a lot of irons in the fire. I’ll run with the ones that get hot. My cameraman irons have been fairly hot for a while now. And when I first put my director and screenwriter irons in the fire, they actually got hot fairly quickly. If they stay hot, I’d love to explore where they’ll take me.
2vs8: Who Would You Like To Work With, Your Dream Job?
Jack Messitt: I have worked with a lot of wonderful people in this industry. And the one thing that I have realized is that the people I initially dreamed of working with are not the ones I remember the most. And many of the people I want to work with are people that no one has ever heard of - The unsung players out there, both in front of and behind the camera.
For example, when I was growing up I saw The making of Raiders of the Lost Ark. For me, it made a hero out of stuntman Terry Leonard. So when I got into the business, I really wanted to meet him. Lucky for me, I my dream came true when I worked on The Fugitive in Chicago. But I’d love to work with him again!
Jack Messitt: I have had so many influences as a filmmaker. Mainly all the movies I watched throughout my life… While I have a BA in Film Studies and an MFA in Cinematography, sitting down and watching movies has always been the best way to “study” film. And every film I have ever seen, both the good ones and the bad ones, have influenced my work. In the horror genre, I think that if you watch Midnight Movie, you will see an homage to many of my favorites.