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  • Tag Archives What is Scary?
  • Random-Ass Interview: Adam Barnick

    If you wish to learn more about Adam Barnick, you can visit either www.adambarnick.com or www.whatisscary.com

    Scariest children’s show, either intentionally or unintentionally? GO!

    Tales from the Darkside wasn’t technically a kid’s show, but it freaked me the hell out as a kid. “Inside the Closet” still haunts me. Though I have a feeling I would laugh at it and my 9-year-old self if I went back and watched it. I remember seeing reruns of Land of the Lost back then that were pretty conceptually scary at that age. I was on the fence with the Sleestaks…now, I find them cute, and would love them as ushers at my wedding someday.

    I have been wearing the same socks for two days now. What is the maximum amount of time you’ve ever worn an article of clothing for?

    There’s just no way to make the answer interesting. Had the same pair of shorts (outer shorts, not boxers) on for 3 days last week when I was trapped in the house convalescing. But normally I always try to stay fresh.

    Why does Jennifer Cooper call you Evil B? Is it because she is special?

    Jennifer is indeed special. But she got that nickname from other friends of mine who coined it. A few years back, a friend told me he liked my last name because it sounded like a perfect 80’s villain surname. Like a criminal out of Tango and Cash- “The drug shipments can all be traced back to Barnick!” I can’t remember if I came up with the fake mythology after that, or if friends started it and I added to it. It evolved into a full criminal empire where I was releasing my own albums and copyrighting the number 4 so I got a percentage every time it was used. And plenty of killin’ folks real good. Might be time to phase out the nickname, but it just has a stronger ring to it than Nice Guy Barnick. Evil…it’s just FUN.

    I’ve put off getting my teeth fixed because I’m broker than shit. Have you put off anything you should have dealt with immediately? This can be anything, doesn’t have to be a medical thing.

    Yes and unfortunately, it’s been my Achilles Heel in the past. There’s too many things I’ve put off that should have been dealt with ASAP. Could be deadlines in school, production snags, telling someone how I really felt about them, etc. I’m getting better at it, but that kind of resistance can be a daily battle, in big or small ways. I don’t think I’ve delayed anything medical or health-related though.

    What monster would you be, if you could be a monster?

    The Thing (Carpenter’s version). Might as well think big.
    Or can I be Sam, from Trick r’ Treat? That basically IS me. You don’t show respect for Halloween, I will fuck you up. It’s a coin toss.

    Favorite book?

    Wow, that changes often. Instead of giving you 4-5 novels vying for first place, I’ll give you a non-fiction one: The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield. I’d just mentioned that resistance people feel whether it’s creatively or personally. Pressfield articulates it and helps kick you in the ass to push through it. If you’re a blocked writer/painter/filmmaker etc, Pressfield’s a guy to look into.

    If a mime were to rob you, if he used a real gun, would that go against the mime code?

    Probably, but I’m not a man to assume what a mime is and is not allowed to do. Know what I’m saying? I’ll get back to you on this.

    You almost done with your documentary? Tell us about it. Us being me readers and I, not me and my split personality… I mean I don’t have a split personality. Yes, let’s stick with that.

    My upcoming documentary “What is Scary?” is probably 40% done. Slow goings, but I’m not on a deadline. I work on it in between more immediate projects. I’ll be heavily back into it this Fall. That project came out of being frustrated at how long it took to try and set up other projects and develop scripts, and feeling like I had no resources at all. Wondering what could I do completely or almost completely on my own, instead of complaining I wasn’t making bigger movies yet.

    I was thinking about scary things, and what we have in common and what sets us apart in terms of fear… and I decided to set up a voicemail and invite people to call in and answer the title question as they saw fit. And the responses were so interesting and thought-provoking, I began to string them together in a sort of visual journey/documentary, which is more akin to an art installation than a traditional doc with interviews. It’s evolving, but it’s always been intended to be simple. The first teaser I put out got a great response, I’ll probably have an interesting announcement about it by year’s end. But I may just keep quiet and stay in the cave for a bit and just come out when it’s ready to be screened and released. For now you can check the first website out for it at www.whatisscary.com.

    Big Millennium fan? I am, Frank Black forever.

    Definitely. While I think the uneven nature of the show (with it changing formats and show runners and mythologies each year) damaged it a bit, it was seriously ballsy of a basic TV network to take on a program that was really trying to explore and examine and articulate ‘evil’. Not exactly entertainment for the masses. Some incredibly frightening images, characters, and above all, ideas in that show. And you just can’t beat Lance Henriksen. Like ever. He is one of our acting treasures. We don’t have a lot of actors these days like him. The Warren Oateses, Lee Marvins. Flat-out MEN, you know? Non-pretty boys who have life etched in their faces. I want to work with him one day…or at least arm wrestle him and lose gracefully.

    If you could resurrect anybody to have dinner with, who would it be?

    My grandfather. Or if it had to be a celeb-type, Stanley Kubrick.

    Favorite nonsense word?

    Persemplitude.

    Do you think the show Thundercats is directly responsible for furries? Follow up, if not Thundercats, do you blame 80’s cartoons for furries. We need to blame someone for furries.

    I’ve a feeling the dark origins of furries lies somewhere in the 70’s. Just before our time. I’m not sure if this is a Pandora ’s Box we should open. But no, Thundercats was just good clean fun.

    Favorite non-horror film?

    The French Connection.

    Favorite horror film?

    It alternates between Phantasm and Paperhouse.

    Favorite comic book character?

    Tie between Spawn/Al Simmons and Spider-Man. Tony Stark is up there too though.

    Have you ever been in a fight?

    Yep.

    How’d you hurt yo’self?

    Severe neck sprain at the gym. I’m honestly not sure how I did it. I think I tore up something in my shoulder that went up to the neck. Not enjoying spending all day in a brace. I’ve had surgery that hurt less than this. I will rise again though, Voorhees-style. Just you wait.

    You see a dollar fall out of a man’s pocket in front of you in line. He doesn’t notice though. Do you take the dollar if he cut you in line, or do you take the dollar if he was real polite and nice to you? I guess the question is, does how someone treats you matter in regards to whether or not you would take their lost dollar? (I would either way, as stated, brokies.)

    Either way, I probably wouldn’t take the dollar. But if he was an ass to me, I probably wouldn’t bother to get his attention that he’d lost it either.

    A monkey knocks on your door, with a note that says, “I need a good home.” Do you keep the monkey, or do you give him up to animal control?

    Animal control. They’ll find him a good home. I’m way too goddamn busy. He can watch movies with me till they get here though.

    Follow up question, you find that the monkey has a heroin problem…somehow. Do you still keep the monkey as a pet, and try to get him to kick the junk? Do you film the monkey doing heroin, before you try to get him clean? Or, do you just go, “yeah too much for me”, and call animal control?

    Animal control’s problem. But if I happened to be writing a screenplay involving scenes of monkeys doing smack, I’d probably pick his brain a bit before letting the Feds deal with him. I’d sneak him a leaflet about how drugs aren’t cool before he left, though.

    Did you get picked on a lot on high school?

    Only as a freshman. I’m not sure what turned the tide, but the other 3 years of high school were manageable. As manageable as being a rare creative weirdo in a sea of drones can be.

    Favorite vegetable?

    Captain Pike.

    Any pets? Do you in fact have a monkey?

    I only keep pets I can eat.

    Would you like to see a sequel to Dunston Checks In, that is a horror film? Kind of like Monkey Shines, but without the wheelchair bound guy. So, like a slasher, but with a monkey. But, not that one Argento film, Phenomena. Besides, that monkey only was in it killing people for a little bit.

    I’m actually on my second draft of Dunston Checks Out for Fox. It’s kind of Murders in the Rue Morgue meets monkey Manchurian Candidate. There may or may not be a musical number in it.

    Have you ever seen Monkey Shines?

    I have. That part with the monkey was great.

    Do you believe in sea monsters?

    They believe in me, I’m told. I want to believe.

    Do you believe there is such a thing is too far in a film?

    I’m not sure! I’m not really looking, when I seek out films, to just out-deprave the previous cinematic experience. I’ve been turned off by some films, but never to the point where I ranted that a film shouldn’t have been made or the director shouldn’t be working, etc.

    What do you think of the phrase torture porn?

    It’s an idiotic buzzword journalists invented to lump sum the entire cinematic output in horror for the past 7 years or so. While I’m all for gore when it’s needed, I don’t think anyone gets turned on from seeing people strapped to chairs and hurt. They’re confusing people being emotionally affected by a film, or appreciating the technical artistry of the makeup effects. The movies that people claim started this, films like Saw and Hostel, weren’t all about the violence, they were strong stories, well-told. But a lot of studios assumed the only reason people went was for the violence, so we got a sea of empty, nasty pictures flooding the market. I think the tide’s turning. But the term torture porn needs to die. Offscreen.

    Would you have sex with a ghost? It could be like, Marilyn Monroe’s ghost, or someone else you find very attractive?

    YES. Am I inviting hauntings by saying that? (Possibly Evil B.)

    Follow up, would sleeping with a ghost be necrophilia or something different entirely?

    Well, you’re not fooling around with a rotting corpse, right? That’d just be inappropriate. So I guess the term wouldn’t work. I’ll let you know. Now I’ve got ideas for a comedy script involving using a Ouija as a booty call device. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Do you think vampires can do it? I don’t think it makes sense that they could, but then, it doesn’t really make sense that they eat and digest blood, and that somehow keeps them alive? I guess the main question is, how would their genitals get enough blood to perform the necessary functions? I mean, do vampires have hearts that pump? Oh, vampyahs!

    I’m assuming they have their own kind of vampire blood that allows for their parts to function as needed. Human blood’s just like Red Bull for them. And yes, vampire’s hearts pump. Just trust me on this.

    You seen Troll Hunter yet?

    Nope. I’m a bad apple.

    Would you keep a pet Troll if it was small enough to live in your house?

    You betcha! Unless he was the kind that just slams people on the Internet all day.