Three years ago, directors Meredith Holland and Noelle Bye knew they wanted to make a horror film. They just didn't have a concept. But after coming up with an idea based on a role-playing game, they had what they thought would be a good storyline and set out to make the film, which they called Chill.
"They wanted to make the movie about a viral Internet game," says local actor/executive producer William Conners who stars in the movie. "The game becomes a cult fascination."
Shot in Lakewood, Akron, Oberlin, Garfield Heights, Chagrin Falls, Norton, Seville and Canton, the movie makes use of local actors too.
"It's a talented group of people," says Conners. "[Star] Rick Montgomery Jr. has done countless movies. And you have someone like [local burlesque dancer] Bella Sin, who jumped on board. The support was just crazy. If you look online now, there's national buzz. We've had reviews in Europe and London and Australia and it hasn't hit national distribution yet. It's crazy how fast it's hit."
The film's buzz started after it won Best Picture at LongstarCon 3, a horror movie convention that took place in Texas earlier this year.
"I see great things coming from the movie and there are already talks for a sequel," says Conners. "We didn't expect to blow-up. I haven't seen a movie from Cleveland get this kind of attention in a long time."
The film shows at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 30 and Thursday, Oct. 31 at the Garfield Heights Center for the Performing Arts. A Q&A session will follow the screenings, and tickets are $7.