Debuting writer and director Oscar Dean Ray gave Fango the scoop that principal photography has commenced on SACRED BLOODS, a Darkwood Motion Picture Productions horror feature currently shooting in Oklahoma City, OK. Starring Larry (THE SOPRANOS) Sellers, Ford (CARNIES) Austin, Heather (WISTERIA: THE STORY OF ALBERT FISH) Surdukan, Jessica Dixon and Peter Zhmutski, the film tells the rather epic story of an ancient Roman vampire queen attempting to create a bloodsucker army. When she transforms a descendant of a race of extraterrestrial warlords known as “E-Mortaks” (the mortal enemies of the vampires’ ancestors, the Gifters), the stage is set for an ancient prophecy to be fulfilled which could spell doom for both humans and ghouls.
Production publicist Cannon Ray further explains, “The story was initially titled CUP OF SACRED BLOODS, and the first draft resembled a story that could have been titled INDIANA JONES VS. THE VAMPIRE HORDE. But as subsequent drafts were written, the focus of the story moved to tell a more unique origin story of Earthbound vampires. The influence of PREDATOR, UNDERWORLD, BLADE, QUEEN OF THE DAMNED, BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, ANGEL and even STAR WARS can be felt in the story.”
Scheduled for a 44-day shoot and budgeted at “less than $5 million” (according to Cannon), the film will sport makeup FX, props and design provided by Bones and Such Productions. Director Ray says of his visual approach, “Comic books have been my greatest influence. I had a collection of over 10,000 at one time. They are like a motion pictures in stills. The best artists always used a lot of shadows, much like the best cinematographers.” Citing the look of 1997’s THE RELIC as an example, Ray says of the film’s director, “Peter Hyams is in a class by himself when it comes to creating that kind of light-and-shadow look.” Regarding the challenges of applying such a visual style to an action/horror film, the filmmaker says, “[The only problem] is when you make it gory in the dark, no one will see it—so you have to create the right shadows with the right color. That blue-green-gray splashed with lots of deep blood-red jumps off the screen at you.”
Aiming for an eventual theatrical release, SACRED BLOODS, according to the publicist, is “the most ambitious independent action movie ever brought to production.” Visit the movie’s official site here for more info.