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Richard Elfman       

Interview: Email Q/A with Richard Elfman, to celebrate the Re-Release of Forbidden Zone - with exclusive midnight screenings of the original uncut version at Landmark Theaters this April!

Igor: Thank you in advance Mr. Elfman, for taking time out of your busy schedule to take part in this e-mail interview. Horror-Web.com wishes you much success with the Re-Release of Forbidden Zone, and your future endeavors. Let the questions begin! :)

Igor What made you decide to re-release "Forbidden Zone"? Was it something you felt needed a second chance, a re birthing of sorts, or was it in answer to the fans screaming for more?
Richard Elfman Well, kind of both. It seems as though most of the people who have seen it over the years have done so with badly recorded bootlegged VHS's. I would rather they see it on a sparkling new 35mm print, the way King Fausto and Queen Doris intended. I would also like to reach a new audience of younger, and more rabid, screaming maniacs. The original group of fans are mostly dead now anyway - although having seen Forbidden Zone more than once re-programs the brain for latter ressurection as a zombie. I will have a whole audience of zombies!!

Igor Reviewers agree that this is either a "love it" or "hate it" type movie. What is your opinion about that?
Richard Elfman It ain't for everyone, that's for sure. Anal repressive types, child molesters, septic tank cleaners and Prozac prescribing psychiatrists have trouble with the film's relentless assault on banality. They cannot see that Life is Absurd at times. It threatens their grip on reality as well as their grip on their (and each other's) dicks.

On the other hand, those free spirits who can laugh and sing and dance and savour God's very mirth, can relax and have fun, and enjoy Forbidden Zone. I personally think that there is something for everyone in Forbidden Zone. The Passion of the 'Squeezit sequence' in the film's 'Queen's Revenge' number, for example, might be just the perfect follow-up to that Mel Gibson movie.

Igor Do you feel that anyone other than die hard Elfman fans will understand the full meaning of this film?
Richard Elfman I hope so. We've invested a lot of money in posters and stuff!

Igor Raised by two school teachers, we have two very creative brothers - where did this artistic blood come from? Is this something that secretly runs through the bloodline?
Richard Elfman You mean the Elfo Juice? Our father (R.I.P.) was a jazz trumpet player in the 30's. Mother became a novelist and playwright after her teaching career. Before that our family was pretty run of the mill struggling Jewish tradesmen, working their way out of Europe and on to the Titanic.

Igor You seem to enjoy what you do immensely, and are immersed in so many areas, are there other waters yet to be tested?
Richard Elfman Hmmnn... I can't think that far ahead. I love everything that I am doing. I want to direct more films, write more books, get killed in more B horror flicks, etc. etc.

Igor Which of your many hats do you prefer wearing: acting, directing, writing, percussion, boxing?
Richard Elfman I gave up boxing after my second nose job. Otherwise, I love it all, baby!

Igor You currently have two other movies and a book cooking. How are the movies "Trio" and "The Sixth Element" coming along? When can we expect to see more information about these?
Richard Elfman We are casting Trio, but it has kind of 6 leads and it is complicated, agents, lawyers, etc. The Sixth Element (not the final title, by the way) is more like Forbidden Zone, with another dimension and whacky musical numbers. Stay tooned to my website for more info.

Igor Your upcoming vampire novel, "The Schlimazl of Sebriem," is posted on your site, but with very little information. What more can you tell us about this? When can we expect to see this on shelves and from which publishing house?
Richard Elfman We've had offers from a few small presses. I need to find an illustrator... (been so damned busy, particularly as Film Bureau Chief for Buzzine Magazine). Again, stay tuned to my website. Schimazl a fun little vampire novel that I want to make into a film, eventually. My brother knows this amazing Romanian gypsy band to help play on the soundtrack.

Igor You are a very busy guy, when you have spare time, what do you do to wind down? What is a perfect relaxing evening in your world?
Richard Elfman I like to barbecue a gourmet dinner up on my deck, perched high the Hollywood hills. New Zealand rack of lamb or free range filet mingon, an array of fresh organic vegetables grilled to perfection over savory mesquite coals. Along with a fine bottle (or two) of well aged Bordeaux and my (not-so-well-aged) girlfriend Lauren, of course.

Even better, I like doing it at Danny and Bridget's Santa Barbara estate, overlooking the Pacific, because they have a great pool and romantic hot tub. Then a cigar, some Cognac and, naturally, a night of passionate love making.

And finally, snuggling towards slumber in the wee hours with another cigar, a double maduro robusto-robusto perhaps, night capping with a dryer Bas Armignac, and a classic B horror flick on the telly. Or the Three Stooges. Although a gentleman must be vigilant not to drop cigar ash on his true love's face as she dozes contentedly while he guffaws like a hyena over a particularly hilarious episode featuring Curly. Ah, yes. It is very important to relax in today's hectic fast-paced world.

Igor Do you enjoy working with your brother, keeping it in the family? Or do you find that you compete with each other?
Richard Elfman I love to work with Danny. If only he weren't so busy with that Spiderman 2 stuff this week! He's behind on the tunes he's doing for my own project!

Igor What accomplishment in the field are you most proud of? Can you and will you top that?
Richard Elfman That's a tough one. Although it has it's flaws and I didn't totally know what I was doing at the time, Forbidden Zone is still my favorite work. I plan to top it with something loonier, something more insane, though.

Igor What, if anything, do you wish you had done differently?
Richard Elfman Not spent a decade screwing around, throwing wild theatrical parties and such. (Actually, I don't entirely regret it...)

Igor And finally, what is the ONE thing that you would like to tell fans and aspiring artists a like?
Richard Elfman Don't succomb to "middle class suppression." Society likes us to fit in as cogs in the machine. Artists must break out of that. It ain't always easy. And go often to horror-web.com. It's a great mind bending site that I enjoy immensely!

Again, thank you for your time, and feel free to stop by and visit us anytime you would like!


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