Eamon Hardiman is a West Virginia based director that I only discovered a year ago. Since that time my respect for him has grew immensely. He has overcame so many obstacles to release the Porkchop trilogy which spawned the indie horror icon Porkchop. After discovering Hardiman’s films I quickly befriended him on Facebook so I could follow his career more closely.
Hardiman is a busy man as of late as he is currently working on his webseries entitled The Crawling Dead. He was nice enough to take time from his busy schedule so I want to thank him for that. The interview was actually conducted yesterday but I experienced computer problems and was not able to post it until today. So thank you Eamon and I apologize for taking so long to post this.
At what age did you realize you wanted to work in the film industry?
I had toyed around with cameras as a kid, doing little stop-motion videos but it probably wasn’t until college that I started shooting and editing and really got into things. I had discovered a website called B-Independent.com that was full of all these really cool indie filmmakers doing backyard and micro-budget stuff all the way up to Cinemax titty flicks and I started hanging out on those forums, chatting with the other directors and I realized I could tackle a feature. I was horribly mistaken.
What did you do before you started making films?
I did nothing in high school but read comic books and watch movies and miss a lot of school. I wound up so far behind by senior year that it was either repeat another year or get my GED and spend a year having fun before college. I took that route and wound up bouncing around between colleges and majors. I was a communications major, then an English major, and also at Marshall for a while as a journalism major. Matthew McConaughey was nowhere to be found so I returned to WVSU where I majored in English again until I realized I had no interest being an English teacher.
Well the horror community is very glad you chose to make films. Growing in West Virginia and living here my whole life I find it fascinating that another native has turned to film as a career. I notice a lot of people from the state really support you and your work. Do you ever get those that do not?
Actually, we really get very little support outside of our group of friends. Several local business owners have been amazingly supportive and kind to us but we’re usually on our own on these things. The WV Film Office will only help a film if A.) it’s not horror and B.) you have an insured production with a budget over $50,000. There are no resources or assistance in the state for microbudget films that are made for “profit.” (There is no profit to be had but they don’t care) We also have never had that many sales in state or many donations. Most of our sales and donations have come from other states, England, and Germany. I find it kind of shocking because I meet a lot of horror fans in WV but for whatever reason they aren’t aware of our stuff. But we go to Virginia and everyone knows who we are. It’s kind of disheartening, but we love the state and love showing off its beauty.
That’s shocking because the people I work with and some I met in college suggested your work to me and that is how I discovered you. That also gets me in to the next question. What are some of the other challenges you face being a West Virginia film maker?
Well I’m very thankful for those folks! That’s awesome! Challenges? Teeny tiny budgets that don’t let us pay our actors and crew. Luckily, we are able to get AMAZING volunteers to come in and bring these stories to life, but I would love to be able to pay them for their time and talents. We always set our sights high on budget but ultimately wind up having to cut corners, scenes, effects, sometimes even entire characters because we are trying to (in the case of The Crawling Dead), shoot a $50,000 movie for $1,500.
The Porkchop Trilogy is easily your most popular films and Porkchop has become somewhat of a horror icon. What inspired you to make the series?
I was a huge fan of Motel Hell and there’s that way too short scene with the pig head and chainsaw. I was talking with some friends and we figured that someone needed to make a movie that was entirely that and make it more of an iconic figure. I was a huge fan of 80s slasher films so I combined the two and came up with the outline for Porkchop 1.
Do you run in to fans of the series when you are at film festivals and cons? If you do, what is that like?
We do! It’s awesome! We have gone to several cons and festivals and had Pig Girl and Porkchop walk around in costume and people lose their damn minds! It’s amazing to see little kids run up to them….every time someone sees Pig Girl there’s a gasp and then like fifteen people rushing over to post for photos. I love it. No one knows who I am and that’s probably for the best. I get to hang back and watch people admire our monsters. I love to talk to people about the movies though, I wish it happened more often.
Speaking of Pig Girl. A lot of people responded very well to her. Any thoughts on doing her own film?
We have some plans in the works for that and have shot some footage but we’ve had a lack of success with the online fundraising which, for us at the moment, is the only way to make the movie. It requires a slightly higher budget than the others and I don’t think we would be able to raise it. I really want to make the movie though. It’s one of my “dream” pictures to make and one that I have been talking about doing since Porkchop 1.
What does the future for you and Razor Sharp look like?
The Crawling Dead this year and something next year. We’re so focused on this webseries right now that I don’t want to commit to anything until that’s done. We’ve got some screenings we’ll be scheduling and MAYBE attending some conventions but as for shooting at the moment, it’s entirely The Crawling Dead.
My final question and it is probably the hardest to answer. If you had to choose just one. What is your favorite horror flick?
favorite I guess is Night of the Creeps
Hardiman is still hard at work with The Crawling Dead releasing episodes as quickly as they become available. The episodes are released via youtube where the nudity and extreme gore is removed. However, those looking for the uncut version can pre-order the DVD and Bluray at crawlingdead.com. Head on over and secure your copy now!