The following interview with L. C. Cruell is courtesy of Denise Gossett and the Shriekfest Newsletter. Learn more here: Shriekfest

DG: What is your name and company URL?

LC: I’m L. C. Cruell and my website is: Cruell World

DG: What is your specialty … filmmaking or screenwriting?

LC: Screenwriting. Though, oddly, I have found myself directing lately too, especially some of my own shorts and things. Instead of writing to direct like most, I find myself directing to write. A rather unexpected twist.

DG: Oh, that is interesting! What are you currently working on?

LC: Oi! Ok, right now we are in the midst of production on “31,” a suspense-thriller webseries that I have written and, yes, am now directing, sheduled for completion in early 2011. It will be rolled out in 31-second episodes each day at the beginning of a, you guessed it, 31 day month.

I, along with award-winning writers Linda S. Scott and Diana Kemp, just signed a deal with MTP Worldwide on our feature script Mistresses of Horror, the first all-female-written horror anthology. They plan to create an entire franchise that will hopefully include everything from features to graphic novels.

I finished a new horror feature script, Lizzie (drawn from the legend of Lizzie Borden) and a new pilot, The Four, (4 losers discover they may be destined to become the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse) that I am just starting to find time to market.

I have shorts that are being filmed or are in pre-production by directors and producers in Atlanta, LA, the Carolinas, and overseas, with finished scripts for more waiting in the wings.

Oh and I had an idea for a reality show (yeah, really didn’t see that coming) and now there’s a producer running with it and talent attached.

And I may have a collection of short stories published next year, Cruell Tales or possibly Cruell Worlds.

I think that’s most of it. For now.

Crazy, I know, but in a good way.

DG: Wow! I’ve heard of busy, but this is crazy! Congrats girl! Have you been a finalist or winner in any festivals or competitions?

LC: Tons. Honestly. Every script I have written and submitted has become a contest/festival finalist or winner.

Mistresses of Horror, Blue Bloods, and The Guardians were all Shriekfest finalists. And the last script I submitted, Seekers was a Shriekfest Winner.

DG: That is very impressive! Why do you think the horror/scifi genres have such a large following?

LC: Because anything is possible! You can consider any question, explore any possibility! You can show different visions of what the future might be. Or dissect the darkest recesses of the human mind. Mess with the social order, screw around with the natural laws of the universe, anything. It is the one genre that is truly limitless in what its stories can be about and where they can go. It is the genre of “What if?” What could be better than that?

DG: Ooh, I love that answer! What do you love most about this business?

LC: Creating something greater than yourself. And working together with extremely talented, imaginative, artistic, committed, and totally off the wall crazy people to do so. Sharing perspectives, ideas, falling in love together with a concept or a project and building it block by block, breathing life into it, making it exist, then watching it take off into the world on it’s own.

DG: What do you dislike most about this business?

LC: The gatekeeping. The difficulty and time it takes not to master your craft or create your vision, but to luck, chance, and network your way to a place where people will actually look at your work. If screenplays could all go through the same vetting process where all were read and the best chosen no matter who they were by, where they lived, or who they knew, all movies could be incredible.

DG: Any advice you’d like to give to newbies?

LC: Believe in yourself. And if you don’t, learn to.

Do not believe it when people tell you that you cannot do something, or when they quote statistics to show how unlikely your chances of success will be.

Do not believe it when people tell you that you are too young or too old, or the wrong sex or race to be successful in a certain genre, or that you have to live in LA, or have a lot of money, or do things a certain way.

Believe and make your own way.

In this industry, at this time, believe me, you can do it.

DG: Wow…that is wonderful! Thank you! Anything else you’d like to say?

LC: I just look forward to meeting and working with even more talented people out there to make even more of my scripts come to life, become incredible projects, and, hopefully, intense, rare, unforgettable films.

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