Rusty Nail returns this week in Joy Ride 3 and we caught up with the movie's writer / director, Declan O'Brien, in the latest installment of our Q&A series. In this feature, Declan O'Brien tells us about working with Ken Kirzinger, the challenge of filming stunts centered around a moving truck, and his favorite moment on set:

Thanks for taking the time to talk with us, Declan. As a horror fan, what did you love about the first Joy Ride movies and Rusty Nail that made you want to take on a new entry in the series?

I’ve been a longtime fan of John Dahl’s work and of course J.J. Abrams so the opportunity to expand on their work was a real pleasure for me. I loved the idea of a killer truck driver with a warped sense of justice. It will make you think twice about cutting off an eighteen wheeler on the highway.

Being the movie's writer and director, we'd imagine you had plenty of freedom in terms of the direction this movie would take. From the beginning, what did you set out to accomplish with this movie? How can our readers expect this to compare / differ from the first two?

I wanted to make Rusty’s truck to be a character in this film. The truck itself seems like a killer in the film and all of the deaths are truck related. There is also a great deal of car and truck road action in this film that I think sets it apart.

Ken Kirzinger takes on the role of Rusty Nail in Joy Ride 3. Why was the perfect for the role and can you tell our readers about your time with him on set?

Ken did a great job bringing Rusty to life. He was a great deal of fun to work with and was a real pro. Ken has a long stunt career and I’ve been known to blow up a thing or two on film so we had a pretty good short hand when it came to killing it.

It's tough enough to deal with stunts between two people, but we'd image that a moving truck adds a whole new level of complexity. What was the biggest challenge you faced when filming some of these scenes?

That’s an understatement! I had 20 ton 18 wheeler, an SUV and a Subaru WRX playing chicken on a highway. I shot the day truck action sequences with a Russian Arm which is essentially a Mercedes SUV with a crane on it. It’s a great tool, but I only had three days to shoot the entire daytime truck/car/suv action sequences and that compressed time frame was very challenging. I did a lot of pre-vis work to make the most of the time when we were actually playing with the big toys.

Can you tell our readers about a favorite on-set moment or memory you have during the making of Joy Ride 3?

I would say my favorite moment on this show was the spectacular SUV crash that Daniel Skene did. His father Rick Skene was the stunt coordinator and was driving Rusty’s truck. I was in the camera car ahead of them. We planned this stunt for weeks together, perfectly mapping out camera locations, car trajectories etc. all with safety first and foremost in our minds. We took our time that night and made sure everything was right before we shot. We even took a couple of practice runs at it for speed. Then when the stunt happened we nailed it for every camera angle and Daniel climbed out of the SUV and dusted himself off like nothing happened, well that was the best night of shooting.

Is this the end for you and Rusty Nail or would you be interested in returning to this series for another installment?

I’d hitch a ride with Rusty again.

Do you have any other horror projects in the works that you can tell our readers about?

If I told you, I’d have to kill you.