Lofts can breathe new life into long-abandoned buildings, but in The Charnel House, a haunted space for slaughter should have remained uninhabited. Coming out in theaters and on VOD from Freestyle Digital Media on November 4th, The Charnel House looks to provide viewers with supernatural scares aplenty, and we caught up with director Craig Moss for our latest Q&A feature.

Thanks for taking the time to answer some questions for us, Craig. What attracted you to the story behind The Charnel House?

Craig Moss: There were so many elements of this screenplay that reminded me of some of the classic suspenseful/thriller/horror films from forty or fifty years ago. It was just a refreshing change of pace from some of the same old material I’ve read countless times. Our producer Sandra Siegal and writers Mani Isler and Chad Israel did an extraordinary job creating this interesting world with some well-developed and intriguing characters, not to mention a spectacular twist at the end.

Where did filming take place and what did that environment add aesthetically and atmospherically to your movie?

Craig Moss: We shot the film in Cleveland, Ohio. Yes, Cleveland… the place gets a bum rap, but I gotta say it was one of the better locations I’ve ever shot a movie. In and around the city has so many great looks from downtown, which looks like a smaller version of Chicago, to the outside rural areas complete with miles and miles of farmland. For The Charnel House, we utilized both looks, which really took the film to a whole new level aesthetically.

What was the shooting schedule like on this film?

Craig Moss: We had eighteen days to shoot the film, which consisted of three five-day work weeks and then three days our final week. Not a lot of time, but the nice thing about our film is that we were very contained when it came to locations and characters, which helped tremendously.

What types of horror can fans expect to experience while watching The Charnel House?

Craig Moss: There’s a lot of amazing suspenseful and terrifying stuff in this film. We were lucky enough to do multiple test screenings where audience members were literally shaking when they came out of the theater. I think that was the best compliment of all.

When you look back at your time on set, is there a particularly funny or memorable moment that stands out?

Craig Moss: We had a lot of good times on this film, which included our stunt coordinator Richard Fike hurling himself down one of the steepest stairwells I’ve come across to prove his stunt worthiness, but the most memorable moments were being able to work with my daughter, Makenzie, who plays Mia in the film. There’s one scene in particular with Callum Blue that just blew me away when we were shooting it, and to this day it still gives me the chills when I see it on screen.

Were there any films that inspired or influenced you while making The Charnel House?

Craig Moss: Yes, Shutter Island and The Shining (for obvious reasons).

Is this a world you would be willing to return to in a potential sequel?

Craig Moss: Absolutely, and that was the design going into this film, thoughtfully put together by our producer Sandra Siegal and the writers Mani and Chad.

With The Charnel House coming out on November 4th, what projects do you have on deck that you can tease, and where can our readers find you online?

Craig Moss: I’m prepping an action film entitled Social Security, starring Danny Trejo. The concept is basically is Die Hard in a retirement home, where Danny plays himself in the film. You can check it out at @SocialSmovie

  • Derek Anderson
    About the Author - Derek Anderson

    Raised on a steady diet of R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps books and Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Derek has been fascinated with fear since he first saw ForeverWare being used on an episode of Eerie, Indiana.

    When he’s not writing about horror as the Senior News Reporter for Daily Dead, Derek can be found daydreaming about the Santa Carla Boardwalk from The Lost Boys or reading Stephen King and Brian Keene novels.