Stuntman turned film director Mike Mayhall tells us about his directorial debut Jake’s Road. The unnerving horror-thriller, starring Eric Roberts, is now available on DVD and VOD.
You’re getting a lot of press online – and good press, too. How much do good reviews mean to you?
The reviews and the positive feedback have been great! I am so thankful. Even more that that those reviewing the film seem to really understand what I was going for as an artist.
But, to be honest, I stress over reviews way more than I should. Thankfully, everyone who has seen Jake’s Road really seems to like it. The idea behind that is the more good reviews, hopefully more people will see the film. And, ultimately that’s why I do this. To entertain.
Who is more important though: the critic or the consumer?
The consumer. Always. They are the reason we – the entertainer – exist.
Do you check into the forums and message boards to see what people are saying about the movie?
Sometimes … but I try to stay clear. It doesn’t matter if the review is good, bad or in the middle I want to talk to the people and ask them about the film. I think it’s my drive to learn and better myself or just discuss the art … but, there is no way for me to do that … so I stay clear.
Is it fair to say the movie isn’t a horror, isn’t a thriller… but is more a hybrid?
It’s a total hybrid. A love of the old horror movies, but set up as a thriller, with a bit of action thrown in for fun. It also, I think, challenges what horror is. Is it blood and guts or is it a moment where everything you loved is ripped away? In Jake’s Road I was exploring a bit of both. And, I think the audience will respond. Grab some popcorn and just enjoy.
What do you think separates your film from those of a similar ilk or with a similar storyline?
I really do believe it’s the dedication to the story and character. It’s a a good story. A simple one, but a good one. The actors were great and really nailed their characters. You really feel for the people in the story. When the killing starts you mourn for them. When the truth comes out it’s gut wrenching.
Are you originally from Louisiana, yourself?
I am. I really love filming here. Louisiana has a great tapestry to set a movie. Next year we are planning on making a Zombie Comedy. Should be great!