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Q&A with Executive Producer Steve Niles of Remains on Chiller

Steve Niles is credited with bringing the graphic novels back to life. He has worked on major franchises such as Batman, and I Am Legend, and also created The Creeper and Simon Dark series for D.C. Comics. 30  Days of Night and the sequel Dark Days have been developed into major motion pictures. Niles has worked with Sam Raimi, John Carpenter and Rob Zombie. 30 Days of Night has now been turned into the Chiller original film Remamins, produced by Nils.

The film is set in the post-apocalyptic Reno, Nevada, and follows survivors of an accident that reduced most of the world’s population to zombies. The survivors take refuge in a vacant casino and fight a losing battle against the undead who have become smarter and more aggressive. The movie stars Grant Bowler (True Blood), Lance Reddick (Fringe, Oz, The Wire), Miko Hughes (Pet Sematary) and Tawny Cypress (Rescue Me). Remains is written by John Doolan and directed by Colin Theys; Andrew Gernhard and Zach O’Brien produce.

Niles took part in a Q&A to discuss the project. He talked about the popularity of the zombie genre. I think horror always reflects our general fears and anxiety levels in society today. The world is different, and right now we’re actually afraid of other people, disease, and being invaded, so what better ways to express our fears than having this zombie hoard that wants to eat humans. It comes to our friends, family and neighbors wanting to kill and eat us.

The zombies may be the most terrifying example of real horror, and with all the insanity in the world, it seems it could actually happen. For those who are truly afraid of the world, the zombies have become a form of therapy for confronting their fears.

Niles is excited to be a part of Chiller; he enjoys TV movies, and Dan Curtis who wrote The Night Stalker and Dark Shadows is one of his heroes. He said the people at Chiller are already like family, so being a part of Chiller was enough for him. He felt it was a wonderful place to premiere his TV movie Remains.

As Remains are being turned into a TV movie, Niles had to face a big challenge; there was a lack of budget to film the movie. He could imagine and do anything, but without the budget had to improvise. He turned to the film he calls “the greatest zombie movie of all time,” which had a budget of seventy thousand dollars and was shot on the weekends, Night of the Living Dead. Inspired by that classic film, he was able to get the scenes he wanted done effectively.

Niles not only enjoys zombies, but also mean nasty vampires that do not want to seduce you but strictly want blood. He has developed affection for vampires and believes there is more you can do with that particular monster, story-wise. Zombie stories are great for telling human stories, but vampires are great for both their human and monster aspect. Niles considers himself the “luckiest monster kid on earth” to be able to create the stories he loves, everything from vampires to Frankenstein.

Niles is happy with the way Remains turned out. You can watch the premiere of Remains on Friday, December 16 on Chiller.

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