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In The Halls Of Dark Horse Indie
An Interview with Chris Tongue

Don't you wish this was YOUR office?
Chris Tongue looks for reading material.
Back in February at WonderCon, we got invited to a press conference announcing "Dark Horse Indie," an independent film production company formed by combining Dark Horse Entertainment with Image Entertainment. Their first big "find" was Monarch of the Moon, a faux 40's film serial they debuted two weeks later at the New York Comic Convention. And yes, we knew it wasn't real at the time.

At Comic-Con, Dark Horse Indie held a panel with scenes and discussion about a couple more of their films, Splinter and Driftwood, interesting small films with two things in common: Dark Horse and Diamond Dallas Page.

So we had to sit down with Dark Horse Indie executive Chris Tongue, who gave us the lowdown on the company's slate, starting with a long-rumored film that should get fanboys drooling now...My Name Is Bruce...

Derek McCaw: Can you talk about the Bruce Campbell movie?

Chris Tongue: I can talk about the Bruce movie. I don't know how much you know, but it's Bruce Campbell starring as Bruce Campbell directed by Bruce Campbell and co-written by Bruce Campbell and Mark Verheiden.

The story is a small town being terrorized by zombie monsters figure that the only person who can save them is Bruce Campbell. So they kidnap him off the set of his latest B-horror movie and force him to do just that.

At first he thinks it's this great publicity gag put on by his agent, played by Ted Raimi. One of the many characters Ted plays in the film.

Derek McCaw: Ah, so Ted gets multiple roles…

Can Bruce Campbell believably
portray Bruce Campbell?
Chris Tongue: Oh, yeah. Just like Evil Dead. We've got the same composer from all those movies, too, Joe LoDuca. We'd actually been up in the air between Bear McCreary, who does Battlestar, and Joe.

Derek McCaw: But Joe's got the Evil Dead cred…

Chris Tongue: He has the pedigree.

Derek McCaw: So that just wrapped.

Chris Tongue: That just wrapped. We shot that in Medford, Oregon.

Derek McCaw: I once bought a leather coat in Medford.

Chris Tongue: Ahhh…

Derek McCaw: Yes, the summer that I spent in Ashland.

Chris Tongue: You were there for the Shakespeare Festival?

Derek McCaw: Well, I wasn't in the festival, but I had a friend who was.

Chris Tongue: I've never actually been to that but I've heard it's quite a draw.

Derek McCaw; Sometimes it's really cool, sometimes it's really horrid. As any great artistic endeavor can be…

Chris Tongue: Well, I like to think that our movie is both.

Derek McCaw: How did Bruce approach Dark Horse with that?

Proof of the relationship.
Chris Tongue: We've been friends with Bruce for a while. Dark Horse just did the comic book adaptation of Man With The Screaming Brain. Mike Richardson was on set for Army of Darkness hanging out with Bruce's dad while there were like eight Bruce Campbells running around.

It's a relationship that we've had for quite some time.

We said, "hey, Bruce, you want to direct something for us?" and he said, "sure, here's a great idea…" And we brought Mark Verheiden on to write it, who is another relationship that we've had for a long time.

Derek McCaw: Now, we're in the offices of Dark Horse Entertainment, but My Name Is Bruce will come out under the Dark Horse Indie label…

Chris Tongue: …which is our partnership with Image Entertainment, who are a huge DVD distributor.

Derek McCaw: Okay, so how did that come about? Why create Dark Horse Indie, and how active is it?

Chris Tongue: We've got three films in the can, done. And Bruce just wrapped yesterday. The straight Dark Horse Entertainment label is what we do our larger films through. The Mask, Hellboy, AvP, that sort of thing.

Dark Horse Indie is independent level budgets, low, low, low million dollars for these things that Image puts up directly. Basically, it makes us into our own mini-studio, so we don't have to deal with notes from tens of executives. It's not art by committee; it's what we want to do.

Derek McCaw: It will be much more directly in touch with what you think the fans will respond to.

Chris Tongue: Exactly. Which is really more in touch with the original Dark Horse philosophy - letting the creators do their thing.

Part Two: Monarch of the Moon, why Dark Horse Indie irritated Aint It Cool News, Splinter and Driftwood...

Derek McCaw

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