Earlier this year, the fantastic In Search of Darkness documentary was released by Creator VC, chronicling the horror boom of the 1980s.
In this four-hour-plus documentary it felt like everything was covered, but little did we know this was just the beginning.
Bloody Flicks caught up with Producer Robin Block to discuss the recently announced In Search of Darkness Part II, which will delve deeper into the decade horror fans love the most.
Given the response to In Search of Darkness, was there always a possibility of a follow-up?
Yes! There is so much fantastic material to uncover that we knew from the beginning that we wanted to do more. Even with our original 270-minute runtime, many films didn’t make the final cut that we would have loved to feature. We’ve learnt so much since we first started that we’re in a position to offer our customer base an incredible, unique and immersive experience.
Roughly how much footage was filmed for the original documentary?
A conservative estimate would be 60-75 hours
What films would you have liked to have covered which didn’t make the final cut?
My personal choice is Vamp (1986). I adore that movie and still remember watching and loving it for the first time when I was 12 years old. Thankfully it will be covered in In Search of Darkness: Part II
In terms of editing the project together, how did you determine a definitive run time?
Determining runtime is down to several factors, including budget constraints, scheduled release dates, and the storage limits of Blu-Ray and DVD media. We never intended to have a runtime of 270 minutes, but that was the shortest runtime we could deliver and still offer a definitive experience.
What can fans expect for In Search of Darkness II?
We’re developing an entirely new and immersive experience for fans of ’80s horror and want to make history. Our work is ‘by the fans, for the fans’ and is essentially fandom creating content for itself. In Search of Darkness: Part II will be jammed packed full of new interviews with icons of ’80s horror, unseen footage and a deep dive into a unique selection of topics and movies.
We’re introducing the fastest-growing horror community in the world. Our In Search of Darkness community Discord has received thousands of sign-ups, and we’re enabling ’80s horror fans to come together to celebrate this remarkable era. It’s exclusively for backers and customers of our documentary and we aim is to extend the experience indefinitely. We’re offering a programme of exclusive activities such as live Q&A’s with special guests, bi-weekly watch parties and hosted discussions all taking place in a moderated and safe online environment. We launched our current season of scheduled Watch Parties yesterday with Re-animator (1985) hosted by Jeffrey Combs! It was a huge success, and we have so much more in the pipeline. I’m so excited about the platform because in these uncertain times; it’s a source of comfort for many people. We aim to help our customers build life-long friendships by bringing fans together around a shared love of ’80s horror. It’s all about finding your tribe, and if that’s you, welcome.
How stressful are the crowdfunding campaigns for you?
Hugely stressful, but it’s the right type of stress the kind that strengthens your resolve and builds character. Crowdfunding is a full-contact sport and not for the fainthearted. Our campaigns are always an adrenalin-fuelled few weeks but are hugely rewarding. Crowdfunding is an incredible tool for independent creators as it’s one of the world’s last meritocracy’s; you get what you deserve. From a creative perspective, it’s liberating. No studio would have made In Search of Darkness as a four-plus hour documentary. Still, because we have a 1-1 relationship with our backers, we are continually engaging and can learn quickly about how best to serve them. As creators, we’re free to create unhindered.
How do you determine the perks of this sort of campaign?
We start by working out what we think will get backers excited and what makes sense from a manufacturing/fulfilment perspective. Now that we’re fortunate enough to have garnered a significant audience, we’re getting more data-centric about choosing the best reward tiers, but there’s still an art to it.
Although widely considered a lesser decade for horror, would you ever consider exploring the 90s in a future documentary?
Yes! Development of our ’90s horror documentary begins next year. Watch this space 😉
From the feedback you have received, is there one film that people have discovered or re-discovered most because of In Search of Darkness?
Not one in particular as it’s all subjective but so many people are posting online saying that they discovered new movies because of In Search of Darkness. It’s a great feeling!
With the current In Search of Tomorrow campaign going, is it difficult to strike a happy balance between these projects?
In Search of Tomorrow was a phenomenal Kickstarter campaign and is now the fourth highest-grossing crowdfunded documentary in history. Maintaining focus is mission-critical, but both projects are at very different stages which is how we’re able to execute on both.
What was the shortest time you were given for an interview for In Search of Darkness?
I honestly can’t remember the shortest, but thankfully we had enough time for deep dives with most of our contributors.
You have spoken previously about issues with agents regarding contacting actors/directors, do you feel this is an issue that should be addressed so projects like yours can be made in the future?
Crowdfunding has a poor reputation as some projects (despite the best intentions by creators) never get realised. That creates risk in the eyes of the establishment, but as we’ve already delivered two critically acclaimed documentaries and are the worlds leading crowdfunded production company, it’s getting easier. We hope our work has opened doors for other independent creators to realise their ambitions.
Keep up to date with In Search of Darkness Part II