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Florian Frerichs discusses Deathcember segment ‘X-Mas on Fire’

Ahead of its UK premiere at Grimmfest Xmas Horror Nights next month, we caught up with director Florian Frerichs to discuss his segment X-Mas on Fire.

Tell us how you got involved with Deathcember?
I have been friends with one of the producers Frank Vogt ever since I started making films. He and his company Magna Mana in Frankfurt were among my very first supporters. Actually, I might have been among the first ones to be asked to participate in Deathcember.

What can you tell us about your segment X-Mas on Fire?
It is a politically incorrect and humorous take on gangster flicks with a surprising twist – and a clear nod to 80s and 90s action flicks. And it has a lot of Christmas spirit.

Did you take any influence from Quentin Tarantino for this film?
Of course. There’s a Reservoir Dogs like situation in the film. But it is called X-Mas on fire, because Reservoir Dogs was inspired by a pretty cool thriller from Hong Kong called City on Fire. But even though my film has elements of an homage, I think it can walk on its own feet. It has a pretty nice message: „Don’t judge a book by its cover“.

Tell us about the casting process for X-Mas on Fire?
To be perfectly honest, they are all family and friends. The lead character Mr. Handsome is portrayed by Steven de Souza, who wrote flicks like Die Hard, Running Man, 48 Hours and many other big Hollywood classics. We have been friends for a while and when I asked him if he wanted to start a new career as an actor and shoot a little movie in Berlin, he immediately booked the cheapest LAX-BER flight available.

I know you have an extended version of the film, but have you considered making it a feature?
That would be lovely! I have been busy with other projects lately, but who knows – maybe I can talk Steve into writing a first draft for a feature pro bono.

UK audiences will finally get to see Deathcember early next month at Grimmfest Xmas Horror Nights, what can they expect?
Many ambitious short films with a lot of heart – and gore, of course.

Were there any limitations for the filming of X-Mas on Fire (other than perhaps the budget)?
We had an amazing team, amazing locations and amazing supporters who made almost everything possible for our shoot. Shortly before we started the weather in Berlin switched from Fall to Winter and it was pretty cold during the exterior shoots. The weather tried to give us limitations but thanks to many very smart team members, we were able to shoot around that.

How long did the shoot last for?
I had already forgotten and had to look it up in our shooting schedule – Three days!

Can you sum up X-Mas on Fire in 3 words?
YippeeKi Yay, Motherfucker!

Catch Deathcember at Grimmfest Xmas Horror Nights on Saturday 12th December 2020.

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