With its UK premiere taking place this weekend at the Soho Horror Film Festival: Pride Edition, we caught up with writer/director Taylor King to talk about the new horror-comedy Super Hot.
Tell us about the genesis of Super Hot?
I first read genius and I thought to myself “Well, I don’t know if about that.. Oh! Genesis! Yes, humbled by dyslexia once again!” The genesis of Super Hot came from a conversation with my father and producing partner, Sean King, about the classic horror movie monster characters in the public domain. After the recently failed “Dark Universe” we conjured the idea of a series of films that introduced these classic characters in our own style emulating the films we had both grown up with. Super Hot, being the first of the series, is our take on introducing Dracula & Van Helsing in a John Hughes/Kevin Smith film revolving around a group of teens.
Are you a fan of vampire films, if so, what are your favorites?
I’ve always been a fan of vampire films, specifically Bela Lugosi’s portrayal of the character. Whether it be Gary Oldman, Christopher Lee, or even Frank Langella, the character Dracula seemed like a daunting task to not only write in a way that hadn’t been done before but cast as well. I really like how we introduce our Dracula and I’m excited for people to see where it goes.
What do you think it is about vampire films that are inherently queer?
There’s an unapologetic sexuality in vampire films and literature that has always been there. Carmilla by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, published in 1871 almost 30 years before Bram Stroker’s Dracula, is a queer vampire story that we drew a lot of inspiration from.
How did you blend the horror and comedy elements?
Super Hot is inherently more of a comedy than a horror film. It was important for us to make Super Hot feel like the films we were trying to emulate while at the same time having the antagonists from classic horror.
Tell us about the filmmaking process, what was a typical day on-set like for Super Hot?
Super Hot was a very interesting filmmaking process and is very well documented on our New Zealand Son Films Youtube Channel. We shot Super Hot in the middle of the pandemic in North Carolina. Almost all the actors stayed in the house featured in the film which made the whole experience feel like summer camp. More so than any film we’ve ever done, the cast immediately became friends. I’m very nostalgic about filming Super Hot, I’ve never experienced anything like it. A typical day on set would start with everyone waking up and making their way downstairs, eating breakfast or lunch together, and hanging out. In the afternoon we would all rehearse the scenes we’d be filming that night before dinner. As soon as it got dark we would film.
Beyond the festival circuit is there a streaming debut or physical media on the horizon for the film?
You can watch Super Hot right now on Amazon Prime Video. We plan on having a physical release in the near future.
Summaries Super Hot in 3 words?
Super hot in three words: Funny, Nerdy, Surprising.
Super Hot plays as part of the Soho Horror Film Festival: Pride Edition 2022.