Jaysen Buterin’s desire to “kill all the clowns” in his new film Kill Giggles has been a long time coming. In fact, it all began back in the 80s with Poltergeist and that damned clown marionette puppet.
It left him with a crippling case of coulrophobia and a desire for revenge.
“Having a baby boy, I knew it was a matter of time before there was a birthday party and a clown would be there,” he told iHorror in a recent interview. “I figured I could confront the coulrophobia or lock myself in the car and cry in privacy. I went with the former and decided to kill all the clowns. It’s like cinematic catharsis.”
So he locked himself away and began a script for Kill Giggles that would ultimately top out at around 110 pages of thrilling, clown-killing madness though honestly he’s a little surprised that no one had thought of it before though he does have a theory.
“It seemed like a no-brainer but Hollywood and Blumhouse and all those places are busy making reboots and remakes and revisions of things that came out five years ago or ten years ago,” he said. “’Let’s remake the Grudge again!’ No, let’s do an original story like the ones that are out there on the festival circuit in places like Nightmares Film Festival. Go give those movies a fraction of the budget you’ll throw at a reboot.”
Still, he’s proud of his idea and the way that it has come into being with a cast filled with genre icons like Judith O’Dea (Night of the Living Dead), Vernon Wells (Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior), and Felissa Rose (Sleepaway Camp) as well as newer faces like Michael Ray Williams (Knob Goblins) and Ellie Church (Skeletons in the Closet). In fact he’s still pinching himself.
With his cast in place, Buterin went to work, filming the project in a total of 19 working days despite a hiccup or two along the way.
“We showed up on a Monday to do set dressing at a location we had secured so we could shoot on the following Thursday,” the director said, “and we walked in and the entire interior of the place was demolished. Walls were down. There was a pile of rubble in the floor. We called the owner and he was like, ‘Oh yeah, I had a demo crew come in.'”
Fortunately the location was a strip mall and with a quick move down the row of storefronts, they were able to set up their clown college setting in a former Republican Party headquarters.
At the end of the day and with a rough-cut ready for further fine-tuning, Buterin is ecstatic about what he’s created with his cast and crew. Kill Giggles is a unique thriller with horror accents that, he hopes, will appeal to fans of both.
So, without further ado, check out the first trailer for Kill Giggles below and look for its world premiere in 2020 as it makes its way onto the film festival circuit!