Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with a particularly good interview I was recently a part of with director Frank Darabont and KNB legend Greg Nicotero. We got together when they were both in Austin to premiere THE MIST, which Darabont adapted and directed, with Nicotero serving in his normal function as show-runner for KNB EFX as well as handling all the second unit directing. I go back a long time with Greg and I’ve been acquainted with Frank for a few years, so there was no shortage of conversation, but for the most part we stick to the topic at hand, although you will find some tangents below, especially towards the end. The thing was that I was only scheduled for 20 minutes and I ended up with over 40 due to the journalist following me running into traffic. So, we reach a point where we just start kind of bullshitting about movies and cigars. However, we do cover a lot of ground, including tons of stuff on THE MIST, Stephen King, FAHRENHEIT 451 and THE LONG WALK. This is one of my favorite interviews in recent memory. Hope you guys dig it! *Side note: There's a bit in this interview where we discuss the original scripted opening for THE MIST that gave a more solid origin for the mist itself. We don't really talk about it in specifics, but I wanted to give you a heads up in case it comes so out of left field as to be confusing.*
Quint: This is the first time that you have used a lot of heavy effects stuff, right? Did that trip you up at the end?
Frank Darabont: No, God no, nothing “tripped us up.” Everybody acquitted themselves gorgeously and that they met the schedules they had to meet was remarkable. On top of the achievement of what they did creatively, the fact that they were able to do it on the schedule and the budget that we had was quite amazing, so there was no trip up. It was just a horserace at the last moment.
Quint: I still haven’t seen it, because I didn’t want to go see it at that crappy place that they press screened it, but I’m seeing it tonight.
Frank Darabont: Apologies for that, I told them “screen it for the press at ALAMO! Don’t screen it at this crappy place.” They said “OK,” and then it happened at the crappy place anyways…
Quint: I’m looking forward to it tonight.
Frank Darabont: They only listen to me to a degree, which lately isn’t much.
Greg Nicotero: The problem is they think they know better.
Quint: Did they tell you that they moved it from the Ritz, though?
Frank Darabont: No, where’d they move it too?
Quint: They sent out an email last night to all of the ticket holders saying that there was something that they couldn’t move or something that they couldn’t deal with and so it’s now at the South Lamar. It’s a good theater though.
Frank Darabont: Is that a good theater?
Greg Nicotero: Oh yeah.
Quint: It’s not like the “breaking in” movie for the RITZ though, which is the only bummer, but…
Frank Darabont: That is a shame.
Greg Nicotero: It’s about ten minutes out of (down)town vs. 6th Street.
Quint: It’s cool though, since it’s a good theater. That’s where FANTASTIC FEST was and everything so it shouldn’t be…
Frank Darabont: As long as people get to see the moving in a good way and the projection is good and it sounds good and… I was actually thinking about this as I woke up this morning, this is actually our world premiere tonight. Yeah, we’ve had test screenings and we’ve had press screenings and blah blah blah, but this is the first time we are actually able to show the movie to the public in a finished form, where all of the effects are what they were intended to be and all of the sound is mixed and you’re not missing half of the sound and all of that.
Quint: This is the film that everybody will see?
Frank Darabont: This is the film that everybody will see, so tonight I guess is our world premiere, so how appropriate to do it in Austin? That’s kind of pleasing to me, because it’s a hotbed of fans and movie lovers.
Quint: There’s nothing like an Austin audience.
Frank Darabont: That’s really cool, I’m delighted by it.
Quint: You’re going to dig it. The way that the audience reacts is just… I’m helping the Alamo build their trailer reel beforehand, so…
Greg Nicotero: Oh good!
Quint: I think the first time I met you at Santa Barbra, one of the first things that we talked about was this movie, THE MIST.
Frank Darabont: Oh reallyh? I guess I’ve been talking about this movie for years, haven’t I?
Quint: It’s been so long.
Frank Darabont: Greg knows...
Quint: The road up until tonight has been very long, so what do you think kept the project from happening up until now?