On the third day of Film4 FrightFest, special effects maestro-turned-director Greg Nicotero of KNB Effects was presented with the inaugural Variety Award by Simon Pegg to acknowledge his immense contribution to horror.
I managed to chat to both Simon and Greg for a couple of minutes to discuss the award and what it means to return to FrightFest.
GREG NICOTERO: Nice shirt!
BRITGEEK: Oh, thanks! [laughs] I'm Adam from Ain't It Cool.
SIMON PEGG: Hi, mate, how are you?
GN: Oh hey! How are you?
BG: I'm good, thanks, how are you?
GN: Good, good.
SP: Hello, nice to meet you, I do the weird handshake as well.
BG: Yeah, it's fashionable I hear. So, welcome back to FrightFest.
GN: Thank you.
SP: Yeah, thank you very much, it's nice to be here.
BG: So how does it feel, Greg, to be presented with this award?
GN: It's pretty exciting, it's amazing. You know, I feel like I should go on and on talking about the stuff I've done, but what I love is when someone asks me one question and it just reminds me of a great story I haven't talked about for ten years.
BG: Yeah [laughs].
GN: So I think it's just fun to reminisce about stuff like that in my advanced age.
GN: Having fun here makes a big difference. It's made a big difference to me because it's made me comfortable and made me funnier. It's made me funnier.
SP: Bless you. You complete me.
BG: And how does it feel to be presenting the award?
SP: It's lovely, I feel very honoured to do it. Yeah, Greg's my friend but I'm also a fan and I'm always endlessly impressed by his work, so to be able to come out and have the opportunity to give him the award is a real treat, you know? I'm proud of the guy.
BG: What are your thoughts on FrightFest?
GN: I've been here before. I was here with George Romero when LAND OF THE DEAD premiered, so the opportunity come back to the UK, I mean I love it here. I was here for Simon's wedding and Nick [Frost's] wedding, this is the first time I've been here in a while when someone didn't get married, so someone might have to get married tonight to complete the trilogy. But what's funny, and I know that Simon can attest to it too, is that, when you're working, you're so focused, you're in a bubble, and you can step out of it for a day or two and have an opportunity to be exposed to what other film-makers are doing. It is inspirational, it makes you really remember why you do it and it's great. I love that opportunity because working on THE WALKING DEAD is seven months of shooting, so to step away from zombies for a couple of minutes and see what future film-makers are working on and the new movies that people will be talking about, it's inspiring and I always believe that European cinema influences US cinema. There are so many movies that are made here and all of the sudden it's the American remake of that movie. Thank god they never did an American remake of SHAUN OF THE DEAD.
SP: They nearly did.
SP: Bill Hader once said that, oh, that's another story [laughs].
BG: Thanks a lot, nice to meet you.
SP: Very good.
GN: Take care.
BG: Have another weird handshake.
GN: Oh no, I like that, I'm gonna start doing that.
Many thanks to both Simon and Greg for their time.
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