A Chat With Noah Segan, Writer, Director, Star Of ‘Blood Relatives’

What can I say about Noah Segan? This man is a freaking national treasure. Already a talented actor, Noah can now add feature film director to his ever-growing list of accomplishments with his feature length directorial debut, Blood Relatives. I love vampire movies, and I’m happy to add Blood Relatives to my list of solid and entertaining favorites. It’s funny, it’s slick, and it features one hell of a beautiful Barracuda.

Written and directed by and starring Noah, Blood Relatives (per IMDb) is about “A vampire’s loner lifestyle is thrown into disarray when a teenager shows up claiming to be his daughter, and she’s got the fangs to prove it. On a road trip across America’s blacktops, they decide how to sink their teeth into family life.”

To celebrate the film being released exclusively on Shudder on November 22, 2022, I chatted with Noah via phone, and we discussed the impeccable casting, where he got such a sweet car, horror movies, and more!

PopHorror: I watched Blood Relatives the other day, and I absolutely loved it. I’m a huge fan, so I’m super honored to speak with you today.

Noah Segan: Aw, shucks. Thank you so much.

PopHorror: I also want to say congratulations on your first feature film directorial debut.

Noah Segan: Thank you!

PopHorror: What inspired the story and how did the project come about?

Noah Segan: Well, I have been working in the movie business for a few years, almost 20. And I have spent a lot of that time just thinking I was a really cool badass guy. I wear leather jackets, and I go to movie premieres and film festivals, and I go out and stay out all night, and wear sunglasses, and slick my hair back. Just all the cool guy stuff, right? And please notate in your piece that I’m being as sarcastic as I can, because then I became a dad.

All of a sudden, my life looked a lot different and it sometimes was really scary. Even to this day sometimes, it’s really scary. It’s also filled with joy. As much anxiety as I have, I have this uncontrollable urge to take care of my kids, my family, and my wife. So thinking about my lifestyle then, and my lifestyle now, my urges, I thought about vampires and how they kind of exist or subsist often, and I wanted to tell a story about that.

PopHorror: Congratulations on becoming a dad! When watching this, we were wondering if this was your response to becoming a father.

Noah Segan: At the end of the day, it’s really all the movie is about this journey that I will probably be on for the rest of my life. Which again, to speak to the vampire thing, we all think that we know what our life is like. We all think at some point that we are comfortable, or at least we know how uncomfortable it’s going to get, and then all of a sudden, we get thrown something new. That’s probably the scariest thing for a vampire who’s going to live forever, who feels they know exactly what the deal is.

PopHorror: The chemistry between your character and Victoria Moroles is so spot on. What was your casting process like?

Noah Segan: The casting process was as if the celestial heavens had opened up, and then magically like an episode of Star Trek, Victoria just materialized in front of the camera. We were so incredibly lucky. The short version of it is that Josh Ruben had worked with Vic for a day on Plan B, which is an incredible movie Natalie Morales made and is sort of a two-hander between two teen girls off on a trip looking for a Plan B pill. It’s very funny, and it’s very smart, and it’s incredibly precocious on the part of the two actors, Vic being one of them. And Josh did a day on it as an actor, and was like, “Noah, you’ve got to meet Victoria. I really think you guys are going to connect.” And I thought, “Man, you worked with her for one day? Yeah, the movie’s incredible. I watched the movie, and I watched a bunch of her other work, and I agreed she’s an incredible actor. But how can you vibe with this, man?”

It’s the middle of the pandemic and so it’s all over the phone and Zoom, but Vic and I started talking, and I was like, “ Oh my gosh, you’re absolutely right.” This is a person who not only obviously has the skills because I had seen her work, but also had the attitude of a master. And when I say that I don’t mean in an egotistical way, I mean in a way that when you are able to be around someone who is so completely in control of their instrument, they’re able to take everything in and process it, and then come up with a consistent take, something that is unwavering. And then of course you talk and you make adjustments. Sometimes a director can give direction, and the ability of the control over the instrument allows them to make these small, almost imperceivable adjustments that are perfect.

Noah Segan and Victoria Moroles in Blood Relatives

On set, that’s so valuable when it’s the person carrying the film, and you’re acting opposite them and you kind of need that comfort and that confidence, and you get into the editing room, and you realize, holy cow! You’re always doing something good. Even when you’re sitting there reacting to something, you’re in full control, and you don’t make a big deal out of it, you just do it. Because you know how to do it. You’ve ascended. You’ve put in the time and the work and you have the talent, and it’s all been honed to get there. You start discovering stuff like parts of the movie where she’s doing a bad dad impression of me, the way that my own kids do! The way like my own kids troll me. She was doing it. And so you’re most of the way through the process trying to put the movie together after you’ve shot it, and it’s like you’re getting gifts from Vic after the fact.

PopHorror: That’s so cool! They just scheduled me to speak with her next week and I’m really excited to speak with her too. This is the first thing I’ve seen her in and I thought she was amazing. Now I’m going to go search out the rest of her stuff.

Noah Segan: Search out the rest of her stuff, but I’ve got to tell ya. I mean, I feel really, really bad for all of the other filmmakers and showrunners out there because there is absolutely no way that she is going to be able to accommodate all of the people who need to work with her. And it goes beyond just the obvious, where you talk to her, you meet with her, and you’re like, oh yeah. You’ve got the movie star thing where it’s just like pure charisma and if you asked me for $20, I would just give it to you happily. Dude, do you want me to wash your car? Like whatever the thing is that makes somebody that kind of magnetic personality, but the fact that she has invested her life into her craft and has done so with such a respect and modesty really makes everybody else around her so comfortable and so warm and feel so confident.

Victoria Moroles in Blood Relatives.

PopHorror: I can’t wait to speak with her. I have to ask you, where did you find that sweet Barracuda?

Noah Segan: Well, I found it in my garage. That’s where I found it. Another kind of, “Family is not always the people that we think are our family” kind of story. When I came out to LA, I had dropped out of high school. I never went to college. I knew I wanted to work in the movie business. There was a friend of the family who was a cameraman. His name was Tom Richmond, and he shot some of the most seminal stuff from the 80s and 90s. He shot everything from Chopping Mall to Alex Cox movies to the Jeremy video for Pearl Jam to Lisa Loeb’s video for Stay.

PopHorror: Wow!

Noah Segan: The guy, for decades, was just the eyes of a generation, to be frank. He shot Killing Zoe, he shot Love and a .45, Slums of Beverly Hills. Just really seminal stuff. He was incredibly kind to me and he let me be his assistant. He rented me an old room in his old house in Venice. He had this Barracuda that he had bought from an actual little old lady in Pasadena. The joke is true. He got his car from this little old lady in Pasadena, and he drove it. He didn’t baby it. It’s not a show car. It was like his car, and he loved it. It very much became part of him. He found so much joy in it, and those of us who were included in his family. He never had kids, but he had a very big extended family of people he chose. And we all were very grateful for that. About 10 years ago, he moved to New York to retire and has since unfortunately passed away. But he taught at NYU and SVA and left a great legacy, and part of that was when he left town and giving me the pink slip to the Barracuda. It’s been with me ever since.

PopHorror: Wow! That is amazing. What an incredible story and memory. What is up next for you, Noah?

Noah Segan: Well, I don’t know. I’ve got to pick my kid up from kindergarten and figure out what we’re doing for dinner. There’s no competition whatsoever, but I have a very small role in another film that comes out the same week as mine called Glass Onion, that I think will be hopefully very entertaining. So that will be in theaters over Thanksgiving and next month on Netflix. And hopefully just continuing to make films with my friends. That’s what it really comes down to. I realized early on—on the first movie I was in, Brick—when you’re working with people that you love, it is the most pleasurable thing on Earth, and it’s family. I just want to be with my family, whether I’m with my family here at home, or I’m dragging to a movie set to be with my movie families. That’s all I want to do.

PopHorror: That is the most amazing thing I’ve ever heard. I love when we see you pop up in movies. I have to say that I loved you as Adrian in All About Evil. It was just screened at our local theater with Peaches Christ here, and that is one of your best roles.

Noah Segan: Well, thank you so much! To that end, Tom Richmond shot All About Evil. The guy who I was telling you about who gave me the Barracuda, he was the cameraman on All About Evil. So it just goes to show you it’s a small world when your family is big. That’s sort of the sentiment that I was really trying to stress with Blood Relatives. Families look like everyone, and we should endeavor to make them bigger, not smaller. The All About Evil family is a great example of that.

PopHorror: I can’t wait for the movie to come and more people to see it. One last question for you today. What is your favorite scary movie?

Noah Segan: Oh, what is my favorite? Spooky movie or scary movie?

PopHorror: People interpret it however they want to when answering it. I’m really asking for your favorite horror movie, but being the Scream nerd that I am, I like to phrase it as scary movie.

Noah Segan: Oh, boy. Wow, it’s such a tough question. There are movies that really terrify me. Edward Scissorhands is one of the scariest movies I’ve ever seen, and to this day, I feel like I can’t revisit it. This idea of this monster having been created for comfort, and then be left unfinished, touching on the true nature of the Frankenstein story but making it about modern day divisiveness and hate. That really, really touched on me. As far as a more conventional horror movie, I could talk about Near Dark all day long. I could talk about Trouble Every Day all day long. I’m giving you a lot of answers here because it’s so tough to pick a favorite scary movie.

Thank you so much, Noah, for taking the time to speak with us. You can sink your fangs into Blood Relatives on November 22, 2022, exclusively on Shudder.

About Tiffany Blem

Horror lover, book worm, foodie, dog mommy.

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