A new thriller that should be on your radar is A Dark Place from Christopher Piñero. It’s definitely a gem of a film that fans of the genre will dig. I recently got a chance to talk with Piñero about his career, the inspiration behind A Dark Place, upcoming projects and more.
A Dark Place is now available on Digitial, DVD, and Blu-Ray, so check it out now and stay tuned for our interview!
PopHorror – It’s great to talk with you, Christopher! How did you get involved in the filmmaking business?
Christopher Piñero – I started out as an actor. I was cast as the lead in a short and after going through that process, I soon realized that I wanted to be on the other side of the camera.
PopHorror – That’s awesome. What was the first film you ever made?
Christopher Piñero – In high school, I made a propaganda film about the effects of war. I used my dad’s video camera to shoot it. I put on a spaghetti strainer as a helmet and I told my classmate to get in the tree to get a high angle of me running across the yard. I directed him to shake the camera to make it feel real and I downloaded a war track off the internet and played it as he was shooting. I thought it was pretty creative, but I ended up getting a D and a lecture from my history teacher to take class more seriously.
PopHorror – That sounds pretty awesome to me. Creativity is always a plus if you ask me. Some of the films you’ve done fall under the horror/thriller genre. Is that a genre you enjoy and if so what is your favorite film from it?
Christopher Piñero – Yes, I love that genre. One of my favorite times of the year growing up was October because horror movies would be on every channel. Hitchcock and Fincher are two of my biggest inspirations, but I have to say, my favorite in the genre is Silence of the Lambs.
PopHorror – Hell yes! What inspired you to make A Dark Place?
Christopher Piñero – I had this reoccurring nightmare that I had committed a crime, and I was on the run from the police. It always took place after the crime so I never saw what I actually did in the dream, but I remember the feeling of fear I had afterward. I’d wake up in cold sweats and I thought if I could replicate that feeling in a film, an audience might respond to it.
PopHorror – That’s a really good idea and creative. Can you tell the readers what it’s about?
Christopher Piñero – It’s about a guy whose past mistakes continue to define him. He refuses to let go of those traumas, so when he discovers a secret, it sends him into a self-destructive spiral and he brings his two best friends down with him.
PopHorror – How did the casting process come about?
Christopher Piñero – I had worked with Jazlyn Yoder and Jay Eftimoski multiple times before so it was natural that they were a part of this. We brought on a casting director to fill out the rest of the cast. When I saw Luke Baines’ audition tape, I knew immediately that he was the person I needed to tell this story.
PopHorror – They were all great – incredible performances. It’s a pretty dark and intense film. Do you have any favorite scenes?
Christopher Piñero – The scene with Alex and his Mother always stands out for me. I thought Luke’s acting was so great in how restrained he was in the emotional beats. Another one of my favorites is the scene where Alex parks on the side of the road and soon after is approached by the cop.
PopHorror – Yes, both of those are amazing! What are your goals as a director?
Christopher Piñero – Everything I’ve done up to this point has been on micro budgets. The opportunity to tell stories on a bigger scale and have my movie in a wide theatrical release is something I’ve always dreamed of. I was also a huge comic book fan growing up, so getting a chance to direct a Marvel movie would be at the top of my list.
PopHorror – I hope you get too. You definitely have the talent and drive to do so! Any other upcoming projects?
Christopher Piñero – I’ve just completed my next script, Rosemont Forest, and I’ll be looking to shoot that next. It’s a coming of age thriller/horror film set in the nineties.
PopHorror – Well, I love the title and you just sold me by telling me it takes place in the nineties. I look forward to it!