Interview with The Barn’s Mitchell Musolino

Mitchell Musolino has a lot of things going for him. Although he’s only been acting professionally for four years, he’s already had roles in five films (two upcoming), a TV miniseries and a video game. Although born in 1991, this baby-faced actor can play characters much younger than his actual age, giving him an advantage in auditions. Mitchell is an affable, laid back guy with a quick and easy grin that can’t help but be contagious. When he’s not working, Mitchell spends his time hanging out with his best buddy, an English bulldog named Arthur. Recently, PopHorror had a chance to talk to Mitch and find out what he’s done, what he’s doing and where you’ll see him next.

PopHorror – Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us! Let’s start with an easy question: what inspired you to be an actor?

Mitchell Musolino – Throughout my entire childhood and adolescent years, my mom and I moved a lot. Always to a new town as well, so every school year I attended some where different, which made me the new kid. Because of this, it was hard for me to make friends and led to being bullied a lot. So when I got home, I would be really upset so I would just watch movies to take my mind off of things. I always lost myself in their story and it helped me deal with my problems better. My inspiration for acting came from this. Age six was the earliest I can remember having this thought, but I knew that I wanted to make movies to help people like they helped me.

PopHorror – Your most recent role was of Sam Daniels in The Barn. How did you get the part?

Mitchell Musolino – I had just moved back home to Pittsburgh from trying to make a career for myself in Boston. I heard about auditions for this feature length horror film and sent in my information for consideration. They sent me the audition sides for the characters of Josh and Russell, but after Justin had seen me in person and saw how I performed, he asked if I would read the sides for the lead character, Sam. A week later, they emailed me and asked if I would play Sam.

PopHorror – Tell our readers a bit about The Barn and who The Boogeyman, Hallowed Jack and the Candycorn Scarecrow are.Mitchell MusolinoThe Barn is about an old legend that occurred during a mining incident. It talked about how the miners stumbled upon demons. Over the years, it became more of a nursery rhyme (sort of like Bloody Mary or The Candyman) to scare kids from staying off of people’s property. If you were to perform a certain ritual, it would awake this evil and they’d take you. Sam and his pals decided to test it out (against Sam’s will) and the results were not what they had hoped. The monsters themselves are amazing. Justin came up with some completely original, catchy looking creatures. Each with their own strengths and abilities. His designs were incredible and scary. But basically it’s a trio of baddies, with a sole purpose and intent to kill and bring human flesh back to the devil as his Halloween treat.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4pc2yHzveU
PopHorror – Gruesome! What was filming like?

Mitchell Musolino – Filming this movie was a big challenge. What was thought was going to take up to two weeks, ended up taking over two years. Anything that could have went wrong during the process did go wrong. We had to work in 10 degree temperatures wearing t-shirts, we had to work around weather which was a hassle because if you’ve seen Pennsylvania weather, it’s so bipolar. One moment the sun is shining and the next, it’s raining. Long 14-16 hour shoot days were really common, so everyone was constantly tired. It was very hard, but we all believed in Justin’s vision and his passion in this story that it was so rewarding to have stuck it out.

PopHorror – Did you stay friends with any of your cast members?

Mitchell Musolino – Heck, yeah! We all grew pretty close during the filming of this. What you see as friendship on screen was real. The entire cast clicked so well with each other, and after we wrapped some went their own way, but we all still keep in touch!

PopHorrorThe Barn ended on a cliffhanger. Do you think there will be a sequel? Would you be interested in doing one if it’s announced?

Mitchell Musolino – I think it’s very possible that a sequel can happen from this. There are so many directions the story could go if another one were to happen, and if Justin decides to do one, I would hope for him to write that Sam returns to it. Absolutely would love to do a sequel as Sam again, without hesitation.

PopHorror – Tell me about The Barn: The Video Game. Were you involved in making it at all? What is the premise?

Mitchell Musolino – The idea of the game and its story was all Justin! He wanted to make not only his movie, but his merchandise completely ’80s authentic to keep that nostalgia. Really, the only thing I did was voice Sam in the game. But the video game kind of follows the movie. The gang is on their way to a concert when their van breaks down near an old barn. So they knock on the doors looking for help, and suddenly Sam’s friends go missing. So you have to fight your way through a horde of creatures to find and rescue them all.

PopHorror – I also heard that there was a board game! That sounds so cool! I can’t wait to play. By the way, congratulations on your Crimmy nomination.

Mitchell Musolino – Thanks! The win for best acting went Trey Harrison from Night of Something Strange. But I was okay with it! It was a bummer to lose out on it, but we got to meet and know some of the minds behind Night of Something Strange, and they’re great people, so it was well deserved, I’m sure!

PopHorror – The compliment is in the nomination! Are you a fan of horror movies? If so, what are your top ten favorites?

Mitchell Musolino – I was never a horror fan until I worked on this movie! I had seen the original Texas Chain Saw Massacre when I was three and it scared me so much that I never watched that genre until recently. Justin and Zane (Hershberger, director of photography) are horror fanatics so it just sorta sunk into me. So my list would go like this:
10: House of Wax
9: The Ring
8: Scream
7: Last House on the Left
6: Friday the 13th – Part VI: Jason Lives
5: Nightmare on Elm Street
4: The Conjuring
3: The Boy
2: Don’t Breath
1: Texas Chain Saw Massacre

PopHorror – So you’ve been converted. Awesome! Although I can’t believe you watch Texas Chain Saw Massacre when you were only three. No wonder you were scared! What are you most afraid of?

Mitchell Musolino – Great White Sharks. I think they’re incredible animals. But my biggest fear in the world is being stranded in open water with a great white.

PopHorror – You and me both. I think Jaws scarred me for life. If you could work with anyone in the industry, who would it be?

Mitchell Musolino – My icons! Actors: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Chris Pratt, Amy Adams, Cate Blanchett…
For directors: James Cameron, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg (obviously), Guillermo del Toro, Ridley Scott, Christopher Nolan… I could go on forever!

PopHorror – If you could create a dream cast of all of your favorite past co-workers, who would you include?

Mitchell Musolino – Nothing would beat working my Barn buddies a second time!

PopHorror – If you could portray on film anyone in history, alive or dead, who would it be?

Mitchell Musolino – I’ve always been fascinated with Leonardo da Vinci. I would choose to portray him.

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PopHorror – Who inspires you?

Mitchell Musolino – My mother has always been my biggest inspiration. Her and I went through hard times together when I was young and she never gave up on me, so I’ve always wanted to make sure that I made her proud.

PopHorror – Do you have any roles coming up that you can talk about?

Mitchell Musolino – I do have some projects in the coming future. I am a part of two anthology films. One is called 10/31/16. Rocky Gray, the one who scored The Barn started it, and is getting Justin and Zane involved in it as well. The other is called Cryptids. A radio DJ is taking calls about stories that his/her listeners have of the cryptid monsters such as Bigfoot. So I have parts in both of those. If everything goes smoothly with that, we could see them in 2017.

About Tracy Allen

As the co-owner and Editor-in-Chief of PopHorror.com, Tracy has learned a lot about independent horror films and the people who love them. Now an approved critic for Rotten Tomatoes, she hopes the masses will follow her reviews back to PopHorror and learn more about the creativity and uniqueness of indie horror movies.

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