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A Film Issue

Norman J. Warren

Until the mid-1970s, British horror films tended to be camp, period rehashes of American horror classics in which hammy, top hat-wearing toffs would end up being killed by the big guys from the gore of yore.
Bruno Bayley
Κείμενο Bruno Bayley
02 Σεπτέμβριος 2009, 12:00am

Words and Photo By Bruno Bayley

Stills and Artwork Courtesy of Norman J. Warren

Satan’s Slave, Prey,

Terror

Driller Killer

Vice

Vice: When you started making films, the British horror genre was broadly in the “Hammer Horror” tradition, wasn’t it?

Norman J. Warren:

Frankenstein

But they were a pretty direct translation of the American predecessors?

Terror (1979)                  Click to enlarge

Inseminoid (1981)

And you were a Hammer fan?

Satan’s Slave

In bringing horror up to date, did you ever try to inject any social commentary or was your main aim to avoid the period trappings of Hammer?

Satan’s Slave

As far as making the most entertaining film possible goes, how did that affect the plot or writing process?

Satan’s Slave

So is this when you changed your writing technique?

Suspiria

Satan’s Slave

Click to enlarge

The whole video nasty thing came along after you started making films, but still I can’t believe that you had no trouble making films like these in the mid-70s for a British audience.

Terror

What was your view about the whole video nasty hysteria, as someone who had been making fairly groundbreaking horror films years before without complaint?

Driller Killer

Nightmare in a Damaged Brain

I Spit on Your Grave

But your films were heavily sexual. The first films you directed were sex films, weren’t they?

Her Private Hell.

Her Private Hell

Loving Feeling

Did you ever have to hold yourself back from certain levels of violence, sex or gore?

Terror

many

Censor-wise, surely religion caused problems? Satan’s Slave must have been tough?

Satan’s Slave

Satan’s Slave

Was Satan’s Slave your main battle with the censors?

Inseminoid

Satan’s Slave (1976)                 Click to enlarge

Satan’s Slave (1976)

So where did it go wrong? Why did you stop making films?

Gunpowder

Inseminoid

It sounds sort of amazing.

Bloody New Year

Gunpowder

Warbirds

The original soundtracks to

and

, composed by Ivor Slaney, have just been released for the first time by Moscovitch Music.