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An Interview with James Cullen Bressack, Director of Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys

by Mike Haberfelner

April 2014

Films directed by James Cullen Bressack on (re)Search my Trash


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Your movie Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys - in a few words, what is it about?


Michael, a fish and wildlife expert moves to a small town with his wife, Cate, and kids after being summoned by the town mayor, Akerman, to help deal with its attacking fish problem. But what Michael didn't know is that the lamprey problem has gotten much much worse and they are attacking people now, not just fish!


Basic question: Why lampreys? And how much research went into that aspect of your movie?


Lampreys have razor sharp teeth and are extremely terrifying looking creatures. They are also one of the oldest animals in the world, dating back to prehistoric time. I'm sure a lot of research went into the script when the writers were writing it, as well as the know how and expertise from Animal Planet itself on the creatures. I know I did my own research on how they move and eat etc. in order to know how to shoot my kills and scares and how to translate to the actors how real of a threat these creatures are.


How did the project get off the ground in the first place?


I was approached by Asylum to direct the film for Animal Planet after the script was already written so I can't answer on how it was originally conceived.  I am very grateful for the opportunity.


If I'm not mistaken, Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys is your first monster movie - a genre at all dear to you, and why (not)?


It is my first creature feature and I have to say, I love creature features. They are a ton of fun. It's something very different. I dont like to repeat myself in the films I do, so it's been fun touching into each subgenre of horror.


No monster movie without special effects - so what can you tell us about yours?




How would you describe your directorial approach to your story at hand?


I gave it a very grounded in reality and real feel. I didn't try to make a campy movie. I had all the actors play it very seriously, and that's where the gold comes from. Real people and a real threat. There are some amazing performances in here.


Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys was made for TV channel Animal Planet's Monster Week - so what can you tell us about your collaboration with Animal Planet, and did working for TV in any way compromise your vision?


Animal Planet was a dream to work with. I would love to do it again sometime. They brought so much knowledge to the table that it made the collaboration conducive for making the best product possible. This is going to be a great film.


With Shannen Doherty, Christopher Lloyd and Jason Brooks, you have quite a stellar main cast - so why them, how did you get them, and what was your collaboration like?


I can't say enough about my amazing cast and crew on this film, I was blessed with some fantastic and artistic people to work with.  Shannen Doherty and I became very close while filming as well. She is an amazing actress and working with her was such an amazing experience. We have such a creative synergy it's unreal.  Christopher Lloyd was a childhood dream becoming a reality. He was amazing. Every second of him on screen is brilliant. HE IS DOC BROWN FOR GOD'S SAKE!  Also working with Jason was a lot of fun too. He has a very distinct process that it was a pleasure to be a part of.


Do talk about the rest of your key cast and crew for a bit!


I love each and every person who worked on this. Can't say enough good things about everyone. I can't start mentioning names though because if I leave one of the 200 people that worked on this film out then they will kill me.


What can you tell us about the actual shoot, and the on-set atmosphere?


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It was amazing. it was one of those shoots where there was just an overwhelming positive energy on the set at all times. We all became a family and had a ton of fun making this one.


The $64-question of course, when exactly will the film premiere?


May 25th on Animal Planet!!!!!


Any future projects you'd like to share?


Many things coming up! I will let everything be known very soon.


Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?


@jamescullenb on Twitter vine and Instagram.


Anything else you are dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?


Nope, we covered it all! Thank you so much for everything!


Thanks for the interview!


© by Mike Haberfelner

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and shall not be held responsible for
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Thanks for watching !!!



Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD