Our ongoing series of interviews with the Blumhouse crew continues, in which we share our collective passion for all things scary, discuss our personal and career histories in the genre we all know and love, reveal our favorite films, and maybe even share a few spooky stories.
Today we sit down for a Q&A with Alyse Wax, Writer for Blumhouse.com!
BLUMHOUSE.COM: How long have you been a horror fan, and what attracted you to the genre?
Alyse Wax: I have been watching horror films since I was about eight years old. I don’t know what it was that first attracted me to the genre. I found horror movies of the late 1980s funnier than the were scary. Plus I think it made me feel like an “outlaw.” My parents weren’t thrilled about my new obsession, and I was the only girl I knew who liked horror movies. I delighted in showing movies to boys and watching them squirm or get queasy.
BH: What is your role at Blumhouse Productions? Can you tell us a little about your job?
AW: I am a contributing writer. I pitch article ideas, the editors tell me they are awesome, and I write them. Sometimes they give me assignments, too.
BH: What is your career background, training, school, etc?
AW: I went to USC School of Cinema-Television, where I graduated with a BA in Cinema-Television with an emphasis in critical studies and a minor in creative writing and literature. Originally I wanted to write and produce for television and ended up producing reality television. After about five years, I got burned out and quit. While I was trying to figure out what I was going to do, I started a fashion blog, SporkFashion.com and spun that off into beauty and lifestyle blogs. I started writing for another site reviewing books and movies (mainly for the freebies). They needed a Los Angeles-based writer to do a set visit for a werewolf TV series called MOONLIGHT, and I was free, so I took the gig. While there, I met Joe McCabe, the associate editor of FEARnet.com, then located in Philadelphia. I had no idea that writing about horror was a “thing” and gave him my card in case he needed anyone in Los Angeles to cover local events. Two months later, he called me out of the blue and asked me to cover a junket. Then another junket. And another.
Soon I was freelancing pretty regularly for FEARnet, and even more when they relocated to Los Angeles. In 2012, Joe left FEARnet, and the editor, Lawrence Raffel, immediately offered me his job. I took it, and it was the best job I ever had. I was being paid to interview my heroes, watch horror movies, and review TV shows! I was devastated when FEARnet closed in 2014, a victim of the Comcast-NBCUniversal merger. I returned to full-time freelance, and currently write for Blumhouse, Shock Till You Drop, Coming Soon, Crave Online, Superhero Hype, and CONtv. Throughout my career, I have also been published in Fangoria, Teen People Magazine, Weekly World News, Bloody Disgusting, Indie Wire, Daily Dead, and Deadly Magazine.
I just had my first book published by BearManor Media: CURIOUS GOODS: BEHIND THE SCENES OF FRIDAY THE 13TH: THE SERIES. As a child, I was obsessed with the FRIDAY THE 13TH TV series that aired in the late 1980s, so I turned that obsession into a creative outlet. It is the first book solely focused on the TV series. It is currently available to purchase on Amazon, and will be in stores in January.
BH: What/who is your favorite monster and why?
AW: Freddy Krueger, because I love his punny sense of humor.
BH: What is your weapon of choice?
AW: Kitchen knife. When I was younger, I used to practice my slasher villain knife hold and stalking stance. My parents were genuinely disturbed by that.
BH: List five of your favorite horror films.
AW: A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, HALLOWEEN (the original), SUSPIRIA, DELLAMORTE DELLAMORE, and CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST
BH: What was the first horror movie you ever saw, and what was your reaction?
AW: My first horror movie was A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET: THE DREAM MASTER. I was eight or nine years old and was terrified to watch it. But watch it I did, and I realized that I was scared of the idea of horror movies – not the movies themselves. I may or may not have had a tiny crush of Freddy Krueger. I loved his cheesy sense of humor! After that movie, it was all over. I watched horror constantly. To this day, I have never been genuinely scared by a horror film. HALLOWEEN was probably the closest I ever came. (I started watching it one night, then decided I had to wait and watch it during the day. I was about twelve.)
BH: Describe one of your favorite Halloween costumes that you’ve worn.
AW: When I was five, I was She-Ra, Princess of Power. When I was thirteen, I was Wednesday Addams. And in my early 20s, I was Andy Warhol. My mom went as a Warhol painting.
BH: Name one horror celebrity, dead or alive, you would love to meet, and tell us why.
AW: I have always wanted to interview Ruggero Deodato because of an early obsession with CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST. Or Elvira because I worshipped her as a kid.
BH: Please recommend a recent horror film that you saw and really enjoyed?
AW: Can I pick TV shows? I watch way more TV than movies. I am really enjoying ASH VS. EVIL DEAD. It is fun, gory, and Bruce Campbell is just amazing. This season of AMERICAN HORROR STORY is also really good – easily my favorite season of the series. I will also defend THE VAMPIRE DIARIES and THE ORIGINALS as genre shows: the blood and violence and torture far outweigh the smoochy-romance bits.