Tanzeal Rahim Muirhouse News and Interview Cast
: Iain PF McDonald, Kate Henderson, Steve Lynch, Libby Ashby Director
: Tanzeal Rahim Genre
: MARunning Time
: 75 minutesSynopsis
: Ghost Hunter Phillip Muirhouse is on his last stop of a publicity tour at The Monte Cristo Homestead in Junee. Infamously it's known as Australia's most haunted house. The Monte Cristo homestead has been explored by teams of paranormal investigators from around the world, their conclusions, all confirming the existence of ghosts. When Phillip's team fail to show up - he decides to break the golden rule of ghost hunters - he goes looking for them alone.Fright-Night Film Festival
Australia's own supernatural horror film "Muirhouse'; currently screening at Marche Du Film at June's Cannes Film Festival; announced it will be included in the Official Selection at this year's Fright-Night Film Festival in the USA.
?We are thrilled to receive an invitation from this renowned horror festival' Tanzeal Rahim, Writer/Director of ?Muirhouse' comments ?Australians have been kicking goals at this year's Cannes Film Festival, and the support for our film from local and overseas markets has been overwhelming! This invitation to attend Fright-Night is just a cherry on the top of a hugely successful week for us!'.
In the tradition of films like ?The Blair Witch Project' and ?Paranormal Activity' -"Muirhouse' is a documentary style film set in Australia's most haunted house; the Monte Cristo Homestead.
The film is based on actual happenings at the house from documented recordings by paranormal experts. Philip Muirhouse (played by Australian actor Iain PF McDonald) finds himself alone in the house; and the frightening events of that night are recorded in real time by camera and audio devices; taking the audience on a suspenseful, nail biting ride! Website
For more information on Muirhouse visit:Iain PF McDonald InterviewTanzeal Rahim Interview
Interview with Tanzeal Rahim
With a degree in Professional Writing, majoring in Screenwriting, Tanzeal Rahim has spent the last 10 years directing some of the most successful TV commercials in Australia. Muirhouse is his first feature.
The film was born out of a desire to direct longer format projects - having already established an ad agency by the age of 24. He is currently in pre- production on his next film The Devil Wants Sugar.
Tanzeal is one of the producers for Screen Australia's Induction Program in Cannes 2012.Question:
How did you react when you were told Muirhouse would screen at the US Fright-Night Film Festival?Tanzeal Rahim
: I was running around the hotel room fist pumping the air and yelling at the top of my lungs! It's the film's first official entry into a festival and it's exciting beyond words. Question:
What originally inspired you to write a thriller, such as Muirhouse?Tanzeal Rahim
: As a kid I used to always read all these books about ghosts and hauntings. When I decided to write a film, my first and only instinct was to write a ghost story. I loved the opportunity to create tension and terror without gratuitous gore.Question:
Can you share with us how authentic Muirhouse is?Tanzeal Rahim
: The film takes place in Australia's most haunted house - The Monte Cristo Homestead. What happens to our character Phillip Muirhouse in that house was researched using accounts by visitors - findings with paranormal experts from around the world, from interviewing locals and also through reading up on the history of the house. We also spent months getting the rights to actual images of ghosts - taken by the public and experts. We present the film in a documentary style - so to add to the realism of it all we thought why not get real images, use real history and base the events in the film on actual accounts and experiences in the house. Question:
Why did you choose to cast Iain PF McDonald?Tanzeal Rahim
: I'd worked with Iain a few years ago on some very famous TV commercials. I always had him in the back of my mind as a 'If I ever make a film I'll cast him' kind of a guy. So it was only natural when I began scripting, all I could picture was Iain!Question:
How important was it to cast a strong talent, such as Iain PF McDonald, due to the inability to script the fear he genuinely feels rather than acting?Tanzeal Rahim
: I had been to the house and felt that fear myself; I knew that a talented actor such as Iain would be able to draw from the house and give me the performance I required. From day one, we had things happen to us that can't be explained that I know spooked him out.Question:
How did you find the location, of the house?Tanzeal Rahim
: I'd known about the house for a long time because I have friends who are from the area. I had also researched many other haunted areas in Australia, but I kept coming back to this house in particular. The minute I visited the house, I knew that this was the place we needed to shoot in. Question:
Where there any difficulties getting access to the house, to film?Tanzeal Rahim
: Reg and Olive Ryan who own the house - were the nicest people ever. I drove 5 hours one way to see them - and explained what I wanted to do. They gave me total access and their support was a dream.Question:
Can you talk us through the process of filming; especially because it is difficult to direct ghosts seen in Murihouse?Tanzeal Rahim
: Because we only had a limited amount of time in the house, there was months of planning involved to ensure that we could film everything we required in the amount of time we had. I got lucky in that all my cast and crew were people that I regularly worked with, so we already had this natural rhythm from the moment we started. As far as the ghosts were concerned, we had a terrifying incident happen to us on the first scene that we were shooting. Our lead actress Kate saw the ghost of Mrs Crawley standing right behind me, staring into the back of my head, while I was giving her direction. That same night, after we wrapped the last scene, I saw the ghost of Mr Crawley standing in the doorway of his bedroom. I decided not to tell everybody in fear that they might not continue working on the project. After we finished the last scene, I then told everyone what I saw and everyone had a similar story to tell. Question:
Do you notice differently creepy elements every time you re-watch the film?Tanzeal Rahim
: Yes, in fact when we were colour grading the picture, we noticed that in one of the scenes, there appeared to be a face coming through the wall in the background. In the film, there are three unexplained scenes where lights appear and disappear and things can be seen in the background in doorways that was not designed by us. I'll let you decide for yourself where they are in the film! Question:
Would you choose to return to the house to film a second Muirhouse film?Tanzeal Rahim
: We would love to, but we're not sure if the ghosts of the Crawley's would have us back... Question:
What do you think audiences enjoy most about Muirhouse?Tanzeal Rahim
: I think audiences really like the tension that the film creates and they can empathise with what it must be like being alone in a haunted house at night.Question:
What's next for you?Tanzeal Rahim
: We're off to support the film in the States in a couple of weeks, and then when we get back we are in pre-production on two films.
Interview by Brooke Hunter