You could make the argument for it. Last month, the shot-in-Edmonton mind-bending thriller, Come True, was released. And this week, Bloodthirsty is available for preorder on iTunes, with the video-on-demand release coming on May 18 for services such as Bell, Rogers, Shaw, Telus, CineplexStore and VimeoOnDemand.
Bloodthirsty was principally shot at an acreage southwest of the city, an eclectic home with enough bric-a-brac to make any decent antique collector whistle with appreciation. Some studio and bedroom shots were done in other Edmonton locations, in a three-week whirlwind for Montreal-based director Amelia Moses and her cast.
“We really lucked out with that house, for sure,” says Moses. “We were at the house for the majority of the time. It adds to the atmosphere when you’re in a real location like that. What was unique about that place that we loved was that it’s strange and very different than the typical kinds of houses you’d see in Edmonton and lots of other cities. It also had a lot of stuff to work with. When you’re working on a low-budget film, you don’t have a lot of budget for set decoration, so this house had so much stuff — the man who owns it is a collector. He had a lot of stuff we were able to utilize and fill the space.”
In the film, a burgeoning pop star named Grey (Lauren Beatty) and her girlfriend go to the rural home of a famed music producer (Greg Bryk), who some believe may have murdered another singer with whom he’d worked. The goal? To refine Grey’s sound and record a new album. And, as the relationship between producer and musician becomes more heated, a much darker truth is revealed. Oh, and there’s werewolves. And that primal hunger becomes an analogy for the artistic process.
“I like the idea of ‘do you have to be a monster to be an artist?’” says Moses. “I think horror, as a genre, pushes things to their extremes. So, I am being facetious making a statement like that, because the real world is a lot more nuanced and complex than that. But I think there is a kind of creative ambition that can really take over. And, art-making can kind of be a selfish act.”
The support of the Edmonton Screen Industries’ Office helped attract the makers of Bloodthirsty to this city. And, while the film has yet to have its major release, it already earned Canadian Screen Award nominations for its score (from Michelle Osis) and original song. The songs used in the film were written by Calgary’s Elizabeth Lowell Boland (known by the stage name “Lowell”) — and are definitely not breezy offerings. The song, “Bloodthirsty” is from where the film gets its name, and if you like Billie Eilish, Lowell’s music may be right up your alley.
“I first remember hearing ‘Bloodthirsty’ when she (Lowell) sent it to me,” says Moses. “And that’s when we realized we should embrace this as our core track throughout. The song really sums up a lot of the themes and the emotions of the character.”
Of course, if you want to hear the track before you see the movie, hit play below.