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Exclusive photos and comments: Jake Busey is “THE PIG KILLER” in Chad Ferrin’s indie shocker

Monday, February 28, 2022 | Exclusives, News

By MICHAEL GINGOLD

One of Canada’s most notorious crime sprees is coming to the screen, in graphic detail.

Director Chad Ferrin (THE DEEP ONES, EXORCISM AT 60,000 FEET) gave RUE MORGUE a selection of exclusive pics and words from himself and his collaborators on THE PIG KILLER, which recently wrapped shooting. It’s based on the true case of Robert “Willy” Pickton, a pig farmer who murdered dozens of women over a 20-year span beginning in 1983. Arrested in 2002, he was convicted in the deaths of six of his victims, and is currently serving a life sentence. “In chilling detail,” according to the movie’s PR, “the sometimes lyrical, often darkly humorous PIG KILLER spins a tale of true-crime terror, sheathed in sadism, splattered in gore and transcending all manner of good taste for an honest portrait of a reclusive, pig-farming serial killer who only got caught because he, in his own words, ‘got sloppy.’ ” Jake Busey stars as Pickton and Lew Temple (THE DEVIL’S REJECTS) plays his brother David, with producer Kate Patel, Bai Ling, Robert Miano, Silvia Spross, James Russo, Cassandra Gava, Ginger Lynn, Cyril O’Reilly, Michael Paré and Robert “Corpsy” Rhine, who produced with Miano, co-starring.

A Girls and Corpses/Crappy World production, THE PIG KILLER was first pitched to Ferrin, pictured below with Miano, as his previous movie NIGHT CALLER (which we last reported on here, and which is set for theatrical release April 8 and a home entertainment debut in May from 123 Go Films) was hitting the festival circuit. “I got a call from executive producer Jeff Olan, saying that he would like to set up a meeting with Kate, who was looking to make a film about Pickton,” Ferrin tells us. “As with all potential productions, I asked, ‘Does she have the money?’ Jeff assured me that if Kate and I were to click, the budget would be in place. So, in a dimly lit booth at my favorite Chinese restaurant, she laid out the Pickton story as well as parts of her own life growing up in Vancouver that she wanted woven into the script. Latching onto numerous elements that paralleled my own life on a farm, I gave her my pitch on how I would be right for the project. Seems we clicked because at the end of the meal, she cut me a check to start writing. Two weeks later, I handed over my first draft of the screenplay and we were off and running on the most thrilling production of my career.”

“I found this story entirely compelling, as it is based on actual events,” says Temple. “To give some some nuance as to why this happened was our challenge as storytellers. I appreciated the opportunity to work with Jake Busey again [after 2014’s WICKED BLOOD, 2010’s THE KILLING JAR and others], and look forward to audience reception of Chad’s monstrous rendition.”

“This film bridges reality and elements of the classic horror-film genre,” adds Patel. “In addition to the genius effects of Joe Castro, real blood was shed in the making of this extraordinary little film. When true-life events combine with horror, rescue animals and an unlikely love story, magic happens.” Said rescue animal was Spunky the pig, which “made everyone smile with each and every oink,” Ferrin says.

“This is a provocative story about how our lives are on the edge of being one second away from death,” says Ling. “My character Brenda’s story is brutally powerful and sad; I made her alive and vulnerable and funny, so the impact of what happens to her is so moving and shocking! It introduces a new way of telling a horror story cinematically.”

The cast in general appreciated Ferrin’s commitment to his vision for the movie overall and individual moments. “There was a scene where Pat [Kurt Bonzell] pulls my character, Bill Hickok, out of a trailer where he’s just seen a young woman bound, bleeding and begging for help,” says actor Scott Vogel. “Bill wants to do something about it and Pat’s telling him to forget it, it’s none of our business. Well, we did it several different ways, but always as a two-shot. So I went to Chad the next morning and said, ‘Hey, are you sure you don’t want a single of Bill just reacting? Just so you have another way out of that two-shot?’ But Chad was adamant that he didn’t need or want that. He said he wasn’t about to mess up that beautiful two-shot with anything other than a cut back to Wendy in the trailer, if need be. So I take that as just one example that he is very confident when he has what he wants.”

Ferrin returns the praise: “I’m beyond proud of THE PIG KILLER and of the wonderful cast and crew that brought it to life.” Keep your eyes here for updates.

Michael Gingold
Michael Gingold (RUE MORGUE's Head Writer) has been covering the world of horror cinema for over three decades, and spent 28 years as a writer and editor for FANGORIA magazine and its website. In addition to RUE MORGUE, he currently writes for BIRTH.MOVIES.DEATH, SCREAM, IndieWire.com, TIME OUT, DELIRIUM and others. His book THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO MONSTER MOVIES (FAB Press) is out this fall, and he has contributed liner notes and featurettes to a number of Blu-ray and DVD releases. Among his screenplay credits are SHADOW: DEAD RIOT and LEECHES!, and he is currently working on THE DOLL with director Dante Tomaselli.