by David Koon
Great turnout last night for two screenings of "Madison County," the Arkansas-made retro slasher flick that kicked off the Little Rock Horror Picture Show. Visit the film's website and watch the trailer here.
"Madison County" is about a group of college kids who travel to a remote town in North Arkansas to meet with the author of a book on a local serial killer, only to fall into the clutches of a deformed murderer who wears a rotting pig's head as a mask, and who kills with the apparent consent of those who live in the town.
Director Eric England, producer/actor Ace Marrero and star Colley Bailey answered questions from the audience after both screenings last night on topics ranging from camera choice to special effects to working with the sometimes-suspicious locals (one of which, England said, tried to purposely run over the shoot's rented, $100,000 Red One camera with his truck for reasons that still aren't exactly clear). Some of the night's most entertaining stories were the trio's tales of dirt-budget movie making in the wilds of real-life Madison County — including the cast and crew sleeping a dozen to a room in one of the county's two motels while fending off toads, stickbugs, cockroaches, black widow spiders and an infestation of maggots in their rooms.
England, who was born in Arkansas, said that while his next film, "Roadside," was shot in Virginia, he wants to return to the state to make movies again soon — possibly a sequel to "Madison County," which he and Marrero see as a multiple film franchise built around the Pighead character.
The Little Rock Horror Picture Show continues today at Market Street Cinema.