Fresh from its success at the 2010 Aberdour Festival’s first ever ASBO Awards where it picked up the gong for ‘Best Directed Short’, the trailer for the modern horror classic The Devil’s Buttermilk is finally available to view on the world wide interweb!
Now, for the first time, the full story behind this classic piece of celluloid nonsense.
My friends Iain and Aileen live in the picturesque village of Aberdour in the Kingdom of Fife, where they have a Festival each summer. This year was the first ever Aberdour ASBOs short film competition and Iain decided it would be a good idea to enter.
Using some quite spectacular powers of persuasion Iain managed to rope in Aileen, Mel and myself and our friends Blythe and Malcolm for an afternoon of filming during July. All we had at our disposal was Aileen’s posh HD DSLR, various fancy dress costumes and some vague ideas of how we could pay homage to our favourite horror films such as The Wicker Man and The Shining.
After a few dodgy moments trying to convert and edit the footage, we managed to get the final version of the film burned to DVD and hand-delivered to the event organisers on the eve of the competition deadline.
A Night at the ASBOs
The awards ceremony was on Monday night in a marquee beside the shore, and we arrived anticipating an entertaining evening. Little did we know that out of the 14 filmmaking teams who entered, around 10 of them were aged 16 or younger!
Slightly embarrassed, we took our place at the top table alongside our young competitors, a humbling experience indeed, as the standard of films was surprisingly high given the average age of the entrants.
Indeed, although we came second in the audience vote for overall best film, the runaway winner was a young schoolgirl who’s film had a cast entirely made up of lego figures and was a satirical take on the recent failed attempt by channel 4 to film a reality TV show in the village. Her win was thoroughly deserved both for its local relevance and because it was a cracking wee film which definitely got the biggest laughs of the night.
However there were also awards for the various categories and we were delighted when it was announced we won the best directed short award.
Whilst I was proud to be credited as the director, the whole thing was most definitely a joint effort, and only came about because of Iain’s sterling work as producer and location scout, Aileen’s excellent leading lady performance and high quality camera/camera work, Malcolm’s touching performance as a mourning Sea Captain, Mel’s mysterious performance as a mysterious masked lady and special effects know-how, and of course Blythe’s era-defining performance as a zombie pig with a home-made man-bag (not to mention his show-stopping acceptance speech).
A special mention also has to go for the completely original soundtrack, produced by Iain and performed by himself and Aileen with cellos by his brother Allan.
Here’s the film itself – or go direct to YouTube to watch it in glorious HD!
And here’s a lo-fi grainy black and white video diary of what happened on the night: