Filmmaker Spotlight: Austin McEuen + His Short Film "The Clowns"
FILMMAKER SPOTLIGHT ON AUSTIN McEUEN
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Austin McEuen and I’m a first year graduate film student at The University of Central Arkansas. Afterwards I’m hoping to be a teacher on either a high school or university level.
In honor of Halloween we have uploaded your short film THE CLOWNS, which you recently made available to the public. Can you tell us a little about the film?
I made The Clowns during my Digital Filmmaking 2 class in my undergraduate. I already knew I wanted to make a horror film, since it’s my favorite genre, but I specifically wanted something that had a Halloween (1978) vibe to it. I came up with the idea from the random clown sightings that happened around the country in 2016. I was thinking to myself “why hasn’t anybody made a film about this yet?”, so decided to do it myself. I wanted something more than a slasher film, I wanted something with a little kick to it, like a twist. I wrote and recorded all the music heard in the film, I wanted a simple, but eerie, creepy score like John Carpenter creates. The film was also shot in one night. Through its short festival run, The Clowns won the Bronze award at the Spotlight Horror Film Awards, Audience Choice Award at the Conway film festival, and Official Selection at the Chicago Horror Film Festival.
What made you decide to be a filmmaker?
Since three years old I’ve been a film buff and fascinated with movies. Once I got older to understand them better, I knew wanted to be in the movie business somewhere, I just didn’t know what. First it was to act in movies, but in my teen years I was all about music. I still had a love for film, I just didn’t know I could do anything to peruse it until I found a program at Pulaski Tech. After Pulaski Tech, I found out about UCA’s film program and went from there. Now I’m a grad student and plan to continue my film career as I go on. My favorite crew positions for film are writing, directing, editing, and scoring.
What filmmakers have influenced you?
Filmmakers that have influenced me are Rob Zombie, Eli Roth, and John Carpenter. All for different creative reasons, but all for the love of horror films. Rob Zombie for the disturbing dialogue, Eli Roth for the gore shock, and John Carpenter for the suspense.
What is next for you as a filmmaker?
My next step as a filmmaker is to hopefully make my first feature film. I have written one, and two others in the process. Two of them are based off two of my shorts The Clowns and China Grove, and the other’s working title is Shit Faced, which is a horror comedy. I’m not sure which one to make first, but I’ll be happy with any of them.
FOLLOW AUSTIN ONLINE:
SHORT FILM SPOTLIGHT: THE CLOWN, DIRECTED BY AUSTIN McEUEN
For Halloween we wanted to bring you a horror short film so we hope you enjoy this short recently made available to the public by the filmmaker!
CAUTION: FILM CONTAINS MATURE CONTENT MEANT FOR ADULTS ONLY
THE CLOWNS, DIRECTED BY AUSTIN McEUEN
During a towns craze, on Halloween night, a struggling couple are victimized by a killer clown.
On Halloween night in Greensboro, North Carolina, struggling couple David (Zach Atchley) and Amy (Hannah Harris) constantly argue and ignore each other on a drive home from a Halloween party. On the radio, the hosts inform viewers about dangerous clown sightings happening around town. When they arrive home they notice the power is out and a red balloon floating in the door way. David checks inside the house, while Amy nervously waits outside. A “clown” runs out from the bushes, which turns out to be their friend Kurt (Michael Lewis) pulling a prank. Kurt admits that he did not put the balloon in the door way. As David and Kurt argue, Amy notices a Clown (Logan Milks) holding red balloons standing across the street. Discovering that the clown is dangerous, the three survivors work together to survive the night of terror.
David: Zach Atchley
Amy: Hannah Harris
Kurt: Michael Lewis
Clown/Ben: Logan Milks
Secret Clown: Justin McEuen
Writer, Director, Producer, Editor, Sound Design, Composer: Austin McEuen
Director of Photography: Daniel Byrd
Production Design: Matthew Magdefrau