Texas born scream queen Deneen Melody hasn’t even been in the business for two years and already she is making a serious impact.
She was officially dubbed a scream queen by Cinema Fantastique in August of 2009 and in the year since she’s been a VERY busy woman.
Some of her film credits include writer/director Joe Davis’ ‘As Night Falls’ with Debbie Rochon and Raine Brown, Travis B. Miller’s ‘The Wasteland Horror’, the web series ‘Western X’, the upcoming remake of the drive-in horror classic ‘Don’t Look in the Basement’ with a stellar cast that includes Alan Rowe Kelly, Susan Adriensen, Raine Brown, Caroline Williams, and Debbie Rochon.
Deneen will also be featured in a segment in the upcoming chapter horror film ‘Slices of Life’, as well as ‘Dark Hallways’, ‘Dead Light District’, ‘Song of the Shattered’ with Tara Cardinal, Brandon Slagle, and Devanny Pinn, and several others.
She even currently models through Comic Book Divas.
Needless to say she hasn’t been cloned --- yet --- she’s just one extremely in demand young woman and with good reason – looks, charm, and talent.
Recently Deneen was gracious enough to take some time out from her sizzling indie horror career for this exclusive Racks and Razors interview.


So Deneen why don't you start us off with a visual and describe the room or place where you are answering these questions?

I’m writing this on a lap top in my bedroom while playing Final Fantasy XII in 
between  questions…so that is currently on the TV. (I just made it to The 
Stilshrine of Miriam… whew.) The bed is slightly messed up and there are 
clothes from my previous films thrown about everywhere…most of them are 
covered in fake blood. There are also some random DVDs lying around as well as 
a few books. (Yay for re-reading the Harry Potter series! The new movie looks 
awesome!) Honestly, one may think Godzilla came through here, played some 
video games, and then left. I’m not always the most organized person….hmmm.

Okay tell me a bit about the Joe Davison movie you just completed with Raine Brown and Debbie Rochon called 'As Night Falls'.  How does your character Elizabeth fit into the story?

Joe Davison’s AS NIGHT FALLS is an action/horror feature that was filmed in Florida this past January/February. It is a movie that has just about everything you can imagine…cool cars, zombies, evil ghost parents, samurai swords, guns…and a fantastic cast and crew. Here is the storyline from the AS NIGHT FALLS website:

“10 year old Amelia's parents think it's time for her to go to sleep permanently, leaving her broken body in a silent shallow grave. 50 years later, Mommy and Daddy are back from hell, intent on wreaking the same deadly discipline on anyone not in bed by nightfall. Sisters Holly and Elizabeth are losing their minds, and their friends are losing their heads. Something evil has crashed the party, but no-one knows what they are fighting. When the girl's brother, Charlie, arrives, he completes the family group and the kids start to find out what firm parenting really means.”

My character, Elizabeth, is the main protagonist in the film. She is the older sister of Holly (Lily Cardone), the younger sister of Charlie (Joe Davison), and the girlfriend of rock star Otto (Dwight Cenac). Her father recently passed away, her mother is always gone, and her brother no longer lives with them…so she finds herself being the main caretaker of her sister. In some ways, Elizabeth (aka Lizzy), is a mother figure to many characters in the story, not just Holly…as she is very protective of her friends and boyfriend as well. When all this weird stuff starts to happen and her friends start to get killed off one by one, Lizzy does what needs to be done to protect her sister. I guess the best way to describe the character is that she is a fighter. She doesn’t let the fear get to her as long as she knows Holly is safe…plus, she has Charlie and Otto fighting along side her.

This was really such an important film to me, and I had a wonderful time with the cast and crew. AS NIGHT FALLS stars Dwight Cenac, Lily Cardone, Joe Davison, Grace Chapman, Michael Ellison, Raine Brown, Andre Reissig, Jeremy King, Tyler Cross, Julie Anne, and of course…the legendary Debbie Rochon. (She throws me through a fence in the movie…and does an awesome fight scene with Dwight, which I mention later in this interview!)

I also see you are in the 'Slices of Life' movie and your segment is called 'Pink Snapper'.  So will you give away some essential bit of the plot if you share with the Racks and Razors readers what the "pink snapper" is? 

Well…truth is…I really cannot say anything. I have sworn myself to secrecy! I can, however, tell you that this segment is the final story in the SLICES OF LIFE anthology by Anthony G. Sumner and TinyCore Pictures. It is extremely gruesome, sick, and twisted…and people are going to love it. The basic story revolves around a brother and sister (Galen Schloming and myself) that escape from a sexually abusive home…only to find themselves involved in something much, much worse. The segment also stars Judith Lesser, Bruce Varner, and Mike Tracy. This film is one of my favorites and I am looking forward to having horror fans (and non-horror fans!) join in the bloodbath.

'SLICES OF LIFE' is directed by Anthony G. Sumner, written by Anthony, Eric Richter (who is also a very skilled DP), and Alan Rowe Kelly, and features an incredible Midwest cast. SLICES should start screening at film festivals this fall, so be sure to keep up with the official website for news and updates: http://slicesoflifemovie.com.

Tell me a little about your upcoming movie 'The Dead Light District'.

'THE DEAD LIGHT DISTRICT' is an upcoming project by K.M. Jamison, the creator of the SERIAL: AMORAL UPRISING films. He is a very talented filmmaker who brings realism to his movies, they aren’t just typical slasher flicks, and that is also going to be seen in THE DEAD LIGHT DISTRICT. Here is the plot that can be found on the official website:

“The Dead Light District tells the story of 27 year old Jonah Sharp (Christopher Howell), a former award winning crime journalist in Chicago desperately searching for a way to save his failing career from an early and unexpected retirement. After being fired from the Chicago Tribune for a number of reasons, Jonah is forced to take employment writing a celebrity sleaze column, a job that begins to slowly eat away at his pride and self-esteem. In an effort to regain his own recognition as a true crime journalist, Jonah accepts an unlikely assignment given to him to seek out information regarding a string of gruesome murders being reported around the Red Light District, a desolate part of the city that serves as a haven for criminal activity. An assignment that serves as a life changing event for Jonah when he becomes witness to the brutal homicide of a prostitute who is murdered by the same psychopath responsible for all of the prior killings being discovered around the Red Light District. Things go from bad to worse for Jonah after suddenly receiving a gift from an anonymous “fan”. An unusual gift that lands him face to face with the only one capable of saving his career by any means necessary.”

My character is Josie, a spunky little prostitute that helps Jonah during a part of the film. She is also a pretty key character, but I won’t give anything else away. You’ll just have to see the film! Deadlight also features some wonderful indie actors such as Elske McCain, Ari “First Jason” Lehman, Colleen Elizabeth Miller, and Christopher Howell. We should begin filming sometime this fall, and news/updates will be provided on the website: http://deadlightmovie.com

I also want to hear about your current project ‘SERIAL: Girls Night Out”.  Give me a teaser that is going to make it irresistible to the Racks and Razors readers.

GIRLS NIGHT OUT is another film by the talented K.M. Jamison that is being produced by Jim Bett and Mitchell D. Wells. (Jim Bett is also doing the special effects in this one…he is awesome at the blood and gore!) Here is a bit about it from the website:

“Based five years after the tragic events of SERIAL: Amoral Uprising, Girls Night Out is a continuation of the fictional life profile of a manipulative sociopath and serial killer named Trenton Wade Bracks. Highly influenced by the disturbing true case files of former death row convicts Ted Bundy and Henry Lee Lucas, Girls Night Out tells the horrific story of two unsuspecting sorority sisters from the University of Memphis that happen to cross Trenton’s path while spending time at the bar on a “girl’s night out.”

Christopher Howell, who is an amazing actor, is returning to play the charming and twisted Trenton Bracks. I am playing the role of Kendra Reid, one of the lead sorority girls along with the lovely Colleen Elizabeth Miller and Kelsey Zukowski. This is a film I have been extremely eager to work on…the script is great and the gore is unbelievable. Oh yes. It will be gruesome!!

I am also thrilled that you are going to be in the remake of 'Don't Look in the Basement'.  Now I've asked this to several people slated for the movie, but if we were told not to look somewhere in Deneen Melody's residence where would we be forbidden to look and what would we find if we looked there?

….don’t look in the trunk of my car. At this point, I literally have no idea what is in there. The last time I looked, I could only make out a random Medieval Times cup, some dried up flowers (???), and I believe a garbage bag full of clothes from The Disney Store. Or something like that. I think. I don’t even know. Oh, and there is fake blood everywhere from a bottle that had burst open and lots of dirt. It is a total mess.

Btw, DON’T LOOK IN THE BASEMENT! is going to be amazing!!! You couldn’t have two better directors than Alan Rowe Kelly and Anthony Sumner to take the reigns on this project. We have a fantastic ensemble cast with talents like Zoe Daelman Chlanda, Jerry Murdock, Susan Adriensen, Raine Brown, Jeff Dylan Graham, Terry M. West, Marv Blauvelt, Alan Rowe Kelly, and even horror legends Debbie Rochon and Caroline Williams.

You are being called the newest Scream Queen. So, if you were to organize and run a Scream Queen Academy, what are some of the subjects would you teach and what would be the final exam to see if the girls were worthy?

Aw, I am honored, but I honestly don’t think I am qualified to run a Scream Queen Academy. If anyone should be in charge, it would need to be a legend like Debbie Rochon…along with ladies like Caroline Williams, Susan Adriensen, and Lori Cardille. These are the actresses and Scream Queens that I look up to…and they’re the ones that could really teach up and coming actresses on how to bring it, because really, there is more to it than just being able to run and scream. I was watching James Morgart’s WON TON BABY! A few weeks ago, starring Debbie Rochon, and she NAILS that role…it is always amazing to see a talent like that. And I highly recommend that actresses watch Lori Cardille’s portrayal of Sarah in George Romero’s DAY OF THE DEAD.

So, these are the ladies that should be asked about subjects in a Scream Queen Academy…as they are the true Queens of the Scream Queens.

In the smaller budgeted horror movies and such some very interesting things can happen on set.  What is the craziest, scariest, or simply most unusual thing that you've ever witnessed on a movie set?

Haha! Nothing too extreme, but I’ve had some pretty weird things happen to me on set. One of them involves my tooth getting chipped and (I wasn’t aware of this till I went to the Dentist), completely shattered in the back. I don’t want to go into details on that one…even though it was pretty amusing. Also, while filming SONG OF THE SHATTERED, a bear randomly appeared on set in the middle of shooting. I was in the cabin at the time, where is was nice and quiet, but then everyone else came running in talking about some bear. He was so cute, though! I think Brandon Slagle managed to get him on camera. We’ll see if he makes a cameo in the film or not.

My hair has also been stained pink on a few different projects because of being soaked in blood. (Gotta make sure it is the kind that will wash out!) And someone actually threw up on another film due to the blood and guts.

The craziest thing, though, was witnessing Dwight Cenac and Debbie Rochon do a fight scene for AS NIGHT FALLS…hanging on wires outside of a van that was being moved around on a trailer. It was cold and dark…but these two stuck through it and totally owned the scene. I think it is going to be one of the most memorable scenes in the film!

Do you have any other upcoming projects you would like the racksandrazors.com readers to know about?

Well, of course there is DON’T LOOK IN THE BASEMENT!, which we hope to start filming sometime soon. Alan and Anthony are working so incredibly hard to make this film, and their dedication for the story is truly inspirational. I am honored and humbled to be part of such a great project.

Another fantastic ensemble piece I am is STRONGER THAN DEATH by Trevor Wright and Marv Blauvelt, and is slated to film next spring in Indiana. This is going to be one heck of a film…it’s one of the most emotionally involved scripts I have read. It isn’t really just a horror flick; it is a psychological, mind twisting, heart breaking story venturing into the world of dark world of drugs. Think Requiem for a Dream, but with supernaturalism and blood/gore mixed in. My character, Carmen, is just one of many tragic figures featured within the story.

I am also getting ready to work on a short film entitled CRESTFALLEN which is written by Russ Penning. This is a project that is going to be directed by Jeremiah Kipp and shot by Dominick Sivilli (whom I worked with on LEWIS…fantastic guy!). Marv Blauvelt has also jumped on board to not only act in the piece, but to help cast and produce it. It is a beautiful and sad little film that I have grown quite attached to. When I was first approached on the idea, I fell in love with it. We should be filming sometime later this summer or early fall.

Two projects I just recently wrapped are SONG OF THE SHATTERED and an untitled revenge flick by Jennifer Morgart; both films were shot in PA. SONG OF THE SHATTERED, which I will mention again in this interview, is a feature film dealing with abuse, rape, and the effects these horrible events can have on people. It was written by Brandon Slagle, directed by Wolfgang Meyer (with some scenes by Tara Cardinal), and stars Devanny Pinn, Brandon Slagle, Tara Cardinal, Joe Hollow (who is also produced the film), and Jess Weber. I play a character known as June…a very sweet character that also has a bit of a creep factor to her. You’ll just have to see the film to find out what I mean. I also have to say that I was extremely impressed while on set with this cast/crew. All the characters in the film are not easy ones to play…and seeing Devanny, Tara, Brandon, and Jess take on these roles was amazing.
These guys are the real deal, folks. They aren’t in this business for the glamour…they are in it to make some serious kick butt films!

Ironically enough, the untitled project by Jennifer Morgart (written by James Morgart) deals with sexual oppression and some pretty serious subject matter as well. I was very fortunate enough to become involved in this project (thanks to Damien Colletti posting the notice for an actress on his FB page), and really enjoy working with Jen and James. This was actually Jen’s directorial debut, and she did a fantastic job keeping everything together. James is also a great writer…I’ve told him multiple times that he writes wonderful roles for women, and that is always refreshing. (BTW, everyone needs to keep their eyes open for WON TON BABY! starring Debbie Rochon and Suzi Lorraine. It is HILARIOUS!!!)

Oh, and the web series, WESTERN X (http://westernxtheshow.com), is almost ready to premiere online! This is a supernatural, post apocalyptic western by Michael Flores of Cazador Productions. I play the role of Hecate-Freya in this, and she is one of my favorite roles to date. WESTERN X has a great cast including Dustin Hale, Richard Anderson, Kaily Alissano, Jerry Eselgroth, Jayson James, Anthony Tempesta, Aaron Ginn-Forsberg, and the iconic Vernon G. Wells…just to name a few. This is a series you will not want to miss!

I must also mention some of my upcoming comic books by both COMIC BOOK DIVAS and LEGION STUDIOS. XES is an adult comic by Jeremiah Buckel and Ryan “Master Legion” Mohica of LEGION STUDIOS in which I appear as the cover model. It is a dark and twisted comic, and I believe I will have copies available to purchase at upcoming events. I am also featured in several new comics by COMIC BOOK DIVAS including FANGS (along with Devanny Pinn and Michelle Shields) by Jeff Hughes and artwork by Josh Barker, A LIFE BEHIND THE MASK (as the Batman parody, The Blackbird) with art by Dennis Willman, and GINGER-STEIN: RISE OF THE UNDEAD (as the evil Nicole Harmony) with art also by Dennis Willman. Much like the XES comic, I will be selling prints and posters of the various CBD characters at conventions and events.

Zombies, werewolves, vampires, witches, creatures, aliens, psychos --- what does it for you horrorwise Deneen and why?

No unicorns? Awww. I love unicorns. But really, psychos are the scariest. You never really know what they are thinking and, a lot of the time, they are also extremely intelligent. They also look like normal people (er, sometimes)…unlike rotting zombies, aliens, or monsters…so you won’t ever know what you are dealing with till it is too late. They represent true horror in my opinion.

I am a huge fan of zombie flicks, though, and werewolves. I’ve been involved a few vampire films, including one called BLOOD KIN and the upcoming AFRAID OF SUNRISE by Andy Shatner and Justin Romine, but I’d love to do a cool werewolf or zombie film one of these days.

What was the first movie you saw that scared the shit out of you?

I grew up watching scary movies…so I think I have always been a little desensitized towards REALLY being scared. However, one film I have seen that has really disturbed me is WOLF CREEK, and I honestly cannot tell you why that is. Maybe it is the psycho/serial killer thing. I have seen several films just like it and they have never felt any type of fear, but that particular film got to me. I won’t watch it again.

Alan Rowe Kelly’s A FAR CRY FROM HOME is another film that truly disturbed me. I actually felt horrified for the characters while watching it. It is probably one of the most terrifying indie films I have ever seen. The same thing can be said about one of my latest films, SONG OF THE SHATTERED, written by Brandon Slagle and directed by Wolfgang Meyer and Tara Cardinal. I had the chance to watch some of the footage involving Devanny Pinn’s character, and I honestly had chills. It is the real stuff that gets to me.

Okay, we're pulling the car into the Deneen Melody Drive In.  What three horror flicks are on the triple bill for tonight and what goodies are they going to be serving up at the concession stand?

Oooo! Fun question!! Well, the triple feature would be: George Romero’s DAY OF THE DEAD, James Cameron’s ALIENS, and BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF by Christophe Gans. (Some may argue that the last two are not horror films, but they do have horror elements and fit into the subgenres of horror.) I pick these films because they are all set in very different environments and have some of the best characters ever written for cinema. Plus, I don’t want to just show a bunch of slasher flicks…we need some variety!

'DAY OF THE DEAD' is definitely my favorite of the “Dead” films, and a lot of that has to do with the overall hopelessness of the film. You follow these characters…and the entire time, you just have this feeling that there really is no one else left. This group of people just may be the only people left in the world. Sometimes, you can watch a film and have that tinge of hope, but the atmosphere in DAY OF THE DEAD is so desolate.

'ALIENS' would be the big, fun, explosive blockbuster I would show. I grew up wanting to be Ripley after seeing this movie as a little girl. I mean, forget Newt…I wanted to be Ripley at age 5. Even then, I knew she was a total badass. Both she and Sarah from DAY OF THE DEAD have been two of my biggest influences as an actress. They make me want to play the strong, heroic, intelligent female roles.

As for BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF, this film has everything…so I think it would be a nice way to round out the triple feature. It has plenty of horror elements mixed in with action (Mark Dacascos as Mani is AMAZING!), romance, and even has a bit of an erotic feel to it. It is one of my favorite films and would probably end up creeping out a few people.

Goodies that would be available: NERDS candy, Peanut Butter M&Ms, Popcorn with tons of butter/salt, and Dr. Pepper or Vanilla Coke. No diets here! (Aw…now I am hungry.)

What is the best Halloween costume you ever had?

I have this obsession with Disney’s Beauty and the Beast…Belle is definitely my all-time favorite princess. So, of course, I was Belle for many Halloweens. BUT, the best costume I ever had was my Chicken costume. Yes. I actually dressed up as a Chicken. This was way before the Family Guy Chicken, too. My brother was working at Wal-Mart and they made their employees wear some sort of costumes…and he got stuck with this awesome chicken head. I stole it from him and made an entire chicken outfit to go with it. My best friend at the time also went as a disco ball…so we were way cool. A chicken and a disco ball, you can’t beat that.

Yeah, I know most people were expecting me to talk about something really gruesome and bloody, but I think a giant talking chicken can be pretty scary to some people.

Do you have any collections, obsessions, or true loves?

DO I ever! I have admitted on several occasions that I am a huge fan girl…and anyone that knows me can tell you I am obsessed with Tolkien and LORD OF THE RINGS. Oh my goodness. I could talk about Middle Earth forever. And, as much as I love the books, I also freaking LOVE the movies…Peter Jackson definitely did Tolkien major justice. (I get so pumped when I watch them…in fact; I think I am going to do that as soon as I finish this interview!) I also collect merchandise from the films and have just about everything you can imagine…toys, collectible figurines, all the various dvds, posters, calendars, postcards, shirts, jewelry, and even a Legolas air freshener that I refuse to remove from my car.

And I love video games, especially RPGs like the Final Fantasy series or Chrono Cross. I think the storylines and characters in the various games are so interesting and even addicting in a way. Playing them is like watching a movie. You grow attached to certain characters and find yourself wanting to know more about them. I absolutely love that! I feel the same way about anime, too. Some of my favorite movies and television series are actually anime, like ESCAFLOWNE (Both Vision and A Girl in Gaea), AKIRA, SERIAL EXPERIMENTS LAIN, and yes…even SAILOR MOON. I used to have lots and lots of fan sites dedicated to various anime and video game characters, actually.

Oh. And I love anything to do with the Medieval Ages or the Renaissance. In fact, I adore Renaissance Faires. If I could live at a Ren Faire, I totally would.

What scares you in real life? 

As I said before…some people can be very scary without having to be a zombie or a vampire. I am also creeped out by Furbies. Sure, they may look all cute, but I have never gotten over how evil they can also be. I’m glad their popularity died out…because otherwise, they may have taken over the world!