PJ Woodside and Steve Hudgins are the founders of Big Biting Pig Productions. As the creators of ten horror films, Hudgins and Woodside have created an impressive portfolio of indie films. Though they are both incredibly busy, they were awesome enough to allow me to interview them about their careers and their upcoming film, It Lives in the Attic, for ScifiPulse.
Nicholas Yanes: Growing up, what were your favorite movies?
Steve Hudgins: Jaws, Halloween, The Shining, but I wasn’t just a horror freak, growing up I was also a big fan of movies like The Deer Hunter, Scarface, and practically anything that had Gene Wilder in it!
PJ Woodside: I was actually more of a reader than a movie watcher. Amityville Horror scared me so much I had to sleep with the light on. In the theater, Carrie is the film I most remember having an impact on me. I love that it has a female character as the lead – and that she is both victim and monster. I’ve tried to do something similar with characters in my movies.
Yanes: On this note, what movie do you think inspired you two to pursue a career in film production?
Hudgins: I got started as a filmmaker on a bit of a whim. I think my inspiration was more so because I’ve always enjoyed telling stories & movies are one medium for doing that.
Woodside: I’ve always been a writer, but thought movie-making was only for people in LA. Then that changed, and an opportunity came along to make a movie. It was a little crazy, but now, after 10 years, it looks like we were ahead of the curve.
Yanes: When did you two decide to found Big Biting Pig Productions? Was there a specific business goal for creating Big Biting Pig Productions?
Hudgins: I don’t think we started out with huge aspirations. I think the attitude at the start was to make a movie, and then try to get it out to as large of an audience as we could from there.
Woodside: We didn’t stop to look ahead. We just did. Steve was really the driving force behind it; I just got involved because I like acting and being creative, and there weren’t a lot of other opportunities for me to do that here in the rural Midwest.
Yanes: Additionally, why did you two decide to work together? Given how difficult it is to find good people to work with, when did you both realize you had found a great business partner?
Hudgins: Before Big Biting Pig Productions, I had teamed up with a couple of guys to make a feature film. I wrote & co-directed the movie. Once filming was complete, we needed someone with editing experience, of which none of us had. PJ and I were friends who had performed together multiple times on stage and I knew she had editing experience so I approached her to see if she’d be interested in helping with editing.
It was after that movie that I branched off on my own and created Big Biting Pig Productions and it was a no-brainer to see if PJ would be interested in coming on board with me. The rest is history.
Woodside: What Steve said. J
Yanes: So, Big Biting Pig Productions, why was this selected as the name of the company?
Hudgins: I felt like the production company should have a memorable name. Once someone heard it, I didn’t want them to forget it!
Woodside: I felt it was important to have a visual image. Too many production company names just go in one ear and out the other. Ours is too visual to forget.
Yanes: Your latest film is “It Lives in the Attic.” What was the inspiration for this movie?
Hudgins: I like telling stories in ways that are different from formula. I thought it would be interesting to do something of a haunted house story, but that focused on how people were affected after they left the house. The result is this very wild and crazy movie.
Woodside: That one is all Steve. I have no idea what goes on in that sick brain of his.
Yanes: When developing this story, what were some concepts or characters that took on a life of their own?
Hudgins: All of the main characters probably fit that description. But I’d single out the character that I play, Barney. He’s a trip.
Woodside: Definitely Club Fun. That was one of the most disturbing, fun, psychedelic, crazy filming weekends ever in the history of Big Biting Pig.
Yanes: Horror movies tend to have stories of odd stuff that took place during film production. What were some strange things to happen when making “It Lives in the Attic”?
Hudgins: We’ve had some very odd occurrences while filming some of our previous movies, but nothing too strange with this one. The oddest stuff with this movie is in front of the camera!
Woodside: The unexpected room full of toilets was pretty strange.
Hudgins: Ah yes, the toilet room. When scouting the location for the Club Fun Scene in It Lives in the Attic we happened upon this hallway full of toilets. I had to add a scene involving that into the script! It was fitting for the oddity that Club Fun is.
Yanes: When people finish watching “It Lives in the Attic,” what do you hope they take away from the movie?
Hudgins: To be thoroughly disturbed….in an entertaining kind of way.
Woodside: To want to see all the rest of our movies, because we always throw a wrench into the works somewhere along the way. We don’t do formula, that’s for sure.
Yanes: Finally, what are some projects that you two are working on that people should look forward to?
Hudgins: For the first time since we started doing this, we’re taking a year off. After releasing 10 movies in 9 years, we need a little breather.
But as I mentioned, we have 10 movies out there, most are free to watch on Amazon Prime. So if you haven’t seen them all yet, be sure to check out our website.
Woodside: My next movie plot is already brewing, but slowly. It’s been nice to just have a spring and summer with no pressing deadlines. We’ll be back – in a year or so. In the meantime, you can catch up on our back catalog!