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[WORLD OF DEATH] Interview With “Black Lullaby” Director Joshua Hoffine

Joshua Hoffine has been seen making the rounds on social media sites recently, inciting headlines such as “Photographer Dad Creates Horror Photos Together With His Daughters” (Bored Panda).  But Joshua has been dressing his children up and putting them in his spooky photographs since 2003, scaring us more than we ever thought a collection of still images could.  My print of Hoffine’s “Couch” hangs proudly over my desk, reminding me tenderly that no place is safe.  This week, Joshua’s BLACK LULLABY premieres on Bloody Disgusting’s World of Death, and we got to talk to him about his transition from photography to film, and got a little taste of his upcoming feature length project.  Check out Joshua’s terrifying work at and stay tuned this Thursday for the premiere of BLACK LULLABY on World of Death! 

– Jessie Robbins

What makes childhood fears such a great topic?

Because they are universal.  We can all remember being afraid of the monster under our bed, or hiding in our closet.  Everybody can relate to these basic fears.

We are born with certain inherent, instinctual fears – such as fear of the dark, fear of lurking predators, and the fear of being eaten.  As we grow older these fears lose their intensity.  But by positioning the viewer to identify with the child, I set them up to experience fear from their point of view, to feel their sense of vulnerability.

What drove your decision to take the leap from photography to film?

The desire to see my images move.

What were some of the challenges you faced moving from photography to film?

Post-production.  Shooting was fun.  But there was a steep learning curve afterwards.  I had to learn the basics of film editing – which is an art-form unto itself.  And I had to grapple with sound, which was – in many ways – even more difficult. 

Frustrations aside, however, it was a thrilling process.  I’m eager to do more.

You’ve worked with Bob Barber on the majority of your projects, what makes him such a great creature?

Bob is a sweetheart.  He has an amazing face, and an amazing body.  The camera loves him.  He is also a tough bastard, which is helpful.  The make-up process is strenuous, and my shooting environments tend to be physically uncomfortable – hot spaces without air conditioning, or cold spaces without heat.  Nobody has suffered for my art more than Bob Barber.

Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming film project?

I’m working on a full-length Horror movie.  The script is complete.  My lead actor has already been cast.  And I have assembled my core crew. 

The subject and details are still secret, but we are shooting a teaser trailer next month to show potential investors.  Visually, it is an extension of my work as a photographer.

What was it like working with the legendary Doug Jones on INNSMOUTH?

Doug Jones is, without exaggeration, the nicest person on the planet.  We all melted in his presence.  There is something magical about him.  I genuinely hope to work with him again someday.

What sort of new challenges are you facing with your upcoming film project?

So far, everything is coming together very smoothly.  I’ve recruited a small band of creative geniuses to help me.  With these guys on board, none of my ideas are out of reach.  The most daunting aspect is finding the money, without compromising my vision.  I want the film to be visually beautiful, but scary.  Super-scary.  That is my whole goal.

Will you be working with Anthony Kosar again for this film?

Absolutely.  He is already working on make-up designs.  The man is a tremendous talent.  Anthony and I mind-meld on set.  I truly believe that I’ve only scratched the surface of what he is capable of.  As we move into film, and larger budgets, I expect him to soar to new heights.  Me and my camera will be ready.

Below are some of Hoffine’s most recent works.  Make sure to check out his website tomorrow for the release of his newest image OPEN WINDOW!  Special thanks go out to Jessie Robbins for working on this interview.




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