Thursday, September 4, 2014

Chris Dowling: Christian Horror Writer?

An interview with Chris Dowling, writer of "The Remaining."
Chris Dowling on the set of "Produce." (C. Dowling)
One of the most pumped up movies about the rapture and end times is coming to theaters this weekend and chances are you’ve never even heard of it. The film is called The Remaining and it is not your father’s A Thief in the Night movie.

Affirm films has been experimenting with their faith-based films division, trying hard not to do a “bait and switch” on the audiences attending these films. People who went to see Mom’s Night Out saw a true comedy. People who saw When the Game Stands Tall saw a true football film. Now, those who see The Remaining will see a true horror film. Not an axe-murderer movie with a message, but something just as scary.

“It has everything people love about horror films but with some meat,” says Chris Dowling, the co-writer for the film. “Most horror films, you walk out of the theater and completely forget about. You and your buddies are already talking about if you want to grab coffee or how late Buffalo Wild Wings is open by the time you hit the parking lot. The Remaining is not that movie. It stays with you. It’s a conversation starter. You don’t just walk away from it.”


An interview with Chris Dowling, writer of "The Remaining."
(Affirm Films)
I got a chance to talk Chris earlier this week about the project and was pleasantly surprised by what I learned. While similar in concept to other “rapture movies” like the upcoming re-make of Left Behind, this one attempts to stand out among the crowd with some impressive names attached to it. The movie is written and directed by Casey La Scala (executive director of Donnie Darko and A Walk to Remember), Doug Emmett (cinematographer of Paranormal Activity 4) and Brian Stultz (production designer for Iron Man 3).


The Remaining begins with a group of friends attending a wedding when a series of catastrophic events rains on their parade. People suddenly drop to their death with no explanation. In a matter of minutes, the group goes from celebrating to scrambling for safety. Has Mother Nature gone mad or is there a more sinister enemy behind the death and destruction?

The supernatural thriller centers on the extreme and horrific circumstances surrounding the biblical accounts of the end times, but not in a way that most of us are familiar with. So, how is The Remaining different from other end time films?