He is the man that created King’s Maximum Overdrive into a short movie Minimum Overdrive.
SKSM: Could you start with telling me a bit about yourself? Who are you and what do you do?
Liam Engle: My name is Liam Engle, I’m 24 years old (but was about 22 when I made the movie) and I’m working to become a full-time director. I studied at the University in Aix-en-Provence, France, but I’ve been mostly trying to go my own way since I finished that. I’m currently putting together a showreel featuring bits of my movies for production companies to see.
SKSM: When did you make Minimum Overdrive? Can you tell me a little about the production? How much did it cost? How long did it take to film it?
Liam Engle: Minimum Overdrive was shot starting on August 3rd 2003 and the editing was completed in December of 2004. The movie took a long time to shoot since we were aiming for empty lots and places where there wouldn’t be any cars and we could safely film our chase. So we could only shoot on Sundays. The whole production basically got stretched out because of that.
The movie cost about the price of the two cars, about 70€ each, and that’s it (except for the obvious: Mini-DV tapes, food, gas.). So the movie didn’t really cost anything.
The entire movie was filmed “guerrilla-style” with basically just me operating the camera and Thierry, the actor, doing his thing. We sometimes had a third person come onboard to help out with the car, etc.
All of the special effects we’re done onset with basic tricks such as fishing wire, firecrackers covered in flour to get fiery explosions, etc.
SKSM: How come you picked Stephen King’s Maximum Overdrive to develop into a short movie? What is it in the story that you like so much?
Liam Engle: We didn’t exactly choose Maximum Overdrive. The movie started out more like a kind of spoof of Spielberg’s Duel. It’s only much later on in the production that we saw the similarities with Stephen King’s movie. The title itself is more of a coincidence than anything, believe it or not !
SKSM: Was there any funny or special moment when you made the movie that you would like to tell me about?
Liam Engle: The opening of the movie was shot in a vacant parking lot on a Sunday. But we needed to come back and get some shots of the escalator, which obviously only functions during workdays. So there we were, with our camera, just trying to steal shots really discreetly. But a security guard saw us and we just ran to the car, jumped in it and sped off, and the guy took his own jeep and basically chased us off the premises. That was fun.
Aside from that, the whole movie was fun since it involved so many little practical effects like breaking bottles, firecrackers, “stunts”, fire, etc.
SKSM: How does it feel that all the King fans out there can see your movie?
Liam Engle: It feels great! I just hope they think it’s worthy of getting the title “Stephen King short movie” !
SKSM: Has Stephen King seen it (and if so, what did he think about it)?
Liam Engle: I don’t think so ! But I hope he does.
SKSM: Do you have any plans for making more movies based on Stephen King’s stories? If you could pick – at least – one story to shoot, which one would it be and why?
Liam Engle: I don’t have any plans but if I could do one, I’d probably film “The Mist”. But I think Frank Darabont is already doing that one!
SKSM: Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. Is there anything else you want to say to the fans that read this interview?
Liam Engle: I hope you liked the short, and if you did, don’t hesitate to take a look at our “Behind the scenes” video! (URL: http://minimumoverdrive.avenueduweb.net/makingof.html)