We caught up with Neil Jackson and asked him about
Blade the Series as well as his new film, The Passage.
TheBigBadWolf: Tell us about your new film, The Passage.
Jackson: It's a thriller set in Morocco about an American
man who falls for a Moroccan woman. The couple quickly become scorned
for their relationship due to Islamic custom until their very lives are
I got the idea for the film when shooting Alexander in Marrakech, the
idea never came into fruition until summer 2005 when I was living in LA.
I was at home with my room mate, Mark Heller (who directed The Passage),
and we were talking about horror movies and what made good one. I then
told him the creepy idea I had had 2 years earlier. He loved it. We pitched
it to a producer friend of our and 1 year later we were filming it. It
was an incredibly fast turn around, and we ended up attracting the most
amazing talent to the project from cinematographers, line producers and
costume to the cast themselves, and the post production team.
TheBigBadWolf: Who are the cast members?
Neil Jackson: Stephen Dorff
and I play friends Luke and Adam. A new actress, Sarai Givaty, plays the
lead girl, Zahra.
TheBigBadWolf: How long did it take you to write
Neil Jackson: It was a hard
script to write. I had the main idea or device for the ending. We talked
long and hard about what makes movies scary and I am not a fan of gore
for gores sake. I love hitchcock and the horrors of the seventies that
explored suspense. With this end device in place I then had to work backwards
to find the script. A little like having the punch line and finding the
joke from there.
TheBigBadWolf: Any idea of a release date, yet?
Neil Jackson: Nope. we're
in post production now and the film looks amazing. Score is added in April
from the composer of "300"'s score, so we're excited about that.
TheBigBadWolf: Is there an official site for
the movie yet?
Neil Jackson: Not yet, but
I will notify you as soon as there is.
TheBigBadWolf: You have something in common
with the lead actor for The Passage, Stephen Dorff. You have both been
a thorn in Blade's side. Have you and Stephen Dorff talked Blade at all?
Neil Jackson: Yeah. When
we first met we talked about it. He said that he watched the pilot of
the TV show and enjoyed it, but didn't realize that was me until the day
TheBigBadWolf: Speaking of Blade, what
are your thoughts on how the project left off?
Neil Jackson: All of us
involved in it were both surprised and disappointed. We all wanted the
show to be a success and also believed that we had the right ingredients
to make it so. And the support that was given to us by everyone at Comic
Monsters was so en heartening. Thank you.
TheBigBadWolf: Do you have any ill feelings toward Spike TV for
letting the show hang in the air for so long before deciding not to pick
Neil Jackson: No. Its a
business and they simply made a business decision. I personally think
it was the wrong decision, and they currently have nothing on their
schedule, so it that would support my opinion. The show did have a shaky
start, with great ratings for the pilot that steadily dropped off as the
show continued. The writing however improved and the entire show seemed
to find its feet around episodes 5 and 6. From there on the viewing figures
started to grow, but it was a case of too little too late for Spike.
TheBigBadWolf: Is there still hope of Blade the
Series making a comeback?
Jackson: Not really. there is the glimmer of hope that
lessens every day we hear nothing.
TheBigBadWolf: Do you still keep in touch with
Jessica, Jill, Nelson and Sticky?
Neil Jackson: Yep, they're
all doing great. I had my birthday recently and we all met up for drinks,
TheBigBadWolf: What was your favorite episode
Neil Jackson: Episode 10,
Marcus' flashback sequence. The chance to put more humanity into that
character was fun, not to mention finally getting to beat up on someone.
The whole episode came out very well I thought.
TheBigBadWolf: Have you ever been out eating
somewhere and a Blade fan approached you? Any interesting stories, do
you remember the first time?
Neil Jackson: It's happened
a few times. It's normally just a bark across a room of "Blade Rocks"
or "Yo, Marcus!".
TheBigBadWolf: What would you have liked to become of Marcus
Neil Jackson: We had already talked
about the next season. We all wanted to see Marcus lose that rigid control
of his and start getting lost in his own sense of power and grandeur.
I know that seems a little more towards the Deacon Frost side of things,
but we would have made that very unique. Overall there would have been
a lot more fighting for Marcus as he now had enemies on all sides of him.
I had trained very hard in Vancouver for the fight scenes, and was very
much looking forward to having a few more throw downs with Blade.
TheBigBadWolf: Anything else you would like to say in regards
to Blade the Series?
Neil Jackson: Thank you to everyone
who watched and supported the show, and for your continued support.
TheBigBadWolf: Thanks for taking the time to do an interview Neil,
it was a pleasure to speak with you again. We look forward to your film,
THE PASSAGE. You can check out Neil's MYSpace page here
or visit his website NeilJackson.net.
Talk about this interview on the BLADE