Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Toronto International Film Festival Midnight Madness 2016 Adventures: A Photo Essay

Robert and Sarah Mitchell attended the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival and returned to the red carpet at the Midnight Madness programme. Here is a photo essay of their adventures. All photographs by Ian Goring unless otherwise noted.

                                    Interviewing Sunny Pang & Iko Uwais at the HEADSHOT
                                                   World Premiere September 9th, 2016

Interviewing Chelsea Islan & Julie Estelle at the HEADSHOT
World Premiere September 9th, 2016

Interviewing Kimo Stamboel & Timo Tjahanto at the HEADSHOT
World Premiere September 9th, 2016

Speaking with James Gunn at THE BELKO EXPERIMENT
World Premiere September 10th, 2016

In conversation with Sean Gunn at THE BELKO EXPERIMENT
World Premiere September 10th, 2016

Speaking with Director Greg McLean at THE BELKO EXPERIMENT
World Premiere September 10th, 2016

Director Adam Wingard at BLAIR WITCH World Premiere
September 11th, 2016

Talking with Director/Writer Julia Ducournau at the RAW/GRAVE
International Premiere September 12th, 2016

Having a moment with Morgan Spurlock at the World Premiere 
RATS September 13th, 2016

Talking with Gemma Arterton at the North American Premiere

Speaking with Director Colm McCarthy at the North American Premiere

Interviewing Director André Øvredal at the World Premiere
THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE Sept. 15th, 2016

 Speaking with Screenwriters Ian Goldberg & Richard Naing

Sharing a laugh with legendary Writer/Director Paul Schrader
North American Premiere DOG EAT DOG Sept 16th, 2016

Film Geek/Interviewer Robert Mitchell shakes hands with legendary 
Writer/Director Paul Schrader

Screenwriter Matthew Wilder speaks with Robert Mitchell aka Mr. Blue
North American Premiere DOG EAT DOG Sept. 16th, 2016

Robert Mitchell somehow talks with vengeful spirit Kayako
SADAKO vs KAYAKO September 17th, 2016

Almost cursed by Sadako
SADAKO vs KAYAKO Sept. 17th, 2016

Sarah Mitchell Robert Mitchell on the Midnight Madness Red Carpet
September 16th, 2016

Sarah Mitchell, Robert Mitchell with photographer Ian Goring
Sept. 16th, 2016 Photo By: Dominik Magdziak

Robert & Sarah Mitchell arrive at TIFF 2016
September 8th, 2016 Photo: Random Volunteer  

Having a "Bro" moment with Jason Momoa at the World Premiere
THE BAD BATCH Screen Grab From Video Files

Film Festival Nights Selfie

"You Either Eat The Shark or the Shark Eats You"
Survived TIFF 2016

Tuesday, January 3, 2017


As the new year begins here is a quick video diary looking back at my time at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival and in particular the Midnight Madness programme. It was great to be back in the city and seeing so many friends from around the world. As always the whirlwind and the buzz of the film festival was an amazing experience!

Friday, November 4, 2016

DOG EAT DOG Paul Schrader, Matthew Wilder Premiere Interviews

                                     Paul Schrader being interviewed by Robert Mitchell

                                              Screenwriter Matthew Wilder interview

Dog Eat Dog the new film by Paul Schrader (writer of Taxi Driver, Rolling Thunder, Raging Bull) had it's North American premiere at the 2016 Midnight Madness programme at the Toronto International Film Festival. Robert Mitchell was at the premiere and spoke with Mr. Schrader and screenwriter Matthew Wilder who adapted Edward Bunker's book for the screen. Here are those interviews.

Monday, October 31, 2016


                                                    Interviewing Vengeful Spirit Sadako

                                               Interviewing Vengeful Spirit Kayako

Robert Aaron Mitchell was on the red carpet at the closing night of the 2016 Midnight Madness programme for the film Sadako vs Kayako and somehow communicated with the vengeful spirits who arrived for the premiere. Here is those interviews!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Jason Blum & Steven Schneider Insidious Interview

This the forth in the ongoing series, Meeting the Producers of Midnight Madness 2010.
By Robert Aaron Mitchell

                                                                    Jason Blum 

                                                                     Steven Schneider

When the news broke that the producing team behind the hugely successful Paranormal Activity and the writing and directing team of hugely influential genre film Saw were teaming up to work on Insidious there was obvious excitement from the horror community. These heavyweights of genre cinema decided their partnership together would be best suited outside of the studio system in order to best help James Wan bring his vision to the big screen.

Let me introduce you to Jason Blum and Steven Schneider, part of the producing team behind Insidious.

Jason Blum opened Blumhouse Productions in the fall of 2000. Throughout his career, he has cultivated a reputation as a tireless advocate of independent film, and as a skilled producer adept at securing compelling new material and cutting-edge talent and forging deep relationships with studio executives, agents, writers, directors and actors. Since opening his own company, Blum has produced six feature films that demonstrate his unique taste and creative sensibilities. With keen business savvy, and a sharp eye for art house fare, he is constantly striving to expand the Blumhouse Productions slate of films.

Could you talk about how and why you formed your production company Blumhouse Productions?

Jason Blum WHY -I loved making movies and one of my dreams in life was always to have a single purpose company that does just that. HOW- I spent the first ten years of my career working for people who were very successful and I used that time to learn as much as I could always keeping in mind that eventually I wanted to work for myself.

Looking at your filmography you have recently become a producer in the past couple of years, how did you become a producer? What attracted you to the job?

Steven Schneider I grew up in New York City reading comic books and watching horror movies. After ten years (!) of grad school working on various degrees in philosophy and film theory, I found myself missing pop culture more and more. So I started writing and editing books on genre cinema - in particular horror movies from around the world. But to that point I'd still never thought about transitioning into film production once. Then, in 2002, Roy Lee (producer of The Ring, The Grudge, The Departed, etc.) reached out to me because he'd seen some of my books and wanted to know if I had any ideas for horror remakes. After this initial phone call, things immediately started clicking into place. My long-term girlfriend had already begun a successful acting career, and I just wasn't feeling excited about my dissertation work anymore. So later that year, Katheryn and I made the move to Hollywood, and I've been producing full-time ever since.

I've read that you are a strong advocate for independent film. What draws you to producing projects outside of the studio system?

Jason Blum I like making movies for studios and independently equally as much but the two jobs are entirely different. Making studio movies the Producer for the most part answers to the studio first and goes from there. Independent movies allow the producer only to help the director realize his vision without any other factors. Both are fun complicated jobs.

What attracted you to producing Insidious? How difficult was the financing of the project?

Steven Schneider On the heels of Paranormal Activity's success last year, my partners on that movie (Jason Blum and Oren Peli) and I entered into a slate deal with Alliance Films. (The head of Alliance, Charles Layton, had previously worked with Jason at Miramax for years, so they already had a good relationship.) The basic idea of the Alliance "Haunted Movies" slate is to make a number of very scary horror movies on very low budgets; and to work with amazing filmmakers who are excited to trade bells & whistles for creative freedom. As for Insidious, James Wan and I sat down after Paranormal came out, and as soon as he pitched me the idea, I was in. Loved the concept, loved James' vision for it, and couldn't wait to get started. Fortunately Jason and Oren agreed, and Alliance was totally supportive. Insidious is the first Haunted Movies production, and the Paranormal Activity-Saw combination is lethal!

What for you are some of the keys to making a package to present to investors and/studio executives?

Jason Blum There are only 4: Script Director Cast Budget If your budget is low enough and you script, cast, actors are compelling even now there is money out there to make your movies.

What unique challenges did you face in bringing Insidious to the screen?

Steven Schneider I think everyone involved would agree that the biggest challenge with Insidious was just making sure we could help enable James and Leigh (Whannell) achieve their amazing, ambitious vision for the movie given the relatively miniscule (by Hollywood standards) budget. But with the help of an incredible, passionate crew of true professionals - including Albert Cho, Aaron Sims, John Leonetti, Jeanette Brill, Rick Osako, Annie McCarthy, Jennifer and Tom Spence, Kristin Burke, and all of our wonderful actors (Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne Barbara Hershey, Lin Shaye and many others) - we were fortunately able to achieve it. At least we think we have - you tell us after the premiere!

Originally appeared 09/12/10 Midnight Madness Blog

Monday, October 17, 2016


On Tuesday September 13, 2016 Morgan Spurlock's latest documentary RATS premiered at the Midnight Madness programme at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Robert was on the red carpet and spoke with Morgan about the film which Mr. Spurlock has described as a "horror documentary" Robert also spoke exterminator Ed Sheehan who has been in pest control for over fifty years. Here are those interviews. It was RATASTIC!


Monday, October 10, 2016

HEADSHOT: World Premiere Interviews with Directors Kimo Stamboel & Timo Tjahjanto

                          Timo Tjahjanto, Kimo Stamboel interviewed by Robert A. Mitchell

Headshot the new film from Kimo Stamboel and Timo Tjahjanto aka The "Mo" Brothers premiered Setember 9th, 2016 at the midnight madness programme at the Toronto International Film Festival. Robert was at the premiere and spoke with Kimo and Timo about their latest film.