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DONALD F. GLUT


You may not know Donald F. Glut's name but you've certainly seen something he's been involved in.

Having worked in the media industry (film, television, music and publication) since 1966, Don has amassed quite the resume of entertainment industry work. Starting as a writer for Modern Monsters magazine, Don soon moved on to work as a freelance writer and wrote episodes of such Saturday morning cartoons as Transformers, X-Men and even Disney's Duck Tales. Don also wrote comicbook scripts (such as Captain America), has published over 35 novels and even wrote the novel adptation of Empire Strikes Back.

Don has also gotten a reputation for being an authority on dinosaurs and has made numerous lectures and television apperances on the subject (he was even the "dinosaur consultant" on 1993's Carnosaur).

Currently, Don is the head of Frontline Entertainment a banner under which he has directed the cult classic Dinosaur Valley Girls and the erotic horror films The Erotic Rites Of Countess Dracula and, most recently, The Mummy's Kiss.

We had an opportunity to ask Don questions about his current projects and what's in the future.


What are you doing right now?

At present, I am very busy primarily doing two things - finishing up the third supplement in my Dinosaurs: The Encyclopedia series of reference books, and doing pre-production for our new movie Countess Dracula's Orgy of Blood.

How did you hook up with effects man John Carl Buechler (who created the mummy for Mummy's Kiss?

I met John through mutual friends about twenty-five years ago. John and I have been friends ever since. We were supposed to work together (he directing, me co-writing) back in the 1980s on a werewolf project - that never got made - called Shape-Shifter. We did work together on Roger Corman's Carnosaur. It was my first on-screen movie credit (Dinosaur Consultant), thanks to John's hiring me. But I've always liked John and his work, plus he's a really nice guy. So, when the mummy project came up, he was the first person I thought of to do our horror effects. I hope we work together again on the sequels, especially since it will be the same mummy character in all three movies.

Most of your films, while erotic horror films, tend to show respect for older horror films and have a tongue-in-cheek approach. Do you find that this helps broaden your audience for this type of movie?

Yes. As you can probably guess by reading my novels and short stories and also seeing my movies, I really like the old classic - and also not so classic - horror movies of the past, especially the Universals of the 1930s and 1940s, and the later Hammers. I try to work little "homages" into those films. In our latest, The Mummy's Kiss, for example, there are numerous references to the old Universal mummy movies. The opening music is from Swan Lake, as in the Boris Karloff Mummy (also Dracula and Murders in the Rue Morgue). There's a line where our sorceress character says, "I like to be touched," a direct reference to Karloff as Imhotep stating the negative version. Our Whemple University came from one of the characters in the Karloff movie. Even our Professor Carter Moore comes from Universal -actor Dennis Moore, the leading man of The Mummy's Curse. Given all that, I think our company, Frontline Entertainment, has hit on a winning combination for doing these movies - campy/sexy horror done on a very low budget, but done as good as we can make them, with real plots and characters, and done with love, passion and respect, both for what we're doing and for what's gone before. And it pays off. These films are doing quite well, and Erotic Rites and Mummy's Kiss are consistently within Amazon.com's "best-seller" sales rank.

Are any plans for a serious straightforward horror film in your future? And if so, what kind?

Oh, sure. I have some "straight" (do you mean serious or non-lesbian?) horror movies, but they all require bigger budgets than we've been able to raise - and raising just the small amount needed for the movies we are making is nightmarishly hard. For now, we've found a niche where we can make fast profits, and also have a lot of fun doing these kinds of projects. So, at least for the present, why rock the boat?

Dinosaur Valley Girls is quite the cult classic now; are you surprised at just how well-known and the following it has?

To be honest (and at the risk of sounding snotty or pompous), it was made to be a "cult classic. That was in the intent from the get-go. And I knew from the start that, despite its inevitable quality (or lack thereof), its title alone would eventually warrant it cult-film status.

What would you say your most embarassing moment during filming as a director was?

Embarrassing? Probably when, several times during the shooting of Dinosaur Valley Girls, I yelled out "Cut!" when I meant to say "Action!" I must be a masochist of sorts, because I included those moments among the bloopers on our documentary The Making of Dinosaur Valley Girls, which can be seen on the DVD.

What advice do you have for the young filmmaker?

The biggest - move out to Southern California, where all the real movie action takes place, and don't look at film-making as a "hobby" or "second job." It's your day job, plain and simple.

You also write novels and other literature; what do you find suits your visions better film or paper?

I enjoy, perhaps more than anything regarding my work, making movies. I really don't enjoy writing novels or short stories that much, especially novels. I find writing novels more difficult than writing screenplays, and more time-consuming. There also isn't the physical activity and also thrill of seeing your project come together from start to finish, with all the changes and compromises one must make along the way. With a novel, you just sit there and write the thing, and all the visuals are in your head. With a movie there are all the phases - the writing, casting, location scouting, shooting, the post-production, etc. - culminating in a finished product including actors, sets, music, special effects and all the rest.

What's next?

Next up, to start shooting in just a few weeks, is Countess Dracula's Orgy of Blood, our first sequel to The Erotic Rites of Countess Dracula. We've been talking to Paul Naschy about doing a guest-starring role, but he may be beyond our budget. If he's not in this movie, I hope we'll get him for a future project, as I'm a big fan of his. After that will come a sequel to The Mummy's Kiss, then a campy/erotic werewolf movie, followed by a movie combining the characters from the Countess Dracula and Mummy "franchises." After that, I have enough projects ready to go to keep Frontline moving ahead for a few more years, without even having to think of anything "new." Unfortunately, raising money - even while our movies make money - is very difficult. In fact, that's the only phase of this operation that keeps holding us back -- finding investors. If you can refer any our way...


If you'd like more info on Donald, his movies and how to get them go visit his official webpage or Frontline Entertainment.

Film images are by Frontline Entertainment; Donald's portrait is by Donald F. Glut.