Ellen Dubin Talks About Dead Before Dawn The First Canadian 3D Zombie Movie

Recently I got to speak with Ellen Dubin about her work on the film Dead Before Dawn. Ellen has worked in such genre classic as Lexx, The Collector, and numerous other film, television, and game projects.

What can you tell us about the new 3D Zombie film you have coming up and how you became involved?

I am absolutely thrilled to be a part of DEAD BEFORE DAWN -the first 3D zombie movie ever made in Canada. I got a call when I was in Los Angeles working on a video game – Guild Wars 2- that I had been offered the role because the producers were big fans of my work in NAPOLEON DYNAMITE. I had never met them , never read for them and a few days later I found myself heading on a plane to Niagara Falls, Ontario Canada. Love the way April Mullen and Tim Doiron did that- They just offered the role to me. How rare is that!

Zombies are huge right now so I was so excited to be a part of this cast of fabulous actors.And one of my heroes Christopher Lloyd plays my father!!!!! They have also added to the zombie legend by creating zemon characters- 1/2 zombie, 1/2 demon- all zemon! You will have to see the movie to see what these unique characters are about.

What can you tell us about your character?

I play a very sweet , doting old-fashioned type of mother ( almost a throwback to a Leave it To Beaver 1950’s type of mom) who becomes possessed and turns into an evil vindictive zemon.
I am the mother of the male lead played by the wonderful Devon Bostick from the DIARY OF A WIMPY KID franchise.

Any concerns about filming in 3D as compared to traditional filming?

I love a challenge so my only concern was making sure I was focused and very specific in my work. It is almost like working with green screen techniques – in that the work has to be very accurate . Also would hate to see myself so big and blown up in 3D but I will stand at the back of the theater when I see my huge image on the screen.
I had a riot throwing things at the camera and staring down the barrel of the lens. Fun to thrust things forward to the camera so when the audience sees it , the 3D experience is enhanced by our actions.

Are you a fan of horror and what can you tell us about the cast and characters in the film?

Hey I was afraid of the wicked witch in THE WIZARD OF OZ up until a few years ago and that isn’t even a horror movie. I appreciate the genre but am always looking through my hand to watch most of these movies so I don’t see a lot of them because I am a big chicken.

The cast is an impressive line up of some hot young actors. Martha Macisaac from SUPERBAD , Brandon Jay McLaren from THE KILLING, Rossif Sutherland, Kyle Schmid, April Mullen and Tim Doiron. And of course Devon Bostick who plays my son and the incomparable Christopher Lloyd who plays my father. It is a comedy / horror/adventure movie.

What are some of your favorite horror films and how does one prepare for a film like this?

I don’t go to see a lot of horror films but if I do- I love films that you don’t see the blood and gore- More in the old style of thriller/horror like Alfred Hitchcock movies. It is what you don’t see that is frightening. I still get scared by the EXORCIST.

I am not a huge fan of the SAW chain of torture porn movies not because they aren’t well done but because the combination of violence and horror is something I find hard to watch and take. PARANORMAL ACTIVITY was well done on a low budget!

I am a big fan of the new AMC series THE WALKING DEAD – it is so well acted and well done.
I am also a fan of the new show AMERICAN HORROR STORY on the FX channel- it gives me the creeps!

The only preparation I did for the film was watch SHAUN OF THE DEAD because I knew it combined zombies with comedy so I wanted to see the way the director and actors handled the combo platter of comedy and horror. Great movie, by the way.

And then I dove in with all of my theater and dance background when it came to creating the zemon character and had a fabulous time doing it. I am a great screamer from all my voice work so I added that to the mix. One perfect evil crazy zemon!
Great great fun!