Producer Roxanne Benjamin was one of the driving forces behind the V/H/S/ franchise, a trilogy of found-footage anthology movies which showcased unconnected terror tales by the likes of Ti West (House of the Devil), Adam Wingard (You’re Next), David Bruckner (The Signal), and the filmmaking collective Radio Silence. But for the new horror anthology film Southbound (out in theaters Feb. 5) Benjamin and her fellow producers — Brad Miska, Chris Harding, Greg Newman, and the Radio Silence crew — took a different tack, deciding that the movie’s segments should both be filmed in a more traditional filmmaking style and dovetail into each other. The result is a quintet of hellish yarns which take place on and around a merciless stretch of desert highway.
“After producing a couple of anthologies, and seeing a bunch more come out in the past few years, Southbound was an attempt to make the anthology format feel interesting and new again,” Benjamin explains. “We wanted to make a film that felt more cohesive, and unified, that ideally you wouldn’t know had multiple directors by watching it. We wanted it to feel like one world, from different viewpoints, that shifted seamlessly between the different storylines like a traditional narrative. It also came together through wanting to work with these guys again, and all of us being drawn to this idea of the desolation of the open road, and long road trips leading to intense self-examination and reflectiveness. Basically it’s an emotional existential crisis horror movie. Ha!”
The lineup of Southbound directors features Bruckner, Radio Silence, Patrick Horvath (Entrance, The Pact II), and Benjamin herself who oversaw a segment titled “Siren.”
“All of our stories deal with guilt in some way, and karmic retribution,” she says. “‘Siren’ follows three girls in a tour van getting in over their heads, but it’s the lead singer’s past actions that really drive the personal horror that they’re all experiencing.”
Southbound will be available via iTunes and on VOD, Feb. 9. You can exclusively see the film’s new poster above.