Rob Savage: Host, Dashcam and adapting Stephen King’s The Boogeyman

Rob Savage: Host, Dashcam and adapting Stephen King’s The Boogeyman

Director Rob Savage (pictured below) takes us behind the wheel of Dashcam and teases his adaptation of Stephen King’s The Boogeyman…

Host was a huge hit. Who’s come out as being the film’s most unlikely fan?

Probably Elijah Wood. I think he was one of the first celebrities to Tweet about Host before it really blew up. There was this time where it was teetering on the precipice and doing well for Shudder and horror fans were liking it – and that was more than we ever imagined would happen. The cast and crew are all on this WhatsApp group and when Elijah Wood tweeted about it, it just blew up because we felt it legitimised things. It felt impossible that he’d be able to see this stupid movie we made in our living rooms.

Elijah Wood Tweeted about enjoying Host…

Was there any pressure or an ‘imposter syndrome’ feeling when working on Dashcam?

Big time. I’m a very anxious person but I think that’s why I’m good at making horror movies; I live my life in a constant state of anxiety. Every single time I start a new movie, I feel like an imposter afresh – but I think it keeps you sharp. It makes you not rest on your laurels.

Did you immediately know what kind of movie you wanted to do next?

Dashcam was actually a pre-pandemic story that me and Jed (Shepherd, writer) came up with. When Jason Blum asked ‘What do you want to do next?’ I knew I wanted to do something that would use a lot of the same tools as Host; something we could do fast. This was around the time of the US election and everyone getting angry and sick of lockdowns. When we made Host, everyone was clapping for the NHS and there was a much different vibe. When we made Dashcam, it felt like everyone was irritable and yelling at each other. We wanted to make a shouty movie.

Rob Savage wanted to use a lot of the same tools for Dashcam as he did for Host.

What horror films inspired Dashcam?

 The big one we shamelessly stole from was Timo Tjahjanto and Gareth Evans’ VHS II segment Safe Haven. We wanted the same mania that that short film hits in its finale. Evil Dead II was another big one and we were talking about Hellbound: Hellraiser II and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. Host is a classier, more simple movie but I love those 80s films that had these batshit black comedy sequels that are so over-the-top – like when these low budget filmmakers suddenly get a lot of money and try to cram in all these gags, gore, effects and stunts.

You’re adapting Stephen King’s The Boogeyman with David Dastmalchien. How are you putting your stamp on King’s world?

 I’m three movies in so I don’t quite know what my stamp is but I developed the script for a couple of years and it felt like I could do something that I hadn’t done before. It feels very true to King’s voice and to the short story but takes off into a new direction. We built on the mythology in a way that’s very unique and David is mind blowingly good. It’s the best he’s ever been – and that’s saying something.

Dashcam is in cinemas 3 June and on digital download from 6 June. Read our interview with the cast of Host here.


 You can watch Host on Prime Video Channel – Shudder