The Wishing Well – Interview with Filmmaker Merlyn Roberts

The final of our Vampiir Bitez shorts is The Wishing Well by Merlyn Roberts and Steve Lyons of Wyldewood.

Wishing-Well-Entity-1A deep and brooding film about grief’ loss and the supernatural forces that lurk within the Earth The Wishing Well’s ability to shock really creeps up on the viewer. Merlyn Roberts tells us about it and how it got made:

I’ve been making films on and off for the last 15 years. They all fall under the banner of horror or fantasy. In the last 7 years I’ve been making shorts with my long time friend Steven Lyons under the name Wyldewood  productions.
Merlyn Roberts
Merlyn Roberts

The Wishing Well was our second project and we really wanted to do something special. However money was typically short so instead of writing something and then deciding where would get props, cast and budget, we decided to make something with what we already had at our disposal.So Steve was cast as the protagonist and I played the evil spirit which haunts him, the main location was my family house and Steve’s motorbike features prominently! We spent several weeks meeting up in pubs writing various plot ideas down on beer mats and really thinking about what scared us personally. Neither of us had any formal film training, which was probably a good thing in some ways. I’ve always been into SFX and prop making so I had a lot of fun creating the things we needed for the film. Steve edited the film and created a very effective score, which really helps to raise the tension throughout. The film took over a year from start to finish as we had a huge learning curve to experience, but I’m still happy with what we managed to achieve with a couple of hundred pounds and limited resources.

‘Steve and I are both very interested in the occult, history, legends and the ancient heritage of the British Isles and growing up in London and reading all the local ghost stories had a profound influence on us and ultimately the Wishing Well. The story, like everything else we’ve written up until now came out in a very natural way almost as if it wrote itself. We have the ability to understand each other concepts and ideas without much difficulty and seem to balance each other well.The basic concept of the film is the idea that supernatural forces centre on places that have a certain earth energy or where a dramatic event has taken place, but over time things quieten down and become semi-dormant. Steve’s character has recently lost his wife and the energy created by his grief and loss of will to live awakens the resting evil. While digging a hole in the garden he unwittingly breaks a magical seal and starts the clock to his demise.’

Merlyn and Steve are currently working on a Serurta, an epic feature length story of Bronze Age survival packed with mythological creatures, spirits, demons, headhunters and fearsome gods from Britain’s past, Keep watching the Hothouse for more news on this.


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