The Flick Chicks

Interview with Oren Peli

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Interview with Oren Peli, writer/director of “Paranormal Activity”

By Terra King

Oren Peli is not a household name.....yet. As a matter of fact, unless you are in show business, you may not have heard of Oren at all.  If you've checked the internet for new films to see or watched clips of new films, you've no doubt seen ads for Peli's work.

"Paranormal Activity," which Oren wrote, directed, edited and produced, is a phenomenon, rarely, if ever seen in the film business. The film was made for $15,000, ($5,000 less than my SUV cost....used) and is being seen on major theater chain screens, to sell-out crowds.


Interview with Oren Peli, writer/director of “Paranormal Activity”

By Terra King

Oren Peli is not a household name.....yet. As a matter of fact, unless you are in show business, you may not have heard of Oren at all.  If you've checked the internet for new films to see or watched clips of new films, you've no doubt seen ads for Peli's work.

"Paranormal Activity," which Oren wrote, directed, edited and produced, is a phenomenon, rarely, if ever seen in the film business. The film was made for $15,000, ($5,000 less than my SUV cost....used) and is being seen on major theater chain screens, to sell-out crowds.
Paramount launched a brilliant campaign to get the film in front of general audiences. DEMAND IT! buttons where everywhere. Click on the button and you could add you voice to others in your city to get a screening of Oren's little movie that could. At the same time there were clips all over the internet, showing not only the film but scenes of the audience watching the film and "freaking out." The campaign was very successful. However, if the film sucked, that's as far as the film would have gone. Word of mouth and the internet would have killed it.
"Paranormal Activity" delivers everything it promises and more.

On October 24, 2009, I had the pleasure of interviewing Oren Peli.

T- I recently attended two award ceremonies for horror genre films. I asked everyone I talked to what they thought of "Paranormal Activity." Almost without exception their answer was, “It was a great movie, because it had a great story. It had no special effects, no frills, just great story.” Many also said, “It was a great shot in the arm for Indie films.

Oren-It was a good story. It did have a bit of CGI, not much. The film is mostly style and presentation.

T-Was there a script that had to be followed or was there some improvisation on the actor's part?

Oren-We gave Micah and Katie a generic, "this is what the scene is about," and they improvised the scene. Both are talented actors and did a great job.

T-How did you find Micah and Katie?

Oren-We had auditions in LA and San Diego. Katie had some amazing input at the audition. She was so natural.

T-The internet is abuzz with the rumors about other endings that the film had. Why did you choose the ending that it has?

Oren-We showed the film at some festivals and not everyone loved the ending we had. The ending that ended up in the movie was actually suggested by Steven Spielberg.
(Spielberg was connected to Dreamworks. At the time, Dreamworks was owned by Paramount. Spielberg screened the movies they were considering for distribution. Apparently, after watching the film Steven had a bit of his own "Paranormal Activity." He returned the film in a plastic bag and suggested the alternative ending which was used.)

T-Will the DVD have the alternative endings?

Oren-That is something we want in the DVD. Hopefully it will be.

T-What scares you Oren?


Oren-Invisible entities that can get you in your sleep when you are most vulnerable.

T-You are now working on your next film, "Area 51”.  What can you tell me about this film?

Oren-We aren't really talking about it. We prefer to keep it under wraps right now.

T- OK. What would you like the fans of your film to know.

Oren-I would like to thank them for the support they have given my film.


I would like to thank Oren Peli for his time. I would also like to thank Kyle for his work in getting this interview together.

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