Back when Divine Exploitation was a xeroxed zine I did quite a few issues. This particular issue had Linnea on the cover. Articles by Christopher Jarmick, Mark Engle and the late great Larry Stanley. It also had an interview with the one and only Jay Lind. Jay has relocated to the Philippines and is waist deep in a vampire thriller THE BRIDE WORE RED.
This is years before that and I present it electronically for the first time.
Divine Exploitation - Okay, first question; How do you go from counterintelligence work to making cool, low budget films?
Jay Lind - I majored in film and theater in college, Salisbury State University with an eye to acting and directing. Mostly on stage, actually. I had some really great teachers, Leland Starnes who was my faculty adviser taught me a lot about acting and theatrical direction. Jim Welsh was a big influence on my film work and my ideas and philosophy as far as what makes a film work and why I should make certain projects. He instilled in me the idea that I had to do more than just entertain that, if I wanted to be an artist, I had to ask questions and do movies that were about something, not just a way to kill two hours. And Leland Starnes gave me the confidence to try. To takes chances as an actor, a writer and director. Because that's what it is about. Taking chances, asking questions and telling stories. If you fail, well then it's better to fail at something noble than to succeed in adding more shit to the big pile of it that passes for entertainment these days. (Backstreet Boys, NSync, I'm looking in your direction. Martin Lawrence, you know who you are.
DE - If you were given a huge sum of money but weren't allowed to have final cut, would you still make the film?
JL - Only is I walked off with at least a million of it and it was a porno AND I didn't have to put my name on it. I'm an artist, but I'm not an idiot.
DE - What was your first film?
JL - As a professional, my first film was Sangre Songes (Dreams of Blood). It was my first attempt to make my script, Valerie, and starred my future wife, Maria Pechukas, Debbie Rochon and Amy Lynn Baxter. It was about forty minutes, n dialogue and really sexy and beautiful. My first amateur or student film was Library: Banned in Latvia. I did that with my best friend, John Wright, for a high school film contest, which we won.
DE - Which do you consider to be your best film?
JL - I hope it hasn't been made yet. So far, To Dance With Death. The new one, Shadow Of The Demon might be when I finish editing. We'll see...
DE - Who would you say your heroes/influences are?
JL - How many pages do I have? Kate Bush, James Whale, Francis Ford Coppola, John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, Ray Davies, William DeKonig, Joe Heller, Austin Pendleton, Peter Jackson, Bobby Kennedy, Bobby Seals, Huey Newton, Lee Starnes, Jim welsh, Val Lewton, MST#K, Cameron Crowe, Terrence Fisher, Terrence Young, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Barry Levenson and, of course, Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee.
DE - For the film, To Dance With Death; where was that filmed?
JL - Salisbury and Ocean City Maryland and Millsboro, Delaware.
DE - Were the locals good about the shoot or were they big pains in the you know what?
JL - For the most part they were fantastic.
DE - Brinke Stevens does a full nude outdoor shot in the film. Did you just wait until the neighborhood was asleep for the night, or did you have a crowd like when George Romero did his 'nude zombie shot' for Night of the Living Dead?
JL - Well, Brinke's pretty cool about her body and there were times when there were people close enough to see if they wanted to, but that scene, no. we didn't get to it until about 3AM, but I don't think we would have had any problems with Brinke shooting it earlier if we had gotten that far along on the schedule.
DE - Besides money, what is the hardest part of making a film?
JL - editing. It's just sooooo dull. No, maybe preproduction. That's pretty dull, too. Okay, a tie. editing and preproduction. Or waiting for the release...
DE - What's the easiest?
JL - Definitely working with the actors. I love directing actors, creating the characters, coaching them, falling in love with them, fighting with them.
DE -What's your opinion of Linnea Quigley?
JL - I love Linnea. she's one of my favorite people in the world along with Brinke Stevens and Debbie Rochon. And my best buds Austin Pendleton and Al Ryan, A very talented writer, cameraman and director from New Jersey.
Linnea is extremely hot. A very beautiful girl, a wonderfully talented actress and a natural comedienne with a great sense of timing and mischief. And she sings and plays the guitar! What more can a man ask for in a woman. Plus, she looks great naked and that's the only true test of beauty.
DE - Did anything odd come out of shooting To Dance With Death?
JL - Well, there was the night that spiders decided to crawl down the backs of Brinke and Victoria when we were shooting a scene under this incredibly old tree. That was pretty odd. The weird part is that they stayed in character and that's the take we ended up using. Brinke, well all then girls were so incredibly professional. It was wonderful to be on that shoot. I loved every one of them. They made me look so smart and talented the way they did their roles. They, Brinke, Victoria, Kim and Kirsten make the movie what it is.
DE - What is your dream project?
JL - There are a couple. There's a movie I've tried to shoot a couple of times that I'm actually going to get to make next year. Valerie. I tried to make it years ago with Maria Pechukas in the lead and Debbie Rochon as her best friend. Financing fell through so many times it was ridiculous. But now I've got this great producer, Robin Rothschild and she's putting the money together so we can shoot it in the Spring with Debbie in the lead and maybe Brinke and Linnea in the cast as well. We thinkwe owe it to Maria's gost to get it made. My other dream project would be a stage version of MacBeth with Frank Langella as MacBeth and Austin Pendleton as Banquo. I'd like to use stage magic to make the Banquo's Ghost scene work so Banquo is projected translucently on the stage. Of course my other dream gig is to be the night manager of a chocolate factory staffed by naked ballerinas.
DE - Finally, have you made a film you really wish no one had seen?
JL - Oh yes. Well, sometimes I wish no one had seen any of my movies. There are times when I hate each and every one of them. There are also times when I love all of them. Since I answered that question though, the movie I was going to name has once again wormed its way back into my good graces so, today there are no movies that I wish no one had seen.