Consider this a Tales From The Crypt reunion show! Rick Bota went aboard Crypt season three – same as Gil and Alan. Over the years, Rick was director of photography on twenty episodes (including some of the best including William Friedkin’s “On A Dead Man’s Chest”) and the first Crypt feature film “Demon Knight“. But, Rick also DP’d the Crypt Keeper segments that started and finished every episode. In fact, Rick also directed a few – one of only three people to ever have that relationship with our franchise player.
As Gil and Rick discuss, a lot of thought and effort and hard work went into each and every segment. Rick went on to DP and or direct some interesting movies: Barb Wire with Pamela Anderson and entries six, seven and eight of the Hellraiser film franchise. Barb Wire is kind of a notorious failure (nothing to do with Rick’s excellent work). Rick reinvigorated the Hellraiser franchise when he took it over.
How To Shoot The Crypt KeeperBut, mostly we’ll talk Tales From The Crypt, how to shoot a Crypt Keeper segment and the joys of just being on that show. We got to work with the most amazing people (like the aforementioned “Exorcist” and “French Connection” director William Friedkin). In fact, Rick has a not merely a good Billy Friedkin story but a great one!
As we made Tales From The Crypt 30 years ago, we didn’t have the luxury of CGI. The one time we did get a little fancy was on Bob Zemeckis’ episode “You, Murderer” which starred John Lithgow, Isabella Rossellini and Humphrey Bogart. Rick also DP’d that one. We didn’t realize it at the time, but we were living in the movie and TV stone age. Yeah, Rick Bota shot the Crypt Keeper all right – and the Crypt Keeper loved every second of it!