Director’s cut radio: Bringing the dead to lifeMatt Osterman is the producer and director of “Ghost from the Machine,” a science-fiction thriller about a young man who builds a machine that brings the dead back to life.
By: By Terry Bell, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
Matt Osterman is the producer and director of “Ghost from the Machine,” a science-fiction thriller about a young man who builds a machine that brings the dead back to life.
Terry Bell: How did you get interested in the paranormal as a film subject?
Mark Osterman: What happens to us after we die is one of those themes that humans have wondered [about] for the history of existence. I was just fascinated by it, so I decided [to write a story about] what would happen if you took hard-core science, real science, and tried to tie it to the supernatural. What would happen if we were to do that?
TB: And what happens in the movie is that your protagonist figures out a way – and he does that by manipulating electricity.
MO: Yeah, he builds a machine that can raise the ambient level of EMF, you know, electromagnetic energy, which ghosts can then use to manifest.
TB: Now, this is not strictly a horror movie. There’s a lot going on here. There’s humor, and a lot of very poignant personal interplay.
MO: Yeah, if you go into it expecting a horror movie, you’re going to be disappointed. Because it’s not overtly scary — it’s really creepy, and there’s a few moments where you will be scared.
TB: How plausible do you think your premise is?
MO: I don’t want to paint myself into a corner with my own movie, but I would say unlikely. But I will say that humans have the capacity to think we’re a lot smarter than we actually are. And there are a lot of things out there that we really have no idea where they came from, why they’re there, or … we’re just discovering the universe right now. So there are going to be things we’re going to find out about in the coming decades and centuries that would blow us away in today’s world.
TB: You suggest in your movie that Thomas Edison tried to invent a machine that would make it possible to communicate with the dead. Is that true, or is that just something you made up?
MO: No, it’s out there. Some people have debunked that. Other people say “no”, there’s proof that he did try to do this, but he just failed, it was just one of the things he couldn’t do. There is proof out there, you can Google it and look for Thomas Edison’s device.
TB: Before we go, I have to ask – you hear a lot of stories about strange goings-on on the sets of ghost story movies. Did anything unusual or spooky happen on the set?
MO: Yeah, I mean – a lot of weird coincidences. You know it was almost like the universe was conspiring to help us to make this movie, you know? We’ve exceeded expectations, and it’s been a great ride, and I can’t help but think maybe the other side was helping us.
See more of Matt Osterman and “Ghost from the Machine” on Director’s Cut, tomorrow night at 10 p.m. on Wisconsin Public Television.