Comic Book Divas had a chance to sit down with actor, director, writer and yes the twisted mind behind the Chainsaw Sally Show starring April Burril, JimmyO Burril, We sit down with JimmyO and pick his brain about his career in movies, his life as an artist, and of course about Chainsaw Sally, and comics.
Q:For people that may not know, please tell us a little bit about the man known as JimmyO.
JIMMYO: I’m an artist, musician, actor, director and writer… but I’m best known as the creator of Chainsaw Sally.
Q:How did you get into the horror genre, were you a fan of horror growing up?
JIMMYO: I found that I loved horror at a very young age. My Parents ran the haunted house for the PTA when I was in first grade, through fourth, so we always had Halloween stuff in the garage. The masks scared me… but also drew me in. so I guess since I was five-ish I’ve been a horror fan.
Q: You are a director and have directed movies such as The Good Sisters, Silver Scream, and you direct the Chainsaw Sally Show; how did you get into directing and have you always wanted to be a director?
JIMMYO: Well, was an actor first. I love acting, but I’m also bossy, so it seemed to make sense. directing was an after thought, as was writing. I just really could not think of a better way to see what I wanted other than just making the thing. so.. here we are.
Q: You wrote and created the popular musical play Silver Scream that became a fan favorite; what is Silver Scream about and what gave you the idea for the play?
JIMMYO: Silver Scream is a live haunted house. It’s a horror musical based on all of the old black and white films I loved as a kid, so it is presented in live black and white. The main reason I started it was so I had something cool to do as an adult for Halloween.
JIMMYO: I like the maverick group, Tarantino, Rodriguez, and even zombie before the Halloween situation. I also like Christopher Nolan… I think he’s a great action story-teller. on the camp side Ilove Herschel Gordon Lewis and John Waters.
Q: What are some of your favorite movies from a director’s point of view and why?
JIMMYO: I like movies that tell a good story. I want at least one character that I like, care about, and want to take a ride with. I don’t need fast cuts, and moving like a video game, nor do I need it to move at a snail’s pace. I don’t care what their choices are as long as I have a good character, a story I can go with, and it’s told well… I’m in. I don’t need a movie to break new ground… or be some landmark thing… just entertain me. seems like a simple request.
Q: What are some of your favorite movies as a fan and why?
JIMMYO: I love the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Blazing Saddles, Pink Flamingos, The Godfather, ScarFace, The Dark Knight, Blood Feast, The Dirty Harry movies, Night Of The Living Dead, Big Trouble In Little China…. I have no theme, no rhyme or reason… all I ask of a movie is that it entertain me. I don’t care how.
Q: You created the character “Chainsaw Sally” what inspired you to create the character and what is your vision for the character in the future?
JIMMYO: April and I were trying to Make something that was ours, while pulling from and paying homage to our favorite movies. Sally is a Slasher cocktail with a Tank Girl chaser. I would love to get a weekly show rolling on IFC… or Adult Swim… some where her fans can see her with ease.
JIMMYO: Mr. Green was about conservation, and Harriet’s was just a fun little Halloween show for kids. Yes, I sometimes miss the innocence of writing for kids… which is why….
Q: Have you thought about writing children’s books or thought about turning the play scripts into books in the future?
JIMMYO: I do write children’s books . April Illustrates and I color. our newest project which we have started is the adventures of Creepy and Boo.
Q: You are a medical illustrator for John Hopkins in Baltimore; that is a very unusual job, what exactly does a medical illustrator do; does it help when you are directing or producing a film or show?
JIMMYO: If you ever look at a science magazine… and see artwork showing how a drug works, or what happens to your liver when you do X…. that’s what I do. I have had hundreds of images published around the world over the past sixteen years since I’ve Been here. I’ll Tell you how it does help… when ever I have a kill, I go to a doctor here and ask how it would work, how the victim would react…etc. they seem to get off on it. I mean really, how often do you get asked “What Happens if you cut off a Guys Penis and Stick a Sparkler in it?”
Q: How did you get into drawing, were you one of those kids in school that was caught doodling instead of paying attention in class?
JIMMYO: Yes, Always. I Remember in fifth grade I did a drawing of Frankenstein, and was caught by my teacher… Mrs. Sudart, who had me take it home for my mom to see. Sudart wrote on it, “What Do You Think Of What Your Son Is Doing In Class?” My Mom, Who Was Very Out Spoken, Said “I Think it’s Damn Good, What Do You Think?”
Q: We have seen some comic book and other artwork on Facebook, including a very cool comic book cover for Jen and Sylvia Soska “Twisted Twins”; would you like to do comic books?
JIMMYO: I’ve drawn… always.my main job is at Johns Hopkins as a medical illustrator, so I draw every day. I don’t know that my personal style is good enough to be a comic book artist. I’ve seen quite a few that I love. however.. I love to do the color. I did the color on those comic images you’ve seen of Sally.
Q: You are working on a “Chainsaw Sally” comic book, what can you tell us about it, will it be like the show or will it blow our minds even more?
JIMMYO: Well, I guess it will be somewhat like the show, but since there are no budget, physics, or gravity limitations, it should be more fantastic.
Q: Growing up, dd you read comic books, if so what did you like to read?
JIMMYO: Batman, Heavy Metal, Creepy, Eerie … Dark Stuff.
Q: Do you read comics today do you have any favorites?
JIMMYO: I’ve always kept up with Batman, and I also like a few of the horror comics. I’ve collected some Particular horror comics As I’ve found them, like I have a comic of Blood Feast, and a few Leather Face comics.
Q: Before we end our interview, we have to ask “What does the O stand for in Jimmy O”?
JIMMYO: It Is what my grandmother called me… I don’t think it stands for anything. but I do make up stuff from time to time.
Q: Where can fans find out more about JimmyO?
Don’t miss JimmyO and April Burril aka Chainsaw Sally at Miss Misery’s Days Of Terror Convention September 28th-29 in Sacramento California; and you can look for a upcoming variant cover of “Deadly Threads” #1 comic book by Jimmy O in the future.