36, attended Headlands School in Swindon and is dismissive of criticism
the town occasionally receives such as it is a dull, cultureless
place and hardly an inspiration to creative minds.
personally feel quite proud to have grown up in a working-class
place like Swindon. Like anywhere, you make what you can out of
it. I had a good time, it was a great place to grow up and I still
regularly visit family I have there."
leaving school, Marcus went on to study at the world famous Ballet
Rambert school and then found work as a dancer and choreographer.
1986, along with some childhood friends from Swindon, he co-founded
the highly influential techno-industrial band Meat Beat Manifesto.
He not only designed and choreographed their unique live shows but
also directed their videos.
MBM behind in the early 90’s, Marcus moved into directing music
of the high-profile artists he worked with included The Stone Roses,
Soul II Soul and East 17. However, after directing over forty videos
he felt that he’d gone as far as he could with the medium.
said: "I think it keeps you on your toes to change around every
seven years. You can get complacent and lazy sticking to the same
thing. It pushes you to the your limit to keep finding new challenges."
admits that this period of his career was always intended to be
a springboard in to film directing.
be honest, I always wanted to get into feature directing. I did
feel like I was growing out of directing videos and it just seemed
like a natural progression. I started out with a few short films
and just became totally obsessed!"
Long Time Dead, a group of London clubbers decide to have some fun
with a Ouija Board. This leads to a terrifying supernatural force
being unleashed with inevitably deadly results.
what made Marcus pick an unashamed horror flick for his directing
love quality horror/sci-fi movies like Aliens and Silence of the
Lambs. You don’t need big time actors for horror movies, the genre
is the star. There haven’t really been any British horror movies
made for over a decade and the horror genre is globally, very popular."
directors such as Steven Spielberg, Sam Raimi and James Cameron
all started out with schlocky, low budget, horror-themed movies
so Marcus is philosophical about the critical mauling dished out
to Long Time Dead.
people ripped into it, but it is what it is," he said.
wasn't trying to be amazingly original. I wanted to make a scary,
Friday night roller-coaster of a movie aimed at the late-teen audience.
I think I did that. You
just can’t win with some critics but it has done very well and has
made back its budget already."
the subject matter, the making of the film also had its scary moments
for the cast and crew.
said: "All the actors wore crucifixes during the séance sequence
and some of them consulted a white witch before filming. Also one
time we left all the gear safely locked away in a warehouse over
night. When we returned in the morning, one of the electrician’s
belts was sliced in half."
goings-on aside, Marcus said he had a great experience on his debut
feature and singled out cast member, Joe Absolom (possibly most
well-known as Matthew in Eastenders) for particular praise.
If I can make it on five failed O’ Levels, then anybody can
guy is amazing. One minute he could be laughing and joking between
scenes then immediately turning on the tears for filming."
up for Marcus is another genre picture, Octane. He describes it
as a high concept, supernatural road movie set in America. This
time he plans to concentrate on the directing side and has handed
over script duties to a screenwriter.
don’t really think I’m a writer. It is a very rare gift. Working
on the script for Long Time Dead was a great apprenticeship but
I want to stick to directing."
a seemingly assured future as a film director ahead of him, what
advice would Marcus give the aspiring young filmmaker?
said: "Follow your dream. If I can make it on five failed O’ Levels,
then anybody can."
Time Dead is still on general release around the UK.