SHERIDAN — A psychological thriller filmed in Sheridan will be coming to theaters soon. Writer and director Josh Lobo spent a number of years writing, filming, editing and distributing his first theatrical production, which is expected to be a success among arthouse horror fans across the country.
Lobo’s movie “I Trapped the Devil” will be streaming online and showing in theaters from California to New York April 26 and at Centennial Theatre in Sheridan May 3.
Lobo’s movie is set on Christmas Eve in the mid 1980s and focuses on an estranged man who believes he has trapped evil itself in his basement. The film is intended to be character-focused and create paranoia in the viewer. The movie was filmed almost entirely in a home in Sheridan.
“It’s more of a slow-burn psychological thriller than a blood bath or jump scare type of film,” Lobo said. “I’m very grateful that these people let us kind of take reign of their home for an extended amount of time.”
The movie had a cast and crew of about 25 people and the filming process was condensed into three weeks.
“There’s this great saying: make something fast, something good or something cheap. Pick two,” said Lobo. “By filming it in such a short period and depending on a lot of editing, we were able to (put) more money onto the screen than otherwise would have been possible.”
Among the small cast was Susan Burke, A.J. Bowen, and Scott Poythress. For Pythress, working with Lobo was a great career opportunity, being his first lead role.
“The movie was the perfect storm because I love the subgenre of Christmas horror, and it was also my first starring vehicle,” Poythress said. “I knew I had to work with Josh. He had a vision, he was passionate and he knew what he wanted.”
Lobo’s work was picked up by the Independent Film Channel almost immediately in what he described as a dream. IFC has also worked with movies like “The Babadook.” Lobo described the experience as “surreal” and “extremely validating.”
“It got a little rough when we were all crammed in the basement with extension cords and space heaters…I’d do it again, though, without a doubt and without any hesitation,” Poythress said. “For me, making a movie is the most collaborative and satisfying form of art. I love it.”
Lobo chose to take on a horror film as his first major film for a number of reasons.
“Arthouse and horror is a good entry point,” Lobo said. “It just has a great community and does a really good job of funneling out people who aren’t genuine.”
“I Trapped the Devil” has been in production since December 2015 and has a running time of 82 minutes. Lobo has a few more works in progress including an adventure horror and a studio movie.
By Marissa Brenneman