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How Nix Director Anthony C. Ferrante Applied Lessons He Learned From Sharknado To His New Movie - Exclusive

In his latest film, "Nix," director Anthony C. Ferrante tells the frightening tale of the Coyle family, who are caught in the grip of a supernatural entity that feeds on their grief and guilt. Although the story features a terrifying monster, at its core, "Nix" is a very human drama about the way tragedy can continue to impact those who've experienced it while also taking a toll on the younger generations later. 

Given its dramatic leanings and monster-filled horror, "Nix" may seem to bear little resemblance to Ferrante's most famous directorial effort, "Sharknado." After all, while "Sharknado" also includes horror elements, it presented them with a winking, tongue-in-cheek sensibility. Yet, while the atmospheric gloom of "Nix" may come across as quite different from the wacky weather disaster of "Sharknado" and its five sequels, when Anthony C. Ferrante sat down with Looper, he explained that there were some key things he learned from "Sharknado" that made a big difference when he turned his attention to "Nix."

Working with a low budget

While "Sharknado" may be Anthony C. Ferrante's most well-known work, he's directed a diverse array of movies from a variety of genres, and he's learned and grown from each of these experiences. "I couldn't have done 'Sharknado' 6 without 'Sharknado' 1," Ferrante noted. "And I couldn't have done 'Nix' without every movie that came before it."

For "Nix," Ferrante found himself relying on two important lessons from "Sharknado." First, "Sharknado" enabled him to stick to the low budget of "Nix" and still deliver a visually stunning film.

"Being able to stretch the dollar like we did on 'Sharknado' certainly comes in handy with a film like 'Nix.' [I understood] where we need[ed] to go, because we tried to shoot it in Los Angeles, [and] we couldn't afford it. It was also in the middle of COVID, so [that] was a problem," Ferrante explained. "My hometown is Antioch in Northern California. I'd shot a film previously there called 'Forgotten Evil,' and I know that they're very supportive, so we asked them if we could film there and they opened their arms again to us and let us film in the town. ... 'Sharknado' taught me how to push the dollar beyond its limit and still come up with something that looks great."

Being flexible

Second, "Sharknado" taught Anthony C. Ferrante to be flexible no matter what the circumstances. As an example, the director recalled a particular moment when the weather didn't cooperate with what the production had planned.

"It was not an easy movie to make because when we decided to go to the woods, ... it snowed the night before, a ton of snow, and we're like, 'Now I guess there's snow in the movie,'" Ferrante remembered. "Having done a bunch of 'Sharknados,' we always said, 'Well, whatever the weather is, it's "Sharknado" weather, so if it changes, that's fine.' So ... we made the snow part of the movie ... Shooting a creature suit in the snow [in] freezing temperatures, when we weren't planning to have snow and we were in the middle of nowhere, certainly posed some challenges. But we got through it, and I think the movie's better for it."

"Nix" is available on all major digital platforms.