Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

V/H/S/99 Director Flying Lotus' Ozzy's Dungeon Short Was Sparked By An Unfulfilled Childhood Dream - Exclusive

The newest entry in the horror anthology franchise "V/H/S" is here, called "V/H/S/99," and once again a host of talented horror directors have taken on a wide variety of subgenres. From suspicious children's competition game shows to bands trapped forever by supernatural music acts and more, there are many spooky experiences to be had, and all with a wonderfully nostalgic late-90's vibe. Director Flying Lotus is no stranger to horror, having helmed the mind-bending "Kuso," premiering in 2017. Now he's back with "Ozzy's Dungeon," a short with twists and turns that begins with a woefully dangerous children's show and ends with something truly surprising. 

As for the titular children's competition show "Ozzy's Dungeon" itself, the short truly captures that larger-than-life, irresponsibly nutzo vibes of late-90's children's competition television. In an exclusive interview with Looper, Flying Lotus explains how the very personal origins of "Ozzy's Dungeon" were made possible because of an extraordinarily talented production designer, and how it's grounded in a childhood experience that he was never able to have.

From childhood memories to a pretty sus set

In the interview, Flying Lotus explains that "Ozzy's Dungeon" had its origins, like so many other horror outings, in childhood. "When they brought the "V/H/S" concept to me," he notes, "they immediately triggered things that I wanted to be part of and things that I cared about." With the core of these shorts being their grounding in a specific era, of course a filmmaker's memories and experiences of said era provide fertile creative ground. 

In his case, these formative memories lead him to the fertile ground of a children's competition show. "I always wanted to be on one of those shows so bad[ly]," he recalls. "I was always so jealous of the kids who got to do it, and I was wondering, 'Why can't we get on this show? What am I doing wrong?' In 'Ozzy's Dungeon,' I wanted to explore that a bit."

What allowed Flying Lotus to realize the children's competition series was the connection to a talented collaborator. "I basically did the short because I know this amazing production designer," he says. "If I didn't know I had someone who could build something like that for me, I wouldn't have done it. ...  But I know this guy who [is] a brilliant, brilliant artist, and I know that it's his era, so I was like, 'What if we did this?'"

It had to be right, because "I wanted to make sure that the show felt big enough, the set felt big enough," he explained. But "Ozzy's Dungeon" also involves another version of those sets (to put it in a spoiler-free manner), "and when we build the janky version of it, I wanted to make sure it didn't collapse on the actor." Indeed, Flying Lotus was genuinely attentive to those issues. In his words, "the safety was a real concern to me because that stuff really did look janky ... when you see it, it's like, 'Whoa, it's pretty sus.'"

Sus though it was, it did look fantastic.

"V/H/S/99" is now available to stream on Shudder.