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Director Marcus Dunstan Turned Unhuman Into A Family Affair - Exclusive

For a majority of its runtime, "Unhuman" focuses on a group of teenagers thrown together by horrifying circumstances. After their bus swerves off the road on the way to a field trip and a zombie literally bites their teacher's face off and then comes after them, those who get away must figure out how to survive. The film's focus means few adults play a significant role in the story. That is, until a mid-credits scene that features a mysterious woman (Emma Fitzpatrick) who seems like the very embodiment of a badass government agent. But she's not with the FBI or CIA, she's not even with the IRS. No, she's with the Parent Teacher Association, and her goal is simple: To scare high school bullies, burn-outs, and weirdos straight.

It's a sequence that not only sets up a possible "Unhuman" sequel, but in just a couple minutes, becomes one of the movie's most memorable moments. And in contrast to the obnoxious field trip chaperone who gets his comeuppance, it hints at the self-assured cool that some high school teachers, counselors, and principals can have, if we're just willing to notice it. In a conversation with Looper, Marcus Dunstan, "Unhuman"'s director and co-writer, explained he had a very personal reason for including the mid-credits scene in the film, and it also led him to turn the movie's shoot into a family affair.

Dunstan called it ' hug to my mom'

Making a teen horror film in which high school looms large was significant to Dunstan because his mother was a high school educator. "[The mid-credits scene] was a hug to my mom," he revealed. "She was the first woman who was a principal in our district, [she was] always in education. When I was in high school, she was one of the counselors. She taught me how to paint. She's always been teaching."

Dunstan also wanted the mid-credits scene to serve as a corrective to other movies that mock high school teachers or play to their inability to connect with their students for laughs. "Far too often, even in the seminal comedies [and] movies of high school, the teachers are sometimes fodder, sometimes ridiculous, sometimes out of touch," Dunstan observed. "My mom never was. I wanted my dear, dear friend... [actor] Emma Fitzpatrick to show up as a character, she's essentially [playing] my mom and hit it out of the park."

Yet, Dunstan's homage to the adults that shaped him during his formative years didn't end there. He made sure his mother, father, and even one of his former teachers showed up as extras in "Unhuman." As he shared, "My actual mom is in the movie too, as the principal standing next to my fifth grade teacher, Carol Clean, and my dad, who's leading the band. ... That was awesome."

"Unhuman" is currently available on digital platforms.