We reviewd Amityville Mt. Misery Road a while back, but we were really excited to get the chance to interview the filmmakers, Chuck and Karolina Morrongiello, to learn more about how the movie got made. Thanks to them for opening up some time in their busy schedule for us!
B&S About Movies: We were really by the distribution the film has.
Chuck Morrongiello: Yeah. We worked hard on that and it ended up being a great deal. When the film is good, that’s what happens.
B&S: What inspired you guys to make this movie?
Chuck: The thing is, my wife is from Poland and I’m from Long Island, New York. We went to Poland and she showed me some historical things like World War II bomb shelters and a lot of other places — ghostly places, haunted places — so when we came back to New York, I wanted to show her some of my old stomping grounds.
One of the most famous places and it’s considered one of the most haunted roads in the world is Mt. Misery Road. It’s been cursed for centuries and it’s right around the corner from Amityville.
I took her there right before Christmas in 2015 and we walked around in 10-degree weather and I said, “Hey, nobody has ever made a movie about this place and it would make a great story.”
We had about ten days there and I said, “Just start walking in the woods and I’ll start filming.” When we got back to the hotel, we watched it and thought that we were on to something. Within a day or two, we wrote 25 different scenes and it all came together.
We knew the story we wanted to tell, of the asylum that burned down and all the great history and tales of Mt. Misery Road, like the creature with red glowing eyes, a hellhound the haunts the woods and even Mothman, they’ve all been seen there.
B&S: Was it frightening to be in those places when you shot the film?
Chuck: We had many, many things happen while we were there.
Karolina Morrongiello: Check out our Facebook page!
Chuck: We have ten different testimonials of people that have witnessed the horror there. Plus, I grew up around the corner, so in the 70’s and 80’s we’d go there to get spooked. On Halloween, everyone goes there to find the hellhound.
While we were filming, we had a lot of problems. The camera wasn’t working. We went back another time a year later for more footage and we started hearing noises and seeing ectoplasmic fog and heard laughing sounds and even saw red dots that floated around. All of that is in the film. You can actually hear the granny laughing in the background and we left that in there. We experienced it — people won’t go there because it’s cursed and bad things have happened.
B&S: So you were lucky to escape with the footage you got.
Chuck: Well, we went in there with a mission. We wanted to see if we could really found something and we did. We were blown away when we listened to some of the audio and watched the footage.
When my wife was editing this film, she had nightmares!
B&S: Are there any plans for a sequel?
Chuck: That’s a good question. We’ve been talking about doing Mt. Misery Road 2 because people have been asking us. Everyone in Long Island — you can ask anyone there — they’re proud of having the most haunted road. My grandparents, my mom and dad, they all warned me to stay away from this place since I was a kid!
We put the movie out and it sold out in Long Island. WalMart stores were sold out across the country! You were lucky that you found a copy!
B&S: What are your influences? Did you grow up watching horror movies?
Chuck: We like horror flicks, we like drama and suspense. While we were there, the idea just came to my head though. Nobody ever made a film about this place.
Karolina: The Intruder.
Chuck: That was great.
B&S: What else would you tell people about your movie?
Chuck: It’s a b movie. We filmed it on our phones. That movie Tangerine and Unsane, they’ve been filmed on phones too. We made a low budget movie on our terms, with a few actors, and all three were from the area and knew that road. One of them even had their car jolted near the cemetery and had no idea how many people that has happened to! I said, “That was probably Mary!”
Our budget was probably the lowest ever — $2,500 bucks.
Karolina: We should call the Guinness Book of World Records.
B&S: It was cool to see that you’re a couple making movies together.
Chuck: We’re always doing things together. We have a passion for this kind of stuff. We have an album right now, I was Marty Balin’s guitar player. I even wrote the whole soundtrack for this movie.
We were inspired! I didn’t see my wife for six months because she was in the next room editing the film!
B&S: Where does your wife’s nickname come from in the film?
Chuck: Her character name is Buzi.
Karolina: (laughs) Buzi means kiss in Polish, so basically when we started dating, I was telling him, “Hey give me a kiss,” but I said, “Give me a buzi.” So he started calling me that instead of Karolina. So we left it in the movie.