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ing a 25-years-to-life sentence for Adamson’s murder.


“It took two and a half years to get that inter- view,” Buckley reveals. “I had to research how to even write to someone who’s incarcerated; how does that system work, and who do you speak to out in the world to do that? And then, final- ly, he called me on my cellphone from prison; a Texas line came up, and I texted David right away: ‘Do you want me to go forward with it? He’s contacting me.’ And they were contacting me in a bunch of unconventional ways, which was incredibly nerve-wracking. I was able to get a 90-minute phone call in to him, and part of my producing approach was that I did not watch any of the interviews with any of the detectives, so I was not talking to him as someone who was trying to get anything damning. The first time I saw the finished documentary was literally when I saw how guilty he was.”


As it turned out, only several minutes of us- able material came out of that hour and a half interview.


“It’s not like he gave us gems of information that we decided not to use just to condemn him,” Gregory notes. “He just kept on repeating stuff, more detail about how he and Al were friends and things like that, but it wasn’t anything that gave you evidence he didn’t do it.” The question of bridging the spirited chronicle of Adamson’s cinematic exploits and the darker portions dealing with his demise was very much on the minds of the filmmakers as Blood & Flesh came together. As it turned out, there was a side to Adamson’s story in his later years that even some of his fans might not have been aware of, that proved the right subject to provide that seg- ue. In the early ’90s, Adamson launched a movie called Beyond This Earth, an investigation into the existence of UFOs and aliens that led him to run afoul of the government. A few of the inter- viewees are reluctant to discuss the subject on camera, lest there be repercussions, lending an unnerving edge to Blood & Flesh before it gets to the circumstances of Adamson’s death. There’s even the hint of a conspiracy theory that going down that extraterrestrial rabbit hole might have gotten him killed.


“We deliberately float that idea out there,” Gregory says, “because although Sam Sherman says in the documentary, ‘Bullshit, I never ac- tually suggested that,’ he does kinda have his doubts about the facts of what went down. But since he was so close to Al, he didn’t actually follow the trial in detail, so he doesn’t know as much as we do about what happened there, what the evidence was against the murderer, and things like that. Certainly, though, Sam was very nervous about how far they were going into the alien world. We’ll never know how nervous Al was about it, and how serious he was about it, but from what people were saying, he definitely got into it in a way that he never got into any of the subjects he had done movies about before.


Horror Business: Shoestring budgets, multiple re-edits, and numerous title changes weren’t uncommon for Adamson’s oeuvre. (From top) Psycho à Go-Go (a.k.a. Blood of Ghastly Horror, 1967) and Horror of the Blood Monsters (1970).


It may have been just him needing something to occupy his time, when he got lonely after Regina died. He really went for it, travelling the world to find out information.”


For his part, Gregory isn’t a believer in the vis- itors – at least, based on the material assembled for Beyond This Earth that he was able to view. “All the footage I’ve seen from Sam does not have that smoking gun of aliens exist!' He said that himself, so there is nothing really in there. Whether it could be made into a feature film re- mains to be seen, because it’s just a shit-ton of rushes and interviews and photos and things like that.”


Nonetheless, addressing this project served the crucial purpose of transitioning between the documentary’s two sections.


“That’s what makes it interesting and made it a feature, as far as I was concerned, because we had this stuff that is unique to Al. When it goes


into the alien story, I felt, okay, we can build this into something where it’s getting strange, and have the audience wonder where it’s going. Still, structurally, we had to second-guess if we were going to lose people at that point, because the pace changes completely when it goes into the weird.” So far, Blood & Flesh doesn’t seem to have lost anybody, and has played to critical accolades following its world premiere at last summer’s Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal. As it gets further out into the world, Gregory has a simple ambition for it.


“I just hope people get a lot more intrigued by Al’s life and films from watching the documen- tary,” he says. “There’s a huge, wide variety of movies and people who were involved; it’s a big stew of colourful characters who went in vari- ous different directions in their lives, and a lot of them became important film people.”


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