Director hopes films success will bring filmmakers to area

by: TIMES PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Jason Hawkins wrote and directed the film 'The Devil Knows His Own,' a horror film shot in and around Tigard. Hawkins said he wants to bring more professionally made films to the Portland area. 'The Devil Knows His Own' will premiere at The Joy Cinema in Tigard on Saturday at 5 p.m.It’s more than a month until Halloween, but things in Tigard are going to be getting a bit spooky on Saturday.

Local filmmaker Jason Hawkins’ horror film, “The Devil Knows His Own,” — which was filmed in Tigard and around the Portland area — will be having its premiere at The Joy Cinema on Southwest Pacific Highway.

The independently produced flick is one of several films Hawkins has made in the area in the past few years.

The film — which tells the story of two siblings who return to their childhood home after the death of their abusive grandmother — was shot last August and premiered at Crypticon horror convention in Seattle earlier this year.

Saturday’s screening will mark the first time the cast and crew will see the finished film. But there is a deeper significance to the screening than that, said Hawkins, 43.

“We wanted to do a Portland screening not just for the cast and crew, but because we think it’s important to show people that we can make theater-worthy films here on a budget,” Hawkins said. “You can make films worthy of a being seen in a theater if you are willing to put in the time and the work.”

Hawkins founded Gravestone Entertainment production company a few years ago. The company has made four feature-length independent films in and around Portland and is currently working on a web series shot in Sherwood, which he is in talks with the SyFy Channel to turn into a series.

See it on screen

What: “The Devil Knows His Own” horror film

Where: The Joy Cinema, 11959 S.W. Pacific Highway

When: 4 p.m. red carpet event with movie at 5 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 7.

How much: $4

“We shot a lot of it out in Sherwood, and we intend to shoot a lot more out in Sherwood,” he said. “If that does well, that will be a regular series shot out that way.”

The goal, Hawkins said, is to show off what Oregon has to offer filmmakers and bring more work to Washington County.

“I want to show people what we have on the westside, what there is to see and what there is to use in your films,” he said.

Hawkins said he was drawn to Tigard and Sherwood as shooting locations because they offered everything he needed for his films.

“It has everything you need, as long as you are looking for a small-town vibe,” Hawkins said.

Portland is growing as a home for film and television productions, with TV series’ “Grimm,” “Leverage” and “Portlandia,” based and shot in and around the area.

Hawkins said he’d like to see even more.

“There are films that come here but not as many as should,” he said.

‘Making films where characters matter’

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - The horror film was shot in Tigard and several other cities around Portland.Along with filming in Washington County, Hawkins said he’d also like to see Portland’s westside neighbors taken more seriously when it comes to film screenings.

“Everybody right now thinks of the eastside as the artistic area of Portland,” Hawkins said. “They think, ‘We have to show it at the Hollywood Theatre or the Academy Theater or the Bagdad Theater,’ and it’s not true. The westside has all these great locations, theaters and everything.”

Saturday’s screening will feature a red carpet event before the premiere, featuring the cast and crew.

“The Devil Knows His Own” is a serious horror film, Hawkins said, and it’s not intended for all ages.

“It’s an emotionally devastating film,” Hawkins said.

Part of its horror is in its realistic portrayal of characters, Hawkins said.

“We treat them like real people,” Hawkins said.

The film has garnered reviews from several horror film websites and blogs.

Hawkins said you don’t need millions of dollars to tell a good story. “We’re not Lions Gate, we’re not a multi-million-dollar conglomerate, but we are making films where the characters matter and are pushing more and more to bring more professional studio work to Portland.”

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