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Kevin Smith filming new horror movie “Killroy Was Here” in Sarasota

Production runs through weekend with Ringling College students and graduates on its crew

A year after saying he might make a movie in Sarasota during a Ringling College of Art & Design visit, Kevin Smith has returned to film one.

The “Clerks” director is shooting the horror movie “Killroy Was Here” in Sarasota in partnership with Ringling College and Semkhor Productions. In a statement, Smith said the film is both a monster movie and classic morality tale.

“No one wants to see you spill the blood of innocents, but when someone crosses the line and goes bad, you get to make them pay in horrible ways, and the audience cheers,” Smith said. “Like ‘The Twilight Zone,’ ‘Killroy’ is full of ironic twists and grisly moments. We wanted to make an anthology film in the vein of ‘Creepshow.’ ‘Killroy’ is like the Golem, the Boogeyman and the Grim Reaper combined.”

Filming began Monday after two weeks of pre-production, and runs through this weekend. Shooting has taken place on Ringling Studios’ soundstages and locations including Longboat Key.

The movie stars Azita Ghanizada (“Alphas”) and Ryan O’Nan (“Fargo,” “Ray Donovan.“) The film’s crew features 26 Ringling College students and graduates, including members from the school’s motion design department.

The film will use special effects makeup by the award-winning Robert Kurtzman and Creature Corps.

Smith came to prominence in the ’90s for the indie films “Clerks” and “Chasing Amy,” but in recent years has increasingly worked in the horror genre with movies such as “Red State” and “Tusk.” The latter film starred Justin Long, who has also worked with Ringling College.

Smith spoke to Ringling College students last year.

“This is a huge arts community,” Smith said. “Driving in, there was nothing but art, art this, art that, art everywhere. I had no idea. You guys are the best kept secret in Florida. There are a lot of jokes about this state, but this place is pretty f---ing dope.”

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