Hamish Downie’s Five Questions With Tim O’Leary

Editor Note: Hamish has another in his series of Five Questions With…

Hamish came up with this idea because he was accumulating too much material for his Famous News Sushi column and asked if he could do these mini-interviews. Why would we say no?

Thank you Hamish for being such a trooper for us. We really appreciate all for your hard work.

Let us know what you think of these interviews in the comments below.


TGG: Could you introduce yourself to our readers?

TO: My name is Tim O’Leary, and I’m a screenwriter and director based out of Los Angeles. My husband, Robert Rice, and I run a production company called Freaky Fighty Funny Films, and our mission is to create genre films and series that showcase marginalized leads in horror/action/sci-fi stories. I’m also the founder of the Los Angeles LGBTQIA+ TV Writers group, which currently has over 600 members on

TGG: Could you tell us about “Demonhuntr”?

TO: Demonhuntr was birthed as I imagine a lot of projects in Hollywood are – in a pool! So, you know, a water birth. Very modern. Anyway, Rob
and I had our friends Zach and James over for drinks in the pool, and the four of us got to talking about projects we wanted to make. We’re
all nerds who love comics and horror and sci-fi, and we’d all worked on films together before. But we’d never made anything ourselves, just
the four of us. I had an idea for a series about a scrappy group of friends who run a business killing demons in Los Angeles, and it just
exploded from there.

After an exhaustive month of crowdfunding in which we raised over $30,000, we were able to go into production. There are some elaborate fight scenes in the show, so the first thing we did was get our cast and stunt people into the rehearsal space to learn the choreography. Once we started principle photography, we were off to the races. It was the first production that any of the four of us were in charge of—and certainly the first big project I’d directed—so it’s really gratifying that it’s getting some recognition now.

Mitch Harrod, who runs the Soho Horror Film Festival, described Demonhuntr as “Buffy, but make it gayer,” and quite frankly I can’t think of a better description than that!

TGG: Could you tell us about your sexy new horror short, Hylas, and what inspired it?

TO: Ah, Hylas! Like I said, I’m a nerd, and I’m an uber-nerd when it comes to Greek mythology. It tends to color almost everything I write.
I’ve always loved the myth of Hylas, because when removed from the greater narrative of the Golden Fleece, it plays out like a horror movie. Poor twink Hylas, the boyfriend of Hercules (or Heracles if we’re being accurate), is minding his own business and gets abducted by some nymphs, never to be seen again. There’s a magnificent painting by John William Waterhouse—Hylas is kneeling by the pond, and the water nymphs look very innocent and seductive, and one is gently touching his arm, and if you know the myth you know they’re about to take him away, which is pretty dark. But the moment is frozen in time when it looks lush and sensual. I love that dichotomy.

Anyway, it’s a years-long tradition that for my friend Benito’s birthday, we go and stay at a friend’s condo in Palm Springs with a small group. After a year and a half of quarantine, I just wanted to do something creative with other people where we didn’t have too much structure. Normally I am not a “fly by the seat of your pants” kind of guy when it comes to filmmaking—I am a planner. But in this case, I just wanted to have fun. So, it was as bare bones as it could possibly have been. No sound, no special equipment, just us and my iPhone. I still had a script and a shot list and all that, but beyond that it was the closest I’d come to being in third grade again making superhero movies in my backyard with my dad’s camcorder.

If you want to check it out, it’s available on Youtube here:

And let me know what you think in the comments!

TGG: We’ve got a lot of indie creators who follow the website, so could you tell us about your LA LGBTQIA writers group? Do you have any advice for other LGBT writers out there?

TO: One thing I’ve learned in my time in Hollywood is the absolute necessity of a tribe of like-minded people if you want to accomplish anything.

When I first got to LA, I searched high and low for a queer writers group, only to discover that one didn’t exist. So I created the Los Angeles LGBTQIA+ TV Writers Group, and we’ve been meeting consistently for the past four years. We share scripts, do table reads, give each other feedback, socialize, and maybe even partake in an adult beverage or two.

Having a collective of queer creative friends has been a godsend to me in my career. All sorts of collaborations have sprung up from the group, which has been really gratifying for me to see. Fostering a community is so important, because it’s true what they say—this town and this industry are absolutely brutal, and the only way to survive is by building a community.

The best part is that nowadays, you don’t even need to be in one centralized location. Social media and video conferencing have given everyone, no matter where they live, the ability to form a writers group. So writers – reach out and connect with each other. And if you’d like to join my group, here’s the link to our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/278236662649503

TGG: Finally, how can we best support you?

TO: Please follow me on all the socials:


And definitely follow Demonhuntr for updates about when and where you can see it! It’s currently in the festival circuit so it’s not available to watch anywhere online at the moment, but by following our socials you’ll be able to know when you can view it. (Just remember it’s very NSFW, so don’t watch it at Starbuck’s or they might kick you out.)


And the best way to support indie creators is by spreading the word. Tell your friends, share links, etc. It makes all the difference.

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