Today I’m welcoming back filmmaker, Blaine Duncan as he discusses his upcoming film, The Paranormal Diaries: A Documentary Film and his exciting event, The Paranormal Diaries Film: EVENT. Thank you, Blaine for stopping by!
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a pretty simple guy with a love and passion for paranormal investigating. I grew up in a haunted house and the idea behind figuring out what it is that goes bump in the night has always been intriguing to me. I was always that kid who laid under my bed covers at night reading scary ghost stories, trying to pretend to be brave and then freaking myself out. As I got older I started experimenting with the paranormal and ghost hunting a little bit more. I began sneaking out and going to graveyards or local spots that were reported to be haunted. I did this kind of thing by myself for a really long time, which obviously isn’t something that should be done for many reasons, but I always felt like working in a small, intimate group of only a few people, or by myself, was the best way to really confirm what you were seeing or hearing wasn’t being caused by human interference.
Your upcoming film is titled, The Paranormal Diaries: A Documentary Film. Tell us about that and what was the inspiration behind its creation?
The film was actually an idea that I had back in 2009 or 2010. Life circumstances at that time, or maybe just where I was at in my life, didn’t allow for me to go out and really pursue shooting a documentary like I hoped. Fast forward to January of 2016 and I finally said, enough is enough, I need to make this film. I have to do it, because it really is something that I need to get out of my system. I needed to check that box so-to-speak. So in May, along with my brother Austin, we packed up our camera equipment and ghost hunting gear for what turned out to be a two month road trip, traveling around the country, driving the back roads of America in hopes of finding some unknown haunted hotspots. And that’s exactly what we did. We really wanted to do something different that no one else has done and incorporate the road trip idea or theme into what the film truly is. There’s sort of this parallel between us traveling down the road and traveling in our own personal journey to document proof of the paranormal.
In honor of your film, you have a special event scheduled in November. Share with everyone all the exciting details about The Paranormal Diaries Film: EVENT.
Yes! I’m really excited about this. It’s been a lot of work in the making to do this event, but I wanted to go back to many of the places that we filmed at and present part of the film. I always had this idea of how cool would it be to show a documentary film about a haunted location while actually watching it in a haunted location? Though we won’t be showing the entire film and only clips from our time on the road, it’s still my hope some day to do that. The event is going to be great though. We’re having some guest speakers including Angela and Brady from Twin Cities Paranormal Society who I have so much respect for and the work that they’ve done. Psychic Tiffany Johnson will be there to do her psychic gallery in the basement of The Palmer House, which is going to be super cool. And then we have Suzanne Worthley who I can’t say enough great things about! She’s just awesome. It’s going to be a great event with non-stop activities going on throughout the weekend. We’re going to finish the weekend off by having a ghost hunt throughout the entire building on Saturday night. What people don’t realize is that most of the hotel is going to be ours to wander and investigate, which is something that isn’t easy to come by. Many times there are only certain areas that you can get into or certain areas that are off limits, but for the most part, almost the entire hotel will be available to investigate. It’s going to be fun!
Why did you choose The Palmer House Hotel in Sauk Centre, Minnesota as the event’s location? And what’s the history behind this haunted hotel?
I chose The Palmer House because it was actually the first location that we investigated in 2016 when we hit the road. It was a place that I had been to before filming there and a place that I just really love. It’s incredibly haunted and I’ve had some really fun, crazy, experiences there. Many people actually believe that The Palmer House sits on some sort of portal and spirits come and go from the building constantly. There’s everything from full-body apparitions seen there, including ghost dogs and cats, cold spots, sounds of children playing throughout the building, items that move about on their own, really you name it. It’s just an amazing place and the owner, Kelley, has just been amazing to us. The event proceeds are actually 100% going back to the hotel, we’re not making a dime from doing this. As a way to thank Kelley for allowing us to film there and a way for her to know how much we appreciate her and her beautiful building, we decided we wanted to give the money back to her for restoration projects. Hopefully we can do more in the future and maybe even screen the whole film there one day!
Have you experienced anything paranormal at this beautiful, historic site?
I have! I always tell people that if you want to dip your toes into the world of the paranormal, The Palmer House is the place to do it. I’ve never picked up on anything negative or dark there, so I don’t think of it as a “scary” haunted place. It’s for sure haunted though! As a matter of fact, it’s been voted the most haunted place in Minnesota and one of the top ten most haunted hotels in the country. What will be fun is for those people who are staying the full weekend, I believe they will be most likely to have an experience. It seems like the building and it’s spirits get used to you and they seem to want to interact more the longer you stay. I can’t wait to get back and I hope to have my own experiences when I’m up there again!
Where can people go to purchase tickets for The Paranormal Diaries Film: EVENT?
To purchase tickets for the event, go to our Facebook page by searching The Paranormal Diaries: A Documentary Film on Facebook, and we have a link on our page to the event. If you follow the event link you will see how to purchase tickets through PayPal. And then once you have your ticket for the event, give The Palmer House a call and book your room for the whole weekend. The owner has been kind enough to include Thursday night free for anyone who stays Friday and Saturday.
What’s next for Blaine Duncan?
I always have all kinds of ideas running through my head! I have a couple ideas for my next film project that I would like to do and I may stray slightly from the paranormal field with the second film. It would still be focused on something quite dark and scary, more in the sense of monsters, myths and lore throughout America. I’ve also been interested in doing some writing as well, so who knows, maybe I’ll put pen to paper and start jotting some stories down some time.
Any positive words of advice?
Don’t get caught up in some of the negativity that runs wild through the paranormal community. It’s sad that everyone can’t get along, but for the betterment of the paranormal field, I think people need to present a united front so that the scientific community will start to take this subject more seriously. I hope one day we can get there.