David Schmoeller

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David Schmoeller
Born (1947-12-08) December 8, 1947 (age 66)
Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Occupation Director, producer, screenwriter
Years active 1976–present

David Schmoeller (born December 8, 1947 in Louisville, Kentucky) is an American film director, producer and screenwriter. He is notable for directing several full-length theatrical horror films including Tourist Trap (1979), The Seduction (1982), Puppet Master (1989), Catacombs (1988), Netherworld (1992) and Crawlspace (1986) starring Klaus Kinski. In May, 2012, Schmoeller was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Fantaspoa Film Festival in Porto Alegre, Brazil where his new feature film, Little Monsters (2012) was screened along with his other notable films.


Schmoeller was born in Kentucky but raised and educated in Texas. He completed a Masters program in Radio-Television-Film at the University of Texas at Austin. Fluent in Spanish, he was briefly an interpreter for ABC Sports during the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City.

He spent six months as an intern with writer-director Peter Hyams on the film Capricorn One.,[1] before writing and directing his first theatrical feature Tourist Trap (1979).

Tourist Trap was based on Schmoeller's University of Texas thesis film The Spider Will Kill You. Shot in 24 days, it features a score by Pino Donaggio, performances from Chuck Connors and Tanya Roberts, and contains sound effects culled from The Time Machine (1960) and Gone with the Wind (1939).[2]

Schmoeller also wrote the screenplays for Tourist Trap (1979), The Seduction (1982), Crawlspace (1986) and Catacombs (1988).

In 1982, he directed The Seduction (1982), a thriller film starring Morgan Fairchild and Andrew Stevens.

He directed the horror film Puppet Master in 1989 and also wrote its original screenplay. Many of the puppet characters Schmoeller created for Puppet Master have appeared in the various sequels that comprise the Puppet Master franchise.

In 1991, Schmoeller directed The Arrival starring John Saxon. The Arrival is a horror-themed science fiction tale which tells the story of an old man who comes across a fallen meteor from outer space. Soon, the old man begins to grow younger and younger, aging backwards. However, he also develops an intense thirst for blood.

In the early 1990s, he directed several episodes for television series such as Silk Stalkings and Renegade, and also directed a TV movie called Search for the Jewel of Polaris: Mysterious Museum in 1999.[3]

In recent years, Schmoeller has produced many of his own film projects including the full-length feature Thor at the Bus Stop (2009) as well as the notable shorts Please Kill Mr. Kinski (1999), Spanking Lessons (2007), Wedding Day (2008) and the short horror film Ha, Ha Horror (2012).

His most recent film, the full-length feature film titled Little Monsters, will be released in 2013. He also appeared in the 2013 documentary Rewind This! about the impact of VHS on the film industry and home video.

He is currently employed as a film professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Filmography (as director)[edit]

Motion Pictures[edit]

Television series (as director)[edit]


External links[edit]