These are from the press junket for The Last House on the Left:
And here is one from the premiere:
Garret Dillahunt News Blog
These are from the press junket for The Last House on the Left:
And here is one from the premiere:
CinemaJudge.com posted a 25-minute video that includes the trailer, clips from the movie, cast & crew interviews, and some behind the scenes stuff. Most of this has already made the rounds on the net, just never in the same place. To see it in HD, go to YouTube.
USA, 2008, 27 MIN
DIRECTED BY BLAKE SENNETT
East Coast Premiere/2nd US Showing
Winona Ryder delivers a riveting performance as a pill-popping, emotionally off-balance stage mother trying to break her daughter into film. Fortune strikes when they get a screen test for a film starring Elisha Cuthbert, but the biggest hurdle may be closer to home than they realize.
Below is the latest batch of interviews for The Last House on the Left.
About.com has a video from the premiere. Head over there for the clip. Here is a part of the transcript:
He’s such an evil guy. How tough was it to leave him behind at the end of the day?
Garret Dillahunt: “It was a relief to leave him behind at the end of the day. I don’t feel like it was hard at all. We did our job, we did it hard, and then we went out and had some fun.”
When you read the script was there anything you were leery about doing?
Garret Dillahunt: “No, not at all. I love a rape in a movie [said totally sarcastically - for those who are reading the transcript without watching the video]. No, of course I was leery about it. It’s almost like you’re battling your instincts. You want to do a good job as an actor, but you wonder about the value of putting something like that onscreen. But you know I don’t think it’s gratuitous and I think it really sets us up for the second half of the movie where the audience has to start asking themselves questions about themselves.”
Were you familiar with the original film?
Garret Dillahunt: “I wasn’t. I had never heard of it. I certainly watched it after the fact. It was certainly influential in its day so I have a lot of respect for it.”
Why do you keep playing these bad guys – this and Terminator?
Garret Dillahunt: “Well, there’s also Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is worth five or six bad guys I think, maybe seven. He’s pretty good.”
Do you think this is more horror or thriller, or what do you think it is?
Garret Dillahunt: “I’m fine with whatever you want to call it. It seems like you get a different definition of what a horror movie is from any fan you talk to. The original had no supernatural elements either, and yet they call it a horror movie, you know? I don’t know. It doesn’t matter to me.”
Todd Gilchrist has a new interview with Garret on his blog. Here is a part of it:
Did the film turn out the way you expected it to?
Garret Dillahunt: Pretty much. I’m worried about that first third. I think it’s pretty brutal. While I think we did a good job at it, that just means it’s believable brutality; it’s not unrealistic. I don’t know what it is, it’s like something takes over almost that gets in the way of your – I don’t want to say taste, but your checks and balances system. Like, “I don’t know if we should be doing this, but let’s do it really good and really hard!” I think we’re in a little bit of denial about it.
What’s your reaction when you first go into something like this, and what do they tell you about the role?
Dillahunt: I don’t get to play this kind of part very often. I don’t get to be the baddest badass, I get to be the twisted one. This guy’s twisted and bad, so to me it just looked like a real good acting challenge, a departure from the last thing. If a Terminator has no emotions, this guy has like all of his at once. I just thought it was a challenge, but sometimes you wonder what the value of what you’re putting out into the world is. I hope people will… I don’t know. Wes [Craven] said an interesting thing and I kind of agree with him, and I’m not saying this is what we set out to do – it’s not that we intended to make a political movie – but there is a reason people seem to be responding to it so well in general in our test screenings, so emotionally. The original one was partially a response to Vietnam supposedly, and it’s funny, I don’t know if it was a conscious thing, but this is a time where Americans feel very powerless. I’ve said this before, and again I don’t know that’s why we did it, it certainly didn’t enter my mind, but in retrospect I sort of see why it’s speaking so favorably to a lot of people. They’re just tired of it, and they’re angry themselves, and they feel raped by whatever – the government, the economy, some people would say terrorists have invaded our homes, and they want to see some power taken back. I don’t know if that’s what will translate (laughs).
When you’re working on a film like this, are you thinking at all about those themes, or are you more focused on the immediacy of the scene?
Dillahunt: Sure. Not necessarily on this film, but again it might have been the unconscious reason that drew me to it. For me it’s about the story, which I think is an interesting one. The parents do take power, but does it cost? I love the fact that they had moments when they’re looking at each other over Francis’ head at the sink, like, “we’re doing this.” [They’re dealing with] how hard it is to kill someone. It’s not pretty or graceful or slick like they’ve been seeing in the movies all of their lives. They’re like, “if we do this, it’s completely different for us.” I also liked that they were up for the challenge, because I don’t like bullies. The only fights I got in as a kid were with bullies, because I was little and skinny and mad about being skinny and little (laughs). If you really think about it, who takes Krug out is really the first non-injured adults he meets. They’re not prepared for this, they’re not trained fighters, but they have a will. That’s interesting to me.
Was it just the appeal of playing something diametrically opposite from what you’d done before that made you want to do this?
Dillahunt: I don’t get a ton of offers – some, and this was one. That made me nervous, because you think, “if they want me, this must be crap” – you know, self-deprecating thoughts. They sent me the script, and accompanying the script was a film called Hardcore, which was Dennis Iliadis’ first film which he shot in Greece. I was judging everything by the cover at that point, and I was like, “oh they’re offering me this movie and director did this movie called Hardcore? This is going to be softcore… something.” [I came up with] all kinds of reasons not to read the script, and I didn’t know who I was being offered. When I read that, I assumed it would be the dad – I thought it would be Tony’s part, just because they kept describing Krug as a hulking figure, and I [said], “well, that’s not me.” I might be fit, but I’m not hulking (laughs). But when I watched Hardcore, it really surprised me. It looked really fantastic and it opens with this Roman soldier with that thing on their helmets on fire, and he’s kind of spinning through in slow motion while this girl is just sort of looking at him with this benign look. And it was pretty graphic too – it’s about teenage prostitutes in Greece, these two 17-year-old girls who go on a shooting spree, they go nuts after all of this abuse. The sex scenes in that were handled, I guess I’ll say tastefully in that you didn’t really see anything, kind of like ours, but yet you know exactly what’s going on, and when it was not supposed to be appealing it was not appealing.
And then when they said to me, “I want you to be Krug,” I was really surprised, and sort of excited by that. Then I met with Wes because he had final say, of course, and I wore a big padded shirt, and he was fine with it. I think I’m oddly proud of the result; I ultimately don’t know what its value is, but I think it has some. I don’t think it will speak to everybody, but I think it will speak to a lot of people. We all worked our asses off; I think it’s a good group, like we all had something to prove almost. I certainly felt like I did, that I could play that guy. I know Dennis did, it’s his first American film.
When you look at a character like this, do you say I want to humanize this guy? It seems like when you have a horror movie monster, that humanizing him can be a double-edged sword. In Rob Zombie’s Halloween remake, for example, they spend an hour offering explanations for him and then just sort of admit, “but he’s crazy.”
Dillahunt: Oh yeah. I did want to – I like that. This isn’t that kind of horror movie. I don’t think it was in ’72 either; it wasn’t in The Virgin Spring. It’s more about the parents, and what they’re willing to do. In general, I’m not that freaked out by things that are just completely impossible, although zombie movies, you could make that case for, and I find them [fascinating]. But the supernatural stuff in general – I don’t know. I feel like stories more terrifying that I feel like might actually happen, for better or worse. That might not be the escapism that a lot of filmgoers want. But it’s where I instinctively go for better or worse as an actor: I try to make him more human, and I love that. Krug has to suffer the consequences, even if you do feel sorry for him. Like, yeah, poor guy, the world has dealt you a sh*t hand, but so what?
Do you come up with a profile or back story about his life, or is it just more important to be present in each scene?
Dillahunt: You have to come up with something, but you have to make sure that the things you come up with are things that you respond to emotionally. Otherwise it’s just biography. Because with a lot of those things, it’s like, okay, that’s what happened to him, but that didn’t make me better. I think it was important with him to do those things; you want to know where [Krug’s son] Justin’s mother is, why doesn’t Justin know the things we do. I think he’s relatively new – we’re catching Krug at a time when he’s just sort of learning to kill, and starting to enjoy it or find it a handy way to deal with trouble. But I think they would be caught in short order if they weren’t killed by the Collingwoods.
How difficult was it to shoot the scene involving the sexual assault? It was almost unbearable to watch.
Dillahunt: I worried about that – how much do we actually have to show to tell that same story. It’s not easy. It’s certainly not fun. No sex scene is fun, and that is not that, this is an assault. This is a power game. There should be nothing appealing about it. I remember Dennis said a good thing. I don’t remember the guy’s title, but they were watching dailies in Africa [where the film was shot], and this guy who works for the film company, his job is to load up the dailies for us to show them. I wasn’t there, but on the dailies of that day, he doesn’t know what he’s about to see, and he left the room angry. He said, “I’m offended by this. I don’t want to watch this.” I said to Dennis, “does that make you nervous? That could be our entire audience.” He got very thoughtful and he said, “no, it would make me nervous if people masturbate.” He said it made him happy that it was properly affronting. There’s no end of perverts out there, there probably will be someone who does find it [exciting]. It was awful to do, but by the same token it was probably the most, in a shoot that I felt very focused, this was the most focused day. I felt prepared, ready to do it in as few takes as possible. I think it’s because all of my attention was on Sara [Paxton], as it should be, I think. She’s the one who really has to go to the dark place, and expose a bit of herself figuratively and literally. I’m friends with her, I was friends with her before the shoot, which is not necessarily an advantage because I wanted her to stay my friend after we were done. But I knew that I was going to go there, so it was just be ready, keep my leg in the right place, when we were not shooting, pull her pants up or get a blanket for her. Just make it as least weird as possible. There’s people that take advantage of those situations, I’m sure, and I didn’t want her to think I was one of them.
A quick quote from Fangoria:
[Dennis Iliadis] is the thing that tipped me over the edge to do it,” the actor recalls. “Not being familiar with the first LAST HOUSE, I started looking into it and realized what a reputation it had, and wondered if I could match that. Dennis sent along his movie HARDCORE, and the title made me think, ‘Oh, man!’ But I watched it and it was f**king gorgeous, so well-shot. I trusted him immediately—even if we didn’t get along, I felt I could trust him; he wouldn’t let any embarrassing or cheesy stuff get onto the screen. The audience may have reservations and they’ll have to be won over, but he was a good person to have at the helm.
And an excellent interview from Horror.com:
Staci Layne Wilson / Horror.com: You seem to be the sort of actor who likes to do a lot of research. Many of the actors I’ve interviewed are like, “Hey, it’s pretend. It’s fun. I’m not this guy at all, and I don’t need to know it.” So each actor’s process is really different which is why I love what I do because I enjoy talking to actors and learning what drives them and what motivates them and what gives us the experience on screen. But when you work with an actor who’s just like, “Oh, it’s just pretend,” how do you find it within yourself to bring what you need to, to the table? You were talking about this movie [Last House] and how it’s so collaborative, but what if it’s not?
Dillahunt: It is, but I don’t know how everyone else worked. I think it would be remiss of me to require them to work the same way I do. I don’t know if anyone else read a book or did anything else. There’s good and there’s bad. Acting, I don’t care how you get there, but just get there. Then it’s just all about the scene. What am I getting from them and am I responding honestly? That’s all I can ask. I would be uncomfortable if I had the requirement to everyone else’s behavior. I don’t think it’s necessary. I feel like it’s my skill not to need it, you know? I can use whatever I’m getting. Marlon Brando did a scene with the corpse in Last Tango. He didn’t get anything from that corpse, but you do, actually, you know what I mean?
Yeah, definitely. There’s a 70s movie called End of the Game with Donald Sutherland and Jon Voight, and Sutherland is a corpse throughout the entire opening sequence. Or, there’s the Jeff Bridges movie, Tideland, where he’s pretty much dead throughout the whole movie — and yet those two actors manage to steal the scenes from the ones who are supposed to be alive. So, we talked about your fellow actors, but what do you look for in a director because we’ve seen a lot of directors like say, Fellini, who was very exact and you had to be positioned right down to your pinkie. It was choreographed. Then there are other directors, like (I’ve heard) Woody Allen, who don’t even seem to notice you’re there.
Dillahunt: Yeah, I’m not a fragile guy, but lately I find myself more and more annoyed when directors [interfere too much]. I guess I just like it when a director lets me do my job, as well. I’m part of a whole, and I’m comfortable with that. I get confused sometimes when they talk too much. It’s like, “Okay. We got it. Let’s go.” I’ve been pretty lucky with my directors. Maybe I’m only hired by, you know, people who like me. [When it comes to the TV series I've been on, like "Deadwood", "The 4400", and "The Sarah Connor Chronicles"] It’s hard to be a director on television. I think they’re the real guest stars in a way because after a while, you know your character better than they do. They’re just coming in and sort of catching up on what’s been going on, and you’ve been doing it for a year and a half. It doesn’t necessarily direct itself, but I think it must be a real tight rope for them to walk, directing series television, because you want to have some kind of creative input, but also you don’t just want to be a traffic cop.
Is directing something you would like to tackle someday?
Dillahunt: I don’t know. I actually, honestly, haven’t had that itch. I almost feel like I should, but for some reason I don’t. I get a real kick out of my job. It might change. I used to never want to be the lead, you know, and now I feel I’ve seen the joy of that. It’s kind of like being the first mate, I used to say, rather than the captain. I like a little responsibility, but not the whole shebang. I’m so busy and so blessed right now with work that maybe it will change if I have some time off.
A couple of actors who are friends of mine, they write scripts so that they can put themselves in the ideal role. Is that something you might like to try sometime, to write a script with yourself in mind?
Dillahunt: I’m familiar with that practice. I have some friends who write as well, and they call me with ideas about stuff. It takes so long to get a movie made, by the time it comes together, I’m no longer right for that part. I just have to find the right project. I’m slow.
You want to be like Orson Welles doing that vanity project [Don Quixote] for like forty years, right?
Dillahunt: No, but I’d love to be as smart as Orson Welles. He’d probably pick the role that wouldn’t decay after a few years. The writing thing, I’ve tried to do sometimes. That’s what I thought I was going to be was a writer. I went to school for it, [but] I can’t get my own voice down.
There’s really something wonderful about writing because it is a solitary pursuit in which you get to create everything yourself.
Dillahunt: Absolutely. I never get star-struck around actors, but writers, I get really tongue-tied around. I’m amazed at what you do, that you have the confidence to send something that you’ve written out into the world. If I meet my favorite novelist, I’m like a little girl. My wife laughs at me, and she’s like, “The only time you forget to introduce me is when you meet a writer.” I just get giddy! It’s such a mysterious process. It’s like, “Wait, wait. You created this whole world just like in your room?” You read about Toni Morrison, you know, and raising her kids on her own, and she’s writing at the breakfast table with her baby who then throws up on what she’s writing, but she keeps writing around the vomit because she doesn’t want to lose the idea she had. I’m just like, “What?” I don’t know if I could be that dedicated.
Stephen King is another writer I think is great. I think Stand by Me is when I first realized that’s the perfect length to adapt a movie out of, you know what I mean? You’re not tearing away all its beauty. If it’s too massive a novel, if it’s too short a story, you’re not putting on a bunch of [filler]. I like him very much. I love The Stand. There’s so many I like, and I’ve gotten to know so many because all of them are fans of Deadwood. There’s this great [short story] author named William Gay, I don’t know if you know him, or Tom Franklin, wrote this great novel called Smoke. I tend to gravitate toward certain southern gothic type pictures, I guess. Raymond Carver, I love. Joe Abercrombie I’ve befriended by e-mail. He writes fantasy stuff.
When I saw the trailer — I saw it after I saw the movie — and I was like, ‘Gosh, they just give everything away, even the ending, in the trailer!’ That’s terrible. You don’t have any control over something like that.
Dillahunt: I don’t think even Wes did. It’s the distributors. I guess in that case, it’s Universal. But, I said the same thing to Dennis. I sent an e-mail and I said, “Whoa, the trailer’s out. You know, it looks good. [But] Who dubbed the southern?” I said and, “Also, I think we give a bit too much away.” Everybody’s secret seems to be revealed in that trailer, but he said, “I agree with you, but it’s generated such massive buzz and positive anticipation to the movie.” We’ve just sort of agreed that we don’t know anything about marketing. I guess that’s how it’s done. That’s not how I would [do it], but maybe… I’m looking forward to the next trailer that might be a little more suggestive.
A new TV spot for The Last House on the Left, which opens wide today, has emerged online:
Fearnet.com posted a video from the premiere:
And some bad news (unconfirmed for now) for the UK fans. If you were planning on seeing the film legally, you may have to wait until September, which is probably around the same time the unrated cut hits the DVD shelves in the U.S. According to HorrorMovies.ca, Wes Craven “thinks” that the movie will be released on September 4.
“Water Pills” is a strong film with a solid beginning, middle, and end. All of the major performances are note-worthy, especially the one from the film’s youngest star. While sharing the weight of the film with some talented co-stars, Anthony (or JJA as I’m sure the teen mags will start calling her) really nails her role. Her character is strong, nearly untouchable, and deals with her mom’s craziness by working harder, letting the snide comments slide right by her. Overall, everyone involved with the film pulled their own weight and it shows.
The episode was written by Zack Stentz (who posted an entry on the official blog earlier today) and Ashley Miller. Guest stars include Busy Philipps as Kacy, Chad Coleman as Queeg, Erin Fleming as Goodnow, and Yuri Lowenthal as Garvin.
The synopsis says:
As Jesse struggles to recover following her brutal fight with Riley she flashes back to 2011, where in the underground Resistance she was chosen for a life-altering mission aboard a small submarine. Back in the present, Sarah and John (unaware of Riley’s murder) decide to move out of the house. They debate whether or not to bring Cameron with them as the rift between all of them, started by Riley and Jesse in the first place, begins to widen even more.
The show airs tonight at 8PM/9PMc on Fox.
IESB.net has a video interview with Garret:
So does Bloody Disgusting:
And there is another one at Tribute.ca.
IGN talked to the cast and crew:
A new interview with Garret from LA Times:
Are you one of those people who has fundamental changes in yourself based on your work?
You mean like roles affecting you outside of the job? You know, I don’t think I am! There wouldn’t be much craft in it if you actually become those people. I like feeling like I have some skill.
I feel like you are going to have to defend “The Last House on the Left.”
You mean to you? I’m real proud of it, which is an odd thing to be proud of. I’m proud of this rape-and-pillage movie. There are reasons that I consciously did the thing — but there’s something about that basic story that is speaking to people, and I think did to me when I read the script. And I think it’s because the job situation is getting weird, people feel so powerless right now. People feel like they’ve been raped by — fill in the blank, the economy, 9/11. Wes Craven last night called 9/11 the ultimate home invasion. Not meaning to be glib — but that feeling of violation we all had. People are really responding to the film in a visceral way — and I think it gives them some release. I kind of feel like it will defend itself. Wow, I got so deep there.
OK. I will see this movie.
It’s an art-house horror film. I saw it with a couple friends and, man, it’s so relentless and believable. I felt mugged. Sort of happily mugged? Is that possible?
I do hate reading a synopsis with the word “disembowel” in it.
I don’t think we disembowel! Sara Paxton, who plays Mari Collingwood, the victim of the assault, I’ve worked with her before. I was happy about that at first. Then I thought maybe it’s a bad thing — you don’t do this to friends! But she was so game and tired of playing mermaids and Snow White kind of characters. So she really went for it.
Do you get “Terminator” blow-back from fans?
I get recognized more — it’s one of the first characters I played that looks like me. There’s a lot of “Terminator” fans out there, which belies the ratings!
The “John From Cincinnati” set — I got the sensation that this was a very weird time and experience for people.
It seemed very similar to the “Deadwood” experience for me. I love writers! I get nervous around writers, because I’m a frustrated writer myself. I’m a terrible writer. I have a degree in journalism, and I thought that was what I was going to do. And I drifted through college and found acting kind of late. [David] Milch was so good to me, and it really changed me — I don’t mean professionally, it changed things for me, in the way I view material. . . . Working that inspirationally must be expensive, which you have to be realistic about if you’re a network or a money guy. What made “Deadwood” special killed it, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. For anything! And I owe a lot to that experience. Spiritually. Praise the Lord! I do that too. I get embarrassed about waxing on and I cut myself off at the knees. That’s a nice little trait there, FYI.
Why did you think you bombed out as a writer?
I might be a little hard on myself. I was a fine writer! I worked for my little hometown newspaper. I thought I was going to write fiction. [LA Times]
Dennis Iliadis and Wes Craven had a few things to say to STYD about casting Krug:
Shock: Dennis, how did you come about finding your cast?
Iliadis: We were not trying to be obvious. Trying to get people who won’t play these characters in stereotypical ways. With Garret [Dillahunt], everyone who came in before him was playing Krug with a squinty eye and raspy voice. What the hell? My feeling is, if you get the ambiguities right, he’s much more terrifying. However evil Krug can get, he still has a sense of humor. He’s supposed to be a father and Garret realized all of that, keeping those things alive. By having time to rehearse, I really pushed the actors in the beginning and I just sat back and enjoyed it. They got this extra freedom to keep it very real.
Craven: You always look for someone who is, in a way, going to do it not the way every actor would do it. You’re looking for that originality. Because you have to rely on the actor. You can’t write everything and tell them exactly what they have to do. Even when finding Robert Englund [for Freddy Krueger], I started by looking at big stunt guys who could do the stunts. Then we looked at old men for the “old man” element. Those that were alive had reached a certain gentleness. The stunt guys have a totally different mentality. They don’t want to go someplace dark and creepy. Robert Englund wanted to. You need an actor who can bring a complete sense of commitment to that character without making it silly and not be afraid to go in there to the point where someone might say, “Oh, you got bad in you?” You have to be brave enough and mature enough to know we’ve all got it, and you’re not afraid of putting it out there and if you’ve got a problem with seeing that, tough. [laughs] Garret was fresh and new, he could go there. [ShockTillYourDrop]
Sara Paxton talked about working with Garret in another recent interview:
The rape scene in this film is incredibly gut-wrenching. How did you prepare for that?
I was nervous about that from the moment they said, “You have the part.” We were flying out to this new place where I’d never been before, that is so far away from anybody who could give me emotional support. I started freaking out a little bit. But then, when I got there, and I met everybody and we all started bonding, I realized that they had become my family away from home. Getting on set that day, I was so nervous. I was in my room and I was feeling so sick, and thought I was going to barf. My anxiety level was through the roof. And then Garret [Dillahunt] and I had a talk, and he really calmed me down. We decided that we were going to get through it together, and just go full force, and we completely trusted each other. And I felt like everyone had my back, so I felt like I was able to open up and kind of do things that I didn’t think I would be able to do at all. I felt safe.
After the scene was done, how did you recover from that?
We did that scene for 17 hours. I would have loved to be at the craft service table in between takes, goofing off, and joking like how we normally were—I really just couldn’t that day. Once you lose that headspace, once you go out of it, you can’t go back. I had to stay in that dark place all day. So once they called cut, this weight just went away, and I immediately could just breathe and smile and be happy, be myself. I immediately ran up to Garret [Dillahunt]. He’s really protective of me, and I think it was really hard for him. BlackBookMag.com
Finally, in the clip below, Wes Craven and Dennis Iliadis discussed what will be on the Last House DVD/Blu-ray when it comes out.
Below is the text snagged from first casting side for Garret’s character, Sheriff Baskin, in Winter’s Bone. It’s the scene that sets the plot in motion, in which he meets the film’s main character, the meth dealer’s daughter, and delivers some bad news to her.
EXT. REE’S HOUSE – DAY
Ree, in a big overcoat, is chopping wood. Snow is pelting on her face and neck as she splits the wood. She’s got headphones on and the music is fueling her chopping.
She takes a break and sits on the woodpile, enjoying the beauty of the snowfall which is covering everything. The valley seems in twilight though it is mid-day. Ree sees headlights approaching her house.
A police car pulls up and Ree walks over to see what’s up. She sees her two brothers in the back seat.
She storms around the hood to the driver’s side. SHERIFF BASKIN, 30s, opens his door a crack.
They didn’t do a goddamned thing!
What the hell’re you tryin’ to pull?
Ree steps back as the sheriff steps out of his car.
Hold on, girl – I just brung’em
down from where the bus stopped.
Just give’em a ride is all.
She blushes, embarrassed by having jumped to conclusions.
She sees that her relatives across the way are watching; she can see curtains parted, shapes moving.
You boys don’t need to do no ridin’
around with the law. The walk
ain’t that far.
She points to the woodpile.
Now get up there and bring them
splits into the kitchen.
I was on my way here anyhow.
Now why in the hell would that be?
Ask me inside. I need to talk some
with your momma.
She ain’t in the mood.
Ask me in or watch me go in anyhow.
Whichever way you like it best.
Goin’ to be like that, huh?
Listen, I didn’t drive close on two
hours just to see your smilin’
face, girl. I got reasons. Ask
me in or follow, it’s goddamn cold
Baskin heads up the stairs to the door, and Ree jumps ahead of him, stopping him at the door.
Stomp your shoes. Don’t track melt
all over my floor.
Baskin dramatically stomps the snow from his feet, making the porch planks vibrate and the snow fall from the railings.
Ree shrugs and holds the door open for him.
INT. REE’S HOUSE – DAY
Clothes are strung in three lines across the kitchen. Behind a line of clothes Ree’s mother, CONNIE, 39, is sitting by the pot-belly stove. Baskin looks at Connie then back at Ree.
You better just tell me.
Could be we should talk on the
EXT. REE’S HOUSE, PORCH – DAY
Ree and Baskin stand awkwardly and silent. The porch is surrounded by a veil of falling snow. Ree notices her cousins, BLOND MILTON and SONYA, both late 30s, cutting down the hanging meat in their yard. They keep looking over at Ree’s porch, very curious about Baskin’s presence.
You know your father’s out on bond,
Looks like he’s been cookin’ again.
I know that’s the charges you laid
against him. But you ain’t proved
it on him. You got to prove it
That won’t be no hard thing to do.
But that ain’t even why I’m here.
Why I’m here is, his court date is
next week and I can’t seem to turn him up.
Maybe he sees you comin’ and ducks.
That could be. But where you all
come into this is, he put this
house here, and your timber acres
up for his bond.
He what now?
Jessup signed over everything. If
he don’t show for trial, see, the
way the deal works is you all lose
this place. It’ll get sold from
under you. You’ll have to get out.
Got somewhere to go?
Ree is taken aback but doesn’t want Baskin to see her shock.
She stretches over the rail and lets the snow land on her neck.
I’ll find him.
Girl, I’ve been lookin’ and…
I’ll find him.
After a moment Baskin turns to leave. Across the creek Blond Milton and Sonya stop to look, openly staring at him. He waves to them, but neither move a twitch in response. He goes down to the steps.
Make sure your daddy gets the
gravity of this deal.
In many ways, the character you’re playing in LAST HOUSE, especially in the way he was played by David Hess in the original, marked a turning point in the way evil was depicted on screen, and the evil that men do. Where is the starting point for you in bringing a character like that to life?
Garret Dillahunt: I guess it’s different for every part. Some you kind of know. Sometimes you’re like, “I’ve met this guy.” I’ve certainly never met this guy. I did read a lot. I got one of the Amazon Kindle things, which I thought I would hate, but I really love, and I packed it with 15 or 20 books I thought would be of interest, about serial killers and spree killers. There’s one in particular, and I can’t remember which one it was now, that kind of detailed a whole bunch of different killers. I think I was looking for little clue to explain why he was the way he was. I do think he’s a spree killer, not a serial killer–I learned the difference in that. Do you remember Andrew Cunanan?
The guy who died in Florida, sure.
GD: Yeah, the guy who killer Versace. I never would have thought that I’d find a lot for my guy in him, but I did, because there was this one story, really horrible. I guess I didn’t really know about all of the other people he’d killed on his way to Florida. There was one in particular that was a home invasion–I think he needed a new car–and he must have surprised someone at home. It was an older gentleman who had a military background, and they said he killed him so viciously and it was odd because that kind of cruelty is usually reserved for people that know the victim.
Did having worked with her before help at all in staging that horrific rape scene?
GD: It was helpful. But it was both, I think. Because you don’t want to do that to your friend, and I considered her my friend. I kept saying how nervous I was and that I was more nervous that she was, and she misunderstood my nerves. It wasn’t that I was nervous that I could do it; I was nervous that she wouldn’t like me after I did. Because I like her. She was 15 when we worked together the first time, and she was 19 or 20 now, and I like her and feel protective of her. So in the end, I think that it was helpful. That scene has to be about her. She’s going to go to a real dark place all day long, and I’m going to grind her in the dirt. There’s no room for joking around between takes. Let’s just be focused and not to this 100 times. We’ll do a good job, and between takes, I’ll help her up and put a blanket around her and make sure she’s safe. I think we made it the least weird we could. She was real nice to me and grateful.
That’s especially good to hear because, if you believe the stories, the actress to played the role in the original essentially lost her mind because of those scenes.
GD: Yeah, there are different philosophies about how to act. I personally don’t think it should be psychologically damaging. There’s no money in that. [laughs] That’s not acting. I prefer a little more craft than that. I don’t see why I would be needed if I actually had to become that thing.
I’m also a fan of “The Sarah Connor Chronicles,” so I have to ask about John Henry. There’s so much being made about how the shift to Fridays is a bad sign for the show’s future and the rating, and they’re kind of missing the point that the show has never been better, especially those scenes with you and Shirley Manson.
GD: I guess I like to be different with each character if I can, and I’ve been fortunate to have some options that way. Krug was certainly a departure from the last thing I did. And since I got to do something like four characters to play on “Terminator“–John Henry, Cromartie, George Laszlo, and that Beastwizard character–I just wanted John Henry to be very different. I thought, he’s going to be so much smarter because he’d plugged into this supercomputer, and he seems interested and curious in humans, so it seemed like a great opportunity to explore human emotions and learning and what I don’t know at times. And I like Shirley a lot, really fun, very well read and articulate, and everything just sounds cool with a Scottish accent.
So where does John Henry go from here. Does he finally get to leave that room?
GD: He does get to leave the room. I wish it had been a little earlier, but I will eventually get to leave that room. There are big fingers crossed for next season where I’ll be going, but I don’t know; we’ll see where that goes.
Is there still more learning to do for that character?
GD: I don’t even know what episode we’re on. I play with lots of toys. Later I get in a fight, a computer fight, that is quite traumatic for him. He loses his innocence a little bit. I’m sorry I’m being so vague.
Speaking of being in a separate story from the main plot, you and Tommy Lee Jones had your own little movie going on in NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN.
GD: Javier [Bardem] was talking about how wild it was that we won this ensemble award at the SAG Awards and we barely got to work with each other. Each of us had our own movie. That’s not really what ensemble means but it was interesting. I never crossed paths with Javier or Josh [Brolin].
Being a part of that film had to mean so much to you…
GD: Yeah, I was just happy to be a part of it. I’m a big fan of Cormac McCarthy’s work, and I was determined to be in every Cormac McCarthy movie there every was. So far two! It was actually “Deadwood” that made me just want to do stuff I was proud of.
And with “Deadwood,” they loved you so much, they couldn’t let you go even after your character died.
GD: I know. Thank God, right? That’s my niche. I’m dying for a niche.
Who do you play in THE ROAD?
GD: Well, it’s weird because it’s really about The Boy and The Man. No one has names in the book. Viggo Mortensen plays The Man, and Kodi Smit plays The Boy. I play The Gang Member. We all had two days if we’re not Kodi or Viggo, and it’s a great group of people who are willing to do that. Robert Duvall is in it, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce is great. Molly Parker from “Deadwood” is in it as well. It was just cool to be a part of. I’m a big fan of THE PROPOSITION.
I sat down with Viggo in October right after they’d announced that THE ROAD was not coming out at the end of last year as originally intended. He just really wanted to see it because he hadn’t at that time.
GD: I think it deserves awards. I’m sure he’s seen it by now. I saw a screening here about three weeks ago, here in L.A. I think it’s pretty beautiful. If you’re a fan of the book, you’ll be a fan of the movie.
Aside from THE ROAD, what is next for you?
GD: I’m filming a movie right now called WINTER’S BONE, based on a book of the same name by this guy named Daniel Woodrell. He wrote the book RIDE WITH THE DEVIL was based on. Do you remember that?
The Ang Lee film?
GD: I think that film is kind of underrated. I like that. Same author, but it’s a little more contemporary. It’s about hillbillies cooking meth in the Ozarks. I’m a sheriff in that one, back to playing good guys again. I’m not always bad guys.
Well, you did play Jesus.
GD: Can’t get much better than that. You played him, you can play as many bad guys as you want.
Why do you think guys like ["Deadwood" creator] David Milch or ["Terminator" creator] Josh Friedman or Wes Craven see you as the bad guy? Are you giving off some vibe?
GD: I don’t know. I just like interesting role and good stories. And often, the villain is the most interesting role. Maybe they understand that no one is just good and just bad. It’s always surprising.
You tend to alter your facial hair for each part, does that inform you into the character’s state of mind in any way?
GD: [laughs] I guess I do. I don’t know if it specifically it does, but it is like any other part of your costume. I need the right shoes. I remember reading about Michael Caine. If his feet aren’t in a short, he’s going to wear his old comfy tennis shoes, even if he’s wearing a suit or something. That’s the kind of thing that throws me off completely. I need my heavy boots on for Krug. [Ain't It Cool News]
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