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.
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.
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.
Horror.com has new interviews with producer Wes Craven, director Dennis Iliadis, and cast members Sara Paxton, Monica Potter and Garret.
The video can’t be embedded so poke Krug -> to go to the site.
And if you live in the L.A. area, there will be a free screening of The Last House on the Left on Thursday at 7:30 pm at the Los Angeles Film School, followed by a Q&A with writers Adam Alleca and Carl Ellsworth. Click here for details.
Finally, MovieWeb.com was at the same press junket and has interviews with the same bunch. Video below. Good stuff.
Canadian film site MoviesOnline has a lengthy new interview with Sara Paxton. To read it, click here. A few quotes about Garret after the jump.
Q: You and Garret have worked together before, did that help knowing what scenes you would have to do on this together?
SARA PAXTON: Definitely. Garret and I met a couple of years ago. I was about 15 and I was doing a pilot called “Mr. Ed,” a remake of the original television show. I got along really well with Garret on that set, so when I heard that he was going to be playing Krug, I was honestly so relieved because all I could keep thinking was, “Who’s going to be playing Krug?” You know, some actors don’t want to form a relationship. If they have to hate you on screen, they want to not get to know you in real life. So, I was nervous about that and trusting the person. When I knew it was Garret, he’s so unlike Krug, he’s so gentle and sweet and thoughtful and so I knew we weren’t going to have a problem communicating and really going full force on that scene. I didn’t want us to hold anything back. You can’t. Otherwise it’s not realistic.
Q: What are the actor discussions you have when you’re staging a graphic scene like that?
SARA PAXTON: Dennis (Iliadis) was really great because he really cared about the actors. We had this lengthy rehearsal process for two weeks before actually stepping foot on the set for the first time and that was just mainly to sit around as a team and go over the script, figure out your character, and go scene by scene. We played out the physicality of the scene so that on the day I didn’t need to think about it. I already knew what I was going to be doing. All I had to worry about was my head space and the emotional aspect that day.
Q: Were you concerned who was going to play Krug because of the script or because of the source material?
SARA PAXTON: Because I’d read the script and I knew the scene. I just feel to really get the full performance and for me to really let go, I needed to trust the people I was working with and feel protected and that’s what happened. I think I ended up being able to open up more and do things I hadn’t even planned on being able to do because I had really bonded with the cast so much.
Q: Did you ever tease Garret on the set about being Jesus and how he’s fallen from grace?
SARA PAXTON: No, I’ve called him Sharpie eyebrows because…
Q: You called him what?
SARA PAXTON: Sharpie eyebrows because they would dye his eyebrows and it just looked so funny. You’re like Sharpie eyebrows. (Laughs)
Q: Oh, it looks like they’re drawn on by a Sharpie. I get it.
SARA PAXTON: Yeah. Because he’s blonde. He’s so fair. When we started filming, he had the beard, he had the hair that he’d been growing out but it wasn’t black, and then Dennis made the decision, let’s go black, let’s make him scary. So, the first day after they’d dyed it, it just looked like “Eerk! Eerk!” (sounds of eyebrows being drawn on by a Sharpie) I definitely made fun of him for that. Oh my gosh! It’s so funny because that day of the assault scene, it’s such a touchy subject because it was so emotional and of course, so horrific, but at the same time as I’m looking back on it, there are moments when I just had to laugh because we had to wear these little nude patches on our private parts and I’m just envisioning Garret getting glued on and I’m standing there and the make-up woman is gluing it on to his groin and I’m like if anyone knew and saw this right now, they’d be like “Oh gosh!”