Shockya has an exclusive interview with Victor Salva, who wrote and is directing the upcoming thriller Rosewood Lane. The movie, which is set to be released next year, stars Rose McGowan as a talk show psychiatrist who moves back to her childhood neighborhood. Once there, she is harassed by the local paperboy. Here are the bits concerning Rosewood Lane. In the interview he discusses the movie and why he casted Rose as Sonny Blake. Her role sounds incredibly interesting and he speaks so highly of Rose’s talent – can’t wait!
ShockYa (SY): Your upcoming movie, Rosewood Lane, follows a radio talk show psychiatrist who moves back to her childhood home after her father dies. But once she’s back in her old home, she finds out the local paperboy is really a young sociopath who is targeting her. Where did you come up with the idea for the story?
Victor Salva (VS): It’s hard to say where an idea comes from, because by the time it is fully rendered in your mind, you’re not sure exactly how it germinated. It’s not even possible usually to trace back what brought it into existence in the first place.
If I think about it historically, I would have to say that Rosewood Lane’ has its roots in lots of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Twilight Zones, Boris Karloff’s ‘Thriler’ and other genre television that first introduced my adolescent mind to the idea that your own street wasn’t necessarily free of monsters.
I think every genre filmmaker of my generation saw Bob Clark’s Black Christmas and John Carpenter’s Halloween’and realized just how truly chilling a nightmare set in suburbia could be. Maybe even more chilling than most, for what better way to scare us, than to suggest we are not safe in our homes or just walking the dog in our own neighborhood?
SY: Rose McGowan is set to star as the psychiatrist. Why did you want to cast her in the lead role?
VS: The role of Sonny Blake needs an actress who can walk a line. Who can find a balance between strength and courage and fear and vulnerability — I think Rose has a wonderful way of demonstrating each of these qualities, and we have seen that in her work.
It made her a terrific choice for the lead in Rosewood Lane, because Sonny is someone who has come from a childhood with a lot of fear and violence and has decided as an adult to be strong, to persevere and to help others through their trials and struggles.
The wonderful dilemma in Rosewood Lane, is that as she rises to a position of power and authority and one of healer — what she encounters in her old neighborhood, sends her reeling back to the days when she was a frightened little girl.
As she struggles to do battle with a dark force that on the surface isn’t ever supposed to be dark or dangerous — Sonny finds herself not only fighting for her life, but questioning her ideas about reality, and ultimately: good and evil. I think Rose McGowan is a great choice for this multi- dimensional role.
SY: You have described Rosewood Lane as one of your most terrifying stories. What is it about the plot that makes it so horrifying?
VS: The element of surprise is a key factor in horror, so revealing too much about what I think makes the film a truly scary one, would perhaps not work to best effect. Call it sharing too much too soon.
But I will say, that in every genre film I make, I try and devise new and frightening scenes — setpieces we call them — that perhaps we haven’t seen in a thriller before.
Without teasing you too much, I think Rosewood Lane, like most good roller coaster rides, has a lot of twists and turns, and dips and drops, some rises and falls, a few giggles — and of course a few unexpected plummets into darkness, meant to make us jump, scream and take our breath away.
What I like about Rosewood Lane is that many of the setpieces in this film, are I think, unique even to this genre.
SY: There have been several successful horror films, such as the Children of the Corn series, in which children have served as the primary antagonists. Why do you think horror audiences are so attracted to movies that feature evil children?
VS: I think we all remember what it was like to be a child. And a child, while innocent, is still an animal. With animal instincts for survival, and a curiosity about all things, light and dark. And I think we also remember how cruel children can be. Maybe even how cruel perhaps we were, when we were children. How dark we sometimes felt, though we learned to mask it, deny it – and certainly not act on it.
You can’t turn on the TV today without seeing that children can be as dangerous as they are young and full of light. Movies, TV, the internet, even the games kids play today, invite a scary kind of cruelty, an antipathy toward others and a disregard for human life. All of that, I think, darkens the psyche. And I think it’s made us more wary of even our own kids.
It’s no secret that the moral compass kids are given today, can break easily under the kind of pressure that comes from being exposed to terrible things. It’s common knowledge that kids can be scary. No great stretch of the imagination.
I also think movies about dark kids, play upon our idea that innocence, like anything else, can also be a mask. Like the classic film The Bad Seed that maybe first introduced the idea that a child could be a sociopath. And homicidal. It’s the last place we’d expect evil to live. And I think that makes the idea of evil kids all the more horrific and tantalizing to us.
SY: As a writer-director, you are most known for your movies Powder, Jeepers Creepers’ and its sequel, Jeepers Creepers II. How is Rosewood Lane different from these films?
VS: Like every film I make, and like most of us who work hard at our jobs, we learn as we go. ‘Rosewood Lane’ will make my eight feature film, and with each film, I learn more and more as a storyteller.
In 1989 Akira Kurosawa was given a lifetime achievement award at the Oscars. This was very late in his career, and I remember this old man, holding his statue and saying, in the most sincere and humble way, that “he was still a student of film.”
I knew that he meant that the art of filmmaking is so vast, that it was something that could never really be mastered, and that he was still learning. (Though we could argue that he is one of the great masters of filmmaking)
I feel the same way about my films. I learn on each one. I learn something different each time I go out and tell a story. And so what makes Rosewood Lane different from all the other stories I have told, is that this time, I will be bringing what I have learned from Peaceful Warrior, from Jeepers II, from Rites Of Passage, from all the films I have made and learned from, before.
Read the rest of the interview at Shockya.
Wow, I can’t wait, the movie looks verrryy interesting, and Rose McGowan is amazing!