Now playing at theaters everywhere is director James McTeigue‘s (V for Vendetta, Ninja Assassin) The Raven. If you’re not familiar with the film, the story takes place in 1840s Baltimore where a series of grisly murders appear to have been inspired by the works of Edgar Allan Poe (played by John Cusack). Poe and a detective (Luke Evans) must team up to find the killer before he takes out the woman Poe loves (Alice Eve). The film also stars Oliver Jackson-Cohen, and Brendan Gleeson. For more on the film, here’s the trailer and 40 images.
Recently, I got to sit down with producers Aaron Ryder and Marc Evans for an extended interview. We talked about how they got involved in The Raven, the rating, deleted scenes, how the script changed when the actors got cast, Poe’s dark and extraordinary life, and more. In addition, they also talked about their upcoming projects like House at the End of the Street with Jennifer Lawrence, Jeff Nichols‘ Mud, The Cold Light of Day and The Strangers 2. Hit the jump for what they had to say.
“We got it right on this movie. It’s probably the best thing I’ve ever seen Matthew McConaughey in. Reese Witherspoon is fantastic, Sam Shepard is great, Michael Shannon… And the heart of the movie are these two young boys who will break your heart.”
Evans: [Crush] is a very fun, high school-set thriller about a teen soccer star who finds himself the object of an obsession.
Ryder: Fatal Attraction in high school. It’s a really cool movie.
Evans: Bad things happen.
“We wish it had been in process sooner. But we had some rights complications between Universal and Relativity because of the sale of Rogue that took a bit to sort out. But I’m excited to say we have a great script. It’s going to shoot this fall, which we are just starting to put together now. We are excited that it’s finally going to get off the ground, because all of us feel it’s long overdue.”
Here’s the full interview:
- Introductions and talk about the press day experience
- 0:40 – The project was written about 10 years ago. Ryder says they’ve spent the better part of a decade trying to bring the movie together in different packages. The ended up making it through their own company, independent of any studio.
- 3:40 – They did a pass on the script when they first got involved, and another pass when Cusack got involved. From then on, the script was mostly locked in until shooting, with some flexibility.
- 6:10 – Poe’s stories are very dark, so The Raven can’t be PG-13. It is very bloody and gory.
- 7:50 – There’s a car chase sequence that didn’t make it into the movie. Otherwise, not much in terms of deleted scenes.
- 9:20 – Ryder talks about Poe’s dark and extraordinary life. Evans was surprised at how funny some of the lesser known Poe works are.
- 11:50 – Ryder is excited for House at the End of the Street with Jennifer Lawrence and Jeff Nichols’ Mud.
- 13:10 – The trailer for Mud should premiere this spring.
- 13:50 – Evans has The Cold Light of Day coming out in September, and promotes the high school thriller Crush.
- 14:40 – Evans talks The Strangers 2. It will shoot this fall. He can’t say if Liv Tyler will return.