Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Premiere! The Invitation
Beyond Fest has been in full effect since last Thursday night's premiere of gangster flick Legend starring Tom Hardy with writer/director Brian Helgeland stopping by for Q&A. Things have been pedal to the floor ever since with a Better Off Dead reunion, Evil Dead double feature with Edgar Wright, Bruce Campbell and surprise guest Sam Raimi along with 600 foam chainsaws then a rare concert featuring Italian composer Frizzi. We finally made it Monday night for the west coast premiere of The Invitation, a single location ensemble piece about a dinner party featuring old friends who haven't seen each other in two years after a family tragedy. We saw a clip at Comic-Con and you just knew some weird shit was going to happen. Directed by Karyn Kusama from a script by Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi, the flick stars Logan Marshall-Green, Emayatzy Corinealdi, Michiel Huisman, Mike Doyle and John Carroll Lynch. It was a packed house and the lobby was set up with posters from various films playing throughout the festival. But the pre-show clips of random horror, trailers, Rocky III training and whatnot lent terrific additional energy.
- Hay and Manfredi have been kicking the idea around since about 2000.
- Play on reality and legends of Hollywood Hills' various crimes and oddities.
- Kusama met Green at a coffee shop who thought he was a loitering lurker, liked his lack of ego or vanity.
- Diverse cast reflected reality of living in Los Angeles.
- Nice to work in modern day, independent horror or sci-fi as big ideas can replace big set pieces.
- A week before shooting, ensemble cast and filmmakers spent time with each other alone, in pairings and groups to work out dynamics and tone.
- Edited in Kusama and Hay's garage much to neighbor's chagrin.
- Worked hard to keep the tension up throughout, where to throttle, where to let go, etc.
It's a little tough to talk about since once you see it or talk about it, you can't unsee it or untalk about it, know what I mean? A great night and a solid flick, bring on the west coast premiere of Bone Tomahawk aka Kurt Russell's gothic western, with cannibals! See ya at The Egyptian.