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Q & A With ‘Crave’ Director Charles de Lauzirika

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One on the films that should be on everyone’s must see list for 2013 and 14 is the new film from Charles De Lauzirika Crave starring Josh Lawson and Ron Perlman. This week I was able to speak to Charles about the vivid imagery of Crave and the overall process of making the film. Thanks to Charles for his time.

What kind of gun was used in the initial subway dream sequence by Josh Lawson’s character Aiden?

You know I have to be honest originally I wanted a desert eagle. I wanted a big tough guy superhero overkill type weapon. That was from a one day shoot about 10 months after the rest of the film was shot. It was shot in Chicago unlike the rest of the movie that was shot in Detroit. That scene was shot on the L train in Chicago. We had to chose between a tiny little pop gun and this hybrid. I’m not sure what the actual weapon was just that it had this big scope on it that made it seem like overkill.. I’m like we are sort of in a fantasy and even though we hadn’t alerted the audience to it yet why not have a crazy gun to tip off the audience on what’s happening. I don’t remember exactly what type of gun it was but at the end of the day it made sense. Like do we go with this tiny little wimpy gun or this big overkill.

So do you think Aiden’s occupation as a photographer adds to the vivid imagery we see in theses fantasies of his?

Oh yeah I think that so much of our existence now is based on imagery. If you compare visual photography today, and I mean even regular amateur photography to that from twenty five years ago its so sophisticated. Things like instagram have kind of forced people to care about what they are shooting not just random selfies. They are taking really nice photos worrying about composition and adding color and filters to them. So in many ways I think our obsession with imagery and as Aiden’s job is all about Imagery, its interesting his job as a photographer is almost incidental. We don’t go into it that much. Its there as a kind of a background for the film. So my answer would be yes. imagery and photography is the key to Aiden’s fantasy world like a gateway drug. He starts to indulge in imaginary imagery based on the horror that he sees.

Josh Lawson role of Aiden reminds me of Robert De Niro’s portrayal of Travis Bickle in the film Taxi Driver. Is it true to assume that the tone of the film is similar to that classic movie?

I don't think so. The Travis Bickle of it all is really there in the script. I didn't approach the film that way at all. I know its there in the script because both Robert Lawton and I are both big fans of Taxi Driver. I didn't see the need to try and emulate or remake a classic film. A film that had far more support behind it. But with dealing with a psychologically fractured vigilante character it tends to remind us of characters like Travis Bickle. The tone of the film I think is very, very different from Taxi Driver but in terms of the genre of it all or non genre. Like how do you classify Taxi Driver? It’s the Travis Bickle genre. In ways I really wanted Aiden to be the genre of Crave like its his own thing.

How was it working with Ron Perlman who played Pete in Crave?

Ron is such a seasoned pro that you didn't have to worry about him. What was great was to see him experiment a bit. In every take he would throw in a little something that was strange and something we had not talked about. So that was always the fun part like what was gonna be the surprise on each scene with him. He was no fuss, no muss totally non drama. He came in, did his part played around a little bit with the dialogue and his interpretation of the character. For the most part he was pretty straight forward and really wonderful to work with. I would love to work with him again. He definitely brings the right attitude to the character.

Why the choice of Bill Gates for the voice that we constantly hear calling Aiden in Crave?

Well part of it is Aiden is frustrated in many ways. He’s frustrated about good and evil, about women. A part of that is due to his financial problems because he’s broke. He wishes he had one little life saver thrown his way and occasionally I have these thoughts. I think god if I just had a billion dollars all my problems would go away. Rather foolishly I think that. I mean who has a billion dollars to spare? Who has all that change to give up? Bill Gates came to mind. So it just became a funny character to have in Crave A software magnet billionaire there to be a lifeline for Aiden He usually reaches out to Bill Gates when he needs something so it was kinda just the absurdity of it all. Just like having a character like the president show up or just some icon public figure show up out of character. That's a fantasy when he actually sees the fictional Bill Gates. That gets one of the biggest laughs in the movie. Its just one of those things where I haven't seen it in a movie before and it’s kinda fun. I didn't try to apply too much logic just something from the heart and the gut.

Do you feel Crave will appeal to fans of different genres?

Absolutely I feel that Crave plays very strongly in the direction of multiple genres. Which unfortunately I think is very hard to do. People nowadays are marketers and they want to know with absolute clarity is it a thriller is it a horror or whatever. Crave defies conventional identification with any genre. Thats because we explore so many genres through Aiden. Aiden has such a tempest of different emotions in his head to classify this as any kind of genre. That’s what I found so fun about this. When we were shooting the movie, its almost like we would go to the set like OK today we are going to shoot a comedy. Tomorrow we are going to shoot a horror film. It was like everyday was different little short film in a completely different genre. At the time I was real worried about this. Like when its put together will it be all over the place, but Aiden stitches it together. Then add the score and it kinda brings it all together under one roof at the end, it worked. That's what I think was so great is we filmed with no a clear genre in mind.

Once again I would like to thank Charles de Lauzirika for his time. Crave stars Josh Lawson, Ron Perlman , Emma Lung, and Edward Furlong. It will be in select theaters and on demand Friday January 6th. Crave is being distributed courtesy of Phase 4 Films. Read my review for Crave here. For more information on Crave and to see if it will be showing in your area visit their website: http://cravethefilm.com/

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