On January 4, 2013 Lionsgate will gas-up their chainsaw and pull the cord on Texas Chainsaw 3D, the John Luessenhop-directed sequel to Tobe Hooper’s classic Texas Chainsaw Massacre that stars Dan Yeager, John Dugan, Bill Moseley, Alexandra Daddario, Sue Rock, Tania Raymonde, Scott Eastwood, Gunnar Hansen, Tobe Hooper, Paul Rae, Keram Malicki-Sánchez, Ritchie Montgomery, Trey Songz, Marilyn Burns, Shaun Sipos, Thom Barry and Richard Riehle.
Yesterday we published an on set report from Bloody Disgusting correspondent Alyse Wax, and now I can share my interview with Luessenhop! We discuss the difficulties of taking on the mantle of the series, the tonal similarities between this film and Tobe Hooper’s 1974 original and whether or not this on tops the lame Next Generation in terms of actually having Chainsaw kills.
What does it feel like picking up this mantle? It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a Texas Chainsaw movie.
It’s a heavy mantle to pick up and run with. I’m such a fan of Tobe’s original movie, you’ve got to think twice before you step into those very big shoes. But we’re happy with it. We think it works on all of the levels that the audience wants to see. It’s a real story, it’s contemporized, it’s got horror and jumps. It’s down and dirty. It’s got everything that makes it a Chainsaw movie.
From the trailer it looks like it’s closer to Tobe’s film aesthetically than it is to the Platinum Dunes ones. And it doesn’t seem to have the satire of the second one [TTCM2], either.
Forget the second one. We do have some kitsch, I won’t deny that, but it’s faithful to horror and suspense. The look of it is not over manipulated, but I do think it has a popping look. It looks contemporary. It’s a fresh take on it. It does homage some of the elements of Tobe’s original, but they’re all done in clever ways.
I heard it was extremely hot onset.
That’s right. It was 107-114 degrees. There were people driven out to the hospital on one day. And technically, it would shut our cameras down. We were shooting native 3D which is much more challenging and cumbersome, but we wanted to avoid a lot of the post headaches people have on 3D pictures. But beyond that everyone worked really hard and there was a great amount of enthusiasm.
Do you have a favorite kill? Or one that was particularly difficult to pull off?
Three of them actually. There’s three I’m very proud of that are all done differently. One is in your face, one’s Hitchcockian and the other is an homage to the original film. I went back to Tobe’s original and sprinkled a bunch of fun moments back in, and they come at unpredictable times.
Is there an homage to the scene in the first one where Leatherface slams that steel door shut? That’s such a chilling moment.
Oh it’s iconic. I introduce it very early in the movie so you appreciate it. One of the characters approaches it but obviously doesn’t know the significance of it right away, so it raises the tension.
If I remember correctly, Next Generation didn’t even have one chainsaw kill in it. You fixed that, right?
Oh yeah! It wouldn’t be complete without one! You can’t call it Texas Chainsaw Massacre and not have a chainsaw kill! That one’s a mess!
Provided this one does well, do you have a sequel in prep?
I have a sequel idea. This film does tee-off a franchise run. One of the things I’m proud about it is that it’s about an idea that can feed into other films. There’s a lot of interesting elements in play.
How does Dan Yeager’s Leatherface differ?
Well the character is over 20 years older now than he was in the first one. So Dan really had to adjust his body language, he’s a more adult Leatherface. He really studied his character in order to bring that kind of mileage to him.