Clerk director Kevin Smith took a stab at horror with the 2011 snoozer Red State, which made me believe he needs to stick to comedy. But who cares what I think, as long as Smith enjoys what he’s doing, I say godspeed. And who knows, maybe he’ll one day knock it out of the park? He’ll try for a win with Tusk, his personal homage to Tom Six’s Human Centipede where a Doctor Frankenstein of sorts turns a man into a walrus. What started as a podcast joke has turning into reality as Smith, known for pounding out screenplays, is already in pre-production and casting.
In a lengthy interview with EW, Smith breaks more on Tusk‘s plot, while also revealing that he’s cast Jeepers Creepers star Justin Long, pictured, as the film’s Frankenstein. By the end of the interview, I actually found myself convinced this could be good…
“It’s about a guy who turns another guy into a f–king human walrus,” Smith tells the mag. “As weird as it is in my head when I talk about it, they finally sent me the costume designs by Robert Kurtzman, and I was like, ‘Holy sh-t, it’s a monster movie, I had no idea.’ I thought I was making a kind of sister thriller to Red State. As soon as I saw the designs, I go, ‘Of course this is a monster movie and he’s Dr. Frankenstein.’ ”
It sounds as if Red State‘s Michael Parks will be playing the film’s Dr. Frankenstein, while Justin Long will play his creation, the “walrus monster”: “It was written for Michael Parks, who I loved in Red State. That was one of the best times I ever had my career, sitting on a set, rolling a camera on a true f–king genius, who is pretending to be somebody else and I forgot who the real guy is because his performance is so good,” explains Smith. “I wrote the script around him, so it’s nothing but Michael Parks dialogue porn. Justin Long is the guy in the walrus suit. I needed a guy who has expressive eyes because once you’re in that suit, you’re covered. I reached out to Justin and he wrote back and was like, ‘This is awfully scary but how can we not? Let’s fall down this hole.’ So it’ll be Parks versus Long trying to answer the age-old question, ‘Is man indeed a walrus at heart?’
“It’s a f–ked up movie, dude,” Smith boasts.
Tusk begins filming on October 21. Expect a festival run in 2014.