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Friday, June 26, 2020

Kevin Bacon Explains Why Haunted House Thriller ‘You Should Have Left’ Feels Close to Home [Interview]

You Should Have Left isn’t just a supernatural thriller. It’s a reunion between filmmaker David Koepp and actor Kevin Bacon, who previously starred in Koepp’s impressive supernatural thriller Stir of Echoes. Their new film is, like their first, also about Bacon’s character suffering from psychological horrors at the hands of a frightening supernatural force, and the dangers that emerge not just for the protagonist but also his family.

But whereas Stir of Echoes was a story about a working class man who suddenly was able to talk to ghosts, You Should Have Left is about a wealthy family with ties to banking and Hollywood, who are trapped in a labyrinthine haunted vacation home.

If you ask Kevin Bacon, as Bloody-Disgusting did in a recent interview, what it was like reuniting with David Koepp after more than 20 years, he waves it off with a laugh.

Well, we’re both older!” says Kevin Bacon.

“It’s almost like it’s funny, ‘re-uniting,’ because we actually stayed pretty close,” Bacon explains. “Shockingly, for Hollywood. And for many, many years we’ve been talking about making another film together. It’s just taken me 20 years to wear him down enough that he finally agreed to it.”

“I think that he really sparked to this concept of a horror movie with a marriage as its backdrop, and I could see the wheels turning and we were having conversations about it. He was pretty close to having an outline or writing an outline and then the book You Should Have Left just kind of popped onto my radar and I read it and I said, “You know Dave, there’s a book that’s like SHOCKINGLY close to what we’re talking about already,’” Kevin Bacon laughs.

“He’s like, ‘Don’t let me in, I don’t want to see it! I don’t want to see it! I don’t want to see it!’ And then eventually he read it and we folded that book into an already existing idea that he had,” Bacon says. “And [he] took it to Jason Blum and in a very, very, relatively short… it took 20 years to get David to write the script, but from the point at which he put pen to paper and when we were actually in Wales shooting was incredibly fast.”

But even though the project shifted gears and wound up tying into a pre-existing novel, to Bacon their original premise still holds.

“I think it is fundamentally about the marriage. It’s about paranoia, it’s about dark things in your past and whether or not you… if you repent the sins of your past is it no longer necessary for you to pay for those sins?” Kevin Bacon muses.

As for the film being about a second marriage, to a much younger woman and a movie star, played by Amanda Seyfried, Bacon explains that was all part of the design. And the Hollywood story element had the added bonus of speaking to his own, personal experience.

“From the first time that David and I sat down he said maybe she should be a second marriage and much younger. And the reason for that is very specific in that the paranoia that he has about whether or not she is faithful, or whether or not he is someone who is probably on the backside of his life and maybe not as his full power sexually and otherwise, is ‘Why would she be with me?’”

“And also the generational difference between people who are attached to their phones and have that kind of world. It’s something that he doesn’t really understand,” Bacon adds.

“And, very importantly, the fact that she’s an actress and I’ve been married to an actress for 30 years,” Bacon adds, referring to his marriage with Villains star Kyra Sedgwick, “I can tell you that when an actor goes off and has a relationship with a crew and other co-stars and is at work for 14-16 hours a day, or on location or whatever, it can be a hard thing to accept or get your head around. Especially if one of the people is not in the business and really doesn’t understand it. So all those things were very specific to the story.”

Which isn’t to say that this haunted house movie isn’t also, technically, about the haunted house. Indeed, to Bacon, the two are directly intertwined in an subconscious way.

“It’s about a house being a reflection of your own soul. I don’t know about you but I sometimes dream in houses. You know, different houses, random houses, and I once had a dream therapist that told me that those were just reflections of myself. That I was just kind of building a different of myself at night,” Bacon reveals.

Does that subconscious attachment to different houses affect the way Back played his character in You Should Have Left?

“I don’t know about that,” Bacon says after thinking a moment. “But I can tell you that David was very clear that he didn’t want to do a haunted house trope, in the sense of old creaky antiques and a gothic ivy-covered thing. Especially since we were going to go to Wales. He really wanted to turn that genre sort of on its end.”

“And when we saw this particular house, which is called The Life House,’ and which by the way you actually can rent it to stay there, it just seemed like we had to have it,” Bacon explains. “There’s something cold about it. There’s something spartan about it. It’s a house that was literally created and constructed and built for people to go and have quiet meditation.”

“And so ‘quiet meditation’ can on one hand be really, really good for you. And on another hand it can make you kind of nuts, so that’s what we went with,” Bacon adds.

That raises yet another question: If you can rent the house from You Should Have Left, and You Should Have Left proclaims the house to be horrifying, will that make the house more popular to rent… or less?

“I would say more,” Bacon says. “I think a lot of people would look at that and say ‘That’s cool, I want to go there.’ Believe me, it is a very, very beautiful house.”



source https://bloody-disgusting.com/interviews/3620966/kevin-bacon-explains-haunted-house-thriller-left-feels-close-home-interview/

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