Director Richard Gray talks “violent and bloody” Audition remake

Last Updated on July 22, 2021

Back in June we learned that THE LOOKALIKE director Richard Gray had been tapped to helm a new adaptation of Ryu Murakami's 1997 novel AUDITION, which was made into the film of the same title in 1999 by the great Takashi Miike. Our brothers-in-blood at Fangoria have recently chatted with Gray who shares his thoughts on the film as well as revealing that he's going back to the source novel for his take on the tale. But no worries: he promises lots of "violence and blood".

The new movie is being backed by veteran producer Mario Kassar (THE TERMINATOR, BASIC INSTINCT), for whom AUDITION has been a passion project for years. In this version, AUDITION‘s unlucky protagonist is Sam Davis, who lives alone with his son following the death of his wife seven years prior and is convinced by a filmmaker friend to stage the fake auditions. The former ballerina with a mysterious past he falls for is now named Evie Lawrence, but otherwise details fall closely in line with Murakami’s best-seller. Says Gray…

“It’s important to note that this is a new adaptation of the novel, not a direct remake of the film—but the knives are out for me [laughs]! The novel is a very deep and powerful canvas that not as many people over here have read—or far fewer than have seen the movie. Going back to the book has allowed us to go deeper in many ways, and also offer something new. We’re not looking to rehash something that’s such a classic; we really have our own take on the novel and what it has to say about misogyny. There are very strong elements in there that we think make for great timing given what’s going on in the world, and we certainly don’t want to mess up what has already been done so incredibly well.”

Gray also adds that while he’s taking a psychological approach, his film won’t shy away from the grisly elements that are part of the Miike film’s notoriety, stating…

“It’ll definitely be violent and bloody. When you come from Mario’s background, with films like BASIC INSTINCT, the fact that we’re not approaching it as a horror film doesn’t mean we won’t push the limits of those things. The key is that, so that we’re not just remaking something for the sake of remaking it, we’re thinking about those scenes in AUDITION—whether it be the foot or the eyes or whatever—and how they made us feel at the time, and then trying to create something different that takes you to that same place. It’s also about understanding that violence has advanced a long way since 1999 in terms of what audiences have seen now, particularly in horror films like SAW or HOSTEL. It’s up to us to come up with something original, and evoke the same emotion without doing the same thing, and that’s what we’re working very hard on now.”

The Fangoria report goes on to add that there haven't been any discussions about casting yet, but locations are currently being scouted.

More on AUDITION as we hear it.

Source: Fangoria

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